How Latinas Are Influencing the Fashion Retail Industry

STAMFORD, CT -- Hispanic shoppers like Maria Creamer are a retailer’s dream. She goes to the mall at least once a week to either window shop or buy clothes. “We like to shop a lot, and always look good,” said the 51-year -old Puerto Rican with a laugh as she winds her way through a department store in downtown Stamford, Connecticut.

Latina women are fast becoming the new majority consumer, and the purchasing power they wield is making retail companies sit up and take notice.

“I don’t care if it is from Walmart or Lord and Taylor, if I like it, I’ll buy it,” said Gembley Lucero, a 33-year-old mom. It does not surprise her to learn that Latinas are spending more than their non-Latina counterparts.

Sally Hernandez, a native of Santo Domingo, has worked in the fashion arena in New York City for six years. Like many Latinas, she remembers the women in her family's attention to appearance.

Sally Hernandez poses for a portrait at Skye's the Limit, a line of American sportswear sold to boutiques and department stores across the country on Wednesday, June 10th, 2015 in New York City.Michael Rubenstein / for NBC News

"No matter what our budget was, we found a way to look good - it stays ingrained in you, making sure that you always look polished. When you see your Mom putting herself together, it makes you put yourself together like that," said Hernandez, an account executive at Skye’s the Limit, a clothing line that is sold in U.S. department stores and boutiques and other regions such as Latin America.

Hernandez feels that the industry has evolved to appeal more to Hispanics.

“I do think it is something that has been taken into consideration. It affects how things are designed in general," said Hernandez, “There are so many brands out there that have been starting to ask, how do we gear ourselves toward the Latina woman?” she adds.

A Fast-Growing Consumer Market

Hispanic women will comprise about 30 percent of the total female population by 2060, according to a recent Nielsen report, Latina Power Shift.


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