15 Entertainers Who Are Changing Hollywood’s Standard Of Beauty

January 14, 2014  |  
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Once upon a time, the red carpet was a monotone place that only celebrated one type of beauty. But today, Hollywood is embracing diversity of all colors thanks to the pioneering work of some of our favorite entertainers. Shouts out to these women who are changing Hollywood’s standard of beauty one red carpet at a time.

Lupita Nyong’o

If someone told you a chocolate Kenyan woman with a short afro was going to be the talk of the town during the 2014 awards season and covering the top fashion magazines in the US, you wouldn’t have believed it. And yet, here we are.

Queen Latifah

Our favorite ’round the way girl told “Good Housekeeping” that the key to blazing a trail in Hollywood was learning to love yourself:

“When I was around 18, I looked in the mirror and said, You’re either going to love yourself or hate yourself. And I decided to love myself. That changed a lot of things.”

Janelle Monae

Sex appeal isn’t all about skin. We love the way Janelle’s funky look sets a new standard for keeping it classy.

Gabourey Sidibe

It’s been a lot of fun watching this 30-year-old actress blossom into a talent that Hollywood has to respect (even though they didn’t resurrect her character on “American Horror Story: Coven.” But Gabourey says that being a pioneer in Hollywood isn’t always easy:

“I have to keep going and living my life, so when things like that upset me I have to find things that build my confidence back up. Because I don’t want to wait for work I want to make work.”

Danai Gurira

Michonne’s debut on “The Walking Dead” was a breath of fresh air for a lot of sisters. The 35-year-old Zimbabwean-American’s character is reminding audiences that there’s more than one definition of femininity.

Sasheer Zamata

There’s a new black comedienne on SNL and she rocks a natural? Now that’s something to celebrate.

Maya Rudolph

Speaking of SNL cast members, Maya Rudolph has been paving roads for new roles for black women for some time now. Not every beauty has to be a sex symbol — especially when they’re this funny.

Quvenzhane Wallis

We can’t stop being excited about all the little boys and girls who will have grown up seeing iconic Annie played by our favorite Beast of the Southern Wild.


We had to take it old school for just a minute to talk about Iman. Not only did this grand diva change the modeling industry’s standards of beauty, she changed the makeup game to offer one of the first lines of foundation for women of all colors.

Wanda Sykes

We love that funny woman Wanda Sykes represents for beauty that doesn’t necessarily follow a straight line.

Jasika Nicole

Jasika Nicole is one of our favorite sci-fi sisters. We love her quirky “Fringe” character, her curly pixie and her quirky look.

Willow Smith

The littlest Smith stays killing us with quirk and we love watching her trendsetting style evolve.

Erykah Badu

Baduism funked up everyone’s style with bright colors, head wraps, big glasses and big amber rings. Now she’s about to do the same with a fade.

Trae Harris

We love the way that the breakout star of Newlyweeds is bringing dreads back to the mainstream in a major way.

Amber Riley

Hollywood is a better place for curvy stars than it once was, but Amber knows we still haven’t worked out all the kinks:

“Hollywood is a very hard place to be in. It really is. Being the person I am, you know, the size I am, being a woman, being a black woman, there’s not a lot of roles for us.”

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