Calladitas No More

How mitú’s Founder Is Clapping Back To The Infamous ‘Calladita Te Ves Más Bonita’ Saying And Applying It To Her Career

If you were a young girl who grew up in a Latino household, you most likely heard your mom or abuelita constantly remind you that “Calladita te ves más bonita,” which translates to “you’re prettier when you’re quieter.” This was certainly not an expression that your brothers or boy cousins heard when they were growing, so from birth, we Latinas were already being conditioned to think and behave a certain way.

Today (Nov. 2nd) is “Equal Pay Day for Latinas”, which according to the National Women’s Law Center and Labor Council For Latin American Advancement means that Latinas need to work an extra 11 months a year in order to catch up and make the same money as white men. Or seven months more then white women, and four additional months than African-American women. Latinas are the most underpaid women of any demographic in the U.S., and this is not because we have jobs that pay less, even in high leadership positions, Latinas get paid approximately half the amount white men get paid who hold the same positions and degrees. Whether you are a doctor or a housekeeper, if you are a Latina in this country you can expect to make on average $1.5 million less than any white man over the course of your professional career.

WTF, right?

So what’s the deal? … Does our country really discriminate more against Latinas than anyone else? Or, should our moms and abuelas share some of the blame for handicapping our self-confidence by instilling old fashioned ideals as part of our cultural upbringing? Could it be that they programmed us as soon as we could talk, that speaking up for what we deserve is not necessarily attractive or considered ‘good manners’?

I was born with a very “passionate” and outspoken personality — one that constantly got me in trouble at school. So, I can remember clearly hearing “calladita te ves más bonita,” both from my sweet Mexican abuelita and my highly-educated, PHD Psychologist mother. Yup, even she believed that keeping my head down and not speaking up, even if I was right, was the proper thing to do. She raised me to always be grateful for what I had, and encouraged me not to speak up and ask for more, even if I deserved more.

For years, I tried to be the obedient girl my family wanted me to be, until one day I hit rock bottom, when I was verbally bullied on my school bus in middle school for my “chilanguita” (Mexico City) accent. From that moment on, I decided I would be calladita no more.

My first hard salary negotiation happened a few years later, when I was 15 years old.  I worked at a local radio station, co-hosting a show with my friend Marco Antonio Regil (yes, the now famous game show TV host!).  He thought we should both be getting paid more and encouraged me to negotiate along with him and if we did not get what we deserved, we would both quit our jobs.

I was so grateful for the opportunity to be working at the radio station, even though I knew I should be getting paid more, so the thought of upsetting my boss by asking for more money made me sick to my stomach. But I followed my friend’s lead and we took the owner of the radio station to brunch to renegotiate our deals over huevos rancheros.

Marco Antonio did most of the talking, and I was in awe of his self-confidence. He calmly stated the value we brought to the station, as there was no one in the market that understood ‘youth’ the way that we did. He then talked about all the great work we had been doing and cited our high ratings as a tangible example, before finally pointing out how we had been working at multiple live events on the weekends without receiving any extra pay.

Sure enough, we got our double raise and from that day on I took that important lesson in having self-confidence.

A few years ago I was invited to the White House to speak to a group of female entrepreneurs that the former First Lady, Michelle Obama was hosting. I was asked to share how my partners and I were able to raise $40 million and build mitú into the largest digital media brand for Latinos, especially since I had never raised money before or built a digital media brand in my entire career. My answer consisted of three words: Self-confidence and swagger.

What I’ve learned over the years is that we can’t be victims of our circumstances and do nothing about it. In fact, I often find myself consciously trying to reboot the ‘overly-eager-to-please’ Latina chip I’ve been carrying with me. For example, in every big meeting I take, I pump myself up and make myself feel extra confident and empowered when I see that no one else in the room looks like me. I have confidence knowing that no one else there has my insights or expertise, and that this knowledge is invaluable, both as a woman and a Latina, especially when Latinos are the ones driving economic growth and are the gateway to American youth in our country.

