Every era has its set of gorgeous it-girls, whether it’s pop stars, actresses, or supermodels. Here are some of the most prolific Hollywood trendsetters that everyone is watching in 2021.
45. Anya Taylor-Joy
In a 2021 interview with Vanity Fair, the Queen’s Gambit actress Anya Taylor-Joy was asked how it felt to become a household name overnight. And as it turns out, it’s quite the adjustment.
"I think I'll probably understand this year in about five years. I think that's when it will probably hit," she answered shyly. Ever since starring in the aforementioned Netflix series, her name has been on everybody’s lips (and chess boards have been flying off the shelves around the world!).
44. Olivia Wilde
It’s hard to avoid ‘it-girl’ status when she’s dating one of the most sought-after men in Hollywood! That’s the case with actress and director Olivia Wilde, who has appeared on the front pages of every magazine due to her relationship with pop icon Harry Styles. And she’s come a long way despite constant tabloid attention.
"At the end of your twenties, you realize you are inherently flawed, and that's great, and that's what makes you dynamic," Wilde said, opening up in a recent interview. "For me, personally, it was around 27 when that kind of return to self took place, of living for myself, not living to keep up expectations."
43. Nina Dobrev
In the late 2000s, it seemed like everyone’s favorite show was The Vampire Diaries. But for it-girl Nina Dobrev, it was other women she was focusing on. “I'm really impressed and in awe of a lot of women right now. I've really enjoyed watching because she's kind of my same age, Jennifer Lawrence,” she said.
"She has tackled both indies and big-budget studio films,” she went on. “She has a humility and a presence and a charisma and a humor and intelligence that I really admire that about her. Audrey Hepburn is a big inspiration of mine. Cate Blanchett, she can do no wrong in any area of her life." Nothing like raising up fellow women!
42. Emily Blunt
She first gained recognition as the workaholic receptionist Emily Charlton in 2006’s The Devil Wears Prada, but it was a few more years before Emily Blunt really made a name for herself in the industry. And today, there’s no doubt that she’s a verified A-lister.
And it’s not just her - Emily may be an it-girl, but her loved-up hubby John Krasinski is her ‘it-guy’ equal. But the gorgeous couple tries to keep that on the down-low, especially around their kids. She even admits that “We've never said [the word 'famous'] in our house."
41. Alessandra Ambrosio
Since her high-heeled feet first hit the runway for Victoria’s Secret in 2000, supermodel Alessandra Ambrosio has been at the top of the heap as a fashion icon, and she’s only garnered more fame in the years since. But Ambrosio has admitted that this wasn’t always what she wanted.
"When I was really small, I wanted to work in NASA," She told one interviewer. "I wanted to have a life with NASA and be an astronaut, but I knew that wouldn't happen. You have to be a nerd for that kind of thing to happen, and by the time I got to high school, I wasn't a nerd at all."
40. Ashley Graham
There’s nothing we stan more than a relatable queen! And Ashley Graham is just that, despite smashing down barriers and stereotypes in a notoriously difficult industry. But this curvaceous supermodel doesn’t see herself as any cooler or more fashionable than any other woman.
"I know it's cliche, but I've always wanted to be the Oprah of my generation - the girl who's giving you all of the inspiration by letting you know that I'm just like you and we all have the same struggles," She once said. No wonder so many young women look up to her today!
39. Nathalie Emmanuel
When watching Game of Thrones at its peak, it was hard not to be distracted by the stunning Missandei, played by the prolifically talented actress Nathalie Emmanuel. And while it could be easy to be absorbed by her own looks as an official it-girl, Emmanuel doesn’t give it much thought.
"I'm not someone who needs to have makeup on all the time,” she told one interviewer. “When I'm doing it for myself, I get irritated, and I'm like, 'Okay, I'm done.' I just go as I am, as long as I'm clean. It really depends on my hair, too - it can dictate how much time I spend."
38. Emma Stone
Looking back to her more minor parts in films like Superbad, it’s “super” mindblowing how far Emma Stone has come in her career so far. The Cruella actress is one of the most sought-after leading ladies in Hollywood. But even after a decade of fame, Stone still has her fair share of worries.
"With success, it's gone?” she once said about her anxieties. “No, no, no... I manage it differently now... I'm assuming that will always be a part of my wiring and my personality. I'm a worrier. I haven't slept through the night in five years. But many of us haven't. I'm definitely a neurotic, as they say."
37. Hannah Jeter
Since her very first appearance on the cover of Sports Illustrated, readers have been clamoring for more from this drop-dead gorgeous pin-up. Since that fateful cover shoot in 2015 Hannah Jeter has been in virtually every publication, but according to the model herself, it took some time to adjust to the pressure.
