BLACK GIRL MAGIC
" We are the women who marched from cotton fields into fields of medicine, entertainment, and the White House,"- Jada Pinkett-Smith.
The last few years has been quite crazy for the African American culture and the country and for with all that is going on in politics, injustices, cultural appropriation and the lack of inclusiveness. I was intrigued to do a post honoring some of the women exemplifying the meaning of “black girl magic”. These women continue to make a difference in our culture by breaking barriers that they aren’t expected too. These women are constantly using their platforms to make a difference and bring awareness to the issues in the world. Each of these women have inspired me so much because they are living their dreams and while helping those in need. They each have shown me that it is possible to be a successful black woman and inspire people.
We first seen Issa Rae in her web series Awkward Black on YouTube and now she produces and stars in her very own show Insecure on HBO. That is such a great accomplishment on its own. If you tune in to Insecure on Sunday nights you know that Issa touches on so many topics that women and men can relate too. On the hit HBO TV show we see Issa constantly celebrating the black culture with her infamous t-shirts saying things like “FBI Killed Fred Hampton” and “The Lasts Poets”. Issa always makes sure she is using her platform and television show to bring awareness to issues in the black community on mainstream media. For that reason alone, she is a true example of black girl magic!!
It’s so shocking that Yara is only 17 years old because of how wise and mature she is. Yara always brings awareness to the constant tragedies happening in our country. Yara stars on the ABC hit show Black-ish and is about to start her own television show Grown-ish. If you haven’t seen the show Blackish before it is all about cultural assimilation and creating a sense of ethnic identity for the members of the family. Yara has launched a young woman mentoring group Yara’s Club with Ann Tisch and has also received The Women in Entertainment Empowerment Network (WEEN) award all at such a young age. Yara is a great example to young girls and women. She celebrates being a young curly haired mixed black young woman in the entertainment business.
If you follow Zendaya on social media you know that she is always very expressive and passionate about her craft and is very knowledgeable about what is going on in the world. She has a huge voice in the women empowerment movement, black lives matter, black girls rock, racism and so much more. Zendaya isn’t afraid to say exactly what she feels is right. Zendaya inspires me because she she’s so young making major boss moves and staying true to herself.
If you don’t know Winnie Harlow you are truly missing out on such a beautiful person. Winnie is a Canadian fashion model that rose to fame after being on Tyra Bank’s hit reality television show, America’s Next Top Model. Winnie was diagnosed with skin condition Vitiligo at age four. She makes it her business to educate people on her skin condition and is a role model for other young girls that have the same condition. Winnie is such a powerhouse and an inspiration. She’s all about doing what you love and empowering women to have love their selves.
First seen as a competitor on Australia’s Next Top Model back in 2013, Thot is that unusual reality star who has made the jump to a successful high-fashion career. She is also the sister of famous YouTuber and model Nikki Perkins from Jaime and Nikki. Duckie has been recently seen in the Fenty Beauty ad campaign representing for dark skin women and has been seen in various runways and magazines like, Vogue Japan, Vogue Australia, BLVD Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar. Duckie continues to use her platform to show that dark skin women are beautiful and can be successful in the fashion industry.
The growth in the R&B artist Sza is undeniable. She has always been talented but with the release her album in June 2017, Ctrl, Sza has proven her amazing talent. She has a way with words and many girls feel that her music is so relatable. Sza is an artist that not only talks about love but wants to give power back to women. There has been major buzz around her hit single “The Weekend”. Many said that Sza was promoting that it is okay to be a side chick. Sza clarified that speculation in her latest interview with the World’s Most Dangerous Morning Show, The Breakfast Club. She said that the song is about women taking the power back and treating men exactly how they treat us. She is so open about her daily battle with self-love. I love that she owns her insecurities and is letting the world know that it is okay to embody those insecurities.
With Solange’s latest number one album A Seat at The Table, she truly embodies the term “Black Girl Magic”. Solange always has been true to herself and her work has shown that. She expresses herself through her music, ethic hairstyles and her timeless fashion sense. Solange inspires me so much because she stands out and sets her own trends. She continues to embody all things that black women bring to the world.
