21 Mixed Latino Celebrities Talk About Their Heritage

The actor is Irish and Puerto Rican. When asked how she identifies herself on Very relevant podcast, she replied, “The first thing I usually say is that I’m half Puerto Rican. The Puerto Rican part is usually what I lead with because, just culturally, that’s how I grew up. I probably identify with my Puerto Rican family more than anything else… The Puerto Rican part of my family, it was just home to me.”

The actor has Afro-Panamanian, Mexican and European ancestry. During an interview with Remezcla, she said, “I’m someone who talks a lot about representation. It’s important to see more black women on screen. Sometimes there’s not necessarily a conversation around the nuance of what kind of black woman? I mean, we’re not a monolith. I feel encouraged when a young woman sees a film I’m in and says she can relate to me. I also feel that there are women of color and black women who see me in a movie and I don’t feel seen. This is real and true.”

“My grandmother came from Panama—from Colon—to the United States for education when she was a young woman in her 20s. She met my grandfather, who is black from Oklahoma. They had my aunt, and then they had my father. Then she was living as a black woman in the United States — because, well, people assumed she was, but her first language was Spanish. She didn’t learn English until she was 20 and already in the US. She had a rich cultural experience that was really full, but it was kind of erased because she came to this country and had to assimilate.”

The actor is Mexican, Danish, English, French and German. “Growing up in California in my grandmother’s house, surrounded by tías, tíos and all my cousins, I’ve always felt a deep connection to my Mexican-American roots,” she wrote in an article for Pop Sugar. She recalled her family’s history, from her great-grandparents’ immigration to the U.S. to the segregation they faced to their love of the performing arts.

“I always thought our ancestors were Spanish, but I learned through genetic testing that they were Native Americans, with roots that may go all the way back to the Mayan civilization. We’ve been here since the beginning!”

The singer is from Trinidad and Dominican. “I always feel like I’m representing the Dominican Republic because I love Dominicans, I love being Dominican,” she said during Instagram Live. “The fire of my heart as I act is because we are.”

The singer is Ecuadorian and Irish. During an interview with Latina magazine, she addressed criticism that she was not “Latina enough.” “I’ve been dealing with this all my life. I don’t speak the language fluently. And I’m split down the middle, half Irish and half Ecuadorian. I don’t have to prove my ethnicity to anyone. I know who I am.”

The actor is Mexican and Honduran. During an interview with Latina Style magazine, she said, “I’m half Mexican, half Honduran, first generation American. Being Hispanic is my life. I didn’t realize I was American until I was in high school, but I also didn’t know anything else until I was 3 or 4 years old. I spoke one language at home. I ate a kind of food. I was listening to a kind of music and then I went to school and all of a sudden, it was a whole other language and they were giving me food without tortillas. So navigating both worlds was my life and I still do to this day.”

The singer is Puerto Rican, Ashkenazi Jewish, Filipino and Spanish. He told Latina magazine: “There are a lot of mixed-race people who are in that gray area. A lot of people think, “That’s great. You’re in that gray area, so you can pass for whatever the hell you want.’ But it’s not like that at all. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. What we’re trying to do is educate people to know what it feels like so they never make someone feel that way again. Which is hard to do.. Because no one can see what we see, and no one can grow with what we’ve grown with.”

The singer is Mexican and Italian. During an interview with Dazed, she said: “I’ve always been very vocal about my background when it comes to immigration and my grandparents had to cross the border illegally. I would not have been born (otherwise). I value my last name very much.”

9.

Michaela Jay Rodriguez

The actor is black and Puerto Rican. In an essay written for the Emmys website, she wrote, “I grew up under a roof of driven individuals. My mother is African American, my father is half Puerto Rican, half African American, and my stepfather is African American. I knew at a very young age that as a young Afro-Latino, there were going to be some ups and downs for me.”

“There’s just not enough being done within the black and Latino communities in terms of representation, behind and in front of the cameras. Diversity has always been enforced in my household, so to not see it fully exposed and embraced breaks my heart. I feel like there’s a lot of exposure to our identity as people of color, but there’s still a lot that needs to be done.”