"The first year, I was so nervous. Especially surrounding launch week, you just have so much anxiety because it really is a responsibility to promote the issue," she said of the start of her career. "I think for me, I get more and more comfortable, and it becomes easier. It's so fun, and I've gotten used to it."
36. Priyanka Chopra
With the Miss World title, it’s no wonder that everyone has their eyes on her. Priyanka Chopra was a pageant winner who also caught the eye of one of the world’s most famous pop stars - her husband Nick Jonas. And after 39 years on earth, she’s much more than just a pretty face.
She’s learned a lot in her time and has insisted that life isn’t as picture-perfect as some may think. “No one only wins," she said. "I've lost many battles. I've done many, many movies that no one has watched. It's what you do after failures that defines you. To me, life is a ladder. It's never a destination."
35. Emilia Clarke
When someone is the star of the biggest shows in the world, it’s hard to believe that things can get any better. But in the case of Game of Thrones actress Emilia Clarke, her career is just getting started. And she has enough experience now to steer her own ship!
"In the beginning, I took everything that anyone offered to me, because why not?" she said of her early career. "I kept thinking that my good luck was going to run out. At the end of the show, I'm looking at things in a very different light and... I'm going to be pretty careful about the next things that I do."
34. Emma Watson
It’s impressive enough to be one of the most famous actresses on earth, but Emma Watson wasn’t willing to settle for Hollywood fame - she also went on to graduate from Brown University, and has since become an influential feminist voice. And her empathy and emotional intel have a lot to do with it.
"No one likes feeling vulnerable and uncomfortable and weak," Watson explained about how she has managed to reach out to so many people. "But I really have found that it's in those moments when I go there that there's a kind of magic... it's the single most important way of connecting to other human beings."
33. Meghan Markle
Looking at the rise of the former actress turned duchess (and back to normal life again!) Megan Markle, it’s safe to say one thing - it’s been a wild ride. But even back in 2016, Markle was astounded at how far she had come, although she attributed her success to her ambitious personality.
“To try to dream of what more it can be? I can hardly conceive of it,” she said. “It's not so much about setting goals for things, because I trust that with my temperament and my drive, these beautiful things will continue to manifest." We wish we could get a bit of that manifestation power in our lives!
32. Ariana Grande
For those of us who want the living definition of an it-girl, we only need to look at Ariana Grande! Since her days as a Nickelodeon star, she’s become one of the most famous and beloved celebrities, as well as dominating the pop charts. But she’s looking out for her fellow it-girls too.
"I'll never [...] swallow the fact that people feel the need to attach a successful woman to a man,” she said. “I saw a headline... they called someone another someone's ex, and that pissed me off. This person has had so many great records in the last year, and she hasn't been dating him forever. Call her by her name!"
31. Adriana Lima
For Brazil-born cover girl Adriana Lima, life has been a constant whirlwind of photoshoots and runways since she first came to fame for her modeling abilities. And with so much to manage, how does this stunning it-girl manage to stay on top of her game?
Here’s how she does it - "I always say to myself to be myself at all times,” she once said. "When I go to a photoshoot - or anywhere - I bring the Adriana Lima from Bahia. I don't create [the persona] of something I'm not. I am who I am, and that's who I bring into my work."How inspiring!
30. Dua Lipa
After starting life as the child of struggling refugees from Kosovo, life has been something of a fairy tale story for pop star Dua Lipa. Her rise to fame and success has been momentous, but the ‘Levitating’ songstress isn’t slowing down anytime soon.
When asked how her successes, particularly her Grammy wins, had affected her outlook, she answered rather bluntly - "I feel like winning… almost just pushed me to work harder." We love a self-confident queen, and can’t wait to see what else she has up her sleeve!
29. Hailey Bieber
While she’s no doubt been the target of plenty of envy, Hailey Bieber is famous for more than just her superstar husband Justin. Since being thrust into the public eye, Mrs. Bieber has been making a name for herself with her incredible fashion sense and ice-cool look.
And in the last few years, she’s been placed at the head of numerous marketing and publicity campaigns for some of the world’s biggest brands, as well as running a mega-successful Youtube channel. And if that’s not enough, rumors are circulating that Hailey might be a mama soon. Watch this space…
28. Kendall Jenner
While the older Kardashian sisters built the family’s empire, we can’t help but think they may now have been officially overshadowed by their two youngest siblings. Just look at Kendall Jenner, who now stands as one of the world’s highest-paid supermodels, winning contracts for and gracing the front cover of Vogue.
