Niecy Nash & Jessica Betts were not expecting to achieve a historical feat after they decided to tie the knot in a secret ceremony.
Yet their bold decision to choose love over any constraints earned them the title of Essence magazine’s first same-sex couple to grace their cover!
In an interview for the magazine, the lovebirds opened up about their rollercoaster romance and the nerves behind their decision to announce their marriage.
Niecy Nash And Jessica Betts’ Historical Essence Cover
On Thursday, February 24, Niecy Nash and Jessica Betts uploaded a photo of their steamy cover for Essence Magazine’s Black Women In Hollywood issue. In the image, both stars were naked.
Betts sported a low cut with her back to the camera. She gazed down with lovestruck eyes at Nash while resting her hand on her breast. The singer’s knuckles cupped her lover’s chin as though reaching for a kiss.
Nash wore long black waves and subtle makeup with a bold nude lip and looked at the camera. The title of their cover story read, “A LOVE LIKE THIS: Niecy Nash and Jessica Betts on being soulmates.”
The “Uncorked” actress uploaded the image on her Instagram page writing, “Making H E R S T O R Y 💫👑🖤 Thank you @essence for choosing The Betts as your FIRST same-sexx couple to cover your magazine!”
Betts also shared the cover on Instagram, writing, “H E R S T O R Y 🦋 Thank you @essence for allowing L❤️ve to win! First #SameSex couple to Ever grace the Cover 👽🙏🏾”
According to Essence, the couple had previously chosen to never date again before falling in love. They tied the knot on August 29, 2020, in an intimate backyard wedding in California’s Ventura County.
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Nash said that gender is the least of her attraction and she remains captivated by her partner’s most beautiful soul. She added that, after experiencing Betts soul, she could not imagine going through life without it.
The 52-year-old continued that they are highly compatible and have a lot in common. She said, “we can be around each other, work together and hang out all day. If there was a 25th hour, we would be right up in it.”
Two days after their intimate wedding, the duo left for the airport to begin their honeymoon plan of “making love all around the world.”
No one but Nash’s family and close friends knew she was married to a woman ten years her age, so she hatched a plan to avoid backlash if the news was not well received.
The couple planned to post the same wedding photo as their plane was about to take off, switch their phones to airplane mode, and escape into a technology-free paradise in Mexico. Unexpectedly, Nash found out her passport had expired at the airport.
The “Getting On” actress’s best friend Ava DuVernay suggested that the couple head to Santa Barbara. While on their road trip, the lovebirds held hands, prayed, and uploaded their infamous wedding picture.
Nash did not expect the photo to set the internet ablaze and recalled that many people believed the image was for a movie or some form of promotion. The “Never Have I Ever” actress said:
“They started calling everybody, and we were like, ‘This is insane.’ I never knew where you lay your head is such a big deal to other people. I was like, ‘People care?’”
Betts reiterated that her partner was shocked by people’s responses to their posts. She explained that though she anticipated that there would be some chatter, she didn’t expect to “break the internet.”
Behind The “Claws” Star’s Planned Exit From The Masked Singer
Nick Cannon had to stop hosting “The Masked Singer” for about half of the show’s 5th season due to his positive COVID-19 diagnosis.
The Blast disclosed that Nash took over from the rapper and quickly became a fan-favorite, earning her a grand sendoff when her time was up.
In the middle of season 5, a new masked singer named ‘Bulldog’ came on the show to give a rendition of “Candy Girl.”
The performer later revealed himself as none other than Cannon, signaling his return to the show, which Nash was aware of beforehand.