60 Latinas You Never Knew Were Latino!

We're loving actress Meagan Good on the new NBC series Deception, and we've always known that this beautiful Afro-Latina is a talented actress! But what many people don't know is that the 31-year-old Good is Latina! Check out Good and 60 other Latina stars you never knew were Latino!


Stacey Dash, 44

She's best known for her hilarious turn as Dionne, Alicia Silverstone’s bitchy BFF in the 1995 film Clueless. But did you know that Stacey—who went on to star in the television spinoff of the same name from 1996-1999—is actually part Mexican?


Morena Baccarin, 33

The Homeland star played Inara Serra on Whedon's hit sci-fi show, Firefly and reprised her role for the feature film Serenity (2005), a space Western film written and directed by Whedon. But in real life, Morena isn’t from another planet—she’s from Brazil! Born in Rio de Janeiro, her mother is Brazilian TV actress Vera Setta, and her father is the Brazilian Record TV News Coordinator, Fernando Baccarin.


Alex Meneses, 46

The gorgeous Alex Meneses tends to play Italian women on television. She was Cookie, Joey Tribiani’s (Matt LeBlanc) sister on the hit comedy, Friends, and she's best known for her role as Robert Barone's (Brad Garrett) sexy Italian lover, Stefania Fogagnolo on the CBS sitcom, Everybody Loves Raymond. Still, Meneses isn't Italian—she is of Ukrainian American descent on her mother’s side and of Mexican American descent on her father’s side. The talented actress has said that she was inspired to pursue a career in acting after seeing a fellow Latina (Rita Moreno) in West Side Story (1961).

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Vanessa Marcil, 41: This beautiful actress is probably best known for her role as saucy vixen, Gina Kincaid on Aaron Spelling’s hit series, Beverly Hills, 90210, but few know Marcil by her birth name: Sally Vanessa Ortiz. Vanessa was born in Indio, California to parents, Patricia Marcil and Peter Ortiz--a self-made Mexican millionaire!


Kimberly Guilfoyle, 42

Who says there are no Latinos on FOX News? Kimberly Guilfoyle, a regular contributor on FOX News Channel’s Geraldo at Large, The O’Reilly Factor and Hannity and Colmes — and the former host of the FOX one-hour crime-based program, The Lineup — was born in San Francisco to a Puerto Rican mother and an irish father. 


Cassie, 22:
R&B singer Cassie (aka Cassandra Ventura), who gave us the hit song “Me & U” back in 2006 and is currently working on her new album, draws inspiration from artists like Jennifer Lopez and La Lupe. She can definitely relate to these Latinas, at least in part: Her mom is half Mexican and half West Indian, while her dad is Filipino. “I’m a little melting pot,” she told Complex Magazine in 2008.


Meagan Good, 30

We loved her as Jacqui Dandrige, Gabrielle Union's codependent little sister in the rom-com, Deliver Us From Eva (2003), and we know her from all of the Black women she’s played on television, on shows like My Wife and KidsMoesha and The Steve Harvey Show. But Meagan Good says she’s not just African American—she’s also part-Latina. "My mother’s father was Cherokee and something else. My dad’s mother is Puerto Rican and African American, and his father was from Barbados," says Good.

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Alexa Vega, 21: She plays American teenager Ruby Gallagher on the ABC Family comedy, Ruby and the Rockets, but Vega—who first gained recognition for starring as Carmen Cortez in Robert Rodriguez’s Spy Kids—is actually half-Colombian.


Sara Paxton, 21: Like David, Sara’s got blonde hair and piercing blue eyes, but don’t let that fool you—this is one young lady who’s very proud to be Latina! The daughter of a Scottish and Irish father, Sara’s mother, Lucia was born In Monterrey, Mexico and raised in Ciudad Acuña. Last year, when we asked Sara how people react when they find out she’s Mexican. “They don’t believe me at all," she told us. "I think its because they have this stereotype of what a Hispanic girl is supposed to look like, and I don’t fit that typical look,” We’re proud to have you as one of us, Sara!


