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Fifth Harmony Hiatus and Girl Power in Music

Following the announcement Monday morning of Fifth Harmony deciding to take a hiatus, I thought it was necessary to take a break and look at all of the love and inspiration that Fifth Harmony, and all of the modern girl groups have brought us.

Currently, we are in our fourth wave of feminism, and I am happy to say that women have never been more powerful and valued. Of course, us girls have always been, and still are intelligent, gorgeous and fierce, but sometimes we get our inspiration from fellow icons who live their lives to empower others. These four modern girl groups use their fame to make powerful anthems for us to rock out to, all while preaching about self-love, healthy relationships and the possibilities of what women can do.

Little Mix


In 2011, four girls auditioned for X Factor UK and were strategically thrown together to form one of the biggest girl groups from the United Kingdom. Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Jade Thirlwall have received a total of 27 music awards and have achieved top selling albums and hit singles.

These four girls tend to focus their songs on the heartbreak and happiness that comes along with relationships and spin it into anthems for total girl power all around the world. Their lyrics highlight and remind listeners that they have the will, strength and freedom to get up and leave your boyfriend/girlfriend if they are not treating you right.

Songs like “Power,” “Shout Out to My Ex,” “Salute” and “Wings” preach to fans to take every experience we have, good or bad, and let it make you smarter, stronger and even more beautiful. Don’t waste your time on people who don’t make a positive impact in your life and keep growing into the butterfly you are meant to be.




What could be cooler than being in a rock band? Being in a rock band with your actual sisters. Este, Danielle and Alana Haim formed their band HAIM in 2006 after spending their childhood writing and playing music together. Their rock-pop sound has a unique flare to it that attracts music lovers from all genres. The California trio is all about girl power and navigating life as women.

Even though women have been rocking out since the 1950s, rock music is typically seen as a male dominated industry that tends to stereotype and sexualize women rockers.

“I think people just need to change the verbiage and the way that they describe music and the way that they look at women in music.” Este told The Daily Beast in an interview from 2014. “I definitely felt growing up that I wasn’t an equal (in rock music) and I never understood why.”

Thriving in a male dominated industry, these three sisters know what it is like to be ridiculed and not taken seriously, just for being a woman. Yet, they have never let that stop them. Being huge role models for aspiring young female-rockers, these rock stars inspire people to dream big and never let anyone (including men) tell you that you can’t do something. 


Maddie and Tae


This country duo made it big in 2015 with their hit song, “Girl in a Country Song” which brought attention to how country songs about whistling at girls in bikini tops while they shake their ‘booties’ is kind of, well… rude.

“We wanted women to have the respect that they used to have,” Tae told TeenVogue in an interview in 2016. “The songs feel good, but what they were saying was degrading.”

The duo likes to write lyrics about encouraging young girls to follow their dreams as they go through the pressure of growing up. Songs like “Fly,” “Waitin’ on a Plane” and “Downside of Growing Up” all portray these emotions. These American sweethearts inspire young girls to keep following their dreams and to not let anyone tear down their innocent hearts. 


Fifth Harmony


Multi-platinum girl group Fifth Harmony are the perfect role models for girls all around the world. Despite the adversity they have faced in their careers, such as member Camila Cabello leaving in late 2016 and struggles with their label, Ally Brooke Hernandez, Dinah Jane Hansen, Lauren Jauregui and Normani Kordei have pushed through and thrived.

Now, after winning several awards and releasing three successful albums, Fifth Harmony use their platform as a girl group to show young girls how powerful they are. One of the most important messages they preach is that girls need to stick together and support other girls rather than tearing each other down. You can see these messages in songs like “BO$$,” “That’s My Girl” and “Brave Honest Beautiful.”

The girls released a statement Monday morning explaining how they have decided to go on hiatus. After six years of producing and performing music non-stop, they have chosen to take some time for themselves to gain new experiences as individuals. This is a really important message for women, especially in college, to be able to realize when you are working yourself too hard. I mean our 20’s are supposed to be our selfish years! Sometimes you need to take a step back and put yourself first to focus on a little self-love and improvement.

All four girls have admitted how hard it is to grow up in the music industry, and how they used each other to build themselves up. Group member Dinah Jane told reporters from Flaunt Magazine this past January that she feels her self-esteem is stronger than ever now and she tries her best to help others realize their beauty as well.

“I remember seeing this girl that had cuts on her arm,” Hansen told reporter Eva Barragan from Flaunt Magazine. “I remember distinctly noticing it, and I grabbed her arm and said ‘No more’.” When she came back to the next meet-and-greet, she had placed a tattoo over her scars that said those two words: ‘No more.’”


All of these girls have been big role models to young women everywhere and we can’t thank them enough. Fifth Harmony will be missed, but I am excited to see how each of them decide to express themselves as solo artists. But in the meantime I highly suggest jamming out to all of these fearless, feminist queens as they continue to empower women with their girl power anthems.

Mia Riddell

Illinois State '20

Mia Riddell is an aspiring magazine journalist at Illinois State University who is passionate about capturing details of people's lives with captivating writing and storytelling. She is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus ISU. Her interests include reading romance novels, listening to Harry Styles, writing anything and everything, volunteering whenever she can, and spending time with friends and family. Follow along Mia’s college journey and stay tuned for more articles!
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