50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2021 (Forbes)

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020

You have just been asked in an exam to write the names of the 50 most popular women in the world, what will your list look like?

Most people consider popularity to mean being known by a lot of people.

Well, that may not be too far from the truth. However, being popular means a bit more than that.

According to the Cambridge dictionary, popularity means to be enjoyed, liked and supported by many people.

So, yes, popular people are known by plenty of people.

But not just that, they are liked and supported by these plenty of people.

So, who are the most popular women in the world? Which women are most known, loved and supported worldwide?

Or to put it in another perspective, which women have the largest or strongest fan base in the world.

At a time when the world is seriously fighting for equal opportunity for women,

there are women who may not necessarily be needing these new opportunities as they

have already taken the bull by the horn in their respective fields earning them the

well-deserved popularity.

From sports to politics, business and entertainments, here are the 50 most popular women in the world today.

 

50. Taylor Swift

She is an American singer and songwriter. Born Taylor Alison Swift, Taylor is made songs mostly from her personal life experience.

This earned her an equal amount of criticism and praise from different sections of the public.

She was signed by Sony/ATV Music at the age of 14.

Her debut album was the 2000s longest-charting album in the United States.

Of course, she has several awards and recognition’s to her name and often praised for writing her own songs.

49. Serena Williams

Serena is one of the most successful and greatest female athletes. Apart from being a successful tennis player, Serena Williams is a global icon and an inspiration to many women in the world.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She is an American tennis player and she maintained the position of the number 1 female tennis player for years, which absolutely qualifies her to be listed among 50 Most Popular Women in the World

48. Selena Gomez

For a very long time, Selena Gomez held the position of being the most followed celebrity on Instagram, an American singer, actress and songwriter.

Selena has been on the screen since her childhood days in the Barney & Friends television series (2002 – 2004).

She has won several awards as a singer and actor.

She was always in the news when dating fellow singer, Justin Bieber. The news of their eventual breakup left several fans broken.

47. Rihanna

Rihanna is a Barbadian singer and songwriter known in virtually all the countries of the world.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 12: Rihanna attends Rihanna’s 5th Annual Diamond Ball at Cipriani Wall Street on September 12, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images)

She is often praised for her ability to adapt to different music styles and staying relevant for so long.

Born Robyn Rihanna Fenty, Rihanna has several awards to her name and has performed on

some of the biggest stages many can only dream of.

Like Marilyn Monroe, she is also seen as a sex symbol.

46. Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth became the Queen of England in 1952 following the death of her father.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

For almost 70 years, she has led the UK and held things down in other Commonwealth

affairs and without a single doubt or contemplation, she is among 50 Most Popular Women in the World.

Before becoming the queen, she was in the Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War

II.

 

45. Priyanka Chopra

Indian actress, Priyanka Chopra is also a singer, film producer and model.

She won the Miss World in 2000 and she is one of the highest-paid celebrities in India.

Priyanka was named by Times as one of the 100 most influential people in the world and she has several awards and recognition’s to her name, which makes it pretty easy to rank her among 50 Most Popular Women in the World.

44. Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey is an American media executive, talk show host, TV producer and philanthropist.

Her highly emotional TV show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, is followed by viewers in most countries of the world.

She was once declared the richest African American of the 20th century.

Yes, she is that rich. Oprah is also the greatest African American philanthropist in the history of the US.

 

43. Nicki Minaj

Nicki is a well-known multiple award-winning American rapper and pop singer.

She first got our attention in 2007 when she released the mixtape Playtime is Over.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She followed it up with another mixtape in 2008, Sucka Free, and then Beam Me Up Scotty in 2009.

After conquering grounds in the music industry, she started making appearances in movies too.

Times named her in the 2016 list of the Time 100.

42. Nancy Pelosi

Nancy is an American politician and a beacon of hope for women in leadership.

She is a very popular woman globally, especially in politics and leadership.

Nancy Pelosi currently serves as the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, becoming the first woman to occupy the seat. She is also the highest-ranking female elected official in the US.

 

41. Michelle Obama

If Michelle Obama the former first lady of the United States is not all this list of the 50 Most Popular Women in the World, it did really raise an eyebrow for a woman who has served for 8 years the best form of what it feels like to be a black woman and a first lady of the most powerful nation in history.

Before becoming the first lady, she worked as a lawyer, writer and university administrator.

Just like her husband being the first African American President of the United States,

she also made history by being the first African American to be the first lady of the US.

 

40. Miley Cyrus

Miley is a known American singer, actress and songwriter.

