10 Things You Never Knew About Christina Aguilera

Happy Birthday, Christina Aguilera

Born on December 18, 1980, the diva has been on the scene since her days on Star Search and The Mickey Mouse Club. The talented vocalist — a star since childhood — has since solidifed herself as one of the greatest singers of all time. 

Here are 10 things you didn't know about birthday girl Christina Aguilera:

MORE: Christina Aguilera's 10 best collaborations!

1. 1

#1: She's a victim of domestic violence. 

Aguilera has spoken publicly about the domestic violence she suffered at the hands of her father, Fausto Xavier Aguilera, a sergeant in the U.S. Army. The diva penned "I'm OK" from 2002's Stripped about her abusive childhood. 

She spoke candidly to us about her relationship with her dad in 2010. "To remember the chaos that [my mother] went through, the abuse, I don't know how she did it," she said. "But it's amazing how much you can trick your mind into surviving when you have to."

At the age of six, her mother, Shelly Loraine, divorced her father and moved to Pittsburgh with her daughters, Christina and Rachel. 

2. 2

#2: She was bullied as a child. 

Christina Aguilera might be a strong, confident woman today, but she grew up tormented because of her talent. She told Dateline"I have definitely experienced forms of bullying, and that's why it's so important for me to write songs like 'Beautiful' and 'Fighter.'

 

3. 3

#3: She took a chance on the Mulan soundtrack.

Christina Aguilera sent a cover version of Whitney Houston's "Run To You" to Walt Disney Pictures in hopes that she would score the theme song "Reflection" from the upcoming animated flick, Mulan. They loved it, and she got the song — despite the fact that she hadn't signed with RCA yet. "Reflection" later earned a Golden Globe nomination for "Best Original Song."

4. 4

#4: She won the Best New Artist Grammy in 2000.

Christina Aguilera walked away with the Grammy for Best New Artist in 2000, despite facing stiff competition from Macy Gray, Kid Rock, Susan Tedeschi, and her infamous rival, Britney Spears. "I am completely in utter and complete shock," she said at the time. "I was not expecting it at all."

5. 5

#5: She's a prolific songwriter.

Aguilera has written many of her greatest hits, including "Hurt", "Candyman", "Ain't No Other Man", "Come On Over Baby", and "Dirrty." She has also written songs for other artists, including Kelly Clarkson. She penned her hit "Miss Independent."

6. 6

#6: She's got some serious ink. 

Christina Aguiler has a few remnants from her "Dirrty" days — her tattoos! She has "Xtina" enscripted on the back of her neck, as well as tattoos on her hip, wrist and lower back. Her fifth tattoo shows off her Latina heritage. She had "Te Amo Siempre" printed onto her left elbow. 

The diva also, at one point, had 11 piercings. She had them all removed, with the exception of one in her right nipple, according to People

7. 7

#7: She can't record without one beauty product.

Aguilera loves a bold lip. In fact, while recording Basics, she refused to record without a swipe of crimson lip color. "For me, the visual is just as important as the music," she said. "I would never record anything without my red lipstick. It was my way of getting into character, sort of like Method singing."

8. 8

#8: She represents her Latin roots through her music.

Christina Aguilera, who is of Ecuadorian descent, has record many songs in Spanish, including "Hoy Tengo Ganas De Ti" with Alejandro Fernandez and "Genio Atrapado" — the Spanish version of "Genie In A Bottle."

In 2006, she released a Spanish-language album, Mi Reflejo. Aguilera won a Latin Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal, two Billboard Latin Music Awards, and a Grammy nomination for the album. 

9. 9

#9: She's inspired countless artists.

Christina Aguilera has served as an inspiration to countless artists, including Lady Gaga, Meghan Trainor, Ashley Tisdale, Kelly Clarkson, and Demi Lovato

"I had a lot of respect for... Christina Aguilera," Lovato told Billboard. "On some songs where she was amazing and wasn't trying to be sexy or anything like that. I just found that I had more respect for artists that didn't talk about that stuff, and those were the ones that were more successful."

10. 10

#10: She has a four octave vocal range. 

Aguilera's incredible vocal range has contributed to her amazing success and legacy. The "Princess of Pop" has sold 50 million albums worldwide, and TIME named her one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2013. At the time, Celine Dion wrote a touching tribute to her fellow diva: "Without a doubt, [Aguilera's] one of the most talented artists the world has ever seen and heard, and I think she's going to continue to amaze us for many, many years to come."