GIRLS IN BED ON THE INTERNET PART II: NOMI RUIZ, JILLIAN MERCADO & ZURI MARLEY

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It’s the year 2020: we all expected technology would be prevalent in our lives. But we could not have known the desperation with which we would cling to it as we traveled through a year of global trauma and isolation. The internet has become a nation of its own, and almost everyone has dual citizenship.

Ladygunn decided to catch up with a few baddie civilians who conquer the metropolis of fashion, music, and pillow talk. Today, we take an exclusive look inside the new daily lives of Nomi Ruiz, Jillian Mercado, and Zuri Marley. 

This is a story of beauty au natural, glamour team not included, as industries continue to adapt to challenges and changes brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Virtually styled by Phil Gomez and shot via FaceTime by Art Evaristo, beloved brand Baby Phat came on board to help build this sense of community from afar. Featuring some of our favorite Essentials!

NOMI RUIZ

Nomi Ruiz is the renaissance woman who makes music best suited for steamy sex in cars. A musician, poet, and actress, Nomi recently premiered her single ‘Cocaino’ on Billboard. She’s also a celebrated essayist, touring blogs around the internet with her thoughts on the transgender experience.

P: Tell me what are you missing the most right now?

N: I miss going to a bar and getting drunk with my best friend and eating disgusting food. I miss dancing – that used to be like my only workout. I used to go out dancing till I was sweating! So now I have to be conscious and make sure that I’m moving my body or  working out at home. I miss the subway! I used to love whizzing around the city and going all over the place and now it doesn’t feel so safe. 

P: So what are some ways that you are supplementing the social interaction part of your life? 

N: I’m very thankful that I have my radio show that now has become a public access TV show! We have really cool guests, we just had Rose McGowan.

P: Oh how fun!

N: It’s been really fun, It’s keeping me feeling a bit more connected. I have been going to some zoom parties…which is fun because it gives me a reason to dress up. I love having a reason to dress up, especially now that it’s so easy to just sit around in your pajamas and not put on makeup.

P: What zoom party did you last go to?

N: Susan Bartsch! It’s nice to also see all the club kids and their creativity and where they live. 

P: Any words of advice? 

N: I feel this is a good time to empathize with other people, because we are all going through the same thing. How can we use this to change our perspective of humanity when we go back to normal?

 

JILLIAN MERCADO

Model and activist Jillian Mercado recently debuted her acting career as a prime character on the L Word’s new season, Generation Q. She also appeared on her first NYFW runway this past season and is one of the few if not the first professional models in the fashion industry with a physical disability. If that wasn’t enough for this gracefully sexy star, Beyonce personally casted Jillian as a lead in her ‘Formation’ merchandise campaign. 

P: How has your social life shifted since the quarantine?

J: Well it’s been really hard. I think the interesting part is we are literally all going through the same thing at the same time; well, except the 1%. They’re living their best life. But it’s not my demographic or my community so I don’t care about them *laughs*. I think that if anything as far as the creatives go, we’re all going through a weird transition of “OK, how can we creatively fulfill part of our world?” If anything, it’s affected me mentally because of the uncertainty of it all is scary. We don’t know how long this is going to last, we don’t know what the industry is going to be like because it literally changed. It’s never going to go back to normal ever again and that took me a second to actually swallow and realize it. BC / AC: Before Corona / After Corona.

P: HAHA so true! So what can you suggest for escapism?

J: Its going to sound cheesy but mediating has been so fucking helpful for me. And also comedy shows.

P: What was the last really funny comedy show you watched?

J: My roommate knows so many comics from the 90’s, so we’ve been watching a lot of 90’s stand up comedy, like Monique’s era.

P: What would you say to someone that is feeling alone?

J: I think if anything being alone is something we all have, but we are alone together , we are not alone alone. We have the privilege of social media. So I would advise them that they need to get that out of their minds – period! There’s a lot of communities online that people can be a part of and not feel so secluded and that’s helped me for sure! 

 

ZURI MARLEY 

She’s a musician, a DJ, actress and beauty aficionado: Zuri is one uplifting resident we truly admire. Daughter of Ziggy Marley and granddaughter of the infamous Bob, Zuri has a musical taste all her own, having collaborated with artists like Dev Hynes, Nelly Furtado, Nosaj Thing and more. 

P: How have you been surviving the pandemic?

Z: I’ve been surviving by literally just taking care of myself, which has been the most important thing. Obviously everyone is doing what they need to do to help fight to stop this virus. So I have been making sure I have a strong immune system, and in turn it’s actually been helping me in all aspects of my life. I have been writing!  I’ve been dancing so much! Dancing  is literally my lifeline right now.

P: What have you been dancing to? 

Z: I’ve been dancing to… ‘Touch It’  by Busta Rhymes the remix! Sometimes I just put on a playlist and dance to it for mad long . I’ve been cooking a lot too and like exploring different vegan stuff.

P: What’s your favorite meal you’ve made?

Z: Last week I made Butternut squash soup which I’ve never tried before and it was so easy. I was shocked! I was just like “holy shit like I can make that”! I think quarantine has given me the moment I needed to go for everything I want. I can’t go outside but I can go inside of myself. Being able to focus on me, no distractions! Being quarantined lets you do that without feeling bad about it.

P: I love that being quarantined has given you a fire to work on yourself – are there any tips that you can give to people?

Z: My tip would be if you can create, create! I struggle with that even now, it’s hard for me to just create sometimes because you hear all the voices in your head. You’re probably more capable of doing things then you think you are. Like cooking, for example! There’s so many things we have to do for survival, so lean on those things….like you have to eat, so make that something that helps you create. But I would say create in any way that you can and hopefully that helps. 

There are [also] a plethora of movies, magazines, books; there’s just so much out there that go beyond what you see on Instagram and scrolling. I know Instagram causes a lot of people anxiety, so there’s so much beyond that you can look to and you just never know when you’re gonna find that inspiration. Just never stop searching and you’ll be good. And don’t read the news all day every day! 

CONNECT WITH NOMI RUIZ 

INSTAGRAM // TWITTER

CONNECT WITH JILLIAN MERCADO

INSTAGRAM // TWITTER

CONNECT WITH ZURI MARLEY

INSTAGRAM // TWITTER

CONNECTS WITH BABY PHAT 

FACEBOOK // TWITTER //  INSTAGRAM

TEAM CREDITS 

Photography: Art Evaristo @artcrooks

Creative Direction + styling: Phil Gomez @styledbyphil

Story: Ari Tibi @aritibi 

In Conversation with Phil Gomez

STYLING CREDITS 

Clothing, BABY PHAT / @babyphat. Lingerie, SAVAGE FENTY / @savagexfenty. Jewelry, LARUICCI @laruicci.

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