The top 10 leading ladies of Indian cinema

Bollywood has witnessed an influx of beautiful and charming female actors, right from its inception, who have contributed heavily in making it hugely popular. They have charted their own space in a largely male-dominated industry through their great personality both off-screen and on-screen. These actresses had the stardom and talent to give even the men a run for their money. Let us take a look at these iconic actresses who over these years have helped Bollywood evolve.

Madhuri Dixit-

The woman who is known as the ‘dancing queen’ of Bollywood is Madhuri Dixit. And it was not only because of her dance numbers and her inimitable expressions but for her acting talent that she made a mark in Bollywood. She has worked in the industry for about two and a half decades and has played varied characters. She has been an actor who had a blend of beauty, personality, unmatched dancing skills, acting talent and a box-office pull.


Madhubala made a mark in Bollywood in the days of black and white films. However, this did not stop her beauty from showing through. She also had fine acting skills that made the headlines. Mughal-e-Azam is still a film that people associate with Madhubala.

Sadly, she had a premature death. Her absence has made an irrevocable vacancy in Bollywood.


Nargis was the first woman to have appeared in the legendary film-maker Raj Kapoor’s films. She has been known for her performance in classics like ‘Barsaat’, ‘Shree 420’, and ‘Chori Chori’. In her times, she was also recognised abroad. The film that will forever be remembered by her admirers is ‘Mother India’ which released in 1957.


Sridevi was Madhuri’s contemporary and was the only one who had the talent to give her some tough competition. She was a versatile actor and this is evident in her choice of films like Chaalbaaz, Chandni, Mr. India, Sadma and so on.

Now she is making a comeback with the film “English Vinglish” which is one of the highly expected films of this year.

Smita Patil-

Late Smita Patil was a woman of substance. She did films that were unconventional. Her acting skills are unparalleled in the industry. She got into the skin of her characters effortlessly. In films like Arth, Mirch Masala and Bhumika she stood out for her acting ability.


Rekha is the epitome of beauty. Her strong personality shows through. She is self-made. She is known for her unmatched acting skills. She has been very private about her personal life and the media has learnt to respect that. She is this nation’s living legend and a force to reckon with.

Meena Kumari-

Meena Kumari mostly did tragedies and ironically this reflected her real life. Her personal life was tragic and she found solace in films which were an outlet to her inner emotions. She did a few light-hearted films as well to which she did full justice. It has been ages since her death but her memory will never fade from her audiences memories.

Waheeda Rehman-

She has never been portrayed as the glam doll in films. She did roles that had substance and this clearly reflects her ability to portray those characters with perfection.


Kajol is the daughter of yesteryear actress Tanuja. She mostly played non-glamorous characters in mainstream films. She is talented and a confident actress. She is married to actor Ajay Devgn but has still not bid adieu to films.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan-

Aishwarya is considered an embodiment of good looks but not at the cost of her acting abilities. She has done films like “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam” and Devdas. She is also the first actress of her generation to put India on the global map. She thus has made Bollywood reach unknown territories.
Madhuri Dixit
smitha patel
Smitha Patel
meena kumari
Meena Kumari
waheeda rehman
Waheeda Rehman
Aishwarya Rai