Famous Canadian Women

Canada is a country with a diverse population; it is an amalgamation of people from different cultures, races and ethnicities. Thus the Canadian woman just cannot be fitted into any boring stereotypes! Women in Canada were traditionally just expected to be wives and mothers, happily fulfilling their domestic responsibilities without nurturing any ambitions that needed them to cross the threshold. But with the advent of feminism in Canada during the 18th and 19th centuries, women began to question the limitations forced upon them and struggled hard to build their own separate identities. Adelaide Hoodless was a pioneer in women’s education and a social activist while Nellie Letitia McClung was a major figure in the Canadian suffrage movement. Once upon a time Canada had ridiculous rules regarding birth control and abortion and the lady doctor Elizabeth Bagshaw was pivotal in bringing about a change in the country’s attitude towards women’s reproductive health. Roberta Bondar is another one of the inspiring women from Canada—she is the first Canadian women to journey into space, setting a precedent for other female astronauts to follow.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Canadian Women

 1 Avril Lavigne

Avril Lavigne
50
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: September 27, 1984
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Belleville, Canada

Success came early to Canadian singer and songwriter Avril Lavigne. At fourteen, she performed with Canadian icon, Shania Twain, and at sixteen, bagged a two-album recording contract with Arista Records. Her debut album Let Go released soon, became a huge success, made her a teen idol and earned Grammy Award nominations. With subsequent albums, her popularity has only increased.

 2 Rachel McAdams

Rachel McAdams
33
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: November 17, 1978
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, Canada

Best known for her comedic and romantic film roles, Canadian actress Rachel McAdams is a very popular figure in Hollywood. Rising to fame in the 2000s, she has worked in many critically acclaimed movies. A socially responsible person, she believes in leading a lifestyle that is eco-friendly and sustainable. She is actively involved with several charities.

 3 Nina Dobrev

Nina Dobrev
73
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 31, 1989
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Sofia, Bulgaria

Nina Dobrev is one of the most popular Canadian actresses. Apart from her acting career, she is also known for her activism and charity work. She uses her fame to support several charitable causes, such as Puma’s Project Pink. Also an enthusiastic volunteer, Dobrev takes part in social movements like WE movement, Me to We, and We Day.

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 4 Celine Dion

Celine Dion
36
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: March 30, 1968
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Charlemagne, Canada

Celine Dion is a Canadian singer renowned for her powerful voice. Having sold more than 200 million records worldwide, Dion is one of the best-selling singers ever. Widely regarded as one of the most influential pop singers of her generation, Celine Dion's works have inspired other popular singers, such as Christina Aguilera, Rihanna, Jennifer Hudson, Katy Perry, and Ariana Grande.

 5 Cobie Smulders

Cobie Smulders
19
Famous As: Best Known for Her Role as 'Robin Scherbatsky' in 'How I Met Your Mother'
Birthdate: April 3, 1982
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada

Cobie Smulders is one of the most recognized celebrities across the world, thanks to her role as Robin Scherbatsky in one of the most popular TV series of all time - How I Met Your Mother. She also serves as an inspiration to people suffering from cancer as she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer when she was 25 years old.

 6 Shania Twain

Shania Twain
18
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: August 28, 1965
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Windsor, Canada

Widely regarded as the Queen of Country Pop, Shania Twain is the best-selling female artist in the history of country music, having sold more than 100 million records worldwide. She is also one of the best-selling music artists ever. According to Billboard, Shania Twain is the 13th Greatest Music Video Female Solo Artist ever.

 7 Catherine O'Hara

Catherine O'Hara
19
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: March 4, 1954
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Primetime Emmy-winning Canadian-American actor and comedian Catherine O'Hara soared to fame with the sketch-comedy show SCTV. She is known for her frequent appearances in the films of Tim Burton and Christopher Guest. She is the sister of singer Mary Margaret O'Hara and is herself a fairly decent singer.

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 8 Shay Mitchell

Shay Mitchell
20
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: April 10, 1987
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Mississauga, Canada

Shay Mitchell is a Canadian actress, entrepreneur, model, and author. She came into prominence after portraying Emily Fields in the teen drama TV series Pretty Little Liars. Also a philanthropist, Mitchell was an ardent supporter of the Somaly Mam Foundation until the non-profit organization ended its operations in 2014. She also works closely with organizations, such as The Trevor Project.

