R29 Somos

Where la comunidad Latinx is seen, heard, and accurately represented. ✨
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a woman with long dark hair and large hoop earrings smiling at the camera, in front of a window
After Grief, I Quit Traveling. But This Trip to Mexico Reminded Me That I’m Never Alone
I used to love traveling. With my best friends by my side, I was nearly swept away by the Reynisfjara waves in Iceland, spun like a princess outside of the Royal Palace of Madrid, rock-climbed Las Tetas de Cayey in Puerto Rico, and danced nights away on Havana streets. But after the death of my best friend, I haven’t gone on new expeditions. The magic of globetrotting and sightseeing, in many ways, felt like it died with her. If I couldn’t travel somewhere new with her, then I wouldn’t at...
three women with different sports uniforms holding basketballs
Where Are The Latinas in Sports? Allow Drafted to Show You
Growing up as a queer Latina in Southern California, Karina Martinez found comfort in playing sports in high school. Martinez, who came out as queer at 16, felt alone in a school of 700 other kids who were either straight or closeted. But when she played sports, those feelings of standing out went away. “When I played sports for that hour or two a day, I felt like everybody else,” she tells Refinery29 Somos. The power of sports also aided Jennifer Yepez-Blundel’s personal development. ...
a group of people sitting next to each other in front of a stone wall with a fire place
Yes, My Mom Took Her Own Life. No, She Wasn’t Being Selfish
I sat on top of a table overlooking my high school track field, which at one point was my happy place, but things were different now. Twenty-five minutes into first period, I walked out of class, holding back tears. The old wooden table was the first place I wanted to go. My best friend, Nadine, and the boy who would later become my first love found me and took their seats next to me. We cried until the table broke, and we crashed to the ground. I erupted in laughter, which has become my favo...
a man sitting on the ground with his hands clasped in front of his face and wearing sunglasses
How Ryan Castro’s Barrio Pride (& Nickname) Inspired His First Album
It’s late April and one of the first 80-degree days in New York City, the ideal weather to be meeting someone born and raised in “La Ciudad de la Eterna Primavera.” Medellín, Colombia’s beloved Ryan Castro joins me in a dim clubroom in Manhattan, 10 days before the release of his first album, El Cantante Del Ghetto. “Yo digo que yo lo escogí pero la gente lo adoptó, es como una representación al barrio,” Castro shares with Refinery29 Somos about the title of his debut project. Released...
two pictures of people kissing each other and one is holding a woman's head
What Max’s Turtles All the Way Down Gets Right (& Wrong) About Latina Teens With OCD
Aza Holmes (Isabela Merced) can’t stand her own thoughts about bacteria and germs anymore. Despite doing therapy for her diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), the 16-year-old high schooler in Max’s new movie Turtles All The Way Down can’t help but go down endless thought-spirals about improbable infections and diseases that feel unbearingly real. Touching anything that might inadvertently infect her sets off thoughts of danger and a desperation to purge any infectious elements fro...
a man in a brown suit is holding his jacket over his head while standing against a dark background
Jay Wheeler Doesn’t Want You to Feel Alone. So He Made Música Buena, Para Días Malos
A futuristic mélange of sonic vignettes about love, loss, and heartbreak permeates Jay Wheeler’s latest offering, Música Buena, Para Días Malos. Throughout the project’s 13 tracks, the 30-year-old Puerto Rican superstar interpolates ethereal, ultra-modern beats as lyrical tales of longing come to the surface. Take, for instance, “En Tu Mente,” which details his inevitable pull on a lover — despite, perhaps, not treating her well. Yet the truth is, both protagonists are at fault as they cl...
For much of my life, I have found myself sitting in a salon chair every two weeks, getting my nails clipped, my cuticles nipped, my acrylics filled, and my hands painted into an elaborate work of art.  This self-adornment practice started back when I was 12 years old. Growing up in East Orlando in the early 2000s, my mom would drive us to a house painted in an Easter egg peach where a señora with a makeshift studio in her living room would do our manicures. With Wisin & Yandel play... Latina, Beauty And The Best, Black And Brown, Beauty Trends, Ridicule, High Art, Chrome Nails, Spring Nail Trends, Growing Up
From Chongas to Cholas, Acrylic Nails Have Long Been Central to Latina Girlhood
For much of my life, I have found myself sitting in a salon chair every two weeks, getting my nails clipped, my cuticles nipped, my acrylics filled, and my hands painted into an elaborate work of art. This self-adornment practice started back when I was 12 years old. Growing up in East Orlando in the early 2000s, my mom would drive us to a house painted in an Easter egg peach where a señora with a makeshift studio in her living room would do our manicures. With Wisin & Yandel play...
While images of la Virgen de Guadalupe, el Sagrado Corazón, and the festive, rainbow-bright colors so often associated with Latin America have indeed graced the beauty world’s tiniest canvases, fingernails, today’s Latina influencers are taking more modern, albeit just as exuberant, approaches to nail art. In Miami, Colombian-Ecuadorian nail artist Kro Vargas (@krocaine) emblazons the (long, long) nails of clients like Rosalia with hand-painted gel art. Airbrushed ribbons and sparkles lace...
