4 Makeup Looks Inspired by Latina Icons

From Selena to Rita Moreno, we have eye-catching beauty looks from the Latinx community's biggest stars.

red lips curls model glam makeup beauty
'Tis the season to go glam. . Photo: Mikael Schulz/Trunk Archive

From Selena's red lips to María Félix's glorious curls, the signature looks of our favorite classic stars will inspire you to play up the features that make you stand out in any crowd. Holiday parties, we are coming in hot.

rita moreno brows actress singer dancer EGOT
Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Full Brows

The Icon: Rita Moreno

Puerto Rican actress, singer, dancer, and EGOT winner (catch her this winter in a remake of the movie that made her famous, West Side Story)

The Look

01 of 10

Maybelline New York Brow Fast Sculpt Gel Mascara

brow fast sculpt brow gel Maybelline
Courtesy of Maybelline

If your mom warned you about going overboard with the tweezers in your teen years (and you listened), you both deserve to take a bow. Full brows are in and for good reason: "Defined brows have the power to lift and even brighten your eyes," says Priscilla Freire, a Dominican makeup artist in New York City.

To get a better sense of your brows' natural shape and fullness, Freire suggests using a clear brow gel, like Maybelline New York Brow Fast Sculpt Gel Mascara, to brush the hairs up and out; then assess. Working with your natural brow shape, tweeze random hairs that fall outside of your brow line. Then fill in any sparse areas with a brow pencil in the shade closest to your natural color.

02 of 10

Makeup by Mario Master Blade Brow Pencil

makeup mario master brow blade pencil
Courtesy of Makeup by Mario

Try Makeup by Mario Master Blade Brow Pencil. The slanted tip helps you draw hairlike strokes, Freire says.

03 of 10

Benefit Cosmetics Gimme Brow+

gimme brow benefit cosmetics
Courtesy of Benefit Cosmetics

If you weren't blessed with Moreno's naturally full brows, no problem. Swap that clear brow gel for Benefit Cosmetics Gimme Brow+, which contains tiny microfibers that create natural-looking volume in seconds. Or a brow pro can tint your brows, which makes them look fuller for up to six weeks. Tame and smooth with a long-hold brow gel.

celia cruz lashes singer salsa queen
Courtesy of Everett Collection

Eye-Catching Lashes

The Icon: Celia Cruz

The Cuban singer who earned the title "Queen of Salsa" during her extraordinary 50-plus-year career

The Look

04 of 10

E.L.F. Cosmetics Big Mood Mascara

big mood mascara E.L.F. Cosmetics
Courtesy of E.L.F. Cosmetics

With lashes like these, your glam look is on lock. First, apply lots of mascara to top and bottom lashes. Look for a smudge-proof and volumizing formula, such as E.L.F. Cosmetics Big Mood Mascara. You can also wiggle a black pencil eyeliner at the roots of lashes for more definition. Tons of bristles help reach every teeny lash.

05 of 10

Velour Magnetic Effortless Kit

velour magnetic effortless kit
Courtesy of Velour Beauty

Then add falsies. They're the secret to this dramatic lash effect, and fortunately, the latest options are quicker and easier to apply than in the past. Velour Magnetic Effortless Kit comes with lashes and a black, magnetized adhesive that acts as both eyeliner and lash glue. Apply it along your lash line, wait for it to dry, then press the magnetic lash strip onto it. The tacky feeling will be gone and lashes will stay put all night long.

Salena statement lips singer model actress
Cesare Bonazza/Getty Images

Statement Lips

The Icon: Selena

Mexican American singer, model, actress, and all-around entertainer who made a lasting impact on music and fashion in her short life

The Look

06 of 10

Buxom Power Line Plumping Lip Liners.

buxom lips lip plumping liner
Courtesy of Buxom Cosmetics

A red lip is so classic—it never goes out of style, says Genevieve Herr, a Cuban celebrity makeup artist who counts Anya Taylor-Joy and Eva Mendes as clients. However, there's room to play with the color and make it your own. For a subtler take on the star's iconic hue, line your lips with a nude liner that matches your skin tone. Try the range of Buxom Power Line Plumping Lip Liners.

07 of 10

Honest Beauty Gloss-C Lip Gloss

honest beauty lip gloss red
Courtesy of Honest Beauty

Then top with Honest Beauty Gloss-C Lip Gloss in Poppy Topaz. This technique is perfect for moms. "I want to make my lips stand out without having to commit to the reapplication of a pigmented lipstick," Freire says.

08 of 10

Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge Drama Ink Liquid Lipstick

lancome L'Absolu rouge drama ink liquid lipstick
Courtesy of Lancome

For a more vibrant, longer-lasting option, Herr's a fan of Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge Drama Ink Liquid Lipstick, which has a curved applicator that allows for easy and precise application. The formula dries semimatte and feels weightless. Afterward, for a picture-perfect finish, both makeup artists like to clean up and define the border of the lip line with a bit of concealer on a lip brush. This pigment lasts though chats and cheers.

maria felix film actress curls
Courtesy of Mondadori Publishers/Wikicommons

Retro Waves

The Icon: María Félix

The Mexican singer and actress known for her stunning beauty and vivacious personality (a movie about her life is coming this year)

The Look

09 of 10

Innersense Organic Beauty I Create Lift Volumizing Foam

innersense volumizing foam curls hair
Courtesy of Innersense Organic Beauty

Back in the day, to achieve this Old Hollywood screen-siren hairstyle, women would park themselves under a big hooded drying chair at the salon to slowly and gently dry their hair in curlers. Today, it's all about embracing your unique hair texture. So when hair is damp, apply a leave-in conditioner and curl cream and let it air-dry (no salon trip needed). "This is a great way to discover your natural wave or curl," says Eladia Lebron, a Dominican master stylist at Ineffable New York, a salon in New York City that specializes in curly hair. "Then you can wrap waves or coils around a curling wand to stretch and define them."

Or if your hair is straight, you can follow Lebron's modern take on María's retro waves. Part your hair, gather a half-inch section on one side of your part, tease the roots with a tail comb, then apply two pumps of volumizing foam, like Innersense Organic Beauty I Create Lift Volumizing Foam to dampen it.

10 of 10

Drybar High Tops Self-Grip Roller

yellow retro roller curls drybar high tops
Courtesy of Drybar

Wrap the section around a Drybar High Tops Self-Grip Roller. "The damper your hair, the better it will stick to the roller," Lebron explains. "Also, don't roll it all the way to the base of your scalp; otherwise you'll lose the volume at your roots." Repeat this process until all of your hair is in rollers, then dry with a diffuser. Take the rollers out and use a paddle brush to comb the hair back. Last, spritz on a flexible hairspray for extra hold. Rollers pump up the drama.

This article originally appeared in Parents Latina magazine's December/January 2022 issue as "Iconic Beauty."

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