From writing sessions to interviews, makeup tutorials to TikToks, and traveling between Nashville, LA and Houston, Halston Dare has 100 different things going on at once, yet everything comes together and is handled with grace and an inspiring attitude. The 20-year-old alt-pop singer is not one to back down or give up when trying times come her way.
Dare’s message of not letting anything or anyone get in the way of her living her best life is echoed in her new single “Replace You.”
Do you have anything you want to say about the release of the song ‘Replace You,’ or anything you feel is important for people to know about the song?
‘Replace You,’ my next single, is definitely one of my favorite songs that I’ve ever written. I wrote it with Michelle Buzz, she’s one of my favorite writers and producers right now – she’s just incredible. It’s (‘Replace You’) always so hard for me to describe, but I love saying that this song makes you feel like a badass and it makes you feel like you are unstoppable. You are invincible, and literally anybody would be lucky enough if they got you. It’s basically another song that shows how powerful knowing your worth is. When I was writing that song, I was at a time in my life where I was realizing how powerful and amazing my worth is, and who I am as a person, and how much I need to love myself. The song not only is just really cool to me, and I really enjoy it, it also just hits home, my heart.
Have you always had a sense of self worth, or has it been a process of getting to a place of self love?
I have not. There was a point in my life, probably a year and a half ago, where I finally realized it, dropped right down and probably didn’t realize it again until a couple of months ago, honestly. Sometimes being a kind person lets other people take advantage of you. Sometimes you can be blinded by love, and I’m one of those people who loves love, and sometimes I get blind. It’s okay to fall down and forget what you deserve, the only thing that matters is finally getting back up and realizing your worth. I’ve definitely gone through a journey of learning to be confident and secure in myself and proud, and knowing my worth and standing by that. I actually got a necklace a few weeks ago, and it’s a silver lock and I promised myself that I’d never unlock it because the lock symbolizes my worth and the love that I have for myself, and I haven’t taken it off.
Have there been specific things that have helped you get to that place?
My friends. Especially my best friend Laila, she’s literally my rock, she’s my backbone. Unfortunately we have a long distance friendship, she’s out in LA, so I only get to see her when I go out to LA and she’s been so patient with me in helping me get back on my feet. She helps me find ideas for writing. Also, the relationships I’ve been in have helped me. As sad as this sounds, it’s kind of like “thank you for breaking my heart because if you hadn’t, I wouldn’t have realized how awesome I am and what I actually do deserve, so thank you for doing that because now I know what I want, and you are not it.” That’s kind of where ‘Replace You’ came from.
What advice would you give someone who is going through the struggle of not seeing their worth? How do you suggest that they find that?
Kindness, positivity, and patience. Be kind to your mind, whatever you tell your mind is what your mind believes. Have positive thoughts even when you feel like you’re in the most negative part of your life. Try to find the most positive thing throughout your day- sooner or later your mindset will start changing. And patience, you’re not going to love yourself overnight, you’re not going to love yourself in a week, it’s a process, but if you stay true to it and you set your mind to what you really want to do, it will, and it can happen.
One of the things that I have trained myself to do is every night before I go to bed I have a reminder on my phone and it says “list five things that you are grateful for,” and I never do vague things, like “my family, my friends, my faith, and my boyfriend or friends.” I’m like, “I’m thankful for the clean sheets I’m in tonight, I’m thankful for the clean shoes I just bought, running water, a clean bathroom, the meal that I had tonight with my mom, the fun movie, a boyfriend coming over, a certain Facetime call I got to have.” I also list three things I did right today. My dad told me when I was really really young, he’d say “Halston, as you get older, life is gonna get harder, but the one thing you can do right every single day” – it’s so simple and stupid, “is make your bed, because if you didn’t do anything right that day at least you can come home and know, you made your bed and that’s at least one thing you did right.” So I try to list at least three things that I do right everyday to change my mindset to be more positive. This positive, determined, strong, beautiful, mindset that I have now has taken months, almost a year, and I’m still sometimes negative. I’m still sometimes doubtful, and I’m still sometimes insecure and unconfident, but it’s stepping stones. Nothing happens overnight and there are a lot of other people out there who are in your place too. You’re not alone, and sometimes reaching out to somebody can definitely alleviate it and help.
