Selena Gomez  has created such a huge name for herself as a singer, big-screen actress, and style star  that it's easy to forget that she got her start on the Disney Channel, playing the lead role of Alex Russo on Wizards of Waverly Place from 2008 to 2012. Like any child star trying to navigate their way through adulthood in the public eye, Selena's life hasn't been without pitfalls; she spent time in a treatment center  for two weeks back in January 2014, a stay that her rep said was "not for substance abuse," and has been at the center of rumors concerning her famous friendships with Taylor Swift , Kendall Jenner, and Demi Lovato, as well as her on-again, off-again romance with Justin Bieber  (and let's not even get started on his recent career setbacks ).
While Selena's journey has included its fair share of ups and downs, it's worth noting that the actress, singer, and philanthropist seems to be experiencing a lot of the same things that any woman in her early 20s goes through; friends coming and going, relationships falling apart (and rekindling), exploring her sexuality, doing a little partying, and even getting tattoos . We're taking a look back at Selena's evolution from cute Disney kid to smokin' hot Hollywood star. Scroll through to see the memorable moments.
Source: Getty / Venturelli 
A fresh-faced Selena attended the LA premiere of Shrek the Third.
She walked the red carpet at the Anaheim, CA, premiere of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End.
Selena posed with Minnie Mouse at the Disneyland premiere of High School Musical 2 in Anaheim, CA.
A young Selena and Demi Lovato posed together at a Chevy event in LA.
Selena posed with a pair of young fans at an AIDS benefit event in LA.
She struck a pose at the VH1 Rock Honors event in LA.
At the Teen Choice Awards in LA, Selena met up with her pals Demi Lovato and Miley Cyrus .
Selena got glammed up for a night out with Jessica Alba  at the ALMA Awards in LA.
Selena was all smiles during an autograph signing for Wizards of Waverly Place fans in NYC.
Selena stayed close to Taylor Swift  at the LA premiere of Another Cinderella Story.
She hit the catwalk for Runway For Life in LA.
Selena launched the first ever Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF campaign in NYC.
Selena showed off her new bangs at the CNN Heroes event in LA.
Selena posed with a furry friend at the LA premiere of Hotel For Dogs.
She posed with her mom, Mandy Teefey, at an LA charity carnival.
Selena accepted the Teen Choice Award for choice Summer TV star at the ceremony in LA.
Selena and her Wizards of Waverly Place costars celebrated their outstanding children's program win at the Creative Emmy Awards.
Selena turned heads in a black dress at the Hollywood Style Awards in LA.
She linked up with Shakira  at the American Music Awards in LA.
A young Selena and Justin Bieber  hugged while attending New Year's Rockin' Eve in Las Vegas.
Selena teared up while accepting her trophy for favorite TV actress at the Kids' Choice Awards in LA.
Selena and her Ramona and Beezus costar Joey King promoted the film together at a Miami meet-and-greet event.
Selena sat front row with Kim Kardashian  for the Beach Bunny Swimwear fashion show in Miami.
Selena seemed to be breaking out of her shell in a sexy silver dress at the MTV VMAs in LA.
She sang her heart out at the Jingle Ball in NYC.
Selena and Taylor Swift  celebrated their respective People's Choice Award wins — favorite breakout artist and favorite country artist — backstage at the ceremony in LA.
A mature-looking Selena waved to her fans at the LA premiere of Justin Bieber: Never Say Never.
Selena and Justin Bieber  had a very adult-looking date night at the Vanity Fair Oscars afterparty in LA.
She and Justin Bieber  showed major PDA while on vacation together in Maui.
She shared a sweet hug with Cory Monteith  on the Kids' Choice Awards red carpet in LA.
Selena and Justin Bieber  cuddled up in their seats at the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas.
She showed some cleavage during a performance at KIIS FM's Wango Tango show in LA.
Selena blew a kiss to the camera at the MTV Movie Awards in LA.
Selena buddied up with Demi Lovato at the Teen Choice Awards in LA.
Selena showed off a sexier, more mature look at the MTV VMAs in LA.
For the MTV Europe Awards, Selena wore a flirty dress and heels.
She kept the glamour going at the American Music Awards, where she and boyfriend Justin Bieber  showed PDA on the red carpet.
Selena brought her mom, Mandy Teefey, as her lovely date to the Vanity Fair Oscars afterparty in LA.
Selena showed some skin at the Kids' Choice Awards in LA.
Selena hit the beach while filming Spring Breakers in Florida.
She and on-again boyfriend Justin Bieber  were on the Kiss Cam during an LA Lakers game.
Selena launched her first fragrance at Macy's in NYC.
Selena celebrated her 20th birthday on stage at the Teen Choice Awards in LA.
Selena stunned on the red carpet at her first Venice Film Festival, where she premiered Spring Breakers with Vanessa Hudgens , Ashley Benson, Rachel Korine, James Franco , and director Harmony Korine.
Selena was the recipient of a Glamour woman of the year award at the annual ceremony in NYC.
She announced a global partnership with the Adidas  NEO label at a big event in LA.
Selena went short and glitzy for the InStyle Golden Globes afterparty in LA.
Selena slipped into a sexy pantsuit and posed with her Spring Breakers costars Ashley Benson and Vanessa Hudgens  at the film's premiere in Germany.
Selena showed off her figure at the SXSW screening of Spring Breakers in Austin.
She palled around with Katy Perry  and Kristen Stewart  at the Kids' Choice Awards in LA.
Selena caught some flak around the time her single "Come & Get It" was released in 2013; many groups found her wearing of bindis — as well as her Indian-inspired performance at the MTV Movie Awards — offensive.
Despite the backlash over her performance, Selena hit the stage in similar Indian-inspired garb at the Billboard Music Awards.
Taylor Swift  and Selena matched their dresses for the MTV VMAs in NYC.
Selena walked the red carpet with Ethan Hawke  at the LA premiere of their action flick, Getaway.
Selena relaxed in a bikini  with friends during a break from her Stars Dance tour in Miami.
She showed off her silly side with a group of kids at a Salvation Army event in Texas.
To launch her supersexy cover for Flaunt magazine , Selena wore an equally sultry look at a party in her honor in Beverly Hills, CA.
She vamped things up during a performance at Z100's Jingle Ball in NYC.
Selena partied with the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow  and Reese Witherspoon  at the Stand Up to Cancer benefit event in LA.
Selena stepped out solo for Vanity Fair's post-Oscars bash in LA.
Selena took home the Kids' Choice Award for favorite female singer at the annual ceremony in LA.
Selena wore a little black dress for the Alliance For Children's Rights dinner in LA.
Selena was the picture of a glamour girl at the American Ballet Opening Night Gala in NYC.
After going braless in NYC and sporting a bustier look, rumors swirled that Selena had gone under the knife.
Selena showed off her new tattoo  while attending the Ischia Global Film and Music Festival in Italy. It's official, folks: she's all grown up.