Stars Who Are Way Younger Than You Thought

It's always fun to learn about celebrities' personal lives—their family, where they grew up, and their pre-Hollywood names (Neta-Lee Hershlag, anyone?). But nothing's more surprising than discovering that your favorite A-lister is much younger than you think they are. We bet that you've been tricked by a few stars who seem wise beyond their years.

Margot Robbie

Margot Robbie emerged on the Hollywood scene with her role in The Wolf of Wall Street alongside cinema regulars Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill. The Australian-born actress played Naomi, DiCaprio's potty-mouthed lover and mother to his child. With revealing outfits and risqué scenes, audiences everywhere assumed Robbie to be older than her then-23 years. In fact, after the movie's release, Jezebel published an article that attempted to prove that Robbie was lying about her age. However, sites like Huffington Post were quick to debunk these claims.

On the topic, Robbie told Elle in a 2015 interview, "People seem outraged that I'm 24. People think I'm a decade older." Today, the blonde beauty, who was born in 1990, is 26 years old, and she has some juicy roles on the horizon, including Gotham City Sirens, where she'll once again don pigtails as Harley Quinn. She's also set to star as Tonya Harding in the upcoming film I, Tonya, which is set to release in 2018.

Kate Upton

Most people see model and sometimes-actress Kate Upton as a huge sex symbol. After her appearance in the 2011 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, she's gained a following of adoring fans that admire her curvy figure and flowing blonde locks. However, many would be surprised to learn that the gorgeous celeb was only 18 years old at the time of her first Sports Illustrated photo shoot. Yes, that's right. Upton was born in 1992.

Today, Upton is 24 years old and has a lot going for her. For one, she's engaged. She debuted her stunning engagement ring on the red carpet at the 2016 Met Gala. Addressing her relationship with Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander (a man nearly 10 years her senior), she shared, "I'm really excited, he asked me right before season started so we've been keeping it on the down low for quite a while." Upton's also has roles in the upcoming films Wild Man and The Layover. An established modeling career, a fiancé, and multiple acting gigs? No wonder fans thought she was older!

Sam Smith

After achieving some success in the U.K. for his music, Sam Smith landed on the U.S. radar in 2014 with the release of his single "Stay with Me." His beautiful vocal delivery of the lyrics had people in awe of the British singer's talents. With his powerful, angelic voice—not to mention his suave style—Smith carried himself like he may have been in his late twenties or early thirties. But that was not the case. The songbird was just 22 years old when his hit song was released.

Now, at 24 years old, Smith still seems young, even after winning four Grammys at the 2015 Grammy Awards. With friends like Katy Perry and Taylor Swift (despite the ladies' infamous feud), he's often the baby of the group, in spite of his mature style and 6'2" frame. These days, Smith's been staying out of the spotlight, though he recently wrote a song for Matt Terry, the winner of the 13th season of the UK's X-Factor. He has a new album coming out soon, though its release isn't his doing. The album, titled Sam Smith Diva Boy, was his original 2008 debut record, and is owned by Flipbook Music. So, if you want to hear an even younger Smith, you may just get your wish.

Dakota Fanning

It certainly feels like Dakota Fanning has been gracing our screens forever. But that just hasn't been the case. The child star began her film-acting career with a role in 2001's I Am Sam opposite mega-actor Sean Penn, earning her a Screen Actors Guild Award at just 8 years old. Since then, she's snagged over 15 roles in movies like War of the Worlds and Hounddog before she even celebrated her 18th birthday. Surely, it would seem that, with such an impressive resume, Fanning must be in her mid to late twenties. However, the talented actress is only 22 years old.

Recently, the young actress worked the pages of Vanity Fair's 2017 Hollywood Issue alongside her 18-year-old sister Elle Fanning and fellow actresses Lupita Nyong'o, Emma Stone, and more. She'll also be returning to the small screen in TNT's latest thriller, The Alienist, as well as starring in the much-anticipated film, Ocean's Eight.


Lorde, born as Ella Yelich-O'Connor, has the kind of musical talent that leaves listeners stunned—especially when they find out that the New Zealand native is only 20 years old! Her debut single "Royals" had everyone singing along to their car radios when it was released as a single back in 2013, and earned her two Grammy awards, for Best Pop Solo Performance and Song of the Year, respectively. But fans couldn't believe that, at the time, the indietronic dream was only 16 years old. According to Huffington Post, many internet sleuths imagined a conspiracy around the young singer, theorizing that she was lying about her age. The Hairpin even paid $17.02 for a copy of the singer's New Zealand birth certificate.

