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Posts Tagged ‘latinas’

A new Bilingual/Bicultural Latina in Hollywood

In celebrities, latinas on April 4, 2011 at 7:45 pm

This past Friday I was fortunate enough to attend the red carpet event in LA for the world premiere of “Cougar’s, Inc.” a fairly low budget film with big name actors such as Denise Richards, Jim Belushi, Sarah Hyland (from Modern Family), Kathryn Morris (from Cold Case), Kyle Gallner (from Nightmare on Elm Street), among others. I was very proud to know that among all of these big time names was also my sister- a rising star and only Latina, Catalina Rodriguez.

Catalina was born in Colombia and was raised in Miami. She’s made a career in modeling and TV commercials for major brands, but her

Catalina and Dayanara Torres

passion is set on acting. Some of you may remember her from the CW’s “Watch Over Me” where she played the sexy villain Sasha, alongside Dayanara Torres. She’s also been in smaller movies such as “Spin” alongside Shalim (Charytin’s son) and Fernando Carrillo and has also finished shooting a movie with Ving Rhames, Steven Bauer (Scarface), and Hemky Madera (Weeds) set to release in 2012.

Working in advertising in New York City and knowing the growth and flux of the Hispanic market in the U.S. has meant

Catalina with the cast of "Spin"

opportunities for Latinos across all categories. Here I was seeing the impact first hand, as my sister was finally in a movie that may hit the big screen in a few cities and is already On Demand (via Time Warner channel 1000). I obviously had a ton of questions for her. Here’s my conversation with her as she’s getting her hair and makeup done for the red carpet…

Cata (as I like to call her), how much fun was it to shoot alongside Denise Richards?

On the set of "Cougars, Inc" with Denise Richards

I had a blast! The entire cast was great. Denise is very nice and down-to-earth, she’s also very funny. I also had a great time ad-libbing with Chris Murphy (Eddie Murphy’s son), he’s got great energy and while off-set he’s quite and tranquil; on-set he completely transforms and really comes to life.

Your character in this movie is loud, extroverted and has a heavy accent. Being a bilingual/bicultural Latina that speaks English without an accent, did it bother you to have to portray the stereotypical Latina that has an accent on the big screen?

To be honest women such as Sofia Vergara, Penelope Cruz, and Salma Hayek have worked very hard to open these doors for me. I’m an actress that plays characters and Dominica (my character) is this woman…not a stereotype but a testament to all of those women out there who live in the states and have an accent. I came across women like this all of my life growing up in Miami so I wouldn’t consider them a stereotype but a part of our Latino mix in the U.S. Think about it, if I wouldn’t have played her somebody else would have and I’m just blessed to have gotten the part!

Do you think with the amount of Latinos influencing America, roles for Latinos in Hollywood will begin to change even more?

Cougars, Inc Red Carpet Premiere (L to R) Graham Larson, Kathryn Morris, Kyle Gallner, Ashton Larsen, and Catalina

Sure! I think we’ve been seeing that evolution happen already. We now have women like Eva Longoria, Jennifer Lopez, America Ferrera and Eva Mendes playing women on the small and big screen, not playing Latinas with an accent. They just happen to be Latinas adding a whole new dimension, talent and exotic look to Hollywood.

How hard has it been to break into Hollywood as a Latina?

Don’t get me wrong it hasn’t been easy. I still remember the words one of my acting coaches told me once when I first got to LA “Catalina, beautiful woman in Hollywood don’t play girl next door roles.” I was grateful that he put in that category of beautiful woman but now that just means I have to work even harder to not get type-casted because as we all know, there are many more girl next door roles in Hollywood than lead roles. The best part of all is that I have an amazing family that is an incredible support team – they all keep me positive and looking ahead.

Also, Hollywood is getting much more open-minded, I remember only a few years back I wouldn’t even get a second-call back because my last name was Rodriguez.

Have you thought about changing it?

