Self-Expression, Beauty Rituals, and Uplifting The Trans Community With Mariana Marroquin

Learn about LA's Trans Wellness Center and how to become a better ally for the trans community.
annkrishaannkrisha
Jun. 24
campaign, cherie
Cherie is an online community of beauty lovers sharing their stories; whether that's their favorite products, makeup tutorials, or skincare routines. Download the app today to be a part of #BeautyWithoutBarriers and show the world what beauty means to you!It's Pride Month! Here at Cherie we're celebrating it by amplifying queer voices and stories. It's important that with every month of celebration we also include moments of education. While continuous support and education for all parts of the LGBTQ+ community is important in creating understanding, I wanted to bring light to the "t"— trans lives. Trans people have been underserved for far too long with people often not knowing that intersectional bodies are some of the most endangered. The lack of understanding and acceptance towards the trans community from the broader majority of people, primarily cis-gendered heterosexuals, have disproportionally harmed trans lives. I spoke with Mariana Marroquin, the Program Manager of LA LGBT's Trans Wellness Center, to talk about her life, trans allyship, the hardships they face, the wonderful work being done by community centers like TWC, and what beauty means to her. What is the importance of spaces like LA's Trans Wellness Center?The Trans Wellness Center is a space where people like me have worked for more than a decade, asking to have our own space and to be led by our community. That’s something that makes us very unique. For many years, when we would talk about HIV and STD prevention and care, we were a community that would be left behind. We were always being told about what we need to do, but we never had the opportunity to be the ones actually making the decisions. I think when we finally opened the Trans Wellness Center two years ago, it carried that legacy of my trans sisters who have worked to have our voices and our bodies and our lives uplifted in many different ways. Why do you think the T for trans lives is often left out in conversations when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community?I think people still don’t have the chance to actually listen to us. Someone asked me “How can I be a good ally to the trans community?” I’m like, “Just forget about every assumption you have about me and just hear me. Just listen to my needs, who I am, and what my message is in this world. And what I need to say.” And that happens a lot. People want to come alongside trans women and the trans community without giving us the space to explain our needs or our goals in our lives and as a community. And we have a new generation of gender non-binary and gender non-conforming people who I celebrate and who I’m learning from. I take a step back and I just want them to tell me about them. I’m an immigrant woman from Guatemala who came here to be a woman and know what it means to be a woman. It’s interesting how, in many years working with my community, I keep learning about what it means to be a woman and what it means to be a trans woman and what it means to be a trans leader as well. Because everything is changing and evolving and I’m so happy about that. I think talking about beauty isn’y about physical beauty; it’s about who you are and what your contribution is to society. That’s the most important thing people need to know about the T. That message, when we talk about other issues… I remember when we were talking about marriage equality. The trans community was supportive of marriage equality. The trans community has always been behind every movement, but when it’s time to talk specifically about the T, we don’t have that many spaces to do so.What are some issues that the trans community deals with?We don’t have the same opportunities for employment. Regardless of our qualifications, education, or skills, we just don't get the same opportunities. Employment and education are important things that we all need to have access to. A lot of our youth decided to not continue their education because there's a lot of bullying, staring, and misgendering of them at school. It’s a shame because I believe we are a community that humanity can learn about resilience from. It doesn’t matter what we go through, we keep going every day. It doesn’t matter if our family or any other people say “I don’t see you” or “You’re not who you say you are”—we keep going out into the world. Every day is a challenge of people questioning who we are. People will ask “but what is your REAL name?” These are things that any other human being wouldn’t get asked every day. People don’t get questioned about who they are and whether they belong in certain spaces. People are beginning to also see how many transgender women of color are being murdered every year due to hate and prejudice and no one is doing anything about it. So that is the reality out there. If you are a parent and you have a very young child who is beginning to express themselves as a transgender person, and you see that there is so much hate out there, you’re going to worry and you’re going to try and change that kid instead of supporting who they are. But there is a community out there and there are allies who are curious about who we are and who want to give us the platform to show the world who we are. Ann: It makes me think about how there’s this inherent misunderstanding of the trans community and I think a lot of the time, people, when they don’t understand something, don’t take the time to understand it. They just dehumanize it because it’a easier to stay on course with things you do know than to be uncomfortable and learn about things you don’t know.We are so open to speak and to talk about our lives. I always say to not