Anyone else tired of those blogger lists that name “top” bloggers but always seem to miss the mark? Well I am.
I’m not hating. I’ve just happened to notice and have been disappointed about the fact that there are some truly dynamic women who have changed the game when it comes to blogging and business and who often aren’t even mentioned on those lists. Then there’s the fact that those lists fall way short—why are people just being named out of the blue with no reason to co-sign why they are so great at what they do? So not only will I list some awesome ladies on my own TOP list, but I’ll detail why I adore these divas.
Yes, I’ve made many of those lists and I’ve missed quite a few and trust me, it’s no issue. But I cringe, just cringe at the fact that some serious heavy hitters keep being omitted because people don’t know who are the real power players on these innanet streets. I get it: I don’t go to the conferences and my face is not always up in the place so without being seen and being in any particular circles, I get looked over. No problem. As long as the amazing sponsors I work with at least know I exist! So today on my blog I’m serving up justice to some noteworthy women who deserve some serious praise in my opinion. If you didn’t make the list, it by no means means you’re not fab. It means that you probably always make the list. I want to highlight the women I FEEL are always looked over for whatever reason.
I wanted to come up with a real working list of black women who I think everyone keeps missing and who are killing it. These women – some who aren’t even bloggers per se – are the shit, plain and simple. They run their blogs like true bosses, hold down conferences, write top-selling novels, run with the big dawgs and are branding bad asses who really need no introduction. But since some of these folks who create these lists don’t know who’s who, I’ll just lay down the law on how these ladies are winning in their own respective right. She’s not heavy, she’s my sista. And that’s exactly why I support these sistas.
Before I list the baddies, I want these women to know that they fall on my particular list because I truly admire them. I watch them from afar, may not even say much to them but please know I am looking and learning. I listed these ladies by their overall reach and impact into the blogosphere, the Internet at large and the connections they’ve made… AND because these ladies are my personal favs.
Hey, many don’t even know I feel this way! Now let me say, there are hundreds of women I could list but everybody is at a different point and level in this game. These women, to ME, let me say this again, to ME, take the top spot. Look and learn about them and in the future, be sure to make mention of these wonderful women. (In NO particular order.)
- Akilah Richards
This sista is my muse. If you’ve been missing out on Akilah, you are in for a treat once you start following her. She’s earth mother, a forward thinking, out of the box baddie who can help you radically repurpose your life, while teaching you to eat clean, unschool your kids and take care of your inner self in a snap. Akilah is coolness personified; a sista who writes with purpose to remove herself and thoughts from what mainstream thinks should be her cup of tea. I really can’t sum up Akilah because she can’t be boxed in. So I’ll use these words from her site:
Radical Self-Expression work (we shorten that by just saying ‘radical selfie’) helps you to navigate and shed the things that put your voice on mute and your confidence out of reach. Our work is centered around personal growth and professional fulfillment, and we view those through the specific life experiences of self-expression, spirituality, parenting, and entrepreneurship.
Through unfiltered dialogue, self-inquiry exercises, and personal development activities around those particular experiences, we aim to get you clear on WHO you are, WHAT you need, and HOW to get free from the things that keep you muted and mediocre. In this environment you learn how to stop presenting yourself and start being present as yourself.
She’s the shit and so much more. I have to find the time to get private coaching from this sista. Follow her @RadicalSelfie
- Denene Millner
Everytime I see a blogger list that omits the name Denene Millner, I immediately know the list ain’t legit. You can’t list top bloggers, especially in Atlanta, and not have MyBrownBaby among them. Denene is the sista with the fist straight up in the air, while airing out her grievances on her blog about the bull that we as black moms, and black people at large deal with on a regular. Not only that but she’s an author extraordinaire having penned some of the most successful New York Times bestsellers on the market from Steve Harvey to Uncle Charlie. I also love Denene because she is indeed a sista who’s got your back and have helped me land numerous gigs and was the link to some great connections for me. Thank you D. you will always be the epitome of what mommy blogging is about. Follow her @MyBrownBaby (photo Erskine Issac)
- Joyce Brewer
Joyce is a hoot. Joyce’s platform takes you on a journey into mommyhood with her husband and son “The Antoines” and she is the go-to mom when you need to know what’s the best fix when it comes to products for the 40-plus of us. Joyce is funny, pulls no punches and tells it like it is. She is open and chronicles the ups and downs of issues that plague us moms and she reviews products with all honesty. She works with a lot of major brands, is a conference speaker on occasion and loves to infuse insightful must-know videos on her platform. I really like Joyce and whether it’s wine o’clock or not, she keeps you entertained and informed. Follow her @MommyTalkShow
- Kia Morgan Smith (Me!)