Yeah I won’t lie, it’s crossed my mind. But at the same time why would I want to change what differentiates me?

After a few hours of more chat, Cata is ready to put on her dress and leaves us with this…

Catalina on the cover of "Cougars, Inc" - she's wearing the red dress

To all the Latinas going after their dream all I have to say is don’t give up! I don’t mean to sound like a cliche, b ut if you really want it than go for it regardless of what anyone says but get good at it – you need to master your craft. I do that everyday and feel great about myself knowing I am doing everything I can to achieve my dream…the worst thing that can happen is asking yourself in the future ‘what if’ or having any regrets for not being proactive.

I feel good about this chat and can only be proud of my sister. Regardless of whether she is playing a stereotype or not she’s rolling with the punches and beginning to make a name for herself. I can only imagine what Hollywood will look like in the year 2050 when Latinos are supposed to represent a projected 29% of the population. In the mean time, I’m excited for what is ahead and the doors we Latinos are paving for ourselves here in the U.S. everyday.

PS: You can follow Catalina Rodriguez on twitter @crodriguez1227 and on facebook: catalina rodriguez


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Before you follow your passion, find it

In tips on February 6, 2011 at 4:28 pm

America is known as the land of the free. The place to achieve the American dream. The place we are led to believe where we can reach out and touch the sky. But in reality how many people do we know that are actually doing exactly what they love and not just trying to get by?

America is at a turning point. With the amount of unemployed people, a distrust for big companies or the “corporate ladder” and a new generation of Millennials beginning to lead the way…people are turning to doing those things that make them feel good about themselves. Not because they have to but because they want to.

Many people are making careers out of their hobbies and many are changing careers in search of a purpose.

This 2011, while it is unrealistic to ditch your job in search of what many might consider a pipe dream, try to find time to do what you love aside from your 9-5. Whether that is helping people by volunteering, writing that book or starting that blog you’ve always wanted, or perhaps teaching others a skill/talent. You will notice that while this may not make money at first it will compensate you in other ways that will make you feel great about yourself.

Don’t believe me? Even magazines like the October 2010 issue of Inc. have portrayed great stories where people are living their dream and are truly going after their passion but even more incredible…they are making a living out of it. Many believe following their dream or passion is a gutsy and risky thing done primarily by entrepreneurs.

While this may be easy advice for many focused Latinas to follow, the concern lies in the larger amount of Latinas who don’t even know what their passion actually is. Here are four tips that can guide you and get you started in finding your passion.

1.    Ask yourself, what are you really good at? Or what really excites you? Is there something that you have
secretly dreamed of but have never really pursued?

  • Perhaps there is a topic you find yourself reading a lot about

2.    Find the time to bring that passion you have just identified to life. “I don’t have time” is just an excuse.

3.    Get better at it. Practice. Experiment. Volunteer somewhere to perfect it and attend seminars. Reading
books/articles on it can only make you better.

4.    Once you feel comfortable. Try to make a profit or a business out of it.  Just like Confucius once said:
“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

To sum it up, there are many ways, dreams and roads open to you to fulfill your desires in creating a better life for yourself and achieve happiness. You just need to identify those signs and allow them to enter your life.

The bottom line is in your commitment to invest in yourself, your access to the necessary resources and tools, and your continued passion. As long as you have those, anything is possible!

Sex: The Dominant Taboo of our Culture

In sexuality on June 30, 2010 at 12:28 pm

I’ve always asked myself why many Hispanic parents have a stigma around talking to their kids about sexuality and its sister topic contraception…it’s almost taboo to do so in our culture. And yet we fail to see that this is affecting our youth and future tremendously, not only within our own families but as a U.S. ethnicity as a whole.

More and more Latinas under 17 years of age are walking the hallways of schools in America with uncertainty as to whether they will be able to graduate in time or if their baby will beat them to the punch. And that’s because Hispanic teens now have the highest teenage birth rates of any other major ethnic group in the U.S.

