30 Steel Magnolias Quotes Packed With Sass & Shade

This collection of Steel Magnolias quotes will give you an idea of a Southern woman’s charm!

Steel Magnolias is a heartwarming story of the bond between women who lived in the small town of Chinquapin Parish in Louisiana. It’s based on a 1987 play of the same title, which talks about the death of one of their friends.

There are six women in this group of friends, and big names in the industry gave their characters life. We have Julia Roberts, who played Shelby, Dolly Parton, who played Truvy, and more!

Beyond all the sarcastic, sassy, and shady remarks the ladies have, Steel Magnolias teaches us about the beauty of friendship, women’s strength, and beauty beyond the physical. Looking at things from a different perspective, you’ll understand that these topics are behind the movie’s title.

After all, the title, Steel Magnolias, is a perfect metaphor for women. Learn more about why this is so through the collection of the best quotes from the movie below!

And don’t forget to check out these Practical Magic quotes and Little Women quotes.

Best Steel Magnolias Quotes

1. “Well, you know what they say, ‘If you don’t have anything nice to say about anybody, come sit by me!’” – Clairee Belcher

2. “Honey, time marches on, and eventually, you realize it’s marchin’ across your face.” – Truvy Jones

3. “Don’t try to get on my good side. I no longer have one.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

4. “The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize.” – Clairee Belcher

5. “I’m not crazy, M’Lynn, I’ve just been in a very bad mood for 40 years!” – Ouiser Boudreaux

6. “I find it amusing. Men are supposed to be made out of steel or something. I just sat there. I just held Shelby’s hand. There was no noise, no tremble, just peace. Oh, God. I realize as a woman how lucky I am. I was there when that wonderful creature drifted into my life, and I was there when she drifted out. It was the most precious moment of my life.” – M’Lynn Eatenton

Steel Magnolias Quotes to Inspire You

7. “Smile—it increases your face value.” – Truvy Jones

8. “I would rather have 30 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.” – Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie

9. “Oh, sweetheart, don’t. Please don’t cry, or I will, too. I have a strict policy that nobody cries alone in my presence.” – Truvy Jones

10. “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.” – Truvy Jones

Iconic Quotes From Steel Magnolias

11. “It takes some effort to look like this.” – Truvy Jones

12. “You know I love you more than my luggage.” – Clairee Belcher

13. “If he’s trying to drive me crazy, it’s too late.” – M’Lynn Eatenton

14. “A dirty mind is a terrible thing to waste.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

15. “You sound almost chipper. What happened today? You run over a small child or something?” – Clairee Belcher

16. Truvy Jones: “I kind of like hiring somebody with a past.”

Clairee Belcher: “She can’t be more than eighteen. She hasn’t had time to have a past.”

Savage Steel Magnolias Quotes to Keep In Mind

17. “I’d recognize this penmanship anywhere. You have the handwritin’ of a serial killer.” – Clairee Belcher

18. “I don’t trust anybody that does their own hair. I don’t think it’s normal.” – Truvy Jones

19. “The nicest thing I can say about her is all her tattoos are spelled correctly.” – Truvy Jones

20. “Sammy’s so confused he don’t know whether to scratch his watch or wind his butt.” – Truvy Jones

21. “The only reason people are nice to me is because I have more money than God.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

Steel Magnolias Quotes That Zoom in on Life and Love

22. “I just like the idea of growing old with somebody.” – Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie

23. “I really do love football, but it is hard to parlay that into a reason to live.” – Clairee Belcher

24. “Shelby, as you know, wouldn’t want us to get mired down and wallow in this. We should handle it the best way we know how and get on with it. That’s what my mind says; I just wish somebody would explain it to my heart.” – M’Lynn Eatenton

25. “I do not see plays, because I can nap at home for free. And I don’t see movies ’cause they’re trash, and they got nothin’ but naked people in ’em! And I don’t read books, ’cause if they’re any good, they’re gonna make ’em into a miniseries.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

More Steel Magnolias Quotes That You Must Read

26. “There, my secret is out. I am having an affair with a Mercedes Benz.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

27. “I haven’t left the house without lycra on these thighs since I was 14.” – Truvy Jones

28. “Ouiser could never stay mad at me—she worships the quicksand I walk on.” – Clairee Belcher

29. “I didn’t know if you would hire someone who may or may not be married to someone who might be a dangerous criminal.” – Annelle Dupuy-DeSoto

30. “I am an old Southern woman, and I am supposed to wear funny clothes and ugly hats and dig in the dirt. I did not make the rules.” – Ouiser Boudreaux

Which Steel Magnolias Quotes Resonate With You the Most?

When you look up the definition of a “steel magnolia,” you’ll find that it’s a common Southern US phrase referring to “a woman who exemplifies both traditional femininity and an uncommon fortitude.” These are the perfect words to describe the women we get to know in the movie.

It is a beautiful yet heartbreaking story of friendship, love, loss, and strength. Indeed, Steel Magnolias inspires many young girls because of its morals, which you can find through its quotes and the characters’ bond.

Through it, we understand that friends are not merely your peers. They are people who will stand by you through thick and thin, but they are also the ones who can be brutally honest with you when needed.

When you’re friends with someone, you don’t have to pretend and put up a facade. You are simply you, and they understand and love you for who you are.

Steel Magnolias also teach women to stand firm and show off their strengths. We are emotionally powerful beings—we can be as strong as steel if we want and need to!

Though the movie is full of sass and shade, remember all the lessons you’ve learned from this group of friends, too! You are a woman who is strong, capable, and brave!

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Karen Danao

Hi, I’m Karen, a content curator and writer for Quote Ambition; I’m also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, I’m someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics I love writing about! However, my true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.

With the many places I’ve been to, I found that love, inspiration, and happiness are some things that bring people together. No matter how different we are on the outside, I’m a true believer that our emotions don’t lie; if you dig deep into our psyche, we’re all the same inside.

This belief was further amplified when I joined Quote Ambition. Through the quotes I’ve read, collected, organized, and written about, I found that humans are resilient, creative, and compassionate.

We take from each others’ hearts and courage, and it’s through our individual experiences that we learn how to rise above our challenges and pain. In so many ways, Quote Ambition is a platform that allows people from all over the world to gain the inspiration they need anytime, anywhere!

You can find me on MuckRack and LinkedIn.