A Self-Made Marketing ‘Unicorn’ Reveals Her Secrets 

Meet the Industry Phenomenon - Industry Named ' 'Unicorn of Marketing’' a Global Business Muse & Strategic Thought Leader Elevating Brands to Unimaginable Success


Bernardina “Nina” Vargas is a Global Business/Celebrity Strategist known for connecting the best new international beauty, wellness, and fashion brands with the high-level exposure and success formulas they need to thrive within the US market. With more than three decades of proven expertise in personal and professional branding, business development, strategic planning, and targeted marketing, Vargas has empowered hundreds of beauty/fashion brands and influencers to remain ahead of the game in a rapidly advancing industry. She knows exactly what US retailers are looking for in a product and she is passionate about supporting emerging brands in their ambitious goals to reach American consumers and exponentially grow their businesses. 

Born in Los Angeles to a single mother who had immigrated to the US from Mexico, Vargas understood at a young age that anything she wanted in this world would have to be earned through hard work and a tenacious belief in herself. She quickly developed an interest in fashion design, and after finishing high school at the age of 14, she pursued further education at LA’s prestigious Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM). During that time, she worked on projects for global brands that included Armani Exchange, Steve Madden, and The Jones Group to name a few. These real-world experiences ignited a desire to support and promote new talent in the industry, which led her across the country to a corporate role with MAXSTUDIO.COM in New York City. There, she focused on retail and public relations opportunities, steadily working her way up to Director of Operations. 

Eventually, Vargas became disillusioned with the corporate world. She appreciated the ability to build brands but wanted the full flexibility to run operations according to her own values and priorities. She had earned the expertise to make the rules for herself and to pursue partnerships based on criteria other than profits. More than anything, she wanted to give gifted artists – dreamers who might not meet the standards of a corporate entity – a real chance at success. She also envisioned shaping a family-like team culture and an environment in which associates could safely take risks, try new things, and make mistakes without the stifling oversight of upper management. As an independent consultant, she found an unparalleled success all her own by doing things differently, establishing a refreshingly collaborative reputation in a notoriously cutthroat industry based on the belief that there is enough opportunity in the marketplace for everyone. 

Today, Vargas leverages her strong track record of impressive wins to strengthen US brands in industries across the board, including beauty, wellness, and fashion markets, generating new and exciting opportunities for brands with immense untapped potential. She particularly enjoys taking on the unique challenge of introducing eastern products to western consumers, expanding commonly held industry-wide ideas about marketing best practices. Her distinctive eye for good design has also made her a go-to expert for global publications and brand campaign teams seeking insightful production and creative direction for photo spreads and cover shoots. This August, she returned to her home city of LA to partner with Tamala Lewis and top talent from around the globe on a multi-generational hip-hop documentary. The project is set to offers unique content marketing opportunities for top-tier individuals and brands alongside a distinguished and diverse worldwide sponsor list that includes the Omni Los Angeles Hotel, Cross Colours, PacSun, Skechers, La Peony Clothing, AFD, and many more. 

Throughout her illustrious career, Vargas has emerged as a compelling advocate and influential champion for women within the realm of marketing and brand exposure. With a down-to-earth demeanor, she effortlessly forges connections with industry professionals whom she sees immense potential in. This ability not only expands her network, but also allows her to nurture, guide, and impart invaluable industry insights to those around her. Revered as an industry “unicorn” by trusted allies she has cultivated over decades, such as Jessica Kopach-Paulson, founder of The JKO Agency, their partnership has flourished, a testament to years of tireless dedication and unwavering passion. Renowned clients and esteemed brands like AFD’s Founder, Dr. LAURA PURDY seek Vargas’s expertise, recognizing her unparalleled ability to envision the bigger picture and provide the voice and confidence necessary to raise the bar. Vargas possesses a discerning eye for talent, empowering individuals who share her ethics and mission, while her internal teams greatly value her guidance. She instills trust, believing it to be the foundation of creating value, a sentiment echoed by clients, colleagues, and industry professionals alike. Her outstanding company culture demonstrates the extraordinary power of collaboration, rejecting the prevailing “win/lose” narrative in favor of a transformative “win/win” mindset that fuels a robust bottom line. Fearlessly pursuing her own dreams, Vargas serves as an inspirational example of what can be achieved through hard work. Her extensive global network is a testament to her unwavering determination, as she brings her innovative vision of branding and marketing to life. Despite her demanding schedule, she remains steadfast in prioritizing holistic wellness, setting a positive example for those in her sphere. Leveraging cutting-edge wellness technology and working alongside trainer Alex Lagoutte at Iron Bodyfit Gym in Manhattan’s vibrant Chelsea neighborhood, she maximizes her fitness regimen, achieving the benefits of a four-hour workout in just 25 minutes.

Beyond her consulting and philanthropic endeavors, Vargas assumes the role of Principal Owner at The LA Fashion Multi Media Inc, a position that encapsulates her extraordinary drive and ambition. Originally enlisted as a consultant to fuel the platform’s growth, she swiftly recognized the potential for transforming it into a comprehensive and dynamic marketing agency. With unwavering determination, she seamlessly transitioned from marketing consultant to the esteemed positions of Editor-in-Chief and CEO, ultimately acquiring and reimagining the entire enterprise. Now overseen and managed by Vagas’ prodigies, Mike Yi and Elva Wu, the platform forms strategic alliances with an array of international and domestic clients, spanning across both established giants and emerging ventures. Vargas leverages her past influential role as a prominent social media influencer in the realms of fashion, beauty and wellness, refining an unparalleled SNS (Social Networking Service) Marketing approach. Armed with her distinctive analytical insights and unparalleled industry expertise, she possesses an innate ability to cultivate genuine connections between brands and consumers, forging lasting impressions that yield genuine value. In a world where finding a remarkable leader is akin to discovering a mythical creature, Vargas shines as a beacon of authenticity and true intention. She possesses the remarkable ability to uplift everyone around her, serving as a mentor, a learner, and a guide on the path to success. Amidst an industry often marked by cutthroat competition and a lack of unity, Vargas’s unwavering talent has brought forth a radiant and enchanting light. Like a true unicorn, she embodies a rare combination of exceptional skill and grounded humility, treating every relationship with equal importance and steadfastly defending her beliefs, her team, her clients, and her circle. Witnessing her impact is nothing short of magical, as she weaves her unique brand of leadership into a tapestry of unity, trust, and growth.

Listed among Vargas’ impressive portfolio of accomplishments are partnerships with national companies and organizations like Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW), Cosmoprof NA, Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers and Distributors (now the Independent Beauty Association), Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Mexico, national music festivals, NYFW Productions, and many more. In 2018, she accepted AEG’s prestigious Women in Entertainment Award, becoming the global corporation’s official 2019-21 magazine sponsor. That same year, Vargas also received the coveted Beverly Hills Publishing grant and was invited to sit on the Forbes.com advisory panel. Throughout each new venture, the marketing media juggernaut maintains focus on an overarching mission to break industry stigmas by supporting noteworthy brands, helping to level the playing field for extraordinary newcomers who seek to make an impact on an expanding global market. 

Learn more at ninabvargas.com. Follow on Instagram @ninabvargas for industry insider footage and the latest West Coast style inspo.

Photo Credit:

Photographer, Mike Yi

Stylist, Elva Wu

HnM, Liz Dizon

James Thompson

James Thompson is a highly respected writer and author who contributes to Forbes Morocco, a leading business and finance publication based in Morocco. With over a decade of experience in the industry, James is known for his exceptional writing skills and his ability to deliver compelling stories that captivate readers.

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