It’s time to celebrate some of the most incredible, iconic, and fearless women. These warriors are paving the way for positive, inclusive, progressive, and all-round badass change in the world. Here’s to the bright lights in the darkness, and the hope we all need right now.
One of my favourite inspirational women that you should definitely keep your eye on is podcaster, actress, creative, producer and overall badass human – Jameela Jamil. What she has done through her ‘I Weigh’ movement is revolutionary. Her weekly podcast of the same name features incredible guests each week who educate and entertain us while discussing incredible, diverse and fiercely important topics.
As a fearless woman, she is continuously striving to break the narrative against negative body image, while bringing to light so many issues that are facing us today. She talks so openly and bravely about her own mental health, her struggles with disordered eating, and even her choice to have an abortion as a younger woman. Currently residing in America, she is fighting tirelessly for abortion rights, and the need for a major reform when it comes to women’s health care. She is constantly and relentlessly keeping those in power accountable for their actions, while tackling meaningful and important topics online. One such topic is the awareness she has given to the devastating and needless murdering of women in Iran.
Jamil is unafraid to challenge various media publications when they ruthlessly scrutinise women’s bodies. She takes a hard stand against forcing unrealistic body expectations on everyday people for the sake of a trend. For all those reasons and more, I deem her one of the most incredible women to follow this year.
She has never claimed to be perfect, or the ultimate role model. But what she is, is unashamedly herself. And for that, she deserves our respect, and our attention.
Listen to Jameela’s wonderful podcast here:
Maisie Hill is a health practitioner and the author of Period Power. She has gained, *takes deep breath* a BSc in Chinese Medicine Acupuncture, which included a semester in the Neurology department of a Chinese hospital, multiple diplomas in Life Coaching, Reflexology, Aromatherapy, Massage, and the Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapy (ATMAT) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Paediatric Acupuncture. She has also studied at the Integrative Women’s Health Institute, the Red School, Nicole Jardim and Nurturing Birth. Aaaaand *deep breath*, describing herself as “a geek that always wants to learn more”, she is currently training as a nutritional therapist at the College of Naturopathic Medicine.
She is a literal superhero that uses that beautiful brain of hers to take on all things menstrual. Her podcast, “The Maisie Hill Experience”, is such an informative and vibrant listen, where she discusses all aspects of reproductive health. She so eloquently tells us how to better understand our bodies, and for those who menstruate, she helps us make sense of our individual menstrual cycle. She talks about the different hormones coursing through our bodies, their purpose, and how they affect us. Hill also talks about how a spike in oestrogen and testosterone can make us feel like we’re on top of the world. Yet the next day, when our hormone levels drop, we get that weird emotional shift making us more lethargic and sad. She talks about ovulation, conception, menopause, perimenopause and more. Nothing is off topic for Maisie Hill, who is so effortlessly breaking the bizarre shame that has been put on us around having periods.
She’s just great.
Check out her amazing website where you can learn about all things menstrual: https://www.maisiehill.com/
And her incredible podcast “The Maisie Hill Experience”
For those of you not on, or even familiar with, TikTok, don’t worry. I was also very late to the game. However, while I was scrolling through the main feed I came across the most joyous, kind, warm and loving person. An actual icon in the making – Dylan Mulvaney.
Trans rights activist, actress and content creator, Dylan exploded to fame after her “Days of Girlhood” videos went viral on TikTok, reaching over a billion views. In the videos, Dylan shares small snippets of her day-to-day life after coming out as a trans woman. Some include very jovial and sweet moments like her bright and dazzling outfits that show her silly and witty fun with fashion. Her smile is so infectious you can’t help
beaming yourself while watching her sort through her weekly shopping. She also has some of the most heart-wrenching, raw and honest videos about how she deals with the continuing prejudice against trans people, along with her own struggles with gender identity. She very recently posted a video where she divulged that she always keeps some tampons in her purse in case she runs into someone in the loo who needs one. An act so warm, generous and thoughtful that was so ruthlessly attacked online. But Dylan is so resilient and has battled back the naysayers, always striving for inclusivity and kindness. Personally, if I was offered a tampon by a beautiful trans woman in the loo, I would be elated. Because I always forget them. Always…
Bravely honest and beautifully daring, she shines a bright, warm light on her trans experience. Something I think is vital right now. At a time where trans rights are being questioned far too often, and the trans experience is so frequently and unfairly criticised, it is more important than ever to include such a strong and beautiful woman in this list. Dylan is a true force for good in this world and I urge you to give her a follow. You won’t regret it. She’s literally magic.
Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu
Dr Shola is a British-Nigerian political women’s right’s activist, author, New York attorney, Solicitor of England and Wales, and founder of the Women in Leadership Publication. She has taught intersectional feminism to countless female refugees and asylum seekers, and is a powerful voice in challenging governmental policy to reflect diversity and inclusion. She is also the co-organiser of countless women’s marches and campaigns, and her work focuses on “driving positive change on topical issues that impact women globally through inspiring personal leadership journeys”.
Dr Shola also founded She@LawTalks, an organisation that focuses on women and BAME leadership in the legal profession through secondary and university education. She has an Executive MBA from the University of Cambridge, a PhD from Birkbeck, an LLM from the London School of Economics & Political Science, an MA from the University of Westminster, and an LLB Hons from Buckingham University. I think it’s safe to say that Dr Shola is a force to be reckoned with.
She has appeared on many television networks and news outlets discussing in detail race theory, women’s rights issues, immigration, and more. She works tirelessly to hold those in charge accountable for their actions to build a better, fairer world for us all.
Her new book – This is Why I Resist: Don’t Define My Black Identity – has been called “a timely and urgent call to anti-racist action”. It tackles the battle against racism and inequality people of colour, and more specifically black people, face each day. Along with the crucial importance of white people educating themselves on the blistering injustices of the black experience, she digs down into the roots of racism both in the UK and US, and how racism manifests in our day-to-day lives. She shines a light on a history of white supremacy and oppression in an attempt to create real, meaningful, positive change for us all.
In this incredible read, Mos-Shogbamimu writes that “this book is a declaration that the Black identity will no longer be defined by a prejudiced mindset steeped in institutional racism that enforces White supremacy. It’s time for us all to take anti-racist action…It’s time for a conscious revolution.”
Dr Shola is a true inspiration and educator, who deserves a great deal of thanks for her relentless work and kindness.
For more wonderful lessons, give her Instagram a follow here: https://www.instagram.com/sholamos1
5. Lauren “Lolo” Spencer
Actress, model, influencer, advocate, Indie Spirit Award Nominee, and all around great human, Lauren “Lolo” Spencer is best known for portraying wickedly witty sex positive Jocelyn in “The Sex Lives of College Girls”, currently in its second season on HBO Max.
Lauren was diagnosed with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig’s disease) at just 14 years old, after noticing her muscles were beginning to significantly weaken to the point where her arms would completely drop. By the age of 19, Lauren was using a wheelchair. A sad reality for people with ALS is that due to the fact the disease moves quickly around the body, they typically only survive for around 7 years after initial diagnosis. Well, it’s safe to say there’s nothing typical about Lauren, who has been living with ALS for over 18 years!
Lauren is quickly becoming a key voice for disability awareness, and is determined to change the way the world perceives the disabled community. She uses her platform on Instagram and YouTube to share snippets of her life, consciously trying to re-work the narrative that is continuously thrust on disabled people and wheelchair users.
She frequently talks about the lack of substantial roles for disabled actors within the creative industry, noticing that most roles for disabled actors are centred around illness which is such a restrictive bracket to be thrown into. I personally think she would play a great badass supervillain. Because, why not?! Are you listening, Marvel? Spencer shows the world that women come in a variety of shapes, sizes and abilities, so why waste time listening to nonsense societal prejudices? And I am here for it, Lolo!
She is the founder and CEO of Live Solo, a lifestyle brand dedicated to young adults
with disabilities who seek independence & self-empowerment. She also runs an incredible and informative YouTube channel where she discusses a varied array of topics with her audience, and shares a heap of helpful tips when it comes to living in an ableist world.
Lauren is a glowing force in this world, who is working as hard as she can to just be seen as human. Not to mention she is an incredibly beautiful woman inside and out, who is working hard for change.
Watch. This. Space.
Check out Live Solo’s website here: https://livesolo.co/
Check out Lauren’s instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/itslololove/?hl=en
Take a look at her YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/@SittingPrettyLolo
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