 9 Sandra Oh

Sandra Oh
24
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: July 20, 1971
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Ontario, Canada

A Canadian-American actress of Asian descent, Sandra Oh became the first Asian actress to win two Golden Globe awards and the first Asian woman to host the award ceremony. She is also the third actress of Asian origin to host the TV show, Saturday Night Live. In 2019, she was named in Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world list.

 10 Evangeline Lilly

Evangeline Lilly
12
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 3, 1979
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Fort Saskatchewan, Canada

Evangeline Lilly is a Canadian actress who has played prominent roles in films like Ant-Man and the Wasp. Also a well-known humanitarian, Lilly has made numerous trips to Rwanda, where she has touched the lives of many, as part of her charity work. She has also worked with nonprofit organizations like GO Campaign and supports Task Brasil and Sierra Club.

 11 Elisha Cuthbert

Elisha Cuthbert
16
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: November 30, 1982
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Elisha Cuthbert is best known as Kim Bauer from 24, Darcie Goldberg from Old School, and Danielle from The Girl Next Door. She was a foot model at 9. Her other notable projects include the remake of House of Wax, The Ranch on Netflix, and Happy Endings on ABC.

 12 Neve Campbell

Neve Campbell
12
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 3, 1973
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Guelph, Canada

Neve Campbell impressed fans with her performance as Sidney in the Scream franchise. She is also known for her roles in the series Party of Five and House of Cards and the film Wild Things. A trained ballerina, Neve is mostly seen in films of the thriller or horror genre.

 13 Alanis Morisette

Alanis Morisette
17
Famous As: Singer-Songwriter
Birthdate: June 1, 1974
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ottawa, Canada

Alanis Morisette is a Canadian-American singer-songwriter and actress. Renowned for her mezzo-soprano voice, Morisette has been named by Rolling Stone as the Queen of Alt-Rock Angst. A recipient of 13 Juno Awards and seven Grammy Awards, Morisette has released several successful albums, including Jagged Little Pill, which was named in Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list.

 14 Katheryn Winnick

Katheryn Winnick
13
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 17, 1977
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Etobicoke, Toronto, Canada

Canadian actor Katheryn Winnick is best known for her multiple award-nominated performance as Lagertha in Vikings. Fans also loved her as Hannah Burley in Bones and as Christine "C.G." Gavin in Wu Assassins. She has guest-starred in numerous projects and has also appeared in many short films.

 15 Anna Paquin

Anna Paquin
34
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: July 24, 1982
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Winnipeg, Canada

Anna Paquin is a New Zealand-Canadian actress. She started her career as a child actress and became the second-youngest winner in the history of the Academy Awards when she won an Oscar at the age of 11 under the Best Supporting Actress category for her performance as Flora McGrath in Jane Campion's 1993 period drama film The Piano.

 16 Emily VanCamp

Emily VanCamp
18
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: May 12, 1986
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Port Perry, Canada

Emily VanCamp is a Canadian actress best known for playing Sharon Carter / Agent 13 in superhero films like Captain America. Trained in tap dance, ballet, jazz, and hip-hop, VanCamp believes that she would have continued dancing had she not gone into acting. She also credits her training in dance with helping her through her action sequences in films.

 17 Joni Mitchell

Joni Mitchell
11
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: November 7, 1943
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Macleod, Canada

Joni Mitchell is one of the most popular Canadian singer-songwriters. Widely regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, her songs reflect her feelings about joy, romance, disillusionment, and confusion. Apart from being a musician, Joni is also a visual artist who designs most of her album covers. In fact, she calls herself a painter derailed by circumstance.  

 18 Kristin Kreuk

Kristin Kreuk
9
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 30, 1982
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada

Kristin Kreuk is one of the most popular actresses from Canada. After establishing herself as a successful actress in both American and Canadian entertainment industries, Kristin Kreuk was made the spokesmodel for Neutrogena's new worldwide advertising campaign.

