Relentless: Kenzie Taylor Finds Her Passion in Adult

This is the cover story of the September issue of AVN magazine. Click here for the digital edition.

LOS ANGELES—Kenzie Taylor remembers scouting the products at every adult shop within a three-hour radius of LA before launching her company in February.

The enterprising star selected turquoise for her signature Feelz lubricant bottle with her logo appearing in white font—a color combo she knew would stand out.

“I just wanted to do something that was different,” Taylor says. “And then I chose the name because I wanted to have something very short, sweet and easy to remember.

“And something that I can use as a brand so I can do other things than just the lube.”

Not unlike her approach to everything else, Taylor doesn’t want to limit her start-up to only the realm of sexual wellness.

“That is my biggest thing,” Kenzie tells AVN. “I never in my entire life wanted to be in a box.

“I always want to be outside of the box and go to the moon.”

She’s on her way.

The former licensed practical nurse in the past eight years went from hitting “bottom” to becoming an AVN Award-winning performer, producer, director, touring feature dancer and podcast host.

And now the Michigan native is an entrepreneur who is poised to release more Feelz by Kenzie Taylor products as she builds her lifestyle brand into something she never would have imagined creating on her Day 1 in March 2015.

“That’s all thanks to being in this industry,” Taylor says. “Being a performer is where it all started. It’s opened so many doors for me. It’s insane how many different things I do now.”


It’s just past 11 a.m. on the third Monday of August and Taylor already has completed a business meeting in San Diego, where she discussed a potential international deal for Feelz, and drove back to LA in time for brunch.

Later in the day she’ll head to a studio in Hollywood to record a new podcast for “The Sauce”—which she now co-hosts with her best friend, Sarah Taylor.

Kenzie debuted “The Sauce” in 2022 but tells AVN she has rebranded with a new logo that reflects her partnership with Sarah Taylor—no relation—who is in her second year in adult.

“I love it,” Kenzie says. “I’m a very extraverted person and I love talking to people and giving others a platform to be heard, whether that be to have fun or to talk about more serious things like mental health.

“So really it started out as a passion project and now it’s growing.”

Taylor, who at press time had more than a million followers on Instagram and 600-something credits for every major studio in adult, enjoyed her first performing breakthrough less than a year into her career in 2016, when she signed a scene contract with ArchAngel Video.

She kept the momentum going for a while in spite of making some lifestyle choices off the set that weren’t conducive to reaching her full potential.

By 2017, however, Kenzie admits that she was struggling to hold it together.

“I used alcohol and drugs as a coping mechanism for how I felt internally,” Taylor says. “Drugs and alcohol weren’t the problem at the end of the day, it was myself.”

The tipping point came in December 2017, when Taylor hit “an emotional bottom, a spiritual bottom”—and checked herself into a treatment facility, where she stayed for 33 days.

“Every single day for nine months I wanted to die,” Kenzie tells AVN. “I woke up and I was like I don’t even want to be here.

“It’s a miracle I’m alive today to be honest with you.”


When Taylor got out of treatment, she attended meetings and didn’t return to work for months.

“I needed to learn how to live with myself—not using drugs and alcohol to cope—and start to do healthy things in my life,” she says.

Determined to change, she developed a gym routine and began attending weekly therapy sessions—she still sees her therapist every week.

“I love my therapist,” Taylor says. “She helped change my life.”

So did her husband Seth Gamble, the reigning AVN Male Performer of the Year and Best Actor who is in his 17th year in adult.

Taylor calls Gamble one of her “biggest inspirations.”

“Because I watched him go from basically dying on a floor to where he is today and it’s like so phenomenal,” Kenzie tells AVN. “It’s incredible to see that. He’s the biggest supporter in my life and I’m just really grateful for that.”

Kenzie and Seth met at the 2016 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo in Las Vegas and started dating later that summer—and they’ve been married for the past two years after a fairtytale wedding in Oahu, Hawaii, where they lived for eight months.

