"Do you have to do anything weird to get in?" Even Ariana Grande is curious what it takes to be cherry-picked by the biggest #SquadQueen around. Taylor Swift and her infamous squad have redefined #SquadGoals for good, but something's going on.
"What happened to Taylor Swift's squad?" That was In Style's headline in December 2018 as Tay-Tay seemed to have lost a fair few of her sheep. 2016 and 2017 were the strong years. IG was throwing us this girl's selective circle of friends with full force. Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and Karlie Kloss were core members.
Times are changing, though. The girl who literally comes with a #Reputation either seems to have kicked her core members out or they've voluntarily left.
1989 was the Gigi era. Private jets, cakes, burgers– these girls did everything together. Fast-forward to 2019, and Modern Family's Sarah Hyland seems to have worked her way into Taylor's squad. Then again, with NY Post calling Taylor Swift's squad "a cult," we're starting to wonder what exactly goes on.
Tay-Tay isn't someone whose bad side you want to get on. With Elle listing a whole string of "savage lyrics" on Reputation that outline beef with high-profile faces, it's clear– throw shade at Taylor, and she'll throw it back.
A lot changed in 2018. Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson split. Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin got married (plus, like, a zillion other people). It's time for a Swift update. Here are 9 celebs who are besties with Taylor Swift, plus 11 who steer clear of her.
20 Hailey Baldwin: "I Don't Understand The Taylor Swift Squad At All"
Hailey Baldwin has just bagged herself some serious muscle. When you spent 2017 as a second-class citizen to Kendall Jenner (and 2018 marrying Justin Bieber), you could say that things are looking up. Grazia reported why the new Mrs. Bieber doesn't have the time of day for Tay-Tay:
“I don’t know what having a squad means. I don't understand the Taylor Swift squad at all.”
Adding that she "doesn't know what it proves," Hailey made her status crystal clear. Squads aren't her thing, she doesn't understand the mentality behind them and no, she isn't going to be attending Tay-Tay's parties any time soon.
19 Selena Gomez: Considers Herself An "OG" Member
In 2018, Selena Gomez hopped into James Corden's Carpool Karaoke car (and we followed her). They stopped by McDonald's, they went on a rollercoaster and then Taylor Swift came up, as Hello Giggles reports.
James Corden: “You are very much officially a member of the squad." Selena: “I’d like to consider myself an OG." Selena then wondered: "What are we meeting about?"
From someone who watched it, it was kind of hilarious. James Corden was asking Selena on what the Tay-Tay meetings are about (and even Selena didn't have a clue). Not just a member. An "OG" member. These girls hang tight.
18 Ariana Grande: "So Down" To Join, "Do You Have To Do Anything Weird To Get In?"
Ariana Grande has her own squad. The "7 Rings" crew got their own article recently– Refinery29 wanted to know just who is so close to Ari, they get to be in her video. Power women in their 20s hang close, though.
The pic should give you a clue. After the 2016 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, Ariana said she would be "so down" to join Taylor Swift's squad, W Magazine reports.
“Oh wow,” Refinery29 quotes Ari adding. “That would be so crazy. Do you have to do anything weird to get in? I don’t know the details." Nor do we.
17 Kanye West: Still Not Done Interrupting Her
It's the biggest feud we've ever seen. In 2009, Kanye West straight-up interrupted Taylor Swift's award at the VMAs. "I'm really happy for you. I'mma let you finish," Kanye said as he grabbed the mic from Swift. "But Beyoncé had one of the best videos of all time."
Kanye West's "I'mma let you finish" is now a meme. In fact, he jokingly uses it in his own lyrics. That was 2009. In 2016, Kanye called Taylor "fake."
As Cosmopolitan reports, the feud continued. "She ain't cool no more" followed in 2017. Kim K seems to have attempted to still those rocky waters, but Kanye is no friend of Taylor's.
16 But Kim Just Announced Being "So Over" The Feud
Kim Kardashian has her own way of handling the haters. Mostly, it's by sending free samples of her fragrances (nice move), but when it comes to Kanye, Kim will wade in.
January 2019 marks the big move– well, for Kim, anyway. "Over it. I feel like we've all moved on," Capital FM quotes Kim saying. Of course, that led to another question, and this one was less easy.
"Who would you rather be stuck in an elevator with, Taylor Swift, or Drake?" Andy Cohen asked Kim on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen, as Hollywood Life reports. Kim chose Taylor, the internet took that as a giant dig to Drake and the drama continues.
15 Gigi Hadid: Invited To The Deadpool Parties
When it comes to the models, you need to keep tabs. With Kendall Jenner nowhere to be seen, Tay-Tay's core squad members have been falling by the wayside. It was enough for In Style to chronicle who's in (and who's out).
