The City Magazine’s Top 30 Under 30 award is a well-known honor that has been bestowed upon some of El Paso’s most talented and ambitious residents, those who have made an impact on the community despite their young age. I’ve always been hesitant to participate in any kind of contest like this, but to my surprise, a few close friends nominated me this year. To my greater surprise — I won!

I’m incredibly honored to be named amongst the Top 30 Under 30, especially since my journey has been full of risks, adventures and pushing myself to my limits. In 2010, I started my career as unpaid intern, just so that I could be a part of the retail industry. Years later, after I was hired as a stylist, I took another unpaid internship as a Buyer. I proved my mettle, learned from my mentor about how to run a high-end retail boutique and grew ready to take on my own store.

During this time, I opened up the first blow dry bar in El Paso, and along side my partners, created a new phenomenon in the city. Staying true to my vision of contributing to the growth of El Paso, I stepped away from the blow dry bar in 2016 to pursue my dream and open GAL Fashion. My vision was to cater to my clients as though they were my friends (and most have become friends!), to do away with commission-based sales, and to style with honesty and integrity. To this day, I tell everyone who I style that if I am working for them, they are representing GAL, and therefore they will always leave looking and feeling their best.

After our first successful year, we expanded space and services to closet organizing and consultations. It was then, after seeing countless gowns that had been forgotten after one wear, I was inspired to create a 501c3 nonprofit organization called The Cinderella Foundation. The Cinderella Foundation accepts donated gowns at GAL, and where underserved girls can visit and enjoy the same styling experience as other customers at no cost. This is a cause close to my heart, since I felt insecure and out of place in high school.

The City Magazine asked a few fun questions during my interview that I feel are worth sharing:

Q: What is your favorite karaoke song? A: Hotel California by The Eagles

Q: What is your favorite TV show to binge? A: Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Q: What do you love about El Paso? A: I truly feel it’s the land of opportunity! Although I will commute eventually, I will never leave the place I call home.

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We may be more than half way through the year, but I’ve realized that it’s never too late to create goals for yourself. January 1st isn’t the only time of year for goal-setting and self-improvement

The beauty of life is that you can wake up one day and make a decision to change. To become a better you.

Now actively making decisions is just the beginning, you have to follow the decision with an action.

For instance I will share with you a few of my goals and how I actively am working on them.

Discipline- this is something I have lacked my whole life, the discipline to wake up early, to exercise, to read. The action is setting my alarm clock everyday for 6:30am even on weekends to train my body. Push myself to be active daily even if its only for 30 minutes and read partial of a chapter or even better listen to a podcast to learn.

( In these scenarios, I am not necessarily cheating the system I am tweaking them to see what works best for me.)

Taking Risks: This one is scary, most recently I went on a trip with the Gals to go zip lining, I had fear and anxiety the entire time, from the drive up the mountain to the final action of the zipline, I never knew how fearful I really was of adventure. But that’s ok, we all have things we are afraid of what I learned that fear is like the boogyman, its only real if we let it become real. So I am actively doing things that challenge my fear and am following the 5 second rule. It takes 5 seconds to push yourself to do an action that’s how long it takes the brain to say YES or NO. So like Nike I am just doing it, scary but so fulfilling and liberating.

Commitment: when you commit to something the right thing to do is to stay committed “consistency” in good or bad times. Have you ever been hurt and said, that’s it im done with you! ( a friend, a co-worker, a marriage?) In life if we make a decision we should stay committed and follow through. Action? When I am in a situation when a friend hurts me, a customer, anyone the mail man even instead of dismissing them I am actively forgiving and pushing myself to continue what we began, why? Because I want to be committed, I want to be loyal and I want to actively be there for the people I surround myself with in good times or bad and I am going to actively let people off the hook because no one is perfect.

In conclusion this blog is about encouraging my readers to really make goals and reach for the stars, why? Because I belive all of you can set goals, accomplish them and be a better you!

