Every single girl and lots of boys remember growing up on a staple diet of Disney heroes and heroines, and more specifically, Disney Princesses. However, Disney was soon under fire for having female leads that needed to be rescued by men. So they pull up their socks and come up with much stronger female leads who are strong willed and rebellious, don’t need a man and definitely don’t need to be rescued. No matter what, Disney has created so many fabulous female characters who have made our life so wonderful.
Female Disney Cartoon Characters
Elsa from Frozen
Yes, yes, we can see the eyes rolling. But come on! You know this list would be incomplete without her. Elsa shows millions of little girls around the world that family comes first, and that you definitely cannot marry a man you’ve just met (haha Disney).
Fa Mulan from Mulan
Mulan was a badass way before Elsa. She shows that you don’t need a man in your life to be happy! The girl saves an entire Chinese dynasty. How much more heroic can one get? Because she is a woman, she is constantly undermined by everybody around her, including the Huns. But clever Mulan uses this to her advantage to trick the very people who think her useless!
Nala from Lion King
And who says female Disney cartoon characters have to be human? Nala is a no-nonsense girl who doesn’t think twice before putting the future king (Simba) in his place for coming up with silly excuses for not going back home. She’s his rock solid support, and is the one who made him realize his true path. Without her, the entire Simba's Pride would have just vanished thanks to Scar and his manipulative nature.
Dory from Finding Nemo
Yet another non-human Disney character, who is as popular as Nemo, if not more. She’s a simple fish who is very helpful by nature. And even though she gets into trouble a lot, it’s her affable nature that always helps her in the end – and also lets her make friends wherever she goes. In fact, due to her popularity, Disney comes up with a sequel Finding Dory. And who can forget her famous words "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming".
Pocahontas from Pocahontas
Yes sure, the coloured lady falls in love with a white man, but come on. How does that negate all the badassery that she does? She’s intelligent, curious and has a heart of gold. She loves nature and her family, and would go to any lengths to protect them. So let’s celebrate female Disney cartoon characters like her!
Marie from Aristocats
A romantic at heart, this sassy little kitten is blunt to the point of being called ill-mannered, but she doesn’t care! She holds her own in a male dominated community and kicks ass whenever required.
Rapunzel from Tangled
Even though she’s always been under the thumb of her “loving” “mother”, Rapunzel is a girl with a lot of spunk who doesn’t think twice to get what she wants, which is a view of the floating lights on her birthday. When a seemingly nice guy enters her life, she keeps her head – instead of falling in love with him instantly, she’s suspicious of him and ONLY falls for him when he’s proved his merit and reunited her with her family. Rapunzel is exactly the type of feminist that a lot of feminine women would love to have as their role model.
Ursula from the Little Mermaid
Who says female Disney cartoon characters have to be all good in order to be appreciated? Ursula is a very strong willed woman, who learns to survive on her own by whatever means necessary. She is shrewd enough to use magic to conjure up people’s basest desires and information which she always used to her gain. In some ways, she is a stronger female lead than Ariel herself.
Tiana from The Princess and The Frog
Tiana will always be remembered as the first black girl who became Disney’s lead female character. This anti-princess believes in working hard to get to the top, and her ambition and determination are what she uses to make her dream come true – a restaurant of her own. And even though her bestie is a rich little daddy’s girl, Tiana NEVER asks her for any help –financially or otherwise. But after kissing Naveen, a prince who is transformed into a frog by an evil witch, she also becomes a frog. They experience a lot together in order to restore back to human form. At last, they succeed, become a sweet couple and open a great restaurant that Tiana always wants.
Merida from Brave
Merida has got to be one of the most strong-willed female Disney cartoon characters out there. She’s stubborn (she takes after her dad) and she refuses to do everything her mom tells her to do, just because it’s "what princesses do". This is the only Disney movie where a romantic male character is absent for the female protagonist. And Merida proves her mettle when she unites 4 warring factions of the Vikings under one roof.
More female Disney cartoon characters for You
Belle from Beauty and the Beast
Megara from Hercules
Ariel from The Little Mermaid
Anna from Frozen
Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas
Jessie from Toy Story 2
Nani from Lilo and Stitch
The fairy Flora from Sleeping Beauty
Esmerelda from The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Lady Kluck from Robin Hood