Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?


Monica Jaramillo

Hi! I first wanted to say thank you to everyone, thank you!

My story? Hmm, what is my story? Let’s begin with having my son because before that, that person died the day my son was born. Strange right? How in seconds, your ENTIRE existence can change; your thoughts, how you lived, your life… Poof! Gone. That’s bananas. Erik is currently 9 years old.

I started with the birth of my son for two reasons, 1. I can’t seem to remember much of my life before Erik & 2. I was reborn; a completely different person from the moment he arrived. So here I was about to turn 30 two weeks after he was born, by myself, my mother unable to help, and with a NEWBORN. Say What?!? All of sudden? Madness.

The first 2 years are a fog, I absolutely went into robot mode, leaning on very little motherly instinct I had to somehow keep this brand new human alive. When Erik was about 2, my mom died.

That was naturally devastating of course. Here I thought I was going to have my mom’s help, be able to drop Erik off, and get some relief…or how about him learning Spanish & passing down our Colombian upbringing from my mom? Needless to say, my plan didn’t go as I envisioned it.

Erik’s father and I agreed on 50/50, based on our word, no courts; one less thing to worry about. Thankfully his dad is a wonderful and loving father. So, besides keeping a baby alive, I still had to work, pay bills, function and attempt to have a normal life. Gratefully, that immediate force of change is what has led me here, this moment.

My schedule had to be flexible so I could be with Erik on the days that I had him. I chose to not work a 9-5, and I started consulting for a few businesses & went back to bartending. Jump a year and I went to work with Spirit Airlines; The hours were flexible and I was able to work around Erik’s schedule, it was perfect.

Important side note: Before Erik, my hair was long, curly, and black. A few weeks into my pregnancy, I cut it all off, into a pixie, and became me. I am absolutely a short-haired girl; short hair just fit my active lifestyle.

Fast forward, I decided to grow my hair out, I had had short hair for a few years and wanted something new. It started growing out, curly and gray. At this point, I wasn’t dying my hair, its shoulder length, no social media but the passengers at work would consistently tell me how my hair was beautiful and how gray hair was trending.

I felt flattered but would blow it off. The pandemic hits, I brainstorm for an Instagram handle and I come up with CurlyGrayMagic and get this, it was available. Side note: I, one billion percent believe in magic.

One day I was on the app Meetups and I came across a workshop called The Business End of Modeling/Acting with Sara Rogers. It was held virtually on a weekend I didn’t have Erik so I booked it. I thought, let me see if I truly want to get into this business. That workshop changed my path. Sara Rogers changed my path. Sara gave us SO much useful & helpful information during those 3 hours that I decided to hire her privately.

The pandemic is what started making me think about what I wanted to do for income. Did I want to go back to work where I was underpaid, overworked, and the scheduling would cause an insane amount of stress? No! I surely did not. For the record, I LOVED working at Spirit but I knew that I wanted more flexibility.

So what did I do? I worked privately with Sara, had my headshots done by Bob Lasky, opened my LLC, paid GoDaddy for my website (That I’m still working on), and opened & paid subscriptions to all the casting websites such as Casting Networks, Backstage & Actors Access.

I was signed by Stellar Talent & the rest is a rollercoaster. I started booking in July 2021 & now here we are, a little over 2 years later and I am a working commercial model/actress. My hair seems to still be trending and I’m so very grateful for it. If you would’ve told me that my gray hair was going to become my income in the future, I would’ve laughed with you.


Most importantly, this life has given me the ability to be present with Erik. I’m committed to taking acting classes to better this skill. For my soul, I take private ballroom lessons, dance classes, and workshops. I rollerblade, cycle, and dance every chance I get. For me, dancing is vital for my functioning. It guides me into my flow, elevates my frequency to its highest capacity, and allows me to be my most joyful self.

Third side note: I don’t know what I’m doing, I don’t know where this is all going to take me. I just know that I have to dance my way into my best self to be a good human, a good mother and overall better self. One step at a time. I’m living my life as I create it.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
No, it absolutely has not been a smooth road but a smooth road won’t create opportunities for growth. Growth comes when you leap, risk it all and fail… over and over again. I have a sentence written on my calendar that says, ‘I love my rejection slips, they show me I tried”.

For me, the biggest struggle in this industry is negative self-talk. Primarily when you don’t get selected after an audition or a call-back. The self-doubt creeps in and it makes you question whether you’re even able to do this.

Writing this makes me giggle because I’m self-aware enough to understand that not being selected has nothing to do with me, however, it doesn’t hurt your heart any less.

The trick is to not stay in those thoughts and emotions. The universe loves me and I trust that she provides; the bookings that are mine, are already mine. I trust in her redirection.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I can’t say that I specialize in anything just yet but I’m currently focusing solely on booking commercials. They align with Erik’s schedule and they don’t require week-long commitments; they usually film for 2-3 days at a time.

I’m currently known for my hair and my smile. When I first started, I did some work for The Sylvester Cancer Institute and even while wearing a mask, people were able to recognize me because of my hair. It’s a cool feeling.

I’m most proud of taking a chance and getting into this business regardless of feeling like I wasn’t skilled enough, pretty enough, tall enough, or thin enough.

My hair sets me apart from others but also how new I am. I’ve been on a set where others sit and complain about the wait time, the call time, the food, the this, and the that. Since I’m so new, I don’t have anything to compare my set days to anything else. I simply feel so grateful to be on set, to be selected. I take coffee, my sweater, all my journals, my reading material, headsets, and an extra charger to keep me comfy on set. I’m a big foodie so if there’s coffee and food, I’m in heaven.

What sort of changes are you expecting over the next 5-10 years?
I feel the inclusive movement will stop being a movement and just be what it is. Humans come in all different ways, with different looks, hair, faces, features, skin color, and bodies. Decades ago, a normal woman like me wouldn’t have been accepted into this industry unless I was 5’7, extra thin, extra perfect, and definitely without gray hair.


I’m happy that this industry has shifted into allowing all kinds of humans to be in this field. We all don’t look the same and that’s the point. It does wonders for our mental health but most of all, for the children watching us.

Contact Info:
Instagram: @CurlyGrayMagic