Jeanine Mason, 20:  When Jeanine Mason won the fifth season of FOX’s hit dance competition, So You Think You Can Dance, no one knew this brilliant dancer was Cuban. But the Miami-born Latina—whose aunt sent her pastelitos de guayaba y queso and croquetas during the competition—told Latina.com she couldn’t be prouder of her background: “My entire family is Cuban: My dad’s family and my mom’s family! I am a first-generation cubana americana!”


Vanna White, 54

You know her as the legendary hostess of Wheel of Fortune, but White – whose very last name hints that she’s Caucasian— is actually part-Latina! You see, “White” is not Vanna’s real apellido—it’s the name she took from her stepfather Herbert Stackley White Jr., a former real estate agent in North Myrtle Beach.  Not much is known about Vanna’s real father whose name is Miguel Angel Rosich, except that he was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico and abandoned the family when she was a child. Fun fact: Rumor has it that one of White's ancestors, whose last name was Barnes, was one of the first mayors of the city of Ponce, Puerto Rico.


Jenni "JWoww" Farley, 23: Snooki’s partner in crime, JWoww is a beautiful girl with a great body who is extremely loyal to her friends. (Hey! We should’ve known she was Latina!) But we admit we had no idea she was until the reality star visited Fox News Channel’s The Strategy Room and admitted that she is not of Italian descent, but rather Spanish. We admit, that made us say, "Wow!"


Anita Page (1910-2008)

Anita Page (AKA Anita Evelyn Pomares) was an immensely popular actress of the silent film era, who reportedly received more fan mail than anyone else on the MGM lot (save of course for Gretta Garbo). Anita was of Spanish ancestry and her grandfather was a consul from El Salvador. During the 1920s, she was often referred to as “a blond, blue-eyed Latin.”

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Jordana Brewster, 30

This brunette bombshell’s first role was as all-American teen queen, Delilah Profitt in Robert Rodriguez’s cult film, The Faculty (1998). But Jordana was actually born in Panama City, Panama and her mother, Maria João, is a former Sports Illustrated swimsuit model from Brazil. Jordana lived in Brazil for several years and speaks fluent Portuguese.



Bella Thorne, 13

Bella Thorne has been a series regular on shows like HBO’s Big Love and the Disney Channel series, Dance Dance Chicago and some say she’s the next Miley Cyrus. If so, then the next Miley Cyrus is definitely Cuban!


Tatyana Ali, 31: She’s one of the greatest child actors of all time, and has a reputation for being a great R & B singer. But there’s one thing that Tatyana “Marisol” Ali isn’t known for: Her Latin background. Yes, folks, Ashley Banks of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and the star of the current BET web series, Buppies, is of Afro-Panamian descent on her mother’s side!


Sonya Walger, 35: She might have a thick British accent, but Sonya, who stars as Dr. Olivia Benford on ABC’s FlashForward, is actually half-Argentinean. “My dad is from Buenos Aires and my mom is English” Sonya told Latina.com last year: “I didn’t grow up [in Argentina], but my parents brought me up bilingual and I traveled back and forth my whole life, so I feel English, but I also feel very Argentine.” Sonya says her favorite Argentinean food includes empanadas, carne and chorizo. Atta girl!


Trina, 32:
Usually described as raw and raunchy, Miami emcee Trina has been rapping for 10 years now. And in all that time, we bet you didn’t realize she is half Dominican. That’s probably because the Latin side was never part of her upbringing. “My dad’s family is from the Dominican Republic. I don’t really know them like that; he hasn’t been a part of my life since forever,” she once told BallerStatus.net. Regardless, she made an effort to learn Spanish in high school but it didn’t stick. Fortunately, that hasn’t hurt her music career. Her latest, and fifth, album is titled Amazin’.


Joanna Kerns, 57

From 1985-1992, Joanna Kerns played the quintessential American mom Maggie Seaver in the family comedy classic, Growing Pains. Kerns was born Joanna Crussie DeVarona and is of mixed Mexican/Irish descent (her father David is Mexican American and her mother Martha is Irish-American).