"My attendance somewhere does not mean I agree with everything being said in the music playing there. My friends know of my loyalty." This tweet from Gigi dates back to 2016. A rocky past, but Gigi attended the "Reputation" tour in 2018.
In Style places Gigi's status as #In with the squad. We definitely saw it at this Deadpool-themed party from Taylor.
14 Lorde: "Taylor Swift Is So Flawless And So Unattainable" (And She Thinks It's Bad)
Celeb worship can get a little weird. Just look at Cardi B's IG– she's reposting fan pics who have had Cardi's face tattooed on their arms. While this opening line from Lorde sounds like a celeb-on-celeb version of that, the end makes things clear.
"Taylor Swift is so flawless and so unattainable, and I don’t think it’s breeding anything good in young girls. I’m never going to be like Taylor Swift, why can’t I be as pretty as Lorde?" #Woah
As Bustle reports, Lorde did kind of retract the statement, saying she was "very very new to this whole thing." Lorde hangs with Swift in public, but don't think there isn't "Bad Blood."
13 Kendall Jenner: Appears To Have Been Kicked Out Of The Squad
Kendall Jenner is a bit of a lone wolf. Kylie Jenner and Ben Simmons seem to be her 2019 entourage, but everyone's basically still wondering: Was Kendall kicked out the squad?
"I don’t know if Kendall was a part of her squad, I don’t think she was," Kim said, as Metro reports. Considering these two were photo-proven #SquadGoals some years ago, we're smelling something fishy.
That was followed by In Style's report of "shade" being thrown from Taylor to Kendall in the "Look What You Made Me Do" video. 2016 saw a major feud between these two (and it looks like it was permanent).
12 Miley Cyrus: Zero Interest In Joining
Miley Cyrus tells it like it is. "I'm not trying to be in the squad," she said, as NME reports. "None of my friends are famous and not because of any other reason than I just like real people who are living real lives, because I'm inspired by them."
That was enough to land Miley on Nicki Swift's list of celebs who "can't stand" Taylor. Miley then shaded Taylor. As Irish Examiner reports, she said, "I don't get the [whole] revenge thing. That's supposed to be a good example?"
The quote was directly aimed at Taylor's "Bad Blood" video. You won't see these two grabbing a Starbucks together.
11 Camila Cabello & Charlie CXC: Welcome To The New Squad
Literally, how hard is it to wind up on Taylor Swift's IG? If we had words for it, we'd use them. Taylor Swift is no Kylie Jenner. You're lucky if you get an update in a week. The friends are carefully chosen. They're also carefully relevant.
"[Swift] sent me a breakup playlist and said, ‘Come over. Let's talk about it." Seems simple enough, and that was Tay's way of helping Camila Cabello through her breakup. Somehow, Cabello and Charlie XCX are part of Tay-Tay's new squad.
This pic wound up on Taylor's IG in May 2018. The pic currently has over 4.8 million likes. Talk about competition. Kendall Jenner is nowhere to be seen, and these two girls seem to have replaced her.
10 Nicki Minaj: Please, It's Nicki, There's Always Beef
Nicki Minaj has made her ability to criticise people perfectly clear. "Barbie Dreams" brought down every rapper around, but Nicki Minaj is a gas-in-the-tank kind of girl. If the tank isn't empty (which it never is), she keeps going.
2015 was the year Nicki tweeted that her music videos were favoured by one that "celebrates women with very slim bodies." While Nicki never specified Taylor as the target, that was when both girls were considered for video of the year.
The possible video in question? "Bad Blood" is full of models (and Taylor's naturally lithe frame). Nicki officially steers clear.
9 Justin Bieber: Keeps His Distance Since #Splitsville With Selena
Justin Bieber is one heck of an authority. He's also one to pick his friends carefully. As Hollywood Life reports, Justin's former relationship with Selena Gomez has got in the way of socialising with Swift.
"He blames Taylor for some of his issues with Selena and that will never go away. Justin knows Taylor doesn't like him and never will and the feeling is mutual."
Well, that pretty much says it all. Justin and Selena come with biggest #History ever, but with a seeming eye on her bestie, Taylor isn't taking any chances by hanging with The Biebs. #Mutual.
8 Kylie Jenner: Just Named Two Cosmetics Shades After Tay-Tay
Kylie Jenner isn't in music. The world's most self-obsessed girl might be raising Stormi responsibly, but it's Kylie Jenner. "Me, me, me" sums this girl up– the pinks and satins are just the cherry on the cake. Unless...if there's money to be made?
"Forever and Always" and "Story of Us" are now Kylie Cosmetics shades. Well, if it's a way to boost your $900 million...
As Allure reports, Kylie's latest drop includes two shades named after Taylor's songs. Kind of a random one, but with Forbes listing you as "Youngest Self-Made Billionaire," it's assumed you know your marketing. While Kylie isn't a traditional "bestie," she's inching closer.
