"Ay mira, she's just like Snow White!"

"Her dark hair and that fair skin! Looks like she has a Halloween costume all set when she's older!"

Please, I am not Snow White. Frankly, I never, ever want to be her.

Have Your Voice Heard: Become an Odyssey Creator

I was plagued with this my entire life. I was ALWAYS Snow White. My rosy baby face and dark black hair against my napkin-white skin made every Spanish relative I had call me "Blanca Nieve".

No. Por el amor de dios, no.

Snow White was nothing, absolutely pointless. She never had an original thought the entire movie, she could barely fend for herself when tripping and skirting through the forest, and married the first guy who kissed her awake. How in the world is that true love's kiss if the audience and you don't even know his name? (I mean, he is known officially as The Prince... seriously look it up.)

The princess I act the most like, and arguably with Emma Watson's rendition my favorite, is Belle. I'm a huge book worm, like her, and I'm constantly searching for the good in people, even if it is hard to find at first.

As I got older, I loved Rapunzel's sense of adventure, Anna and Elsa's sisterly love that can thaw a frozen heart, Tiana's drive to succeed and fulfill her dream, and Merida's "I don't need a man in my life" attitude. The Renaissance and New Age Princesses were much more my style and princesses I would be proud to tell my daughter to admire.

By high school I had made a pact. I would no longer be cute baby face Snow White (my face has not changed in nineteen years... serious lack of glow up). Everyone around me was changing, growing up, arguably getting hotter and more adult-y. I needed some sort of change to make the people around me finally realize that I was not a little girl anymore, despite what my cheeks may tell you. I wanted to grow up.

Going into senior year, I decided to change my hair color. Yeah, I know, it's not really a big deal, but to me it was. Although I loved Belle, black to brown wasn't that big of a change. I personally wanted purple, but my Cuban mother almost had a heart attack when I mentioned it.

We came to a compromise.

Red.

Ariel red.

Another absolutely amazing princess with a rebellious attitude and need for adventure.

Deep down, the hair change was also a promise to myself to not be a Snow White. I didn't want to be some girl on a bed of flowers waiting for a prince to come and kiss me and take me to his castle. I wanted to be fearless. I wanted to have the confidence to know that a man would one day see me in all that I am, all of my quirks and weirdness, and love every part of me.

My red hair is my confidence booster. Sure, it may just call for attention, but I always felt overlooked with my natural hair color. My friends and classmates in my senior year of high school took me seriously. They trusted me with writing scenes for our final projects. It helped me get the confidence I needed to nail my audition for a play. It helped me feel beautiful on prom night, without a date, when that morning was an absolute nightmare.

It's connects me to my amazing college crew and continues to make me smile and laugh louder everyday. I experiment with my makeup and clothes more. I'm not afraid to ask out a cute guy.

Snow White me and Ariel me are two completely different people, and the change is what I needed to help me get to where I am today. It's just hair. It grows out. Red fades out fast. But when it's red velvet cupcake red, I feel like I can rule the world.