These Facts About Eva Mendes Make Her Even More Appealing

Eva Mendes emerged in the ’90s as a charismatic model and actress with eye-catching good looks. The Cuban performer has been noted for bringing diversity to the world of leading ladies and for keeping her personal life out of the limelight. While Eva is highly private, she has let a few secrets slip, like her distaste for her first films and her deep love of therapy. You may also be surprised to find that she has a beautiful singing voice and is a designer! Read on for more facts about Eva Mendes that make her all the more fan-worthy.

She Doesn’t Post About Her Family

Sonia Recchia/Getty Images
Sonia Recchia/Getty Images

Eva Mendes met Ryan Gosling in 2011 on the set of The Place Beyond The Pines. They since have had two daughters, making it even more important to keep their personal life under wraps.

The famous actress explained on Instagram that she doesn’t post about her immediate family for two reasons. For one, she says she wants to wait until her children are old enough to give her consent to post about them. For two, it works better for her and Ryan’s relationship to keep things out of the public eye.

She Didn’t Always Want Kids

Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for New York & Company
Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for New York & Company

Eva told Independent that having kids was “the furthest thing from my mind.” She explained that everything changed when she met Ryan Gosling. It wasn’t that she suddenly wanted to have kids, but that she realized she wanted to have his kids, she clarified.

She went on to say that she carefully hides her fame from her children. Eva doesn’t let them see her all dressed up for an A-lister event and she keeps them off the set. She noted that she’s “more than happy to just be Mom” to her kids.

She Used To Want To Be A Nun

Venturelli/WireImage/Getty Images
Venturelli/WireImage/Getty Images

Eva Mendes was born in Miami, Florida to Cuban parents who raised her Roman Catholic. She says that when she was little, she wanted to be a nun for a short time. Eva changed her mind when her sister noted that nuns don’t get paid.

After her parents divorced, Eva moved to Los Angeles with her mother. Eva’s mom even worked at Mann’s Chinese Theatre for a time, so it’s no surprise that Eva got the acting bug.

She Went To College For Marketing

eva-mendes-4
John Parra/Getty Images for Estee Lauder
John Parra/Getty Images for Estee Lauder

Eva Mendes didn’t initially plan on becoming an actress. After graduating from Hoover High School in Glendale, she studied Marketing at California State University, Northridge. She eventually dropped out of college to study acting with Ivana Chubbuck.

Eva was discovered when a talent manager saw her picture in a friend’s portfolio. Her first film role was in a direct-to-video horror film called Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror. The same year she appeared in A Night at the Roxbury starring Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan.

Training Day Was Her Saving Grace

Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.

Though Eva was able to secure roles early on, she wasn’t always happy with the material. In an interview with Cosmopolitan, Eva explained that her voice was dubbed in the 2001 action film Exit Wounds because she “didn’t sound intelligent enough.”

Disappointed in her early performances, Eva hired an acting coach. Still, she was growing tired of acting in “terrible, cheesy, horrible” films. Her saving grace was landing a role in Training Day, a box office smash starring Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke.

She First Appeared In Music Videos

Columbia Records
Columbia Records

Before Eva’s acting career launched, she first appeared in a Pet Shop Boy’s music video in 1996 for their song “Se a Vida é (That’s The Way Life Is).” The following year, Eva was featured in the music video for “Hole in my Soul,” a power ballad by Aerosmith.

In 1998, Eva appeared in the music video for “Miami,” which earned Will Smith an MTV VMA award for Best Male Video. Eva and Will Smith later reunited as love interests in the 2005 rom-com Hitch.

Eva Can Sing!

eva mendes in a small room
Cindy Ord/Getty Images for New York & Company
Cindy Ord/Getty Images for New York & Company

Eva sang a few lines in Will Smith’s “Miami,” which peaked at number 17 in the US and number 3 in the UK. But it wasn’t until 2010 that she really showed off her vocal talent in “Pimps Don’t Cry,” a duet she sang alongside CeeLo Green.

The song was featured in The Other Guys, a comedy starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg. The following year, Eva sang “The Windmills of Your Mind,” a decades-old song she recorded for a perfume ad.

She Is A Model

Charles Bladen/GC Images
Charles Bladen/GC Images

It may come as no surprise that the beautiful actress is a natural in front of the camera. She signed with Revlon in 2005 and has worked as their spokesperson to raise funds for breast cancer research.

Eva has also been the spokesperson for Magnum, Cocio, Calvin Klein, and Australia’s 30 Days of Fashion and Beauty event. She has appeared in campaigns for Pantene shampoo, Reebok shoes, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), Peek & Cloppenburg clothing, and more.

She Is A Fashion Designer

Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for New York & Company
Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for New York & Company

In 2008, Eva broke into the world of design by launching a line of home decor. Featuring bed linens and dinnerware, her decor brand has since been sold at Macy’s. In 2013, she started Eva by Eva Mendes, a fashion line she created by partnering with New York & Co.

The multitalented star is also the creative director of CIRCA, a makeup brand sold exclusively at Walgreens. She collaborated with New York’s beauty product manufacturer Maesa to launch the brand in 2015.

She Doesn’t Believe In Marriage

Jason Merritt/Getty Images
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

In a 2011 interview with Hollywood Life, Eva revealed that she doesn’t believe in marriage because she doesn’t think it’s necessary. She noted that what marriage first symbolized is very far removed from why people get married today.

