8 Iconic Black Women Who Taught Us Black Is Beautiful (Happy Women's History Month!)

8 Iconic Black Women Who Taught Us Black Is Beautiful (Happy Women’s History Month!)

It’s been a long uphill climb for women and an especially burdensome one for black women.  The beaten that we’ve often taken blazing our own trails has left our self-esteem and self-images quite battered and bruised.  Which is why we have celebrated,  and continue to celebrate, those famous black female figures that we do so fiercely.  They taught their generations, and all those that followed, that black was, and always will be, beautiful.

So in honor of National Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating eight great black women in movies, music, modeling, and social movements,  who taught us to love ourselves through their own strength, beauty, and undeniably fabulous styles.


Eartha Kitt

Eartha’s Advice: “Just because you are different does not mean that you have to be rejected.”

Source, Photo

Angela Davis

Angela’s Advice:  “To understand how any society functions you must understand the relationship between the men and the women.”

Source, Photo

Diana Ross

Diana’s Advice:  “You can’t just sit there and wait for people to give you that golden dream. You’ve got to get out there and make it happen for yourself.”

Source, Photo

Grace Jones

Grace’s Advice:  “Everyone has to make their own decisions. I still believe in that. You just have to be able to accept the consequences without complaining.”

Source, Photo

Pam Grier

Pam On Beauty:  “I grew up in a family where we weren’t allowed to talk about beauty or to put any emphasis on physical appearance.”

Source, Photo

Beverly Johnson

On Modeling:  “I’m not the biggest black model [in the world].  I’m the biggest model.”

Source, Photo

Oprah Winfrey


Oprah’s Advice:  “Excellence is the best deterrent to racism or sexism.”

Source, Photo

Alek Wek

On Beauty: “Beauty is deeper than just what you look at in a picture.”

Source, Photo

  • Liliah

    Don’t think Diana Ross should be on this list..

  • Liliah

    Don’t think Diana Ross should be on this list..

    • Mic

      But she is and you can hate all you want, but she is here and here to stay.  

      • mimerah

        Uhh nobody is hating – Chill out. 

      •  is it hating just because we may disagree? we all grown right?

        • Evidently we all are not.

    • Ptolemy

      Uh…what is really your problem with Diana Ross. She’s a surviving deity in a fledgling field of talent that simply doesn’t endure. She earned her place here and from my knowledge…raised those kids right and out of the drama spotlight. Yes, she’s had her hardships and moments but she did it with grace. So you call her Miss Ross because you don’t know her contributions to the plight of the beauty of being BLACK, Female and secular at a time when Beetle mania was all the range. 

      • justsayinthisnthat

        Um, I dont remember Diana being black out loud….or being a culturally identifiable stalwart of Black beauty and or feminism. I think that is where the uneasyness with diana lies. Surviving deity?? lol…-__-. Her voice is cool, but dreamgirls was written for a reason i kinda think. If for nothing, i rose my eyebrow when i saw diana ross on this list as well…and i think the fact that that emotion was justified bout 10x over may say a little something. Shes great, but maybe not for this list.

    • KM320

      Well, I have to admit, I was thinking the same thing about Diana Ross.  Didn’t she lighten her skin?  The article is about women who showed that being black is beautiful.  Now, if you were to say her tenacity and strength is beautiful, I would totally agree; but it seems as if she was very interested in doing whatever she could (appearance wise) to assimilate to European’s ideas of beauty.  But it’s a great and uplifting list though!!

    • Tkn

      I agree with you.

    • mubarek

      I don’t think Ross should be on this list either.

  • Grace Jones & Beverly Johnson, at least with the quotes they gave.  All of them are beautiful women, inside and out.

  • Papillon

    I love Oprah’s quote.

  • Ptolemy

    Now, when you can go to a White House dinner in the 1960’s during the Johnson administration and speak up and out about the vietnam war…with Lady Bird Johnson giving you the evil eye. You have inner strength and courage. Yes, Eartha was blacklisted after her stance but she didn’t regret her voice or  opposition on the war. Tha’s courage in the face of adversity. 

  • Missb1023us

    Awesome.  I love it that the women date from the past to the current.  Each of them has had to overcome obstacles and I am sure will always have to do so in the world which we live in.

  • Billie Holiday, Maya Angelou, Janet Jackson <3 You forgot many. Lovely quotes though

  • That’s right Grace!!

  • Exactly Oprah!!

  • kayla

    I resent the title of this article. These women did not TEACH me that Black is Beautiful. I’ve always known. And I find it interesting that with all the rich shades of brown that is part of what makes Black beautiful, the pictures are in black and white

  • Gojaema

    The one and only Pearl Bailey!!!

  • sharon

    There should be more than 8..

  • Orpheus

    Grace Jones is amazing looking but the rest of these women would not
    stand out in a crowd of three so why are they being held up as icons of

    Why not show a young Whitney Houston, ie someone
    who was actually breathtakingly beautiful? Some of these woman may be admirable as people (though personally I cannot stand Angela Davis on any level) but most of them are really not ‘beautiful’ at all.

  • Carolina Sander

    Black is beautiful. I like to say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Try this new fake Ultrasound design from fakeababy. It will create an atmosphere of laughter in your gatherings and parties.

StyleBlazer is a fashion and beauty website dedicated to edgy, progressive, chic and globally-minded women. Topics covered on StyleBlazer include street style, trends, expert beauty advice, and industry news.