The actor is Mexican and Irish. “I’m proud to be Latino,” he said in a Ones to Watch video. He recalled a moment when a fan told him how much it meant to see a Latino host a show like Teen Wolf. “It really stuck with me and struck a chord with me. I have moments where it bursts out of me in ways I wouldn’t expect. And I love him.”

The actor is of Puerto Rican, Afro-Cuban, Irish and Native American descent. She told Latina magazine, “I think being Latina means being proud of your heritage. Even though I don’t speak Spanish fluently and can’t make every dish without a recipe, I’m 100% Boricua and proud of it.”

The actor is of Puerto Rican, English, German and Irish descent. “I’m half Puerto Rican. My mom’s whole side of the family is full Puerto Rican,” she said in a Teen Nick video. “Being Hispanic for me means being able to be a role model for kids, someone on TV who can represent who they are.”

The actor is Colombian, French and Cherokee. When discussing the difficulty of growing up mixed, she told Glamour, “My problem [was that] I looked white, but I come from a Colombian family. I think my struggle was trying to convince people that I was Spanish. In my own culture, I had trouble fitting in because I wanted to be that Colombian girl, but instead I was told, “You’re so pale.” It’s like “Well, I live in the states!” But this is my culture, this is who I am. We’re all about food, family and love.”

The actor is Afro-Latina (Dominican and Puerto Rican). “There’s something really beautiful about being first generation,” she told Glam Belleza Latina. “You’re in the middle and you have to get your parents and grandparents to the other side. And yet, once you’re on the other side, you want to preserve the beauty of tradition. I feel like I grew up in a very balanced way. My mother always wanted us to be who we were, but she told us fables and stories about where we came from.”

The actor is Cuban, Italian and Irish. In an Instagram post, she wrote: “Honestly, I would like to look more Latina so I can feel more Latina so I can feel closer to my dad and proud of my heritage… yes I wear my heritage on my skin. Just hard sometimes when no one thinks you are who you are…and everyone wants you to be something else :/ I LOVE MY CUBAN HERITAGE.”

The singer is black and Mexican. During an interview with Remezcla, he recalled that the music industry struggled to understand his intersectionality early in his career. “It was definitely a point of ‘Huh?’ We really don’t get it.’ A lot of my audience didn’t know I was Mexican.”

The actor has Mexican and European ancestry. “I learned to speak Spanish later in life. I learned after the age of 10,” she told Source. “I have family from Mexico and I wanted to be able to communicate with them, and my dad is Caucasian, so we never spoke it at home. And then, in some ways, it was a really great skill because actually now with television covering the range that it covers, it’s a good skill set.”

The actor is Dominican and Puerto Rican. Throughout her career, she conformed to the roles she played because she did not want to contribute to the typical Latino stereotypes in cinema. She once said, “I shy away from sexually explicit content because it’s the most exploited aspect of filmmaking and television for Latina women.”

The singer is Jamaican, Puerto Rican and Irish. During an interview with People Chica in 2021, she said, “My paternal grandmother was born and raised in Puerto Rico. She is still there now. My father never studied Spanish and he never taught me it, and I want to learn. I haven’t been to Puerto Rico since I was 16, but it’s a huge part of my childhood. I remember her coming and cooking plátanos for us.”

The actor is black and Mexican. During an interview with Refinery 29, she shared that she grew up inspired by Afro-Latina actors like Tessa Thompson and Zoe Saldaña. Now the young girls are staring at her. “It’s such an honor to be a part of [Never Have I Ever], not to mention this performance. It really opened my eyes a lot and really humbled and inspired me so much.”

21.

And finally, Oscar Isaac

The actor is Guatemalan and Cuban. He said NBC News“I was born in Guatemala and I have a Cuban father, but he left when I was a little baby, baby. We moved to Baltimore, then lived in Louisiana for a while, then settled in South Florida. I actually just got it back from Guatemala, which was a lot of fun. I got to travel to Lake Atitlan and Antigua.”

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