1 of 11 Kevin Mazur - Getty Images
After she was snubbed for a VMA nomination for Best Music Video of the Year (ahem, has MTV seen the video for "Anaconda"?!), she tweeted her frustration, writing, "If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year." Pop star Taylor Swift, misconstrued her tweets and took offense, but Nicki was bringing to light a larger discussion around cultural appropriation in music. She wasn't going to let her message get lost, and we are proud of her for speaking up.
2 of 11 beyonce.com
Believe us when we say that you will watch this video on repeat. We were already obsessed with the song, but the music video is e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. The music video is both playful and sexy and features moments like the two superstars feeding each other burgers (seriously). The video might even make you drop $10 for a Tidal membership. Truth.
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Google "Nicki Minaj 2011," and you'll be greeted with pics of a pink (or blue or yellow)-haired singer sporting outrageous outfits. Don't get us wrong—we loved Nicki's unique style then—but we're even more crazy about her toned-down look. The rapper's sleek new style perfectly balances out her less-than-sweet lyrics.
4 of 11 Kevin Winter/MTV1415/Getty Images for MTV
Since Nicki burst onto the scene in 2010, she has attracted her fair share of criticism. Some called her too bubblegum while others thought that she was abandoning her hip-hop roots with pop songs like "Starships." But alas, Nicki proved the haters wrong. She found her footing and is now spittin' some of the hottest lyrics in the game. We should've known when we heard her verse on Kanye's "Monster."
5 of 11 Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
When Jay Z announced the launch of his new music streaming service, Tidal, back in March, we were all a little skeptical, but Nicki (and a throng of other singers) had a feeling that the service would take off. And with the release of "Feeling Myself," we have a feeling that the service is about to take off. If the success of the video is any indication, Nicki is sure to play a pivotal role in the future of Tidal. She saw an opportunity and ran with it.
6 of 11 Prince Williams/WireImage
Surprise! Last month, the singer Instagrammed a pic of a larger-than-life heart-shaped ring on—ahem—that finger. We can only guess that her boo thang, Meek Mill, popped the question. Neither Nicki nor Meek has confirmed (or denied) the possible engagement, but we don't care—we just love them as a couple.
7 of 11 Jason Merritt/Getty Images
Last December, Nicki's "Only" climbed its way to the top of the Billboard charts, landing her her fourth No. 1 single—more than any other female rapper in the chart's 56-year history. Additionally, she has scored American Music Awards, BET Awards, Billboard Awards, and has landed a score of Grammy nominations. Talk about a boss chick.
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Perfume? Check. Moscato? Check. Clothing Line? Check, check. Nicki Minaj has extended her brand to include a trio of perfumes, a co-ownership of MYX Fusions moscato and a clothing line with K Mart. Talk about making your mark.
9 of 11 Steve Granitz
What can't she do?! Earlier this month, we learned that Nicki scored a role in Barbershop 3 as Draya, a hair stylist working alongside Regina Hall's character. This isn't the first time that Nicki will grace the big screen: In 2014, she starred in The Other Woman, and two years before that, she lent her voice to a mammoth in Ice Age: Continental Drift.
10 of 11 Francesco Carrozzini
Nicki is the face of Roberto Cavalli's Spring/Summer 2015 campaign. We love that she was able to help the iconic label celebrate curves and diversity in one shot. Go Nicki!
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We don't know how she did it (actually, we do—by being flawless), but Nicki scored the only guest appearance during Beyonce and Jay Z's "On the Run" world tour. During the final stop of the tour in Paris, Nicki popped up to perform the "Flawless" remix with Bey. We're going to go out on a limb and guess that it's not just anyone who is invited to crash a Bey and Jay show. Plus, she has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the industry, including Kanye West, labelmates Lil' Drake and Wayne, Trey Songz, Usher and more.
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