Meet Elle's Top Women in Television
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Unknown1 of 27
Girl Power2 of 27
On the idea that being girlie connotes weakness: "There has been a shift. I really have stood up for myself on multiple platforms. It's sort of the grown-up version of middle-school nastiness, and I'm just like, come on. If there's one thing I'd like to graduate from, it's girl-on-girl hate. I don't believe in it."
In the Timing3 of 27
On how The Mindy Project served as a distraction from her mother's death: "Any person that's been in the business knows they're lucky to have their show picked up—it happens to such a small fraction of shows. But I was lucky personally, because I needed a distraction so badly from my grief."
Child's Play4 of 27
On the conflict between being a comedian and a grown-up: "Now that I have kids, I'm up at 5:30 a.m. no matter what. Sleep at this point is just a concept, something I'm looking forward to investigating in the future. But I'd like to say that I maintain that same sense of play and creativity and spontaneity."
Check out the February issue of ELLE, on newsstands Jan. 14. And keep clicking to see these actress's style evolve over the years.
Shine On5 of 27
At a 2007 Oscars party, Deschanel wore a silver Fendi dress embellished with black floral appliques.
Black Out6 of 27
The actress dressed up a little black dress with sheer tights and a festive headpiece at the 2008 Yes Man premiere in London.
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Tight Spot7 of 27
Clearly, one of Deschanel's favorite combos is a short dress with tights, including this retro-inspired look she wore to an awards show in 2009.
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Make Waves8 of 27
At the Our Idiot Brother premiere in 2011, the star proved she can pull off a challenging silhouette in a ruffled Moschino dress.
Mad For Plaid9 of 27
Deschanel skipped a runway gown in favor of a vintage plaid dress, guaranteeing a one-of-a-kind outfit at the 2012 Writers Guild Awards.
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Lady in Red10 of 27
Deschanel didn't shy away from bold colors at the 2012 Critics' Choice Awards, wearing an Oscar de la Renta dress with a matching red lip and clutch.
Sheer Genius11 of 27
This ethereal Valentino gown, slightly sheer and embroidered with flowers, suits Deschanel's romantic sensibilities perfectly.
Ice Queen12 of 27
In an icy blue J. Mendel gown with a feminine bow, Zooey Deschanel looked elegant at last year's Emmy Awards.
Good Jeans13 of 27
Mindy Kaling looked fresh and summery in a silky camisole and boot-cut jeans at the 40-Year-Old Virgin premiere in 2005.
Give the Boot14 of 27
At an NBC event back in 2006, Kaling accented a casual dress with a bright beaded necklace and studded boots.
Think Pink15 of 27
Her hot pink tank top brightened up the red carpet at the Office premiere party in 2007.
Waist Not16 of 27
A metal belt cinched in the waist of Kaling's graceful Tadashi Shoji gown, creating a flattering silhouette at the 2011 SAG Awards.
Cream of The Crop17 of 27
In a pale two-tone MaxMara gown at the Baby2Baby Gala in 2012, the comedienne gave off a sophisticated vibe.
Seeing Spots18 of 27
The star's pin-tucked hair and red ankle boots complemented her quirky black mini at the Writers Guild Awards last February.
Blue Crush19 of 27
At a Fox party last spring, Kaling made a daring statement in a blue Jonathan Saunders dress, green belt and iridescent pumps.
Lightning Strikes20 of 27
The Mindy Project star chose a fashion-forward Kenzo ensemble for a luncheon in Beverly Hills last November.
To a Tee21 of 27
Arriving at a Saturday Night Live afterparty in 2003, Poehler rocked a laid-back look in a graphic T-shirt, jeans and running sneakers.
Gold Standard22 of 27
At a 2004 event in New York, the star teamed a silk gold cami with black trousers for a pretty, polished look.
Twinkle, Twinkle23 of 27
At the 2011 Emmy Awards, Poehler braved a figure-hugging silhouette in a shimmery cobalt Peter Som gown.
Take the Plunge24 of 27
A year later at the Emmys, she opted for a touch of sparkle on the red carpet again in this plunging Stella McCartney halter dress.
Suit Yourself25 of 27
The TV star took a risk at last year's Golden Globes in a sharply tailored Stella McCartney tuxedo suit styled with a diamond necklace and strappy heels.
Crystal Clear26 of 27
At last year's White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, the former SNL star stunned in a beaded Basler gown—with vampy nails to boot.
Simple Things27 of 27
The Parks and Recreation actress looked sophisticated in black tights and a classic Alice & Olivia frock at the Anchorman 2 premiere late last year.