Forbes has revealed the 10 highest paid celebrities under 30.
Young female musicians dominated the top-earning list. Unlike past years, Forbes excluded athletes from the list. Compared to 2011, eliminating athletes reduced the number of men (six to four), increased the number of women (four to six), elevated the influence of musicians (five to seven), and brought in Hollywood actors (zero to three). While it’s encouraging that women rule, it’s more likely that musicality matters more than gender. The dominance of female singers over male singers reflects more on consumerism than a changing social climate.
Musicians came, saw, and conquered. Taylor Swift nabbed the number one spot with $57 million. The country pop princess struck gold with her 65-day tour, (which raked in $1 million per night,) her 2010 album Speak Now, and her advertisements with CoverGirl. Justin Bieber followed the blonde songstress with $55 million. Particular endorsements aside, most musician's money comes from tours and album sales, showing that singers make much more money from their performances than actors do.
Women also rule the under-30 category. While the female-heavy list may suggest that women may be becoming more influential in younger generations, it’s unclear whether music or gender has more weight. Getting rid of mega athletes like LeBron James and Cristiano Ronaldos brought two extra women to the list, but these two ladies are also singers. In fact, the total supremacy of music overall suggests that music may matter more than gender.
Still, it’s worth asking why female singers rule. Selling a young solo female act seems easier than selling a young solo male act - Taylor Swift can be the face of endless consumer goods for young women. As a larger market, young women use social media and consume more in general. These young consumers also identify with Swift, Rihanna, Gaga, and Perry more than Lil' Wayne. They adore Bieber for his cute-factor rather than for his relatability. Men are still powerful as duos or groups (LMFAO, Maroon 5), but these boys split their earnings.
In any case, we would have seen few changes compared to past years had Forbes kept athletes in the mix. But, here's the full list top-10 list:
1. Taylor Swift ($57 million)
2. Justin Bieber ($55 million)
3. Rihanna ($53 million)
4. Lady Gaga ($52 million)
5. Katy Perry ($47 million)
6. Adele ($35 million)
7. Kristen Stewart ($34.5 million)
8. Lil’ Wayne ($27 million)
9. Taylor Lautner ($26.5 million)
10. Rob Pattinson ($26.5 million)