Updated: Nov 16
By: Jacquelyn Gonzales
From folklorico skirts and trajes charros to hoop earrings and gold chain necklaces, Latinx fashion has always been about making a statement and sharing your cultura.
Though Hispanic Heritage Month has come to an end, I wanted to share seven Latinx fashion icons who have inspired my personal fashion.
1). Jenni Rivera
I’ve been admiring this “Reina de Reinas” ever since I was a little girl. Rivera was a Banda, Mariachi and Noterno American singer who was named Billboard’s “Top Latin artist of 2013” a year after her death.
As a curvy woman, Rivera’s go-to performance outfit was a form-fitted dress with a colorful shaw that effortlessly draped around her arms. The bottom of these dresses were always embroidered with beautiful flowers and other patterns making them straight out of a Quinceañera’s dream. Rivera is one of the reasons I feel more comfortable wearing body-con dresses because “sí ella pudo, yo también puedo.”
2). Bad Bunny
Hispanic culture has revolved around masculine and feminine specific fashion for years, but this conejo malo has been breaking the gender norms. Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio is a Puerto Rican trap artist, and he can be seen rocking an amazing set of nails on the red carpet or his Instagram.
He does not shy away from crazy, colorful patterns and he actually likes mixing them together. The 25-year-old artist is the reason I convinced myself it was cool to own tiny sunglasses. So if you see me strutting around campus with my “Baby Bunny lentes” know I think I look super dope.
3). Celia Cruz
The Queen of Salsa’s fashion alone showcases “La Vida es un Carnaval.” Cruz’s festive spirits and looks set her apart from most. The afro-Latina’s wardrobe was filled with sequins, feathers, and even more that showcased her Cuban heritage.
I remember always seeing her wild wigs and thinking “I’m going to dye my hair that color one day,” and guess what? I did!
A lot of people compare Cardi B, another afro-latina queen, to Cruz; especially Cardi’s look in J Balvin’s “I Like It” video.
Seeing as my wardrobe is 75% black clothing, Cruz reminds me to venture out into colorful, and floral patterns once in a while.
4). Juan Gabriel
Juan Gabriel is like our Elton John but better. “El Divo de Juárez” was known for his flamboyant style and was the first to break many fashion barriers in regard to gender.
Most singers from his time were often seen wearing the same blue or black suit when performing on stage. But Gabriel’s fashion had to match his extravagant persona. He was no stranger to glitter, jewels, fringe, and satin. The foundation of his suits were similar to traditional charro trajes, he just spiced them up a bit. He walked so that artists like Bad Bunny and even Harry Styles could run.
Selena Quintanilla is known as the “queen of Tejano music” and her contributions to music and fashion made her one of the most celebrated Mexican-Americans, even 24 years after her death.
When discussing Quintailla’s impact the question is not “who has she inspired,” but “who hasn’t she inspired?”
From J Lo to Becky G and even all of my tias and primas around Halloween, Selena is the definition of a style icon. She designed every one of her stage outfits. Her use of fringe, rhinestone belts and embellishments were her way of staying true to her Tejano roots.
When my family starts bugging me about my shirt being too short, I simply remind them Selena did it first.
6). Alejandra Guzmán
Alejandra Guzman is a Mexican pop-rock singer. She’s one of my mom’s favorites and as a result, I grew up watching her music videos.
She has a punk-rock vibe to her style and for that reason, she and Trevi are the two Latinas I look up to the most when it comes to fashion.
Even at the age of 51, Guzman has stayed true to her look. She has been rocking faux-hawks, leather, and combat boots for years. This is why I have stayed true to my edgy style, despite my mom’s numerous attempts to have me wear in pink.
7). Gloria Trevi
Similarly to Guzman, Gloria Trevi is an OG rockera whom my mom and I also love. She started out in the 80’s as a young teenager. Trevi is known for anti-authority attitude which inspired her edgy style.
Her feminist ways, messy hair, and punk rock looks have been a huge influence on my personal look and lifestyle. She’s the reason I still wear chain necklaces, bulky boots, and yes, the reason I still don’t brush my hair.