Selena Gomez might as well drop her last name. When someone says Selena, it's safe to say we will assume you mean Selena Gomez. She's lived her life publicly since she was a teenager, so a lot of details about her have been shared with the masses, sometimes even when it wasn't her choice. We can't imagine having to live under a microscope and having our every move watched. But then again, we can't imagine what it's like to see ourselves on the big screen or sell out shows. We know stuff like she had a starring role on a show on The Disney Channel for years. We know she was born and raised in Texas. We know that she's a singer and actress. And yes, even our moms know that she dated Justin Bieber. But you probably didn't know these things about her.
15 She met Demi Lovato in line while auditioning for Barney
It's a pretty well known fact that Selena and Demi Lovato both were on the very popular kids show, Barney, when they were young. But the story of how when they actually met? Well, it's adorable. They've both talked about the day they met before in interviews years ago, when they were best friends—they've also talked about how they've drifted throughout the years. Basically they were in line for their Barney audition in Texas, on Selena's birthday. She even remembered that Demi was wearing a blue jean jacket and a red bow. Talk about a photographic memory. How cool is it that these two not only met in line of their audition, but they both booked the show and became who they are today?
14 She was named after the famous singer, Selena
Selena Gomez was in fact named after the very popular Latin singer and actress, Selena Quintanilla. Selena Quintanilla is the Queen of Tejano, a mixture of American and Mexican music from Texas. She was tragically shot and killed by her manager and friend in 1995, an event that was chronicled in the eponymous 1997 film. Selena Gomez's parents decided to name her after her because they were big fans of Selena Quintanilla and loved her music, like many people. Gomez has gotten to visit her grave and her house, and said, "When I started working, I remember I got to meet her family and I just got super emotional cause it's so crazy to see how far everything... I don't know, like where she'd be right now. It's nuts."
13 She absolutely loves pickles
Look, pickles are not for everyone. It's not one of those foods that you can kind of, sort of, maybe like. You either love it or you don't. What even is a pickle exactly? Well, it's a cucumber that's preserved in vinegar or something similar. Singers have a list (called a "rider") of requests they'd like to have ready in their dressing rooms and what is one thing on Selena's rider? Pickles, of course. She loves pickles so much that she eats pickles with her popcorn in the movie theater. She loves pickles so much that she even puts the pickle juice on her popcorn. How much does Selena Gomez love pickles? She loves pickles so much that she even straight-up drinks the pickle juice straight from the jar.
12 She has her own production company
One would think that being a singer is busy enough, right? No? Okay, what about also being an actress on top of that? No biggie. Oh, more? Okay. Outside of being the superstar that Selena is and the many things that she juggles, people aren't likely to be aware that the young woman actually has her own production company. She doesn't just act in films, she also gets them off the ground now. She first got started in 2008 and decided to call it July Moon Productions. Another fun fact from this thread? July Moon Productions produced the very popular Netflix series 13 Reasons Why. Gomez was the executive producer of the show. Now 13 Reasons Why has been picked up for a second season, so we're excited to see Sel's company do more awesome work!
11 Her first kiss was Dylan Sprouse, on-screen and in real life
First kisses could be kind of embarrassing, right? Well for actors, sometimes their first kiss is going to end up being an on-screen one. And that was the case for Selena Gomez. She guest-starred on another Disney show at the time—remember The Suite Life of Zack and Cody? On it, she played a girl name Gwen and she had to kiss Dylan Sprouse in a scene. When asked about the scene, she said, "I had my eyes closed a little too early and I ended up missing like half of his lip. So it ended up being the most awkward kiss in the world. But I was 12 so it was okay and it was good." It didn't seem like a big deal, since acting is their job after all.
10 She has a clothing line
If anyone was going to be an example for how people's dreams can come true, it's Selena Gomez. So it's fitting that her clothing line is called Dream Out Loud. She had always wanted a fashion line and she got to launch it way back in 2010 when she was just 17 years old. The collection was a lot of what she would wear: floral tops, skirts, all those laid back boho-chic vibe pieces. On top of a cool collection, all of it was eco-friendly! Selena said she wanted to make sure that all her items were versatile and could be dressed up or down and also that she also wanted the pieces to be able to mix and match together. It was also important to Selena that the line was affordable to everyone because looking good doesn't have to cost a lot.
9 She was an ambassador for UNICEF
Not only is she an ambassador for UNICEF, but when she started the role at 17, she was the youngest ever to do so. The United Nations Children's Fund's mission is to help and support moms and kids who are in need in developing countries. With Selena's reach and fanbase, her helping spread awareness and resources is a big deal. She's been in campaigns, events and traveled all over to meet and help people. Selena has been an ambassador since 2009 and she's publicly talked about why this is so important to her: "It starts with quality education and leadership opportunities, like those UNICEF is providing. I’m so proud to serve as a UNICEF Ambassador and be part of a greater movement to help the world’s children."