During their seven years together they both experienced the lowest of lows—and never gave up on each other.

“And he got sober before I did,” Kenzie says. “He got sober in February of 2017 and I got sober in December of 2017.

“I got sober and everything changed from there. It was very difficult at the beginning because you had two people that are learning about themselves and growing and changing rapidly.”


The Miami, Fla., native Gamble tells AVN he has gone through so much with his wife.

“When I first met her it was pre-sobriety. I wasn’t sober yet, neither was she,” Seth says. “I guess you could say both of our priorities in life were a little bit different.

“I feel that someone who lives that type of lifestyle hasn’t really grown into being an adult. Me and her really grew up together and became adults. From the day I met her until now she has really, really come a long way. She’s really put the effort in. ... She’s relentless.”

Seth continues, “I’m really proud of the woman she’s become and from a performing perspective she has every single attribute. … The sky is the limit.”

Gamble, who started his porn career at 18 as a BangBros contract guy and now is a multiple AVN Award-winner and lead director for Wicked Pictures, says he and his wife push each other to be better.

“I definitely push the shit out of her, I don’t make it easy on her, I don’t,” Seth tells AVN. “And I expect as much out of her as I do out of myself. And if you’ve seen what I expect out of myself, most people would want to injure themselves.

“As time has progressed, too, she really has become a big support to me. She loves me to death and I love her to death. I would definitely not be here without her by my side.”

Taylor doesn’t mind talking about that dark period and how she emerged from it.

“I’m very open and honest and willing to share my truth even if at times it might seem like a little bit much,” she says. “Even if I can help just one person that means the world to me.

“... I’m always willing to do whatever. One of the things that’s helped keep me sober is getting out of myself and constantly doing whatever I can to help others.”


Taylor worked with three different agencies before landing with Spiegler Girls earlier this year—which was where she aspired to be all along.

“My entire career I wanted to be with Spiegler,” she says. “He’s the best, hands down.”

She cried into Gamble’s arms when the veteran agent agreed to represent her.

“Everybody really likes her,” Spiegler, who has represented eight of the past 10 winners of AVN Female Performer of the Year, tells AVN. “She’s super professional, she takes instruction well, shows up on time and does a great scene… and nobody has had a bad thing to say about her yet.”

Spiegler’s right-hand man of 19 years, George Jiries, agrees.

“Kenzie’s been nothing but an absolute pleasure to work with,” Jiries tells AVN. “She is basically the complete package wrapped in one—brains, beauty and professionalism.

“We’re really happy to be working with her and hopefully we’ll take this to the next level with her… She’s got it.”

Speaking of defining moments, Taylor points to her turn as Captain Marvel in retired Hall of Fame director Axel Braun’s parody for Wicked Comix as the biggest game-changer of her career thus far.

Taylor won the 2020 AVN Award for Best Transgender One-on-One Sex Scene for her performance with Aubrey Kate in the 2020 Best Parody winner that accounted for a total of five awards at the 37th annual ceremony in Las Vegas.


She reprised her role in Black Widow XXX: An Axel Braun Parody (2021), which paired her with Seth Gamble's Deadpool; and then again in Spideypool XXX (2022), marking Taylor's third appearance in the Marvel AxelVerse as Carol Danvers.

“For me that role catapulted my entire career to another atmosphere,” Kenzie tells AVN. “If it wasn’t for Axel—I’m not even joking—I wouldn’t have half the opportunities I have today.”

Taylor continues, “I’m so full of gratitude, like there’s no words. I’m so grateful for Axel and the fact that he took that chance on me. Because nobody would. And there was the longest point in time where I was like maybe I’m just not cut out for this career. Maybe no one likes me. Maybe I just don’t have what it takes.

“And that’s a shitty feeling when you really love something and you constantly strive to do better and better and better.