focus on the trans part. Ask me who I am and where I came from. Ask me what my goals are and about my experiences. In that moment, all those ideas you have about the community go down and you can actually meet the real human being behind the T.How do you continue to uplift yourself and members of the trans community?Something that every human needs is a sense of belonging. In LGB communities, the T was always left behind. When we go out and we go to school and we go to work every day, people can tell that we’re very unique and that we’re very different—that’s something that I appreciate when it comes to having this platform where we can share who we are as human beings, and not just as a letter that we celebrate every year. For us, pride is every single day. When I wear makeup, it's a celebration that I have a job and that I have a place to go and I have a mission that I need to accomplish. That’s something I’ll never take for granted. We all have the power to be the person to make the difference for others. There’s always someone you can help, no matter how down you’re feeling. Sometimes we think about how we’re the ones who need help but that’s not always true. There’s always something you can do for others. I’m part of a team where, despite what we’ve been through, we’re able to put others first and we’re able to empathize. We all can find the place where we can be a part of a team where we can make others stronger.What are some of your greatest accomplishments in your life?Having a job where I can be who I am. If I were to lose my job tomorrow, I believe I would be in a place where I’m struggling to find a job and to find a new place in our society. I’ve been able to help create a place where I can allow people to be themselves and I’ve been able to provide a safe space for others. I’m happy that, while at some point in my life I needed a chance, now I’m the one who is able to give people chances. Being about to create those opportunities for others is so fulfilling. I feel like I’m wise and experienced now and like I have something to tell new generations. I never imagined that I would be alive to witness this and be a part of this. It’s amazing. I work in immigration too and there are around 100 individuals who came to this country in my same situation — with fear, without knowing the language, without knowing what their situation would look like. And I was the one connecting them with immigration attorneys and telling them “I know you’re scared right now, but things will be different in a year to two.” I always keep in contact with them and it’s so nice because I know that feeling and I get to work on behalf of these people. What are some of your favorite beauty rituals? What do you love about beauty?My grandmother and my mother are two women who I love and admire so much. They always talked about finding the best way to feel good and to look good. Growing up, I remember putting on my first peel-off mask and that was a moment where we connected so well. I was that little boy who was very close to her. Those little moments were so important because we shared something together. We’re still doing that now. In that time, it was not okay for other people to see. But it was okay for my mom. Because she knew that I was, no matter what, her child. She knew she needed to protect me. We’re still bonding through beauty: finding the best lipstick, finding the best masks, making homemade treatments for hair and everything. That’s something we enjoy a lot together. I think that’s something that we share intimately. I think that boys have that with their dads; I had that with my mom. She had the same thing with her mom. It’s fun and I enjoy everything that makes me closer to the way I feel inside. I didn’t have the chance to do that growing up, so I do that now. I own my own beauty and I own my own face and I own my own body and I can’t ever take that for granted. I have a message to send every day through beauty: I’m here and I’m not going anywhere. I really love that families are being more supportive of their children and their gender expression. Growing up in Guatemala and having my uncles talking about me and criticizing my mother for letting me be me was very hard to go through. Now I can see kids wearing feminine clothes and playing with barbies and being who they want to be and that is the most gratifying thing to witness. It’s interesting how you have the chance to educate your parents. My mother always knew I was different, but she didn’t know anything about being trans. Now I have the chance to talk about other trans people and I have the chance to tell her that re lipstick is not the best lipstick for everybody. We need to celebrate body shapes, color, and everyone in life. We’re getting into good conversations all the time and we’re learning together.Fill in the blank: I express ________ through beauty.I express my true self through beauty. There is a beautiful word in the trans community: transition. Transition isn’t only for trans people. Transition is for everyone. Every day you need to try to be your best self, the best person you can be. It’s a constant transition. It doesn’t start and it doesn’t end. You should be always trying. I believe that’s a beautiful journey that we need to enjoy and that applies to every human being. If yesterday you have one style and tomorrow you decide to go for something different, that’s okay. That’s great because you OWN that and it’s your right as a human being to send a message to others. That is important to remember. People focus on being complete and it’s not about that. It’s a beautiful journey of transition every single day. You can have hard days and you can be sad. But tomorrow you need to keep going. Growing up it was very sad and very depressing. Sometimes I remember that. But now I’m so vivid and so full of life that it was so worth it.
