It's been seventeen years since Britney Spears released her first album, "...Baby One More Time," nine since she had her very public breakdown, and three since she released her last album, "Britney Jean." And even today, she's still one of the most beloved, obsessed-over, and resilient figures in popular music. On August 26th, Spears will release her ninth studio album, "Glory." This comes two years after she announced that she was renewing her contract with RCA and as she enters the final stretch of her four-year Las Vegas residency show, "Britney: Piece of Me."
The early-2000s Britney we all know and love is the girl who says, "Oops" and then does it again. She's innocent but daring; coy but don't cross her, and in the early days of her career, relatively untouched by toxic celebrity culture. Obviously, a lot has changed. There were breakups, a Las Vegas wedding, children, buzz cuts, court orders, and conservatorships. But now Spears is on the brink of yet another comeback, and according to her Instagram, she's doing better than ever.
@BritneySpears is arguably the most earnest and joyful celebrity social media account out there. Our heroine loves inspirational quotes and memes like, "That feeling when you don't know what the f--k you're feeling." She's consistently amazed by the little things in life, like toast that's in the shape of a heart. She loves "chillaxing," painting, and working out after a visit to the Cheesecake factory. She's a cool mom. She loves to read, do handstands and online shop (but not for designers or expensive things). And the best part is, she seems to exist in this safe and sunny bubble where likes and filters don't matter.
For someone whose life has been over-scrutinized and controlled for so long, the honesty and candidness of Britney Spears' Instagram account is both refreshing and oftentimes dumbfounding. It's very possible she doesn't know what she's doing on Instagram. And that she doesn't really care to. Or, maybe she does and we'll just never know what's going on inside her head. Regardless, she appears to be living her best life, and if you look closely, you might catch a glimpse of her teenage self.
This photo of Britney "just chillaxing" in the pool with Cyndi Lauper's "Time After Time" playing in the background sums it all up.
But when she posted this, "Don't Worry, Be Happy," photo montage, we were admittedly a little worried.
Britney Spears knows how to dab. She's the epitome of "cool mom," and oftentimes seems to be having more fun than her kids.
This video of her security team watching her kids, and then her documenting fondly from afar, is an example of how her posts are both haunting and hilarious.
No amount of money and fame in the world will keep Britney Spears from eating at the Cheesecake Factory.
The world learned from Spears' Instagram that the pop star also likes to paint.
This photo of Britney Spears and Hillary Clinton staring into each other's eyes needs no caption.
Another hilariously bizarre photo: Britney Spears surfing in Las Vegas with Adele's "Send My Love (To Your New Lover)" playing in the background.
Britney Spears has not one, but two mugs that say, "It's motherf--cking tea time." [Sips tea.]
Britney Spears loves to read. She's declared Emily Giffin the "best author in the world."
Britney Spears feels the way about the little things in life like we do about her Instagram: Wow...just wow!
Watch Halle Berry, Jodie Foster, and Priyanka Chopra perform Britney Spears' hits "Toxic" and "Oops I Did It Again" in the newest episode of "Lyrical Improv with Lynn Hirschberg," below.