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9 Disabled Latinas Killing It In Fashion And Beauty

Thanks to ableist movies like “Me Before You,” “Split” and “The Shape of Water,” when most people think of disabilities they often associate it with all things depressing, scary or pitiful. Mainstream media  consistently portrays disabilities in a way that have led many of us to believe that those in the community only come with one story and one shade: ones that are depressing and white. Fortunately, the stories of the disabled community are so much diverse, they’re beautiful, fierce, many are positive and all come in the many different skin tones that contribute to Fenty Beauty’s existence.

Here are nine Disabled Latinas who are challenging beauty standards and showing the world how beautiful and diverse Disabled Latina beauty is.

1. Tamara Mena

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Happy #cincodemayo!! 🇲🇽 I’m Proud to be #Mexican!! So with that said, today is NOT Mexico’s Independence Day!! Today, a really important battle was won that led us to our Independence Day on September 16th! So it’s not Mexico’s Independence Day, today! Just for all of you who may not know!😉 But somehow this is a day that someone in the US figured out, hey let’s make a lot of money celebrating mexico, selling lots of margaritas 🍻 and tacos🌮! 🤷🏻‍♀️😄 So cheers to that! Enjoy today ☄️and be safe!!! Don’t drink and drive!!🙏 It’s not worth it! 😉 What ya think about this look? All my clothes and accessories were hand made and embroidered by indigenous people in Mexico!♥️ • OMG I forgot to tell you all the most important thing about today, TODAY IS THE ANNIVERSARY OF MY SECOND CAR ACCIDENT, in which I was driving! It was so bad that we dropped 50 feet, my car rolled over three times, that car is totaled…but by god’s grace and my angels watching over me,we all survived, my mom, @marthaelviap and my cousin @dayrarominna!🙏♥️ So today I don’t just celebrate, cinco de mayo, I celebrate life!! Because I’m SO so lucky to be alive so cheers to LIFE!!! • __________________ Feliz Cinco de Mayo, a los que lo celebran! Yo sé que en #Mexico no se celebra tanto como en E.U. Pero bueno cómo orgullosa Mexicana, les comparto esta foto!🇲🇽♥️ A celebrar! Pero si tomas, no manejes por favor!🙏 No vale la Pena 😉 Bendiciones! Les gusta este look? con ropa típica y accesorios hechos a mano por nuestros paisanos de #oaxaca! ♥️ • Chicos me olvidé de compartirles lo más importante de este día, HOY ES EL ANIVERSARIO DE MI SEGUNDO ACCIDENTE DE CARRO, en el cual yo estaba manejando! Fue horrible, tanto que nos caímos a un barranco y mi carro se volcó tres veces, caímos 50 pies y ese carro fue perdida total…Pero por la gracia de Dios y nuestros ángeles que nos estaban cuidando, todas sobrevivimos mi mamá, @marthaelviap y mi prima, @dayrarominna!🙏♥️ Así es que hoy no sólo celebró el “5 de Mayo” CELEBRÓ La VIDA!! Porque soy MUY afortunada en estar VIVA después de ese accidente, así es que salud por la vida!!! 🙌

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Born and raised in Leon, Mexico, Mena immigrated to the United States at 13. The bilingual motivational speaker, actress, and model advocates for disability rights by frequently sharing her experiences on Instagram. When Tamara was 19, she suffered a car accident that left her paralyzed from the mid-chest down. The accident also caused the death of her boyfriend. In the years following the incident, Tamara has worked as a public speaker and encouraged others in the community on how to thrive in the face of a derailment. She participated in the famous beauty pageant Nuestra Belleza Latina as the first woman to be in a wheelchair in the competition and is one of the first Disabled talents to work with Ipsy. These days, she continues to use her voice and style to show young Disabled Latinas that they can achieve their dreams.

2. Jillian Mercado

This Disabled Afro-Latina has been killing it on the runway and in front of the camera since her modeling career took off when she landed an ad campaign with Diesel Jeans. Born with muscular dystrophy, a genetic disease that causes progressive weakness and loss of muscle mass, Jillian has used her voice to highlight how she and others have grown up with a severe lack of disabled representation in the fashion world. Since this New York Based Dominicana’s ad with Diesel Jeans, she has been signed with IMG models and has worked with Target and other large major brands. She’s definitely one to keep an eye on in the fashion world.

