From Zoë to Kelly: 10 Female Celebrities on the Women They Admire Most

Updated 03/08/19

In our current aesthetic-obsessed world, it’s easier than ever to let insecurity, jealousy, or even animosity get the best of us—especially when we’re bombarded with never-ending images of other people’s success on a daily basis (thanks, Instagram). And don’t even get us started on the celebrity news cycle, which mostly thrives on pitting women against one another. (Think of it this way: When was the last time you ever saw a headline declaring two male celebrities in a supposed “feud”?) That’s why it’s worth noting when influential, empowered women in Hollywood vocalize their genuine admiration for other women—which, luckily, is something we have no shortage of these days.

In honor of International Women’s Day, we’re spotlighting all the female celebrities we’ve interviewed over the years who have openly praised, complimented, and even gushed about the one badass female they admire most (or just the one they admire from afar—nice to know we're not the only ones #creeping). Whether it’s Nina Dobrev and Ruby Rose hyping each other up via a transatlantic phone call, or Zoë Kravitz waxing poetic about her admiration for Reese Witherspoon, all of these women are living, breathing embodiments of the concept that other people's success aren't your failures—they can (and should) be your successes, too. To which we leave you with this profound takeaway: why hate when you can hype? 

Keep scrolling for 10 inspiring instances of women lifting up other women. 

Zoe Kravtiz
Emily Soto

Zoë Kravtiz on Reese Witherspoon: "[She] is doing so much in terms of business and family and producing and writing. She just never stops, and yet she still loves it and has a smile on her face and takes great care of her family and is a great friend. … She’s someone who is able to really balance all of that, and it’s amazing.”

Nina and Ruby
@nina / Instagram

Nina Dobrev on Ruby Rose, Julianne Hough, Riawna Capri and her mom: "The women who are around me who I know well inspire me because I know their flaws, and I know they’re just like mine. And I know that they have good days and bad days, but they are still strong and beautiful. All of our experiences separately and together make us so much stronger, and that inspires me.

[What inspires me most about my mom is] how full of life she is, how present she is. So much so that it’s annoying because she’s never on time, because she’s constantly stopping and talking to strangers and looking and appreciating everything around her, which is so beautiful and amazing, and I love that about her. It grounds me too. I need to stop and appreciate things more, and she needs to stop appreciating things and be on time more."

Hailey Bieber
Steve and Anne Truppe

Hailey Bieber on Gisele Bundchen: "She's so nice! You'd think, she has this statuesque, tall, beautiful body. She's this incredibly beautiful woman, and then you have a conversation with her, and she's so interested in what you have to say. It's just so sweet. I love her, and I don't even really know her. I sound like a creep. But she's so, so nice."

Shonda Rhimes
Getty Images

Shonda Rimes on Oprah"I have spent a lot of time sitting in big rooms full of a lot of men and executives thinking, What would Oprah say right now? and trying to channel that as hard as I could. And mostly that was just about having the confidence." 

Madeleine
Paley Fairman

Madeleine Petsch on Zendaya: "My number one role model is definitely Zendaya. She sets such a great example of how to conduct yourself as a celebrity. She’s so young and she’s so graceful and so poised and still so real. I’ve never even met her, but I follow her on social media and see the way she handles things and how she uses her platform for more than just posting pictures of herself. She really utilizes her platform to spread good and to spread words. I think that’s so incredibly important."

Ashley Olsen
Getty Images

Ashley Olsen on Lauren Hutton: "“My beauty icon has always been Lauren Hutton. It’s just everything that she represents as a woman. It’s her beauty, inside and out. She’s an incredible woman who’s lived an amazing life, and I think it really shows in her spirit and the way in which she presents herself.” 

Pom
Guy Lowndes

Pom Kelmentieff on Tilda Swinton: “She just has an aura. I remember sitting next to her at an Acne [fashion] show years ago, and compared to her, I felt so boring.”

Kat
Olivia Malone

Kat Dennings on Rachel Weisz: "I love Rachel Weisz. I think she is an incredible beauty, and I creepily look up what’s she wearing and bask in her gorgeousness."

Kaia
Nick Hudson

Kaia Gerber on her mom, Cindy Crawford: "I’ve always looked up to her in the way that she hasn’t let anything in the business affect her. In my eyes, she’s the coolest, nicest person in the world. And I understand that she’s ‘my mom,’ but we’ve actually become really good friends. As I get older, we get closer, so I haven’t really experienced that teenage angst against my parents, which I’m glad about. There are definitely days where I’m like, ‘Ugh, okay, Mom.’ But I won’t lie: We’re pretty close, and I’ve always wanted to be just like her.'"

Kelly
@kellyrowland

Kelly Rowland on Marsai Martin: "One of my favorite people to look at now is actually Marsai Martin from Black-ish.  She's actually my beauty muse. I'm literally, oh my God, what is she gonna do next? Okay, I’m going to try pinker cheeks today. She’s made me want to go lighter with my makeup even though I am older. I don’t know, it’s just something about her that is just a light, and she’s so special. I actually told her that the other day on Instagram how beautiful she is, and I hope she truly knows that. She's so amazing to me."

Custom Graphic of Women
Byrdie

Related Stories