 19 Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood
14
Famous As: Poet, Novelist, Literary Critic & Environmental Activist
Birthdate: November 18, 1939
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Ottawa, Canada

Margaret Atwood is a Canadian poet and novelist. Her works encompass themes, such as religion and myth, climate change, and gender and identity. An award-winning writer, many of Atwood's works have been made into films and television series; her work, The Handmaid's Tale, has had several adaptations. Perhaps, Margaret Atwood's most important contribution is her invention of the LongPen device.

 20 Nora Fatehi

Nora Fatehi
91
Famous As: Dancer & Actress
Birthdate: February 6, 1992
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Nora Fatehi is a popular figure in the Indian film industry. Although born and raised in Canada. Nora has worked in Malayalam, Telugu, and Hindi language films. She was part of one of the highest-grossing Indian films ever - Baahubali: The Beginning. Apart from appearing in films, she has also made a mark in the TV industry.

 21 Sarah Chalke

Sarah Chalke
8
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 27, 1976
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Ottawa, Canada
Sarah Chalke is best known for her roles of Stella Zinman in How I Met Your Mother, Dr. Elliot Reid in Scrubs, and Becky in Roseanne. She voiced Beth Smith in Rick and Morty. After losing her grandmother and aunt to breast cancer, she started spreading awareness about the disease.

 22 Kim Cattrall

Kim Cattrall
22
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 21, 1956
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Liverpool, England

Popular as Samantha Jones from the hit series Sex and the City, Golden Globe-winning actor Kim Cattrall found it difficult to recreate the same magic on screen, barring her performance in the 2014 comedy Sensitive Skin. Her comeback with the Fox series Filthy Rich in 2020 was commendable.

 23 Stana Katic

Stana Katic
3
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: April 26, 1978
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Hamilton, Canada

Stana Katic is a Canadian-American actress known for playing Kate Beckett on the crime-comedy-drama TV series Castle. Apart from acting in films and TV series, Katic also works toward protecting the environment; in 2010, she established the Alternative Travel Project, which encourages people to abandon personal vehicles for a day to reduce the impact of personal vehicles on the environment.

 24 Jennifer Tilly

Jennifer Tilly
10
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: September 16, 1958
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States

Jennifer Tilly is an American actress whose performance as Tiffany Valentine in the popular horror slasher film series, Child's Play, established her as an icon within the horror film community. Also a popular poker player, Jennifer Tilly became the first celebrity to triumph in a World Series when she won the World Series of Poker bracelet.

 25 Carrie-Anne Moss

Carrie-Anne Moss
11
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 21, 1967
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Burnaby

 26 Nelly Furtado

Nelly Furtado
7
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: December 2, 1978
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Nelly Furtado is a Portuguese-Canadian record producer and singer-songwriter. Known for her constant reinvention and musical versatility, Furtado is one of the most successful musical artists from Canada, having sold more than 40 million records. Her work has also inspired fellow musicians like Dua Lipa and Bridgit Mendler. Also a philanthropist, Furtado is a member of Artists Against Racism charity.

 27 Missy Peregrym

Missy Peregrym
9
Famous As: Actress, Model
Birthdate: June 16, 1982
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada
Canadian actor and former model Melissa Peregrym is best known as Andrea "Andy" McNally from Rookie Blue and as Haley Graham from the film Stick It. Fans also loved her in her Streamy Award-winning role in the web series Cybergeddon. She collaborated with TOMS to provide shoes to the underprivileged.

 28 Carly Rae Jepsen

Carly Rae Jepsen
6
Famous As: Singer, Songwriter
Birthdate: November 21, 1985
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Mission, Canada

Canadian singer, songwriter, and actress Carly Rae Jepsen has been active in show business since 2007. Interested in music from an early age, she pursued musical theatre at the Canadian College of Performing Arts. She held a series of odd jobs before getting a break as a singer and actress. She is the winner of three Juno Awards.

 29 Pamela Anderson

Pamela Anderson
37
Famous As: Actress, Model
Birthdate: July 1, 1967
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Ladysmith, Canada

Actress and model, Pamela Anderson, is known as a sex symbol. She featured regularly in the Playboy magazine and acted in television series Home Improvement, Baywatch and VIP. Baywatch was hugely popular and gave her international recognition. Pamela Anderson has also acted in several films. She is an active member of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the animal rights organisation.