And she insists her success isn’t all from her mom and sisters! "[KUWTK] almost made my job a little bit harder only because people probably didn't want to hire me because I was on a reality TV show,” Kendall said. “I definitely worked my way to where I am now."
27. Gigi Hadid
Another multi-millionaire supermodel in the same “gang” as Kendall Jenner is the trend-setting Gigi Hadid. For the last 8 years, she’s been making a name for herself in one of the world’s most exclusive industries, and she’s finally starting to feel like she’s in the right place.
"It feels like now I'm in a different place in my life," she said, in regard to some of the more turbulent early years of her life. And it’s no surprise - she now has a whopping net worth of $29mil, according to CelebrityNetWorth, and she’s just become a mother too!
26. Emily Ratajkowski
When Robin Thicke’s hit song Blurred Lines came out, no one could have anticipated that one of the nameless models in the video would go on to be the most talked-about it-girls of the 2010s. That’s right, we're talking about the influential supermodel Emily Ratajkowski.
This bombshell is living proof that multiple dreams can come true - not only is she a world-famous supermodel, but she’s also a loving mom to her son Sylvester, has her own bikini line, is a staunch and outspoken feminist and she just released her first memoir. Color us impressed!
25. Addison Rae
Thousands of people have been finding their 15 minutes of fame posting 60-second videos on TikTok, but this next it-girl has had a lot more than 15 minutes. And she’s proven that she’s one in a million! Addison Rae is the Tiktoker powerhouse whose name is on everyone's lips right now.
Whether she’s serving slick moves on her TikTok dance challenges or working on her makeup line, it’s safe to say that this 21-year-old is on the verge of something great. And with over 85 million followers, she’s got a lot of people watching her journey to fame.
24. Megan Fox
These days everyone’s waiting to see what Megan Fox will do next since she captured the public’s attention due to her whirlwind romance with her new beau Machine Gun Kelly. And her it-girl status is definitely helped by her appearances in multiple hit films in the mid-2000s.
Though some people were scandalized by the latest PDA-filled tabloid pics with her rapper boyfriend, it’s clear that Fox isn’t getting bogged down by other people’s opinions. To be fair, with the FHM Online title of "Sexiest Woman in The World," she can probably do whatever she wants.
23. Irina Shayk
When Irina Shayk first appeared on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition back in 2011, it was clear that her life was about to change forever. And it did. After all, the beauty was the very first Russian woman to ever appear on such an issue.
Since then she’s come incredibly far, being one of the most famous supermodels in the industry. And plenty of other celebs were more than happy to welcome her. Chrissy Teigen was one such person, telling Shayk, "I said this the day I met you, and many years later, you are still theeeeee most beautiful woman in the world."
22. Cara Delevingne
When Cara Delevingne first burst onto the scene, it was clear that the fashion world, and pop culture, would never be the same. She was definitely one of the most unique new models to hit the entertainment industry - and for those who don’t believe us, just ask fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld.
"Cara is different," Lagerfeld told interviewers when asked about the exuberant young star. "She's full of life, full of pep. I like girls to be wild but at the same time beautifully brought up and very funny.” And in our opinion, that’s an almost perfect way to describe her!
21. Kaia Gerber
Considering that her mother, Cindy Crawford, was once one of the world’s highest-earning supermodels, it should come as no surprise that her daughter has decided to pick up the family tradition. And at just 20-years old Kaia Gerber is certainly filling the role well.
Despite only modeling for a few years, Gerber has already become one of the must-watch models of her generation. And she’s not stopping there. Just recently she ticked an item off her bucket list when she starred in the show American Horror Story. We certainly can’t wait to see what she does next!
20. Kylie Jenner
Who would have thought that the most entrepreneurial Kardashian would also be the youngest member of the family? Since she hit adulthood Kylie Jenner has been blowing us all away with the empire she’s built for herself, and all we can say is - you go, girl!
Not only has she tried her hand at making pop hits and releasing an enormously successful cosmetics brand, but she’s also done it all while being a full-time mom! Not everyone can claim such a feat, and we’re sure she’s only going to continue dominating the markets in the future.
19. Kim Kardashian
We’ve talked about Kylie and Kendall, so everyone knows who we have to talk about next. After all, what would the modern 2000s it-girl look like without one of the first templates - Kim Kardashian? After all, their older sis pretty much created the selfie and selfie culture!
While not everyone may be happy about that, we’re sure Kim isn’t fazed by the haters. There are plenty of people who still love everything that she does, including her ex-hubby Kanye, who once said "I'm talkin' like arguably of human existence—the top 10 of human existence," about his former beau.
