Music is there for you at all times. There are songs like shoulders to cry on, songs to get you excited, songs to help you chill out, and even tunes to help you channel anger. But, sometimes, you just need a “Me Day” with a soundtrack of songs about loving yourself.
These are the best songs about self-love and positive affirmation out there. They’re meant to be a pick-me-up and a reminder that no matter how tough things are, you have to be good to yourself.
Some are the tub of ice cream and bathrobe sort, while others are exciting and motivating workout tunes. But they’re all here to boost your confidence and help you to remember to treat yourself right. So, let’s get started with…
- Top 17 Songs About Loving Yourself
- Love Yourself – Justin Bieber
- i – Kendrick Lamar (feat. Ronald Isley)
- I Love Myself Today – Bif Naked
- Break My Stride – Matthew Wilder
- I Love Me – Demi Lovato
- Firework – Katy Perry
- Born This Way – Lady Gaga
- Be Good to Yourself – Journey
- Extraordinary Machine – Fiona Apple
- (The) Greatest Love of All – George Benson / Whitney Houston
- Pushover – Etta James
- Respect – Otis Redding / Aretha Franklin
- I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor
- Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
- True to Myself – Ziggy Marley
- Who You Are – Jessie J
- Beautiful – Christina Aguilera
- Need More Music to Lift Yourself Up?
- Songs About Loving Yourself – Final Thoughts
Top 17 Songs About Loving Yourself
Love Yourself – Justin Bieber
The first self-love song on my list is here for more than just the title. Yes, the song is called “Love Yourself,” but at first listen, it sounds more like an attack or a kiss-off song than a self-love song.
It was written by Ed Sheeran, who had the song in mind for Rihanna. And, if you’re wondering, yes, the original lyrics in the chorus said, “If you like the way you look that much, baby – You can go and f*ck yourself.”
That wouldn’t have made such a nice song title…
The song was given to the Biebs, who re-tooled it and put it out on his 2015 album Purpose. It’s a catchy, slow groove and has a great trumpet lick that I truly love. And, when you dive into the lyrics, this really is a song about loving yourself.
Bieber sings about getting over a damaging relationship and about moving on and leaving it behind. So, he’s loving himself, and while the chorus is biting, it can also be interpreted as some genuine advice to someone who needs to learn self-love.
i – Kendrick Lamar (feat. Ronald Isley)
Isn’t “i” supposed to be spelled with a capital letter? For Kendrick Lamar, the lowercase letter might represent being humble, even in a song about loving and respecting yourself.
This song comes from his hugely popular third album, To Pimp a Butterfly, which he dropped back in 2015. It was also released as a pre-album single in 2014, and these versions are quite different.
Both are fun and bouncy and perfect for getting you revved up…
This song uses a sample from the Isley Brothers’ song “That Lady,” which brings it a very funky feel. Lamar’s lyrics are all about being confident in yourself in the face of trouble.
His chorus goes, “Walk my bare feet – Down, down valley deep – Fi-fie-fo-fum (I love myself) – My heart undone (I love myself).” It gives you so much energy and motivation to remember to treat yourself right!
I Love Myself Today – Bif Naked
Bif Naked is a normally clothed Canadian Rock singer who had some big successes from the mid-90s to the mid -000s. And “I love Myself Today” is one of her bigger songs.
She put this track out in 2001 on her album Purge, which can be interpreted as getting rid of the negative things in her life. And this song means even more since her successful battle with breast cancer in 2008.
Like so much of Bif’s work…
This song is fast and energetic with a hard edge to it. But it’s still a Rock song, even if she looks like a Metal singer. This song is about a breakup, and we all know how these things can damage your self-confidence.
Instead, she sings about how it was the relationship that was damaging, and getting out of it is the best thing for her. The chorus “I love myself today – Not like yesterday – I’m cool, I’m calm – I’m gonna be okay!” is simple and straight to the punch. It’s basically a victory song.
Break My Stride – Matthew Wilder
Here’s a song we all know, but I doubt many people know who wrote it. That was Matthew Wilder back in 1983. He was a singer-songwriter who was trying to make it in the business, and this song was his only big hit.
