Top 13 Inspirational Women & Female-Led Businesses
Happy international women’s day my gorgeous queens,
I know IWD was March 8th, but we deserve to celebrate all month don’t you think?
We as women are such strong human beings, and for so many different reasons. We have fought for equal rights since the beginning of time with Emmeline Pankhurst paving the way for us all. Yes, we still get the occasional anti-feminist comment every so often but for how far we have come It really isn’t relevant. I really wanted to share a few of my favourite strong women with you this month from influencers to celebrities to badass women-run businesses that you all need in your life. Bear in mind they are in no particular order they are all as incredible as one another.
My 5 favourite Influencers:
1. Amy Dowden – my favourite Welsh Queen; she suffers like myself with Crohn’s Disease. Despite this Amy has not let this stop her from chasing her dreams and she is now one of the dancers on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’. She is such a big inspiration to all and proof that you can still live your dreams with a chronic illness. Amy has performed her heart out on stage and then been rushed to hospital the next day for a flare and still gets on with it. A true warrior. Amy is that one lady I wish I knew when I was first diagnosed and in hospital. She would have given me hope that my career was not over. You can watch her documentary ‘Strictly Amy, Crohns and Me’ on BBC iPlayer.
2. Danae Mercer – Danae is just a breath of fresh air. Honestly, I adore this woman. Danae has been breaking Instagram expectations and hitting it with some triggers we all need to see. Danae helps empower women when it comes to loving the skin you are in, real body acceptance and self-love. Danae post’s a lot of ‘Influencer’ tricks to show you not everything you see online is real. 10/10 from me. We all need a bit of Danae in our lives. You can find her on Instagram here.
3. Chidera Eggerue AKA The Slumflower –This queen right here has been an inspiration to me since she brought out ‘What a time to be alone’ a book that you all NEED. No word of a lie, this book, if you don’t have it yet you need to order it right now and watch how your life will change. Chidera screams women empowerment, from the get-go. What I really love about Chidera is she speaks her mind, and she holds her own, something a lot of people no matter how far in their self-love journey they have come still struggle and hold back to do. She remains authentic and does not change just to have an easier life or get her way. Chidera really does do what she writes with no façade about it. I read her book when going through a break-up and wow, it changed my life, I have never looked back and she has been a big inspiration for me on not caring about other people’s opinions, keeping my standards higher than high and making sure I am always number 1 in my life. This book is a game-changer, and this is the first book I recommend when anyone asks me for book recommendations. You can find Chidera on Instagram here.
4. Emily Nardini – Emily has been a friend of mine for quite some time. We had always known of one another but never became as close as we are now until my mis-diagnosis landed me fighting for my life. Emily is one of the most inspirational people I know and not just because she’s my friend, even if she wasn’t my friend my opinion would still remain the same. Emily is a domestic abuse survivor and the things she endured I wouldn’t wish on anybody. She turned her trauma into something beautiful – women empowerment photography. Emily’s work is stunning, and I am so lucky to have had the pleasure of working with her. Emily spends her time photographing women and empowering them through her work. She knows the female body and loves being able to photograph it while boosting her model’s confidence and capturing their beauty so raw and quirky. She is one photographer I strongly recommend every woman needs to see. Follow Emily here.
5. Laura Mathias – Laura is just amazing, and she has educated me so much on Alopecia awareness and her story is just so inspiring, she was diagnosed with Alopecia in her teens. Last year lockdown was hard for all of us, but for Laura lockdown really did push her to do something she did not think she would have done for a very long time. Laura took a big step in herself love journey and posted a picture of herself for the very first time on Instagram without her wig. This was such a huge step for her, and I cannot explain how proud I am of her, I know this wasn’t easy to do especially when you are allowing yourself to be so vulnerable on social media for the world to see. Laura now raises awareness and helps so many women of all ages come to terms and start to accept their Alopecia and to realise that just because you are a bald woman doesn’t mean you are not worthy or beautiful…GO SIS! Follow Laura here.
