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Daisy Buchanan | Contributing Writer | Tuesday, 14 July 2015

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

The Debrief: It's easy to get bogged down with the boring stuff - but if you're looking for an inspirational reason to follow your passions, we've got five, right here...

When we’re little, our dreams have no limits. At six, seven or eight, it seems totally reasonable to decide that when you’re a grown up, you won’t just be a prima ballerina – you’ll be the first one to perform in space. You’ll return from your mission just in time to attend the Oscars, and in your winning speech you’ll mention that your recent trip has inspired you to devote your life to the study of Really Hard Physics.

But as we get older, our dreams get smaller. When you’re 22, paying off your student loan feels like an impossible fantasy. Never mind the Moon, you’d be lucky to get two weeks in Crete. 

Worldwide, approximately 68% of all arts and humanities graduates are female. Record numbers of people under 35 are starting new businesses, and although women might be in the minority in this area, the numbers are growing.

When you’re feeling bored, burned out and you’re working to pay the rent, it’s difficult to find the energy to set yourself a challenge and ask what you really want, and how to make it happen. But inspiration is out there. These five women will inspire you creatively – but they will also change your outlook, attitude, energy levels, and challenge the little voice that says ‘I can’t’ with a louder one that shouts, ‘I’ll try!’

These women are also all involved in Clinique’s #faceforward campaign to inspire themselves and others to focus on the future. Meet the women who will inspire you to follow your dreams.

Serena Guen

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

Serena has been called the ‘Mark Zuckerberg of publishing’, and she’s the youngest magazine proprietor in the world. When she was in her third year of New York University, she founded global travel magazine SUITCASE. Serena says: ‘I’d wanted to start a travel magazine when I was older, but then I thought, “Why wait?”’.

Serena launched SUITCASE while completing her studies and recovering from a broken foot(!). The hard work paid off – The Evening Standard named her one of the 25 Most Influential Londoners Under 25. Serena reminds us that there’s no point procrastinating once you’ve worked out what you want. Make it happen!

Olivia Barker

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

Like many of us, Olivia Barker went off on a gap year before uni and spent several months living in Uganda. But visiting the slums in the city of Kampala shocked her, and she wanted to do more for the children she met who lived in poverty. She contacted several charities in the UK and Uganda for support, and when that didn’t work, she set one up herself.

She co-founded Kids Club Kampala in 2009, which has gone from reaching 200 children in need, to 4,000. Olivia’s work has won her the Cosmopolitan Ultimate Fundraiser title, as well as a Vodafone World Of Difference Award. Olivia shows us that you should never take no for an answer – just create your own ‘yes’. 

Hannah Bronfman

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

As well as being known for her modelling and film work, Hannah launched Green Owl clothing in 2011, an environmentally sustainable streetwear clothing line, and went on to co-found Beautified. We’ve all thought, ‘If only there was an Uber for nail bars’ – but Hannah took that idea and made it happen.

She’s also keen on food and fitness, running HBFIT in her spare time(!) and investing in New York restaurants. Hannah might be the ultimate inspiration for anyone with more than one dream – if you tackle one thing at a time and build up to your biggest ideas, you can do it all!

Temi Mwale

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

When Temi was 14, one of her closest friends was shot and died after an argument broke out at a party. She decided that she wanted to make people aware of the problems of gang violence in her hometown, Barnet, as well as helping people involved with gangs.

In 2012, she successfully ran for Youth Parliament so she could get the issue in the public eye, eventually founding the charity Get Outta The Gang and becoming its CEO. Temi was awarded a Point Of Light award for her positive campaigning work. Temi proves that something positive can come out of tragedy, if you’re determined enough. 

Margaret Zhang

5 Women Who Will Totally Inspire You To Follow Your Dreams

Law student Margaret didn’t wait until after graduation to get started as a model and stylist. She launched her site,, when she was 16, and she’s styled runways and hosted the TV programme Fashion Asia. Everyone wants to know how she does it, and she’s kindly posted some excellent life advice.

‘Consider all the time you spend procrastinating on Facebook, on the couch, on your phone, in a day, and reallocate that to something productive. Set signpost goals in your mind of where you want to be in a year, two years, five years, and 10 years. If what you’re doing at any point in time isn’t contributing to that, stop.’

Margaret reminds us that we won’t achieve our goals instantly, but we have to commit to constantly moving towards them. 

Join all these women and take part in Clinique’s Face Forward campaign. Make a promise to your future self and share your pledge with Clinique UK with #faceforward

Like this? Then you might also be interested in:

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What Were The Women’s Hour Power List Doing In Their Twenties?

Nicole Kidman On Why Tall Girls Should Never Apologise For Their Height

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