You could say the reign of Sasha Colby began the minute she stomped into the Werk Room on Season 15 of RuPaul’s Drag Race—her fellow competitors gagged at the mere sight of the lauded performer.
Or perhaps you have to go further back still—she is mother, after all, from the legendary House Of Colby, with plenty of drag daughters she calls her own (including Drag Race alum Kerri Colby and Next In Fashion designer Godoy).
Regardless, Sasha Colby has been and will always be a superstar, and her crowing on Drag Race this spring only solidified that further.
And while her big moment of triumph came amid a wave of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation targeting the drag and trans communities in particular, Sasha hasn’t let that dim her shine. Instead, she’s become an even brighter beacon of hope and happiness, always there to uplift her sisters and educate the rest of us on what it looks to lead with grace.
Yes, Sasha Colby is queer resilience personified. And while we could go on and on about what makes her such a worthy Pride50 honoree this year, there’s no one that could say it better than Sasha herself.
With that in mind, we’ve assembled some of our favorites musings direct from the mouth of mother. Below, find 10 choice inspirational quotes from the queen on Pride Month, allyship, hair flips, and so much more.
Presenting: The collected wisdoms of Sasha Colby, long may she reign!
On Pride Month
@queerty Happy #Pride from #Mother: @Sasha Colby ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜 #sashacolby #lgbtq ♬ original sound – Queerty*
If you’re feeling down about the state of things this June, how about a nice pick-me-up from the queen herself? Addressing her royal subjects (that’s us—all of us) on the first of the month, Sasha posted a sweet self-taped message on TikTok that immediately put us in that loud and proud spirit. That sweet “Hi my babies!” to kick off the clip? Ugh, we could just melt. We adore her!:
“I hope to see you all out there being your lovely, beautiful, proud selves. And don’t forget: When you’re out there, let the *ssholes have it, okay?”
On Misconceptions About The Trans Community
Since her crowning, Sasha’s been showing all the girls how a winner does a press tour! When asked to be a part of Soul Of A Nation’s “The Freedom To Exist” special for Hulu, she put on her best girlboss power suit and spoke so eloquently about the limiting and wrong-headed notion that trans people don’t contribute to society, speaking truth to power about why the younger generation needs to see trans heroes in their lives:
“I think a big misconception is that we’re not contributing people to society. A lot of the time, it was you couldn’t get a job as a trans person, you can’t get insurance—you can’t get the normal things. You don’t even have the option to get married or find love. You’re always on the fringe.
And, for them to think that we at all… would want to be treated as such is crazy. The history that we have—all of the amazing tarns success stories that we have in media, in history—proves that that’s not right. It proves that we’re amazing contributors to society. We offer so much knowledge and patience and guidance, especially to younger kids—younger queer kids—that need it.”
On The Perfect Hair Whip
But you know mother still finds time to kiki. In Queerty‘s own interview with Sasha for Pride50 (seen above), the pageant professional let us in on the origins of her trademark hair flips—and shared the secret to doing so successfully:
“I see a lot of the girls going down [while] trying to whip their hair, and it’s not really a side-to-side; think of it like a figure eight. And the whole reason I kept doing that was—before I realized just don’t wear gloss on your lips when you dance—I would always have gloss and, to get the hair away from my face, I would just start whipping it. So, really, it was out of necessity, and then it just became a thing.”
On Navigating Close-Minded Family
Sasha’s long been a proponent—and a testament to the power—of chosen family. But, towards the end of her run on Drag Race, she began to open up more about her biological family. In an emotional “Tic-Tac Chat” with Ru and Michelle Visage, Sasha spoke about the tragic passing of her father, one of her few relatives who accepted her truth.
And then, joining Visage in her Whatcha Packin’ web series, Sasha expounded further on her history with her family, and shared her approach to dealing with those who would not accept her. In short: Pay them no mind, honey!:
“It’s still tricky. I just know that, with family, after being trans and being the woman that I always knew I was—for about 20 years now—if they can’t get it, then… Good on ya, kids! Lose my number. Especially after [Drag Race.]”
On How To Be An Ally
In the wake of drag bans in her home state of Tennessee, country star Maren Morris has been an outstanding ally to the LGBTQ+ community, fighting for the rights of queens and trans people everywhere.
