I met Diego Alfaro a few years ago, when we both were #TalentoEMTI and he was about to host Zona Trendy on E!. Diego is even more famous ever since: he’s vj’ed for MTV and Canal 5, has posed with praying hands in every billboard all over Mexico City for Elle Mexico Diseña and he now hosts, alongside Jiots, “La Una” on Radio Fórmula. Diego talked to Alice Gamus about his style, tattoos and his obsession for sneakers.
What do you think personal style is?
I feel tha, in my case, style is about taking risks, steping out of the monotone, identifying with something. For example, I like hawaiian t-shirts and I’m taking advantage that not everyone looks good in them. Finding something you look better in than others and, above all, not dressing the same all the time. I feel that happens a lot in Mexico: when it comes to men, some trend happens and everyone dresses the same. I began styling myself from my tattoos, to taking care of myself, keeping my look, my hair, my beard. Taking advantage of everything you can wear to give yourself different styles: glasses, sunglasses, tattoos, necklaces, rings. I feel that’s style.
Exactly! You achieve an indicidual style through tattoos…
Yes, it is something that identifies you. People see you and they know you’re the guy with the tattoos and I’ve worked on that since I began doing it. For me it is “go big or go home”, I was not only get one tattoo. I started with a really big one, I didn’t care. So I was like “this is it” and a saw this niche that Mexico doesn’t really have. I got my fisrt tattoo in L.A. it was because I saw everyone there has a lot of tattoos.The key momento was when I saw this family: this dude, his wife and their son and they were all fully tattooed.
I always liked tattoos since I was a kid, but I’ve never had any oiercings, though. If you paint and decorate your home and Paint the walls, you can do it with your body. It is your home. There’s this taboo about them being forever, but you dont really know if you’re gonna die tomorrow, so whatever. I rather have them and and own that I can rock them now. It’ll come the time when I’ll be all wrinkled and old and they won’t look good, but I wanted them to be my distinctive thing.
Tattoos can be part of a subculture and speaking of subcultures, how do you feel about fashion’s inspiration from streetwear and how very different brands have taken that or used urban brands for colaborations?
I think Supreme’s colaboration with Louis Vuitton was bs. Supreme is a skate brand and, in this case, they start doing luxury and movin towards different audiences and it shows. It doesn’t matter how popular a TRASHER shirt gets, if you see Kylie Jenner wearing it you still go “aaaghhhh” the other day I was wearing a hockey jersey (I have no clue about hockey) and this dude came up to me and asked me who was my favorite player and I had to tell him I bought the thing in New York just because I liked how it looked on me. I understand I look costumy sometimes and it’s cool, I have no problema with that. It happens a lot with tattoos too, there’s something trending and you see a lot of people getting them. I have tattoos I know a guy with a trisngle with arrows wouln’t dare to get.
The other day my tattoo artista texted me and showed me this guy that had copied five of my tattoos. It felt weird because it was cool I inspired this guy to do it, but at the same time I thought “be original”. I got angry for him, not for me. I mean, mine are not so original but I try to give them my touch and I work on that with my tattoo artist.
Every tattoo you have has a meaning or is it just aesthetics?
It comes a momento when you like an image and you get it done, but yeah, everyone has some symbolism to it, more than a story.
Tell me about your jersey collection. I see you have plenty of them.
I always was a big NBA fan. I have one og Vincent Carter that is a classic. He was one of the reasons I played basketball when I was a kid. Now I’m more into hockey jerseys. I love logos. Football ones, I din’t like that much, but the classics. Hockey ones you can style better with oversized looks.
Have you ever been a fashion victim?
As a teen, yeah. I was into Lacoste. I remember this friend that went to Argentina and I asked him to get me some Lacoste shirts there because they were cheaper and I think I wore them once. It was a time when I was choosing between a Lacoste polo or a Led Zeppelin shirt and I was like “fuck it”, I’m not a Lacoste guy. That’s when I began growing my own identity.
You were telling me you no longer want to be identified for your glasses, why’s that?
It’s cool people know you for that, but you don’t have to wear them always. There was a point where I had to wear my glasses to go to the store down the street. I’m not gonna stop wearing them, but I want it to be special whenever I wear them. I feel there are some looks that don’t go well with glasses, like hockey jerseys, so I do it for my style, I rather make it more ecclectic.
If you had to choose a city only for the style of its people, what would be the ideal city?
I think Buenos Aires. I went a long time ago and everyone looked very hipstery. I’d tell them “dude, you’re such a hípster” and they wouldn’t get it. They were in their own thing. They have a very strong national culture, most of the brands they use are national. They’re very real, not like the posh kid from here or NYC, that wears a Ramones shirt. Specially in Palermo SoHo and Palermo Hollywood, you could tell women barely thought of their clothes and they looked very, very cool.
What’s something you’d never wear?
White jeans. Obviously Crocs.
Speaking of sneaker fever, how many pairs you own?
Up to 80/90. There’s a couple I only wear for special ocassions, there’s other I spray with stuff for leather and stuff. I also wear Air Force Ones for the everyday life, so they look worn out and they’re not that expensive.
Tell us about your jewelry, specially your vagina-shaped ring.
My vagina ring has a funny story: I just went to Barcelona and my friend’s boyfriend has a jewelry shop nearby, so we went. I saw the classic skull ones and then I saw this one. He told me it was the store’s classic, that it was a vagina and it says “Eat More Pussy”. I liked it ‘cause it’s original and the skull one you can find wherever. The other ones I have, I like to wear mexican jewelry, I have some from Driguez and I work a lot with a friend that owns La Santa Joyería. Even though I try to support mexican brands, it’s difficult, ‘cause there are few that do stuff for men, but everytime there’s more men that have an interest for this.
Do you remember something you bought that changed you in some way?
I remember the first pair of tennis shoes I bought with my own money, at Shelter. It was a pair of Dunks with weird neon colors. Also my firts leather jacket and my first pair of skinny jeans.
In what store you could live?
Nike, mostly because of the shoes. I’m gonna sound like a cliché, but Urban Outfitters. I always hope there’s one everywhere I go. Its a must-go stop. If I had the money, I’d be dressed in Rick Owens all the time.
What’s what you most like about your body and what’s the thing you like the least?
The least. Defenitely my feet, they’re horrible! Also my legs, they’re way too hairy. I like I have a very large torso, so it helps to look stylish. I like my height.
If you wanna know more about Diego Alfaro, go to his Instagram.