We all know Lala Anthony from the TRL days and have seen her grow so much. Lala has been a game changer ever since she’s been in the game. In her first book The Power Playbook she talks about her story and how she has risen to her great success. I’ve always had a love for Lala because she also is in the field of communications and because she has worked so hard by herself. Of course, she’s had help along the way but she truly put in hard work to get to where she is today. Lala is married to professional basketball player Carmelo Anthony and she mentions in her book that she didn’t just want to be a stay at home mom. She wanted to continue working on her career after she had her son Kiyan. I truly love that about her. She is a great example for independent women. Lala shows that you can be a wife, mother and have a career.
Most recently we’ve seen Lala in the hit television show Power aired on Starz. Lala has also just released a denim line with Lord & Taylor. She is the first Afro-Latina women to have a clothing collection with Lord & Taylor. Lala is also another person that uses her platform to the issues happening in our culture as well as constantly promoting the empowerment of women.
Teyana Taylor has been around for years but her talent is just now being noticed by many for some reason. I’ve always loves Teyana since her debut on MTV’s Sweet 16 television appearance. Her talents surprised me because of her tom boy style and ability to rap and her beautiful singing voice. Teyana’s style has transformed from tomboy to sexy chic. Kanye West had Teyana Taylor star in his video for the single “Fade” from his latest album The Life of Pablo and the media went crazy!!!! Teyana’s sexy dance routine in this video was amazing and unforgettable. Her amazing body and killer moves made everyone fall in love with her talent. Teyana has since started Fade2Fit, a movement that celebrates getting fit, graced the cover of GQ South Africa, performed at this year’s Essence Festival, has been featured on Vogue Magazine, received the Best Choreography Video Music Award for her performance in Kanye west’s “Fade” video, landing movie roles and most recently has walked in and closed various runway shows for New York Fashion Week. She is a true example of black girl magic for me because she has worked so hard and stayed consistent with her craft. Now today so many young women idolize curvy bodies and think that that is the only way you can be sexy. Teyana shows that her petite slim thick body is sexy as well and I appreciate her for that. All body types should be honored and she represents for those women very well. Teyana Taylor is a great example of a talented artist that was underrated and now is making moves while being a loving mother and wife.
About a year and a half ago we all seen Cardi B on Instagram working in the strip club in NYC and keeping us all laughing with her outspoken personality. Cardi B quickly gained thousands of followers and landed a contract with VH1’s Love and Hip-hop New York. On this show, we seen Cardi B flourish and introduce us to her passion of music. Cardi wasn’t taken serious for a while but she continued to work on her craft and prove people wrong. Now today Cardi B has over ten million followers on Instagram and has number one singles. Her song, “Bodak Yellow” continues to rise on the Billboard Hot 100, currently sitting at No. 3, marking the highest ranking by a female rap artist since Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” all the way back in 2014. Cardi B is a true inspiration and example of black girl magic because she is continued to perfect her craft although many people didn’t take her seriously because of her past. She has appeared on BET’s hit show Being Mary Jane, performed at Drake’s OVO Fest, graced the cover of Fader Magazine, performed at the Alexander Wang set for New York Fashion Week, has been nominated for BET Awards and continues to sell out shows. I am so happy to see her growth and I know there will be so much more.
If you are YouTube and beauty lover like myself then you know Jackie Aina. Since she started on YouTube she has made it her business to call out makeup brands out on their lack of inclusiveness for dark skin women. Jackie Aina now has over three million subscribers on YouTube and she continues to use her voice to bring awareness to this issue. You can count on Jackie to give honest reviews on popular makeup launches. She isn’t afraid to say how she feels no matter the backlash and that is why she is so respected in the beauty industry. Jackie we all appreciate you so much for all you do.
