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The stunning 29-year-old transgender is now a burlesque star, a reality TV personality, an actress, and an Elite model. Carmen Carrera takes great pride in being a Woman, a Mom, and a Wife too. Her Beauty Has No Genderextended to pose for STEVEN MEISEL in W Magazine Fall 2013, to shoot for Glamour UK (Spring 2014) and to muse to DAVID LACHAPELLE Life Ball 2014. What matters is who you choose to be.

Photography Alex Evans
Fashion Editor
Salem Remix
By Alessandro Berga |


It all started at clubs in New Jersey as a drag performer because entertaining is her bent. Carmen Carrera is now living her transition after she underwent her sex change between the ages of 26 and 29 and says people were surprisingly open-minded about it.

Still people were less open minded about her truth stands in addressing social transgender etiquette and equality issues, which she still has much to advocate. As a public figure with a strong opinion, she is determined not to let her cuteness takeover.

We met in the lounge of the W Hotel Montreal. Words. Worlds. Wits. Wills.

When neophytes think of burlesque, they see Dita Von Teese, stripteasing in a giant cocktail glass of Cointreau. Is that fair To see her in a glass of Cointreau brings together all the burlesque codes without falling into the vulgar. Simple choreography, dazzling costumes, immaculate make up, seducing attitudes, all in sublime scenery! I love Dita!

Why is burlesque so important to you?  Before becoming a girl when I was a boy, I was a girl at heart! Since childhood, I grew up in the middle of old lace, feathers and jewels. Antiques, ancient monuments like the Pyramids of Egypt, Cabaret, fascinate me. Burlesque is a place of acceptance, love and hope for anyone, not only the LGBT community that I represent as a transgender artist. When I’m on stage I forget everything, I’m revealing not undressing me, because the purpose of such shows is entertainment. I am a born a performer.


How do you manage to mix your modeling with your burlesque and acting gigs?  Steven Meisel saw one my shows. He approached me for a shooting with W Magazine with Edward Enninful. It was quite an endorsement to walk the catwalk! For the moment, I work as a third-time actress, a third-time TV host and a third-time Burlesque performer with The Heathers. Now I am between NY and LA but I am moving to Chicago soon. In LA, I love working on the set of Jane the Virgin premieres in October 13 on the CW Network, check me out! I play a cocktail waitress! I spend all my energy to my shows, and to acting. Plus I travel around the world with my fabulous queens sistas Delta Work, Manila Luzon and Raja. As RuPaul’s Drag Race contestants, we became close friends because of our common passions for drag, beauty, talent, and determination. So modeling is kinda in between! I do a lot of photo shoots. I would love to model for Olivier (Rousteing, of Balmain) of course! And Lanvin! Mr Elbaz graced me with a beautiful dress. Being a performer serves me well to act the clothes, to perform them rather than be a portmanteau. I loved our shooting together in creating new looks of a dark and mystical powerful femme. It’s a great way to introduce myself! In the future, I may find the most pleasure in Transgender lingerie design. Because this is a time where we can be completely ourselves!

Can we live la Vie Burlesque? What dress code should be follow? What music feed into it?  Of course, we can live in «Burlesque « without seeming so far disguise. Dress in a very simple and comfortable outfit; for example: a small pencil skirt with a blouse, heels, a nice vintage retro hairstyle and all is good! As for the music, it all depends on the style you like: 50’s pin up will listen to rock ‘and roll, for fans of the previous years, jazz is required. But being retro is also in the head, you might as well listen to disco or Maria Callas!

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Photography Alex Evans.
Fashion Editor Salem Remix.
Makeup and Hair Vanessa Jarman at P1M.
Model Carmen Carrera at Elite New York.
Fashion editor assistant Jordan Zebedee.


About The Author

César Ochoa
Art Director

Cesar Ochoa has a Graphic Design Bachelor’s Degree from University La Salle in Mexico City where he finds a fascination for fashion magazines. He moved to Canada in 2006 and soon he started collaborating for some magazines in Toronto and Montreal as photographer and graphic designer. Huge fan of Dress to kill he started working for the magazine for four years now as art director.

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