Whitney Houston - Lead
Credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Today, we honor the iconic singer-actress Whitney Houston, who would have turned 53. From a fresh-faced teen model to InStyle cover girl, the New Jersey native left her mark in the entertainment industry, racking up a handful of Grammy nominations and wins in her career.

From her debut studio album, "Whitney Houston," at the age of 22, it was clear this vocal powerhouse was a force to be reckoned with. Her first-ever singles rose to the top of the charts, making this fresh-faced youngster an overnight sensation. Flash forward nearly 30 years and the star was still making music, including the hit "I Look to You" in 2009. "It's a very powerful song," she told InStyle. "I listen to it and it gives me strength and courage. Even when I don't sing it, I can hear it."

Her songs, from "I Have Nothing" to "I Will Always Love You," certainly live on. In honor of Houston's birthday, we're taking a look back at her most unforgettable moments over the years. Click through our gallery to relive her standout performances, flawless studio albums, and more.