Juchitán de Zaragoza is a small indigenous town located in southern Oaxaca, a community of individuals known as muxe. The name "muxe," pronounced “mu-shay” derives from the ancient Zapotec dialect to describe a community of gay men who date heterosexual men while dressing as women. Often they are considered the third gender. Traditionally seen as a blessing for a family because they will be the one to take care of their parents as they grow older, however, doesn't mean they don't deal with rejection and limited career prospects. They are considered to be creative and are expected to work in the same roles as a stereotypical women.
Estrella Vazquez born as a man but considers herself a woman is a weaver and designer in her late 30's. She became the first transgender muxe to appear on the cover of Vogue, the British and Mexican editions in December of 2019. She had never heard of the magazine until she was approached by them. Vasquez who is from Oaxaca lives with her mother.
Estrella Vasquez a weaver and designer is the first transgender muxe woman to appear on the cover of Vogue in December of 2019, looks for an outfit while her mother checks in on her in their home in Juchitán de Zaragoza an indigenous town in the southeast of the Mexican state of Oaxaca.
Estrella’s make-up displayed on the table before she get ready.
Estrella looks in the mirror after she applies make-up in her home.
Estrella’s mom helps her get ready. Estrella was born a man but prefers to be identified as a woman.
Estrella looks in the mirror to check her make-up while an alter of the Virgin Mary can be seen behind her.
Maria de Jesus Guerra the mother of Estrella waits for her to get ready while sitting in their kitchen. Many muxe have been known to care for their ageing parents, some even say it’s a blessing to have a muxe son so they can help out at home.
Estrella can be seeing applying eye shadow.
Estrella poses for a photo wearing a traditional huipil garment with colorful flowers.