18. Kate Upton
Everyone’s heard the story - a small-town girl (or boy) leaves town to make it big. But in some cases, it really does happen. Just look at Kate Upton! After leaving Michigan for the big city, Upton scored her first appearance on Sports Illustrated's swimsuit edition in 2012, a major booking for a young model.
But Upton isn’t just an influential it-girl because she’s scored so many modeling jobs since then. Like Ashley Graham, Upton went out of her way to prove that we don’t have to fit into the stick-thin stereotypes of the modeling industry, and she even nabbed some Hollywood roles along the way. We couldn’t be happier for her!
17. Alexandra Daddario
With her shocking blue eyes and stunning looks, it’s not so hard to see why Alexandra Daddario has done so well in Hollywood and garnered so many fans through the course of her career. But in truth, her success is due to far more than just her good looks.
If anything, it’s because she’s undoubtedly put in the hard yards. “I've been working consistently since I was a teenager, and I was in the service industry myself for four years, or longer, in various jobs," she said of her early life. If we need any motivation to work hard, Daddario should be it!
Nothing says ‘it-girl’ more than owning one of the trendiest luxury fashion brands on the planet! This is why our list wouldn’t be complete without Fenty owner Rihanna, one of the most versatile and fashionable stars in the business, who has dabbled in music, fashion, makeup, and more!
Though admittedly she hasn’t recorded any pop bangers recently, rumors about RiRi’s next up-and-coming project have been floating around, and we couldn’t be more excited. Whatever she releases, we know this empire-building beauty is going to make even more waves!
15. Margot Robbie
"It’s not overnight. It's years of hard work," is how Margot Robbie described her rapid ascent to the top of Hollywood. Though she may seem to have it all - beauty, talent, and a great personality, it’s good to see a starlet who knows what it takes to achieve your dreams.
And the Australian bombshell keeps showing us that no matter how far she comes, she’ll always stay down-to-earth. And that can’t be an easy feat, especially when given the DKODING magazine’s title of "The Most Beautiful Woman in The World" which is exactly what happened to Robbie in 2020.
14. HoYeon Jung
Sometime’s all it takes is one big break to blow someone into the entertainment stratosphere. Just ask Korean actress HoYeon Jung, the 27-year old who become an overnight sensation after appearing as one of the main characters in the hit Netflix show Squid Game.
Jung got her first taste of fame when she came second on the reality show Korea's Next Top Model, but it was her role in the acclaimed horror show that changed everything. This super stylish star may have only risen to fame recently, but it’s clear she’s got a lot of success ahead of her.
There’s a reason she’s been dubbed “Queen B” by her fans - who comes closer to industry royalty than the larger-than-life superstar Beyonce? She’s released countless hits, from dance anthems to breakup bangers, and we’re always waiting with bated breath for her next track.
Though we’re surprised she even has time to keep releasing music, what with her working for countless beauty campaigns and juggling being a mom to three children! And it looks like her success is rubbing off, with 9-year old Blue Ivy Carter already winning her first Grammy. What a family!
12. Gal Gadot
Since she’s known to the world as Wonder Woman, she was practically guaranteed to become one of Hollywood’s number one it-girls (or should we say, It-Woman!) from the start. And considering how quickly she has risen to fame, we’re guessing it can’t be too easy being Gal Godot.
After all, Godot not only has to uphold her reputation as an actress, but also the associations of playing such a famous character. As the global brand president of Revlon put it, "She's a worldwide symbol of feminine strength and beauty, but she's also a modern, multifaceted woman."
11. Scarlett Johansson
Since the early 2000s, Scarlett Johansson has been drawing attention with her wicked acting skills, good looks, and gravelly tone. And today, she’s very much a household name. But according to Forbes, she was also the highest-paid actress of 2019, placing her in a very significant position in the industry. And she knows it.
"It is really important to hear people in various positions of power to voice their opinions, their story," she said about her newfound influence. "Why not? Why can't I have the voice? Why can't I use my platform? What's the point... if you don't use it?" A woman who knows how to use her power for good? We love to see it!
10. Winnie Harlow
From the very first moment she appeared on our screens, this America's Next Top Model caught our eyes (and our hearts!). Winnie Harlow has always stood out, and not just for her statuesque beauty. But she’s used her uniqueness to her advantage, and even changed the modeling industry in the process.
As someone who has lived with vitiligo, a condition that affects both her immune system and the appearance of her skin, Harlow has pushed back against stereotypical beauty standards. "Winnie's unique look challenges perceptions of beauty in an industry obsessed with a kind of 'perfection,'" the designed Ashish once said.