The faster that we can un-program our brains that in order to be good or liked, you need to be quiet and obedient, the faster we will be able to empower the next generation of Latina leaders to be strong, confident and expect no less then to be equal to everyone else.

Five Tips To Help You Get What You Deserve

Tip #1 — Try and get your boss or client out of the office and into a neutral setting when asking for a raise or closing a deal. Btw, providing them with good food is always a plus!

Tip #2 — When possible, try not to have important conversations with your boss or client too late in the afternoon, as you want to avoid them from being overly tired or not as receptive as you would like.

Tip #3 — Be prepared to clearly articulate why you deserve a raise or the compensation you expect with as many facts as you can.

Tip #4 — Being a Latina is an advantage. You have innate insights that are valuable to every company that needs to thrive and survive in this culturally diverse country of ours.

Tip #5 — Always carry yourself with confidence.

READ: Latinas Are One Of The Fastest Growing Demographics According To This Study And We’re Also Becoming Businesswomen

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The Spanish ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ Is Being Shared To Honor Hispanic Workers Fighting COVID-19

No Pos Wow

The Spanish ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ Is Being Shared To Honor Hispanic Workers Fighting COVID-19

There’s no denying that the world looks a lot different now than it did in 1947. And while the list of all of the positive changes that the decades stretching between now and then have done for the world and minorities, a recent campaign is also highlighting the ways in which our current president could take some notes on certain values the United States held dear during this time. Particularly ones that had been pressed for by one of our former presidents.

As part of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Good Neighbor Policy” effort, he worked to promote positive and healthy relations between the United States in Latin American countries.

At the time Rooseveltaimed to ensure that the North, Central and South American countries avoided breaking under the influence of Axis countries during World War II. As part of this campaign, Roosevelt comissioned a Spanish and a Portuguese version of the U.S. national anthem. According to Time Magazine he also “recruited Hollywood to participate in this Good Neighbor Policy; Walt Disney went on goodwill tour of South America, hoping to find a new market for his films, and ended up producing two movies inspired by the trip: Saludos Amigos (1942) and The Three Caballeros (1944). The Brazilian star Carmen Miranda also got a boost, and her role in The Gang’s All Here made her even more famous in the U.S. And alongside these cross-cultural exchanges, the U.S. government decided it needed an anthem that could reach Spanish speakers.”

According to NPR, Clotilde Arias, wrote wrote the translation at the end of World War II, was born in the small Peruvian city, Iquitos in 1901 and moved to New York City to become a composer when she was 22-years-old. Her version of the anthem is now part of an exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Now in an effort to support Latino communities affected by the coronavirus, the non-profit We Are All Human Foundation’s Hispanic Star campaign commissioned the a remake of the song.

Hoping to raise awareness of its Hispanic Recovery Plan and efforts to help to connect Hispanic small businesses and workers with resources during the pandemic, the campaign brought the old recording from obscurity.

For the song, the 2019 winner of the singing competition La Voz,  Jeidimar Rijos, performed “El Pendón Estrellado.” Or, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” 

The song has already received quite a bit of comments and support on Youtube.

Hang in there, fam. We can only get through this together.

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These Online Botanicas Will Satisfy The Bruja In You


These Online Botanicas Will Satisfy The Bruja In You

With young Latinxs reclaiming the bruja identity, the demand for access to novenas, herbs and other specially crafted ritual tools has grown tremendously. Luckily, these Latinx-owned online botanicas have made it easy for brujas, or anyone who wants to dive deeper into the practice, to get their hands on the goods. Whether you’re looking to conjure up more cash flow or secure some extra protection from those pesky mal de ojos, these shops have the magia you need.

1. The Flowerchild Bruja

You know you’ve received some real tesoro when you open your delivery and see the holographic cellophane. Unmistakable and unique products are what make The Flowerchild Bruja’s shop un cielo de flores. Garden Smudge Sticks adorned with colorful flowers and loose herbs packaged in clear hearts make this online botanica a must-visit if you’re looking to manifest more love and beauty into your life.

