See 15 Mega Pop Stars At the Start of Their Career vs. Now

Some of the biggest pop stars of all time are still going strong, years and years after they got their start. Take a look at what some of these pop power stars looked like when they were just wide-eyed Hollywood newbies and see how well they’ve all aged now! (Serious Question: Has Prince aged at all?)

1
Britney Spears
Britney Spears
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Britney Spears took over the pop scene in the late '90s, with her debut album, ...Baby One More Time, that featured the hits  "...Baby One More Time" and "(You Drove Me) Crazy". Since her early days, Britney hasn't gone anywhere and has amassed a huge fandom. She became the "best-selling teenaged artist of all time" and has earned her numerous awards and accolades, including a Grammy Award, six MTV Video Music Awards including the Lifetime Achievement Award, nine Billboard Music Awards, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Throughout her career, she has sold over 100 million albums worldwide. She has released 8 studio albums and is currently working on her 9th, which she believes will be her best ever. She's had a Las Vegas residency, Piece of Me, since 2014.
2
Christina Aguilera
Christina Aguilera
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Just like Britney, Xtina launched to super-stardom in the late '90s when she released her album Christina Aguilera, which featured the pop hits "Genie in a Bottle" and "What a Girl Wants". Since then she has gone on to win five Grammy Awards, one Latin Grammy Award, and even got her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She has sold over 17.9 million albums in the United States as of 2014 and 50 million albums worldwide as of 2011. Over the last few years she rotated as mentor on The Voice and is now working on her 8th studio album, set to release some time in 2016.
3
Justin Timberlake
Justin Timberlake
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Back in the mid-'90s, JT was just a ramen-noodle haired boybander. NSYNC released their debut album, NSYNC, in 1998 and took the world by storm. It was obvious then that JT was the star of the group and by 2002, he'd left the band to go solo. JT's solo career is still going very strong almost 15 years later. He has won nine Grammy Awards and four Emmy Awards (for his work on Saturday Night Live). Over the course of his career, he has taken breaks to also work on acting, starting with Model Behavior, later moving on to Friends With Benefits, and now he's set to voice a lead character in the 2016 film Trolls, which he is also tapped to provide music for the film's soundtrack.
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4
Beyoncé
Beyonce Knowles
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Like Justin Timberlake, Bey got her start in a group. In the late '90s we came to know her as the lead singer of the R&B group Destiny's Child. It was clear from their self titled album (and lineup changes) that she was the star. These days Beyoncé is one of the biggest musicians in the world. She has sold over 118 million records as a solo artist and an additional 60 million with Destiny's Child. She has won 20 Grammy Awards  (setting a record for winning 6 in one night) and is the most nominated woman in the history of the award. Time listed her among the 100 most influential people in the world in 2013 and 2014. Just this year she dropped her fire single "Formation" and announced a tour of the same name, though the title and release date of her new album has yet to be announced - then again she has a history of just dropping an album with no notice, because she's that popular.
5
Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey
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When Mariah Carey debuted her self titled album in 1990, she certainly had more of an R&B feel than pop, but over time her sound incorporated more pop (just listen to "All I Want For Christmas Is You" and try to deny it's the greatest Christmas pop song of all time - you can't). Over the last 20+ years, she has sold more than 200 million records worldwide and won countless awards, including 5 Grammy Awards, 19 World Music Awards, 11 American Music Awards, and 14 Billboard Music Awards. She has been consistently credited with inspiring a generation of singers, most recently in reference to new pop star Ariana Grande. Like Brit, she currently has a Las Vegas Residency, which she released #1 to Infinity with, an album with all 18 of her #1 hits and the new recording "Infinity".
6
Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lopez
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Jenny from the Block! Unlike most on this list, J.Lo did not get her start in the music industry, she began as a Fly Girl on In Living Color and didn't break onto the music scene until she landed the lead role in Selena. She broke into the scene with her debut album On the 6, which featured her big hits "Waiting For Tonight" and "Let's Get Loud". Her most recent album, A.K.A. didn't perform well in sales, but it's not the only venture J.Lo is up to. She's now a television producer, among many other ambitious roles, currently on the show Shades of Blue, and just resigned to Epic Records with a multi record deal. She too currently has a Las Vegas residency, All I Have, that has a bit more of a fluid schedule than Brit and Mariah.
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7
Jessica Simpson
Jessica Simpson
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We met this country beauty with her first single "I Wanna Love You Forever" off her debut album Sweet Kisses in 1999. Right now, Jessica hasn't released an original studio album (Do You Know) since 2008, though she did release a Christmas album in 2010. Over the years, she moved from pop music to country and now she is working on an 8th studio album. In the course of her career, she has sold over 30 million albums worldwide.
