Cardi Saved $35k in Singles By the Time She Was 22, And Other Things You Should Know About Cardi B Before She Made It

iamcardib / Instagram

There’s no question that Cardi B is the hardest working bruja out there and you either love her or hate her. Cardi B has the true rags to riches story and she didn’t wait for a Prince Charming to sweep her off her feet. She made money move on her own right.

While Cardi B is totally open about her life–when she’s tired, gassy and hungry–on social media, she’s professionally made up almost all the time for work. Before Cardi B got famous (and before she deleted and reopened her Instagram account), she was just as open about her life. Here’s all the throwbacks and facts about pre-famous Cardi B to inspire you through your dreams.

Today, the 26-year-old is a spokesperson for Pepsi.

CREDIT: @pepsi / Twitter

Which is kind of a huge deal. She’s in the same ranks of icons like Britney Spears and Michael Jackson.

But before she was Cardi B, she was Belcalis Marlenis Almánzar.

CREDIT: @Estrellitzz / Twitter

Her nickname growing up was “Bacardi,” possibly because she was a fan of the rum. That got shortened to “Cardi B” and the rest is history.

Her father, Carlos, brings the Dominican out in her.

CREDIT: “Cardi B family – father Carlos Almanzar” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

She also has six half-siblings from her father’s side. Her parents split up when she was ten years old.

Her mother is Afro-Trinidadian.

CREDIT: “Cardi B with mom and sister Hennessy” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

Cardi and her sister, Hennessy grew up in the Highbridge barrio of the South Bronx. They spent a lot of their time with their paternal abuelo in Washington Heights.

Her sister was named after the rum their dad was drinking on the way to the hospital where she was born.

CREDIT: “Cardi B with sister Hennessy Carolina” Digital Image. BodyHeightWeight. 26 March 2019.

The two are tight. Hennessy identifies as queer and is married. Cardi has spoken out in support of the LGBT community (and her sister).

The two were raised Catholic and Cardi has credits God for the guidance in her life.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

You’ll see it on her Instagram profile to this day: “GOD IS GREAT 🙏🏼”

Cardi joined the Bloods when she was 16 years old.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

People started calling her a poser, so she went to Twitter in 2017 to proudly admit that she was for real in the infamous gang. Since then, she’s made it super clear that she doesn’t encourage anyone joining gangs.

Her first job was at a supermarket in Lower Manhattan.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Her manager of several years fired her and told her she should just become a stripper. Her next thought must have been “damn straight.”

Cardi started stripping at 19 years old and credits it with “saving her life.”

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She was in an abusive relationship and was looking for financial independence to get out. She’s her own knight in shining armor.

There are rumors that Sheck Wes was abusive to Cardi B when they were dating.

CREDIT: @RSpotlights / Twitter

This picture of the two before they both got famous. One woman accused Sheck Wes of stalking and attacking her and her friends, and he’s denied the allegations.

Cardi was able to save $35,000 in singles by the time she was 22 years old.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Cardi has made it super clear that she turned to stripping to get out of poverty. It was a decision made out of a desperation she doesn’t wish on anyone, but it saved her life.

After she started stripping, she was able to afford to go back to school.

CREDIT: @chamoniIIe / Twitter

Though she admits that she had trouble in school as a kid because she couldn’t stop telling jokes. Still, the money got her through community college for a few years.

She’s super open about the plastic surgery she had to elevate her stripping career.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

Cardi has said that she didn’t think people went to strip clubs to see people “who walked off the street.” We all already know: “The only thing fake is the boobs.”

Cardi has opened up about a very painful, illegal experience getting a basement ‘Brazilian butt lift.’

CREDIT: @badchickz100 / Twitter

This surgery is named the most fatal surgery in America, and Cardi had it done in a basement without any anesthesia. She passed out from the pain. When she went back for more, she found out that someone had died on the table the week before and the woman selling the injections was in jail for manslaughter.

Cardi retired ‘early’ from stripping for her next venture into Love & Hip Hop.

CREDIT: @GlobalGrind / Twitter

She had planned to retire from stripping when she was 25 years old, but retired early for her next professional gig, Love & Hip Hop.

She used the money from LHH to “fix her teeth”.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She said it cost about the same as a luxury size SUV, but that it was real worth it. This image is her showing off her pearly whites on an Instagram story from back in the day.

