Our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list will look at one of the most successful female singers, songwriters and producers of all time. Mariah Carey has sold over 220 million records. She is known for having a five-octave range. She is one of the first people to have five of her singles reach number one. The talented singer has at least 19 number one singles as a female solo artist. She is one of the few people to achieve that feat. She has won numerous awards throughout her career. She has been inducted in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Mariah Carey has been an inspiration for different artists.
Mariah Carey has been known for her beauty and style. Her beauty and style are reflected on her album covers. She is very photogenic and her beauty leaps out at you whenever you look at her album covers. She knows how to be sultry and seductive without being inappropriate. She keeps it classy. Mariah Carey likes to have fun and it is shown on her album covers. The photographers and artists behind her album covers show her in the best light. We don’t think Mariah Carey knows how to take a bad picture. The photographers and artists make her look breathtaking. Her album covers are simple. They feature her picture on the cover. She doesn’t go for graphics or special effects. Her face is all she needs for the album covers. She has a lot of album covers that could have been added on our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list. Each album cover showcases how beautiful she is.
# 10 – Music Box
The first pick on our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list is Music Box. Music Box is Mariah Carey’s third studio album. Mariah Carey changed up her musical style for this album. She wanted to broaden her audience. She wanted her album to be more pop and r&b. This album cover is a black and white photo of the popular singer. She is lying on her hand in the picture. She is giving a smoldering look in the picture. She has a half smile on her face. Mariah Carey looks as if she could be laying on a pillow, but her head is on her hand.
Daniela Federici took a beautiful shot of Mariah Carey. It is an up-close shot of the songbird. Her skin looks flawless and smooth in the picture. Daniela Federici didn’t use any props or graphics in the picture. All she needed was a beautiful picture of Mariah Carey. Daniela Federici chose to use a black and white photo of Mariah Carey which was a good choice. It makes the picture look soothing. Daniela Federici is a photographer, director and producer. She has worked on magazines throughout her career. She is able to execute her style and elegant vision in her photos. She has worked with Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Radiohead, Debbie Harry, Jade, After 7, Toni Braxton, Jon Secada, Harry Connick Jr., Vanessa Williams, as well as others. Music Box was released in August 1993. It peaked at number one on Billboard 200. It features the singles “Dreamlover,” “Hero,” “Without You,” “Never Forget You” and “Anytime You Need a Friend.” The album sold over 28 million copies worldwide.
# 9 – Daydream
The next pick on our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list is Daydream. Daydream is Mariah Carey’s fifth studio album. Mariah Carey took more control over the musical content with this album. She wanted a more urban sound than she had on her previous albums. It is also the start of her vocal transition. This album cover features another black and white photo of Mariah Carey. This is a zoomed in shot of Mariah Carey. Her hair is windblown as if she is standing in front of a fan. She is wearing black in the picture. You can see a shot of her pretty white teeth. Mariah Carey looks like a porcelain doll on the album cover.
Steven Meisel took a breathtaking photo of Mariah Carey. She looks as if she is in a trance or staring into your soul. The singer was going through issues with her label, but you would never know that based on the photo. She was able to put her troubles aside to take the photograph. He used monochromes in the picture. He used a good blend of dark colors. Mariah Carey’s skin tone and the lettering help brighten up the picture. Steven Meisel is a photographer in the fashion industry. He helped discover models. He has also taken pictures of celebrities. Some of his clients include Rod Stewart, Madonna, Whitney Houston, Jody Watley, as well as others. Daydream was released in September 1995. The album peaked at number one on Billboard 200. Daydream features the singles “Fantasy,” “One Sweet Day,” “Open Arms,” “Always Be My Baby,” “Forever” and “Underneath the Stars.” Daydream sold over 11 million copies.
# 8 – Charmbracelet
The eighth pick on our Top10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list is Charmbracelet. Charmbracelet is Mariah Carey’s ninth album. This is one of Mariah Carey’s personal albums. She wanted to talk about love as well as personal issues. She also wanted to have fun on this album. This is our first colorful album cover. The vibrant album cover features an up-close shot of the superstar. She is standing in front of a wall. She has her hand on her head. Her hair is wavy. Some of the hair is cascading in her face. She has a flip in her bang that mostly covers her left eye.
Carlo Dalla Chiesa, Ray Lego and Sante D’Orazio captured a gorgeous picture of Mariah Carey. They didn’t have her wear a lot of makeup in the picture. It gives her a fresh-face look. Mariah Carey wanted to talk about love while having fun and that is the look they created for her. They keep the colors even-toned to match her skin color. This is mainly a bright picture. The dark color of her mole and eyes even out the brightness. Carlo Dalla is a photographer who has taken pictures of models. Ray Lego is considered one of the best photographers in the world. He is a versatile photographer who takes different types of pictures. He has been involved in different ad campaigns.