She is also a philanthropist and has donated large amounts of money to noble courses.

She is a flexible artist having released different types of sounds including country-pop, pop and hip-hop.

 

39. Melinda Gates

Melinda is a former general manager at Microsoft and is now a philanthropist.

Her work to humanity is acknowledged all over the world.

She is married to Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, who is one of the richest men in the world.

They both run the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the largest charitable private organization in the world.

 

38. Meghan Markle

Meghan Markle is the Duchess of Sussex which alone is enough to make anyone popular.

Aside from that though, Meghan had been famous before marrying into the royal family having

been an actress.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – MARCH 12: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Meghan Markle attends the 2018 Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey on March 12, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

Having featured in different minor roles in the past, she got her first big break in the 2011’s

suits which ran for seven years.

She is a strong advocate for gender equality and inspires many feminists around the world.

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37. Megan Fox

Megan is an American model and actress who has been famous since 2001 when her acting career started.

She has continued to grow year in year out.

Seen as a sex symbol, Megan Fox often covers magazines such as Maxim, FHM and Rolling Stone.

36. Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe died in 1962 but over five decades later, she is still one of the most popular women in the world.

an American actress, singer and model famous for playing comedic “blonde bombshell” characters, making her a sex symbol.

It’s safe to say she helped change attitudes towards sexuality.

35. Mariah Carey

Mariah is a vocally talented singer, songwriter, record producer, actress and businesswoman.

She is popular for creating award-winning love songs.

She is a highly successful musician with several awards to her name.

In the 1990s, she was the most successful artist in the US and one of the best-selling artists in the world.

34. Madonna

Madonna is an American iconic songwriter and singer,  also an actress and businesswoman.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She earned her title as the “Queen of Pop” from her mastery of song composure and her videos being imagery-rich.

Madonna is a source of inspiration to many young artists with fans across the globe.

33. Lana Del Rey

Lana is yet another American singer, record producer and songwriter.

She is often praised for producing music cinematic quality.

She has a great influence on the pop culture with themes like glamour, tragic romance and melancholia.

32. Lady Gaga

Known widely as Lady Gaga, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta is an American singer, actress and songwriter.

She started singing as a child at open mics and acted in school plays.

However, she dropped out of school to face her music.

 

31. Kylie Minogue

Kylie is an Australian songwriter, actress and singer whose popularity cuts across in the

entertainment and fashion industry, while also the highest-selling female Australian artist of all time.

She started her career began as an actress in an Australian soap opera before moving to the UK where she ventured into music.

She has succeeded in building a successful musical career which explains why she is on this list.

30. Kylie Jenner

Kylie Jenner is another American media personality that came famous through the Keeping Up with Kardashians reality show.

She also owns a cosmetic company known as Kylie Cosmetics.

She also co-owns a clothing line, Kendall & Kylie, with her sister.

In 2015, Time Magazine named her and her sister among the most influential teens in the world.

 

29. Kristen Stewart

Kristen is an American movie director and actress with recognitions for her work.

She was the world highest paid actress between 2010 and 2012.

 

28. Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian is no doubt one of the most popular women in the world.

But for this list of 50 most popular women in the world in 2020, she takes the number 28 spot.

Her husband, Kanye West recently became a millionaire and many believe she played an important role in that achievement.

Kim is a media personality, model, actress, socialite and everything in between.

She blew up real big following the release of her sex tape with her then boyfriend,

Ray J.

Not long after she along with her family started a reality TV show, Keeping up with the

Kardashians, that earned her millions of fans worldwide.

 

27. Kesha

Kesha Rose Sebert is a talented American singer, rapper, songwriter and actress.

She became famous after she featured in fellow rapper, Flo Rida’s number one single Right Around.

Her albums have been hugely successful since then having several chart-topping sales.

 

26. Katy Perry

Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson, known widely as Katy Perry is a singer and songwriter.

She started singing in church as a child and initially wanted to become a professional gospel singer.

Her gospel album was not successful and this made her venture into secular music a year later.

One of the Boys, her second album, was what shot her to the limelight.

She has gone to produce several other award-winning songs after that.

 

25. Kate Middleton

Kate is a member of the British Royal family.

Also known as Catherine, she is the Duchess of Cambridge.

She is married to Prince Williams who is inline to become the next king of the United Kingdom.

In other words, Kate is inline to become the next queen consort.

 

24. Jessica Alba

Jessica is another American actress and businesswoman, started acting since she was 13

but got her big break from her role in the Dark Angel Television Series, giving her a

nomination for Golden Globe Award for that movie.