Cardi’s been going to Nails on 7th since she was a teenager.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

She still goes there to get her nails done to this day, and her fame has made business boom for the women-owned nail salon.

Cardi’s been educating people on what it means to be Afro-Latina since the get-go.

CREDIT: @TakiemotoDoll / Twitter

In an interview with Zendaya in CR Fashion Book, Cardi opened up about her frustrations with public ignorance:

“We are Caribbean people […] Some people want to decide if you’re black or not, depending on your skin complexion, because they don’t understand Caribbean people or our culture. I feel like people need to understand or get a passport and travel. I don’t got to tell you that I’m black. I expect you to know it. When my father taught me about Caribbean countries, he told me that these Europeans took over our lands. That’s why we all speak different languages […] Just like everybody else, we came over here the same way. I hate when people try to take my roots from me. Because we know that there’s African roots inside of us…”

In just two years, Cardi went from a NYC stripper to $8 million net worth Grammy winner and mother.

CREDIT: @iamcardib / Instagram

We don’t care what you think about Cardi B, we are shipping her success, and all the music she’s giving the Latino community.

We’re over here waiting for Cardi to get her own reality TV show so she can dish it all.

CREDIT: @revolttv / Twitter

Also. We need more Cardi memes in our life. Give us those throwbacks, Cardi!

READ: People Want Houston To Honor Los Tigres Del Norte With Their Own Day After Beating Cardi B’s Record

Puerto Rico's Airbnbs And Experienced Will Take Your Vacation To The Next Level


Puerto Rico’s Airbnbs And Experienced Will Take Your Vacation To The Next Level

Mark / Airbnb

Aside from just straight donating to charities, visiting Puerto Rico is one of the best ways to help the island continue its recovery from the damages of Hurricane Maria. The island has a long history of relying on tourism to boost its economy, and it’s for good reason: es bellísima. 

Learn to rappel down a waterfall | $135

CREDIT: Diego / Airbnb

If you came to Puerto Rico for the waterfalls, then climbing several small waterfalls with Diego to reach the top of El Salta Waterfall is for you. He’ll teach you how to rappel down the 80 foot waterfall and then zipline out of the forest. Plus, reviewers say that Diego’s family accommodated their vegan dietary needs for a home-cooked meal afterward!

Tree House | $62 p/night

CREDIT: Enrique / Airbnb

I see you outdoorsy people. Enjoy a stay in a five star rated modest treehouse in Utuado, close to rivers, lakes beaches and caves. One reviewer raves, “A magic, romantic and private place for anyone who like wilderness and peace. Much better than i expected. Crazy for going back there. And centric for whoever visit and is planning to adventure the whole island.”

Culebra Snorkeling Getaway | $115

CREDIT: East Island / Airbnb

This sold out experience gets you six hours of Caribbean Sea views, both above board and under water. Enjoy Culebra’s beautiful beaches and coral reefs at your leisure, along with a lunch buffet and all snorkeling gear included.

Pool House with Underground Jacuzzi Grotto | $850 p/night

CREDIT: Max / Airbnb

If you’re swimming in dough or have a big group of friends, you’ll enjoy this 8-bedroom mansion complete with an underground jacuzzi. The home itself is a piece of history, complete with private pools and unique features.

Rainforest Water Slide Tour | $89

CREDIT: Chris / Airbnb

This is Airbnb’s #1 adventure tour in Puerto Rico for a reason. You’ll get to go to remote giant rainforest water slides and jump off of 30 foot cliffs into crystal clear water.

Body Rafting™ & Caving ∙Nature Reserve | $110

CREDIT: Mimi / Airbnb

Mimi is a scientist who has spent 7 years surveying the geo hydrology of Tanamá caves. She takes adventurers in life vests to float downstream and get a nature tour of the caves she studies so intimately.

Horseback Ride on Luquillo Beach | $99

CREDIT: Alejandro / Airbnb

You guys. Bring your boo to “traverse the crystal clear waters of the Mameyes River to finally reach Luquillo’s Gold Coast” on horseback. Then, relax on the beach, have a drink and enjoy the breeze.

Casablanca | $79

CREDIT: CasaBlanca / Airbnb

Rent out your own air conditioned space just blocks from Ocean Park beach in San Juan. When you’re not taking in San Juan, you can relax on your own hammock in a tropical private garden.