This continues to happen because a simple conversation that should be happening at home…isn’t. When I say a simple conversation, I mean simple…really. Why can’t we be upfront about a topic that changes the lives of so many people? And yet, when we look at novelas or all the Spanish channels on television we are surrounded by a culture that highly promotes sensuality and sexuality as a normal way of living our day-to-day.  To have women half naked and story-lines that are highly passionate seem like a huge disconnect to me. Doesn’t that seem like a huge disconnect to you? It may seem like make-believe stories to you but they might be more realistic than you think to your kids.

This lack of communication between parents and kids has various explanations:

  • The degree of education parents have towards the subject
  • The number of topics that are up for discussion in a family environment (while every single topic is up for discussion, “that one”, isn’t one of them)
  • The families’ socioeconomic status plays a big role in the lack of communication and acts as a predictor of early sexual activity and teen pregnancy
  • Going about it the wrong way and focusing on the negative “you better not get pregnant” rather than advising them on how to protect themselves

This of course leads our precious kids in the hands of their clueless friends, boyfriends or hopefully a clinic.

Obviously it is easier said than done and while I am not a parent yet I still believe having this discussion with your kids at an early age is important.  We need to stop thinking “my daughter isn’t easy” and “that will never happen to my family” because that’s just the wrong way of going about it.  Life always throws surprises and twists that we didn’t expect so it’s best if we are at least prepared for them. In fact, I believe denial is probably one of the main drivers as to why parents don’t approach their children sooner or at all about the subject. Kids nowadays are experimenting with sexual activities at age 14 or younger…so, don’t think they are little angels that aren’t ready to have the so called “talk”.

Let’s shape up. Let’s communicate. The worst thing that can happen is that they are more aware and logic only tells us that the more they know about the subject the more they can avoid it altogether or make smarter choices. Given that we are the largest minority in this country we should be raising smart and informed leaders rather than allowing kids to have and raise kids; since teen mothers are less likely to complete high school (only one-third receive a high school diploma) and only 1.5% have a college degree by age 30.

Our future is on the line and we have a chance to change it.

“Marketing to Latinas” Conference: An Overview

In conferences on June 14, 2010 at 6:37 am

This past Thursday I had the opportunity of going to a Latinvision conference about “Marketing to Latinas” it was a great event full of stats, insights and great information about the future and opportunity of Latinas in this country.

I love going to these events because not only do I get to see first hand what industry leaders have to say about our market but I also get to share a synopsis of the insights and findings with you.

The first and my favorite panel was “Marketing to Latina women of the New Age” with the following panelists:

  • Ruth Gaviria, CEO, Hispanic Media Venture, Meredith Corporation
  • Olivia Maloney, Director, US Hispanic Sales & Solutions, AOL Latino
  • Andiara Peterle, CEO, Bolsa de Mulher
  • Moderator: Laura Martinez, Founder,
    Mi Blog es tu blog

What was neat is that I didn’t feel alone when the moderator, Laura Martinez, said…“this morning I updated my twitter and facebook, told people about
my blog post, all before I even had my coffee.”
I could definitely relate and that’s when she said that many Latinas are doing the same around the U.S.

In fact, the discussion revolved around the need of providing appropriate online content for Latinas in the U.S. that appeals and is relevant to their needs. Andiara Peterle, CEO, Bolsa de Mulher in Brazil mentioned how her company had just conducted a proprietary study to understand Latina women in various countries. “You would think that women in every country should be targeted the same way with the same content when in fact there are so many differences to understand in order to truly relate to them.”