“And he did that and it ignited this fire inside of me. It was amazing. That entire movie, the whole experience.”

Braun, who retired from adult earlier this year after a legendary 33-year career, tells AVN Taylor’s performance as Carol Danvers was an all-timer.

“I had a habit of holding casting sessions for my parodies, and we would always have a line around the block,” Braun says. “With Captain Marvel XXX, since I had just relocated to the East Coast, I decided to have talent submit auditions via email. Over 120 girls sent their videos, including all the top names in the industry.

“More than half were actually very, very good, and I was having a particularly hard time making a decision. Then, at the last minute, I got Kenzies audition.”

Braun says Taylor’s “charisma, intensity and absolute understanding of the character” were what clinched the role for her.

“It was on a whole other level from anybody else,” he continues. “You could sense that she knew all along she had this incredible talent and was just waiting for the right moment to show the world. That was the moment.”


Axel says in Kenzie’s two-minute audition video that she managed to show him why she was the only possible choice to play his title character.

“And I found myself on the receiving end of a wonderful gift,” Braun tells AVN. “That gift was not her stellar performance, which made my movie a blockbuster, or the insane amount of passion that she brought to the table, or the obsessive level of commitment and consistency she showed everybody.

“It wasnt even the fact that one day when we wrapped just in time for me to rush off set in order to attend the XRCO Awards, she quietly stayed behind and helped the crew load heavy equipment for two hours, like a real-life superhero.

“The real gift she gave me was something that I cherish much more than the movies colossal success: her friendship. So, as much as I appreciate her everlasting gratitude for the role...make no mistake, I didnt really choose her. She chose me.”


Taylor grew up in a small town in “the middle of nowhere in Michigan.”

“Literally, where there’s cow poop on the road, that’s where I’m from,” she says.

When she graduated from high school, she moved to Jacksonville, Florida and then lived in Tampa.

She did hospice nursing before adult, working 70- to 80-hour weeks during a grueling period in her life as an LPN. Taylor recalls how sometimes she would fall asleep on the road due to exhaustion.

“There were times when I would wake up and I would be driving in a ditch,” she says. “And it was just very scary. There was one day where something just clicked and I was like, this just isn’t for me.”

Taylor did her best to detach herself emotionally from patients, but it usually didn’t work.

“It was very hard for me because a lot of them would be by themselves and their family just didn’t care,” Kenzie says. “And they would literally be dying by themselves.

“So I’d sit there with them and read books with them or do crossword puzzles, watch shows with them, just different things.

“Hold their hand.”

So many of her patients passed while she was there.

“I’ve been there for a lot of people when they took their last breaths. … I’ve seen it all,” she says.

“So seeing how some of those patients were treated and how the doctors would treat the nurses and different stuff like that, I was like this isn’t why I got into this.

“I got into it to help people because I cared.”


Kenzie would go on to find work as a veterinary technician, stripper and as a server and bartender at Buffalo Wild Wings.

She thought about going to veterinarian school because she loves animals.

“And then I was like maybe I’ll just go back to doing phlebotomy, which is drawing blood,” Kenzie says.

One night she was dancing at The Doll House gentlemen’s club in Tampa, Fla., when a feature entertainer who was an adult star came in.

“And I see her and maybe she was intoxicated at the time but she just looked very happy and free,” Kenzie says. “So I’m at this club and I notice how free and open this woman is. That’s how I want to feel. That is what I want.

“I want to be happy like that about my work and feel free. I’ve never felt free in my life.”

So she went online and started researching agencies before getting up the courage to send her nudes to her first agency. They liked her and one week later, she flew to California for the first time.

“This place was such a culture shock for me,” she says.

“I’ll never forget my first time. Because I went to Hollywood my second day I was here and when you’re from a small town and you’re kind of sheltered, there’s so many things I had never seen.

“I’d never even seen a Jewish person until I met my husband.”

