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Lizzo X Essence Magazine

Source: Ramona Rosales / Ramona Rosales

Black women are winning, and Essence has the proof. For the Magazine’s December Issue, they speak to 3 dynamic women who go the extra mile to advocate for themselves, in an industry that doesn’t always prioritize their needs.

GRAMMY award-winning singer Lizzo; Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles; and “1619 Project” Founder Nikole Hannah-Jones were the perfect women to highlight in ESSENCE’s “The Year of Radical Self-Care” issue. These ladies have had to tap into their “no” a few times this year in order to prioritize their mental health. While society was critical of their decisions, Black women everywhere applauded their position and took notes on the importance of putting ourselves first.
Here are some highlights from the interview.
Simone Biles X Essence Magazine

Source: Chrisean Rose / Chrisean Rose

Biles on her decision to withdraw from the summer games this year:

“I definitely knew any stand I took would be a little bit bigger than itself,” Biles said in her cover story, “More Than A Medal.” “At the end of the day, we’re humans. We’re not just athletes. We’re not just here for entertainment.”
NIKOLE HANNAH-JONES X Essence Magazine

Source: Itaysha Jordan / Itaysha Jordan

Nikole Hannah-Jones, the Pulitzer Prize-winner who declined to accept tenure at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill months after they withdrew their initial offer, took an ultimate stand by proving she doesn’t have to settle.

“It was important for me to say no to UNC, for my dignity, my self-respect,” she says in her cover story, “When ‘NO’ Opens Doors.” “And then, outside of me, I needed to do it for Black people and marginalized people, for their dignity and respect, too.”

Lizzo X Essence Magazine

Source: Ramona Rosales / Ramona Rosales

Lizzo’s self-confidence has earned her the role as America’s Black body positive advocate. Whether she intended on this position or not, she had to develop very thick skin to deal with a high-level of scrutiny. In her cover story “Simply Being,” Lizzo talks about how draining it is to constantly be the focus of the body positive movement.

“It’s exhausting,” Lizzo admits. “And that’s the point. I don’t want to talk about this anymore. We should be neutral about bodies.”

On another note, this issue is proof of the magic that can happen when Black celebrities choose Black publications to tell their story. Can we take a moment to gawk over these images? From hair, makeup and styling to the the compelling story that implores Black women to remember their worth, this issue proves that Black media is committed to uplifting their people.

Simone Biles X Essence Magazine

Source: Chrisean Rose / Chrisean Rose

Lizzo X Essence Magazine

Source: Ramona Rosales / Ramona Rosales

NIKOLE HANNAH-JONES X Essence Magazine

Source: Itaysha Jordan / Itaysha Jordan

Read more at ESSENCE.com or pick up the November/December issue on newsstands during the holidays.

DON’T MISS…

ESSENCE Magazine Highlights Lizzo, Simone Biles, And Nikole Hannah-Jones For Their “Year Of Radical Self-Care” Issue  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com