It’s frightful to write about myself or brag about me. So I’ll just drop a few lines of my bio here in 3rd person for those who don’t know me.
Kia is a parenting blogger at Cincomom.com, an award-winning blog she created that examines parenting and motherhood. On Cincomom, Kia dishes out engaging mom-to-mom advice on everything from child-rearing and raising five kids to love and marriage. Kia has also worked as a parenting expert forMyBrownBaby.com, HelloBeautiful.com and SheKnows.com, national websites where she provides insight into the whimsical journey of parenting. She has been sought out as a brand ambassador for national companies such as Disney, Walmart, Dream Kids, Children’s Motrin, KFC, Kmart, Sears, Kleenex, Mott’s Juice, and Cottonelle to name a few. For the last three years Kia has worked with the Walt Disney Company as one of 25 top bloggers invited to Los Angeles for exclusive celebrity meet and greets and red carpet premieres. She has been given behind-the-scenes access to interview an array of celebrities including the cast from Black-ish, Gwyneth Paltrow, Vin Diesel, Chris Pratt, Chris Evans, John Lasseter, Zoe Saldana, and numerous directors and movie producers from movies like The Help, Cars 2, Brave, Guardians of the Galaxy, Frozen, and Captain America. Most recently, Kia secured a partnership with WSBTV as a parenting influencer and will work with the news station hand-in-hand on family friendly community news. In a previous life Kia also served as a reporter for The Virginian-Pilot newspaper, and later an education/political reporter for the Philadelphia Tribune. Kia is also the author of the delightful children’s book Goony Goo-Goo and Ga-Ga Too.
- Danyelle Little
Danyelle is adorable. As a former HR manager, she dishes out advice for those of you who like to get the best out of both worlds-personally and professionally. Danyelle’s got all the answers for those of us trying to balance home life and work life. Just when we think it’s impossible, Danyelle helps working parents to put their money where their mouth is and enjoy life with a lot more umph! And she’s a traveling diva with her darling daughter, proving that moms can have it all – but keeping it 100 with your own reality is the key. Find out how by following @TheCubicleChick
- Trina Small
Trina and her daughter Peyton are the cutest fashion combo. Trina is a fashion boss and knows that being fab has no starting age. Her stellar blog, Baby Shopaholic, chronicles all of her adventures in fashion with her daughter, Peyton, in tow. Trina resides in Atlanta with her husband, daughter and one on the way. On the Baby Shopaholic, you will find style and beauty inspiration for the whole family. Trina has partnered with some of the top fashion brands and I always think she doesn’t get the shine she truly deserves. Follow @BabyShopaholic
- Amiryah Martin
Just know there IS such a thing that exists as being Disney obsessed. Just ask Amiryah! She’ll run down everything you need to know as a Disney Mom panelist and if you want to save a few bucks on dinner too, she’ll tell you how to do so in a snap! Amiryah loves to chat about family, food, fashion and finance. Amiyrah has built up a small corner of the internet as a place for financial accountably for herself and a learning space for her readers. Amiyrah says she’s a firm believer in living a frugal lifestyle without deprivation. And she’s as sweet as can be too. Follow her @AmiyrahMartin
- Awesomely Luvvie
Luvvie Ajayi is determined to bring about change one chuckle at a time on social media. As a digital strategist, humor blogger at Awesomely Luvvie and director of her non-profit Red Pump Project, the self-proclaimed “wacky wordsmith” has used her various platforms to not only raise awareness about causes like HIV/AIDS through her foundation, but to also infuse laughter into people’s lives in a unique way. With an irreverent voice and razor-sharp wit she dishes on everything pop culture, social justice and technology while serving side-eye and hilarious commentary that has earned her top billing as one of the most influential voices in the blogosphere. Even Shonda Rhimes is a fan, retweeting and addressing her posts directly during Thursday night OMG TV. Fresh, bold and brilliant, Luvvie’s commentary keeps her followers in stitches and brands clamoring to work with her. Follow her @Luvvie
- Rene Syler
This woman is a true GEM. Rene is also one of the funniest moms on social media who is NOT afraid to put it all out there. However I don’t think she realizes how much she makes me cackle on a daily basis. She’s a natural. I really like Rene Syler, not only because she’s relatable (so many women of her stature are too bougie for my taste), she’s real and she is all about helping other women harness the wisdom of accepting and understanding that they are good at what they do. It’s hard for me to sum it Rene because she’s so awesome and accomplished so I will defer to the bio on her site which reads:
The TV personality knew she wanted a career in television. Unfortunately, Rene did not come to that realization until after she had spent thousands of dollars on a degree in psychology. She forged ahead and after reporter/anchor jobs in Reno, Birmingham and Dallas, she landed a plum assignment as one of the anchors of The Early Show on CBS. There she interviewed the likes of former First Lady Laura Bush, politicians, authors and actors like Senator John McCain, Antonio Banderas, Denzel Washington, Beyoncé and Will Smith, to name a few. In 2006, Rene made a life-changing decision. As the daughter of two breast cancer survivors who had recently been diagnosed with her own breast disease, Rene decided to have a preventive mastectomy, a surgery that was profiled by Oprah Winfrey on her show. That experience also ignited Rene’s passion; now she travels the country as an ambassador for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, spreading the word about early detection and treatment of the disease. Rene was also awarded the prestigious Gracie Allen award for her television series on breast cancer.