9. Mila Kunis
When someone is voted Esquire's "Sexiest Woman Alive," they’re probably going to have otherworldly confidence. And when it comes to Mila Kunis, who held the 2012 title, we think that’s a safe bet to make. "If I wanted to charm the pants off you, I could,” the beloved actress admitted.
“She’s the most beautiful, opinionated, talkative, and funny movie star that we've all known since she was nine," is how Esquire described their 2012 winner. But despite that, she doesn’t let her looks and charm go to her head. And she’s more likely to be found in a t-shirt and jeans these days, which we love.
8. Taylor Swift
Since she first burst onto the scene in the late 2000s, Taylor Swift has absolutely dominated the music industry. After coming in 1st place on Maxim’s "Hot 100" list in 2015, we’d be forgiven for thinking things couldn’t get any better for the star. But she’s only gone from strength to strength each year since.
And if her industry success isn’t enough, she wins a million extra brownie points due to her passion for social activism. "To me, feminism is probably the most important movement that you could embrace," she recently told Maxim. "Because it's just basically another word for equality."
7. Selena Gomez
At this point, who isn’t in love with Selena Gomez? The Disney show Wizard’s of Waverly Place first aired in 2007, and from its first episode her fate was set - from that point on she became one of the world’s biggest teen stars, and even now as an adult, her enormous fanbase hasn’t let up.
It’s probably due to the myriad qualities she brings to her music and screen performances. Look at TC Candler and The Independent Critics' "100 Most Beautiful Faces of 2020," which included Gomez. "Aesthetic perfection is only one of the criteria," the rest being "Grace, elegance, originality, daring, passion, class, poise, joy."
6. Madison Beer
When a celebrity as famous as Justin Bieber tweets s music to his millions of fans, we know they’re about to be in for a crazy ride. And that’s exactly what happened to the singer Madison beer, who skyrocketed to fame after a shoutout from JB back in 2012.
And once Bieber Fever descended upon the unwitting 13-year old, her life would never be the same. Today, she’s built a fantastic career as a naturally beautiful and talented singer, but she’s also notable for her willingness to speak out about mental health, and we couldn’t love her more for it.
5. Emily Faye Miller
Netflix’s new show Too Hot To Handle may not have been around for very long, but these days it only takes a single night (or single episode) to launch someone into the public eye. And once viewers saw her swanning and sunning on the Turks and Caicos Islands, Emily Faye Miller got to experience this first-hand.
And she’s certainly taken advantage of her Too Hot To Handle fame, even collaborating with Pretty Little Thing after starting her entrepreneurial journey. And if that’s not impressive enough, she’s made it her mission to promote the importance of self-worth to her fans - a truly worthy way to use her celebrity platform.
4. Francesca Farago
Emily Faye Miller isn’t the only Too Hot To Handle star who got on Lana’s bad side - super sweet Francesca Farago was also in the firing line, but she hasn’t let it get her down. Though she didn’t come out on top when it came to finding love with Harry Jowsey, she’s certainly won in other ways.
Today, our favorite Canadian reality star has embraced being single, putting her efforts into other ventures. Namely, starting her own business: Farago the Label. We wish her all the success in the world with her new bikini line, and can’t wait to nab one for ourselves!
There’s no way we’d miss this quintessential it-girl. Whether it’s due to her roles in the HBO hit show Euphoria, or in the worldwide blockbuster Dune, it seems like everyone wants a piece of Zendaya. And she’s using her influence wisely, putting much of her energy into social activism (which she’s also won awards for!).
And it’s not just her fans who love her - she’s being gassed up by Hollywood legends too! "At 24, that she can have an idea and go get it done [with] enough support behind her... [and] power and [the ability] to keep the creativity — I think that says so much," said fellow star Halle Berry. We couldn’t agree more.
2. Blake Lively
We can’t imagine looking constantly, effortlessly photo-ready, but Blake Lively proves that it really is possible. Since her early days playing the Upper East Side party girl Serena van der Woodsen in Gossip Girl, Blake Lively has been commanding everyone’s attention.
But these days she’s settled into more mature film roles, and we couldn’t be happier for her. And though she was dubbed "The World's Most Desirable Woman," by the website AskMen, with three daughters and Ryan Reynolds under her thumb, she’s probably too busy to be fazed by it.
1. Bella Hadid
When a world-famous cosmetic surgeon (in this case, Julian DeSilva), declares that someone has one of the most aesthetically perfect faces on earth “according to science,” they’ve pretty much got the world in their pocket. For Bella Hadid, it’s just another day.
And this uber-famous supermodel doesn’t let her looks define her. By jumping into the business world with her seltzer brand Kin, and receiving numerous accolades for her charity work, this famous beauty proves that something that many people doubt - you really can have it all.