Women have always been surrounded by scrutiny when it comes to the media. No one wants to be judged for their looks, body, or lifestyle choices. It’s true that it’s hard to find women in the history books that will be remembered for their contributions. However, there are numerous women in history who were loved and adored in their lifetimes and today are often taught about in schools because of how far-reaching they were in society.
Table of Contents
- 1. Marilyn Monroe
- 2. June Wilkinson
- 3. Catherine Bach
- 4. Tina Turner
- 5. Cybill Shepherd
- 6. Julia Roberts
- 7. Kathleen Turner
- 8. Linda Ronstadt
- 9. Dolly Parton
- 10. Barbara Eden
- 11. Phoebe Cates
- 12. Dorothy Dandridge
- 13. Grace Kelly
- 14. Sasha Grey
- 15. Loni Anderson
- 16. Lili St. Cyr
- 17. Audrey Hepburn
- 18. Clara Bow
- 19. Elle MacPherson
- 20. Kim Novak
- 21. Jane Seymour
- 22. Kelly LeBrock
- 23. Anita Ekberg
- 24. Brigitte Bardot
- 25. Demi Moore
- 26. Jane Russell
- 27. Suzanne Somers
- 28. Cheryl Tiegs
- 29. Nastassja Kinski
- 30. Elizabeth Taylor
- 31. Jean Harlow
1. Marilyn Monroe
|Full Name||Norma Jeane Mortenson|
|Day of Birth||June 1, 1926|
|Place of Death||August 4, 1962|
Actress, model, and singer Marilyn Monroe was born in the United States. Monroe, who gained notoriety for her funny “blonde bomb” image, was one of the most prominent sex symbols of the 1950s & early 1960s. She also became a symbol of the modern sexual revolution during this time period.
At the time of her passing in 1962, she had been the highest-earning actress for a decade, during which her films had grossed a total of $200 million (or $2 billion in 2020 dollars). Even after her passing, she continued to be revered as a significant icon in popular culture. In 1999, the American Film Institute named Monroe as the sixth best female screen star of the Golden Age of Hollywood in their list of all-time top female screen stars.
2. June Wilkinson
|Full Name||June Wilkinson|
|Day of Birth||March 27, 1940|
|Place of Birth||Eastbourne, East Sussex, England|
June Wilkinson was a famous English model that became a millionaire after she appeared in a very popular advertisement for Kayser’s Cocoa. She made her money modeling for numerous other ads as well as posing for pictures with celebrities such as Audrey Hepburn and Brigitte Bardot. In 1957, Wilkinson was rated the second most beautiful woman in the world after movie star Sophia Loren. In fact, it is said that many of the studio shots of Hepburn were actually taken by Wilkinson instead.
3. Catherine Bach
|Full Name||Catherine Bachman|
|Day of Birth||March 1, 1954|
|Place of Birth||Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.|
Catherine Bach, known for her role on The Dukes of Hazzard was involved in an on-screen relationship for five seasons with the character Waylon Jennings. That’s not the only time she’s had a high-profile relationship. Catherine Bach’s husband, George Santo Pietro, also known as Marion ‘The Duke’ Ross, and she were speculated to be dating and according to People speculated that they married in secret.
4. Tina Turner
|Full Name||Anna Mae Bullock|
|Day of Birth||November 26, 1939|
|Place of Birth||Brownsville, Tennessee, U.S.|
|Years Active||1957–2009, 2020|
Tina Turner was born in Nutbush. She is often called the “First Lady of Rock ‘n’ Roll” and has received multiple awards, including seven Grammy Awards and a Kennedy Center Honor for her work with UNICEF. There is no single fact that makes her stand out as one of the top five most successful women in history, but it’s her outrageous personality that defines her as a powerful force who was not afraid to stand up to bullies and enter into uncharted territory.
5. Cybill Shepherd
|Full Name||Cybill Lynne Shepherd|
|Day of Birth||February 18, 1950|
|Place of Birth||Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.|
Cybill Shepherd was one of my favorite actresses growing up. She was known for being an actress with a loud voice, who played fiery characters. I have always looked up to her because she gave me the courage to be myself. While many women today are afraid to be different, she was able to live her life authentically. I also admire that there are women who do not conform and still manage to succeed in the competitive world of Hollywood and the entertainment industry.
6. Julia Roberts
|Full Name||Julia Fiona Roberts|
|Day of Birth||October 28, 1967|
|Place of Birth||Smyrna, Georgia, U.S.|
Julia Roberts‘ mother was a first-generation American from Canada, and her father was from Mexico. Roberts got her start as a model in her father’s marketing firm. “I always knew from a very young age that I wanted to be an actress,” she later said. “Every day I’d wear my mom’s clothes and play with different wigs.” At age five, Julia learned about acting and jumped at the chance to do it for real.