7 JLO: 2013 Was A Long Time Ago
Googling pics of celebrities together needs to be done with care. Sure, you'll find pics of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt loved-up on the red carpet. You'll also know that they're old pictures.
JLO and Taylor last performed together in 2013 at The Staples Center in New York. That's over five years ago. There was no big divorce. No big Twitter spat. Quite possible, too, is that nothing went down.
The latest from these two? They both slayed on the red carpet. That's hardly a headline. Being in the same location does not a friendship make, so we'll count Jennifer Lopez as keeping her distance.
6 Bella Hadid: It's Like They Live On Different Planets
Bella Hadid does what every sister does. She keeps her own sister close. While Gigi and Bella Hadid aren't yet #KardashianFamous, they're getting there. Gigi might have been a core member of Taylor's squad back in the day, but the appearances are dwindling.
Bella Hadid has her famous friends. When you're dating The Weeknd, that's kind of a given. Bella and Taylor? "Not a Swiftie" seems to sum this model up.
In fact, Google Bella and Taylor, and you'll get a search engine thinking you typed Gigi (plus a bunch of results for the handful of appearances that Gigi and Tay-Tay have made together).
5 Demi Lovato: Don't Let The Selfies Fool You
Award ceremonies are a big opportunity– to send out a message that might be a little misleading. Demi Lovato might have posed here with Taylor, but read Demi's words, and you'll see a different story. In 2016, Demi told Glamour:
"I don't see anybody in any sort of squad that has a normal body. It's kind of this false image of what people should look like. And what they should be like, and it's not real…"
Another can of worms got opened after Taylor donated $250,000 to Kesha to help with "any of her financial needs," as Tay-Tay's rep confirmed. Demi wasn't happy with the tweet, and we haven't seen these two rubbing shoulders since.
4 Rihanna: Doesn't Feel Their "Brands Match"
Rihanna is way more powerful than you think. Harper's Bazaar has already hinted that Fenty Beauty may outsell "both" Kylie Cosmetics and KKW Beauty. Where RiRi stands with Taylor? Not in solidarity, it would seem.
"I don't think I would, I just don't think it makes sense," Rihanna said about performing with Taylor. "I don't think our brands are the same. I don't think they match."
As NME reports, Rihanna has zero interest in sharing the stage with Taylor Swift. Of course, we can't help but notice that Taylor doesn't hang with older girls. JLO is out. Rihanna is 30. Taylor goes young.
3 Zayn Malik: "She Said She Thought I Was Cool, I Kind Of Blushed"
Zayn Malik probably goes where Gigi Hadid tells him to go– that's if they're even still together. This guy can speak for himself, though. While Zayn hasn't reached "IG post level" with Taylor, he's still a giant Swiftie, as Billboard reports him saying,
"I spoke a bit to Taylor... at Gigi’s house we briefly spoke and she told me she really enjoyed the album," he said before adding, "She said she thought I was cool and I kind of blushed a bit and didn’t know how to take it."
Okay, we'll admit it. The thought of Zayn blushing from a compliment kind of made us melt a bit.
2 Ed Sheeran: It's Like The Most Awesome Friendship Ever
Ready for it? "24 Reasons." That's how many Capital FM could come up with for why Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift's friendship is so beyond awesome. If these two aren't taking British-inspired, tea-drinking selfies together, they're throwing us this pic. Ed told Rolling Stone:
"She would be there if everything ended for me." Ed then went onto call Taylor "kind of an anomaly in that sense."
Ed opened Taylor's 2013 tour, but this isn't a JLO deal. These two have remained BFFs since, and you only need to hop over to Taylor's IG for proof. As Elite Daily reports, Taylor has called Ed the "James Taylor to [her] Carole King.”
1 Katy Perry: Feuded For Years, Katy Sent Taylor An Actual Olive Branch
"Beware the Regina George in sheep's clothing." That was Katy Perry's swipe to Taylor back in the day, but the Mean Girls-inspired reference documented by Refinery29 is old news. These two feuded for years, but a literal olive branch seems to have been sent out.
In May 2018, Katy sent Taylor an actual olive branch in the mail, BBC reports. Taylor posted a video of it (pretty much a sign of acceptance) and the beef finally seemed over.
"Bad Blood" was reportedly about Katy, while "Swish Swish" was about Swift. All water under the bridge. Well, for Katy. The others on this list have a way to go.
Sources: InStyle, NY Post, Elle, Hello Giggles, W magazine, Refinery29, Cosmopolitan, Capital FM, Hollywood Life, Bustle, Metro, InStyle, NME, Nicki Swift, Irish Examiner, Rolling Stone, Allure, Harper’s Bazaar, Billboard, Elite Daily