3. Marimar Quiroa

This Selona/Latina is killing the makeup game on Instagram and YouTube with her vibrant use of eyeshadows to create signature looks. Marimar is a 23-year-old Latina born with a facial tumor called “Cystic Hygroma.” She uses sign language to communicate with her followers on YouTube and Instagram and spreads a message to others to embrace their beauty. Growing up Marimar felt she needed to hide her face but after discovering makeup, she has embraced her features and found a passion in being a makeup artist.

4. Christina Feliz

Christina Feliz Martinez is a makeup artist and professional model based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Inspire by her Latinidad, chronic illness, and love for makeup, she uses her platform to share looks that she creates that celebrate it all. Because of her chronic illness, she has retired from modeling full time but does shoots occasionally. These days, she’s mostly focused on her work as a full-time makeup artist who highlights beauty products that can be a benefit to the chronic illness community.

5. Dru Presta

Standing at 3ft 4in, this Puerto Rican-Sicilian model born with a form of dwarfism is on a mission to change the fashion industry one photo at a time. Dru grew up in Reno, Nevada where she experiences bullying and isolation from her peers. Determined to not let the ugliness of others affect her, Presta uses her platform to show her audience that sexy can come in many sizes.

6. Annie Segarra

Annie Segarra, more commonly known online as Annie Elainey is a Disabled Peruvian-Ecuadorian Latinx with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) which is a connective tissue disorder. On YouTube, Annie creates videos that bring awareness to EDS but also speaks about the intersection of being disabled and Queer. Their platform has become a safe space for Disabled LGBTQ+ to feel seen and supported. When Annie isn’t creating videos, they’re slaying on Instagram with their #disabledandcute fashion looks. Their photos show outfits paired perfectly with their mobility aids.

7. Jessica Ruiz

Jessica Ruiz is a Puerto Rican-Irish makeup artist based in Philadelphia whose main tool in creating looks for her clients is her mouth!  Born with arthrogryposis, a condition that doesn’t allow her joints to move “normally”, she learned how to apply makeup with her mouth by holding the tools between her lips. She made makeup accessible for herself and after being rejected by a beauty school because of her disability she said “girl bye” and began a career for herself as a makeup artist. Her biggest break came when she had the opportunity to work at the Philadelphia Small Business Fashion Week where she was the lead makeup artist for the event. Jessica is making a name for herself as a disabled Latina MUA, and won’t be stopping any time soon!

8. Elsie Tellier

Living with Cystic Fibrosis (a terminal illness that affects the respiratory and gastrointestinal system), this Mexican-French Canadian uses her wheelchair to show off her love for fashion and her personality. After finding clothes that were comfortable and made her feel good while being in her chair, she began painting her wheels with pictures of galaxies and flowers to match her aesthetics. She uses her mobility aid as a fashion statement that challenges society’s absurd beauty standards. Tellier has said that her big goal is to see fashion brands make fashion accessible for those who use aids like wheelchairs, crutches, canes etc.

9. Giovanna “Gigi” Giscome

giovanawashere_/Instagram

This Afro-Latina from New York City and based in San Francisco Bay Area combines her love for fashion and modeling with her disability rights activism. Gigi has said that as she was growing up her parents taught her to love her disability but she soon noticed that that outside of her family atmosphere often revealed how uncomfortable they were with her disability. While she personally felt fine about being disabled she knew she wanted to change the mindset of others and did so with the help of fashion. Modeling and becoming a fashionista is Gigi’s way of fighting beauty standards which typically only showcase white, able models. Her fashion choices make a statement that both she and her disability are beautiful. Her photos show that she can bring it when it comes to high fashion with jaw-dropping looks.

Here’s What The Toro Cheerleaders Would Look Like If They Were Latinas

Entertainment

Here’s What The Toro Cheerleaders Would Look Like If They Were Latinas

credit: Universal Pictures / Phillip Faraone | @versace_official

Few films have gotten the honor of reaching cult teen movie status like the 2000 classic “Bring It On.” The film, a mega-hit about two dueling cheerleader teams, has stood the test of time. Though it’s a movie about cheerleading on its surface, the themes of cultural appropriation and female empowerment are still relevant today. Nearly 20 years later, the antics of the Toros and the Clovers continue to be an entertaining watch. Still, we can’t help thinking how much better “Bring It On” would be if it was given a touch of the Latinidad with a fresh recast.