My favourite inspirational celebrity women:
1. Kim Kardashian – To those who have just read her name and thought ‘Why has Natalie chose her’ please continue reading to see why. I know Kim to some is like marmite, you either love her or hate her, but I honestly have so much respect for this woman. Kim decided to follow in her late father’s footsteps to become a criminal lawyer and she has already made HUGE changes. She has fought for prison reform and worked towards freeing inmates who have been on death row and in prison wrongly convicted. Her huge platform has managed to help these prisoners get the exposure they needed. Kim did not need to do this, she didn’t have to study and put in hard work and effort to make changes when she has been blessed with riches, but she does. Kim’s job funnily enough is something I really wanted to do if I had not chosen the performing arts roots. I really think she is amazing for the work she is doing to help save lives.
2. Paris Hilton – Another one you may be questioning, but after watching her documentary on YouTube my whole opinion on Paris changed. I really do admire her strength and I think she is just so mis-understood. Paris sadly was abused in her teens whilst attending the Provo Canyon School. Her testimony helped pass a bill that will increase oversight for profit-residential treatment centers. Paris is truly brave, she used her platform to raise awareness for this, which also helped others to come forward and share their stories. Again, another woman using her platform for good.
3. Beyonce – Okay, if I didn’t have Queen B on this list there would be a problem. Not only is she just the ‘Queen of all Queens’ but Bey also has a foundation called ‘BeyGood’. Beygood has teamed up with brands such as Adidas and Bread of life which is a Houston based disaster relief organisation to offer financial assistance of up to $1,000 to families and individuals that were impacted by the deep freeze. Of course, this isn’t the only thing – she also donated $10,000 to a Bakery owner as part of their continuous efforts of helping small black-owned business owners across the country. Honestly, the list is endless, and I would be here all day listening to the amount of Good work this Queen has done.
4. Michelle Obama – The best first lady that ever lived in my eyes. Michelle is on my list for many reasons. She is proof that you should never give up regardless of what anyone tries to tell you. Michelle was told at a young age she would not get into Princeton because she wasn’t ‘Princeton Material’ and guess what- she did! Michelle has served as such a big role model for all women and worked as an advocate for many things including, Poverty awareness and education. Michelle also created the ‘Let’s Move’ programme which aimed to reduce child obesity and encourage a healthy lifestyle for children in America. If you have not yet read her book ‘Becoming’ then add it to your list.
My favourite women-owned businesses:
1. In ‘A’ Sea Shell – Founded by two gorgeous babes Leigh-Anne Pinnock & Gabrielle Urqhart. In ‘A Sea Shell’ is a luxury swimwear brand with the most gorgeous bikini’s. Honestly, they are all so flattering and Gabby & Leigh-Anne have both made sure that all pieces are flattering for every-body shape. What I love about this brand is not only are all their pieces unique but both queens stand strong with having real bodies and all shapes represent them. They are so diverse, and they are literally putting a middle finger up to typical beauty standards and paving the way and breaking stigmas with no ‘F’s’ giving. OBSESSED!.
2. Savage X Fenty – What would a women empowerment blog be without a bit of Bad Girl Ri Ri? Again, Rihanna is out here using all bodies to showcase and represent her badass lingerie and I am here for it! Her recent fashion show really did make heads turns, with all different body shapes from both men and women Ri is making sure she makes a statement that is not forgotten. Take a look here.
3. Models of Diversity – Model of Diversity is a charity run by two amazing ladies, Angel & Marie. These two queens have dedicated their time to helping people like myself get more representation and recognition in the modelling and fashion world. I love everything these women stand for and how passionate they are about making big changes in the industry when it comes to everyone being represented.
4. Boucléme – For us curly girls. Michele Scott-Lynch founded Boucléme for all of us curly girls out there. Michele has worked hard on making sure all her products are free from any nasty’s and that they help all of us curly girls feel as empowered about our hair as she does. I had the pleasure of being one of Michele’s first hair models when she first started out and I am honoured. If you are a curly girl reading this and in need of new products – I can assure you with Boucléme you won’t be disappointed.
I hope that my top picks in this month’s blog have inspired you to continue reaching for the stars and realising how powerful you are. QUEENS! Until next month. I personally celebrated WID with my own video montage of strong black women, you can watch it here.
Follow Natalie-Amber on Instagram here.