Christy Hemme, AJ Lee and Trish Stratus are some of the most legendary Divas in WWE history – but what happened to them after their wrestling glory days were over? Scroll down this WWE memory lane to find out what they and our other favorite female champions have been up to, and how different they look today…
The blonde beauty joined WWE in 1996 and was known for her courtship, both on and off the ring, with Marc Mero. But in 1999 Sable shocked the wrestling world by leaving WWE, and sued them for harassment and poor working conditions. The case was eventually settled. In 2000 the WWE star returned to the ring but left again in 2004. Sable went on to divorce Mero, and is happily married to wrestler Brock Lesnar since 2006. The couple now have three children together.
A former NFL cheerleader, Keibler became one of the most popular WWE female wrestlers of all time. She was known especially for her suggestive entrances to the ring. Keibler went on to appear on the second season of Dancing With The Stars and acted in various sitcoms. She even dated George Clooney for two years. Keibler is now promoting healthy living on social media, and is married to businessman Jared Pobre. The two welcomed daughter Ava in 2015, and son Bodhi in 2018.
The stunning blond from Canada started wrestling with WWE in 2000. She was a fierce competitor in the ring, and won the Women’s Championship seven times during her career. Sratus retired from wrestling in 2006 and in 2013 she was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. The 43-year-old is now a wife and mother. She has made several television appearances since her retirement and was seen most recently in the film Gridlocked. She also has her own yoga studio called Stratusphere in Canada.
Kelly Kelly also decided to leave the wrestling business when she was only 25 years old. During her time at WWE she worked as a ring announcer, referee, and then a wrestler. She announced that she left the company in order to become a model. For a short time, Kelly was on the reality show WAGS, which follows the lives of wives and girlfriends of famous athletes. The former wrestler was married to former NHL football star Sheldon Souray.
Lita recently turned 41, but still stands out from the crowd. She joined WWE in 2000 and was known for her bright red hair and tomboy style. She made up one third of the wresting alliance Team Xtreme, along with her ex boyfriend Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy. Lita managed to win the Women’s Championship a total of four times during her WWE career. After retiring, she released an album, hosted her own radio show and also formed an unlikely friendship with her former wrestling rival Trish Stratus.
Becky Lynch, born as Rebecca Quin, is from Ireland. In her childhood, she used to watch wrestling with her brother, Ricky, who is the famous wrestler Gonzo de Mondo. Becky started wresting professionally in 2002, and has said that it is the best outlet to manage her emotions. In 2013, Becky was hired to be a part of WWE, and has been a part of several dramatic story lines. Becky is still a WWE wrestling diva today, and she’s amazing to watch.
Alexa Bliss was born in Ohio, and had started playing sports by the age of five. Alexa ran track, played softball, and did kickboxing and gymnastics. She tried out for WWE 2013, and the producers seriously loved her. Alexa sadly suffered from an eating disorder, but she says that wrestling helped her get better. Today, Alexa is healthy, and she still wrestles for WWE. Alexa loves watching Disney movies and, for cosplay events, likes to dress up as her favorite characters.
Natalya Neidhart, known only as Natalya, seems to have been born to wrestle. Natalya is the daughter of wrestler Jim ‘The Anvil,’ and granddaughter of wrestler Stu Hart. In short, this means Natalya is a third generation wrestler – the only one in the world. Natalya basically wrestled from the time she was born up until 2007. That year, she was signed by WWE and never looked back. Natalya has been in alliances with other popular wresters, such as Ronda Rousey.
Michelle McCool – yes, that is her real name – grew up participating in school sports, but always mades sure to set aside time to watch wrestling. Michelle was a part of a WWE competition looking for the next diva, but ultimately lost. WWE loved her so much, however, that they signed her anyways in 2004. In 2006 she started making regular appearances as a “villain” but then was rebranded as a good guy. She officially retired in 2011, but makes some appearances for special events.
Velvet Sky, whose real name is Jamie Lynn Szantyr, was born in 1981. She was trained by professional wrestler, Jason Knight, and started wrestling in matches around 2004. Although Velvet has never signed a long-term contract with WWE, she made a few appearances on the show in 2005 and 2006. Today, she is a free agent, who wrestles at only when she chooses to do so. Velvet has also made a cameo appearance on the comedy show, ‘Impractical Jokers.’