However, he had more success behind the scenes, writing the music for Disney’s Mulan, among other works. His voice is reminiscent of Boy George, and this track has a bouncy reggae-style beat that’s pulsing with positivity.
The song “Break My Stride” is just one of those great positive, upbeat songs that help you remember to keep your head up.
This song, too, is about a breakup…
But the singer keeps it together and keeps moving on. Wilder sings the iconic chorus, “Ain’t nothin’ gonna to break my stride – Nobody gonna slow me down, oh no – I got to keep on moving,” as a mantra of self-love.
It has also been covered by many other artists and is interpolated in Puff Daddy’s first single, “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down,” and Aaron Carter in “Stride.”
I Love Me – Demi Lovato
A much newer song, Demi Lovato’s “I Love Me,” came out in 2020 and was an inspiring song for so many during the global pandemic.
In it, she sings all about beating up on herself and says, “I wonder when I love me is enough.” She also sings, “I’m my own worst critic – Talk a whole lot of shit – But I’m a ten out of ten – Even when I forget.”
Talking down to ourselves is something that we can all easily relate to, and that makes this such a relatable song about loving yourself.
This song is bouncy and upbeat…
It’s a catchy mix of Dance-Pop and Hip-Hop, and the production is slick. This gives the song a nice full sound and lots of passionate energy.
Lovato also has a heavier Rock version of the song that’s fast, like Punk Rock, which came out later the same year. It features Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker smashing the drum set and bringing huge energy to this inspiring track.
Firework – Katy Perry
Speaking of inspiring songs all about loving yourself, Katy Perry’s “Firework” is still one that goes straight to the heart, even after a decade. This song came out in 2010 on Perry’s record Teenage Dream and was a massive hit.
It hit #1 in the US and got to the Top 5 in 20 countries around the world. It has also sold over 12 million copies, making it as explosive as any firework ever.
We all know how this Dance-Pop song goes…
It starts a bit muted with a mid-tempo dance beat. But then the beat drops out, and powerful strings and synth sounds build things up. When the beat comes back in, the song is full of power and emotion.
Perry sings those memorable lines, “’Cause baby, you’re a firework – Come on, show ’em what you’re worth – Make ’em go, “Oh, oh, oh” – As you shoot across the sky” and you can’t help but believe it. Give this track a listen and see if you’re dancing your ass off by the end.
Born This Way – Lady Gaga
If it’s anthems about self-love you want, it’s anthems about self-love you’re going to get. “Born This Way” is exactly that, and is one of Lady Gaga’s most iconic songs ever. This track came out in 2011 and was the lead single from her album of the same name.
This song was her self-described “freedom song” and was inspired by the 90s dance hits that inspired women and the LGBTQ+ community. In turn, Gaga’s song inspired a whole new generation of young people to be and love themselves.
This track is high-energy and tips its hat to 90s Dance-Pop tracks…
It’s one catchy part after another, with a fun verse, catchy pre-chorus, and punchy hook. Unlike 90s songs that had hidden messages or were adopted by different communities, Lady Gaga speaks directly to LGBTQ+ people in her lyrics.
Lines like, “Don’t be a drag, just be a queen” as well as “No matter gay, straight, or bi, lesbian, transgender life – I’m on the right track, baby, I was born to survive.”
But this song is for everyone else too. “Don’t hide yourself in regret, just love yourself, and you’re set” is a perfect message for us all.
Be Good to Yourself – Journey
While there’s a Dance-Pop theme running through this list, not all songs about loving yourself here are in that vein. If you want a rocker, Journey is here to pick you up with their positive song “Be Good to Yourself.”
This song is fast and full of pep, making it the kind of thing that will make you spring out of bed and dance around in your underpants. The main message here is “Be good to yourself when nobody else will.”
And that’s an excellent thing to remember to do. The music may be a bit outdated, especially the keyboard sounds, but a little bit of cheese never hurt anyone. There’s also a screaming 80s guitar solo here because, yeah, this Classic Rock song comes from 1986, and that’s just how they rolled back then.