1. Selena Gomez as Torrence

Universal Pictures / Phillip Faraone

Perky Torrence is the brand new cheer squad captain of the Rancho Carne Toros. The excitement of her new position quickly dulls when she realizes that she’s got some big shoes to fill. Originally played by Kirsten Dunst, Selena Gomez is perfect actress to fill this role. We know Gomez already has some killer moves already and that bubbly attitude of hers just screams “head cheerleader.”

2. Becky G as Missy

Universal Pictures / Emilio Sanchez

Full of fierce attitude, Missy is the new girl in school. Since Rancho Carne doesn’t have a gymnastics team, Missy has to settle for the next best thing — even if that means putting up with the air headed cheer team. Played by Eliza Dushku in the OG “Bring It On,” pop star Becky G is just the mujer to bring the Chigona POV to the Toros.

3. Tyler Posey as Cliff

Universal Pictures / Shutterstock

Dreamboat Cliff is also new to Ranco Carne and he already has his sights on Torrence. Jesse Bradford played Cliff in the original movie but for our Latinx version, Tyler Posey is our guy. Charming high school senior by day, alternative rocker at night; we can totally see Posey crooning a love song to Gomez’s Torrence.

4. Cardi B as Isis

Universal Pictures / Shutterstock

Head-Boss-Lady-In-Charge, Isis is the cheer captain of the East Compton Clovers. When she discovers the Toros have been stealing their moves, she rallies her Clovers to win Nationals. Played by Gabriel Union in the original movie, Cardi B is the only Afro-Latina who can bring the same level of fierceness to the role. We already know Cardi has the moves and there’s no question she can rep the Clovers as their leader.

5. Bella Thorne as Big Red

Universal Pictures / Shutterstock

The former boss of the Toros, Big Red — played by Lindsay Sloane — is a force of nature. Not above flat out cheating to get what she wants, Big Red is the one who stole the Clovers’ routine for nationals. With this baggage, it’s going to take a formidable Latina to fill this role. That’s why Bella Thorne, with her fiery red hair and stellar acting chops, would be a perfect fit for our Latina Big Red.

6. Francia Raísa as Courtney

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Universal Pictures / Jason Merritt

A member of the Rancho Carne Toros, Courtney is all confidence and sex appeal. She also has very strong opinions about who should and shouldn’t be a cheerleader and isn’t afraid to let it be known. Originally played by Clare Kramer, Francia Raísa is the perfect candidate for this role as she already has experience with the “Bring It On” franchise. The “Grown-ish” star played a cheerleader in “Bring It On: All Or Nothing.”

7. Auli’i Cravalho as Whitney

Universal Pictures / Brian Bowen Smith

Dedicated cheerleader perfectionist Whitney is Courtney’s partner in crime. Just like Courtney, Whitney is very committed to the legacy of the Toros. Unfortunately, this dedication pushes the team into some questionable decisions. Originally played by Nicole Bilderback, Puerto Rican-Hawaiian actress Auli’i Cravalho would bring a fresh dynamic to this role.

8. Diego Boneta as Aaron

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Universal Pictures / eonline.com

In the original “Bring It On,” Richard Hillman plays Torrence’s boyfriend and former Torro, Aaron. At first, he seems like a handsome and wholesome all-American guy but, in actuality, he’s a no-good cheater. Actor Diego Boneta has all of Aaron’s charm and is handsome enough to play this role in the Latinx reboot. He also has the acting talent to portray the POV of a dirty cheater.

9. Kehlani as Jenelope

Universal Pictures / Galore Magazine

A member of the Clovers, Jenelope is a girl who is not here for anyone else’s attitude. Originally played by R&B artist Natina Reed, this role definitely needs another boss artist for the Latinx reboot. Afro-Latina and American singer/songwriter Kehlani can bring the pose and the moves to this Clover.

10. Herizen Gaurdiola as Lava

Universal Pictures / Jemal Countess

Isis’ other Clover comadre, Lava is just as heated about the Toros stealing their moves as her name suggests. Shamari Fears originally played Lava but, for the reboot, we need an awesome Afro-Latina actress. Herizen Guardiola of Netflix’s “The Get Down” is just who we need to bring fresh flavor to this supporting role.

