Stephanae McCoy


“The people we were prior to our sight loss and the things that brought us joy are still intrinsic to who we are today. We just found ways to adapt so we could keep moving forward” ~Stephanae McCoy

Stephanae (Steph) McCoy is a successful businesswoman, style setter, blogger and abilities crusader who breaks the myth that “blind people can’t be fashionable.” As a blind woman who happens to love fashion and style, Ms. McCoy founded boldblindbeauty.com, a successful website that brings women together to share in the beauty of fashion and style, provides a community that encourages empowerment and camaraderie, and makes a connection between the sighted and non-sighted worlds eradicating misconceptions and long-held stereotypes about people with vision loss.

The mission of boldblindbeauty.com is to improve humanity by changing the way we perceive one another. The site is personified by Ms. McCoy’s alter ego, Abigale (Abby), the stylish on-the-move fashion icon who walks in confidence, reflecting the beauty of all blind and visually impaired sisters. The site also includes an online e-commerce boutique component with Abigale Style that makes available stylish apparel designed by visually impaired women for both sighted and non-sighted women.

When Ms. McCoy lost her eyesight as a mildly seasoned professional, she quickly learned that thriving within the sighted world meant overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles – the most significant being the misconceptions around sight loss, blindness and the capabilities of blind people. She accomplished this while successfully serving at the largest of the Big Four accounting firms after her sight loss. Ms. McCoy’s career success was built upon a solid foundation of perseverance and a strong work ethic that together helped her foster a positive environment motivating her teams to deliver a high level of customer service.

Ms. McCoy’s love of personal style began when she was young where she honed the ability to present a self-assured, polished image as her personal trademark, contributing in part to her successful business career. Later on, while researching the viability of a business focused on serving women with disabilities, Ms. McCoy discovered that the high number of disabled working-age women – particularly those who were vision-impaired, had a high unemployment rate disproportionate to women without disabilities. Around that time, when giving a presentation to vision-impaired women on applying makeup – the light bulb went on: she realized that there was an underserved community of blind women interested in fashion and style, paving the way for her style blog boldblindbeauty.com.

With her combined business acumen, commitment to disability advocacy and enthusiasm for style, she was able to develop today’s successful boldblindbeauty.com where she now devotes most of her time managing the business and her blog – while at the same time continuing her advocacy of empowering blind women interested in fashion. To date, the blog has reached more than 61,000 site visits and continues to flourish, gaining the attention of a growing list of advertisers. Within two years she’s already looking to hire a marketing specialist, publicist, and social media strategist to take the company to the next level.

Ms. McCoy found that although she has lost her eyesight, she has not lost her vision of helping visually impaired women be all they can be. When the focus is placed on abilities versus disabilities – anything is possible. Ms. McCoy can be reached at smccoy@boldblindbeauty.com.

216 thoughts on “Stephanae McCoy”

  1. I found you by way of another blog I follow you popped up in my reader and now I will be popping in and out often. I can’t imagine how scary it must have been and probably still sometimes is. But that doesn’t mean that a sighted person won’t enjoy what you have to say. I hope you get to read some of my stories and join in. Pleased to meet youSteph.

  2. Wow, what a story. I am wondering do you have some sight? Perhaps only off to the sides. As I am curious how you post? With speech type ability programs???

    It’s so true if you a interested/passionate about something… In life you will always end up working with what you want, if you want it enough.

    Regards Louisa 🙂

    1. Hi Louisa, thank you for visiting my blog. I do have some residual vision. As a matter of fact according to VisionAware.org the estimated percentage of people who are “totally without sight” or no light perception is 15%—the remaining 85% of all individuals with eye disorders have some remaining sight. In the past I’ve used ZoomText (screen magnifier & reading software) however with Windows 10 I use the built-in software and a 32″ monitor. It’s one of those things that people have a hard time understanding, that we have vision issues yet we can use smart phones and other technology. I have totally blind friends who use iPhones like it’s nobody’s business and this speaks to the point that I fight for and that is, placing the focus on abilities not disabilities. With few exceptions, there are blind people who serve in just about any occupation one can imagine.

  3. I’m giving this site link to my neighbor. Oh man. She’s new to her loss of sight, angry, needs her daughter to do a lot of things and has yet to find her abilities. I think this will be so encouraging to her. I have chills My Lady, because this will be so helpful to her.
    We all wish to be dignified no matter our state of living. Paying attention to our hygiene and appearance can make a world of difference in how we feel about ourselves and how we present ourselves to the world. Good work! Thank you.

