40 People Whose Self-Described Glow Ups Are Nothing Short of Incredible | 22 Words

Each of these people experienced a life-changing transformation, otherwise known as a "glow up." Number 17 on this list is legitimately mind-blowing.

Today we're going to take a look at some before-and-after photos of people who underwent a massive glow up.

All of these photos were submitted by the people in the photos themselves, so join us in celebrating these incredible (sometimes shocking) glow ups. Y'all are some beautiful swans.

These pictures were taken four years apart.

She grew her hair out, got braces, and, in her own words, "bit by bit I started to treat myself a 'lil nicer." Way to go, girl! You self-cared your way there! If you thought that was transformative, wait until you see what comes next...

Before: 4th Grade. After: Age 22

"The photographer even made me push my glasses up because I liked to wear them on the tip of my nose!" Oof. That photographer should've been fired.

From age 17 to age 22.

We all remember what it's like to be 17, right? Now, she says "My hair doesn't look like a bad wig anymore." So true! Her hair is incredible — so is that lip color! But you haven't seen the wildest transformations yet. Peep this next girl...

From age 11 to age 21.

What a difference 10 years makes! "My dad used to call me Ugly Betty. I took it as a compliment."

Yep. Same person.

The picture on the left is from age 25, while the picture on the right is at age 40. "Life begins at 40!" this woman writes. And I think you'll see that a few other people on this list agree. Hot diggity dog! The next woman looks like she went through a time warp machine...

Left: Age 11. Right: Age 20.

"I owe a lot to contacts, braces, filling in my eyebrows, and my hairline somehow growing forward." Ah, yes. Can't forget the eyebrows!

Left: Age 16. Right: Age 28.

Yep. This is definitely a glow up. We hope he still enjoys listening to the Ramones, though! This next transformation is seriously incredible...

From 17 to 24.

"[I] went through horrible cystic acne, lost 50 pounds, got braces, and dropped an emotionally abusive boyfriend." And it looks like she found a partner who appreciates her for exactly who she is. Wins all around!

From age 14 to 19.

Even his hair grew up. He looks like Colton Haynes now! Lookin' good, man! This next picture might make you do a double-take...

From age 12 to 20.

Look at that hair! It's amazing what growing out your hair (and aging 8 years) can do.


"I lost 110 pounds in 18 months after a rugby injury started rowing for my university, and got my MSc in mathematics." Obviously a glow up for sure – 18 months is insane. But not everyone's transformation can be that fast...

"It's been an awkward decade for me."

Um...has it? Looks like it's been a very good decade, actually.

From 18 to 23.

"Who knew a jawline would be hidden under all of that?" Lovin' the confidence of the photo on the right! This next picture shows the effect of transformation in multiple photos.

One woman through the years.

"Thank god for weight loss, puberty, and braces." Ah yes, the trifecta of "ugly duckling" transformations.

Left: Age 16. Right: Age 22.

"Got a haircut, got braces, and a new wardrobe!" Eyeliner game is on lock here. You won't believe how different the next ones looks...

"Still need the big glasses!"

These photos were taken 20 years apart. And oh, what a 20 years they were!

12 years old vs. 22 years old.

I think I can speak for all of us when I say: This next one proves that puberty can do wonders!

From 12 to 23.

"Puberty and private dentistry. And let's not forget fake tan and makeup get a lot of credit here!"

Still smilin'!

The best part of these pictures isn't necessarily the phenomenal glow up; it's the fact that she smiled the whole way through, even on tougher days. Now, let's see another fabulous transformation!

Age 16 to 21.

A little less hair dye, slightly fewer hair accessories, and a few less pounds. Also, way to work your angles!

From age 14 to 19.

"Lost some weight and gained some confidence along the way." If there's one thing we've learned from these glow ups, it's that confidence is key. The next one will give you major hair jealousy!

This transformation took place over only a couple years!

He was 19 years old on the left and 21 on the right. Talk about #HairGoals.

A double whammy.

"[Here's] what 10 years of makeup, self-esteem, and effort can do to twins." Forget double-takes; these pictures induce quadruple takes, and so do the ones that follow...

Age 13 vs. Age 21.

"Lost the glasses and stupid fringe." Those eyebrows are a force to be reckoned with. This next set of images once again shows the effect 10 years can have.

Ages 13 and 23.

Lost the glasses, grew out the hair. And lost the braces, too! This next one is such a good glow-up, I'm actually shook.

From 17 to 21.

This guy could legit be a student at Hogwarts, right? How do you even get your hair to do that?!

Ages 15 to 23.

Pretty much everyone changes between the ages of 15 and 23, but not all of us are as fortunate to have such a drastic change. Still, her smile is beautiful in both pics! But wait until you see what's next.

From 15 to 24.

"I'd like to think the past 9 years have been kind to me." Yeah. You could say that.

Ages 17 and 22.

"I don't even look like the same person anymore." Nope! Lovin' the beard! Want more impressive glow ups? Read on!

From 17 to 23.

"No one calls me Bieber anymore." To be fair, both pictures are gorgeous, but it's nice to see a smile in the "after."

12 to 22.

"Middle school was rough." Don't worry. Middle school was rough on all of us. Especially in these next few examples...

From 16 to 24.

Wow! Once again, eyebrows are hella on fleek.

From age 9 to 21.

"When only your ears look the same!" Yep! We'd recognize those ears anywhere. Congrats on the glow up! This next transformation started with someone who apparently really loved his school uniform.


"Lost the weight but damn I miss that hair." We don't blame you. That hair was rad.

A transformation throughout the years.

This set of photos should give hope to everyone who rocked the tie-dyed shirt and thin-framed glasses as a kid. There's hope! See what happened when this next duckling lost her braces...

From 15 to 22.

"[I] traded in the braces and acne in exchange for a healthy dose of self-confidence and the ability to smile." You traded up!

From age 12 to 26.

"I still feel a lot like the kid on the left." Hey, you still are the kid on the left! Just with great hair and some killer tattoos. Keep reading for more glow-ups!

Ages 15 and 21.

"My former bullies have asked me out not even realizing we went to the same school for four years!" Joke's on them.

From age 16 to 23.

"I was a t-shirt, baggy jeans, and scowl face kind of girl." And look at you now! Share this with someone who experienced a major glow up!