Sante D’Orazio is a photographer who has worked with Angelina Jolie, Sharon Stone, Pamela Anderson, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Christina Aguilera, as well as others. He is known for taking steamy pictures. He has worked on magazines. Charmbracelet was released in December 2002. The album peaked at number three on Billboard 200. Charmbracelet features the singles “Through the Rain,” “Boy (I Need You)” and “Bringin’ On the Heartbreak.” Charmbracelet sold over three million copies.
# 7 – Rainbow
Rainbow is Mariah Carey’s seventh studio album. Mariah Carey is constantly changing her style, so it is no surprise that she changed it for this album too. She wanted a blend of hip hop and r&b songs as well as pop songs. The seductive album cover features Mariah Carey standing in front of a wall. It is a bold album cover for Mariah Carey because she is showing more skin than she did on her previous album covers. She was exposing herself to her fans musically as well as through her artwork. She is wearing a matching midriff tank top and underwear. There is a rainbow painted on the wall as well as her tank top. Mariah Carey has her hands crossed above her head. Her hair is curly and draped over her shoulders. This is a different choice for her, but she keeps it classy.
Photographer David LaChapelle brought out a sensuous side to Mariah Carey. He made her look seductive and fun. He gave her a chance to show her girly side. He chose not to zoom in on her face. He wanted her sexy figure to be the star of the album cover. The brightness of the background makes the picture standout. He creatively used a rainbow to describe the album title. Her name is written in rainbow colors. David LaChapelle is a popular photographer who has worked with Mariah Carey, Lady Gaga, Michael Jackson, Katy Perry, Britney Spears, Kanye West, David Bowie, Elton John, Tupac, as well as others. Rainbow was released in November 1999. The album peaked at number two on Billboard 200. Rainbow features the singles “Heartbreaker,” “Thank God I Found You,” “Can’t Take That Away (Mariah’s Theme)” and “Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now).” Rainbow sold over eight million copies.
# 6 – Merry Christmas
Coming in at number six is Merry Christmas. The album Merry Christmas is Mariah Carey’s fourth studio album as well as her first Christmas album. This is the album that features the uber popular “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” This festive album cover represents Christmas. Mariah Carey is on her knees in the snow. She is wearing a fiery red Santa outfit. There is white fur around her neck and wrists. She is wearing a black belt. It appears to be snowing in the picture. Part of her hair is pinned up while the rest is flowing down her back. She has a piece of hair on the right side of her face.
Daniela Federici created an illusion that it is Christmas in the picture. Daniela Federici did a fantastic job making you think about Christmastime with this photograph. She made it appear as if it was snowing on the album cover. The snow appears on Mariah Carey’s outfit, but it is not in her hair. We’re not sure what to think about that so we won’t touch it. Daniela Federici used the right colors in the picture. She keeps the color scheme simple. It is a good combination of white, red and black. There is no way that you won’t think about Christmas while looking at this album cover. Merry Christmas was released in October 1994. The album peaked at number three on Billboard 200. Merry Christmas features the singles “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” “Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)” and “Joy to the World.” The album sold over eight million copies.
# 5 – Me. I Am Mariah…The Elusive Chanteuse
The next pick on our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list is Me. I Am Mariah…The Elusive Chanteuse. Me. I Am Mariah…The Elusive Chanteuse is Mariah Carey’s 14th studio album. Once again Mariah Carey wanted a more hip-hop sound. The picturesque album cover features Mariah Carey in a beaded bathing suit. She appears to be posing at the beach during sunset. Her feet are in the water while her arms are above her head. Her hands are clasped behind her head. Mariah Carey’s eyes are slightly open. Her head is slightly turned to the left so you can focus on the right side of her face. Her hair is flowing in front of her shoulders. There are shooting stars in the sky. The background cover has a gold hue to match the beaded bathing suit.
Photographer Thomas Whiteside took an astonishing picture of Mariah Carey during a sunset. This picture will take your breath away. She is being alluring without being revealing. He made her look beautiful in the picture. In addition to making her look beautiful, he created a relaxing background shot. It makes you want to go to the beach with her. Thomas Whiteside has worked with Demi Moore, Jessica Biel, Lily Collins, Zendaya, Rita Ora, Cara Delevingne, Emilia Clarke, as well as others. Me. I Am Mariah…The Elusive Chanteuse was released in May 2014. The album peaked at number one on the r&b charts and number three on Billboard 200. Me. I Am Mariah…The Elusive Chanteuse features the singles “Beautiful,” “The Art of Letting Go,” “You’re Mine (Eternal)” and “You Don’t Know What to Do.”