7. Kathleen Turner
|Full Name||Mary Kathleen Turner|
|Day of Birth||June 19, 1954|
|Place of Birth||Springfield, Missouri, U.S.|
Kathleen Turner is a great example of a woman who was very famous and well-known in her time, but has also been relevant for many years past that. She has had roles in movies such as Serial Mom (1994), Crimes of Passion (1984), The War of the Roses (1989) and The Accidental Tourist (1988). Her smile alone makes you smile.
8. Linda Ronstadt
|Full Name||Linda Maria Ronstadt|
|Day of Birth||July 15, 1946|
|Place of Birth||Tucson, Arizona, U.S.|
Linda Ronstadt was more than just a singer, she was more than just an accomplished songwriter. She was known for her use of the banjo and being a pioneer in music. Linda wrote “Blue Bayou,”and it’s been recorded by many other artists over the years. She also wrote “You’re No Good,” which is another track that has been used by many artists.
9. Dolly Parton
|Full Name||Dolly Rebecca Parton|
|Day of Birth||January 19, 1946|
|Place of Birth||Pittman Center, Tennessee, U.S.|
Dolly Parton is possibly one of the most famous names around today. The country star can easily be found on any T.V. show, movie, or advertisement. Parton has had worldwide success with her albums, tours, and even has her own Dixie Stampede for her birthday every year. Her career has spanned over forty years and she’s still going strong on top of all that! As if she’s not already talented enough, Parton is also an avid activist for numerous causes like the environment and animal rights.
10. Barbara Eden
|Full Name||Barbara Jean Morehead|
|Day of Birth||August 23, 1931|
|Place of Birth||Tucson, Arizona, U.S.|
Barbara Eden was a native of Chicago. She was born on May 6, 1931. She began working in radio at the age of 11. Barbara didn’t get into acting until she was 18. For this, she won the “Miss Chicago” title in 1949. Soon after this, she was offered a part in a Broadway play called “Alive and Kicking”.
11. Phoebe Cates
|Full Name||Phoebe Belle Cates|
|Day of Birth||July 16, 1963|
|Place of Birth||New York City, U.S.|
|Years Active||1982–1994, 2001, 2015 (voice only)|
One of the most famous actresses in Hollywood history, Phoebe Cates was born into a wealthy family. She began her career at 17 years-old and was one of the best-known actresses from 1970’s to the early 2000’s. However, it wasn’t until later in life did she make a name for herself. As a child actress she appeared in several movies and even landed a role on The Brady Bunch before going on to become an Oscar-winning actress.
12. Dorothy Dandridge
|Full Name||Dorothy Jean Dandridge|
|Day of Birth||November 9, 1922|
|Place of Birth||Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.|
She was born on May 18, 1922, and died on March 5, 1965. She was an American film and stage actress. She is most famous for her performance as Nettie Fowler in the 1955 musical “Carmen Jones.” The role of Nettie was initially intended for Esther Rolle, who at the time was considered the first black actress to be nominated for an Oscar. Dandridge won a Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in a Musical and was also nominated for Best Actress in a Play.
13. Grace Kelly
|Full Name||Grace Patricia Kelly|
|Day of Birth||November 12, 1929. September 14, 1982 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|Years Active||1949–1956. 1977|
Grace Kelly was an American actress and princess. She won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in Comedy or Musical in 1955 and also received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress that year. She became world famous when she starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s film Rear Window (1954).
14. Sasha Grey
|Full Name||Marina Ann Hantzis|
|Day of Birth||March 14, 1988|
|Place of Birth||North Highlands, California, U.S.|
This young lady is on top of the mountains of social media sites because of her popularity with adult films. Sasha Grey currently has over 2.4 million followers on Instagram and over 3 million on Twitter. She was born in California in 1988 and has starred in over 275 films since 2006.
Marina Ann Hantzis, commonly known as Sasha Grey, is an American model, actress, and musician. A popular model, she has done campaigns for French fashion designers, Italian footwear brands, and American Apparel, among others. A former adult film actress, she rose to fame after venturing into adult films and gaining media attention for a short period. Sasha has won several awards for her works, including the AVN, XRCO, FAME, XBIZ, and many more.