For example the study showed how Latinas in:

  • Argentina want to know more about e-commerce, shopping – especially social shopping – where they can share with others what they want to buy before they buy it.
  • Brazilian women want to have more social networks to communicate with friends.
  • While Mexican women don’t want to connect with brands but do want brands to sponsor the content they read especially the videos they see.
  • U.S. Latinas just want to be informed overall – they like to be in the know – and therefore crave more content

The new generation of Latinas (in their 20s) are becoming very similar in their needs to teenagers because they are more content creators than the mainstream or general market (or what we call white America). This is due to the way that technology is breaking economic and educational barriers. “If you can read and write you can communicate with everyone.” – Ruth Gaviria

The key is to understand women deeply via research and provide solutions with content, special products, projects and advertising. Such is the case with topics such as sex. Not all women want to hear about sex in the same manner. For example:

  • Argentinians  – you can’t talk to them about sex if you don’t talk about love and relationship
  • Brazilians – to them, sex is like talking about health – they are very open to the topic but not in a sexy way
  • Mexicans – they want to know about sex but you can’t go too far, as they don’t want to know about the details

“This just shows how it is so important to listen and understand in order to be relevant. That’s when you know you can’t reach women in the same way in all countries.” – Andiara Peterle, CEO, Bolsa de Mulher

So, is this the reason why sometimes brands have a hard time reaching us Latinas in the U.S.? Is it because we are such an array of cultures in one that they think that they are reaching us because they are talking to us in Spanish alone? or because they are showing us in a family environment?

And that’s when the next panel started “The Power of Latina Women” that showed how Latinas aren’t as traditional as we are usually portrayed in commercials…

This is what Leyla Ahuila, Sr. Analyst of Multicultural Reports at Mintel discussed when she gave us an overview of Latinas in the U.S.:

  • By 2050, Latinas comprise a quarter of the U.S. female population – Latinas are moms of 25% of the people being born in the U.S. On average, Latinas are having 3 children vs. 2.8 of African-Americans and they’re having more girls than boys.
  • Latinas are younger than non-Latinas – The majority of Latinas are under 45 years old and therefore their purchasing power is on the rise since many of them are still growing up
  • A larger percentage of Latinas are not married – it’s not about the traditional mom, dad and kids as they usually portray us. Almost half are not married (46.9%) and the good news is these numbers aren’t driven by teen pregnancy, although many of these unmarried Latinas could have children
  • Latinas are attending college at higher rates than Latinos – they have an ambitious mindset and are highly entrepreneurial Latinas are hitting the books, in fact, from 1996 to 2006 there has been an increase 222% of Latina college graduates. There has also been a 307% increase in masters degrees and 121% increase in Latina owned businesses.
  • A profile in her Social Networking Sites is her most used accessory – Latinas are spending more time on social networking sites than non-Latinas except for playing games online. They spend 1 hour and 11 minutes more on social networks (while also blogging and commenting online) than the general market

When it comes to Latina attitudes and mindset:

  • They have contradictory feelings regarding their bicultural upbringing – old world (of their parents) and new world values (from the U.S.)
  • Latinas are happier than non Latinas but Foreign Born Latinas harbor more unhappiness – this is due to their greater pressure to make it in the U.S. and succeed for their families…adding to their unhappiness
  • And, they are higher risk takers, more likely to try something new

So, after learning all of these stats I wonder if more and more advertisers (such as myself) are going to shape it up and begin to talk to us in a relevant manner beyond the family of four.

This is the reason I started this blog. Not only to get you up to speed with how advertisers are seeing us but to have a conversation with you about what you care about. So feel free let me know what you’re into and I’ll make sure to find out some info. or stat. and write about it.

Latinas: 4 simple tips to think about

In tips on June 12, 2010 at 5:29 am

I had the chance to attend a Latinvision conference this past Thursday where the theme was “Marketing to Latinas” (in another post I will tell you all about the conference).

As I was listening to one of the panelists; Leylha Ahuile, Senior Analyst of Multicultural Reports at Mintel talk about the importance of Latinas, their buying power, their successes and overview of their importance in the Latino market…I was captivated by a specific statistic – From 1996-2006 Latina college graduates has increased by 222%, superseding that of Latinos! Wow, I thought that was fantastic news and only hope it continues to increase.

