Lady P. Galore. It was my greatest honor to have this opportunity to write about her. If you read a lot of my articles, you would know that I am a fan of drag queens. I admire them – their confidence, beauty, and talent. I have always wished to have more means to meet these talented ladies. They have become a symbol of power through the expression of their authentic selves. Join me as we take a deep dive into her art of drag. She bared her soul answering the questions I gave. Miss Galore talked about her drag, what inspired it and how it represents Joffer Palmares.
Joffer Palmares introduced Lady P. Galore in 2015
Miss Galore talked about how she started doing drag, not expecting that she would make it her career.
“My friend and coworker Jerry introduced me to drag. It started when we had a Holiday party at work in December 2015 and 3 of us performed as Bang Bang Girls, I was Ariana Grande that night. Jerry did my drag makeup but I chose my own outfit and wig for the show. It was the talk at work the day after the party. And based on that, friends and coworkers are already planning to invite us to perform for the following holiday party.”
After the origin story of her drag persona, she then talked about her efforts on how she improved it. She narrated how she tried her best to learn and polish her craft.
“So the following year, summer of 2016, I enrolled in a drag makeup workshop here at San Francisco, so I don’t have to depend on my friend to do makeup for me. I improve and enhance my skills doing drag makeup through YouTube tutorials. I remember I would stay up every Friday night until 5 AM applying makeup and dressing up myself in drag. I’m a perfectionist in my way and I keep trying until I harness my skills.”
When Lady P. Galore started to get the hang of it. She elaborated,
“In December of that year, I performed again, this time I did my own makeup and I did four outfit changes that night. It felt good performing live in front of my coworkers and friends. And from that moment I started investing in good makeup and brushes. And more glam with my outfits. Val Taguba did my very first glam gown I wore on my first outdoor pictorial in Havana, Cuba. The rest is history.”
Lady P. Galore gives Joffer more freedom to be himself
“Being in drag takes me roughly 3-4 hours. Make it 5 hours for the wigs and outfit. It is hard work but it pays off after you see the whole transformation. It also comes to the realization that beauty is pain. When in drag I have more freedom to express myself. I can be funny but pretty and glam. It’s good for my ego and very flattering that I am able to entertain people and be funtabulous at the same time.”
Whenever I hear a name of a drag queen, I always wonder how it came to be. She shared hers.
“Lady Pussy Galore. When I started my first year in drag, I never wanted a name. I was not thinking that I would be doing this until now. So my best friend April came up with this name, to be honest. She’s the reason why ladyPussygalore is here. If you remember the James bond movie gold finger 1959 leading lady? She’s very glam and luxe. That’s how I came up with the name and the way I dress up as well.”
But of course, drag is an expensive hobby and job. It requires money in order to achieve the best transformation. Lady P. Galore also talked about this.
“I find it more fun for me even though it’s expensive and tiring. With the pandemic last year, the world suffered. People lost their jobs. But with my career as a nurse here in the US, I am still able to supplement my expensive drag hobbies. I was able to support 3 amazing local designers from the Philippines, creating my glam and fabulous gowns, accessories, and shoes. and keep their business afloat.”
I also asked this gorgeous queen how her experience is as a Filipino drag queen. Her answer is heartwarming, in a way. She narrated how people are very accepting.
“I always have fun when I’m in drag. Cause once you’re in drag, you always feel uninhibited, powerful, glamorous, and funny. You have this oozing confidence that you make people happy. They don’t see the color of your skin but they see you as this Glam in drag and in heels.”
She shared some cute encounters with people,
“I remember my first outdoor pictorial in Havana wearing a Val Taguba gown in orange color, they stopped and snapped photos of me. The cars would stop and give me compliments. The locals would take pictures of me.”
Miss P. Galore also told the story when she traveled to the Zambales mountains.
“Also, I hiked the Mt Pinatubo crater in full makeup and I changed in front of the kids and explained to them how I’m trying to achieve to dress up as a woman. They were amazed at the transformation and they even helped out with the photoshoot we did at the crater; It’s been very positive in my experience since I’ve been doing this.”
