Have you been secretly pining for crop tops and mixtapes? Do you remember all too fondly the sounds of songs like “MMMBop” and “…Baby One More Time”? Well, take a step back in time to the era that gave us all those things and more, and let’s find out what the pop stars of the ’90s are up to these days.
20. Sarah McLachlan
Canadian singer Sarah McLachlan made her breakthrough in 1991 with the album Solace, and hit after hit followed. And while McLachlan’s life hasn’t always been easy, every time she gets knocked down she bounces right back up. She’s a mom of two now and thankfully, she’s still making gorgeous music.
19. Ricky Martin
Ricky Martin was already a star in Mexico when the ’90s rolled around, but once he achieved international success with 1999’s “Livin’ la Vida Loca” he spawned something of a Latin pop revolution. Fast-forward to today, though, and Martin is now not just a music icon but a gay icon too, after he went public with his sexuality in 2010.
18. Shania Twain
Shania Twain sold millions of albums and won multiple awards in the ’90s, rightfully earning herself the title “The Queen of Country Pop.” Unfortunately, Twain officially retired from music in 2004, citing her diminished voice as the reason. She did, however, perform one last tour in 2015, and many would still hail her as the queen of country today.
Brandy conquered not one but two fields in the ’90s: music and TV. And she was super successful in both; in addition to starring in the hit sitcom Moesha, her 1993 debut album sold a whopping six million copies. Brandy’s fame did dwindle a little once the decade finished, however, but by 2010 she was back in business with new TV roles and some new music, too.
16. Tori Amos
Red-haired siren Tori Amos achieved her solo breakthrough in 1992 after some time spent with the band Y Kant Tori Read. And although she’s not as big now as she was in the ’90s, Amos is still making music and seems perfectly happy. In fact, she has even told The Independent that she plans to keep performing well into her old age.
15. Vanilla Ice
The man who gave the world the ultra-catchy “Ice Ice Baby” ended up falling from grace when it transpired that the man also known as Robert Van Winkle lied about his life in his 1991 biography. Unfortunately, it was downhill from there, and Vanilla Ice has been dogged by legal issues since. However, the odd acting part, reality TV slot and occasional gig keep him earning.
14. Jennifer Lopez
J.Lo is still very well known, but she was in her heyday in the ’90s. The actress/singer snatched the position of “first artist to top the Billboard Hot 100 with a debut single” straight out from under Britney Spears’ nose in mid-1999. And, despite some Ben Affleck-related disasters, she’s been going strong ever since.
13. Aaron Carter
Aaron Carter was the Justin Bieber of his day: he was cute and sang catchy pop songs like “Crush on You”. But as soon as he got older, he started courting controversy. In addition to various legal and drug issues – as well as, allegedly cheating on Hilary Duff – he was a vocal Donald Trump supporter in 2016.
12. Celine Dion
“My Heart Will Go On” from the movie Titanic cemented Celine Dion’s status as one of the biggest musical stars of the ’90s. In 2000, though, she took a hiatus from her career and gave birth to a son in 2001. Yet even though her personal life has been marred by tragedy as the years have passed, she has kept singing.
11. Alanis Morissette
Alanis Morissette was a big name in Canada before her album Jagged Little Pill made her an international star in the mid ’90s. She won multiple Grammys for the album and paved the way for other Canadian female vocalists like Avril Lavigne. Today, though, she does a bit of everything: singing, acting and even writing an advice column.
10. Toni Braxton
Toni Braxton made herself one of the best-selling female artists of the ’90s with hits like “You’re Makin’ Me High” and “Un-Break My Heart”. Unfortunately, as the era came to an end she suffered bankruptcy, but she never stopped being an award-winning star.
9. Snoop Dogg
The name Snoop Dogg is still a famous one, but Cordozar Calvin Broadus Jr. was never more popular than in the ’90s. A protégé of Dr. Dre, he became one of the most successful rappers of his era, and his songs have been beloved ever since. He’s also maintained an acting career, starring in hit flicks such as Scary Movie 5.
8. Mariah Carey
Everyone adored Mariah Carey in the ’90s when she sang “One Sweet Day”, a track that still holds the U.S. record for the most consecutive weeks at number one (16, in fact!). But with the release of her 2001 movie Glitter, her career began to take a downward turn. Consequently, she’s had to fight to get back, and stay, on top.
7. John Rzeznik
John Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls was responsible for smash hits like “Iris” and “Here Is Gone”, and his good looks didn’t hurt his career either. But, as befits a man who once begged his fans to never trail nostalgically after him, he’s grown into middle-age gracefully. Goo Goo Dolls are still active today, with a 2017 tour ahead of them.
6. Marilyn Manson
Marilyn Manson gave parents nightmares in the ’90s, what with his anti-Christian music and supposedly satanic looks. Ironically, it was that which helped make him a megastar, but as social attitudes adjusted, he gradually became less controversial. Aside from singing, he’s also dabbled in acting and art.
5. Lenny Kravitz
Lenny Kravitz’s songs and headline-grabbing relationships made him one of the musical icons of the ’90s. But though today’s youngsters still recognize him as a pop star when they see him, their minds may first jump to the hit movie franchise The Hunger Games, in which he had a big role.
The three brothers who formed Hanson held pride of place on many a teenage girl’s wall in the ’90s. Luckily for them, even after “MMMBop” had stopped being played on the radio, the good looks of Isaac, Taylor and Zac never faded. You might be surprised to learn that all of them are dads now, with 12 children between the three of them!
3. Justin Timberlake
*NSYNC band member and former Mouseketeer Justin Timberlake managed to impressively make the transition from ’90s teen idol to well-respected singer and actor. He’s won numerous accolades, including ten Grammys. On the other hand, the world will never let him forget that hair.
2. Britney Spears
For a while, Britney Spears was the archetypal fallen idol. Her huge success as a teenage pop star in the ’90s led, unfortunately, to a very public mental breakdown. But she got back on her feet and into the recording studio and now has a hit residency show in Las Vegas.
1. The Spice Girls
Possibly no other band defined the ’90s quite as much as the Spice Girls did. Victoria Beckham, Emma Bunton, Melanie Brown, Geri Halliwell and Melanie Chisholm all eventually went their separate ways, with only now-designer Beckham really remaining a star in her own right. But they’re still pop culture icons to this day.