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🚨 Natasha Denona Glam DUPE! //$65 vs. $14
🚨 Natasha Denona Glam DUPE! //$65 vs. $14
Happy Saturday Cherie Sisters 👯‍♀️ 💕 I hope everyone is having a great weekend so far. I have been loving cool toned eyeshadows lately. I think they are the perfect tones to wear during fall and winter time so I purchased my first Natasha Denona product and got the glam palette. I fell in love with the color story and can see myself reaching for this palette often. So far the eyeshadows feel so luxurious. They are pigmented and I can do a look with just one dip. They blend themselves too so doing a look isn’t too time consuming. NATASHA DENONA - Glam Eyeshadow Palette When I saw that Colourpop announced their That’s Taupe collection, I knew I had to get the eye palette because it looked very similar to my glam palette. I wanted to do a comparison so you guys can decide if you need to spend $65 for the Natasha Denona one. So far these are up to par with Colourpop quality. The eyeshadows are pigmented and they included a couple super shock formula on the palette. These are great quality for the price. #Colourpop - That’s Taupe[products]#[FiveStars] So the Colourpop palette isn’t a complete dupe to the ND one, but there are some shades that are really similar to each other. Once blended on the eye, you can hardly tell the difference. The only difference between the two is the quality. The ND palette was pigmented after one dip and blended quickly. I had to dip 3-4x in the CP pan to match the pigmentation for the ND one. It also took time blending it out. Overall, the end results are the same, but it took half the time to work with the ND palette because it was much easier to work with. If cool-toned eyeshadows aren’t you your alley, but still want it on your collection, I say stick with CP. also if you don’t mind spending the extra time building up the color and blending then save the $51 difference. If you are someone who is looking for quality then definitely go for the glam palette. This will save you time and you won’t use as much product because it’s so pigmented. Do you prefer cool tones or warm tones? Xoxo, Francesca 💋
I turned myself into Neytiri from Avatar👽😊
I turned myself into Neytiri from Avatar👽😊
For this year's Halloween look, I opted for this one. For a detailed tutorial visit my Youtube channel Nita's Glam World. 😊❤️
My Favorite Falsies! 👑 ✨ 💖
My Favorite Falsies! 👑 ✨ 💖
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TURNING DRUGSTORE LASHES INTO WISPY FAUX MINKS✨
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👀 Great Results!! 👀 My New Serum - 💋
👀 Great Results!! 👀 My New Serum - 💋
- Origins Ginzing Into the Glow Brightening Serum - Okay, I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for great packaging. Seriously though. Something could be outrageously priced but have pretty packaging and I’ll end up buying it! (Yeah TonyMoly!) Lol Anywho, when I first came across this serum, my first thought was that it would make great Shelf Candy for Halloween time! Lol It’s bright orange so it’s perfect. 🎃 - Key Ingredients - Vitamin C Hyaluronic Acid AHA/BHA Blend Green Coffee Seed - Benefits (Pro’s) - Reduces Redness Reduces Inflammation Boosts Hydration Improves Sun/Dark Spots Boosts Cell Turnover Brightens and Plumps Skin - Con’s - Burns if used after exfoliating Tad bit expensive Burns if used after plucking hairs Leaves skin a little sticky and tacky I used this serum for a few weeks before even thinking about writing an article about it because I didn’t just want to give my first impressions. This serum was a bit difficult for me at first because the first time I used it I had just deeply exfoliated my skin and used 2 of my torture devices to clear my pores and to remove the small hairs from my face. When I say “Torture Devices”, my 7 year old Son named them that. Lol It’s my Blackhead Vacuum and my Spring Facial Hair Remover. Anywho, back on track. Since I used it right after these, it burned like no one’s business. 😱It felt like a darn Bee Stinging me over and over. 🐝🐝 Nevertheless, I didn’t get discouraged and tried again the next day which still burned but after my skin healed from everything, it never burned again.🥳 Long story short, my skin day by day has started looking brighter and lighter. It is much much smoother which makes wearing Foundation, well.... Smoother. My Dark Sun Spots look 👀 softer than before and the redness in my T-Zone has reduced noticeably. 👹ORIGINS - Ginzing Into the Glow Brightening Serum My skin is softer, looking and feeling more hydrated and moisturized. It has a great texture. It’s like a cream mixed with a serum. It isn’t runny or thin like a normal serum. It isn’t oily and doesn’t have a harsh scent. 🤔 - My Final Thoughts - 🤔 (Every time I say that, I think of Jerry Springer!)🪑 I know that if I would keep using this Serum it would give me much more dramatic results. This serum is an excellent product. It has so many great benefits. It’s 100% Vegan, meaning no animal products.(except for Beeswax and Honey) It gives amazing results in such a short amount of time. It’s definitely worth the price and the purchase. I give it 5 stars! ⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ I recommend it for any skin type or tone. BUT if you have Sensitive skin, I recommend Spot or Patch Testing first because it has ingredients in it that can be harsh on Sensitive Skin sometimes. ❓❓If you have any Questions, Comments, Complaints or Suggestions? Let me know in the comments below! (Hehehe that rhymes!) Lol ❓❓ ✌️♥️ UNTIL NEXT TIME LOVELIES................