But just as she had made the decision to have a mastectomy, Rene was fired from her high-profile TV job. After battling a significant depression, she began to rebuild her life and career. She started by assembling an online presence and community at www.goodenoughmother.com, born of the publication of her first book, Good Enough Mother: The Perfectly Imperfect Book of Parenting. Pretty amazing right? Also she’s one of the hosts of the show Exhale on Aspire TV. Follow all her greatness @GoodEnufMother
- Stacey Taylor
Stacey is one of the few sistas who will pop up in my inbox for no other reason than to say hi and remind me of my awesomeness. Who does that? An awesome sista who is truly a breath of fresh air herself with her wonderfully sweet personality and positivity on social media. Stacey is also a force in the natural hair community with her blog, TheSistahCafe.com. Stacey Taylor is a fun-loving, 40+ Super Chick who calls Atlanta home. “The SistahChick” was created in 2008 when Stacey Taylor saw a lack of You Tube representation for her hair type and for African American girls with natural hair. This blog is a place to share natural hair news, tips and techniques as well as details of her life as a working, wife and mother living, thriving and surviving in Atlanta. As a result of a YouTube video series that focused on her daughter’s natural hair and ways to maintain it, a private social network, Our Natural Kids was created. Our Natural Kids is a space where parents of children with kinky, curly or multi textured hair can come and share information. Through years of natural hair advocacy and her daughters own scalp issues, a product, Sistah Buttah was developed. Sistah Buttah is an all natural Shea butter based product that is perfect for the hair, skin and scalp. She also hosts an Atlanta Women’s brunch series, “Sistahs Do Brunch.” This reminds me of one thing: I ran out of Sistah Buttah Stacey!! LOL! Follow her @TheSistahChick
- Jai Stone
If you look up boss in the dictionary, I think Jai Stone’s picture is there. Not sure, but it’s gotta be! This woman is a whirlwind, a branding bad-ass who can take you from a relativity unknown entity to a social media superstar. She serves up advice and with her clients and what I love is that she’s authentic and open. There’s no charade with Jai. She’s an emotional nudist who lets it all out. Jai is a Socialpreneur with more than 15 years of experience in building successful brands online in multiple arenas. She specializes in Relationships & Personal Discovery. Jai has worked with some of the most recognizable brands in the world. What you see is what you get and her quirky multi colored hairdos and vibrant makeup is an added treat. Follow her @JaiStone
- Marie Denee
I only met Marie Denee once or twice but each encounter was a treat. She’s very sweet and authentic and owns her fabulousness as the Queen of Curvy. Marie just moved to Atlanta and she’s taken the city by storm running her site Curvy Fashionista dedicated the last several years to growing The Curvy Fashionista® into a playful and celebratory community serving the lastest trends in and out of the plus-size fashion industry. After working in retail for over twelve years, Marie saw first hand the need for a valuable resource for the plus-size woman. The Curvy Fashionista® is more than fashion, it is a place of empowerment for women of all shapes and sizes. Her passion is encouraging plus-size women to feel beautiful and fashionable. Just the advocate the curvy gal needs. Follow her @MarieDenee
- Ty Alexander
This grey-haired goddess’ silvery hair is just gorgeous. And no, she didn’t use Miss Clairol on her coif to capture this look that’s usually reserved for Golden Girls. Ty is naturally grey and it’s a hallmark of her beauty that makes her stand out in the hair blogger community. I’ve never met Ty, but online she’s a social butterfly and she’s funny. Known for her beauty and lifestyle savvy, but adored because of her gorgeous grey tresses, Ty is an expert online beauty and lifestyle editor, social media consultant and style and beauty TV correspondent. Ty started her impressive editorial career as the style and beauty editor of HelloBeautiful.com, building the section from occasional stylish musings to an authority in all things beautiful with her bare, manicured hands. Armed with extensive knowledge, compassion for women of color and the kind of sass that instantly made her your BFF, Ty’s work with this top women’s site has allowed her dedicated readers to face their days with grace, and of course style. Follow her @gorgeousingrey
- Krystel Spell
Giving homage and respect to our armed forces, Krystel Spell uses her ArmyWife101 platform as an online platoon of sorts to share the latest on life in the military spouse community. Readers can find content on everything from military life, current events, military discounts, to products reviews, travel reviews, recipes plus much more. Krystel says it is her random thoughts and her mostly no holds barred content that keeps readers entertained and coming back for more. While she shares her fair share of military life articles, she makes every effort to make AW101 a place where spouses can come when having a hard day and have a good laugh or find something funny or relatable to read. And if you’re a military spouse, Krystel can also hook you up with a package to send overseas. Krystel is also the founder of TheSpouseBox.com, a monthly subscription box for military spouses. I’ve never met her, but admire her work. Follow her @ArmyWives101
- Ronnie Tyler
