15 ’90s Icons Who Are Still Thriving Today

The ’90s were golden years for movie and TV stars. Many of our favorite ’90s icons are still doing what they love and looking amazing. They just prove that you can be happy at any age and that careers don’t have an expiration date.

We at Bright Side believe you can thrive at any age. Just look at these 15 celebs who are still living their dreams for 30 years and counting.

1. Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts shot to fame in the late 1980s and was a rom-com staple in the ’90s. She is still acting now, taking on more challenging roles — and has even won 3 Golden Globes and an Oscar along the way.

2. Winona Ryder

Winona Ryder was the “it girl” of the ’80s and ’90s. She starred in everything from cult classics like Beetlejuice and Edward Scissorhands, to award-winning films like Little Women, which earned her an Oscar nomination. She struggled as a young star which led her to take a break from acting. She returned to acting in 2006 and worked on movies like Black Swan. She found huge success again on Stranger Things, proving that no matter what struggles you have, you can always bounce back with your talent.

3. Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston was 25 when she starred as Rachel Green in the hit sitcom Friends. After 10 years on the show, she moved on to movies but mainly worked on rom-coms. That is, until her dramatic performance in Cake, earned her huge praise. Now, Jennifer is back on TV, starring on The Morning Show with her friend Reese Witherspoon (who played her sister on Friends).

4. Sarah Michelle Gellar

Sarah Michelle Gellar played Buffy in Buffy The Vampire Slayer for 7 years. She also had a strong film career in hits like Cruel Intentions. She is still acting today but also focuses on being a mother, charity work, and her baked goods business Foodstirs.

5. Brandy Norwood

Brandy’s quadruple-platinum first album was released when she was 15. In between her music career, she found time to make some great movies, like Cinderella with Whitney Houston. After a stint on Dancing with the Stars and some reality TV, Brandy struggled for a while. But she found her feet again when she came back to acting, on TV and in Chicago on Broadway, which she said “saved” her. She has a close relationship with her daughter too.

6. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen

Mary-Kate and Ashley were 2 of the busiest actresses in Hollywood since they were 9 months old. In 2012, they announced their retirement from acting. Now the twins, who are 35, focus on their fashion label and businesses.

7. Alicia Silverstone

Alicia Silverstone starred as the iconic Cher Horowitz in Clueless in 1995. Nowadays, she is still an actress, starring in many TV shows. She is also an animal rights activist and the author of a book on being vegan.

8. Will Smith

Will Smith starred in the popular show The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. He was a very busy actor through the ’90s and 2000s and still is today. He is also a producer now and has over 9 million subscribers on his YouTube channel, where he documents his adventures. He is happy in his relationship with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith and is a father of 3 children.

9. Mädchen Amick

Mädchen starred as Shelly Johnson in Twin Peaks. Since then, she has been one of the show’s most prolific alumni. She’s had great roles in Gilmore Girls, ER, Gossip Girl, and most recently, Riverdale. She is a proud mother of her son and daughter.

10. Julia Stiles

Julia Stiles shot to fame with the success of the 1999 rom-com, 10 Things I Hate About You. She took some time off from acting to start a family. But now, after the birth of her son, she is back on movie and TV screens.

11. Gabrielle Union

Gabrielle Union became a household name in movies like 10 Things I Hate About You and Bring It On. She has maintained her acting career since then and was a judge on America’s Got Talent. She married former NBA player Dwyane Wade and, together, they have a daughter. She also loves sharing her daughter’s sweetest and funniest moments on Instagram.

12. Leonardo DiCaprio

At just 19, Leo was nominated for his first Oscar for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. He became a mega-star and a ’90s heartthrob after his roles in Titanic and Romeo + Juliet. He is still one of the best actors working today, starring in huge blockbuster movies. But he is also a producer now, and a leading environmental activist. 23 years later, he is still best friends with his Titanic co-star Kate Winslet.

13. Joshua Jackson

Joshua Jackson was teen heartthrob Pacey Witter on Dawson’s Creek. Since the show ended he has carried on acting, starring in successful TV shows like The Affair and Dr. Death. He is very happily married to British actress Jodie Turner-Smith and they have a daughter together.

14. Lisa Kudrow

Lisa Kudrow’s iconic role as Phoebe Buffay on Friends earned her 6 Emmy nominations and she won one. She continued starring in classic comedy movies while on the show and has even produced, written, and starred in her own series. She has continued to act in movies and TV shows. She also still has a group chat with her Friends co-stars Jennifer Aniston and Courteney Cox — TV friendships can last forever.

15. Ethan Hawke

Ethan Hawke starred with Robin Williams in the emotional film Dead Poets Society and in the romantic movie Before Sunrise. Since then, he has starred in more than 80 movies. He is constantly challenging himself in the roles he takes on. This has paid off, earning him 4 Oscar nominations and a Tony. He also writes novels and plays guitar. He has 2 children from his first marriage, including rising acting star Maya Hawke, and 2 from his second.

Who is your favorite ’90s movie star? If you could tell your past ’90s self one thing, what would it be?

Psst! Bright Side has real quizzes now. We publish new ones daily. Go check them out.

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