9 Inspiring Black Women Leading The Wellness Movement

By Branche Foston

The mirror will always be more important than the window. Rather than looking out, and seeing others, the mirror allows you to see yourself. We're elated to share nine incredible Black women and mirrors-in-media who are owning the digital space and serving as an incredible reflection of (black) womanhood well-lived. With the wellness industry growing faster than ever, it does still lack a lot of inclusion and diversity. It's been incredibly exciting to see so many women of color, especially Black women, rising up and opening the door to provide access to wellness for ALL. Below, you'll find women who are making major waves for millennial Black women in celebration of #BlackGirlMagic within the digital media space, print magazines, wellness, astrology and more.

Lauren Ash has pioneered black women centered wellness in mainstream digital media. She is the founder and visionary behind Black Girl in Om, a community that promotes holistic wellness and inner beauty for women of color through their podcast, publication and growing Instagram following of 70K+. On top of this, Lauren continues to teach yoga, meditation, host retreats, collaborate with Nike as a Nike trainer, sit on the board of SXSW as a wellness advisory member, and is named in 2018's Create & Cultivate 100 list of 2018. Lauren is creating a safe space where women of color can close their eyes and feel surrounded by sisters, follow @blackgirlinom and @hellolaurenash.

A post shared by Maya Washington (@mayasworld) on

"Shameless" Maya Washington is a talented and driven Creative Producer and YouTube Influencer putting self-love & self-esteem on the map. With over 1 million subscribers, she has an incredible way of connecting with and empowering you to be yourself, or as she says, "do you, boo." Maya's channel is ultra-special, showing how multi-faceted black women can be. In one sweep, she's sharing her latest beauty tutorial, in the next, her extensive expertise in her tech and production. Maya started her career as a "social experiment" and has since grown it to a full-force #BeShameless movement & production company, having already achieved many jaw-dropping opportunities, like hosting BET's red carpet in 2016 and interviewing Hillary Clinton during her presidential campaign. This rising star is shining brighter than ever with a powerful message for all of us girls. Follow Maya on Instagram @mayasworld & dive into her channel at here.

A post shared by Dossé-Via (@dossevia) on

Dossé-via is the creator and CEO of two extremely popular astrology Instagram accounts @scorpiomystique and @knowthezodiac, where she has 170K followers combined. Between a full-time modeling career and motherhood, Dossé-via still finds time to share her passion for astrology in an authentic, powerful way. In addition to growing newer sign-specific accounts, (shoutout to @knowvirgo!) the mystic mogul has just launched an astrology podcast so you can get another dose of what's written in the stars. Her accounts are as concise as they are intuitive, giving all of us an opportunity to know more about ourselves and grow daily. But that kind of success is just what happens when you love what you do, and share your best self with the world. Follow @dossevia for her personal journey and @knowthezodiac for all-things-astro (and to learn more about your specific sign)!

Best friends and registered dietitians, Wendy and Jess, bring the power of sisterhood and their passion for nutrition to your everyday life with "Food Heaven". Food Heaven has you covered in just about every area: a comprehensive website with tons of resources and guides to healthy eating, a weekly podcast filled with lifestyle tips & expert interviews, and a YouTube channel with over 40K subscribers, all dedicated to the most creative (and prettiest) recipes you could imagine. It's so powerful to see two highly educated Black women (they're stacked with degrees) who not only love nutrition, but have dedicated their work to sharing and supporting all of us in making the healthiest diet choices possible. Named one of "26 Women of Color Changing The Face of Wellness" by Thoughtfully Mag and featured in countless publications from Essence, SELF, and Buzzfeed to Glamour, Nylon and BET, for Wendy and Jess, the world of nutrition education is theirs for the taking. Follow them on Instagram over at @foodheavenshow.

A post shared by Lindsey Day (@lindseydayy) on

President, Co-Founder and Editor-In-Chief of CRWN Mag, Lindsey Day, brings what feels to be an art gallery of black womanhood to your fingertips. Her career has skyrocketed quickly, due to her authentic love and desire to see the Black woman honored and glorified in the purest form. CRWN is a breathtaking magazine dedicated to natural hair, and the women of color who wear it. Deeper than a beauty tutorial, CRWN Mag takes an extensive, stunning profile into the lives and styles of the women featured. Named one of "7 Black Innovators Who Are Impacting The World" by Huffington Post, what's most impressive about Lindsey's mag, is its authenticity. Stemming from her own genuine dedication to serving Black women, CRWN mag is completely self-funded, independent and stays true its mission. Follow Lindsey @lindseydayy and CRWN Mag @crwnmag.

