Moderated by Hall, the panel featured a juicy conversation between Blige, Latifah, Niecy Nash, Jada Pinkett Smith, Monica, Dee Rees, and Planned Parenthood's Kristi Henderson.

Essence.com
Sep, 01, 2017

There's nothing like hearing powerful Black women speak their truth, so for this week's Yes, Girl! podcast we revisited the incredible ESSENCE Fest "Strength of a Woman" panel moderated by Tamron Hall.

Featuring Mary J. Blige, Niecy Nash, Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah, Monica, Mudbound director Dee Rees, and Planned Parenthood's Kristi Henderson, the ladies define what it means to be strong women, talk black girl magic, and empowering each other.

"Black girl magic, for me, it's that thing," Latifah explained. "It's that undeniable elixir that comes from being a Black woman. It's that thing we ooze. I love coming to ESSENCE Festival because I like the movement of Black women's bodies and I just love how we look in droves walking down the block. We look right."

The star-studded panel also offered up advice that they would give their 15-year-old selves, nuggets even adults can live by today. 

"I would tell my 15-year-old self: perspective," said Rees. "All these little girls you're not fitting in with, the cool kids won't be the cool kids in, like, five years. Be yourself."