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Dav 4383 Dav 4394 Dav 4424 Dav 4398 After a few years as a business owner filled with many experiments with trends and colors (some more successful than others), I’m happy to report that I’ve finally identified my true style. Having access to hundreds of pieces of clothing at GAL, I’ve tried it all—and I can honestly say that I now know what I like: sophisticated looks with a playful edge, reserving dresses for special occasions. Blazers and jackets are my go-tos regardless of the heat. There’s just something about that third piece that says “game on,” almost like a superhero cape.

Of course, I want to be taken seriously, but after a lot of trial and error, I’ve come to the conclusion that serious (or polished) doesn’t equal boring. Even though I am 26, I can’t really pull off the mini skirt or sequin shorts the way I used to. I am a full-fledged adult, so it’s a fu challenge to find the right balance between grown up and playful chic.

One thing I hear often at the GAL from clients is, “but im a mom”, when considering more daring looks or even pieces outside of one’s comfort zone. Or worse yet, “I can’t wear that, I’m X years old!” Wrong! Just because you’re a mom or out of your 20s DOES NOT mean your options for dressing stylish dwindle. On the contrary, you should embrace your age, your journey and your body.

Forget about numbers; whether you’re 30 or 60, the most important element of an outfit is confidence. Exude that and you will glow! My best advice is for my clients not to hide behind dull colors or dark fabrics— embrace yourself and appreciate what God has given you. I invite you to come into GAL and try what makes you feel like the best version of you.

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Years ago, I had a dream and a vision of one day having my own store. My desire was not just about fashion, or styling or even selling. It was about the relationships I made in my time as a sales associate and then fashion buyer, and a wish to connect and share my passions. Today, I’ve got a year of “business owner” on my resume and I have to say, it wasn’t as scary or as hard as I thought it would be. I realized that by taking a risk, and a leap of faith, you can either sink or swim, and through hard work, I swam this year.

Sure, I haven’t reached all my goals for where I’d be now, and I have much to learn, but I’ve learned many lessons in just this short time. From business to personal growth experiences, this has been journey and an adventure, and I’m honestly proud (and not afraid to admit) how much fire I have inside, to excel, to persevere and to succeed. I believe that we all have the potential within us to achieve our goals and unleash the power within through positive self-talk, self motivation, eagerness and willingness to change and to make better choices than yesterday. I believe taking responsibility, change and growth, and not allowing yourself to play the victim, to use every situation as something that happens for us, not to us.

With all that I have learned this year, I take away with me something better than financial success: Experience. I am inspired and motivated to have an excellent 2017, with my husband, with my Gals and with my baby dachshunds, only the sky is the limit. The most precious thing we have in life is time. So friends, don’t waste it.

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One of my goals at the beginning of this year was to create a “vlog” for YouTube, not only to address the many styling questions we receive on social media, but also to offer fashion insight even separate from this blog. We launched our first video this summer, and since then, I feel like our whole team had really grown stronger and with each video, we are able to better express ourselves and our passion for fashion.

Before each vlog, resident GAL stylist and newly crowned Miss El Paso, Jessenia Cruz, and I, brainstorm topics and ideas. We watch other fashion vlogs and research trends and topics to pinpoint which subjects our subscribers and viewers would most like to see. In the beginning, we’d rehearse our segment, but we’ve learned that it’s best to just have fun, say what comes naturally, and let the conversation flow. The few times we tried to memorize a script, we sounded too rehearsed, so we much prefer having real conversations that just happen to be on camera—conversations just like we would in the store.

After we generate our topic and set a shoot date, our set director, Ladonna Apodaca, arranges all the visual details. Ladonna’s background is in set design, so having her professional, keen eye on our team is such a gift. Next, we call in makeup artist Claudia Castillo, from the Medspa at Southwest Plastic Surgery, who matches our makeup to the set lighting, and creates specific looks based on our story for that particular video. This really helps to set the tone!

Finally, videographer Tony Cedillo films our segment, which actually takes less time to shoot than the prep work. Jessenia and I have a blast together, so the filming is easy. Tony then takes the footage and perfects the sound, editing and music.

This week, Jessenia and I are proud to share our vlog about holiday dressing and styling tips for all occasions this season. We hope you enjoy watching Gal Talk just as much as we love creating it. Please subscribe to our channel Gal Talk and write in the comment box for more ideas you want to see on our future episodes!

Cheers and Happy Holidays!!

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