When you come from a successful line of family members, it can be hard not to feel the pressure to rise to their shine. You may feel obligated to follow in their professional footsteps or even take over the family business.

This takes on a whole new level, however, when your mother is none other than global superstar Diana Ross. However, rather than wither away in her shadow, Tracee Ellis Ross has always spoken to her mother embracing and uplifting her, celebrating all five of her children’s individuality rather than suffocating them with her stardom. So how did Ross step out on her own to build a $16 million net worth? Let’s dive in.

How Tracee Ellis Ross Built an Empire

While it’s certainly an impressive number, $16 million is not all that surprising given the amount of accomplishments Ross has accumulated over time. As an actress, she’s starred in many notable roles, from the iconic Joan Clayton in “Girlfriends” to Lisa in the Oscar-nominated American Fiction. Her most notable role, however, was unequivocally Rainbow in “Black-ish,” earning her six Emmy nominations and a Golden Globe. 

Ross’s paycheck had also doubled since she started working on the show in 2014, making $60,000 per episode during the first season to $200,000 per episode after its syndication. That adds up to a whopping $4.4 million per season. Starring in the leading role in 2020’s The High Note, she not only got to showcase her vocal talent but also brought in an impressive amount of earnings in its opening weekend. The film was the second-most rented film on FandangoNow and the third-most rented on iTunes.

Behind the camera, Ross most recently served as an executive producer on Hulu’s The Hair Tales. The project went on to earn her a NAACP Image Award nomination for Outstanding Host in a Talk or News/Information Series or Special.

She Is the Founder of Pattern Beauty

Beyond her work in film and television, Ross has found many more lucrative avenues for success. Realizing a dream come true that was decades in the making, Ross is the force behind Pattern Beauty, a hair care line that specifically caters to curls and coils. “I wanted to create a line of products that gave our hair the support it needed to be its true self,” she shares.

She’s certainly carried out that promise, and more and more beauty influencers praise the products for their quality and hair-healing abilities. Dipping her toes into an industry that’s valued at more than $2.5 billion, it has thus far been a major success and has launched in stores like Ulta Beauty and Sephora.

You Can Do It, Too

Though she comes from a warm home with resources and a loving embrace, Ross has ultimately acquired a lasting fortune completely on her own accord. She’s an independent woman who speaks to being fully in love with herself and a life lived on her own terms and conditions. While a $16 million net worth can seem like a far reach to many, Tracee Ellis Ross proves that your power lies within leaning into your individuality, even when shining amongst more stars.