Latine Culture’s Most Overlooked Art Form Is At Our Fingertips
While images of la Virgen de Guadalupe, el Sagrado Corazón, and the festive, rainbow-bright colors so often associated with Latin America have indeed graced the beauty world’s tiniest canvases, fingernails, today’s Latina influencers are taking more modern, albeit just as exuberant, approaches to nail art. In Miami, Colombian-Ecuadorian nail artist Kro Vargas (@krocaine) emblazons the (long, long) nails of clients like Rosalia with hand-painted gel art. Airbrushed ribbons and sparkles lace...
I was 11 when my 20-year-old sister drove me to my first nail appointment. Until then, I had observed for years my mother and my two older sisters visit the nail salon about five miles away from our home in Pico Rivera, a predominately Latine suburb of Los Angeles. I’d watch my sisters set aside $25 for an acrylic set, plan the day they’d go to the salon—typically a Saturday—and return home with trendy styles. Think: “Selena Red” with squared-off tips or classic pink and white French tips... Pedicure, Manicure And Pedicure, Acrylic Set, Perfect Nails, White French Tip, High Fashion Looks, Style Steal
As A Latina, Nail Care Is More Than Self-Care
I was 11 when my 20-year-old sister drove me to my first nail appointment. Until then, I had observed for years my mother and my two older sisters visit the nail salon about five miles away from our home in Pico Rivera, a predominately Latine suburb of Los Angeles. I’d watch my sisters set aside $25 for an acrylic set, plan the day they’d go to the salon—typically a Saturday—and return home with trendy styles. Think: “Selena Red” with squared-off tips or classic pink and white French tips...
a woman is brushing her hair in front of a mirror with the reflection of an image on it
Why Are So Many Puerto Rico Public Schools In Disrepair?
On the week of February 5, several stalls in the bathrooms at public high school Luis Felipe Crespo in Camuy, Puerto Rico, had padlocks on them for no apparent reason. Fed up with the many other maintenance issues at their school, three students, including 17-year-old Alaisha Torres Soto, decided to make a video showing the bathrooms’ conditions. The text overlaid on the video, which they posted on their graduating class’ TikTok account, read: “Uniforme completo jóvenes” (Students, wear y...
a woman with braids standing in front of an orange background wearing a t - shirt
Colombian Singer Elsa y Elmar’s “Spiritual Pop” Welcomes Our Multitudes
Before you meet Elsa y Elmar, it’s understandable if you assume you’ll encounter a musical duo or perhaps a gender-switching artist. But Elsa y Elmar is one person, the Colombian singer-songwriter Elsa Carvajal. She adopted the double stage name to honor the entirety of the team behind her artistic output. “It’s just so overwhelming to me, the sensation that this is bigger than just me, and I really wanted to bring that to life in terms of leading a musical project,” Elsa y Elmar says. “I...
four different pictures of people with backpacks and hiking gear, one is sitting on a rock while the other is standing
I’m In My Gorpcore Era. Here’s How I Achieve The Look & Lifestyle
I vividly remember my first trip to a national park. I was 23 visiting the Grand Canyon and Zion National Park for the first time. For the occasion, I bought clothes that I felt looked the part: A fleece vest, a pair of Adidas Terrex hiking boots (my first pair of hiking boots!), and flannels. While comfortable, my wardrobe didn’t reflect me. It was more of an unimaginative take. Think, outdoors cosplay. On that same trip, I had an epiphany. As I hiked a popular trail in Zion, I was met with ...
On a routine grocery shopping trip, 12-year-old Ludmilla decided to become a singer. While accompanying her mom, a DVD of a Beyoncé performance that played in the store enchanted a young Ludmilla. She bought a copy of the DVD, watched it at home, and thought: “How can someone do all that at the same time? I want to do that!”  Born and raised in the municipality of Duque de Caxias in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Ludmilla started her career by singing rhymes and sporadic lyrics over Braz...
With Ludmilla’s Historic Coachella Performance, “The Black Girl From Rio Won”
On a routine grocery shopping trip, 12-year-old Ludmilla decided to become a singer. While accompanying her mom, a DVD of a Beyoncé performance that played in the store enchanted a young Ludmilla. She bought a copy of the DVD, watched it at home, and thought: “How can someone do all that at the same time? I want to do that!” Born and raised in the municipality of Duque de Caxias in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Ludmilla started her career by singing rhymes and sporadic lyrics over Braz...
a woman walking down the street with a dog in her hand and another man behind her
Melissa Barrera Is Stepping Into Her Scream Queen Power With Abigail
Abigail is “a perfect gateway movie into the horror genre,” according to its star Melissa Barrera. And she should know — she’s become the reigning queen of the genre, headlining a range of titles from the corporate blockbusters Scream V and Scream IV to her independently produced Bed Rest to this year’s Sundance charmer Your Monster. In Abigail, she’s part of a group of criminals who kidnap a 12-year-old ballerina, taking her to an isolated mansion-slash-safe house to wait for ransom. ...
a woman with headphones is smiling at the camera while she holds a microphone in front of her
Latinas Are Tired. These ASMR Creators Are Helping Us Relax
In her most popular TikTok video, Desiree Diaz carefully places ingredients in a tiny pan perched on a just as teeny hot plate. She starts with oil, then sofrito, which satisfyingly sizzles in the pan, before she adds peppers, onions, and garlic. She cooks them until it’s time to add the beans, tomato sauce, and tomato paste. The water, added at the end, makes everything come together. This is the second part of Desirée’s Tiny Kitchen’s recipe for white rice, beans, and chicken — in part ...