Condado City Lights – LED Night Paddle | $49

CREDIT: mark / Airbnb

If your idea of enjoying San Juan’s nightlife is from an LED lit paddle board, then Mark has you covered. The glow face paint is included. ; )

Sail San Juan Bay | $75

CREDIT: Ivan / Airbnb

Spend a couple hours with Ivan on a romantic sunset sail on San Juan Bay. His complimentary drinks really hit home with reviewers, along with his excellent photography skills. Get that couples’ shot with flying manta rays. This is your vacay.

Mofongos! Mofongos! Mofongos! | $29

CREDIT: cristian / Airbnb

You haven’t been to Puerto Rico until you’ve drooled while eating its famous mofongo. Join Cristian and his family in learning how to make the dish, offered to meet your dietary needs.

Entire Condominium in San Juan | $115 p/night

CREDIT: Annet and Andrés / Airbnb

A recent guest says it all about this gem: “A rare piece of history and beauty. An incredible opportunity to see, hear, and experience Old San Juan from the most premier location. The Victorian doors and windows were stunning. The open balconies on the interior was fascinating and incredible – facilitating a constant warm ocean breeze when the louvers and shutters were open. A roof porch in the center of town. Great views of the lively colors of the city. Thanks to Lourdes for her kindness, recommendations, and welcomeness. Kind neighbors downstairs. Muchas gracias!”

Go Paddleboarding in a scenic lagoon with Julio for $25

CREDIT: Juilo / Airbnb

Check out Puerto Rico’s manatees, sea turtles and sting rays in a beautiful lagoon adjacent to the city of San Juan. His staff are all certified by the American Canoe Association to give you the best experience possible of the Condado Lagoon.

Surfing with Local Brian Ramos! | $70

CREDIT: Brian / Airbnb

Brian promises to take you to uncrowded spots where beginners are able to get 10+ waves in a short two hour lesson. If you’ve never surfed before, trust that this is huge.

Experience Tropical Camping at a Cabin Close to the Ocean | $95 p/night

CREDIT: Francis / Airbnb

Call this glamping, complete with post-modern minimalist decor, AC and a nearby beach. Reviewers truly *rave* about their host: “We loved staying at Francis’ place. It was immaculate and furnished with great attention to detail. There was a nice bottle of red wine and chocolates. Francis was very hospitable and easy to talk to, and he gave us two fresh coconuts and straws to drink from. What makes this Airbnb special is the beach nearby and the local friendliness in the area. The beach is right across the street and through a little trail. It is very private besides a few surfers in the morning. The sand is soft and the waves are beautiful. We spent a lot of time collecting sea shells and swimming. We will definitely be back!”

Exotic Flower Farm Stay | $39 p/night

CREDIT: Britton / Airbnb

Yup. You can stay in a cabana on a tropical fruit and flower farm with ocean views. Grab a mango from the garden and head to the beach for some good surf, all at a very reasonable price.

Barefoot Studio Sanctuary Prime Location Surf Yoga | $50 p/night

CREDIT: Joy / Airbnb

The best part about this studio, complete with a king bed and private garden filled with tropical flowers for your picking, is how integrated other activities are with your stay. You can walk to the beach, take surf and yoga lessons offered by the same company.

Eco-Chalet up in the mountains | $100 p/night

CREDIT: Juan Carlos / Airbnb

Enjoy your stay at the only Puerto Rican eco-lodge listed on Airbnb. The house is on 144 acres of private tropical rainforest. The only electricity in the house comes from solar energy, and you can expect to be completely unplugged from the internet. This place has 100 five star reviews.

Cave Tubing and Ziplining Adventure | $75

CREDIT: Noel / Airbnb

It’s the lazy river for not so lazy people. This trip into the Arecibo area includes a 250 foot biplane, rafting into caves, and hikes through the famous El Yunque rainforest.

El Yunque Rainforest River Trail! | $89

CREDIT: Safuan / Airbnb

Safuan offers transportation to and from the famous El Yunque rainforest. From there, you’ll embark on a short hike to a less traversed swimming hole, complete with a swinging rope, a natural stone slide, and local beach.

READ: 22 Amazing Airbnb Listings For Your Next Trip to Latin America

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