Queen of minimalism and inspiration, Roe, of @brownkids, brings a much needed breath of fresh air to Instagram. Effortless, authentic and kind, Roe shares her little corner of the world in a major, impactful way. So much so, that over 17K people follow her adventures with her boyfriend Erin (who she shares the account with). Roe shares a lot about her minimalist lifestyle, and how Erin, who is also Black, helped inspire her to live this way. A life filled with more meaning and less material, an inspirational Black woman and coveted Black love, @brownkids feels like a dream come true. In addition to the beautiful photos, one of the most impressive aspects of Roe's page, is the way that she has built not just a following, but a community, showing us there definitely is a way to be deeply connected to the people you share your life with, you just have to be true enough to see it flourish. Roe led an incredible 10 day "Debt Diary" in which she focused on the interpersonal things that hold us back from getting rid of debt _—_once and for all. Powerful, humanizing and empowering, each day of the Debt Diary leads you through a series of prompts to check in with yourself, address your debt, and know that you can conquer it. From anecdotes and resources to screenshots of people sharing their response to her process, it's an unforgettable way to feel that life can be better, will be better, and you have the power to make it happen. And isn't that the point of wellness, after all? Find the debt diary and fall in love with Roe's sweet life @brownkids.

Brandie Gilliam is the founder of Thoughtfully Mag, a sustainable wellness and self-care print mag, often highlighting Black women (did you catch the Issue 9 cover of wellness babes @koyawebb and @glowmaven?!). Graceful, stunning and intentional, Thoughtfully beautifully provides the latest information, tips and products to live a more enhanced life. Thoughtfully has just celebrated its 10th issue and 3 year anniversary. In such a short time, it can now be found at Whole Foods Market, Barnes & Noble, Anthropologie & The Detox Market, to name a few. We're in awe of Brandie's success, passion and vision to bring the gorgeous art of diversity and wellness to every all communities. Be sure to follow Brandie on Instagram @BrandieGilliam and @Thoughtfullymag to catch the latest issue.

A post shared by Francheska (@heyfranhey) on

Francheska Medina, better known as "Hey Fran Hey", is your internet "cool big sister." Always ahead of the trend, Fran started her wellness YouTube channel six years ago, truly opening the door for curly-haired women of color to see themselves in a holistic way. Known best for her all natural beauty DIYs and mental/emotional wellness, Fran is an incredible force of nature, encouraging and highlighting all the ways to and benefits of taking care of yourself. Her wellness website, HeyFranHey.com, preceded her channel (launched in 2011), and still provides tons of holistic lifestyle wellness guides, tips, and discussions. She's grown her career and community even further with her wellness podcast, The Friend Zone, where she focuses on emotional hygiene along with her two male co-hosts. If she's not doing a wellness or podcast tour around the US, she's at her home in New York, taking great care and inspiring you to do so, too. Follow Fran @heyfranhey on Instagram and check out her YouTube channel.

Misty Copeland is The American Dream. In 2015, she became the first Black woman to be promoted to principal dancer in the American Ballet Theater within its 75 year history. Capturing all of our hearts, she not only is an incredible world-renowned dancer, but she's also gladly and truly accepted the responsibility of a role model. She's dedicated her career to being a true advocate for women and children of color. A true athlete, Misty represents the balance of strength and grace using her platform on social media to constantly share her voice. She even risked the success of her major endorsement and activewear line with Under Armour, when she spoke out against the brand's CEO praising President Trump. Misty's authored three books, including the wildly popular children's book, Firebird, and in 2016, received her own Barbie doll. "This is for the little brown girls", Misty shares in her memoir, "Life In Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina". We love Misty for her talent, her ambition, and her love for representing and encouraging Black girls that they, too, can be center stage. Follow Misty @mistyonpointe.