8 She passed on High School Musical 3
Remember when High School Musical was like The Hunger Games? In terms of popularity, not genre of course. The HSM franchise was everywhere! So is it surprising to learn that Selena actually turned down a role in High School Musical 3? Honestly? Not really. She turned it down because as much as she loves and respects Disney, she wanted more serious roles. Can we blame her? Absolutely not. High School Musical 3 came out in 2008, but Selena's show Wizards of Waverly Place had already premiered in 2007 on Disney. She had a really good thing going for herself already, so it makes sense. Not to say that we wouldn't have loved to see her in HSM3, but we think she made the right decision.
7 She has 6 rescue dogs
We too are suckers for animals, Selena. But maybe not as much as you. Sel has a total of 6 rescued dogs! She's making all of us animal lovers look bad. All her dogs are from shelters and all special in their own way. Their names are: Chazz (a mysterious “Puerto Rican breed"), Chip (Corgi mix), Fina (Rhodesian Ridgeback mix), Willie (Labrador retriever mix), Wallace (boxer-shepherd mix) and Baylor (husky mix). This was all rooted from Selena's own upbringing: "In Texas, where we’re from, there are a lot of dogs that need homes." This shows how big of a heart she really has. It's important to give back when you can and Selena does her part and then some. This girl is just too sweet.
6 Her favorite sport is basketball
Didn't think Selena Gomez was into sports, huh? Think again. Selena is actually a huge basketball fan, specifically a fan of the San Antonio Spurs because, well, she is from Texas after all. After all, a girl has got to remember her roots. She's been seen court-side plenty of times, often repping her team's gear no matter where she is, enjoying the night with friends. Even at a Lakers vs. Spurs game, she was seen repping in her Spurs jersey. Selena has talked about how her dad used to bring her to Spurs games, so it makes it that much more special and meaningful to her. It's refreshing to see that she enjoys things that brings her back to her childhood. We wonder if she ever played ball herself?
5 Her mom gave birth to her when she was just 16
Selena was born in Grand Prairie, Texas in 1992 to Amanda Cornett and Ricardo Gomez. Selena's mom was just 16 when she gave birth to her. After her parents divorced when she was 5 years old, she lived with her mom for the most part. It's always been very important to Selena that she can now help return the love and care-taking to her mom. She remembers the challenges and difficulties they went through, like how her mom didn't have enough money for gas so they had to find quarters in the car. At one point, her mom had to juggle three jobs just trying to support the two of them. What a long way Selena has come. Everyone has their difficulties to overcome, even someone like Selena Gomez.
4 Her mom and stepdad used to manage her
Selena's mom remarried to a man named Brian Teefey. Brian and Amanda actually managed Selena until she was 23 years old. It might sound harsh at first that Selena had to let her mom and step-dad go as her manager, but it makes sense. This was also around the same time Selena moved out and got her own place. It probably was a pretty awkward situation, but a conversation that needed to happen. Her mom now is one of her partners at her production company, July Moon. We're sure their relationship is better than ever now, but Sel's mom later gave birth to a baby girl so it was bound to happen for Selena to find new management so her parents could spend time, well, being parents.
3 She has two little half sisters
Baby sisters! How cute are they? The press caught on to one of her baby sisters' arrival. Sel's mom gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Gracie in 2013 (seen in the left photo). But little did people know, Selena's birth dad also welcomed a baby girl named Victoria (photographed in the right photo) with his wife Sara in 2014. Selena pretty much grew up as an only child since the age gap is so wide between her and her two sisters. But it's nice to know that Selena is in a position where she can now help her parents out if they need an extra set of hands. We can't wait to see how much her sisters will look like her when they're older!
2 She dated Taylor Lautner
Teenagers date. Adults date. Everyone dates. Even celebrities. Right? They're just like us! But the thing is, it's just a little bit harder for celebs. Everything is public. Everything is very public. It could be two celebs' first date, but the next day, they could be "dating for months now and are very much in love." Weird, right? Selena's relationship with Justin Bieber was probably as big as, dare we say, Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears? Well, it's close at least. But before the Biebs and before her current beau, The Weeknd, Selena dated other hunks as well. Like Nick Jonas. Or remember Taylor Lautner? Yes, she dated that werewolf hottie in 2009. Not going to lie, we were kind of rooting for this one to stick.
1 She has at least 8 tattoos
Tattoos aren't for everyone. But they are for Selena Gomez. She posted the Instagram pic above last year, saying that she has seven tattoos (and counting). Are we the only ones who are actually surprised that she has this many tattoos? Not that seven is too many, but she does a great job hiding them. Recently she got her eighth tattoo: It was a matching tattoo with two cast members from 13 Reasons Why. The three of them got matching semicolons. Semicolon tattoos represent an alternative to suicidal thoughts and bring awareness to mental health challenges. The symbol suggests that the wearer chooses to keep going, that this is not the end but a new beginning. We love that she has so many things to remind her of what's important to her.