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Niecy Nash and Jessica Betts make history as first same-sex couple to grace ‘Essence’ cover

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ROBERT ECTOR/ESSENCE

Niecy Nash and Jessica Betts are making history as the first same-sex couple to grace the cover of Essence magazine. 

Nash, 52, and Betts, 39, who wed in 2020, appear on the March/April cover of magazine topless as they lovingly gaze at each others’ faces. Now, the two are opening up about the historic cover and the powerful message behind it. 

“What I am hoping happens with our cover is that it will normalize people just loving who they love and not having to explain it or defend it but just do it,” Nash told Entertainment Tonight on Thursday.

Betts shared the same sentiment, adding, “Spreading love and supporting each other, you know, it’s a beautiful thing to be able to support each other…so I think this message is very clear that we should love and support each other regardless of our race, gender, or sexualities.”

In the cover story, Nash says of her wife, “The least of my attraction is gender…What I was and am still attracted to is Jessica’s soul. She was the most beautiful soul I had ever met in my life. Now that I’ve experienced it, I can’t imagine going through life without it.”

The March/April 2022 “Black Women in Hollywood” issue of Essence hits newsstands March 1.

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