Who plays Kiara in 'Outer Banks'? Get to know the actress behind the beloved Pogue

She's the hippie-dippie Pogues princess, but who plays Kiara in 'Outer Banks'?

Madison Bailey as Kiara in episode 301 of Outer Banks
(Image credit: Jackson Lee Davis/Netflix)

Who plays Kiara in Outer Banks? We're reuniting with the Pogues for Outer Banks season 3, but what do we know about the actors behind our favorite treasure-hunting teens? 

Everyone's quite familiar with the show's leads, Sarah (Madelyn Cline) and John B (Chase Stokes), largely thanks to their former IRL relationship, but you won't want to miss an opportunity to get acquainted with their co-star Madison Bailey, who feels as though the Netflix hit has started a whole new chapter for her.

"Working on the series has been an absolute rollercoaster,” the actress told Glamour UK. "There’s so much newness that I’ve experienced since being on the show. Everything about being a series regular, being on set that frequently and working with people my age was new."

Speaking of rollercoasters, that third season surely had its ups and down (here's the Outer Banks season 3 ending explained, in case you want a deep-dive into that cliffhanger!), but let's take a breather from all of the Pogues hijinks to catch up with Madison Bailey. (Psst: be sure to also have a look at the best Outer Banks outfits while you're at it!)

Who plays Kiara in 'Outer Banks'? Meet Madison Bailey

Madison Bailey is an American actress-model hailing from Kernersville, North Carolina (about a four hours drive away from the real-life Outer Banks, FYI). The performer, who began her professional acting career in 2015, is one of seven siblings and her sister Katie is even part of the Outer Banks family: a real-life gymnast, she serves as Madison's stunt double in the show!

On Outer Banks, Bailey portrays Kiara "Kie" Carrera, an environmentally-conscious hippie chick who is actually from the moneyed Figure Eight neighborhood but is spiritually a scrappy Pogue through and through. Though Kie has had romantic tensions with both John B and Pope (Jonathan Daviss) on the show, season 3 will finally see the character face her chemistry with close friend JJ (Rudy Pankow) head-on. 

"I'm really happy with the way that it played out," Bailey recently told People about JJ and Kiara's connection. "You see a little bit of their struggle with trying to find their common ground. There's chemistry, but how do they make something more out of chemistry? I thought it was cool to play with the back-and-forth of this season. Kiara is very much fighting for him to see that she cares. She wants to be seen and for him to know that she has his back."

Madison Bailey movies and TV shows: where have you seen her before?

The North Carolina native—who ventured to Los Angeles to act only to head back to the East Coast—has starred in a variety of movies and TV shows including American Horror Stories in 2021, Mr. Mercedes in 2017 and Swamp Murders in 2015. 

According to IMDB, Bailey is set to next been seen in the Netflix horror project, Time Cut, as well as the movie Constance, which is about a beauty queen reinventing herself.

Madison Bailey age: how old is she?

Madison Bailey was born on January 29, 1999, making her currently 24 years-old—and an Aquarius. 

What is Madison Bailey's ethnicity? 

Bailey is biracial, having both Mauritian and Italian descent. She was adopted by Alex and Mary Katherine Bailey and has three sisters and three brothers. Unfortunately, her adoptive mother passed away in 2018, and Bailey has a tattoo to commemorate her. 

Madison Bailey partner: who is she dating?

Openly pansexual Madison Bailey has been linked to college basketball star, Mariah Linney, since 2020, and hopes to pursue roles that focus on queer stories in the future. 

"When I’m with my girlfriend, I feel the everyday joy of it,” she told Glamour UK. "I feel joyful with her every single day. That might sound corny but I’m so serious—the joy is just being who I am with my girlfriend every single day."

Bailey has previously joked that her on-screen relationship with Pope is nothing like her real-life romance. “There’s no parallel between Pope and Kiara and me and Mariah,” she told StyleCaster. “They’re two completely different relationships. I definitely never had to define the relationship. We always knew, for sure."

Madison Bailey Instagram: what is her handle?

Follow along with the actor on Instagram @madisonbaileybabe where she shares a little bit of everything, from travel selfies to photos with Mariah and behind-the-scenes looks at OBX.

See Madison Bailey as Kiara in all three seasons of Outer Banks, now on Netflix. (And yes, the streamer just shared good news about Outer Banks season 4!)

Danielle Valente
Digital News Writer

Need a TV show recommendation? Maybe a few decor tips? Danielle, a digital news writer at Future, has you covered. Her work appears throughout the company’s lifestyle brands, including My Imperfect Life, Real Homes, and woman&home. Mainly, her time is spent at My Imperfect Life, where she’s attuned to the latest entertainment trends and dating advice for Gen Z.

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids, where she got to experience the best of the city from the point of view of its littlest residents. Before that, she was a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, and amNewYork, to name a few. 

When Danielle’s not writing, you can find her testing out a new recipe, reading a book (suggestions always welcome), or rearranging the furniture in her apartment…again. 

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