Majandra Delfino, 30

Actress Majandra Delfino (Roswell, State of Georgia), was born in Caracas, Venezuela to a Cuban mother and Venezuelan father. She got the name Majandra because her older sister, Marieh couldn’t pronounce her birth name (Maria Alejandra) and gave her the nickname Majandra, which stuck. Majandra, who is proud of her Latin roots, tells Latina.com that people in L.A. have a hard time believing she’s Latina. “People here are very limited in their exposure to South Americans,” she says. “They say, 'But you're white!' and I say 'yes we come in pale too.' Then they go, 'but you have green eyes!' and I'm like, 'Yup we have that too.' And then they go, 'but you don't look Mexican!' and I'm like, 'Because I'm not.' it's pretty hilarious. When you have a name like Majandra, the conversation just can't help but come up!” she adds. 


Q'orianka Kilcher, 21

With a first name like “Q’orianka,” few people think of Q’orianka Kilcher — who is best known for her role as Pocahontas in the Terrence Malick film, The New World (2005) — as a Latina. But in fact, the name Q’orianka translates to “golden eagle” in Quechua, the official language of the Inca Empire and an official language in Peru. Kilcher’s mother is of Swiss descent, but her father is a native South American artist from Madre de Dios, Peru. In 2006, the talented young actress — who speaks fluent Spanish — won an Alma Award for Best Latin Actress in a Feature Film for The New World


Alexis Bledel, 28: For seven seasons, we watched Alexis play Rory Gilmore on the hit CW series, Gilmore Girls, but until Latina put her on our cover, few people knew she was one of us. Bledel was born in Houston, Texas to a Mexican mother named Nanette Dozier and an Argentinean dad named Martin. Her first language is Spanish, and she even showed off her Español during an episode of Gilmore Girls.


Lana Parrilla, 34

When people first meet Lana Parrilla—one of the stars of ABC's new drama, Once Upon A Time—they don't believe she's Latina. “They think I’m definitely European, but they don’t think I’m Puerto Rican at all…ever," says Parrilla, who's half-Boricua and half-Sicilian. "Maybe it’s because I don’t have the voluptuous figure of a Puerto Rican," she says with a laugh. But Lana adds that she's proud to be Latina and says that some of her features are very Latin. "I have the wide set eyes and the full lips, and those are very distinct Latin features. My hairline definitely is Puerto Rican," she says. 

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Maiara Walsh, 22: She is best known for her roles as the Indian character, Meena Paroom on the Disney Channel series, Cory and the House, and as Eva Longoria Parker’s Mexican niece, Ana, on ABC’s Desperate Housewives, but Maiara Walsh is 100% Brazilian.


Eva LaRue, 43: This Long Beach, California native who stars on CSI: Miami is a mix of many different ethnicities, including French, Dutch and Scottish ancestries. But she’s also Puerto Rican. LaRue may not have a “typical Latin look,” but she’s always gone out of her way to represent for Latinas by playing Latin roles. She was the second Lina Lorenzo (George’s Lopez’s sister) on The George Lopez Show, and currently stars as Natalia Boa Vista on CSI.


Linda Christian, (1923-2011)

Forget Halle Berry—the very first Bond girl was a Latina! Actress Linda Christian, who was born Blanca Rosa Welter in Tamico, Tamaulipas, Mexico to a Mexican mom and a Dutch father, played the first Bond girl when she starred in the 1954 TV adaptation of the James Bond novel, Casino Royale

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Linda Perry, 46

Seasoned producer and songwriter Linda Perry is known for founding two record labels, and for writing and producing hit songs like Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful,” Pink’s "Get This Party Started” and Gwen Stefani’s “What You Waiting For?” But few people know that the talented producer—who has a Portuguese American mother—is half-Brazilian on her father's side. 

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Fergie, 35:
Black Eyed Peas singer Fergie may just be 1/18th Mexican but we’re claiming her as one of us. How could we not? In 2008, she broke down her roots for Latina.com: “My dad’s grandmother is from Guanjauanto. I’m very proud of it; that’s probably where I get my fire!,” said the Duchess, who also has Irish and Scottish heritage.