Extraordinary Machine – Fiona Apple
Are you an “Extraordinary Machine”? Fiona Apple believes she is, and why not? This much-celebrated pianist and singer won a Grammy for the album of the same name as this fun and very unusual track.
It’s a slow and delicate song that reminds me a bit of cartoon villains tiptoeing around. It uses plucked strings, marimba, orchestral woodwinds, and even tubular bells for a strange cinematic quality.
This is Apple at her weirdest, and I love it!
It sounds like a Vaudeville performance by a Pop singer. But she also sings beautifully here, showing her range and vocal skills. Her writing skills are on point, too.
The song is about being flexible and resilient. This is especially true when Apple sings, “Be kind to me, or treat me mean – I’ll make the most of it – I’m an extraordinary machine.” Yeah, you sure are, Fiona!
Why are there two names behind the song “Greatest Love of All”? Actually, there are four to contend with. This song, though made hugely famous by Whitney Houston in 1985, it was written back in 1977.
The team of Michael Masser and Linda Creed put the epic song together, and it was first recorded by jazz guitarist and singer George Benson. His version is great with its soft verses and big chorus – check it out!
But, the version most of us know is by Whitney…
She recorded this song under the title “Greatest Love of All” for her 1985 debut album. It was a smash hit, becoming one of her biggest songs. And there’s no wonder why. Her vocals positively soar in this song, showing her tremendous power and control and making a name for herself as a singer.
And the message of the song, “The greatest love of all – Is easy to achieve – Learning to love yourself – It is the greatest love of all,” is something we all know as Truth with a capital T!
Pushover – Etta James
Speaking of legendary songstresses, Etta James deserves a mention as well. This incredible singer worked in Jazz, Blues, R&B, and even Rock and Roll.
She has been awarded six Grammys and was inagerated into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Doesn’t sound like much of a “Pushover,” does she? She certainly denies it in her song, giving herself respect even when others don’t.
This track came out on her 1963 album Etta James Top Ten and was a new song on that mostly compilation album.
It is a light, fun, doo-wop-style song…
But she manages to show off some of her legendary power here. The song is about her turning down a man who’s trying to woo her. She sings, “Whoa you thought I was a pushover – Whoa you can’t push me over – Nobody is gonna push me over,” and you can shake your tail feathers while you sing along.
Respect – Otis Redding / Aretha Franklin
Another legendary singer who demands respect is the Queen of Soul herself, Aretha Franklin. And, while “Respect” was written by a man, soul singer Otis Redding, she flipped this song on its head with her version.
She re-arranged the song and by flipping the perspective of the vocals, used this as a hugely empowering song for women.
And this was all back in 1967…
The iconic song starts with the classic line “What you want – Baby I got it,” which is a great way to respect yourself. But demanding respect from others, especially from your partner, is one of the best ways to show yourself some love.
Aretha Franklin’s version of this song is fun, energetic, and full of power. Her voice shines as she sings, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T – Find out what it means to me.”
And what about TCB – what does that mean? Taking care of business, baby! Which is what Franklin did throughout her whole incredible career. Gotta give her that respect and get some for yourself, too.
I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor
“At first, I was afraid – I was afraid, I was petrified.” That’s how “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor starts, and you know that it also means a change is on its way. Because this is a song about surviving and moving on, discovering strength after a breakup. And we’ve all been there.
Gaynor recorded her version of this song in 1977, and it was a massive hit, going to #1 and being played in discos all over the world.
Over 40 years later, not much has changed…
This song became a major gay anthem in the 1980s as a response to both discrimination and the HIV/AIDS epidemic. But, as a song with a message of empowerment, it is inspiring for all. This track has a fun disco beat and powerful strings that sweep you around the dance floor.
Other artists have covered this song, too, but none so strange as the American band Cake. Their version of “I Will Survive” features off-kilter vocals and a trumpet solo, making it a weird but still wonderful song, too.
Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
If these past few anthems have been a bit too outdated for you, try this much newer one. “Shake It Off” comes from Taylor Swift’s confusingly titled album 1989, which she put out in 2014.