2. Brooklyn Brujeria

No forlorn-looking saints and pale stricken Marys here! Brookyn Brujeria offers a fresh and modern take on the classic bruja necessity of novena candles. At $10 a candle, you can enhance the vibrations and style of your space without blowing all your chavo. With intentions like Boss Bitch and F*ck Outta Here, these ain’t your abuelitas’ novenas.

3. The Hoodwitch Store

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Thank you for all of your love & support to those who have been readers and customers of @thehoodwitch over the years. ♥️You know truly how hard I work and that this is my livelihood and culture. Visual art and magic ARE my life and practice. Not a peach flavored “turquoise” glitter drink. My magic is in my blood, my magic is in my ability to bring life to my visions, it is creation & destruction. Over the last 6 years, I have been so honored and lucky to be featured in some of the largest media publications internationally not limited to Instagram. This is bigger than that and the creative team for Starbucks knew that. I have personally worked on consulting large companies in their design concepts this work comes naturally to me. “So what’s the big fuss?” My personal style has become synonymous with the visual aesthetic of my brand. No, I absolutely did not “invent” the crystal balls nor acrylic nails but What I created was a space for myself along with other POC to feel represented and have visual imagery that was representative of us. The colorful candles of my local botanicas, my gold jewelry, and my long nails clutching my crystals are certainly not “new” but to see them presented in a manner that I shared visually in this space was. Katherine de Vos Devine @devosdevine is a lawyer and art historian who wrote a powerful and insightful look as to what exactly is happening with this situation and we are sharing it in our story today because more than anything she truly gives the full tea of the situation. I can strip away the crystal balls, the nail art, and delete all of my beautifully curated photos but I will always be me, I will always be my grandmother’s voices and wisdom. I will create, and I will always know my value and my worth. I trust and believe that my ancestors and my guides are looking after me. These giants may have the money to bully artists, creatives, and small business but we know the truth and absolutely must not allow it. As a small business owner, I appreciate you standing with us in this uphill journey and even if it goes nowhere, at the end of the day I can laugh to myself knowing that Starbucks made a drink inspired by HW 🔮

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If you’re in the market for an obsidian scrying mirror, unique tarot decks or nail polish for your mystic manos, then The Hoodwitch Store is your one-stop bruja shop. Be sure to also check out the Bruja Bookshop tab, where you’ll find vintage, one-of-a-kind libros to up your witchy wisdom. The shop offers some rare finds en español as well. However, make sure you stay up to date on the latest inventory. These goods sell out fast!

4. House of Intuition

If you live in LA, you’ve most likely heard of House of Intuition. With four brick and mortar stores throughout the area, plus an online shop, it’s probably a wise investment to grab one of their “Success” intention candles. Their beautifully colored novenas aren’t the only reason to check out the shop, though. Seriously, this casa is staked with everything from crystals skulls, cauldrons and wands to a line called “Hair Mystics” featuring crystal-infused hair mists. You’ll be glad your intuition led you here.  

5. Lunar Magic Shop

Lunar Magic Shop is the super affordable and super thoughtful shop with some of our favorite bruja apparel. You will for sure want to grab the “My Mom Will Hex You” tee for the little one in your life or the “I Am My Own Sacred Place” one for yourself. While you’re at it, you might as well secure the “Motherhood”and “Student” crystal kit bags. This small shop definitely has the whole family’s brujeria needs in mind.

6. Curandera Press

While this shop is currently taking a small hiatus, they will re-launch on August 1. This gives us time to save up for a big vela haul. We could all use some divine intervention with lazy lovers and bad hair days, right? With Curandera Press’ “No Mas Amante Perezoso” and “Good Hair Day” velas, your prayers are answered. We’re excited to see what intentions they roll out next.

Read: In These Trying Times, Boricua Bruja Emilia Ortiz Provides A Digital Space For Healing

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