Up to 75 percent of all women have a best friend – a role that inspires the highest level of acceptance, loyalty, commitment and advocacy. Research has proven that the ties that bind close female friends can often be stronger that those that women have lovers, husbands and even blood relations.
Jan Yager, a US author of several books on friendship, says trust, empathy, honesty, confidentiality, commonality and the ability to listen are essential to healthy friendships. She believes that to go far in life, women must have valued, caring, loyal and trustworthy friends to help them along the way and encourage them to enjoy their journey.
To celebrate International Friendship Day on July 30, here are some adorable female celebrity BFFs that are the definition of friendship goals:
Text: Natalya Molok, Gwen Ng & Elizabeth Liew; Gif from GIPHY
Yoo In Na & IU
Physical age is no barrier to friendship. South Korean celebs Yoo In Na and IU were born 11 years apart, but mentally they’re on the same page. Calling IU her soulmate, 37-year-old In Na says, “A lot of people are curious as to how we can be so close despite our age gap, but we believe that age doesn’t really matter as long as we can relate to each other and we both feel at ease around each other.”
Work brought the BFFs together. In 2010, they made a connection while guesting on variety show Heroes in 2010. They can chat for hours on end. But they respected each other’s need for privacy. That explains their living arrangements within the same apartment complex. Actress-singer IU, 26, explains: “We are neighbours. We both like to have alone time, so we don’t live together.”
Being BFFs has also brought in work. A Hyundai commercial gives us a glimpse into the everyday lives of the beautiful pals. Cast as themselves, they’re seen taking a drive around town, hanging out at a record shop and shopping in a quaint boutique.
“We’re just a regular pair of best friends.. When I’m with IU, we usually eat and chat,” said In Na, who is also an actress.
You can’t blame us for thinking otherwise. Their beautiful friendship is BFFs goals. The singletons spent Valentine’s Day together and bought matching friendship rings inscribed with their names.
During her acceptance speech at Melon Music Awards 2017, IU said, “I know that she is not my family by blood, but I thank my number one fan, a best friend, and my muse Yoo In Na as well.”
Ya Hui & Chen Liping
When Ya Hui first met Chen Liping in 2007, she was “ordered” to wipe the table. But the veteran actress wasn’t bullying the newbie. Liping was teaching the Star Search contestant the basics of acting.
“When you start to pick up acting, you’ve got to start from the most common things, (such as) what you’ll do in daily life, and you’ve got to do it naturally,” said Ya Hui, 32, whose mentor was Liping, 53, during the TV talent search program.
The table wiping exercise came in handy later on in Ya Hui’s acting career. Ya Hui played Hong Jin Zhi, a wanton mee seller in the long-form drama 118. And as a hawker, you clean tables.
The beloved character earned Ya Hui first Best Actress nomination at the 2016 Star Awards. She credits Liping for the bringing the character to life.
“She went through every single scene, every single line , every gesture. Jin Zhi’s success is all because of her. Without my mentor, Jin Zhi would just be an ordinary character.”
The mentor-disciple relationship progressed into a friendship. The straight-talking pair grew closer over movie dates, charity work and heart-to-heart talks.
Last year, the celeb pals visited Hong Kong on a whim. They returned with Insta-worthy shots and tummies filled with egg tarts, dim sum and milk tea. You know what they say about friends who travel together? They stay together.
Despite coming from different countries (Cara’s from the UK and Rihanna’s from Barbados), the pair are tremendously close friends since their first meeting at a Victoria Secret’s show in 2013. Cara, 26, actually hit on Rihanna at the event: ”I went up to her and was like, ‘Ma’am, you are so amazing, I love you, you look so hot out there performing. You put us all to shame. Then I slapped her on the bum.”
That playful tap on the butt turned into an incredible friendship. They later worked together on the sci-fi movie, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. As adults, finding a BFF is hard. We aren’t as carefree as we were as kids. We’re hardened by the complex politics of making friends as adults.
That’s why bad girl Ri Ri knows she’s lucky to have Cara. Ri Ri, 31, said:”If you have two or three friends like that in this world, then you can call yourself blessed. She is very special to me.”
“We have busy schedules but no matter where either of us are in the world, we know we can just pick up the phone and unload on each other, and that we are always ready to listen or offer advice.
Cara returned the compliment in an IG post to celebrate Rihanna’s 30th birthday (pictured above). The collage is of the RiRi and Cara looking amazing in any situation, with any expression, in any outfit.
Fan Bingbing & Zhao Wei
Ever since they starred together in the smash hit “My Fair Princess” in 1998, Fan Bingbing and Zhao Wei have been like sisters. The actresses have gone on to achieve regional and global fame but still find time to hang out together. They reunited at Ruby Lin’s (their mutual friend) wedding in Bali.