 30 Tatiana Maslany

Tatiana Maslany
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: September 22, 1985
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Regina, Canada

Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany began her career as a child star and continued acting throughout high school. By the time she turned 20, she already had a decade of acting experience and found it easy to bag good roles in major TV shows. She also acts in films but is more popular as a TV actress.

 31 Margot Kidder

Margot Kidder
5
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 17, 1948
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Yellowknife, Canada
Died: May 13, 2018

Margot Kidder is best remembered for her roles as Lois Lane in the Superman movie franchise and as Kathy Lutz in The Amityville Horror. Fans also loved her in the hit Broadway play The Vagina Monologues. She was a vocal anti-war and pro-environment activist. She eventually died by suicide.

 32 Emmanuelle Chriqui

Emmanuelle Chriqui
7
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 10, 1975
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada

Emmanuelle Chriqui is a Canadian model and actress. She is known for portraying important roles in films like You Don't Mess with the Zohan. Also known for her good looks, Emmanuelle Chriqui was voted the Most Desirable Women of 2010 in a poll conducted by a free online men's web portal called AskMen.

 33 Tara Strong

Tara Strong
12
Famous As: Voice Actor
Birthdate: February 12, 1973
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Tara Strong has voiced countless animated characters, such as Dil Pickles in Rugrats, Bubbles in The Powerpuff Girls, and Twilight Sparkle in My Little Pony. She has also voiced for video games such as Mortal Kombat X. She now runs VoiceStarz, a company that helps people build careers in voice-acting.

 34 Yvonne De Carlo

Yvonne De Carlo
7
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: September 1, 1922
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada
Died: January 8, 2007

Canadian-American actress, dancer, and singer, Yvonne De Carlo, was an internationally known Hollywood film star in the 1940s and 1950s. Born to an ambitious mother, she was groomed for a career in the show business from her childhood. She began her career as a dancer and eventually started acting. She had an extensive career spanning over five decades.

 35 Winnie Harlow

Winnie Harlow
15
Famous As: Model
Birthdate: July 27, 1994
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Mississauga, Canada

Winnie Harlow is a Canadian model and spokeswoman on vitiligo. After gaining prominence as one of the contestants of America's Next Top Model in 2014, Harlow went on to model for clothing brands. An inspiration to people living with vitiligo, Winnie Harlow was honored with the Role Model award at the Portuguese GQ Men of The Year event in 2015.

 36 Maitreyi Ramakrishnan

Maitreyi Ramakrishnan
20
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 28, 2001
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

 37 Mackenzie Davis

Mackenzie Davis
16
Famous As: Actress, Producer
Birthdate: April 1, 1987
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada

Mackenzie Davis is a Canadian actress who made headlines after being cast in the popular science-fiction film Terminator: Dark Fate. In the film, she played a super soldier from the future. Mackenzie Davis serves as an inspiration to many young aspiring actors and actresses from Canada.

 38 Lilly Singh

Lilly Singh
12
Famous As: YouTuber, Comedian
Birthdate: September 26, 1988
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Scarborough, Toronto, Canada

Canadian YouTuber, comedian, and talk show host, Lilly Singh, is one of the world's highest-earning YouTubers. The recipient of four Streamy Awards and two Teen Choice Awards, she is an icon for women of Asian descent across the globe. She is also the author of a best-selling book. The multifaceted personality is also an actress.

 39 Katherine Ryan

Katherine Ryan
5
Famous As: Comedian, Actress
Birthdate: June 30, 1983
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sarnia, Ontario, Canada

Canadian comedian Katherine Ryan initially worked at a restaurant to support her education and then stepped into open mic and comedy nights. She has performed across Canada and the UK and even at the LA-based Comedy Store. Now an actor, too, she is also a 2-time skin cancer survivor.