Based on Eva’s track record, it’s clear that her thoughts on marriage have nothing to do with a distaste for commitment. Ryan Gosling is only one of two men that the public eye has seen Eva date. The first was Peruvian filmmaker George Augusto, whom she was with from 2002 until 2010.

She Is A Vegetarian

eva-mendes-
Lester Cohen/WireImage/Getty Images
Lester Cohen/WireImage/Getty Images

Eva Mendes told Women’s Health that she cut out meat in 2009 because “I don’t agree with factory farming here.” She added that for her, not eating meat made her feel better right away.

After one year of being a vegetarian, she discovered that her skin was brighter and her overall health had improved. Though she initially went vegetarian for ethical reasons, the positive impact on her appearance has been a bonus, especially after having children in her 40s.

She Doesn’t Like Working Out

Mark Mainz/Getty Images
Mark Mainz/Getty Images

Eva has ranked as one of the most beautiful women by multiple media outlets. So, you would think she must love working out to stay so fit. In actuality, Eva has admitted that she, “doesn’t love” working out, but that she’s “made peace with that.”

She told Women’s Health, “I realized a long time ago that I needed to have some kind of routine.” Of course, she has a trainer to help her stay in shape by doing weights, sprints, yoga, and hiking.

She LOVES Therapy

Venturelli/WireImage/Getty Images
Venturelli/WireImage/Getty Images

In an interview with Vulture, Eva admitted that she goes to therapy “just for fun.” She says she sees one “not for a specific thing, but just, like, maintenance.” Eva also notes that she’s a “painfully” private person, but opens up about therapy in interviews to encourage others to help break the stigma.

Eva also mentioned trying to get her family to go to therapy and being met with resistance: “They’re old-school, they still think that something’s got to be fundamentally wrong with you if you go. And I, obviously, I completely disagree.”

Her Dog Is Her Security

Donato Sardella/Getty Images for New York & Company
Donato Sardella/Getty Images for New York & Company

In the same Vulture interview, Eva also mentioned her dog, a Belgian Malinois named Hugo. She says that her beloved canine “goes with me everywhere” and is both her companion and her security, as he is a trained attack dog.

Eva loves her dog so much that she suggested conducting the interview at Tompkins Square Park Dog Run in New York. The plan fell through when she realized her dog would be in LA and that going to the park without him would be, “like going to an elementary school when your kid is not in it.”

She Takes Role Preparation Very Seriously

eva-mendes
Michael N. Todaro/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Michael N. Todaro/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Eva mentioned that she and German film director Werner Herzog sometimes clashed while on the set of Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans. Though Eva calls Werner a genius who she would love to work with again, she also says she “annoyed him [with] actor-y questions and concerns.

She says, “I love creating backstory and figuring out the moment before and all your obstacles in your scene, and all that fun stuff, but he wasn’t about it at all.”

She Was Nominated Worst Actress

Kevin Winter/Getty Images for AFI
Kevin Winter/Getty Images for AFI

2008 was not the year for Eva Mendes in terms of production quality. After blockbuster hits 2 Fast 2 Furious and Once Upon A Time In Mexico put Eva on the map, her success wavered with criticized movies like Ghost Rider and The Spirit.

Her 2008 role in The Women earned Eva a Golden Raspberry nomination for Worst Actress. Critics condemned the all-female comedy, which featured Eva as a suave perfume salesgirl and mistress scorned by the film’s lead, Meg Ryan.

She Is Proud Of Being Latino

Tony Barson/WireImage/Getty Images
Tony Barson/WireImage/Getty Images

In an interview with HuffPost, Eva admitted that being a Latino woman in Hollywood isn’t always a walk in the park. She said that her greatest frustration is when she doesn’t get a role because she isn’t “American” enough, despite being born and raised here.

By the same token, she states that ethnic diversity is “the way of the future,” noting that she speaks both English and Spanish without an accent. Eva’s leading role in Girl in Progress won her an ALMA (American Latino Media Arts) nomination for Favorite Movie Actress.

She Was Featured In A PBS Documentary

James Devaney/WireImage/Getty Images
James Devaney/WireImage/Getty Images

In 2012, the PBS series Independent Lens featured a two-part special based on the nonfiction book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide. Eva Mendes was one of six female celebrities who visited developing countries for the documentary.

Eva visited Sierra Leone where she observed the struggles of girls and women in the area who are fighting to rise above their circumstances. The cast and crew also visited organizations that aim to provide opportunities to these women.

She Starred In Ryan Gosling’s Directorial Debut

lost-river
Bold Films
Bold Films

In 2014, Ryan Gosling made his directorial debut with the film Lost River. The fantasy-thriller follows a single mother (played by Christina Hendricks) and her son as they discover an underwater town in Detroit.

Eva Mendes starred in her beau’s film as the main performer in a cabaret. Eva’s character performs in a gory show that embodies the dystopian setting of the film. Gosling both wrote and directed the metaphorical film, which was met with mixed reviews.

She’s On A Film Hiatus

Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images
Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images

Eva has remained out of the limelight ever since her appearance in Lost River. Being that her eldest child was born in 2014 and that she is adamant about keeping motherhood and Hollywood separate, we would guess that she is taking some family time.

Eva and Gosling welcome their second child, another girl, in 2016. Talk of Eva returning to the big screen has yet to emerge, but we’ll be keeping a lookout for the dazzling actress.