In the last two years or so I’ve been following Karen Civil on social media and have fell in love with how she has created her brand in hip-hop. Karen Civil is a social media and digital media marketing strategist that started her website in 2008 where her goal is to introduce the world to those up and coming in the industry. She was the first to feature artist like Drake, Nicki Minaj, and J.Cole. Civil has grown her website into the one stop shop for exclusive interviews with some of the most stylish, trendsetters, rappers, artist and entrepreneurs in the industry in a civil way. Karen has recently released a book “Be You, Be Civil”, where she discusses speaks on her personal experiences to reaching to success and unlocking your purpose in life and self-motivation. Karen’s success is so inspiring. With her passion of hip-hop and the entertainment business she has been able to create Live Civil Day, a basketball tournament, where she was able to help three children basketball organizations with the help of Adidas providing uniforms, sneakers, gym bags, practice attire. Beats by Dre also supplied Gatorade and Powerbeats. She was also a part of the #ImWithHer movement when Hilary Clinton was running for president in the 2017 election and was presented with the "Key to the City" and recognized for the work she does in the community of her hometown Elizabeth, NJ by Patricia Perkins-Auguste, councilwoman-at-large. Karen is doing what she loves and makes it her job to give back and that alone makes her a true example of Black Girl Magic!!
I think every girl loves Rihanna’s boss attitude, kick ass style and her killer work ethic. With all her success during her career she has found time to give back. In 2012 Rihanna founded The Clara Lionel Foundation (CLF) in honor of her grandparents, Clara and Lionel Braithwaite. CLF supports and funds revolutionary and effective education, health and emergency response programs around the world. With the help of Rihanna and her fans, CLF also engages in global advocacy with the goal of improving the quality of life for young people everywhere.
The current programs include the Clara Lionel Foundation Global Scholarship Program, the Clara Braithwaite Center for Oncology and Nuclear Medicine at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Barbados and the Barbados Micro Grants Program. Rihanna also always uses her platform to state her stand on issues like racism, police brutality, women empowerment and feminism. She is never afraid to give her opinion. Rihanna somehow masters anything she puts her hands on from fashion to beauty. She truly inspires us all. As you all know, she has recently released Fenty Beauty, her new cosmetics line providing 40 shades of foundation. She made sure that her line represents ALL women from every skin shade. I am very excited to see what she has in store for us next.
I couldn’t make a post about black girl magic without the queen, Beyonce. Beyonce inspires on a daily and continues to use her use platform as a voice for the black community. Beyonce's career has sky rocketed over the years and she has done so much to give back. Beyonce's BeyGood foundation aims to make the world a more beautiful place. Her new initiative is to raise money for the thousands in Nepal who were affected by the recent 7.8 magnitude earthquake. She has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to fight for gender equality worldwide, given school supplies to students across the nation and hosted food drives in Houston. She continues to promote the beauty of black women and the African american culture. She also promotes women empowerment and feminism. Beyoncé’s most recent album Lemonade was all about love, infidelity, intuition, anger, rage, redemption, black women's lives and losses. Beyonce woke a lot of people up with this album and continues to be a trailblazer in the entertainment field.
Viola Davis is a true queen indeed!! She is the only black women nominated for three Academy Awards, winning one, and is the only black actress to win the Triple Crown of Acting. In 2012 and 2017, she was listed by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. Viola is always using her platform to bring awareness to the misfortunates of the black community as well as the struggle women in the entertainment go thorough. She is a true powerhouse and is always doing her best to truly impact others.
Tracee Ellis Ross
Since Tracee has been in the entertainment business she has been constantly providing the world with great messages on the realities of the black community. In her classic hit show Girlfriends, she shed light on what black women deal with in their careers, relationships, friendships and self-love journey. Tracee also stars on ABC hit show Black-ish where she represents the mixed black wife and mother. This year Tracee received a Golden Globe award for Best Actress in a TV comedy for Black-ish and she gave an empowering speech for women of color.
Taraji P. Henson
Taraji has always been an inspiration and advocate of Black Girl Magic because she honors what it truly means to be a phenomenal black woman. Taraji is always empowering young women to do exactly what they want in life and to not let hard times stop them. She shares her story of being a young mother moving to California to start her dream with only $700 and her son. Her story is so inspiring and she is proof that if you work hard you can be all you want to be in life. Taraji has won and been nominated for many NAACP Awards, BET Awards and Golden Globe Awards.
Thank you guys so much for reading. Comment below who you think embodies #BLACKGIRLMAGIC!!! Be sure to subscribe for more :)