I’m not here to talk about the importance of education and lecture you about how you should finish school…but as wonderful as that statistic sounds there are still only about 12.6% of Latinas that have graduated college in the U.S.  I know life is hard, things get in the way, family takes priority but as the first in my immediate family to graduate college I thought I could take this opportunity to share 4 simple tips that have helped me tremendously along the way, with the hope that they will also help you.

1. Life is about who you know – Go network! Haven’t you noticed this is the reason sorority’s and fraternity’s exist in college? Sure there’s a ton of parties and these are friends that make you feel less awkward and provide for great company and experiences while you’re in school (sometimes away from loved ones)…but the most important part of these organizations is the long-lasting bond – you have a brotherhood/sisterhood for life and this translates to the real world (unfortunately when I was going to college I didn’t get that and felt I didn’t need to pay to have friends). When the booze is over and everyone has careers and you’re faced with getting a real job…how do you think some kids get into great companies, and positions in the U.S.? It’s all about who you know…whether it’s through nepotism or a favor these people will always have the upper hand and all it took was to build a relationship while in school. So, all I’m saying is…translate this to your day-to-day, join a club, an organization, a cause, and network with people, exchange contact information and most importantly make sure your voice is heard. Don’t be shy, show them you have brains and they will not only respect you for that but most importantly they will remember you!

2. Learn to write well! Out of all the subjects you could possibly study in school the most important has got to be the written word. This has got to be the most basic learning skill and yet some 30 million adults have “below basic” skills in prose where they can’t write a complete sentence without grammatical errors, misspellings or have a complete thought.  You might think only journalists, lawyers, authors, people who write press releases are the ones who need to write well…but really? If you haven’t noticed already all the digital world that surrounds us today revolves around writing…from social networking sites, twitter, blogs, texting, emails…it’s all about writing! And this translates into your everyday when writing an important document for your boss, for your kids’ school, or even when writing your resume. When you write, you have the opportunity of showing people your distinct personality…whether you are funny or clever you can take people on a fun journey with a ton of words…but you need to write well first. Don’t be scared, it takes practice (I’m practicing everyday with this blog) but this can only help you advance and excel in life.

3. Learn to be a good communicator – Beyond the written word, there is nothing better than extending this skill to the way you speak. Whether it’s for one person or a hundred people, whether it’s for your child or spouse or to the President. The best communicators know how to tell good stories and people stop to listen. This is the reason we love artists that tell great stories with their lyrics but criticize those who fail to inspire us. A good communicator exudes confidence and takes this skill to every aspect of their personal lives. This isn’t just for that perfect interview or that presentation you had to do for work…I’m talking about your day-to-day conversations with your loved ones. How do you think marriages survive? It’s all about communicating.

4. Get an attitude adjustment – So you might be a passionate, opinionated Latina but there are ways to not come off as too aggressive, intense or even annoying. Think about it, the majority of our time we either spend it at work or in school and we’re dealing with the same people everyday. Why not have a good attitude? Corporate America and many other businesses in the U.S. prefer to hire someone they will get along with before hiring the smartest person. When you have a good attitude, people feel it, it becomes part of the energy you radiate to others and this energy only makes more people want to be around you. We already have enough bad things happening in this world for you to add more to it. Don’t get me wrong, everyone has their days, but really? Why do you need to share this negative energy with everyone, all the time? This doesn’t get you anywhere and only closes doors.

These seem like basic simple tips you probably already knew but try to put them into practice and you’ll see they are life changing. I’m serious. Good luck Latinas, there’s a whole world out there that needs us in the mix and using these tips can only help us be better and make a difference.

Catch me cause YOU can!