I have no idea how so many lists keep missing this superstar Ronnie Tyler. She may not be a “blogger” per se, but she has penetrated the blogger community deep and works hand in hand with many of us. She’s a powerhouse in Atlanta and can’t be missed with her website Black and Married With Kids that she runs with her husband Lamar. Ronnie Tyler is a testament to being a renaissance woman on the move. She’s happily married with kids and despite what negative portrayals of the black family reflect, Ronnie’s relationship with her own husband Lamar is a far cry from what the mainstream media perceives our relationships to be. Ronnie’s been a major part of improving that negative perception with her hugely popular website BlackAndMarriedWithKids.com. The website, BMWK, is the largest marriage website devoted to black people on the net. Ronnie stands beside her man running the company and because of it, the Ebony 100 Power Couple present a daily look at relationships, a popular event series, a series of bestselling books and movies like, Still Standing, Happily Ever After: A Positive Image of Black Marriage; You Saved Me; and Men Ain’t Boys. Ronnie has played an integral part in elevating the consciousness of black love and marriage and functional black relationships. Also, as a mom of four, she’s helping other mothers like her with parenting advice and marriage best practices in a space where they feel a sense of pride, community and sisterhood. Follow her @BlackandMarried @RonnieTyler
- Ekene Onu
I’ve never met Ekene but I need her in my life! She’s the sista who is dedicated to helping us get refreshed and to remix our lives. Ekene was a licensed pharmacist with over 15 years of professional practice but four years ago, hit the Refresh button and made a radical shift in her own life. She became a certified professional coach, speaker and author and she’s also certified in organizational consulting and change leadership. Ekene started Refresh because she saw a need and wanted to create a space for women from all walks of life to get the resources, support and tools they need to create successful lives on their own terms. She wanted to do work that focused on holistic leadership that starts from the inside and radiates out. What Ekene is doing is just phenomenal. Follow her @ekeneonline
- Patrice C. Washington
Not a blogger but the bomb. Patrice is the money maven; a down-to-earth mom and wife who teaches millions how to get their life and their pockets right. She rolls with the big dawgs; a Steve Harvey money mentoring regular on his TV and radio shows. And she’s an author who has made her mark selling millions of books – from Real Money Answers for Every Woman, Real Money Answers For Men and Real Money Answers For College Life & Beyond. As a public speaker who has gone on several national tours and even held her own conference, she’s simply a powerhouse and so much more. If you’ve missed out on Patrice, you’ve missed out on plenty. Follow her @SeekWisdomPCW
- Bernetta Jackson-Knighten
You can catch Bernetta posing for the camera (now click!) or fulfilling big dreams as Founder of The Knighten Program. Bernetta’s a social butterfly and runs a style and lifestyle blog that’s a resource on motherhood, wife-life and everything that comes along with that which includes: fitness, keeping your self up, natural hair, family events, date nights and reviews (events & products). If Bernetta’s finds a deal, she’s like a cool homegirl who keeps you in the know. Bernetta says her desire is to Motivate & Inspire all to Live Smart, Simple & Stylish by making the best choices for you! Follow her @BernettaStyle
- Tiffini Gatlin
Tiffini is truly an ATL girl on the go. As co-founder of Curkalon.com, Tiffini is taking over the hair industry by offering pre-curled locs for crochet braids. You don’t find many black women dominating the black hair industry on the business side. Through her blog, Tiffini connects brands with other influential bloggers, focuses on strategic corporate and small business social media planning, authentic content creation, hosting fabulous events and the overall execution of making life easier for busy professionals and brands. She also runs Curlkalon.com Tiffini Gatlin and Shavone Riggins, who noticed a void in the synthetic hair extension market when it came to protective styling options. The two business women shared the same vision of creating safe, affordable and stress-free products that blended seamlessly with the hair textures of women with virgin hair. As millennials, they have used technology and social platforms to educate thousands of followers and supporters about their cutting edge product that ultimately saves their consumers time and money. With over 30 years of combined protective styling experience, these beauty change agents are using Curlkalon™ Hair Collection as a way to make their mark in an Asian dominated market to revolutionize how women purchase, maintain and style their hair. No matter where a woman is on her hair journey, Curlkalon™ can and will confidently meet her protective styling needs. Follow her @AtlGoToGirl
- Ashley Marshall-Seward
Mommy Week is a lifestyle blog for women featuring recipes, DIY, family fun & entertainment, family travel, and healthy living info families and kids. Ashley is a mom on the go and the sweetest person ever. Ashley is a stay at home, homeschooling mom to 3 beautiful children, 2 fur babies, and wife to her college sweetheart for 13 years. Mommy Week blog was launched in July of 2013 to share her love for family, food, travel, healthy living, and lifestyle through informative posts and articles. Daily on Mommy Week you can find dinner ideas, info to help you plan your next family vacation, and natural health tips all in one place. Her goal for Mommy Week is to inspire and motivate women everywhere!