Heather Hemmens, 21

Though some people might think she’s African American, Heather Hemmens, who played fan-favorite Alice Verdura on the CW’s hit series Hellcats is 100% Latina and proud of it! The part-Costa Rican actress—whose father is White, recently told Latina.com: "When someone says ‘Tell me about yourself,’  I wish I could answer simply, ‘I'm Latina!’ There's not much more to it. I love dancing, eating and I have sass that I make no apologies for."


Shayne Lamas, 24: Don’t let the blond hair fool you! Shayne Lamas—star of the E! reality series, Leave it to Lamas—is the daughter of 90s heartthrob Lorenzo Lamas, and like her father, she’s proud to be from Argentina.


Helena Bonham Carter, 44 

Best known for her role as Marla Singer in Fight Club, and her Oscar-nominated turn in this year’s The King’s Speech, Helena Bonham Carter was born in Golders Green, London to a British father named Raymond Bonham Carter and a French-Spanish mother named Elena Propper de Callejon. Helena’s maternal grandfather, Spanish diplomat Eduardo Propper de Callejón, saved thousands of Jews from the Holocaust during World War II, for which he was recognized as Righteous among the Nations. He also served as Minister-Counselor at the Spanish Embassy in Washington, D.C. Talk about having a place in Spanish history!


Joan Smalls (22)

One of the newest faces of Estée Lauder is model Joan Smalls, who hails from the Puerto Rican town of Hatillo and rose to fame when she was chosen to walk exclusively for Givenchy’s Fall 2010 couture show in Paris.  Estée Lauder Global Brand President Jane Hertzmark Hudis said, “She truly reflects Estée Lauder’s modern vision of global beauty.”


Kelis, 30:
Harlem native Kelis Jones’ biggest hit was “Milkshake” and that sort of describes her ethnic background, as well. Her father, Kenneth, is African-American and her mother, Eveliss, is Puerto Rican and Chinese. The Boricua side was especially palpable during the holidays when her family celebrated “Noche Buena”: “[We had] pernil and we always had coquito,” the singer once told Rap-Up.com.


Gina Ravera45

On seasons 1-4 of TNT’s hit show, The Closer (2005-2009), Gina Ravera played Irene Daniels—a detective at the LAPD Priority Homicide Department. The actress is also well known for her role as Dr. Bettina DeJesus on the long-running medical drama, ER. She’s half-African American and half-Puerto Rican on her father’s side.

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Noomi Rapace, 31

Many know actress Noomi Rapace from her breakout role as Lisbeth Salander in the Swedish/Danish film, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009), but few know that Noomi—whose mother Nina Norén is Swedish—has a Spanish father, a Flamenco singer named Rogelio Durán.


Nicole Gale Anderson, 20

Though you probably wouldn’t know it by looking at her, Nicole — who is known for her roles as Macy Misa on the Disney series, Jonas L.A., (2009-2010) and as Kelly Parker on ABC Family’s Make It or Break It (2009-2011) — is a mix of several ethnic backgrounds including Swedish on her father’s side and Filipino and Spanish on her mother’s side.  


Reagan Gomez-Preston, 30

Though she’s the daughter of an African American father, Reagan Gomez-Preston is part-Latina (her mother Cheryl Gomez is Puerto Rican). From her first role as Zarla Peterson on The Parent ‘Hood, to her roles on shows One on One and the UPN sitcom, Love Inc, Gomez-Preston always plays African American characters. She is currently starring as Roberta Tubbs, an African American, on FOX’s animated Family Guy spinoff, The Cleveland Show.


Joanne “Jo” Frost, 39

We know what you’re thinking: TV’s British Supernanny, the lady with the thick British accent, is Latina? – no way! But in fact, Joanne “Jo” Frost is the daughter of an English father and a Gibraltar-born mother.