For a special Pride Month piece with Billboard, the singer assembled Sasha and a few fellow drag world icons—including Symone, Eureka, and Dragula winning king Landon Cider—for an incredible conversation about fighting back against bigotry. In a standout moment, Sasha offered her advice to allies and how they can help support our community during this contentious time:
“What I would say for allies—I always tell my cis-het friends who have children, anyone who has kids, I say: You don’t have to go to every protest, you don’t have to go to every platform and stand on your soapbox. What you do have control over is the two kids you created, and all you can do is to leave this world a little bit better than you left it.
So make those two kids allies, make them go vote correctly. You have one vote in this country, right? And you vote for your interests. Start making your interests everyone else’s interests.”
On The Divine Māhū
Throughout her run on Drag Race, Sasha took the time to educate the world on the concept of Māhū, which originated from her native Hawaiian culture. As she explains, the term denotes a third gender, which lies between masculine and feminine—a people who were revered and upheld as teachers and healers.
After “Western” culture and religion intervened, it became a derogatory term used against the LGBTQ+ community, but it has since been reclaimed with activists like Sasha speaking to the divinity of Māhū with deep, deep roots in Indigenous culture.
And, when Ru ask Sasha about it during the Drag Race finale, Sasha even had the opportunity to speak about Māhū on national television, on one of the queer community’s biggest stages in the world:
“Mahu… is the third gender in Hawaiian culture. And people in the community trusted queer people and Oahu to handle their kids because what is more divine than knowing both feminine and masculine energy?”
On Finding Your Culture
But that wouldn’t have happened had Sasha not taken the time to reinvest in her Hawaiian heritage—and, by extension, reinvest in herself. Speaking to The Diaspora Times after her win, the queen revealed how her culture helped her find her voice as a queer person:
“I didn’t even have the knowledge to defend my Hawaiian-ness because I wasn’t taught that. So when someone teased me, I felt like, ‘I think I am’ because I don’t know anything about Hawaiian culture. After this deprogramming, I started to really delve into what is a Hawaiian. Then I realized how much queerness was a part of ancient Hawaiian culture. I understood that, I’m feeling innately is something so special. It’s something indigenous, it’s something in my DNA that it doesn’t feel like what I was taught to as a child—that it was an abomination. Finding my culture was finding the strength of my queer voice.”
On Being A Source Of Trans Joy
Fresh from her crowning, Sasha stopped by the desk of The Daily Show for an enlightening chat with guest host (and former Drag Race guest judge) Dulcé Sloan.
Among their conversation topics was Sasha’s conscious decision to show herself as a “happy trans person” in the media. In these dark times, the fight is far from over, but Sasha knows how important it can be to see trans people living happily and freely as their authentic selves, to inspire and give hope to those who need it most:
“All that media has been concerned with a lot of the time is telling the transition story—telling the trauma, telling the effect [it had] on the family, but not showing why we go through all of that. Being so adamant about making yourself feel comfortable in your own skin—that’s the whole reason why we do the transition. It isn’t to hurt or harm or traumatize our families or anyone else. It is to be our true, happy selves. And we are missing that a lot.
There are so many happy, well-adjusted, loving trans people, but you only see us getting murdered and beaten. So, [it’s about being able] to normalize the fact that you probably have come into contact with three or four trans people every day and not even known it. Because we are everywhere and we’re not going anywhere.”
On Anti-Trans Politicians
Later on in that same The Daily Show appearance, Sasha did not hold back when it came time to address the politicians who are so vocally and stridently trying to strip the trans community of their rights. And you better believe she read Ron “Don’t Say Gay” DeSantis for filth, too!:
“It’s always about these white men trying to control people’s bodies. So they’re controlling women’s reproductive rights, controlling our medicine—a basic human right of giving trans people and anyone good health care. So it’s always about controlling.
These men objectify trans women as much as the objectify cis women. So, once they objectify you and you’re living your truth, they get so mad because they’re, one, jealous that they’re not living their truth. And, two, because it makes them question: ‘Why do I like this?’ But why do you have to question that, why does that even have to be a thing?
So, for all of them—I think they just want to be in drag. Or, they probably went in drag and then they looked awful… Santos.”
On Who Really Runs The Show
And, lastly, we’ll send you off with a bop, because we simply have not gotten Sasha’s sexy, smooth, and empowering verse from the “Blame It On The Edit” Rumix challenge out of our heads. She really did crack the code with this one, and it’s been on repeat:
“Bad b*tch body, I didn’t come to play. Best believe when I step on the scene shady h*es just run away. Dream chaser, star maker, game changer, bank breaker, cracked the code—now y’all know, Sasha Colby run this show.”