Follow her @MommyWeek
21. Andrea Amir
If you don’t know who Andrea Amir is that’s probably because she’s a little shy. Bit don’t let the shyness fool ya, Andrea is the “chick” you need to know. She’s the founder of SmartMoneyChicks.com and has over 13 years of experience helping people reach their financial goals as a realtor, mortgage banker and educator. After experiencing her very own financial hardship — filing bankruptcy two times in the same year because she took misguided advice from a “professional” — she realized that with a solid grasp of financial literacy skills, a little planning, and discipline, such drastic measures weren’t needed at all. As a Certified Personal Finance Educator and Certified Housing Counselor, Andrea now spends her time maintaining financial success and educating others as well as helping them avoid financial issues. Smart lady. Follow her @SmartMoneyChick @AndreaAmir
22. Hedwige Di-Di St. Louis
This list would not be complete without Di-di St. Louis on it. While she’s not a blogger, she is a badass who saves lives daily as an OBGYN, helping women have babies and balance their bodies and health. Not only that but she cares wholly about moms and their babies and started HealthyMommyHappyBaby.com, the go-to resource for the black woman to learn how to take care of herself from the inside out. Di-di is also a dear friend who has truly helped me to stay sane. I’ve called on her numerous times for her help personally and she’s always lended an ear and offered solid advice to me as a friend.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Di-Di is the the head mommy-in-charge of two children living in Atlanta, Ga. She joined Morehouse School of Medicine’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in 2012, after six years in private practice and she currently work as the medical director for a nonprofit women’s health organization serving Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi.
As a mother, doctor, and woman of color, it puts her in a unique position. Health and wellness is her passion and profession. She consults women on personal health and in various stages of mothering.She created Healthy Mommy, Happy Baby for these reasons and because even though the number of mommy-targeted websites and online communities continue to grow, there are few sites that provide credible information addressing the issues unique to moms of color. Her experience as a private practitioner and public health advocate has shown her how critical the early stages of motherhood are for setting a firm foundation for mom and child, as well as for the entire family. Her hope is that when you visit Healthy Mommy, Happy Baby, you’ll not only find expert and accurate health information, but that you’ll also be able to use the information to make sound decisions for you and your family. Follow Her @TheHealthyMommy
23. Jemimah Scarlett
Mimi Scarlett is a sista who makes parenthood look effortless. Where she finds the time to craft and sew and decorate devinely like the black Martha Stewart, I don’t know. Looking at her gorgeous home will make you grab a mop and broom and a can of paint and try your hardest to get your domain together. But I digress. Everybody can’t be Mimi. I love this diva and she has helped me in so many ways. She’s a cool AKA and mommy over at LipGlossandBinky.com. But now the binky days are over for her kids, Mimi’s blog is changing and on Sept 1st she will launch UnlikelyMartha.com, a potpourri of her lifestyle that extends beyond parenting.
UnlikeMartha.com will be a Lifestyle blog devoted to subconsciously encouraging women to live their best lives. Mimi’s a self professed fab Mom. Be sure to check out Mimi when she launches her new blog. I’m excited to see what’s to come! For now follow her @GlossyMimi. When her social media handles change, I will update.
Are you seeing any names for the first time? Who else should I add to the list? Be sure to check out their blogs.