The 31-year-old actress, who won a best supporting actress Oscar for her role in "12 Years a Slave," tops the magazine's list, announced Wednesday.
Commenting on being selected for this year's cover, Nyong'o says: "It was exciting and just a major, major compliment. I was happy for all the girls who would see me on it and feel a little more seen."
She says he mother "always said I was beautiful. And I finally believed her at some point."
More info here: www.people.com/people