Angelina Love has stated that she was inspired to get into wrestling because of pro-wrestler Shawn Michaels. She began her career in 2000, and was signed to WWE in 2004 after an impressive tryout. During her time with WWE she tore her ACL, putting her out of commission for several months. In 2007, WWE decided not to remove her contract, and she moved on to other wrestling companies. Angelina is best known for her matches at TNA, but today she does mostly independent work.
Maryse Ouellet is not only a professional wrestler, but also an actress, reality star, model, and business woman, as well. She was hired by WWE in 2006, and won her first Divas Championship in 2008. In 2012, Maryse decided to leave WWE, but apparently couldn’t stay away for long because she returned in 2016. Today, she is still wrestling with the company and is involved in many dramatic story lines. We can’t wait to see what happens next between her and Brie Bella!
Charlotte Flair is the daughter of Ric Flair, making her a second generation wrestler. Charlotte was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, where she developed her love of wrestling. In 2000, at only 14 years old, Charlotte entered the professional wrestling world. It was only a matter of time before WWE sought out a contract with her. In 2012 Charlotte became an official WWE diva. In total, Charlotte has won five championships with WWE, and we’re certain it’s only the beginning.
Mickie James is a multitalented woman who began wrestling in 1999. She managed to develop a name for herself in the wrestling world, and was signed by WWE in 2005. Mickie became a part of a huge story line, and fans absolutely loved her. She left WEE in 2010, but couldn’t stay away for long – returning in 2016. Sadly, Mickie badly injured her ACL, meaning she’ll be off of her feet for seven months minimum. At least now she can focus on her country music career.
Tamara Lynn Sytch, known by her ring name, Sunny, was one of the original divas of WWE in the 90s. She left the company in 1998 after having an off the ring feud with Sable. After the altercation, Sunny was let go. Since leaving the company she worked in sales at a gym and tanning salon. She later went to school and became a certified medical assistant. In 2009, she made a surprise appearance at Wrestlemania, and by 2011, Sunny was officially inducted into WWE Hall of Fame, having unanimous support form all the WWE Divas.
It probably doesn’t come as a surprise Victoria was a body builder before she first appeared on WWE in 2000. She quickly became a fan favorite, but it wasn’t until 2002 that started wrestling full-time – becoming just as famous for her many wins, as she was for her ongoing feud with Trish Stratus. Since her 2009 retirement, Victoria leads a more normal life, running two restaurants. Se also opened a car shop in Kentucky, but unfortunately it burned down in 2010.
Chyna’s muscular build and great athleticism made her one of the first female wrestlers to ever (successfully) compete against male wrestlers. She also became the only woman to ever win the WWE Intercontinental Championship. But Chyna left WWE in 2001 after some relationship problems with Triple H, her partner in the ring and in real life. Chyna was also a popular Playboy model and an aspiring actress, and had a few appearances on reality shows until she unexpectedly passed away in 2016.
Wilson’s career with WWE started in 2001 after wrestling with rival promotion WCW for two years. Wilson was obviously stunning, and that’s partly the reason she mostly competed in matches that resulted in the loser having to remove their clothing. Wilson left WWE in 2008 and went to appear on the NBC reality show I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!, and also dated Yankees player Alex Rodriguez until 2015. Today she promotes a fitness lifestyle brand on social media.
Stephanie McMahon, the daughter of WWE CEO Vince McMahon, was often involved in violent storylines in the ring. For example, in one story she had to defend her mother from her cheating father which resulted in her getting choked with a lead pipe by her father (yikes!). Today she leads a much less dramatic life behind the scenes, as the Chief Brand Officer of WWE. She is also married to her former on-screen partner, Triple H, and the pair has three children together.
Holly played the role of Hardcore Holly and Crash Holly’s cousin, before becoming the sidekick Mighty Molly to wrestler The Hurricane. She stayed in WWE for five years and won the Women’s Championship twice and the Hardcore Championship, which is usually won by a man, once. After retiring in 2005, Holly made a few more WWE appearances until 2009. But she now leads a life far away from the WWE spotlight, working with a variety of charities and rehab programs in Minnesota.