In technology on June 10, 2010 at 6:35 am

Gone are the days when you used to get a few phone calls for your b-day and waited to maybe meet the day of the celebration to be congratulated in person. With so many ways to get in contact with people today there’s almost no excuse to say “oh, I called but couldn’t reach you or your voicemail was full”.  Nowadays, it’s as if there is no excuse to forget a b-day, period.  In fact, this past weekend as I celebrated my b-day, I couldn’t believe the number of ways in which I was able to receive birthday wishes; from txts, to facebook comments, music videos and virtual cards, from voicemails to e-mails, from tweets, and even on the blog…and you know, I felt pretty darn special to say the least. As I counted, more than 100 people wished me a fabulous day…100+ people!! That’s outrageous. Friends from high school, family from Miami, Colombia, colleagues from my current and previous workplaces from all over the country, college friends, friends of friends…you name it, they all came through.

It’s as if this digital world we now live in has allowed us to truly feel the love from others even more today regardless of distance. For this reason, communication and technology have become paramount in the millions of Latinos and Latinas living in this country. Between skype, txting, BBM, e-mail, and all the various social networking sites from myspace, facebook, hi5 where sending pictures and videos is the norm; this is what keeps us closer to our loved ones abroad. This is technology at its best and it comes natural to Hispanics because our average age is 28 compared with 36.8 years for the population as a whole, meaning we are the youngest segment in the U.S. allowing us to be early adopters of all this great technology.

And, even with all this technology we’re notorious for finding loopholes too. For example, I’ve encountered people who put their calling card phone number on their “fave five or friends and family plan” so they don’t get charged those minutes. Stats from a latest 2010 Synovate study show us that 32% of Hispanic adults (over 18 yrs.) own smartphones of which 46% own blackberries, and we know that those who have blackberry’s primarily use them so they can BBM their family and friends abroad for FREE! And it shouldn’t come to a surprise that 40% of Hispanics are skipping from paying internet at home and are preferring to access it on their cell phones instead (that means only one bill).

Hey, we are resourceful but mainly because at the end of all these loopholes there’s an inherent need to connect, share and interact with people who mean the world to us. It’s about not sacrificing the stories and moments we might be missing out on because we don’t live in the same city, town or even country, even if that just means wishing someone special a great happy birthday!

Panel: American Beauty “Redefined”

In beauty on May 27, 2010 at 5:00 am

What does Beauty really mean in the U.S. today? It seemed like only yesterday when beauty meant having blue eyes, blonde hair and a natural look but with the proliferation of diversity in America this notion of beauty has really taken a 180 turn. And, we’re not just talking about women of Hispanic and African American descent…men are also impacting this conversation.

So, when we talk about beauty is it mainly for ourselves? Do we do it for others? How much do others’ opinions matter in our daily routine? And, does the definition change depending on who we are with? These are just some of the questions that will be discussed during a panel I will be moderating today, at the offices of GlobalHue in New York.

Tomorrow, I will write all about it here…show some pics. and summarize how companies and experts are trying to overcome the challenge to improve targeting to the various types of new and savvier consumers of color in the market, who vary race-wise, attitude-wise, class-wise and language-wise and who are having a major influence and impact on the beauty category and in America as a whole.

After all, because multicultural women/men run the gamut of looks ranging from European, Mestizo, to Afro-Latino, and many shades in between, it’s not always easy for companies to hone in on the specific needs of their customers.

Panelists joining on the discussion are:

Lucia Ballas-Traynor, Publisher of People en Espanol
Jackie Gomez, Celebrity Makeup Artist for Beyonce and Zoe Saldana
Catherine Callahan, Multicultural Actress and Model
Cesar Ramirez, Celebrity Hairdresser

So, if you have any specific questions you want me to ask…go ahead, ask away – you have until 4pm, and I’ll make sure to include it in the conversation.

Daisy Fuentes on Beauty

In beauty on May 20, 2010 at 11:15 am

@the Siempre Mujer Beauty Panel

We Latinas have a very special relationship with our appearance. I may not be as drastic as my abuela who puts lipstick before answering the phone or like my mom who NEVER leaves the house without looking fabulous (I’m talking about full makeup to get the mail- yes, the mail that is outside of her house, 20 ft. from the door). But, I still know the big beauty no, no’s I was taught throughout the years. So, it was quite ironic when I hurriedly put my makeup on during my regular subway ride to work, when I realized, today I wasn’t going straight to work…I was headed to a panel about “Latinas and Beauty” hosted by the magazine Siempre Mujer and moderated by Ruth Gaviria.