Rachel Ticotin, 52

While a lot of people know that Rachel Ticotin kicked Sharon Stone in the stomach during their brutal fight scene in the sci-fi blockbuster Total Recall (1990), not everyone knows that Ticotin is Hispanic. Ticotin’s father, Abe Ticotin is a Russian Jewish used car salesman, but her mother, Iris Torres is a Puerto Rican educator.



Melissa DeSousa, 43

Melissa DeSousa is best known for her role as Shelby, the manipulative, calculating and needy girlfriend of Harold Perrineau’s character Julian Murch in The Best Man (1999) — a movie that featured an all-Black cast. But DeSousa — who is also known for her role as outspoken Latina Lesbian Karen Krantz (“Miss New York”) in the Sandra Bullock comedy, Miss Congeniality (2000)— is an Afro-Latina of Panamanian descent. "Most people do know that I am Latina at this point," DeSousa tells Latina.com. "However, they usually ask the same questions: Are you Dominican? (Thinking most Dominicans are dark skinned), or because I'm from New York I must be Puerto Rican. Or they will ask 'are both of your parents Latino? What are you mixed with? Not realizing Latinos are all different complexions," she said. 




Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, 21: Nicole (better known as “Snooki”) may star as an Italian guidette on MTV’s hottest reality show, The Jersey Shore, but the reality is that Nicole is actually of Chilean descent. She was adopted and raised by Italian parents. That makes us wonder if people from Chile are big on GTL?


Sarah Ramos, 19

Sarah is of Hispanic and Jewish descent, but you’d never know it by watching her play all-American girl Haddie Braverman on NBC’s Parenthood.


Raquel Welch, 70

International sex symbol and golden globe winning actress, Raquel Welch was born Jo Raquel Tejada. While her mother Josephine Sarah came from English ancestry, her father Armando Carlos Tejada Urquizo is of Bolivian and Spanish descent.


Sabrina Bryan, 26

Most people know that Adrienne Bailon of The Cheetah Girls is Latina, but with a last name like Bryan, not everyone knows that her fellow cheetah Sabrina is also Latina. Born Reba Sabrina Hinojos, Sabrina’s father is Mexican and her mother is Caucasian. Maybe they should have been called “Las Chicas Cheetah” instead?


Helena Christensen, 42

Supermodel Helena Christensen was born in Denmark to a Danish father and a Peruvian mother. In 2009, she traveled to her mother’s homeland for an exhibition on climate change and completed a photo series called “Portraits of Peru,” where she learned about the country’s problems—both economic and environmental. “Throughout my childhood we made trips to Peru, but it wasn't until I returned about three years ago that I felt a sense of belonging,” Helena has said. “I'm grateful that by taking photographs of what I see I have the opportunity to raise a tiny bit of awareness about what is happening.”


Daniella Monet, 22

Best known for playing Katrina “Trina” Vega in the Nickelodeon sitcom, Victorious, most people don’t believe that Daniella Monet is half-Chilean.


Sara Shahi, 31

We asked Fairly Legal star Sara Shahi (born Aahoo Jahansouz Shahi) if people peg her as Latina when they meet her and here’s what she dished: “I get everything – I’ve gotten everything from Latin to Italian to Polynesian,” said Shahi, whose mom is part Spanish and dad is Iranian. Fun fact: Sarah also played Mexican-American DJ Carmen de la Pica Morales on the second season of Showtime's hit series, The L Word (2004).


Aubrey Plaza, 25: She plays Amy Poehler's slothful college intern, April, on NBC’s hit comedy, Parks and Recreation; but people have a hard time believing that this talented and irreverent comedienne is Latina. “I was like the only diverse kid in my high school, and I'm half-Puerto Rican,” Plaza told Latina.com. “I have a huge family and tons of cousins in Puerto Rico. We actually hung out with them last summer, and it was awesome.”


Courtney Ford, 32

Courtney Ford never plays Latina characters, but that doesn’t make her any less Latin or any less proud of her Hispanic roots: “On my mom’s side, my grandparents were born in New Mexico and their parents were born in New Mexico and their parents were born in New Mexico,” Ford explained to us. “And I think New Mexico was admitted into the Union in 1912. My great grandparents were born in 1916. So their parents were born in New Mexico before New Mexico was even part of the United States. Isn’t that crazy?”