A college graduate and former beauty queen, Maria Kanellis made her debut in WWE when she almost won the Diva Search in 2004. She started as a backstage interviewer and eventually was trained to be in the ring for SmackDown Live. In 2011 she retired from WWE and got married to wrestler Mike Bennett. The pair came back to WWE Money in the Bank in 2017, and shortly after, they announced that they were expecting a baby.
Perhaps better known as Shelly Martinez, Ariel was a part of the New Breed segment of the ECW WWE brand. She joined the WWE in 2006, and while the segment may have failed, Ariel certainly did not. She was a part of the WWE for a year before she went off to TNA Wrestling and then into acting. She has acted in mainly smaller budget films, especially in the horror movie genre. Since 2011 she has been the Hollywood event correspondent for a horror news website.
Rochelle Loewen was a model before she joined WWE, and is most famous for what happened outside of the ring with wrestler Randy Orton. He was apparently offended because she admitted to not knowing who he was. She was then harshly bullied by Orton’s fans. In 2005 her WWE career came to an end after she got a groin injury. After her years with WWE, she played four seasons with the LA Lingerie Football League. But since 2008 she has stayed away from the limelight.
Giovanni was another contestant of the 2004 WWE Diva Search and rival of Amy Weber. She didn’t win but signed a contract with WWE shortly after her elimination. However, Giovanni’s career with WWE was not very successful, and didn’t last long. By 2006 she had quit. After leaving WWE she decided to take an internship for a California chiropractor. She now has a certificate in massage therapy and is focusing on her new career, far away from professional wrestling.
AJ Lee was a wrestler for WWE from 2007 until 2015 and surprised everyone when she announced her retirement at the young age of 28. When she left, she made a statement about women’s rights and said it wasn’t fair that she was making only a fraction of what the men wrestlers were making. Lee then started working on writing a memoir called Crazy Is My Superpower, which was released in 2017 and became a New York Times Best Seller.
Brie Bella was a really big name in WWE when she left, leaving her other Bella twin Nicole behind. The twins were instrumental in building a female fan base for WWE, especially a younger female fan base. Brie decided to leave despite her success, so that she could start a family. She had her first child with her husband Daniel Bryan in 2017. Brie had planned on returning to the ring once she had her child, but then decided to retire in 2019.
Christy Hemme made her debut on WWE after winning the second season of Diva Search. But Hemme requested to be released from the company shortly after her training. She instead went to TNA wrestling promotion, to work as a manager and announcer. She also tried to enter the music industry and recorded a couple of songs entitled Society Box and Where Are You. Since 2010 Hemme is married to Charley Patterson, and the two welcomed quadruplets in 2018.
Terri Runnels did more than just wrestle on WWE, she was also a manager and backstage interviewer. In 2004, her time with WWE came to an end and she worked in the independent circuit. Runnels is now a philanthropist and is involved in multiple charitable organizations such as the Children’s Miracle Network. She also created a writing competition called Make the World Write which asks contestants to write about how they want to improve the world.
Ashley Massaro, who competed in the WWE under the ring name of Kaitlyn, was most known for her incredible confidence in the ring. She won the third season of WWE NXT and then teamed up on SmackDown with her best friend AJ Lee as “The Chickbusters.” After winning the belt, however, she was eventually forgotten in the WWE universe and left. But turns out Kaitlyn was great at more than wrestling, as she went on to create her own clothing line called Celestial Bodiez. Tragically, she passed away in May, 2019, reportedly after taking her own life.
Although Michelle was not one of the greatest wrestlers, she was definitely known as being a talented sports entertainer in WWE from 2004-2009. For someone who was never trained before her WWE debut, she did pretty good for herself and was a WWE Women’s Champion and was named Woman of the Year in 2007 by Pro Wrestling Illustrated. Michelle now focuses more on her family with husband Ken Gee Ehrilch and their three daughters.
Anastacia Rose worked in WWE as a backstage interviewer for SmackDown who made her debut interviewing Rey Mysterio. Unfortunately she was released from the company in January 2008, less than a year after she debuted. Since her departure from WWE, she was a cast member on the reality show Pussycat Dolls Present: The Search for the Next Doll, and released four songs on her Myspace Music page.
Eve Torres was a member of the Los Angeles Clippers dance team when she won a competition called Diva Search in 2007. She went into the WWE and won three Divas Championships. Her retirement in 2013 was sudden and was a shock to the entire corporation. She now focuses on teaching self defense classes as well as doing some acting, having appeared in the film Matador, amongst others. She is also a mother-of-two!
