Kristin Gallegos wants this to be the 60s. Bent over the old record player she puts on another Rolling Stones album and tells me she hates Birkenstocks and has big fat issues with norm core. “People always dressed up in the 60s!” she claims. “I never leave the house dressed down, not even to run errands.” And that’s probably true. I’ve never seen her in flats, or sneakers, or without make-up. Her blunt bangs have been jet black since she decided to go retro goth a decade ago, and her shoes are so tall that even her close friends have forgotten her real height. She’s a devoted pre-nose-surgery Cher fan and sticks “to the classics” when it comes to music. She has a shaggy pink rug in the living room, shoots polaroid film and wears vintage suede skirts like a champ. In this tiny one-bedroom apartment in the Lower East Side, things are most definitely not of this era.
I don’t know how old Kristin is – “A lady never tells!” – but she’s done good for herself so far. She grew up in California with her dad, a street light electrician, and stay-at-home mom and older sister Celena. “She is a quadriplegic,” says Kristin. “She got into a car accident when she was really young. So she lives with my parents in Upland and my mom is her care taker. My fondest childhood memory would have to be when my dad won an all-expenses-paid trip to Disneyworld in Orlando on KIIS FM. We were pretty poor so we would never have been able to go on a vacation so it was pretty amazing. I was in first grade but from what I can remember the trip was pretty epic! And the only vacation my family ever took together!”
As a kid Kristin had her mind set on being a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre. She studied classical ballet for nine years. “I got burned out though and had a lot of injuries and quit dancing at 17.” She attempted college for one semester but decided school was not for her and invested in a career that didn’t require any of it: beauty. She’s now an established make-up artist and has worked with the best, including photographer extraordinaire David Bailey. “He is such a legend!!!” she cheers. “His photo book Birth Of Cool is my favorite!”
But in these modern, social times a one-track, one-career mind is a preposterous notion, and as such, life demanded more of the mod maven. “About a year ago I started shooting portraits of my beautiful girlfriends out and about and posting them to Instagram,” she recalls. “After a few months companies started DMing me to shoot for them! So I have been shooting commissioned work since January of this year.” She art-directs, styles and grooms all her own photos, and never trails from her blessed 60s esthetic. Same goes for the weekly Ladies Night she’s been hosting and DJing with fellow Muse and 60s transplant Alix Brown at new spot Berlin in the East Village. They play rock ‘n roll and party till the wee hours.
Which brings me to the glamorous subject of ‘boyfriends’. “Yes, I am single but dating,” she states without flinching. “Dating in New York City is interesting. I am a party girl and very social so I meet people constantly whether it be out or while working. So I have never had to download a dating app. The internet weirds me out. I think NYC dating has gotten crazy because of it and people, myself included, are always looking for something better. Our dating attention span is very short. I do love having a boyfriend but also enjoy being single. I have been for two years now. Maybe it’s time for at least a Winter boyfriend!” Don’t mind if I do!