15. Loni Anderson
|Full Name||Loni Kaye Anderson|
|Day of Birth||August 5, 1945|
|Place of Birth||Saint Paul, Minnesota, U.S.|
Actress Loni Anderson was a busy woman in the 70s and 80s, starring in numerous movies and TV shows. She starred in the series WKRP In Cincinnati from 1978 to 1982 and was a big reason for its success. She also had a syndicated talk show called People Are Talking for a few years. The gorgeous actress is 81 today and has been married twice, including a six-year union with Burt Reynolds from 1988 to 1994.
16. Lili St. Cyr
|Full Name||Marie Frances Van Schaack|
|Day of Birth||June 3, 1918|
|Place of Birth||Minneapolis, Minnesota, US|
One of the first burlesque stars in America, Lili St. Cyr was known for her beauty. She appeared on many magazine covers and even starred in a movie where she played a mermaid. The film was a hit, and she became a famous personality for young women everywhere to emulate. While it wasn’t discussed much, her show was quite risqué back then for it’s time.
17. Audrey Hepburn
|Full Name||Audrey Kathleen Ruston|
|Day of Birth||May 4, 1929. January 20, 1993 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Ixelles, Brussels, Belgium|
|Years Active||1948–1989 (actress)1954–1993 (humanitarian)|
Audrey Hepburn is one of the most famous women on the planet. She’s known for her beautiful and graceful on-screen talents as well as her on-location charm and beauty. She was nominated for five Academy Awards and won the first (for Best Actress in a Leading Role) three times (for “Funny Face” in 1957, “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” in 1961, and “Wait Until Dark” in 1967). She was also an honorary member of the American Film Institute.
18. Clara Bow
|Full Name||Clara Gordon Bow|
|Day of Birth||July 29, 1905. September 27, 1965 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Brooklyn, New York, U.S.|
Clara was a silent film actress during the 1920s who became a sensation overnight after her first film. She was also known as a style icon of the time. According to America’s History for Kids, “She discovered she could combine sex appeal with stardom by wearing low-cut gowns.” Her legacy is still being felt today, as her skintight dresses have been emulated by many designers today. Bow didn’t just dress sexy, though.
19. Elle MacPherson
|Full Name||Eleanor Nancy Gow|
|Day of Birth||March 29, 1964|
|Place of Birth||Killara, New South Wales, Australia|
Elle MacPherson was born in British Colombia, Canada in 1968. Since her birth, she’s been a famous fashion model. She appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine for the first time in 1986. Since then, she has appeared on several other covers for fashion magazines like Vogue and Elle. She also became the face of Nivea products which are sold all over the world.
20. Kim Novak
|Full Name||Marilyn Pauline Novak|
|Day of Birth||February 13, 1933|
|Place of Birth||Chicago, Illinois, U.S.|
One of the most famous impressionable women to come out of the 1940’s is Kim Novak. She has had a successful career, which was ignited first by her marriage with director Alfred Hitchcock. She rose through the ranks to become one of Hollywood’s first leading ladies. Her success included being nominated for an Oscar for her performance in Vertigo, but she is most remembered for her role in 1954’s The Bellboy and the Women, which was directed by Hitchcock himself.
21. Jane Seymour
|Full Name||Jane Seymour|
|Day of Birth||1508. October 24, 1537 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Hampton Court Palace, England|
|Parents||John Seymour, Margery Wentworth|
The Late Medieval Englishwoman Who Conquered France. In 1418, England’s King Henry V made a marriage agreement with the French King Charles VI. The marriage agreement was a betrothal because the French king needed an alliance with England against the French and Spanish enemies. He later married her in 1423 after she was crowned Queen of France. She did not have a noteworthy life in England but her reign over France was extremely influential. Jane Seymour is best known for being the first person to have been called king consort.
22. Kelly LeBrock
|Full Name||Kelly LeBrock|
|Day of Birth||1959|
|Place of Birth||New York City, U.S.|
Kelly LeBrock was no stranger to the spotlight, working alongside Steven Spielberg on the movie “Weird Science.” She would soon go on to be noticed in Hollywood for her roles in “The Woman in Red” and “The Hard Way.” But what made Kelly famous wasn’t just her acting skill. The actress was celebrated for developing a workout regimen called Shape Up. Kelly LeBrock even contributed a series of seven videos called Shape Up For Life! The videos were sold worldwide and have been shown on television ever since.
23. Anita Ekberg
|Full Name||Kerstin Anita Marianne Ekberg|
|Day of Birth||September 29, 1931|
|Day of Death||January 11, 2015|
Born in 1931, Anita Ekberg is the sixth child in a family of eight in a small port called Malmo in southern Sweden. At the age of 19, she became Miss Sweden in 1950. After winning the crown, Anita Ekberg continued to compete in Miss Universe Universe in the US. Although she did not win the top prize, she still attracted the attention of many Hollywood filmmakers, including director Russ Meyer, billionaire Howard Hughes, and famous actor and film producer John Wayne.
