How Monica Veloz’s Family Helped Her Find Her Style
Monica Style Muse is quickly becoming one of the leading voices in beauty. She’s not just a killer style vlogger — she’s also elevating the profile of Afro-Latina women by speaking up on what her heritage means to her and how it’s shaped who she is.
To go with this exclusive shoot of Monica (and her fam!) by Renell Medrano and Juan Veloz, we asked her to tell us more about her upbringing and her deep love for her fam. Read her thoughts below and scroll down for the pics.
I decided to include my family in my photo shoot because they are the true reasons as to why I am who I am, from the confidence, from the way I carry myself, they define every single inch of me.
My family doesn’t play when it comes to our heritage, I always laugh when people always try to take my heritage away from me because the reality is my family doesn’t speak English, I learned everything I know about being Dominican because my Grandma came to America and doing so she sent for each of her kids including my mom to have a shot in America. I say that story so people understand why Im so proud to be an Afro Latina, and why representing my culture is important to me and Family they have been through a lot to make it here and if I don’t represent my heritage its then everything they have done would have been for nothing.
It’s important for people to understand race and ethnicity so having this platform its important that I educate people because a lot of times people just don’t know the difference. For example I’m a black woman, my heritage and my culture is Dominican, [and] the combination of those two powerful mixes makes an Afro-Latina. Saying I’m Dominican isn’t saying I’m not black, it’s specifically talking about my culture, my language my family history.
If I could go back in time, I would tell my younger self that not to care about what other people say. Yeah, they say you’re too dark to be Dominican and your skin looks like charcoal but guess what? In the years to come you will realize that your skin is beautiful and nobody will ever make you question that.
Jacket & Skirt TABLEAUX VIVANTS | Top NAMILIA | Rings NOIR | Shoes LAURENCE DACADE | Sunglasses SUPER BY RETROSUPERFUTURE
Coat NAMILIA | Bodysuit AMERICAN APPAREL
Bodysuit DEATH BY DOLLS | Cape TABLEAUX VIVANTS | Vest PHLEMUNS | Shoes LAURENCE DACADE
Jacket XULY BET | Dress TABLEAUX VIVANTS | Boots WINDSOR STORE
Choker NOIR | Bodysuit AMERICAN APPAREL | Dress & Belt JONATHAN SIMKHAI | Jacket IWFY | Shoes LAURENCE DACADE
Dress DEATH BY DOLLS | Top IWFY | Shoes LAURENCE DACADE | Choker IWFY | Jewelry NOIR
Monica: Dress IWFY | Robe JONATHAN SIMKHAI | Belt DROMe | Shoes LOU SILVERMAN | Aunt: Choker & Dress IWFY | Shoes LAURENCE DACADE | Mom: Trouser IWFY | Jewelry NOIR
Talent: Monica Veloz @Monicastylemuse/ youtube.com/Monicastylemuse
Wardrobe Stylist: Chris Pearson @cpstyle/cpstyle.com
Hair Stylist: Shauna Witten @hairbyshaa
MUA: Patrice Pugh @pattielepugh/ pattielepughmakeup.com
Set Coordinator: Deon Mims @deonmims
Mom (Monica Mercedes), Grandma (Monica Soriano), Aunt (Matilde Mercedes)