In the panel were experts on the subject:

– Ursula Carranza – Beauty Editor from Siempre Mujer
– Leonardo Rocco – legend in the hair design industry and spokesperson for Suave
– Dr. Alicia Barba M.D. – dermatologist and Harvard graduate
– Kristyn Page – Multicultural Director for Macy’s
– and the one and only Daisy Fuentes – Model and TV personality

While the panel acknowledged many of the facts that we Latinas already know about ourselves when it comes to beauty- like the fact that beauty starts at a very young age for us, that beauty doesn’t stop for Latinas of any age, and that we are obsessed with our appearance…I was more enthused with the fun anecdotes, quotes, stats and tips the panelists shared with all of us.

Here are the main highlights:

When asked if Latinas are brand loyal…
“They’re very brand loyal, but you can’t take that loyalty for granted. They are savvy, and they do a lot of research so you need to keep the products fresh and new. But most importantly, you need to engage with them in a conversation.” – Kristyn Page, Multicultural Dir. Macy’s

When it comes to price points Latinas spend on average $60 p/mth on beauty products vs. $22 from non-Latinas.

What is a good hair day?
It seems long hair is associated with sex appeal and while some women want to follow the new trends or go for shorter hair…in essence they go for the long hair “maybe it’ because they think men like long hair – that seems to be their push.” – Rocco

And when Daisy was asked whether she had bad hair days, I loved her reply, “I can crank an afro like it’s nobody’s business.” She went on to say that while she looks for healthy products she won’t go for the all-natural ones because, “I want the products to work.”

Panelists in Tribeca Cinemas

What are the hottest brands right now?
Lancome – while it has the right colors and shades that cater to Latinas it will be releasing a new line very soon specifically for Latinas with more intense colors, shades, that are shine free.  They are also training their staff to understand the multicultural customer where they will provide samples, have make-up and educational sessions.

Then the recommendations became more personalized based on their business sense…

  • The top selling brand at Macy’s with Latinas is Clinique.
  • Rocco mentioned brands such as L’Oreal, Rene Furterer, and Bumble and Bumble as being great products, but was very clear that it all depends on the look and style each person has.
  • Daisy mentioned the growth of some high-end brands such as Kerastase, and Moroccan Oil as being excellent
  • Dr. Barba M.D. mentioned the top products used by the patients in her practice are Clinique, Olay, Neutrogena and Cetaphil

And when it comes to fragrances…

“Latinas are not the unscented variant”

They mentioned that is was to no surprise that Latinas want to know the latest and greatest and go for the newest prestige brands.

“It’s not about treating Latinas differently than everybody else, we want to be included in the overall message, we’re not aliens. We just like to be acknowledged and addressed. My focus is to create a good product and therefore everyone (including Latinas) will like it.” – Daisy, on her experience when launching her fragrance brand DiaNoche at kohl’s

Is Beauty for themselves (women) or for men?
It’s impossible to ignore that most women are trying to look good for men. But it’s all about our self-esteem, “many Latinas who don’t feel great about themselves feel that by sticking themselves with needles as a way of self-punishment will make them feel better. But, I make sure to advise them properly to help them realize they don’t need as much as they want.” – Dr. Barba M.D.

So what advice can they give Latinas?

  • Don’t wear too much make-up – you don’t want to cover up your true self. Less is more!
  • Beauty is about confidence and that way you radiate
  • Embrace your age – women shouldn’t stop celebrating birthdays
  • True beauty comes from the inside…it might sound cliche but “no one has ever seen a woman who has ugly thoughts who is beautiful” – Daisy Fuentes

Overall, I was glad to be a part of some great discussion, some good laughs but most importantly the chance to get two autographed copies of Daisy Fuentes’ latest book “Unforgettable You.”

