She Beat The Odds: How Barbara Streisand Overcame Self-Doubt And Changed Hollywood's Beauty Standards

Date March 23, 2018

Barbara Streisand is both hated and loved in equal measure. This phenomenal American musician and actress has had a lot of controversial moments in her time.

Most notably, news surfaced recently that she had made a decision to clone her dead dog, Samantha. Needless to say, she got some backlash for that.


READ ALSO: Barbara Streisand Talked About Her First Encounter With James Brolin And What Keeps Their Marriage Strong

Mega diva

Streisand is quite the diva when she needs to be, and this sometimes gets her in trouble with her fans. But, there are times when her actions are entirely called for.

For instance, in a 2016 interview with the host of 60 Minutes, Michael Archer, she wasted no time in setting him straight when he mispronounced her surname. The iconic singer spent a few minutes ensuring that he got her name right before the interview progressed.

Hate her or love her, she is not unlike our modern day singers whose shade throwing game we applaud.


Singers like Nicki Minaj are loved for their ability to call out transgressors without batting an eyelid. And the Queen Bey herself, Beyonce, may not engage with the press a lot, but she wastes no time to set the record straight in her lyrics.

Dealing with self-doubt.

The Brooklyn-born 72-year-old Streisand remains one of the culturally relevant female musicians in recent history. And she had a lot of naysayers who told her she would not make it because she did not "look a certain way". 

She is credited with altering the standards of beauty in Hollywood. And, the film critic, Pauline Kael, said with her role in Funny Girl, Streisand proved that talent is beauty.

READ ALSO: Oscars And Gender Prejudice: Barbra Streisand Talks On Her Long Battle With Hollywood’s Boys’ Club

Streisand, who has talked about her struggle with self-doubt in the past, says she only turned to music because she was frustrated with her acting career.

She proved her doubters wrong and went on to win an Oscar for her performance in the 1968  film, Funny Girl.

Game changer

The iconic singer did not always feel a sense of ownership of the change she helped create in Hollywood. But, in an interview with CBS Sunday Morning, she echoed the film critic, Kael, when she said:

I think talent is one beauty. But then there’s beauty.


Streisand and the women before her paved the way for younger women to embrace themselves. Now more opportunities are available to women of different sizes, races and sexuality. Good work Streisand!

READ ALSO: Frank Ocean Drops A Gorgeous Cover Of ‘Moon River’, And A Lot Of People Mistook It For An Original Track