She has featured in several other movies and continued to pursue a business on the side.

 

23. Jenifer Lopez

Who doesn’t know JLo? Jenifer Lopez is a known American Singer, songwriter, actress, producer, designer, business woman, okay she does everything.

Many people may not know but Jenifer Lopez’s career started with dancing before she went acting, and then singing.

She is up there as one of the highest paid actresses and also has successful music career.

 

22. Ivanka Trump

Daughter of the US President, Ivanka Trump is a fashion designer, author, business woman and relativity TV personality.Ivanka Trump

She was once the executive vice president of her father’s business.

 

21. Hilary Clinton

She is so popular and influential that she almost became the first female US President before losing to Donald Trump at the polls.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

Aside being an American politician, Hilary Clinton is a diplomat, lawyer, writer, activist and

public speaker.

She was the First Lady of the United States between 1993 and 2001.

 

20. Heidi Klum Heidi

Heidi Klum Heidi is a German-American TV personality, model, fashion designer, television producer, author, singer and actress.

Being a woman of many hats, she has been able to interact with a huge audiences and visited most countries in the world.

 

19. Halle Berry

Halle Berry started her acting career as far back as 1989, but a lot of people knew from her role in 2001’s romantic drama, Monster’s Ball.

Her performance in the movie won her Academy Award for Best Actress, making her the first woman from African American origin to win the award.

When she is not delivering award-winning performances in the make-believe world, she is busy pursuing her other passion which is modelling.

She once contested in the Miss USA pageantry and went on to represent the United States at the global stage in the Miss World.

Her consistency in the entertainment world for more than 3 decades has cemented her

place in the hearts of millions of fans all over the world, making her the 19th most popular woman in the world.

 

18. Greta Thunberg

Let’s go away from entertainment and talk about someone who is passionate about our

environment and its well-being. Greta Thunberg, an environmental activist, is famous for inspiring young people all over

world to call for radical changes in the protection of our planet.

Though a teenager, Greta has built a massive follower-ship on the international stage and

has spoken at some high-profile events organized by the United Nations and other renowned international bodies.

 

17. Eva Longoria

Okay, entertainers again. You really can’t beat them on this, can you?

Eva is a producer, director, actress and activist.

Eva Longoria

She broke into limelight after playing Isabella Brata in the soap opera The Young and the Restless on CBS.

She has been a part of some other television series including The Desperate Housewives which earned more fame and awards.

 

16. Emma Watson

Emma Watson is an English model, actress and activist. She got trained as an actress at the Stagecoach Theatre Arts in Oxford.

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50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She shot to limelight after she played Hermoine Granger in the Harry Potter series.

Other movies she has acted in include The Tale of Despereaux, Ballet Shoes, Beauty and

the Beast, Little Women and The Circle among others.

 

15. Ellie Golding

Known widely as Ellie Golding, Elena Jane Golding is an English songwriter and singer.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

In 2009 dropped her debut album and started winning awards from then onward.

She started playing the guitar and clarinet as a child and went on badge a degree in Drama and Theatre. She started singing before graduating.

 

14. Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen a American TV personality, comedian, writer and actress. Her TV show, which she named after herself, is a source of inspiration to many. Many hail for her for being bold enough to come out publicly as a gay.

 

13. Demi Lovato

And yet another musician, Demi Lovato is an American songwriter, singer, actress and TV personality. 50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)She started her career in 2002 when she featured in Barney & Friends, a children’s television series.

She then went on to become a Disney Chanel before launching a career in music with her first album dropping in 2008.

The many awards she has won include 3 BRIT awards, 1 MTV Video Music Awards, 2 Latin American Music Award, 5 People’s Choice Awards, 14 Teen Choice Awards among others.

 

12. Christina Aguilera

US seems to be really representing on this list. Christina is yet another American songwriter, singer, actress and Television personality.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She has 5 Grammy awards and one Latin Grammy award and a star at the Hollywood Hall of Fame, all to show for her outstanding career.

She is one of the one of the best-selling music artistes in the world and by implication, she is one of the most popular women in Nigeria.

 

11. Cher

Cher is an actress, singer and television personality. earning herself the title of the goddess and appear not to be slowing down despite being 73 years old.

She rose to limelight in 1965 and has enjoyed ever alongside her beloved husband, Sonny with whom they both worked to create a folk-rock duo.

She later became a TV personality hosting The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour.

 

10. Cardi B

Many Nigerians will still remember how much vibes she carries following her visit to the country in 2019.

