Hasta La Vista Havana

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Tropic Babe Set: Free People | Sandals: Call it Spring

Guanabo Beach

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Swimsuit: Bliss Bandits | Sunglasses: Ray Ban

In Paradise with Volcom

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

#TheNightIsYoung

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Jacket: Superdry | Dress: Superdry | Sandals: Superdry

Cuba

I am writing this post 10 days after I returned from Cuba, but it feels like my heart is still there. I loved that country so much that to be honest I don't even know where to start talking.

I was never crazy about going to Cuba. I love traveling so of course I was curious to go there one day, the same way that I feel about several other countries, but it was not on my top 10 list of places to go. This trip just happened thanks to a group of friends who wanted to go there and basically put Lindsey and I in their plans.

As usual, I did a lot of research before going, which was great because there was basically no internet there, so it was nice to have a plan with some things to do. However, one of the best parts of the trip was not having internet and the things we did without planning, just living the moment.

When we arrived in Havana and started to walk around the streets of Havana Vieja, a lot of feelings and questions came to my mind. Being in a communist country that basically stopped in time in 1959 made me think about many things that I hadn't paid much attention before. At first, I felt sorry for the young people growing up there. I wondered how my life would've been like if I was born in Cuba. I like to dream big, work hard after my goals, and I'm always looking for something new to use as a purpose. I thought that I would hate to be from a place that has even less opportunities than Brazil.

And then, on the second day of the trip we met David, a young Cuban man who was so intelligent, charismatic, honest, and above all happy. We met him in a bar and he ended up showing us a few places around Havana, and at the end of the night I found out he didn't have a home. He told me that he eats and sleeps at different friends' houses every night. My eyes were filled with tears right away. I just didn't want to believe or accept that such an incredible young man had to live that way. I started thinking about why some people are born with so many privileges while others have nothing. I closed my eyes and thanked for all the opportunities I have. I felt stupid for complaining about such stupid small things sometimes. And I went to bed thinking about David and the Cuban people.

The next day we found David again, which was not very easy considering we had no internet and no cell phones. And it was on that day that I started to realize that the lack of opportunities and ambition is what makes the Cuban people so happy. Every time I looked at David he had a huge smile on his face. He introduced us to some of his friends, and they were always singing, joking around, and laughing. That was when I realized how wrong I was at the first day when I arrived in Cuba. I noticed that David, who had nothing, lives happier than many wealthy business men I know in New York. People who work and stress out so much that they barely have a chance to enjoy the money that they make or the stuff that they own. And no matter what, at the end of the day, life goes by so fast and can't take nothing from here.

I came back to NY wanting to enjoy more and worry less. I want to spend more quality time with my friends, to sit down to talk without worrying about the time, and to not use every spare hour to do an extra job.

The trip to Cuba ended up being much more than another beautiful place to see. It touched me in ways that I did not expect and somehow changed the way I see certain things. I can not wait to go back and spend more time to learn even more about this incredible place.

outfit 1| outfit 2 | outfit 3

First day in Havana Vieja

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Jumpsuit: Tobi | Sandals: Call it Spring

Sunday on the roof

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Last Sunday I spent part of my afternoon helping my friend Chelsea to "build" her roof. She lives in Bushwick and has an amazing backyard that happens to also be a private roof. She has incredible roommates and they have decided to make the roof the coolest spot for us to hang out this summer.

First the idea was just to make it nicer and more comfortable, but then we started to get more creative and promises of palm trees and bath tubs have been rolling around and I am so excited to help making this place look incredible. I will probably be posting more photos from the #VanRoof this summer, and I have actually started shooting some videos of the renovation/decoration process so stay tuned for more.

Now about my outfit, summer has not even started yet and I am already wearing my crop tops. I have actually forbidden myself to buy any more crop tops because so many let see how that goes lol. But I found this red one about a month ago for $5.90 at Zara and since that's basically what I paid for my coffee I decided to just get it. Not super proud, but I definitely love the color. I also love my new skirt from H&M which was also super cheap (I think it was $34.90) and I will be wearing it all the time this summer. And lastly but not least, how hot are my new ray bans? I can't take them off my face!!

Sunglasses: Smart Buy Glasses | Crop top: Zara | Skirt: H&M | Shoes: Steve Madden

T&J Wedding

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Last Saturday I felt really honored to be at my friends Theresa and Jessica wedding in Brooklyn. Jessica has been friends with my girlfriend Lindsey Thoeng for a long time, and I met the couple right in the beginning when I started dating Lindsey. They are both so beautiful, have an incredible vibe to be around, and their wedding was the most beautiful one I have ever been.