How does Lorde herself deal with rumors of her age? She laughs them off. In an interview with Vanity Fair, she playfully introduced herself, "Hi, I'm Ella, and I'm actually 45." Way to keep it light, Lorde!

Saoirse Ronan

The Bronx-born actress of Irish descent grabbed everyone's attention in the 2007 film Atonement, sharing scenes with stars Keira Knightley and James McAvoy. While most child actors don't have the good fortune to star in a major movie at just 12 years old, it's obvious to all who've seen the film that the girl's has serious acting chops. Since gaining exposure in Atonement, Ronan has snagged major roles in works like The Lovely Bones, Hanna, and Brooklyn, which have highlighted her acting abilities and helped her achieve recognition by U.S. audiences—though, many viewers still probably don't know how to correctly say her name (It's pronounced SUR-SHA).

Perhaps Ronan's near-constant roles in dramatic films make the actress appear so much wiser than her years. If we'd seen her in chick-flicks or coming-of-age movies, we'd more easily associate her with the younger crowd and celebrity peers like Justin Bieber. However, the 22-year-old starlet, who was photographed with older, established actresses in Vanity Fair's 2016 Hollywood Issue, appears to be in her late-twenties, despite her beautiful, youthful appearance. Maybe she just has an old soul.

Meghan Trainor

Maybe it was the pastel-rich colors and full-coverage cardigans of Meghan Trainor's past, but the "All About That Bass" singer seemed way older than we'd previously thought. While the overt confidence displayed in her songs suggests a more mature age, Meghan Trainor is actually only 23 years old. In an interview at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards, Trainor, who was nominated for Song of the Year and Record of the Year, stated, "It's crazy. It feels like all my dreams have come true at 21."

Despite some backlash regarding her apparent criticism of "skinny b******" in "All About That Bass," Trainor's focused on loving the skin she's in. At 23 years old, she has more confidence in her appearance and her talent than most women her age. But it's clear she wasn't always pleased with her looks. She told Seventeen, "For a good six years, I wore sweatpants and sweatshirts, even on vacation in 90-degree weather—I was hiding." We're glad those days of constant insecurity are behind her.

Jennifer Lawrence

Actress Jennifer Lawrence has been a Hollywood favorite since her breakthrough performance in the Oscar-nominated indie film Winter's Bone. However, it wasn't until 2012 that Lawrence received international recognition for her roles in The Hunger Games and Silver Linings Playbook. Although the character of Katniss Everdeen is a teenager, Silver Linings Playbook's Tiffany Maxwell is a full-grown, though unstable, adult. As Entertainment Weekly pointed out, Maxwell is supposed to be "much older," an aspect of the book that author Matthew Quick acknowledged was cleverly written around. At the time of casting, Lawrence was just 21 years old—a fresh faced, though by no means inexperienced, addition to the big screen.

Due to her frequent portrayal of older characters, it's easy to mistake Lawrence for an older woman. However, the Kentucky-born actress is only 26 years old. While it may make us scratch our heads in disbelief, at least that means there are many more years ahead of the beloved talent.


We'd wager that most people wouldn't guess that Adele is only one year older than national treasure/shady celeb Taylor Swift. But it's the truth. In fact, as an article on Bustle points out, Adele's younger than many of our favorite pop stars, including Katy Perry, Kesha, and Ellie Goulding. The soulful British singer is 28 years old and mother to a 4-year-old son named Angelo.

Adele's mature persona is likely due not only to her status as a mother but also to her flexible vocal range. She also tends to dress far more conservatively than many of her peers, opting to wear floor-length gowns (like this beautiful Jenny Packham number) rather than short-shorts and cupcake bras. However, observant fans may have picked up on her age, as each of her albums is named after the age she was during production. In a note on her Twitter page, Adele addressed her age as it related to her latest album, 25. She described turning a quarter of a century old as "teetering on the edge of being an older adolescent and fully-fledged adult." But Adele shouldn't worry about the changes that come with age—she's doing just fine.