It feels like every other day, we’re debating over photoshopped thigh-gaps, Miley’s latest antics or the most recent high school bullying incident. I gotta ask–where is the love (heyyyy JT)? We spend so much time focusing on what women are doing wrong instead of focusing on all the women who are doing it so, so right.
As I’ve grown older, I’ve moved away from idolizing the queens of my youth (i.e. B*Witched, S Club 7 and Mia Hamm) and have found a posse of admirable women doing amazing things in our world today. Allow me to introduce you (from left to right, of course).
Sophia is a relatively new women-crush acquisition for me. I first heard of her through work and have been slightly obsessed with her story/business savvy ever since. Amoruso started Nasty Gal as an eBay store specializing in vintage items and quickly catapulted it to an independent company worth over $100 million dollars in just a few short years. If her special brand of rebellious smarts isn’t enough, she’s also an author of #GIRLBOSS, out this May. I love this video of her filmed by Forbes–it gives such a great idea of what she’s all about.
Ah, what to say about Amy Odell. Frankly, I think she’s genius and she’s such a workplace crush of mine. Odell started at The Cut (she was one of the first to helm the blog), then took her social strategy over to BuzzFeed, where she helped launch their women’s interest content. Now she’s making waves at Cosmopolitan Magazine as head of their site and I pretty much social media-stalk her at least once a day. As someone who also works in media, I’m always trying to keep up with what Odell is up to–she’s on the cutting edge of the business and is doing amazing things. (p.s. Check out her 8 tips for digital media supremacy).
You may remember Emily as the uppity intern from The Hills (and hey, even then you had to admire her work ethic), but the native New Yorker has transformed her 15 minutes of fame into one of the industry’s most respected beauty sites, Into the Gloss. As a blogger, I love keeping tabs on all the amazing things going on in the industry, and Into the Gloss has been one of my favorite brands since it’s inception. Not only does Emily (and her entire staff of writers) have such an amazing voice, but the site’s pieces are always unique, and I’m constantly walking away having learned something–rare in an online world dominated by regurgitated, repurposed content. She started Into the Gloss while she was still an assistant at Conde Nast, which is (obviously) something I can relate to–the long hours and sheer manpower you pour into a passion project can be overwhelming but it absolutely paid off in her case. Plus, I’m coveting her platinum blonde bob. I want it.
There’s not a ton to say about Malala that hasn’t already been lauded–I mean, she’s so incredible. I read her book earlier this year (I Am Malala, for those who haven’t heard of it) and was immediately struck by how poised, intelligent and full of grace she is. I think the work she does as an advocate for girls (and women) with The Malala Fund is so incredibly important–I know we’ll be seeing a lot of remarkable changes stem from her over the next decade. I can’t wait.
You guys–I completely and utterly adore Mindy Kaling (I even wrote her a letter). Ever since her days as Kelly Kapoor on The Office, I’ve found her hilarious, witty and full of charm. Besides the fact that I think she’s a fantastic comedic actress, she holds a title even closer to my heart–writer. The episodes she penned held some of my top Office moments, her book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? had me laughing out loud on the train and her namesake show, The Mindy Project, is my current TV favorite (um, can we TALK ABOUT MINDY AND DANNY FOR A MINUTE PELASE?! There is nothing I love more than an angsty you’re-the-love-of-my-life-but-I-can’t-be-with-you storyline. I just want them together). Past all that rom-com goodness, I feel like she’s exactly the kind of role model we need in the world these days–confident, secure, intelligent and happy. Love love love her (Mindy, if you’re reading this…let’s be best friends).
Have I ever told you guys I do a really, really convincing Julia Child impression? Because I do–seriously, it’s spot on…probably because I’ve spent much of my cooking life obsessing over her. Julia Child got women in the kitchen for pleasure, not necessity, and really brought it to a whole new generation to enjoy. I have a print with a quote of hers hanging in my kitchen (“People who love to eat are the best people”) and I find myself smiling at it often–it’s just so true! I have a feeling Julia and I would have been quite the duo in the kitchen.
I recognize that people can fall on either side of the fence with Lena–either you love her and completely relate to her, or you can’t stand her and what she speaks to. I fall firmly on the “love” side of the fence. Do I always relate to GIRLS? No, I don’t. But I think she’s brilliant and truly, the voice of a generation (ha sorry–had to). I think any time we have a woman like her in a leadership role, helming her own show, controlling the narrative and calling the shots, it’s a win for everyone. Personally, I can’t wait to get a hold of her new book, Not That Kind of Girl, coming out this fall. As much as I like Lena the actress and personality, I’m way more interested in Lena the person, Lena the business woman and Lena the writer.
So this may just be an industry crush and a snooze for all the rest of you, but Joanna Coles is a big, big thing in the magazine world. The EIC, who recently graced the cover of Adweek with the massive coverline “JOANNA COLES KNOWS WOMEN,” took over the big office up at Cosmopolitan earlier this year and has completely transformed the magazine from sultry fluff to an intelligent read women can be proud to whip out on the subway. Before Cosmo, Coles headed up Marie Claire, another favorite of mine for their “think” pieces on women’s issues. I have to agree with Adweek–Joanna Coles does know women, and she’s one women I (and many people in my industry) are looking to learn from.
Gabby Bernstein is everything I want be: relaxed, sure, zen and thoughtful. I first heard of her through my roommate and have since gotten hooked on her inspirational Instagram feed, videos and new book, Miracles Now. She is a motivational speaker and meditation teacher that focuses a lot on energy, the power of thought and positive emotions–introspective stuff that’s maybe not for everybody, but her accessible mindset has really helped me find a mental calm (or ok, helped me try and find a mental calm) in the past few months. I’m dying to hear her speak live–if you’re looking for a Gabby intro-lesson, I suggest this video or this video!