Forbes Top Female Celebrities: Young and Powerful

Forbes' annual list of most powerful celebrities measures a combination of earnings, fame, and impact. They talk to industry insiders, count social media mentions, and conduct in-depth reports to gather the most important entertainers of our time. Number 1 goes to Beyonce, who just had her biggest year yet with the release of her eponymous album and a world tour. She's also a business magnate, mother, and the face of Time's list of 100 Most Influential People this year.

Forbes features 33 women on their list of 100 most powerful celebrities. A third of those women are under 30. Meanwhile, only 6 percent of the men are under 30 (we counted the members of One Direction as one entity), and most of them are athletes.

This kind of high earning and achievement is a special accomplishment for stars still in their 20s. As their careers continue, they have amazing women to look up to: Oprah Winfrey and Ellen Degeneres join Beyonce in the top five.

Click through the gallery to meet the driven, talented young women making a difference in entertainment today. And watch the videos below to meet our MAKERS on the list, Oprah, Ellen, and Zooey Deschanel.


At #8, 26-year-old Rihanna is the most powerful female musician after Beyonce. She's also the most powerful social media user after Justin Bieber, a fashion risk-taker, and a philanthropist. 

Whether she's playing Cleopatra or dancing in a candyland, Katy Perry is a performing powerhouse. Her latest album Prism was her fastest-selling yet, and had the highest first week sales since Madonna's MDNA. 

Jennifer Lawrence is an accomplished actress. She's an Oscar winner and, most recently, an action hero in The Hunger Games and X-Men: Days of Future Past. The 23-year-old is upfront about eating burgers before the red carpet and feeling starstruck, making her beloved by young fans. 

Miley Cyrus made a radical transformation from Disney TV star to pop sensation. Today, she's touring to promote her platinum album Bangerz. The 20-year-old ranks #17 on Forbes celeb list. 

Taylor Swift made country cool with her dear-diary lyrics and romantic music videos. She also ranks #5 on Forbes' social media list, and regularly responds to fans' posts on Instagram. 

No other star wears meat and kermit like Lady Gaga. The 28-year-old pop singer earned $33 million this year, putting her 19th on Forbes' list. 

Coming back from an injury, tennis champion Maria Sharapova won her fifth Grand Slam title at the 2014 French Open. The 27-year-old is one of the world's highest earning athletes. She also started a candy line in 2012, cleverly named Sugarpova. 

This is the first time Scarlett Johansson has been listed on Forbes' top celebrity list. A combination of endorsements and roles in films like Captain America and Her earned 29-year-old Scarlett $17 million this year. 

Kate Upton rose to recent fame as a supermodel, appearing on three Sports Illustrated covers. The 22-year-old has also appeared on the cover of Vogue. 

The only female author on Forbes' celebrity list is 25-year-old Veronica Roth. She's the author of young adult dystopian trilogy "Divergent," which she started writing on winter break during her senior year at Northwestern University. 

Lena Dunham created and stars in the HBO TV series "Girls," for which she won two Golden Globes. She's currently working on a variety of films and will appear in Makers' Women in Hollywood documentary. Her first book, Not That Kind of Girl, will be published by Random House this September.

Kaley Cuoco stars in "The Big Bang Theory," one of the most profitable shows on TV. She's started a film career as well, starring opposite Kevin Hart in the upcoming The Wedding Ringer. The 28-year-old is also an animal lover who rides horses in her spare time.