Mariah Carey Is The 'Queen of Christmas' — And The Queen Of A $320M Empire
Photo Credit: Kevin Winter

Mariah Carey Is The 'Queen of Christmas' — And The Queen Of A $320M Empire

Bernadette Giacomazzo

Bernadette Giacomazzo.
Mar 25, 2022.

Mariah Carey: Diva, pop star, legend.

What can possibly be said about this multi-talented and multi-hyphenate that hasn’t been said?

She does everything with her own, personal dramatic flair — and she manages to make it all look good in the process.

But more than just look good, Mariah Carey does good, as well. According to Essence Magazine, she ties none other than Elvis Presley for the artist who spent the most weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. She also is the artist with the most No. 1 debuts in history, and she trails only The Beatles for the most Billboard-charting singles in history. Her music is adored by everyone from fans to presidents, including Barack Obama, and she’s branched out into acting, as well.

Not bad for a woman who started out as a background singer for Brenda K. Starr!

With a five-octave range and an incomparable pop style, Mariah Carey isn’t just known for her music. She’s parlayed her success across a variety of industries, which has helped her amass a $320 million net worth, per Celebrity Net Worth. 

Let’s take a look at the wide variety of the diva’s business ventures.

Editorial note: The net worth listed in this piece is a speculative estimate drawn from a variety of online sources.

Musical Career

Photo Credit: Jeff Kravitz

Mariah Carey is, of course, best known for her musical career. In December 2021, the RIAA reported that her infamous — and ubiquitous — holiday song “All I Want for Christmas” made history when it became the first holiday song to take home the industry’s Diamond Award, which is given in recognition of 10 million or more streaming units and sales in the United States.

And as the industry outlet reported, that’s far from the only accomplishment the diva has achieved. She’s the first artist to have a Hot 100 # 1 in four separate decades: the 1990s, the 2000s, the 2010s, and the 2020s. She has sold more than 200 million albums worldwide, is the second-best-selling female artist of all time (behind Madonna, per the Guinness Book of World Records), and has the most number-one singles of all time (also per the Guinness Book of World Records).

Acting Career

Courtesy of Aamzon

According to her IMDb page, Mariah Carey has made quite the splash as an actress, as well. While her most critically acclaimed role was, arguably, in “Precious,” she’s also starred in “The Bachelor” with Chris O’Donnell and has loaned her voice to “The Lego Batman Movie,” amongst other roles.

Las Vegas Residency

Photo Credit: John Shearer

In 2015, Billboard reported that Mariah Carey launched her first Las Vegas residency at Caesar’s Palace. She returned to Caesar’s in 2018, and the residency continued until the global COVID-19 pandemic shut down concerts.

Record Label

Photo Credit: Fox

In 2017, Forbes reported that Mariah Carey launched her own record label, which she called Butterfly MC Records. The label has a joint partnership deal with Epic Records.

'American Idol'

Photo Credit: Fox

According to Spin Magazine, Mariah Carey made $18 million to be a judge for one season of “American Idol.” The deal, according to the outlet, made her the show’s second-best paid judge, behind Simon Cowell.

Brand Endorsements


Courtesy of Virtual Dining Concepts

As AfroTech previously reported, Mariah Carey recently partnered with Virtual Dining Concepts to release her own line of Christmas cookies called Mariah’s Cookies.

But that was far from the first time the R&B diva endorsed various brands. Amazingly, according to Billboard, Mariah Carey didn’t get involved in commercials and/or endorsements until 2006 — and she reportedly refused offers outright until then. But since that time, she’s accepted everything from a 9 million GBP, approximately $11.8 million USD, deal with Walker’s Crisps, a British potato chip company, according to The Mirror, to deals with Pepsi and Motorola per E! News.

Charitable Work

Photo Credit: Stephen Lovekin

Like many boss diva queens, Mariah Carey frequently gets involved with charitable work. Her charitable work goes all the way back to the beginning of her career in 1994, when she became an ambassador for the Fresh Air Fund, according to the Sun Journal.

What’s more, according to Billboard, she’s also donated the royalties from some of her hit songs — like “One Sweet Day” and “Hero” — to charitable organizations, including her own Camp Mariah.


Photo Credit: Emmanuel Dunand

Throughout the course of her career, Mariah Carey has released a variety of branded perfumes and fragrances.

According to Fragrantica, Carey released thirteen branded fragrances between 2007 and 2013. In fact, Carey’s fragrances are still sold through various online retailers, like Walmart and Amazon.

HSN Line

Courtesy of HSN

In 2010, WWD reported that Mariah Carey released what was then called a “lifestyle line” for HSN (formerly the Home Shopping Network). The line included shoes, handbags, and jewelry.

Real Estate

Courtesy of Mariah Carey

Throughout her career, Mariah Carey has owned a variety of homes across two coasts — and even an impressive mansion in the Caribbean.

In 2016, Architectural Digest revealed that she sold her home in Beverly Hills, California, for $9 million. The sale came after her divorce from Nick Cannon. Currently, she doesn’t own a home on the West Coast, preferring instead to rent a palatial mansion in the Beverly Hills district for a reported $35,000 per month, according to the outlet.

But Mariah Carey does own quite the glamourous triplex in Manhattan’s ritzy Tribeca district. Originally purchased by the singer in 1999 for a princely sum of $9 million, Closer Weekly reports that the four-bedroom, four-bath home in the historic Franklin Tower boasts nearly 6,000 sq. ft., which is palatial by New York City standards.

In 2008, Mariah Carey purchased a home on Windmere Island in the Bahamas. After she and Nick Cannon divorced, Variety reported that Carey put the home on the market for $5.5 million. Believe it or not, as of this writing, it still has not sold.

But what has sold is the couple’s Bel Air mansion, which was put up for sale in 2015. Carey and Cannon purchased the property in 2009 for $6.975 million, and it sold for $9 million, according to Variety.