Photo: Lollipop SG
Jade Seah & Jaime Teo
TV personality Jade Seah and FLY Entertainment artiste and fitness guru Jaime Teo may be very different personality-wise, but their friendship runs deep. The bubbly pair, have known each other for over ten years but only became close in the last few, revealed to us that their friendship is “very real, which is hard to find in [the media] industry”. Read more about their adorable and “easy friendship” in this interview with us for International Friendship Day last year!
Gao Yuanyuan & Alyssa Chia
A-list Chinese actresses Gao Yuanyuan and Alyssa Chia met 13 years ago on the set of the C-drama adaptation of wuxia novel Heavenly Sword and Dragon Sabre. Their friendship has stood the test of time even through marriages and babies!
The trio are probably best known for their roles, Phoebe, Monica and Rachel, in hit TV show Friends, which followed a group of mates and their shenanigans over a period of 10 years. Their friendship in real life has lasted much, much longer with Jen even appointing Courteney her bridesmaid for her first wedding to Brad Pitt.
They reunited in June 2019 to celebrate Courteney’s 55th birthday. Courteney posted the above Instagram photo, saying, “How lucky am I to celebrate my birthday with these two??? I love you girls. So much ♥️”. We want a long-lasting friendship like theirs too!
What’s better than having a BFF? It’s having three BFFs. That’s why we’re super envious of gal pals Barbie Hsu, Dee Hsu, Aya Liu and Mavis Fan. The tight bunch can currently be seen on Friends On The Go, a Chinese travel reality show.
Sure, Myanmar’s unspoiled nature and cultural sights are breathtaking. But we’re also watching for the girlfriends’ hilarious banter, heartwarming gestures and honest conversations.
The stars, who are successful actresses, singers and hosts in their own right, enjoy an enduring friendship that is a feat in show business. All in their early forties, they’ve known each for over 20 years.
Barbie, 42, and Dee, 41, are real sisters, who attended Taipei Hwa Kang Art School with Aya, 40. The good-natured Aya is often the target of Dee’s jibes, ranging from calling Aya a man to accusing her of using botox.
Addressing bullying concerns on the show, Aya says, “Friends have their own special way of getting along with one another. We’ve known each other for 20 years. If I’ve been bullied, how could we be friends for 20 years?”
Mavis, 42, was inducted into the group by Dee, via a very interesting manner. You might want to learn some conversational tips on how to kickstart a deep and meaningful relationship.
Dee says, ”I really wanted to make friends with Mavis. I mustered my courage to talk to her, and I went over to ask her how do you groom your armpit hair. It’s an intimate topic which will help you get close.”
Naomi Watts & Nicole Kidman
Naomi and Nicole are two Aussie actresses who made it in Hollywood with the added bonus of being best friends too. They’ve known each other since meeting as classmates in high school and their friendship has stood the test of time as well as the volatile world of showbusiness.
Naomi, 50, recently shared a throwback snapshot of the twosome in honour of her BFF’s 52nd birthday. She writes, “Happy Birthday to my extraordinary friend @nicolekidman. Growing up with you, having you close, has been one of the more meaningful aspects of this journey. My love, respect and admiration for you is next level. Keep being the inspiration that you are. Let’s take up Bridge or Bingo soon. I love you madly, deeply.” So sweet!
Oprah and her best friend, Gayle King, have a well-documented friendship on and off the screen. They have been BFFs for over 35 years and that friendship train doesn’t look like it’s stopping anytime soon. Interestingly, when they’re not spending time traipsing across the world together, the duo reportedly call each other on the phone up to four times a day.
These two best friends are so close they almost look a little bit alike, don’t you think? Tamia was one of a handful of celebrities in Ruby’s intimate circle of friends that was on hand to help the glowing bride at her 2016 wedding in Bali. We bet she was one of the first to know about Ruby’s bun in the oven too!
Photo: Lollipop SG
Tina Fey & Amy Poehler
The best friends that all best friends want to be on this list, Tina and Amy navigated the tough world of stand-up comedy together for 20 years but both came out relatively unscathed and with a loyal following to boot. Arguably two of TV’s most beloved comic actresses, Tina and Amy have continued to delight audiences with their hosting gigs at the Golden Globes and with their on-screen antics in movies like Sisters.
Another pair of lookalike best friends, Tong Liya and Dong Xuan are both Chinese actresses who are best known for their TV roles. Not much is known about their friendship but they must be pretty close because when Tong Liya married her sweetheart, Chen Sicheng, in Tahiti in 2014 guess who was on the guest list? Yup, that’s right, none other than Dong Xuan.
This friendship was a fast one — it went from zero to “we’re making a movie together” in less than three months and apparently Jen made the first move. “I emailed her after I saw Trainwreck and said, I don’t know where to get started. I guess I should just say it: I’m in love with you,” JLaw recalls. “We started emailing, and then emailing turned to texting.” The rest, they say, was history.