The Mexican American telenovela star talks to People CHICA about raising her kids with actor William Levy and getting ready to make her acting comeback after years away from the small screen.

Por Lena Hansen
Agosto 26, 2020
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Elizabeth Gutiérrez and her daughter, Kailey Levy, enjoyed getting all glammed up for an exclusive People en Español photo shoot in Miami promoting vintage fashion. "I felt like an extra, she was the main model!" Gutiérrez jokes about Kailey, who she shares with Cuban actor William Levy (they also have a 14-year-old son, Christopher). "She loves playing dress up and she looked like a princess," she adds about her daughter, who enjoys dancing and singing in TikTok videos and dreams of becoming an actress like her famous parents.

Foto por Omar Cruz para People en Español

Kailey will have a killer wardrobe when she's ready to make her big debut. The Mexican American telenovela star, 41, says she is keeping her favorite vintage clothes and red-carpet looks for her 10-year-old daughter when she is older. "She always tells me you have to be yourself, you can't be fake," Kailey says about her mom's advice. "My dad tells me to pretend that you don't have the camera in front of you, to be natural."

Foto por Omar Cruz para People en Español

Gutiérrez pressed pause on her career in 2012 after starring in telenovelas like El Rostro de la Venganza and El Fantasma de Elena to devote herself fully to her role as a mom. Now, she says she is ready to come back to the small screen now that her kids are older. "It was because of my family," she says of her decision to stay home raising her children while Levy pursued his acting career and supported the family.

"Both he and I were at the top of our careers, we were both working, we were doing really well individually, and our kids were home for many hours without us," she explains. "He was in Mexico, I was here, so I just felt that it was important for me as a mother and as a woman to take a pause in my career and give my family that attention that they needed. I made a choice to become a mom and I wanted to raise my kids. Even though a part of me missed the novelas, when I was in the studio recording the novelas I missed being home with my kids. It was a decision that I didn't have to think about."

Foto por Omar Cruz para People en Español

The stunning beauty— who has also shined as a model, beauty entrepreneur, blogger, and Mira Quien Baila contestant — says she misses acting and is open to new television or film projects. "Now with my kids being older, I do want do something because I also want them to see what their mom did," she says. "They were too young to remember me acting. I've shown Kailey some of my novelas and she's like, 'Wow, Mommy, you're really good!' It would be a dream for me to take my kids to the studio with me and for them to see their mom do what she does."

Gutiérrez says she and Levy have raised their kids to be humble and kind, teaching them by example not to let fame get to their heads (even though Kailey and Christopher are no strangers to red carpets, having been featured in magazines and approached by other kids who ask for their autographs).

The actress met Levy, 39, in 2003 when they were both contestants on the Telemundo reality show Protagonistas de Novelas. The then-unknown stars were in their 20s and looking for a chance to land starring roles in a telenovela, but found love in the process. Even though she was born in Los Angeles and identifies strongly with her American culture, Gutiérrez says acting in Spanish was a natural choice for her. "I grew up in L.A. but in a very Hispanic family. I watched novelas growing up and life just brought me to the Spanish market," she says. "But I would love to act in English, that's been my dream. I feel more comfortable speaking English, but telenovelas were my roots and I couldn't deny doing them."

The influencer — who has over 2.5 million followers on Instagram — loves to inspire other Latinas to be strong and confident, starting with her own daughter. "I love empowering women. I want younger women to feel confident. That's why it's so important for me to raise a strong girl, because I was once a little girl who was insecure," she explains. "I feel it's important for parents to be there and create a safe place for kids to come to, and for them to know that their parents support all their crazy ideas, and to feel safe to explore and be themselves. That's when magic happens."

To see more exclusive photos of Elizabeth and Kailey, look for the new issue of People en Español, on stands now.