11. John Leguizamo as Sparky Polastri

Universal Pictures / Miko Lim

Eccentric, mean and intimidating, Sparky Polastri is a so-called professional dance coach. The Toros call him in when things start looking desperate but his methods are totally bizarre. To make matters worse, the routine he sells them has also been sold to rival cheer teams. The wacky performance was originally done by Ian Roberts but we can totally see John Leguizamo in this memorable role.

Watch This Pastry Chef As She Almost Goes Crazy Trying to Make Takis At Home

Culture

Watch This Pastry Chef As She Almost Goes Crazy Trying to Make Takis At Home

The Bon Appetit Youtube series “Gourmet Makes” has gained quite the cult-following for its entertaining videos that follow a pastry chef, Claire Saffitz, as she tries to recreate popular junk and snack foods with higher quality ingredients. While usually Saffitz focuses on popular American foods like Oreos and Pringles, this time around, the Bon Appetit team decided to take their series in a more international direction. The latest snack food of choice? Takis!

Takis may not be for everyone, but for those who have grown up with them, they’re a delicious reminder of barbecues, family get-togethers and the joys of mindless snacking. Although the easiest way to experience a Taki is by buying a bag yourself, the snack food is best described as a small, taquito-shaped crunchy snack that packs a flavor that is reminiscent of both Hot Cheetos and Doritos.Made by Mexican snacking giant Barcel, the chip product is a staple among Mexican and Latinx families the world over. 

So for “Gourmet Makes” fans of Latinx descent, Saffitz’s decision to try her hand at re-making Takis was an exciting event.

Gourmet makes videos are usually composed of four parts. The initial description of the food, the reading of the ingredients, the exhaustive trial-and-error experimentation in the kitchen, and the final, communal taste test that is conducted by Saffitz and her fellow Bon Appetit chefs. And while the above steps may seem simple enough, the final gourmet snack product is usually days-in-the-making, with Saffitz anguishing over every ingredient and every step in its assembly.

Usually, a ton of preparation goes into the recipe-testing for gourmet makes, and this time was no different. Not only does Saffitz measure and weigh each individual Taki to make sure her creation is as similar as possible, but she also dunks a Taki in water in order to “hydrate and soften” the chip to “get a general sense of the shape”.

Although Takis are a popular Latino snack, most of the staff in the Bon Appetit test kitchen have never heard of the cult-favorite food.

After a chorus of “I’ve never actually had Takis” and “What the f*** is this?” from the staff at the BA test kitchen, Saffitz spends the better part of ten minutes researching and learning about the snack food. At one point, she even watches the viral video “Hot Cheetos & Takis” by the Y.N Rich Kids.

This time, Saffitz started her journey by reading out an exhaustive list of Takis ingredients (a reading that will possibly make you swear-off the ultra-processed food forever). After that, Saffitz gets to work assembling the Mexican chip. 

Screenshot via Youtube/ Bon Appetit

First,  Saffitz begins by mixing the spices that make up Takis’ signature spicy-sour-bold flavor. Then, she creates the dough with corn flour and vegetable oil, flattening the dough in a sizzle platter. Then, she rolls the dough onto tiny skewers and bakes them at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes. After they bake, she deep fries them in vegetable oil until they are crisp. For the final step, she tosses the tiny taquitos in her homemade blend of spices. 

And voila! The homemade Taki is born.

Screenshot via Youtube/ Bon Appetit

After three days of intense work, Claire Safftiz has made her very own version of Gringo Takis (which she at one point describes as looking like a “mini canoli”…sigh), and she’s ready to share her creation with the entire Bon Appetit team. We know that the experiment was successful by the first taste-tester who says “It’s just like, almost too much and then you’re like, okay one more!”. And that’s how you know you’re eating a real Taki. Nice work, Claire!

If you ever needed more evidence that Takis are the perfect snack food, you only need to head over to Twitter to find people waxing poetic about these tasty chips.

It’s crazy to think that no one in the Bon Appetit test kitchen has ever tasted a Taki before. We’re glad they’ve finally seen the light.

This person poses an extremely important question about how to responsibly incorporate as many Takis as possible into a balanced diet:

We’re still waiting on an answer to this one.

This person made an on-point observation about the joy Takis bring to life:

If happiness is currently off the table, then Takis are a close second.

This person made a very creative enchiladas dish where the main ingredient was Takis:

Get this person their own Food Network show, stat!

This teacher just became 100% cooler in the eyes of his students:

His “Teacher of the Year” award is in the mail as we speak.