Actress, author and advocate Gabrielle Union turns 49 today! The ageless beauty,  who notoriously played a high school student in mainstream movies well into her 30s, has graced the cover of our pages on eight separate occasions (nine if you count her 2007 double cover). Naturally, she’s killed it every time. 

Whether she was featured in a group shot alongside legends such as Queen Latifah and Angela Basset in 2006, her Think Like a Man castmates in 2014 or her husband Dwyane Wade in 2012, her fresh face and sparkling eyes stood out nearly as much as they did on her various solo covers. 

From her first cover in 2005 to her most recent in 2016, Union has always graced our pages with a fierce look and a frank honesty that is both refreshing and relatable. So on her big day, celebrate one of our favorite Scorpio women with a look back at her iconic ESSENCE covers.