No one really knows what feminine energy means exactly, but one thing’s for sure — It’s provocative. So much so, that it provokes us to think about the women that have influenced us to aspire to be more. And so, we’re kicking off this Women’s History Month with introductions to women that embody the qualities we exalt.
Josefa Gomes- Raising one kid is challenging enough, but raising 5 is an undertaking no one prepares you for. Josefa, nicknamed Pipinha, is mother to Alzerina. Early on she set the foundation for the principles we uphold today. She is very keen on the concept of building your own personality. In other words, be yourself. Redefining what it means to be a “tough cookie” entails her never taking no for an answer. Pipinha is stern in the best way possible; An indication of an empowering woman.
Rosemarie Le Gallais- Rosemarie has done more than imaginable to keep Daniel Swarovski’s legacy alive. Known by many in France, her identity still manages to be kept under wraps to much of the world. However, her prowess as Swarovski’s directress is what stimulated Alzerina’s interest in jewelry design. Rosemarie is the very reason that many brands like Swarovski, Chloé, and the like have high elements of grandeur. With her in mind, we’ve adopted the belief that one can be impactful while maintaining a private life. Really, privacy is a prerequisite for significance.
Malala Yousafzai- We often take education for granted and forget that it’s not always accessible to young girls in many parts of the world. Malala’s willingness to lose her life over the availability to attend school brings tears to our eyes, but hope to our souls. With her life at stake, she confirms that a woman’s education is never something that should be taken lightly. If anything, it’s something worth dying over because an educated woman is a dangerous woman.
Cesária Évora- Not everyone reaches their peak earlier in life. Cesária is a testament to that. Throughout Cabo Verde, it is known that her career didn’t take off until she was in her 50s. Nonetheless, she became so renowned that she was one of the few artists that Carnegie Hall allowed to smoke mid-performance. Often, she was spotted walking through Cabo Verde barefoot, although she had the means to afford any shoe she could ever want. Now, we don’t say this to dirty her character. Instead, it’s mentioned to highlight how free-spirited she was. While she is the face of many of our escudos (Cape Verdean money), money failed to fascinate her. Still, after her death, Cesária motivates us to remain down to Earth.
Princess Diana- Deep down, Diana’s death still ails us. It’s very easy to get caught up in the glamorous aspects of aristocracy, but what we loved about this Princess is that she wasn’t afraid to confront the stigmatized. In fact, she openly shook hands with an AIDS patient at a time when it was believed the illness was spread through physical contact. Using her fame as a tool, rather than a birthright, Diana was able to raise millions of dollars for widespread charities. While her death is the basis for several conspiracy theories, it inspires us to be unapologetically altruistic.
Maya Angelou- From writing to activism, Maya encourages women everywhere to speak up in the face of injustice. She nudges us to remember that we are our best selves when we love ourselves. Her constant focus on the importance of inner change is what makes her a timeless figure in the push toward women's empowerment. Above all, what we admire most about Maya is her stress of accepting yourself no matter what life has thrown at you. Indeed, “We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.”
Naomi Osaka: The talented tennis player revealed her tumultuous relationship with anxiety and depression not too long ago. For women across all boards, there tends to be an expectancy for us to hide the depths of our feelings. Naomi refuses. That alone is a reason to love her. This transparency is admirable, for it asserts her humanity. Strength can be affirmed by openly acknowledging the things that trouble you. We’re here for the mental health discussion.
Joan of Arc- Brave is an understatement when describing this heroine. Her involvement in war paints her as one of the greatest martyrs to ever live. While her death is tragic and arguably avoidable, what we love is that she chose her fate with no remorse by affirming her beliefs. Like her, we believe that there is no compromise to be had when following your heart.
Michelle Obama- Former and first black First Lady. This is pretty much a no-brainer. However, the reason we’re so enamored by Michelle isn’t just because of an idle title. Her contributions to the empowerment of young women everywhere confirm that leadership is of the essence and plausible for women of all backgrounds. With her numerous appraised stylistic moments, she also unravels that doing serious work is not a hindrance to sophistication. One can handle their responsibilities and look good doing it. Truly, she is an unparalleled beacon of light for women.
Oprah Winfrey- If there was ever a lady that made something out of nothing, it’s Oprah. While the story of her upbringing is enough to tug at anyone’s heartstrings, it’s the aspect of triumph that reminds us that success is within our reach. Her charitable history reminds us that the greatest form of accomplishment is giving back to others. Through her, we are taught that one can be a billionaire, but the true identity worth adopting is that of a philanthropist.
Merely discussing ten women will always fall short in the grand scheme of exposing the splendor that women have to offer. However, we aim to propose that amazing women exist across all disciplines and generations. Matter of fact, prowess exists within you and here, at Alzerina, we feel compelled to remind you every chance we get. Happy Women’s History Month!