Words: Cliff Joannou / Will Stroude
In an age in which OnlyFans is king, Reno Gold is sitting pretty atop the throne of self-employed internet stars redefining modern-day sex work.
Citing such popular porn stars as Brent Everett as his inspiration, Reno has led a rather audacious life, growing up in the casino city of Reno, Nevada, as part of a religious family who had no issue with his sexuality or his subsequent stripping career, which set the scene for online sex performer domination.
Still just 24, he's since cashed enough dollars to buy five condos (which his mother manages) and finance a college education for his niece and nephew while not forgetting to give back to his community: In December, he raised $27,000 for the Elton John Aids Foundation, with another fundraiser for an Aids charity to follow later this year.
Reno Gold for the Attitude Sex & Sexuality issue, out now (Photography: Taylor Miller)
As this very 2021 adult star appears on the cover of the Attitude Sex & Sexuality (out now to download and to order globally) Reno opens up about building an online empire while exploring sexuality - both his own, and those of the thousands of subscribers who flock to his channels each day.
"I’ve never worked for a studio. I like working for myself", explains Reno. "The most exciting thing when interacting with my fans is actually building that connection.
"I have people who are going through chemo and stuff like that. So, it’s nice to be by their side and just talk to them when they’re having hard days, or they’re having good days. It’s really nice to know that you’re affecting somebody positively."
The Nevada-born performer, who began webcamming in his late teens before turning his attention full-time to adult content creation goes on: "If I don’t hear from one of my subscribers in a while, I’ll reach out to them first. It’s not a one-way relationship, I truly have bonds with the people who’ve been with me for a while. I know what’s going on in their life. I know if they’re going through a break-up.
Reno wears briefs by Versace (Photography: Taylor Miller)
"It flips from being friendship today and then sexual the next day. It’s nice, because especially during COVID I just had a first-hand look at what people were going through, like all over the world, but most other people didn’t get to experience [that].
"And it was nice to be there with people because I was lonely at that time, too. And it’s still nice to have the company, the connections."
Surprisingly to some, given his line of work and free-spirited exhibitionism, Reno grew up in a Christian household - but in a neat twist, his parent have been not only supportive, but actively encouraging of his chosen vocation.
"I have the best family, we’re all very close" Reno explains. "I talk to my sister almost every single day. I hired my mum as the property manager of the condos that I own. And my dad helps me a lot with business advice.
"He found one of my cheques in the mail and opened it by accident. He was, like, 'That’s a lot of money. You need to be smart with that'."
Photography: Taylor Miller
Reno continues: "[My parents] were Christian, but they were, like, the best type of Christian, where they don’t judge people. They’re great. My parents let us all be individuals. My oldest sister’s a very modest, very religious school teacher. My middle sister is a lawyer and super-liberal.
"And then we have me, who is a porn star."
Reno, who knew he was different from other boys "since forever", says his comfort in his own skin dates back to his childhood.
"When you’re growing up, no matter what it is, you always feel different or bad about yourself in a certain way. It wasn’t hard on me because I had an accepting family.
Photography: Taylor Miller
"They knew I was gay before I did, so they were, like, “'If you are, it’s OK'. And I’d be like, 'Shut up!'"
Despite initially being reticent to label his sexuality publicly as he carved out an online niche for himself, Reno is now confident enough to own his gay identity in all aspects of his work.
"For a long time, I would say [it was] ambiguous just because I wanted to keep, like, the fantasy open for people" he explains. "But I wanted to show people my real life, and that was kind of standing in the way."
He adds with a grin: "But I mean, honestly, I’m gay. But, you know… I can be anything..."
See the full and uncensored shoot and interview with Reno in the Attitude Sex & Sexuality issue, out now.
Guarantee your François Sagat or Reno Gold cover in print by subscribing here using either code FRANCOIS or RENO.
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