17 Disney Channel It Girls — From Miley Cyrus To Bella Thorne

LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 27: Singer Hilary Duff and singer Miley Cyrus arrive at the City of Hope Spirit of Life Award dinner Honoring Disney Music Group Chairman Bob Cavallo held on September 27, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/ Getty Images)
Source: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Forget child star, there's really nothing bigger than being a former Disney star. When it comes to Disney Channel, it seems like there is a formula for how they sell their product. It's called the "it" girl. It starts small but then it multiplies into something way bigger. A cameo in a hit show turns into a lead role, and before you know it they're selling out arenas world wide with their new platinum album. 

Over the years, there have been numerous different Disney It girls, some more successful than others, but each have left their own legacy. Check out this comprehensive timeline of Disney Channel's top girls over the years. 

Christy Carlson Romano

Christy was one of the first Disney stars. While she didn’t amass to sold out arenas and big movies, her role in Even Stevens and her small singing career are something that shouldn’t go overlooked. 

Hilary Duff

When it comes to Disney “it” girls, in my opinion, Hilary Duff is the main one. Her role in Lizzie McGuire really paved the way for all other Disney actresses after her and she managed to have a super successful singing and acting career when she left Disney.


Raven was one of the first Disney Channel stars to really make it big in both acting and singing. Not only did she sing the theme song for her hit show, That’s So Raven, she also starred in the sensational DCOM movies The Cheetah Girls

Aly & AJ

Aly was known for her role in the Disney Channel show Phil of the Future and from there, her and her sister became the legendary Disney pop duo Aly & AJ. The two are still making music today now with the band name 78Violet. 

Ashley Tisdale

She was already known for playing Maddie The Suite Life of Zack & Cody but when she got the role of Sharpay in High School Musical she quickly went from candy girl to bonafide Disney “it” girl. 

Vanessa Hudgens

After High School Musical Disney Channel really sold her singing career. She signed with Hollywood Records and performed alongside the rest of the cast at the High School Musical live concert tour. 

Miley Cyrus

She really started the new generation of Disney Channel “it” girls. Singing as both Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus gave her tremendous success in movies, albums and sold out concerts. 

Selena Gomez

Her show Wizards of Waverly Place was something Disney Channel had never really done before. Not only was the Russo family magically, they were also Disney Channel’s first Latino family. From the show, Selena started her singing career, appearing on the soundtrack and recording the show’s theme song. 

Demi Lovato

Demi has come a long way since her stint with Disney Channel. She started off in the short As the Bell Rings and that quickly escalated into a two hit DCOMs (Camp Rock) and a hit show (Sonny With a Chance). Now she has a majorly successful singing career with Hollywood Records. 

Bridgit Mendler

With all the buzz of other Disney Channel hit shows, Bridgit may be one of the most underrated “it” girls. Not only was her show Good Luck Charlie adorable, but she’s got an awesome voice! 

Bella Thorne

She actually got her start on Disney in the show Wizards of Waverly Place as Max’s girlfriend, but she quickly got her own show Shake It Up. You can see her now in the new movie, The DUFF


She was a talented dancer way before her role in Shake It Up dancing with the dance group Future Shock Oakland when she was younger. She even competed on Dancing With the Stars becoming the show’s youngest contestant at age 16. 

China Anne McClain

Played a musically gifted student in the show, A.N.T. Farm wasn’t so far stretched. Coming from parents who are music producers and songwriters, China and her sisters created their own singing group, McClain. 

Debby Ryan

She made her start on the spin-off series The Suite Life on Deck alongside Dylan and Cole Sprouse, but eventually she got her own show, Jessie.

Laura Marano

She’s known for her role in the Disney Channel show Austin & Ally, but acting is in here genes. You might recognize her sister, Vanessa Marano, from the ABC Family show, Switched at Birth

Dove Cameron

Just call her the new Hannah Montana. In her show, Liv and Maddie, she plays twins, one who is a super famous singer/actress and another who is a high school regular girl. She also plays Kristin Chenoweth’s daughter in the new DCOM, Descendants

Sabrina Carpenter

She’s basically the girl Shawn Hunter in the much anticipated spin-off series, Girl Meets World. But she’s also got a killer voice and is signed with Hollywood Records.