I love that ESSENCE celebrates everything fierce, fun and fabulous – that’s how I try to live my life. It’s all in the attitude. The idea is to be the best you can be, every single day. Put your “fab daily” on, and not just when you’re going out. I see some people on the street and think, ‘what made you come out like that?’ Unless you’re going to the gym, you should look your very best. You don’t need heels and tons of makeup – just pull yourself together!

Looking fierce lifts your spirits. Remember, life is a stage!

I feel fierce, fun and fabulous today, but I haven’t always loved myself. It’s come with age – I’ve grown into the woman I always wanted to be. I wish I could go back and tell the 25-year-old me that I don’t have to follow every trend (in fashion and life), or try to be like the most beautiful, desirable girl on the scene. None of that matters. To emulate someone you admire is great, but to be yourself is even greater.

Looking back over my life, I’ve had my share of fabulous moments, like giving birth to my daughters, marrying David, starting Iman Cosmetics, and receiving the CFDA Fashion Icon Award in 2010. But my biggest professional moment was when I was Yves Saint Laurent’s muse for the “African Queen” couture collection in 1985. I remember standing for hours in his atelier, dressed in nothing but silky black pantyhose, a white robe and black stilettos, while YSL cut bolts of fabric on my body – surreal! Plus, I also starred in the ads, which were shot by David Bailey. That was fabulous.

And then there was the time I walked in a Thierry Mugler fashion show with monkeys and naked men behind me with umbrellas. From the sublime to the ridiculous — that’s fashion! And I’ve loved working in such a creative industry.

I’ve definitely had a fierce, fun and fabulous journey – and the best is yet to come.