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Major cosmetics company courts Latinas

San Antonian Diana Rodriguez Ruthben is in a makeup conundrum. She loves wearing colorful eye shadow but also craves the smoky-eye look. And then there are her lips. When should she wear a vibrant red - a favorite - instead of the spicy coral that has become her go-to lipstick?

As the newlywed sits in a chair at Dillard's North Star Mall, Rodolfo Arciga and Honorina Sartena, top makeup artists for Estée Lauder, hover over the former nurse's aide.

They dab on foundation, brush on blush and contour her cheeks with bronzer. Her eyelids are swathed in a bold blue-and-gray blend for a colorful, sexy look. On the lips, a neutral gloss. Eyebrows have been enhanced with waterproof mascara - the same mascara used to lengthen her eyelashes, which was wiped off a wand and brushed through the brows, adding thickness and definition.

Looking into a mirror, she exclaims, "I think it's fantastic. I normally would go to a drugstore and pick out whatever's on sale, whatever I find."

Arciga, who is based in Mexico City, was on a Texas tour last week, checking in with Latinas in San Antonio, Laredo and McAllen, exploring Latina makeup concerns and special needs, from oily skin to over-tweezed eyebrows. "Being from Mexico, I understand the Latin culture and its women," he said.

This is the first time that the makeup giant has reached out to the Latina customer with its "Fiesta de Color y Belleza" or "Ultimate Beauty Party." On hand were bilingual makeup artists, signage in English and Spanish, even a play area for children.

The company has also hired its first Latina spokesmodel, Joan Smalls of Puerto Rico. READ MORE

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