People magazine has finally announced their “2020 People of the Year” and it’s official — one of the winners is Selena Gomez. Along with our favorite ex-Disney bae, the other winners include Dr. Anthony Fauci, Regina King, and George Clooney.
These people have impacted the world in positive and memorable ways during a challenging year when we’ve truly needed it most. As King used her voice to encourage voters and support minority communities during the pandemic, Fauci made scientific leaps and bounds in science. Meanwhile, Clooney donated half a million dollars to the Equal Justice initiative after George Floyd’s death, and a million to COVID.
Selena Gomez is the youngest member on this list, but that doesn’t make her any less impressive. She’s starting important conversations that young people need to have, and we’re grateful for that. The singer’s chart-topper of an album Rare and her cooking show on Max (Selena + Chef) both were explosive creations that helped uplift us in the past year.
In fact, the purpose of Rare was to make her fans and others feel less lonely as they went through emotional life experiences — either relating to personal ordeals, COVID-19, or both. As Gomez puts it herself, “I want them to make it their own, and of course all I would want is for people to relate to it.”
But it was her spirit of inclusion via her beauty brand Rare Beauty that made her one of the notable contenders for this list. Rare Beauty set an ambitious goal of raising $100 million over the course of 10 years to help make mental health initiatives more accessible. This was motivated by her own struggle with bipolar disorder.
Selena isn’t just a singer — she’s an entrepreneur, activist, and actress. Along with bringing us joy through her album, she brings essential conversations with world leaders and people of influence.
In February 2020, she announced that she would launch a new makeup brand, which we know today as Rare Beauty. This line follows in the steps of Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty, with a whopping 48 shades of concealer and foundation. Another goal of this brand is to initiate conversations about mental health, self-acceptance, and inclusion.
Another example of inclusion? When she posted a swimsuit pic that showed off her kidney transplant scar with joy. She captioned it saying that she used to try to hide it in photographs and would cover it up, but now, is feeling comfortable and proud, remembering that “all bodies are beautiful.”
When she introduced Rare Beauty, she also told us about the Rare Impact Fund, which is raising the $100 million over a decade that we previously mentioned. 1% of every Rare Beauty sales will be donated to this foundation to bring more resources and help for those with mental health struggles. It’s worth noting that Gomez has also raised additional funds from strategic partnerships with foundations, nonprofits, and companies.
Gomez also encouraged people to fill out the 2020 Census. She partnered with other celebs to make an appearance on ATTN: and Census Counts. This announcement helped motivate people to make a difference in deciding how more than $650 billion dollars will be locally distributed, including schooling and healthcare.
She’s also been a voice for animal activism this year. A celebrity like her could choose to buy any high-pedigree dog from a breeder. But instead, Selena decided to foster a puppy named Daisy during the pandemic. Plenty of people are adopting animal companions during quarantine, and a foster is the perfect way to spread the love.
Gomez was also involved in Black Lives Matter with an inspiring social media move on the week of Juneteenth. She turned over her Instagram to various Black leaders, lending them her massive platform to spotlight their activism and educate her fans. Prominent community leaders on the IG takeover included Alicia Garza, a co-creator of Black Lives Matter, along with, famous civil rights activist Kimberle Crenshaw and lots of others who are making a difference.
Along with sharing plenty of snapshots of herself voting early, Selena had a profound conversation with politician Stacey Abrams for the “Latinas Make A Difference Tour”. In addition, the actress and activist had a talk with Vice President Elect Kamala Harris to talk about voting and mental health.
Selena + Max was a cooking show that showed viewers how to improve their cooking skills during quarantine. Showing the actress in self-isolation, this series featured different master chefs who would remotely teach her and her fans a dish. In every episode, a new food-related charity is highlighted.
Her involvement in film isn’t limited to making appearances as a pretty face. She was one of the executive producers (along with Aaron Saidman and Eli Holzman) on Netflix docuseries Living Undocumented, which shares the emotional and tragic stories of undocumented immigrants in the United States. As a child of immigrants, this issue hits close to home for Selena.