The name Anita Ekberg is kind of a familiar one. In the late 1940s and ’50s, she was the “It Girl” of Sweden. Her name was associated with skimpy swimsuits and being cool in a bikini. It’s not hard to see why she was famous during that time period, as she also had a lot of talent as an actress, model, and singer.
24. Brigitte Bardot
|Full Name||Brigitte Anne-Marie Bardot|
|Day of Birth||September 28, 1934|
|Place of Birth||Paris, France|
Brigitte Bardot is known as the French version of Marilyn Monroe. Compared to the Hollywood superstar, the French version of Monroe enjoys far more luck – first of all, because of the fact that Bardot doesn’t have to pay the highest price for the glory. Once considered a sex symbol of world cinema, during her peak years of fame, Brigitte led a liberal, modern life that made many people jealous. She is a star who has both a passionate fan base and a hating force.
Brigitte Bardot is known for her roles in movies like And God Created Woman, Babette’s Feast, and Modesty Blaise. She was also known for her stunning good looks, which is why the French magazine called her one of the most beautiful women of all time.
25. Demi Moore
|Full Name||Demi Gene Guynes|
|Day of Birth||November 11, 1962|
|Place of Birth||Roswell, New Mexico, U.S.|
Demi Moore is one of the hottest women in history. She’s been on the cover of countless magazines and has graced the big screen with big names like Jack Nicholson, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Her film roles are what she’ll be most remembered for in her lifetime, but she is also known for her good looks.
26. Jane Russell
|Full Name||Ernestine Jane Geraldine Russell|
|Day of Birth||June 21, 1921. February 28, 2011 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Bemidji, Minnesota, U.S.|
Russell once said, “I make other women want to be me, I make men want to be with me.” Raised in her hometown of Bemidji, Minnesota, Jane was already an attractive young girl by the time she became a teenager. She worked in vaudeville, singing and dancing around the nation. This led her to model. At just 18 years old, she became a starlet for Howard Hughes’ newly created RKO Pictures. Russell quickly became one of Hollywood’s most desired leading ladies.
27. Suzanne Somers
|Full Name||Suzanne Marie Mahoney|
|Day of Birth||October 16, 1946|
|Place of Birth||San Bruno, California, U.S.|
The media has made a lot of people know much about famous women in history. But it would have been foolish to think that no one would have known about Suzanne Somers before 1967 when she appeared in the film “Barbarella” with Jane Fonda. This was when did she burst into fame. She is well known for her appearance on “Three’s Company,” which starred John Ritter and Joyce DeWitt.
28. Cheryl Tiegs
|Full Name||Cheryl Rae Tiegs|
|Day of Birth||September 25, 1947|
|Place of Birth||Breckenridge, Minnesota, U.S.|
Supermodel Cheryl Tiegs is one of the most recognizable models of all time. She is most known for her high cheekbones and blue eyes. Cheryl Tiegs was one of the first women to make a million dollars per year in the 1970s. She is often noted for being “the face that launched a thousand ships.”
29. Nastassja Kinski
|Full Name||Nastassja Aglaia Nakszynski|
|Day of Birth||January 24, 1961|
|Place of Birth||West Berlin, West Germany|
Nastassja Kinski was an Austrian actress who was only 16 when she left her mother behind because of her love for the world of acting. She was discovered doing a play in Vienna aged 16 and instantly became an overnight sensation. Her acting career took off after she starred in the film “The Ninth Gate” which was released in 1999. The film is said to be based on the novel “The Ninth Gate”.
30. Elizabeth Taylor
|Full Name||Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor|
|Day of Birth||February 27, 1932. March 23, 2011 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||London, England|
Although she was a complete and total “toxic” fever dream, we can’t deny that we wouldn’t mind getting a glimpse of Elizabeth Taylor. She was the epitome of beauty and elegance in her time and inspired many other women to become everything they could be. It’s hard to believe that she knew what she wanted and demanded it from those around her.
31. Jean Harlow
|Full Name||Harlean Harlow Carpenter|
|Day of Birth||March 3, 1911. June 7, 1937 (Died)|
|Place of Birth||Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.|
Jean Harlow was much more than a pretty face. The bombshell actress paved the way for many other actresses in Hollywood. She was known for her blonde hair, big eyes, and voluptuous figure. During the height of her popularity in the early 1930s, Harlow received five offers to play Delilah in “Samson and Delilah”, which became one of her most iconic roles.