Before going into professional wrestling, Maryse Ouellet was a model back home in Canada. She then decided to try out to be a WWE Diva in the 2006 Diva Search. She stayed in wrestling for five years, leaving in 2011. Ouellet has since become a realtor as well as a clothing designer, launching a line called House of Maryse which sells both jewlery as well as clothes. She is currently married to WWE wrestler Mike “The Miz” Mizanin.
Cherry was known best in the WWE world as the valet for the 50s style tag team Deuce and Domino. She was also part of the team which beat Brian Kendrick and Paul London in the WWE Tag Team Championship, one of the longest running ever in WWE history. In 2008, WWE made her leave the team in order to try a solo career. But that didn’t work out for Cherry, and she was released later that year. Cherry, or Kara Drew, is today working for Sea World in Orlando, Florida.
Ivory joined WWE during the Attitude Era alongside talented and popular female wrestlers Trish Stratus and Lita. While Ivory was not nearly as successful as the two female stars, she did create some respect when she won the WWE Women’s Championship during her first year in the company. She won two more championships during her six years with WWE. Ivory now focuses on animal care and even opened her own animal daycare center in Friday Harbor, Washington.
Alundra Blayze is probably known best for being the one who threw her WWE Women’s title in the trash can on live television. After leaving her wrestling career behind, she got a call asking if she was interested in being a monster truck driver. After some training, Blayze became a full-time driver and won the World Finals in 2004 and 2005. Blayze is now the owner of a grooming and spa center for pets in Florida, where she lives. She has also recently opened a doggy bakery.
Debra McMichael was the wrestling manager of Jeff Jarrett and Stone Cole Steve Austin until she decided to leave WWE in order to pursue an acting career. She recently played a role in Legacy of the Tengu and the Sci-Fi film Gathering of Heroes: Legend of the Seven Swords. McMichael also graduated from University of Alabama and is planning on returning to finish a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice.
Beth Phoenix was known for her combination of natural beauty and incredible talent. Phoenix is a three-time WWE Women’s Champion, and was the youngest person to every be inducted in the WWE Hall of Fame, at the age of 36. Phoenix now left wrestling behind her for a more calm life, married to former wrestler Edge, and is focusing on being a mom to their daughter Lyric.
Alicia Fox signed a contract with WWE in 2006 and performed under the Raw brand. She made her debut on SmackDown and played the role of a wedding planner in the ring. Fox won the WWE Divas Championship in 2010 and became the first African American to ever win the title. She was a cast member of the E! reality show called Total Divas. She is still wrestling with WWE and is the longest tenured female wrestler in the history of the company.
Before going into the WWE as a manager, Melina Perez was actually a beauty pageant contestant. While she was a part of the WWE, she managed to win two Divas Championships as well as three Women’s Championships. Bret Hart was so impressed with her that he even called her one of the best wrestlers in the world. After she left wrestling, Perez had a blog where she posted pictures of her modeling shoots, and she broke up with her boyfriend former wrestler John Morrison.
During the Ruthless Agression era of the WWE, Cruiserweight Jamie Noble was constantly accompanied by his girlfriend Nidia. Nidia eventually won the first ever season of Tough Enough back in 2001. However, she decided to leave the WWE three years later in 2004. She has since gotten married and has two kids. She also began learning how to be a chef, having studied at the Culinary Institute Lenotre, in Houston, Texas.
Jackie Gayda was not really considered a top while she was wrestling in the WWE, but she did make her mark by becoming one of the most famous managers in the organization. In fact, she managed more than her fair share of superstars. Once Gayda left the WWE in 2005, she began wrestling in the independent circuit. She now runs a nutrition store as well as a smoothie store in Frisco, Texas, where she is raising her four children.
Known as the sister of Ken Shamrock, Ryan Shamrock – whose real name is Alicia Webb – wrestled as a diva for a year between 1998 and 1999. She wrestled for 10 more years down in Mexico, but has since retired from the Mexican ring. She now works as a fitness model, and is a spokesperson for the One Step Closer Foundation, a foundation for people who suffer from cerebral palsy.
