Samantha Leal Senior Editor

Samantha Leal is the Senior Editor for, where she edits and oversees the site's content with a focus on fashion, beauty and lifestyle.

She grew up in South Bend, Indiana (go Notre Dame!) and graduated from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University before setting out for New York City. Her work has been published by,, and more.

When she’s not working, you’ll find her reading (YA novels, mostly), watching too many YouTube videos and writing short stories. You can follow her on Twitter at @samanthajoleal and read her style and music blog at

Favorite Latina fashionista: Nicole Richie

The Latino celeb I'd want to be best friends with: Selena Gomez

My first celebrity crush: Mike Vitar aka Benny ‘The Jet’ Rodriguez from the movie The Sandlot.

Something people don't know about me: I have a phobia of needles and blood.

Guilty pop culture addiction: Anything on The CW.

My Latina Role Model: Salma Hayek

Fun Memory from My First Day at Latina: My first day was a blur!

Two words that describe Elvis Crespo: Very interesting…

If I met Jennifer Lopez, I would: be a total fangirl. I've loved her since she was a fly girl on 'In Living Color'

Latino artist on my iPod right now: Pitbull

Favorite Interview with a Latino Celeb: Daddy Yankee or Adriana Lima

Favorite Latin dish: Mexican chorizo tacos

Favorite Spanish-Language Song: Como La Flor - Selena Quintanilla

Proudest Moment as a Latino: When the Wise Latina herself, Sonia Sotomayor, was named to the Supreme Court.

12 Problems That Latinos Who Don’t Speak Spanish Have
12 Problems All Latinos Who Don't Speak Spanish Will Understand

“Yes, I am Latina. No, no habla español.” Sound familiar? Here, some of the biggest problems Latinos face when they admit they don’t speak Spanish. 

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Marc Anthony launches his Signature Collection at Kohl's
Why Marc Anthony Appreciates That His Father Told Him "You're Ugly"

Quite the revelation. Marc Anthony's father pulled no punches growing up, apparently telling the star as a young boy that his personality would be his saving grace -- not his looks.

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The Census Can't Fit Latinos Into a Race Box — And It's Causing Problems
The Census Can't Fit Latinos Into a Race Box — And It's Causing Problems

A new study has shown a shift of Latinos identifying as "some other race," to "white." But according to Huffington Post writer Roque Planas, it's not quite as simple as attesting it to a matter of assimilation. It's really a matter of misunderstanding by non-Latino researchers, writers and a faulty Census classifying system.

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Gisele Bundchen at the Met Ball
Gisele Bundchen is the New Face of Chanel No. 5!

A supermodel and an iconic fragrance go together like peanut butter and jelly. So it's not a surprise that Gisele Bundchen has been named the new face of Chanel No. 5. The supermodel is taking over for Brad Pitt, reports People StyleWatch

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Adriana Castro
Style Expert & Fashion Designer Adriana Castro Talks Dressing Celebrities, Fragrance & More!

Colombiana Designer Adriana Castro's exotic skin handbags have been seen on celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, the Kardashians, Shakira and Eva Longoria. But she's becoming a style star in her own right, launching, where she offers expert advice to women to creat and look fabulous. So it's no wonder Caress Body Wash has chosen her as a new Fabulista, joining the likes of Kelly Rowland to help spread her love of the product and of style.

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Salma Hayek at Cannes
The 12 Best Dressed Latinas of the Week!

From the Cannes Film Festival to L.A. movie premieres, our stars were looking gorgeous this week! Take a look at the best dressed:

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Rubio Won't Say Whether He's Smoked Pot Or Not
Rubio Won't Say Whether He's Smoked Pot Or Not

Florida Senator Marco Rubio is strongly against legalizing marijuana. But don't even ask him whether he's ever smoked pot before. 

“If you say that you did, then suddenly there are people out there saying, ‘Well, it's not a big deal,’” the 43-year-old Republican told ABC’s Politics Confidential. “On the other side of it is if you tell people that you didn't, they won't believe you." 

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Amazing: 8-Year-Old Girl Helps Deliver Baby Brother!
Amazing: 8-Year-Old Girl Helps Deliver Baby Brother!

A special delivery, indeed! An 8-year-old girl helped her mother deliver her baby brother, after the mom went into labor at their home. The Tampa, Florida family found themselves in a crisis after mother Krystie Garcia had her daughter, Jazmine McEnaney, call 911 to send paramedics to their home after going into labor. The baby, however, didn't want to wait -- and tiny Jazmine had to help her mother through giving birth. 

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Alessandra Ambrosio on Self magazine
Alessandra Ambrosio: "Having a Perfect Body Isn't Everything"

Alessandra Ambrosio has a near perfect body (pretty much a Victoria's Secret model requirement), but that's not what's most important to her. 

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Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden
Are Cameron Diaz & Benji Madden Dating?

Looks like Cameron Diaz has a new man in her life! Originally reported by X17, singer Benji Madden, of the band Good Charlotte, and the actress are apparently a new item. A source told Us Weekly that it's "very new" and they're "just hanging out." 

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