The Signed Copies of "Unforgettable You"

All you have to do to get a hold of one of these is to provide a comment to this blog post (opinion, your own advice, your beauty regimen…anything concerning your beauty experience) and you will automatically be part of the drawing.

The two lucky winners will be chosen Friday at 1pm, so stay tuned!

Flesh-o-meter

In sexuality, tips on May 19, 2010 at 4:21 am

As I browsed through the web trying to look for a good picture to add to my blog about yesterday’s article on “It’s Latina time” I noticed that when I Googled “latinas” there was a trend on the images that were found:

Almost all the pics looked like the one above. Believe me, I get it, we Latinas are not only voluptous, have curves but there is a sensuality and sexiness to us that not many ethnicities possess.  We also over-index on cosmetics, personal care, perfumes, and hair care products. We care about our beauty. WE are obsessed with vanity. And, I’m not saying that all Latinas are sexy but what I am saying is that there are distinct characteristics about us that differentiate us from other cultures.

But, when is sexiness treading a fine line with sluttiness?

In my mind the difference is clear. Sexiness is a mindset. It’s in the way we walk, in the way we move our hips, in the way we wear our clothes, in the way we dance, and of course in the way men look at us. So why do so many of our role models wear less and less clothes on Hispanic TV, especially on nights like Premio Lo Nuestro or Latin Grammy’s?

Don’t get me wrong I would love to have a body like the girls in the picture above but I wouldn’t want to show my body like that everywhere. And, yes although I have been guilty of showing a ton of cleavage at a few parties (hey, my bosom is hereditary), I realized I did it more when I was living in Miami – where I was surrounded by more Latinas. And now, that I live in Manhattan and I am furthering along in my career and hanging out with more gringas…Am I changing? Am I just getting more professional? or am I just adopting new ways?

I’m not sure but maybe that’s what happens to all those celebrities in Univision and Telemundo. They live from event to event with the same other voluptuous celebrities like themselves and therefore find it normal to wear less and less clothes- and they find themselves competing. I mean, just the opposite happened to Sofia Vergara when she arrived in Hollywood – to make it in the Anglo world she was advised to get her breast size reduced!

So, I guess my advice is, next time you’re headed to an event think of the audience that will be at the party. And then look at the amount of flesh you are showing. The more blanquitas or gueritas the less flesh, the more Latinos more flesh…between you and I we can call it the flesh-o-meter, just remember the choice is up to you.

It’s Latina time

In Uncategorized on May 18, 2010 at 4:56 am

Today I came across this quote:

“The XIX century was known as the European century; the XX as the American one. Now the XXI century will be remembered as the Century of Women.” – Tsvi Bisk, Center for Strategic Futurist Thinking, 2008

As a woman, it’s pretty inspiring but if I had anything else to add I would say at the end: “and Latinas will have a lot to do with that.”

This is because it shouldn’t come as a surprise to us that by the year 2050 the number of Latinas in the U.S. will increase by 150%, compared with 45% for the total female population (U.S. Census Data 2006, 2004 estimate). This will also mean that Latinas spending power will increase, marketers are going to want to talk to us in English and Spanish, and we’ll have the power to decide!

What an empowering thought. That’s why this is our opportunity to change the way we are seen (if it isn’t a positive outlook).

For example we’ll have the power to debunk current stats and even stereotypes that we are faced with today.

  • Let’s show America that we do go to college and graduate and not just drop out of school to get blue collar jobs
  • Let’s show our families that we don’t have to have children in high school or even in our early 20s – it’s okay to wait a little longer
  • Let’s chase our dreams and start-up our own companies and establish new career ventures
  • Let’s take advantage that for the most part many of us are bilingual and can cater to a larger audience

But let’s stay true to who we are as Latinas, with our roots and values the way our moms taught us so that we can pass this down from generation to generation. I know it’s easier said than done. But, I’m an example and I know it can be done. Come on women, together we can do it!