8
Mandy Moore
Mandy Moore
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Like a few of the stars on this list, Mandy Moore's debut album, So Real, released in 1999 with the hit single "Candy" blowing up the airwaves. Mandy's last studio album, Amanda Leigh, released in 2009 and was not met with much critical success. However, like a few of those on this list, she's worked outside of the music industry, acting in films A Walk to Remember, Chasing Liberty, and Saved!. She was in the 2010 film Tangled, voicing the role of Rapunzel. The film won a Grammy for "Best Song Written for Visual Media" for her song with Zachary Levi "I See the Light".
9
Cher
Cher, Moonstruck
MGM via Everett Collection/Getty Images
Cher has been around since the late '60s. Back then, she started out as a solo artist when she was just a teen, but then became one half of the famous Sonny & Cher. Now, she's still just as iconic. She released her 25th studio album, Closer To The Truth, in 2013. She has amassed a following of loyal lovers over the years as she produced music, worked in film, and more. During her 5-decade career, Cher has won an Oscar, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, a special CFDA Fashion Award, three Golden Globes, and a Cannes Film Festival Award. Over her career, she has sold 200 million records worldwide and she is the only artist to date to have a number-one single on a Billboard chart in each decade from the 1960s to the 2010s.
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10
Madonna
Madonna, Desperately Seeking Susan
Orion via Everett Collection/Getty Images
Madonna broke onto the scene in the early '80s with her first hit single "Everybody" off her debut studio album Madonna. Her 30+ year career has led to her being called the Queen of Pop, paving the way for many other artists and inspiring many, such as Lady Gaga. She has sold more than 300 million records worldwide, which has made Madonna the best-selling female recording artist of all time as recognized by Guinness World Records. In 2015 she released her thirteenth studio album, Rebel Heart.
11
Prince
Prince
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Prince's debut album For You released in 1978, when Prince was only 19-years-old. Prince's sound can't be just classified as pop (though his sound is a clear influence in other pop artists), as he is also an R&B, rock, funk, hip hop, psychedelia, and jazz artist. He has sold over 100 million records worldwide. In his almost 4-decade career, he has won seven Grammy Awards,  a Golden Globe, and an Oscar. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004 and Rolling Stone has ranked Prince at number 27 on it's list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
12
Janet Jackson
Janet Jackson
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Before she became a solo artist herself, the world already knew Janet as the youngest member of the Jackson family. She released her debut album Janet Jackson, with a strong bubblegum pop sound. Since then she has gone on to produce a series of sonically innovative, socially conscious and sexually provocative records. Janet has sold over 160 million records, which according Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) this makes her the eleventh best-selling female artist in the United States, with 26 million certified albums. Her most recent studio album, Unbreakable, was released in 2015, the same year she was awarded the Ultimate Icon: Music Dance Visual award at the BET Awards.
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13
Cyndi Lauper
Cyndi Lauper
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When Cyndi hit the scene, her message was pretty clear. Girls just wanna have fun! At the time, her album She's So Unusual was the first debut female album to chart four top-five hits on the Billboard Hot 100— with the songs "Girls Just Want to Have Fun", "Time After Time", "She Bop", and "All Through the Night". Since then, she has released 9 studio albums, her most recent being Memphis Blues, a switch in genre from pop to blues. Cyndi is only one of 20 artists to reach GET status (Grammy, Emmy, Tony), all she needs for an EGOT is that Oscar!
14
Paula Abdul
Paula Abdul
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After working as a popular choreographer in the early '80s, Paula went on to release a bunch of hits in the late '80s/early '90s, starting with hits like "Straight Up", "Forever Your Girl", and "Opposites Attract" - which won her a Grammy. Paula hasn't released music of her own in years, but she didn't leave the industry. After some setbacks, she revitalized her career as an original judge on American Idol. Since leaving AI, she's gone on to be a judge on multiple shoes like the American version of The X-Fator, Dancing With The Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, and RuPaul's Drag Race. In 2015, Paula, along with Charles "Chucky" Klapow, Renee Richie and Nakul Dev Mahajan won the World Choreography Award for Outstanding Choreography Digital Format for the video "Check Yourself".
15
Sinead O'Connor
Sinead O'Connor
Everett Collection/WENN
Sinead rose to prominence in the '90s with her debut album The Lion and the Cobra, her success was in large part to her version of a new arrangement of Prince’s song "Nothing Compares 2 U". Despite releasing 10 albums over the course of her career, Sinead's music has been largely overshadowed by her strong views and reactions on organised religion, women's rights, war, and child abuse. Her most recent album is I'm Not Bossy, I'm the Boss. She's set to release am memoir some time in 2016.

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