First of all, it was my first lesbian wedding, so I was super excited. And then these two sutnning girls walk down the aisle with so much peacefulness and graciousness. You could tell through their shinning eyes how much that moment was important for them.  

I feel like I could barely breath during the ceremony. I just felt this intense urge of happiness, love and joy, and then I started to cry once they started their vows. Theresa is a DJ and after the ceremony the dance floor was LIT! Every single person was dancing and there was even a drag queen and dancers performing. But beside the unforgettable party that they threw, the best part was to be there celebrating their love. Everyone there had a huge smile in their face.  

I went home feeling more hopeful than ever that love is a beautiful thing and it can move mountains. Cheers to T&J!

Dress: Tobi | Sandals: Aldo

Black Leather Skirt

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Bodysuit: Boohoo | Leather Skirt: Asos | Boots: Stuart Weitzman

Barre shoulder & red lips

Glasses: GlassesUSA | Top: similar here | Jeans: Twenty5a

When I was a little kid I used to ask my mom if I could wear glasses. I don't really understand why but I wanted it so badly. Now, 20 years after I am finally able to wear a cute pair of glasses. They are not real prescription glasses, but just an accessory to make an outfit or look more interesting. I matched it with red lips and a bare shoulder to add a more sexy touch, and went for lunch in the Flatiron District on a beautiful sunny day. 

Super Dry SS Collection

Dress: Super Dry | Shoes: Super Dry

Temptu Lipstick

It took me a while to become a fan of lipsticks. I started using eyeliner basically every day when I was only 13 years old, then got addicted to mascara, foundation, and blush. But lipstick kind sounded a little outdated, and it always made me feel like I was wearing too much makeup. Until the matte lipsticks became a thing a couple years ago. Now I can never leave the house without the last touch on my lips.

This Temptu kit has been my go to since I got it last March. I love how the lipsticks feel creamy but still delivers a natural matte look. The kit comes with 4 beautiful shades and they are basically all I need for every occasion. 

From top to bottom: Rose Velveteen, Blushed Suede, Plush Plum, and Jet Rouge

My favorite color for everyday is the Blushed Suede, and the Plush Plum for when I am in the mood for a more dramatic look. I have to confess that when I put the Jet Rouge (the darkest one) on I absolutely loved it! I felt so feminine and powerful. But I haven't had the chance to use it outside of my house yet. I feel like I need a special occasion for it, which you guys will see for sure on my Instagram soon: I'm planning to wear it on a night out in my upcoming trip to Cuba.

So glad I stopped being boring and started exploring lipstick colors haha, What are your favorite colors and trends for lips? Help out this lipstick newbie girl! 

Shop the Temptu Marsala Lip Collection

Yoga at Yogaworks

I’m the type of person who loves to try out a bunch of different workout classes: from boxing to dancing anything that seems challenging sparks a interest in me.

Yoga is one of the classes that it’s pretty challenging for me because I’m not flexible at all, and I usually prefer the classes which I run/jump/lift and sweat like a crazy person. But there were so many times that I did yoga and enjoyed it so much that I decided that in 2007 I was going to get better at it. I told myself that I was going to practice more often to improve my flexibility, breathing, posture, and that way enjoy yoga every time I do it, because nothing compares to that peaceful feeling afterwards.

I got super happy when I started doing classes at Yogaworks. First of all, the stuff there is super nice, and the studios are so beautiful, with great lighting that makes me feel relaxed by just being there. Their instructors are amazingly patient, and capable of helping everybody in the class. I especially loved how they are very specific about how you should do each move, explaining how your posture should be, and how you should feel.

And then I decided to try the Coreworks class and it made me fall in love even more with the studio. I came to the class thinking I was going to nail it because I work my core so much doing boxing and total body conditioning at the gym, and I was extremely surprised about how there are many other exercises to work your core, targeting different muscles that I didn’t even know I had. I felt my abs tighter after the class (yay) and broke a sweat just the way I love. Definitely recommend trying that class! In NYC I did it with the instructor Lynette Johnson and she’s wonderful!