Not only are you a singer, you’re also doing beauty and lifestyle stuff- can you talk a little bit about all of the things that you do and how they come together to form you as a whole?
Growing up, I did a lot of things. I did art, I played basketball, I ran track, I was a cheerleader, I thoroughly enjoyed school. I really enjoyed biology, science, and math and I also enjoyed poetry. It was always nice because I got to help my friends with some of those things. I got to become friends with people in each section of whatever I did growing up. When I was trying to realize what I wanted my brand to be, I was like, I love makeup, I love fashion, I love being eco-friendly, I love finding hypoallergenic vegan products, I love singing, I love writing, I love acting, I love doing funny content… And they’re sitting there and and I’m like, “which one am I gonna pick,” and everyone was like “why do you have to pick one?” and I was like “oh my gosh thats so smart,” so I kind of sat down and was like, “I wanna be the girl that does it all.”
It kind of just kept coming as the road kept getting longer. I would say, let’s start doing makeup tutorials, next I was like let’s start doing fashion posts, lets start doing dares on Friday, and covers on Mondays, and let’s start posting TikToks throughout the week and doing livestreams and little concerts and posting about eco friendly glitter.
With all of the things you do, does it ever feel overwhelming?
Yes oh my gosh it gets so overwhelming sometimes. I realize I’m running out of content, I’m running out of ideas to write about, sometimes I’m like oh my goodness, I forgot to post about this, or I’ve got this interview call or I’ve got this writing session, and I just wrote about that yesterday, and I wanna write about it again.
It does get overwhelming, but honestly because I’ve been creating such a positive mindset over the year, I don’t let it affect me negatively. I think it’s overwhelming in a way that I am grateful that I have options and the life that I have. Like I get to have an interview call, I get to freak out about what I wanna post about, I get to freak out about losing content, and what I want to write about in my next writing session.
Life is overwhelming, but it’s how you choose to see it. You can let it affect you negatively or you can let it affect you in a positive way. My dad grew up telling me, “your attitude determines your altitude,” and that is just what I live by. Why live life seeing it in a negative way, when you can literally view it in any kind of possible way.
You’ve spoken a lot about your family, specifically your dad and things that he has told you to motivate you. How is being away from them when you’re travelling between LA and Nashville? How do you keep those connections if you are not seeing them in person?
Honestly, it’s a phone call relationship. My family does not travel with me. I wish they did. I started travelling on my own at 15 and 16, then a couple times when I was 12 and 13 I went to LA by myself and I moved out when I was 16 and had my own apartment when I was living by myself at 17 in Nashville and my family stayed in Texas. I’d come home every now and then and it was really tough. I’m super close with my family and my parents are literally my rock, so it was really hard but they supported my career, and supported me and my dreams and my goals. I told them one day, “this is what I need to do, and if I don’t do it, I’m going to regret it for the rest of my life,” and they’re like “go, have fun!” and so I did.
You share all the facets of your life and all things that you do on social media. Which platform gives you the tightest connection with your followers?
Definitely Instagram, I’ve focused on Instagram more. I’ve always answered every comment and every DM. I have conversations with and I get to know a lot of my fans – I’ve actually had a couple fans that have my number. They DM and text me a lot. I’ve been very transparent. I have other platforms, like Twitter and Facebook and TikTok, but Instagram has just been the most successful for me. I enjoy it and me being transparent with my feelings and my life and my personal life have really helped me; instead of just being an influencer on whatever social media platform, just trying to market or promote whatever they have. I think when you really bring them (fans) and show them your life, struggles, opportunities, goals, and blessings – they want to be a part of that. They want to see that. They want to know what you’re doing, how you woke up, your makeup routine, and why you cried today. The more transparent you are, and the more you can have a relationship with your fans (the better.)
You can listen to her new single here.