In honor of her 44th birthday, we’re celebrating everything we love and admire about the one and only Eva Longoria. That’s right, everyone’s favorite not-so-desperate housewife is turning 44 years old. We’ll let that sink in. Because clearly this beauty does not look a day over 29. But despite her perpetually peaking and ageless appearance, she’s embracing everything that her 40s has to offer. Which only makes us love her more.
Dear Eva (can we please call you Eva?),
Ever since you first graced our screens several years ago we knew that you were something special. But it wasn’t until your starring role as Gabrielle Solis in Desperate Housewives that you really became a household name. And you made quite an impression living out every young woman’s fantasy of getting hot and heavy with Jesse Metcalfe. You stole the show and stole our hearts. Finally, someone relatable. Someone funny and sassy and full of fire and passion, but also flawed and very real.
To this day you work hard to bring more Latina talent and Latin American culture to the big and small screen, by producing shows like Devious Maids, about four Latina maids and Telenovela, a comedy that goes behind the scenes of a fictional telenovela. You also direct and you work hard to ensure that there is Latinx representation in media, and that there are roles and opportunities for Latinas in Hollywood. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed, and you were honored with the Variety Latino Visionary Award in 2015 to celebrate your work towards inclusion both on screen and behind-the-scenes. For that we are forever grateful.
We love that you love to eat, and like any food-loving Latina, you are passionate about embracing your Mexican-American culinary traditions both personally and professionally with your cookbook, Eva’s Kitchen: Cooking with Love for Family and Friends. If you ever want to invite us over for your famous guacamole, we are totally down.
You put your family first, a quality we respect, adore and try to emulate in our own lives. And you do it your own way. After two failed marriages (one of which was a very public divorce from basketball star Tony Parker), you found love again. In an interview with Health you explain that your husband makes you happiest. “Hearing him breathe makes me happy. It’s not like, “Oh, I love marriage.” I love being married to him. He’s just — I can’t even believe we found each other. We complement each other. We’re supportive of each other. We adore each other. It’s really sickening, and anybody who’s around us is like, “Ugh.”” If anyone else said something so cheesy we might roll our eyes, but the way you gush about your husband and your marriage gives us hope for our own relationships.
And can we please talk about your adorable baby Santiago? I mean, is it even fair for a baby to be so cute? We love that you started a family in your own way and in your own time. At the age of 43 you gave birth to your “beautiful blessing” and while you are clearly obsessed with your baby, you also got real about how uncomfortable and awkward everything is during pregnancy. We feel you Eva, we really do. Every picture we see of you snuggling your beautiful baby boy makes us smile, even though you constantly look like you are flawless and glowing in ways we never ever did when we had a newborn baby and endless sleepless nights.
But perhaps one of the things we love most about you is your activism. You stand for something, and you work tirelessly to make the world a better place for all, and especially for young Latina women. Your Eva Longoria Foundation helps Latinas build better futures for themselves and their families through education and entrepreneurship. You work to inspire and empower Latinas and help prepare them for successful futures.
You fight for women’s rights and equal pay through education. On your Instagram feed you posted: “Today is #LatinaEqualPayDay! The average Latina makes 47% less than the average white man, but 66% of American workers recognize this pay gap as unfair,” said Longoria, “Education is the first step towards making a change — get the facts from new research by @SurveyMonkey & @LeanInOrg. #47PercentCounts #LatinaEqualPay”
And everything you do is in an effort to inspire the next generation of Latinx youth. You know that your fame has granted you a voice and an opportunity to change people’s lives. You know that if young Latina women see a successful, powerful Latina woman they will see what they are capable of and what is possible in their own lives. You’re committed to getting more Latinas into STEM through education programs that teach young women technology skills such as coding, robotics, video game design, and 3D printing. You will not stop until you empower young girls and set them up for success in the future.
Eva – you are an inspiration to Latinx women everywhere, and in honor of your 44th birthday (but really every day) we celebrate you. Thank you for everything, and we wish you another beautiful year around the sun.