Sarah Lee is another winner of the Tough Enough competition, having beaten the rest of the contenders back in 2015. She spent the majority of her time in the performance center training and only barely making it out to be filmed, but she was then cut from the organization in October of 2016. Because Lee was not progressing as much as the WWE would have hoped, and then because of her pregnancy, the organization just decided to pull the plug on her.
Lilian Garcia is known to most of us as the ring announcer for WWE. However, in 2016, she left the organization because she had some personal issues. She revealed her father was suffering from two different kinds of cancers, and she therefore decided to quit work in order to be with him during his final days. If anything, that sounds like a perfectly legitimate reason to leave such a lucrative job.
Devin Taylor is pretty well known as a backstage interviewer for NXT. One of the things that was perhaps most beloved by fans was when Dana Brook would pat Taylor’s head at the end of every interview. Taylor eventually began training at the Performance Center in order to try and become a wrestler, but she was not making enough progress. So, she was dropped. Since then, she has appeared in The Bachelor.
Cameron was a Diva who did in fact make it out of the Performance Center, however, fans were not very pleased with her. In fact, she was ranked as one of the least favorite wrestlers by WWE fans. Cameron has since been fired from the WWE due to supporting another former wrestler who has been speaking out against the wrestling organization. She is now trying to get into professional acting.
While Layla El’s looks and personality are what made her stand out to WWE recruiters, she was not very well known within the WWE itself. She would wrestle in the women’s division, but typically only as a background performer. She did manage to stay with the organization for a long time however, being employed by the WWE for a decade. She left the organization in 2015, married wrestler Ricky Ortiz, and seems to enjoy living life. We can’t really tell though since she deleted her social media.
Gabi was on Tough Enough, but she was not the center of attention while she was on the show. According to some critics, Gabi’s issue was that she was not a beautiful pin up girl nor was she an alternative, goth like wrestle girl. She left the show and realized that she needed to change, so she began posting more revealing pictures of herself on social media.
Zahra Schreiber was never really a big name in professional wrestling, having only been signed to be at the Performance Center. However, she was involved in a cheating scandal, being the third woman in a love triangle between Seth Rollins and his then fiance. Schreiber has also courted scandal on her social media, and was even fired over her inappropriate and offensive remarks, but she is still trying to make it in wrestling.
Before joining WWE, Weber acted in a variety of television shows such as CSI: Las Vegas and Andy Richter Controls the Universe. In 2004 Weber joined WWE Diva Search and had a feud with fellow contestant Joy Giovanni. She said she was unhappy with WWE and retired the following year. Since leaving WWE, Weber has returned to her acting and modeling career. In 2012 she even debuted her dance album. She last appeared in the film Steps of Faith in 2014.
This Lithuanian beauty was a fitness model before becoming a professional wrestler for WWE. However, just because she was in good shape it doesn’t mean she was a great wrestler. On the contrary, even with plenty of help from WWE she was unable to win any championships. So perhaps it wasn’t surprising she was released by the company in 2014, after five years. She is now focusing on her career as a personal trainer instead, and resides in Tampa, Florida.
Jazz was one of the first women to wrestle a man on a mainstream wrestling program and she won the Women’s Championship twice but was released from WWE in 2004. Jazz, or Carlene Moore as her real name is, is still wrestling but in independent circuits. She married former WWE wrestler Rodney Mack in 2008, and the couple live in Louisiana with their twin daughters. They also run a wrestling school together called Dogg Pound Wrestling.
Gail Kim was born in Toronto, Canada, but don’t let that fact make you think she was all hugs and smiles. Gail started wrestling independently in 2000, and was recruited to WWE a short two years later. In fact, Gail is the only woman in WWE Diva history to win a championship in her debut match. Gail has a mixed relationship with WWE, leaving the company and going back. Gail officially retired her wrestling boots, but she still produces various wrestling shows.
Mercedes Kaestner-Varnado, more commonly known as Sasha Banks, is a California girl who spent her childhood days watching All Japan Women’s Pro-Wrestling. When she was just 16 years old she began training to be a professional wrestler, and fought in her first match at 18 years old. in 2012, Sasha signed a contract with WWE, and she immediately became a success. However, it seems Sasha and WWE producers have not always gotten along, because she had to take a four month hiatus. Today, however, she’s back at it.