Joffer Palmares aka Lady P. Galore’s charity work, Backpack for the Future
“I have traveled around the world in luxury, comfort, and not, it teaches me so much about the different cultures and traditions in the world. But one thing that struck me with my travels, is education. We teach everyone the basic norms of life even just at home. My travels opened up to the idea of taking gifts to kids wherever I travel to the 3rd world.”
Joffer also is a nurse aside from being a drag queen. He also uses this as a way to give back to the community. Mr. Palmares further said,
“I also do Voluntary surgical missions when I can as An operating room nurse in SF. I would bring candies, chocolates, or things from the US to the Philippines, Cuba, Africa, Asia. On my travels. Then one day the group I traveled with to Havana decided to bring a backpack and school supplies and donated to the Nuns in Havana who teach kids in their neighborhoods.”
He didn’t have the luxury of having new backpacks and school supplies. This is what inspired him to do Backpack for the Future.
“Last 2019 me and my friend Amor started planning to give back by giving away backpacks. Since I am doing outdoor photoshoots too on the remote islands where we are traveling, why not do this outreach at the same time. it also happened to be Christmas, it’s a perfect gift for the kids.”
Joffer shared his experience on how they started the project with his friend and how it went.
“We did the research and logistics and made contact with the locals where we were going. At first, it’s just one school. We targeted at least 200 kids but when a friend suggested creating a fundraiser we came up with funds that we were able to make. 6 dollars will sponsor a kid with backpack or school supplies. We were able to fund 600 kids with backpacks and school supplies.”
His drag, Lady P. Galore was even featured in the international magazine of the press OUTRE. It gave him a chance to do fundraising for the magazine. The proceeds funded the program in a way.
After these accomplishments, he also shared his plans for the future of the project. As well as those that were not accomplished due to the COVID19 pandemic.
“We had plans last 2020 in Batanes, Mindoro, and Palawan but a pandemic struck. we never got to do it. But we have started shipping backpacks and school supplies to Itbayat, Batanes. We also partnered with BOOKS for the BARRIOS by shipping four balikbayan boxes with reading books to Mindoro and Dumaguete. And three balikbayan boxes of reading books to Itbayat, Batanes as well.”
Joffer hopes for a better future for the charity despite the pandemic.
“We are hoping that we can do this personally when permitted to start traveling again. Our goal with our outreach is to do it three times a year in the Philippines. We also have plans of expanding our program to the kids in Africa. I’m optimistic that things will get better soon.”
Acceptance and self-love is the key for those who aspire to be a drag queen
“The desire to be one is there. You need to put your heart into this. The earlier you take this on the better. I came out as gay in my late 30’s and started my drag in my 40’s but it never stops me from doing what I want and what I loved and makes me happy. These days, the younger generation has more options in the drag world or just being gay in general. People are more accepting nowadays and there are more ways of expressing themselves.”
Joffer Palmares a.k.a. Lady P. Galore wants the LGBTQIA+ community to know,
“Life is short. Embrace and love yourself. Be kind and spread positivity. Be who you are. You will be discriminated against and failed but don’t stop doing what makes you happy. You write your own destiny. Happy pride.”
Lady P. Galore is such an inspiration to the community all around the world. I admire her so much, especially after writing this article. I got to know who she is and who Joffer Palmares is. She is not just stunning—with her gowns, glamorous makeup, stylistic wigs, and breathtaking photoshoots. She also cares for those in need—both for the means of living, and also a little push to embrace their true selves.
PRIDE is not just about expressing who you are, but also to let our brothers and sisters within the community know that we are here for each other. Lady P. Galore is a testament to that.
You can reach out and donate to the project, Backpack for the Future through their Instagram (@backpack_for_the_future).
Rapha is a person born between the generations of Millenial and Gen Z. He was produced by Cavite State University (Main Campus) with a bachelor's degree in Political Science. The lad has a fresh take on things, but can still stay true to his roots. He writes anything in Pop Culture as long as it suits his taste (if it doesn't, it's for work). He loves to wander around the cosmos and comes back with a story to publish.