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From the warm reception she got from Nigerians, there is no doubt the love her fans got for her.

Cardi B is another American rapper, songwriter, actress and TV personality.

She literally came out of nowhere and became a sensation in the music industry.

breaking into the limelight in 2015 and 2017 after she posted viral videos online, followed this up the release of hits upon hits.

Even Forbes recognized her as the most influential female rapper of all time and she is one to never run away from controversy, which makes her a perfect fit to be listed among 50 Most Popular Women in the World.

 

9. Camila Cabello

Cuban American, singer, songwriter and actress, Camila Cabello Estrabao is quite a popular woman in the entertainment industry.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She was once a member of a music group known as Fifth Harmony which contested in the X Factor USA in 2012.

She, however, went solo a few years later. Camila released her debut album only in 2018 which peaked on the number 1 spot on the Billboard 200 chart.

She many awards and recognition in her short musical career which puts her on this list effortlessly.

 

8. Britney Spears

Britney is a well-known American singer and songwriter. She is also a dancer and has acted in quite a number of Hollywood movies too.

She broke into the limelight as far back as 1997 after signing a contract with Jive Records.

Her albums in 1999 and 2000 made her the best-selling teenage artist ever and she also got nicknamed “Princess of Pop”.

She has gone ahead to produce chart-topping music since, taking home several awards.

 

7. Beyonce Knowles

I’m sure you bet Beyonce is on this list, you just can’t place on what spot. Well, here she is. Mrs Carter is the 7th among the 50 most popular women in the world in 2021.

With over 139 million followers on Instagram, there is no denying Beyonce has a massive fan base – The Beehives.

She is, like several others on this list, an American singer and songwriter, record producer,

philanthropist, actress and activist.

Beyonce is no doubt a role model and source of inspiration to several other singers in the world.

She started enjoying fame in the 90s and maintained relevance to date.

Of course, her high profile marriage to rap legend, Jay Z is one of the reasons she is more popular, a marriage they earned them the “Power Couple” tag.

 

6. Avril Lavigne

Avril is a Canadian-French songwriter, singer and actress and you can say she embodies the importance of arts and music.

 

She started a journey to stardom from a very young age of 16 when she had a contract worth more than $2 million.

Avril Lavigne is a pioneer of female-driven punk-influenced pop music.

She is the third best-selling Canadian female artist only behind Celine Dion and Shania Twain.

 

5. Ariana Grande

She is a Florida-born American singer and actress.

She shot to limelight through the Nickelodeon television series, Victorious between 2010 and 2013, and its spin-off Sam & Cat (2013/2014).

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

From there, she launched her music career she has been quite spectacular.

Within a short while, she has won for herself Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal, two

Billboard Music Awards, a Brit Award, seven Guinness World Records and three American Music Awards.

With over 40 billion streams on digital music platforms such as Youtube, Spotify and Apple Music, Ariana Grande is the fifth most popular women in the world.

 

4. Angelina Jolie

One time the highest-paid actress in Hollywood, Angelina Jolie is one of the 50 most famous American women in the world.

Her acting talent has won her several awards including Academy Awards and Golden Globe Awards.

Aside from acting, she is also producer, screenwriter and director. Her influence is not limited to

America alone, but also in the world.

 

3. Angela Merkel

Becoming the German Chancellor in 2005, Angela Merkel has established herself as a pioneer among female world leaders.50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She is a source of inspiration to many women across the globe who want to venture into politics.

Angela was the leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) from 2010 to 2018 before resigning.

As the de facto leader of the European Union, Angela Merkel is the most powerful woman in the world.

 

2. Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys hosted the 2020 Grammy Awards, confirming her status as one of the most popular women in the world.

50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

The American singer and songwriter started her career from the age of 15, meaning she

has been on the stage for over a decade.

She also has multiple awards to her name including the Grammys.

When she is not giving us goosebumps with her music, she engages in humanitarian work

and activism all which make her a role model for many.

 

1. Adele – The Most Popular Woman in the World

The Hello crooner is not one to be introduced, especially when she is top on the list of the

50 most popular women in the world.50 Most Popular Women in the World in 2020 (Forbes)

She is an English singer and songwriter and one of the world’s best-selling music artists.

Time Magazine named her as one of the most influential women in the world twice – 2012 and 2016.

In 2016-2017, she did a tour which broke the attendance record in many countries, including

the UK, US and Australia.

As it stands today, Adele is the most popular woman in the world in 2020.

 

 



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