Lynda Carter, 59

The Marvel character Wonder Woman isn’t Latina, but Lynda Carter, the woman who first portrayed her on the 1970 TV series The New Adventures of Wonder Woman, is. Carter’s father is of Irish American descent while her mother Juana Cordova is of Mexican heritage.


Lea Michelle , 23: This Broadway alum (Spring Awakening) is the sultry and talented beauty who inspired this gallery. Lea, who’s part Italian-American and part Spanish-Sephardic Jewish, has a voice that is a gift from God. We’re proud that this talented performer is part-Latina, and we can only hope that Lea belts out a song in Spanish on FOX’s Glee in the near future.


Nicole Richie, 28: Socialite, reality star and sometimes actress, Nicole Richie is known as Lionel Richie’s adopted daughter—the key word there being, “adopted.” Richie was actually born Nicole Camille Escovedo to a Mexican mother.


Alana de la Garza, 33: Alana may have the fair skin and complexion of someone like Ashley Judd or Winona Ryder, but make no mistake: This beautiful actress—who plays A.D.A Connie Rubirosa on NBC’s Law & Order, is part-Mexican.


Marisol Nichols, 36: Who knew Chevy Chase had a Latina daughter? Marisol Nichols, who is best known for her role as Chevy's daughter Audrey Griswold in the popular comedy Vegas Vacation (1997), may look like a young Demi Moore, but the beautiful actress is also part Mexican.


Odette Yustman, 25: Although her first role was a Latin one—at the age of four she played the minor role of Spanish student Rosa in Kindergarten Cop (1990)—few know that Odette Yustman, with those girl-next-door looks, is Latin. But the former star of the ABC drama October Road and the big screen horror flick, The Unborn, is half Cuban. “I learned Spanish at home and, since half my family didn’t speak English, it’s my first language,” says Yustman.


Alanna Ubach, 34: Alanna is known for portraying funny white women in movies and television. On HBO's hit comedy, Hung, she plays a fabulous cougar named Yael Koontz, but did you know that Alanna is 100% Latina? She's half-Mexican and half-Puerto Rican! True story: The producers of the Ben Stiller comedy Meet the Fockers (2004) put fat cushions and grey hair on Alanna so she could play the role of 40-year-old Cuban maid named Isabel Villalobos.


Shar Jackson, 33: You might remember Shar from her role as Niecy Jackson, Brandi’s best friend on the UPN show, Moesha. But chances are you probably know her best as the girl who had all that baby-mama drama with Kevin Federline and Britney Spears. Either way, did you know that Shar is also Puerto Rican and Mexican on her father’s side?


Victoria Justice, 17:  Victoria, who is of Puerto Rican descent on her mother’s side, represents for Latinas everywhere as the character Tori Vega, a young Latina who struggles to find her place at an elite Hollywod performing arts high school on Victorious.


Joanna Garcia, 30: You know her as Cheyenne Hart-Montgomery, a white cheerleader on Reba, and as Megan Smith, a white journalist on the CW’s Privileged, but did you know that this beautiful actress is Cuban? Born in Tampa, Florida to a Spanish-American mother and a Cuban father, last year Joanna became the first Latina to land a recurring role on Gossip Girl, and she had this to say about getting the role: “I'm always proud to be Latin anywhere I go, but the fact that I'm breaking a little ground here makes me very excited!” You go, girl!


Charisma Carpenter, 42

She's best known for playing Cordelia Chase—a conceited and popular teenager who reluctantly joins “The Scooby Gang” in Whedon’s hit TV series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. But we’re betting you didn’t know that this talented beauty—who also starred on Whedon's Buffy spinoff, Angel—is Latina! Charisma’s dad might be French and German, but her mom is a mix of Cherokee and Spanish. The actress lived in Rosarito City, Mexico during her teen years.