All hail the new cover of ‘Essence!’ (and all our ‘OITNB’ faves)

Tomorrow is a week until season three of Orange Is The New Black. And we at HG are seriously pumped. Somehow, we’ve managed to wait an entire year, and now it’s June, and OMG guys, we can’t wait to see what happens after that fabulous season two finale.

That’s why we pretty much screamed with excitement when we saw ESSENCE‘s July cover. Uzo Aduba, Danielle Brooks, Laverne Cox, Vicky Jeudy, Adrienne C. Moore, and Samira Wiley are totally shining, looking totally gorg in the show’s signature color. I mean, seriously, look at the amazingness.

This is the magazine’s annual Body issue, which highlights self-image, confidence, and diverse bodies. We can totally get behind that. So their third annual issue “spotlights the many shapes and sizes of beauty we find on the Netflix hit series, Orange Is the New Black,” according to ESSENCE. As always, the ladies are looking totally wonderful, and seeing their glowing faces just makes us more excited for June 12th.

Though the issue comes out next month, ESSENCE gave us a little taste of what the OITNB stars had to say about their own self-esteem and bodies. For the fabulous Laverne Cox, who plays Sophia Burset in the series, it was a bit of a learning process. “This is intense, and it’s hard,” she told the magazine. “What I’ve been doing is looking in the mirror and listing all the things I have an issue with and then saying, ‘This is beautiful.’ I just go down the list and tell myself, ‘You have to accept that this is you today.’ I make time to do this.”

The amazing Danielle Brooks, who plays “Taystee” Jefferson, said that being her size is “so rare” in the television industry, “but regular people look more like me than runway models. To show beauty in a different way really lights me up inside. That’s so cheesy, but it does.” (It lights us up, too!)

Uzo Aduba, who plays Suzanne (aka “Crazy Eyes”) Warren, admitted that she had a hard time embracing her smile–the smile we all know and love. “For the majority of my first 18 years, I hated my gap,” she explained to ESSENCE. “My mom would tell me that in Nigeria, it’s a sign of beauty. I was like, ‘We’re in Massachusetts.’” But she’s since learned to love what makes her unique. “Today there’s not a selfie or personal photo I take where I’m not smiling wide. It sometimes feels as if I’m making up for lost smiles.”

We totally love our fave OITNB stars baring all to help readers who may be going through the same body confidence issues. Thank you, ladies. . . and we’ll be waiting on the edge of our seats until June 12th!

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