 40 Emily Rickards

Emily Rickards
3
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: July 24, 1991
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Vancouver, Canada
Canadian actor Emily Rickards gained fame as Felicity Smoak from the series Arrow and later reprised the role in the Arrowverse TV franchise shows The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow, and voiced the character in the web series Vixen. She has also supported philanthropic ventures such as AARDA

 41 Natasha Henstridge

Natasha Henstridge
6
Famous As: Actress, Model
Birthdate: August 15, 1974
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Springdale, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
Canadian actor Natasha Henstridge is best known for her performances in the Species movies. She was also part of the films The Whole Nine Yards and Would Be Kings, winning the Gemini Award for the latter. She has also appeared in the series Eli Stone and The Secret Circle.

 42 A.J. Cook

A.J. Cook
3
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: July 22, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Oshawa, Canada

A.J. Cook is a Canadian actress best known for playing Jennifer Jareau in the popular crime drama TV series, Criminal Minds. A multi-talented personality, Cook is also a tap dancer. Also known for her good looks, Cook became a spokeswoman for the popular skin-care brand, Proactiv, in 2013 and was named in the Maxim Hot 100 list in 2014.

 43 Lauren Holly

Lauren Holly
15
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 28, 1963
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bristol, Pennsylvania, United States
Lauren Holly is best known for her award-winning performance as Maxine Stewart in Picket Fences and her Emmy-nominated role as Julie Chandler in All My Children. She initially gained fame with the Jim Carrey-starrer Dumb and Dumber. She and her father established the “A" Fund in her brother’s honor.

 44 Emily Hampshire

Emily Hampshire
14
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 29, 1981
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Montreal

Emily Hampshire is one of the most popular actresses from Canada. During Telefilm Canada's maiden Tribute To Canadian Talent event in 2012, Emily was honored with the first Birks Canadian Diamond award. Identifying herself as pansexual, Emily Hampshire got engaged to transwoman Teddy Geiger, only to end their engagement after seven months. In 2014, she became a naturalized US citizen.

 45 Emma Portner

Emma Portner
21
Famous As: Dancer
Birthdate: November 26, 1994
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ottawa

Emma Portner is a popular dancer and choreographer, who has choreographed music videos for celebrities like Justin Bieber. One of the few dancers to have been featured on the covers of both Dance Magazine and Dance Spirit, Portner serves as an inspiration to the LGBT community as she publicly married actress Ellen Page in 2018.

 46 Tricia Helfer

Tricia Helfer
3
Famous As: Actress best known for her roles on the sci-fi television show Battlestar Galactica
Birthdate: April 11, 1974
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Donalda, Canada

Tricia Helfer is a Canadian actress and model. She gained international fame after portraying the enigmatic Cylon model Number Six in the Battlestar Galactica TV series. She began her career as a model and won the Ford Models' Supermodel of the World contest in 1992. Later on, she quit modeling to pursue a full-time acting career. 

 47 Annie Murphy

Annie Murphy
18
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: December 19, 1986
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ottawa Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

 48 Italia Ricci

Italia Ricci
5
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 29, 1986
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Richmond Hill, Canada

Canadian actor Italia Ricci is best known for her Golden Maple Award-nominated performance as April Carver in the series Chasing Life. Fans also loved her as Emily Rhodes in the political drama Designated Survivor and as Maggie Winnock in Unnatural History. She has also appeared in many Hallmark TV movies.

 49 Trish Stratus

Trish Stratus
6
Famous As: Professional wrestler
Birthdate: December 18, 1975
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Canadian fitness model and former wrestler Trish Stratus is known for her stint with WWF (later renamed WWE). The Diva of the Decade and three-time WWE Babe of the Year has also been a WWE Hardcore Champion. She also became the first female to earn the Lou Thesz Award.

 50 Amanda Todd

Amanda Todd
5
Famous As: Committed Suicide Due to Bullying
Birthdate: 1996 AD
Birthplace: Canada
Died: October 10, 2012
Amanda Todd was a Canadian student who committed suicide at 15. She posted a YouTube video before hanging herself, describing how a man she had met online had posted obscene photos of hers on Facebook and had blackmailed her. Her death led to Bill C-13 and the Amanda Todd Trust.

There is no dearth of multi-talented women in this country, women who have impacted more than one area with their contributions. Browse on to discover many more fascinating details about the famous women of Canada.