Now, how cute is my sportswear from Boohoo? I’m kind obsessed with it and got some compliments in the locker room (yay again). This set is super comfortable and is a great deal for the price. The link to shop it is below:

Sports bra: Boohoo | Leggings: Boohoo

Check out more more outfit from Boohoo Fitness

 

 

 

Happy in pink

Photography: Lindsey Thoeng

Sweatshirt dress: Topshop | Boots: Steve Madden

Keep me where the light is

Sandals: Alysia | Jeans: DSTLD | Top: Makemechic

Get the look:

Love affair with Moroccanoil

My love affair with Moroccanoil started a long time ago, even before I moved to the USA. And I’ve been here for 5 years already! I remember that when I was coming to live here I was excited about a lot of things, and I have to confess that one of them was the fact that I could easily find Moroccanoil everywhere here. Things has changed since then and I can also easily find them in Brazil now, they are an unanimous obsession among all my friends there.

One of the things that makes me love Moroccanoil is the smell of it. My hair smells SO delicious after washing it with the shampoo and conditioner!

But my truly favorites from Moroccanoil has always been the Moroccanoil Treatment and the Intense Hydrating mask. I use the oil every time I wash my hair. I only need to put one little drop before I dry it and the results are so noticeable: my hair gets a natural glow and a healthier look. And the mask is saving my hair since I got highlights. These two products are a must if you want stronger and beautiful hair.

Lastly but not least, I have recently started to use their dry shampoo for dark hair and it’s so genial! I have used other brands of dry shampoo before and I love them too, but since they were not made for dark hairs they made my hair white because of the powder. Then I have to remove the excess, which can be annoying. So the dry shampoo is definitely going to become a must in my bathroom cabinet as well. And apart from the color, the smell of it it’s delightful (I know I’ve talked about the smell of their products already, but it’s so good I have to say it again haha).

I wanna make it here

Oh New York City! I think I've never felt the mix of hate and love for anything else as I feel for NYC. I hate the comute, the winter, the expensive rent, the lack of space, the traffic, the fact that I don't have laundry inside my apartment, the mean people in the streets, and the constant feeling of not having enough time to do it all. The last one I think is what bothers me the most. One of the greatest thing about living in NYC is the variety of things to do here. You will never get bored. And although I love that, it also makes me feel like I am not doing enough, because there is so much to do. But I definitely love that "problem" in the same amount I hate it. Right now, this city is the place where I keep my creativity and dreams alive. There is something about the streets, the buildings, and the lights, that gives me the feeling of "I wanna make it here". This feeling is stronger than my hate for any of those things I mentioned in the beginning of my post. So every time I start feeling tired or discouraged I try to stop complaining about the bad and focusing in the good part of this sleepless city. I reunite with my friends, shoot some cool photos with my girlfriend Lindsey, and stop to think about all the opportunities that I can only find here. Hopefully, sometime soon I will achieve all the goals I have in mind for this place. 

Dress: Asos | Bag: Melie Bianco | Boots: Stuart Weitzman

Highlights of my NYFW

I have a feeling that in NYC time goes by faster than everywhere else, and I am always surprised by how soon New York Fashion Week comes around again and again. Although its a pretty busy time for me, and it can also be very hard when is extremely cold or snowing, I love that week so much. Before I moved to NYC I used to dream about going to the shows and seeing the collections on the runway, so I try to keep that dream alive and appreciate the bright side of it. 

This season I was really happy to see the show of Noon by Noor and Leanne Marshall again. The clothes at Noon by Noor were so modern and on point, I could wear everything! And it was great to see Leanne Marshall's show for the 4th time in a row. She's so good with the drape of her gowns and they are always flowy. I also love how this time she introduced some pants and bright reds to her collection. Maybe its a reflection of the power woman that she's becoming.

raquel-paiva-wear-the-arrivals-nyfw-public-school-backstage

Another show that I was so pleased with was Farm's presentation. Farm is a Brazilian brand and they have really cool prints and pieces to rock at the beach or on a tropical vacation.

raquel-paiva-wear-the-arrivals-nyfw-public-school-backstage

Lastly, my favorite moment of fashion week was to have the opportunity to be at the Public School backstage ( huge thanks Aveda). I always love to go to the backstages and see the show being prepared, but Public School was such a cool experience. I am a big admirer o Maxwell Osbourne and Dao-Yi Chow so it was nice to see them working from close. The Aveda team was lovely as always and they made the models look even more gorgeous than they already are. And I got to see the clothes first hand as the models were making their way to the catwalk. The clothes were dope as usual, but this time with a special message: "Make America New York". We definitely need to keep reminding each other about love and resistance, and I was beyond happy seeing this message on Public School show. I can't wait to get one of those hats.