    Faith (Fibromyalgia, Lupus)

    1. Hi Faith, thank you so much for coming here, reading and for your comment. I saw an article recently where it was summarized that given the choice people would endure just about anything rather than sight loss. Living with it myself I think we place way too much emphasis on the loss which encourages us to lose sight of who we are as individuals. Sight loss is very challenging and you come across situations that you’d never give a second thought to if your vision is intact. There are still days where I get frustrated because my limited vision keeps me from comprehending that a person across the hallway is speaking directly to me-this actually happened to me yesterday. I can honestly say that I am so grateful for my remaining eyesight and that it allows me to continue to promote awareness and prove that when the focus is placed on abilities we can surpass even our wildest expectations.

      1. Hi Steph! That’s fine :). I just wanted to recognize you for having a lovely blog because you do. I am thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers. I hope you will have a wonderful weekend! <3

  4. Oh Steph, can I be so lucky to meet such a beautiful lady like yourself through blogging. Wow…I’m teary eyed just reading your About page and not because you lost your sight, but because you such an beautiful inspiration and I’m just so blessed to be followed and to follow such a special wonderful person.
    Love to you!
    Chanty

  5. Hi, Stephanae! Thanks for following my blog! I read the re-blog of yours over at Kerry’s “herheadache”. I’ll look forward to reading your posts! 🙂

  6. Wow, Steph, I am so glad Danny from Dream Big led you to me! After reading just your about I am so glad to meet you. I had no idea about sight loss until a car accident about 20 years ago left me blind for a few hours. I woke up in the ambulance couldn’t see anything and I didn’t know where I was. They tried to calm me and once I was at the hospital they explained I received severe head trauma and my brain had swollen. They said the condition could last a few hours, days, weeks and there was a small chance it could be permanent. I couldn’t see them working on me or the kind nurse who held my hand as they stitched up my forehead and arm.I was so scared as I lay there all alone. Everyone was instructed to announce themselves as they came to my bedside. After what seemed like an eternity but was about 16 hours, I started seeing shadows. Even in that short time I noticed my other senses were more intense. My hearing was clearer, my sense of smell. It was very humbling. Then my Dad came to live with us for the last 4 years of his life. He was legally blind in one eye and had very little sight in the other. His hearing was going and even his hearing aids didn’t always help. He was more scared of going blind than deaf. We got him special software, a keyboard and magnifiers that assisted him with his daily routines. I was able to tell him from my limited experience that it would be okay. Thankfully, he passed away before he lost his sight completely. Thank you for being such a great example. I look forward to getting to know you better through your posts.
    Lydia!
    PS I do not wear makeup because with chronic pain and fatigue, putting it on is a real effort. You just inspired me to try next time I go out!

    1. I’m equally glad to have connected with you as well Lydia. Wow, I can’t imagine what you went through after your accident, that had to be awfully scary–thank goodness it was temporary but I bet it felt like forever while you were going through it. Losing any major sense is difficult but I think it’s especially hard when it happens later in life, afterall we grow accustomed to doing things a certain way and once a disability hits it can rob us of our independence.

      I hear you on the makeup thing and believe me I look all kinds of crazy walking around my complex with my dog because most days I don’t bother with it unless I’m taking pictures or going somewhere.

  7. “When you feel good, you look good.” Your mantra says it all- Unique and funny how people encounter leadership roles in life.Thank you for the follow- I followed you back, of course. sincerely, Edu Leon.

  8. Stephanae, I am delighted to meet you and honoured that you are following my humble blog. Thank you. You have a quiet dignity and air about you that is deeply inspiring 🙂

  9. This is so inspiring. I don’t like wearing make up and I’m not so much into fashion. But reading your “about me” and how confident you sound like, I didn’t even noticed your “blindness”. I’ll keep your quote in mind “when you feel good, you look good.” Thanks! 🙂

  10. I am so sorry that you are legally blind but I am so happy that you have taken this down turn in your life and using it as a trail of positivity. I am so happy that you found me and I can’t wait to read more of your posts.

  11. Hi Stephanae 🙂 Lovely to meet you. I had to pop over and say ‘hi’ and thank you for visiting my blog and for following me. I love your About Page, it is incredibly inspiring and am excited to follow you too. Take care and enjoy the rest of the day further. x

  12. Hello Steph! You have such inspirational articles which, I bet, comes naturally from your heart. No wonder lots of people admire you and your works. I will stay tuned for more of your encouraging posts because those are what I’ve been needing these days. Thank you! <3

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