While there are a lot of arguments that exist out there painting social media in a bad light, I feel like apps on apps have done some amount of good for Gen Z. One very specific example is the rise of the elite league of women I like to call “New Age Oprahs” or “New Age Life Gurus.” If it weren’t for my access to Instagram and Twitter, I would not know about the good work some of these women are putting in and I would never have learned the lessons they have taught me. So, for those who have struggled to find social justice in social media, I’ve rounded up my personal favorite inspiring ladies.
- Cleo Wade
Known best for her successful book “Heart Talk,” Cleo Wade is spreading messages of love and positivity through her prose, art, and poetry. Proclaimed “The Millennial Oprah by New York Magazine, she constantly floods her social media with reminders for her followers that they are loved and deserving of anything they set their hearts on. Recently, she practiced what she preached like a proper boss, telling an Instagram troll that deemed her pregnancy unprofessional that she does not have to choose between being a working woman and a mother.
- Elaine Welteroth
Welteroth began her domination in 2016 when named editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue — which made her the second person African American heritage and the youngest to hold such a position at Conde Nast. She used her position to launch a platform centered on educating herself and others about politics and matters of social justice. Her memoir More Than Enough celebrates her own journey towards claiming her individuality, something she encourages her followers to do on her social platforms.
- Yara Shahidi
This actor doubling as an activist was born into the social justice aware spotlight with her first big role in Blackish, which touches on many issues like race and gender. As she’s gotten older, Shahidi has found herself most interested in voter activity, leading her to start “Eighteenx18” — a platform that encourages Gen Z to get out there and vote. The movement hosts a plethora of events, such as summits with young activists and political influencers.
- Tracee Ellis Ross
Yara’s on-screen mama also happens to be an uber-active and influential presence on social media. Her posts honor the beauty of all women, emphasizing the freedom to be an individual in every aspect of life. She also loves a good post about the success of others in her community, from a photo of her at Tyler Perry’s studio to having a dance party on her feed to the latest groove from her friend.
- Michelle Obama
It’s only fair that we mention the ultimate new age inspirational woman: Mrs. Michelle Obama herself. Where do we even begin to boast about this beautiful, intelligent being? One very true and overarching statement to be made is that she’s been putting in the work even after her term as First Lady. From publishing her uber-successful memoir Becoming — which reminded us to go high when they go low — to leading the Girls Opportunity Alliance in hopes of granting girls equal education, she is on a roll.