Carley Aquilino

Carly Aquilino

If you like beautiful girls with tattoos and a sense of humor, this comic will be your new crush.

I fell asleep with the TV on, and when I stirred hours later, there was a pixie with vibrant red hair and an arm piece on the set who was cracking wise about genital waxing. She had me at “private parts.” The show was MTV’s Girl Code, and if you happen upon the program like I did, you’ll be introduced to the wit of Carly Aquilino.

Have you ever wondered what your date and her girlfriends are doing in the bathroom? Girl Code lets you listen in. “With the show, we girls can talk about whatever we want,” she says. “We have the ability to be honest, and nobody is hiding anything.” While there is older-sisterly advice for viewers, there are also some genuine laughs.

Aquilino, a stand-up comic, was opening up for her boyfriend, Chris Destefano (of Guy Code), at Carolines on Broadway, in New York City, when MTV folks recognized her vivacity and soon after put her on the air in the female counterpoint to Destefano’s program. “What we are doing is a real reality show,” Aquilino says. “It’s not like The Real World—we are constantly talking to the audience. It took off more quickly than anybody was expecting.”

The success of the show meant that Aquilino could quit her day job working at a salon and get paid to be funny 24/7. During her INKED photo shoot, she cracked up the crew doing an impression of Ariel, the Little Mermaid, after she was given a fork to run through her red locks. But the hair is where the resemblance ends, as this heroine lacks a fishtail—and has quite a few tattoos.

The most visible of her ink is the arm piece. “I got the lotus first and built on it from that,” she says. “It represents the three parts of a lotus’s life, and life in general. They start in mud, grow up and come out of water, and bloom.” Aquilino also has a gypsy to show her independence and an owl for wisdom, and she adds little pieces by artists such as Bili Vegas and Kristen Goetz to represent life experiences.

Aquilino’s latest addition is a wishbone on her wrist that was done by her brother, Michael, a tattoo artist who is opening up his own shop in Florida called Evolution Art. She got her first piece of ink, the words “la vita è bella” on her hip, when she was just 14, and she says her parents were okay with it because they wanted their children to be able to express themselves. Looks like Aquilino has had no trouble doing just that.

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