On her fifth day she performed in her first sex scene—for Diabolic Video with veteran stud Mark Wood under the direction of seasoned shooter Mike Quasar.

“I was so nervous going in. I was shaking like a leaf,” Kenzie recalls.

“I was excited but I was just very nervous because I had never had sex on camera before. I was totally comfortable being naked. I had already been dancing for a very long time.

“We did the scene and Mark was so nice. He was telling me, ‘OK, during the scene this is what we’re going to do.’

“The whole time I don’t even think we cut. And I have a really good memory. It just flowed.

“It was just kind of like we’re dancing. We’re two dancers dancing. And at the end of it I was like, this is my shit. This is fun. And I just felt so free.”


Wood, who now is an AVN Hall of Fame member in his 26th year in adult, says what he remembers most about his first scene with Taylor was her personality.

“I do remember working with her for Diabolic for Mike Quasar,” Wood tells AVN. “I just remember she was brand new… I don’t remember if she told me that was her first scene or not, but she was very nice. She’s always been nice. We hired her for our own [LeWood] productions multiple times.

“She just was pleasant and nice to be around, down to earth. Sometimes you’ve gotta find a common ground with the new girl to just connect, but I didn’t really have to that time because she’s just so down to earth.”

Less than two months after that scene, Taylor sold her belongings in Tampa and moved to LA.

And now when Taylor walks into gentlemen’s clubs there are pictures of her on the wall and her name appears in all caps on the marquee because she is the adult star feature entertainer for the weekend.

She started feature dancing in 2019 at Rick’s Cabaret in Pittsburgh, Pa., where she’ll be returning this fall. Before Covid hit Taylor featured in a different city every weekend for five straight months.

Taylor admits there are times when she's on her way to another feature engagement when she reflects on how much everything has changed.

“It’s kind of hard to not think about it because I get to these clubs and I’m on billboards on the highways, I’m on the sign outside, I walk in the door and there’s huge posters or cutouts of me,” Kenzie says. “But I will say I think it helps my mentality that I used to be a house dancer because I know when I go there that’s not my home. I’m walking into their home.

“It’s their territory and it’s an honor that I get to be there.”

It’s why she always talks to everyone at the club when she arrives, tips the dancers who are on the floor and encourages the patrons to do the same.


Dave Michaels, owner of the Florida-based booking agency, A-List Features, tells AVN Taylor’s reputation precedes her.

“It’s been my honor to represent Kenzie for feature dancing for over four years,” Michaels says. “She's a perennial club favorite with a solid track record of entertaining fans and packing venues. I look forward to an even better run in 2024!”

Taylor says that without question the best is yet to come as she looks toward the final stretch of this year and beyond.

Kenzie wants to continue producing and directing—she’s already helmed story-driven projects for Next Door Studios and called the shots for Kenzie Loves Girls, an all-girl movie for Wicked Pictures that was released in April.

“All of the scenes from that I’m in it, but not actually ‘in it in it,’” she says, adding that she was inspired by John Stagliano’s notorious Buttman character in parts. “I talk to the girls or you can see my hands or I’m in it for a little bit and then out.”

Meanwhile, the ambitious performer in July announced that her new merchandise line from Inside The Drop was available for pre-orders. The line features a collection of clothing, skateboard decks, poster designs, puzzles, air fresheners, coasters and more.

Taylor tells AVN whether it’s Feelz, her branded merch or anything else that she won’t put her name on something until she can say that “I one-thousand percent love this.”

If anything, what she’s learned from being a business owner is the importance of “patience.”

“Patience is key when you’re launching a company, especially in the sexual wellness realm of things,” she says. “Because it’s never like you launch it and then there’s millions and millions of sales. It’s literally a slow process and you just have to be patient and you will see results.

“I guess that’s probably the No. 1 challenging thing for me was having the patience of knowing that hey, you’re doing everything you can and everything’s going to be OK.”




Photography by Siren Obscura