And, just like Gloria Gaynor singing about surviving a nasty situation, this is Swift’s answer to all the haters and doubters.
The beat for this song is amazing…
It’s just infectious and drives this song along. Try to listen to this track and not shake it – your butt, I mean. Swift’s vocals are fun and funny, too, as she sings about shaking off all the negative feelings coming from haters and players.
While they’re all trying to bring her down, she just laughs and sings, “But I keep cruising – Can’t stop, won’t stop grooving – It’s like I got this music – In my mind – Saying, It’s gonna be alright.”
True to Myself – Ziggy Marley
Ziggy Marley is the son of the legend that was reggae singer Bob Marley. And, after a 20+ year stint in the family band, The Melody Makers, Ziggy decided to go solo. Maybe it had something to do with being true to himself and not only following in his father’s footsteps.
His debut solo album, Dragonfly, came out in 2003. And one of the biggest tracks on that album was “True to Myself.”
This track has a slow, chilled groove, just like most Reggae songs…
However, the sound is quite different, like a blend of Alternative Rock and Reggae. The beat is bouncy, but the guitars are more Rock-inspired. Ziggy’s vocals are bright and super-positive. He sings all about being true to himself and makes it pretty easy for you to sing along, too.
Lyrics like “If you don’t deal with it, it keeps killing you little by little, I say – Call me selfish if you will my life I alone can live, I say,” dishing out the sometimes tough job of loving yourself.
Who You Are – Jessie J
British singer Jessie J is best known for her track “Pricetag.” That song was about not being able to be bought, and it came from the same album, Who You Are, as did the song “Who You Are.” This was her 2011 debut album, and it was massively successful. But, Jessie J held the importance of being true to herself as paramount during her success.
She sings, “Don’t lose who you are – In the blur of the stars – Seeing is deceiving – Dreaming is believing – It’s okay not to be okay,” which is great advice for anyone.
This song is slow and sensitive…
It starts quiet and mournful, with her singing about self-doubt in a voice that sounds fragile. But, as the beat comes in, Jessie J starts to let go and show off her powerful vocal skills.
And the simple chorus of “Who you are” is really beautiful and will remind the toughest self-critic to be kinder and more loving.
Beautiful – Christina Aguilera
The last song on my list of songs about loving yourself is “Beautiful” by Christina Aguilera. Aguilera was a huge name back in the 90s and 2000s with her powerful and sometimes provocative Power Pop. The song “Beautiful,” from 2002’s Stripped, is one of her finest works.
This song was written by Linda Perry, singer from 4 Non Blondes and songwriter/producer extraordinaire. It’s a song all about loving yourself and remembering that “Beautiful, no matter what they say – Words can’t bring me down.”
Unlike so much of Aguilera’s music…
This isn’t a fast song or a Dance-Pop number. It’s a soulful song about loving who you are that features her strong voice over a piano with beautiful strings and a slow beat.
In short, this song is a beautiful way to remind ourselves that no matter what others say, we have to keep our heads up and stay positive.
Need More Music to Lift Yourself Up?
Well, check out our thoughts on the Best Songs About Hope, the Best Songs About Not Giving Up, the Best Inspirational Songs For Motivation, the Top Songs about Freedom, and the Best Women Empowerment Songs for more uplifting song selections.
Also, you’ll need to listen to them. So, take a look at our comprehensive reviews of the Best Sound Quality Earbuds, the Best Bass Earbuds, the Best iPhone Earbuds, the Best Headphones for Music, and the Best Headphones Under $200 that you can buy in 2023.
Songs About Loving Yourself – Final Thoughts
We all get down, and we all get negative sometimes. More often than not, we just need a good solid reminder to be good to ourselves even when we feel we don’t deserve it. That’s when you need self-love the most! And these songs are some of the best reminders out there.
Some are old, some are newer, but they all have one thing in common – a message of loving yourself. This message can come across in any genre and any style.
So, whether you need a slow, sensitive song to get straight to the heart of the matter, or a peppy, fun tune to dance to, you’ve got it. Now, get out there and give yourself some good loving.
And, until next time, happy listening.