# 4 – The Emancipation of Mimi
The Emancipation of Mimi is Mariah Carey’s 10th studio album. This album is Mariah Carey’s declaration of her independence from her personal and professional life. The intimate album cover features Mariah Carey in a sexy gold dress and high-heeled shoes. Her hair is cascading in the wind. She has one arm up by her head while the other is by her waist. She is standing in front of a black background. Mariah Carey looks like Beyonce in the picture. The picture focuses on the length of her legs and makes her look taller. The letters match the color of her dress. The black and gold colors blend nicely together. Mariah Carey’s presence on the cover helps it stand out.
Photographers Markus Klinko and Indrani created a stunning look for Mariah Carey. They don’t showcase her being too revealing. She is showing a lot without showing too much. They have her leave some things to the imagination. Markus Klinko and Indrani do album covers, fashion campaigns and magazines as well as pictures of celebrities. They have worked with Mariah Carey, David Bowie, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Kelis, The Black Eyed Peas, Rachel Stevens, Britney Spears, David Guetta, Mary J. Blige, Monica, Ciara, Lindsay Lohan, as well as others. The Emancipation of Mimi was released in April 2005. The album peaked at number one on Billboard 200. The Emancipation of Mimi features the singles “It’s Like That,” “We Belong Together,” “Shake It Off,” “Get Your Number,” “Fly Like a Bird” and “Say Somethin’.” The album sold over 10 million copies.
# 3 – Emotions
Our next pick is Emotions. Emotions is Mariah Carey’s second studio album. She had more control over this album. She wanted to incorporate more r&b and gospel into her music. This is another black and white photo. The dreamy album cover features Mariah Carey wearing a white dress. She is leaning over while touching her legs in the picture. She has tight curls in her hair. Her hair is blown up as if she is in a windstorm. You can see the dark and gloomy clouds behind her. She appears to be in a desert. She looks oblivious to the storm that is brewing behind her. You can see a shot of her teeth.
Mariah Carey looks emotional on the album cover which Phillip Dixon captured wonderfully. He was able to capture the emotion of the picture effortlessly. He created an image that will have people talking and make you wonder what is going on. He makes her come alive in the picture. He uses a shadow on her body while her face is in the light. He uses golden hues throughout the picture. Phillip Dixon is a world renown photographer who has worked with Mariah Carey, Blondie, Randy Crawford, Deniece Williams, Rita Coolidge, Berlin, Sheena Easton, Rod Stewart, Roy Orbison, as well as others. Emotions was released in September 1991. The album peaked at number four on Billboard 200. Emotions features the singles “Emotions,” “Can’t Let Go” and “Make It Happen.” The album sold over eight million copies.
# 2 – Glitter Soundtrack
Glitter is Mariah Carey’s eighth studio album as well as the soundtrack to the movie of the same name. Mariah Carey wanted to create an 80s style for this album. She wanted the viewers to connect with the movie. The glittery album cover features Mariah Carey standing in front of buildings. This is one of the only album covers that features scenery in the background. Most of her album covers feature her in the picture by herself without the use of any scenery. Mariah Carey is wearing a white top with one shoulder strap. Her hair is windblown and off to the side. The photo is taken from her right side. Mariah Carey has a 100-watt smile on her face. Her jewelry is sparkling.
George Holz did an amazing job with the album cover. He did a fantastic job incorporating glitter throughout the album cover. He photoshopped her in a busy street. The lights used in the street make it appear as if cars are driving past her. He used a blend of purple and gold for the album cover. He focused on her smile which makes it impossible to take your eyes off when you are looking at the cover. This may not be one of her best-selling albums, but the cover is visually appealing. George Holz is a photographer who has worked with Mariah Carey, The Motels, Nicolette Larson, Johnnie Taylor, The Whispers, Rod Stewart, Eddie Money, Madonna, Randy Meisner, The Cars, The Isley Brothers, Chaka Khan, as well as others. Glitter was released in August 2001. The album peaked at number seven on Billboard 200. Glitter features the singles “Loverboy,” “Never Too Far,” “Don’t Stop (Funkin’ 4 Jamaica)” and “Reflections (Care Enough).” The album sold over two million copies.
# 1 – Mariah Carey
The number one pick on our Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers list is her eponymous album. Mariah Carey is her debut album. This is the album that helped launch Mariah Carey’s career. The stunning album cover is flawless. It features a fresh-faced Mariah Carey. It is a portrait of the superstar. Her hair is curly. She has strands of hair on her face. She is wearing black straps on her shoulders. She has an innocent look on her face as if she didn’t know what kind of superstar she was about to become. Kip Meyer took the photo from her right side the way most of her shots look. She is standing in front of a black background.
Kip Meyer captured a magnificent image of the up-and-coming singer. He was wise not to overload the picture with imagery. He let Mariah Carey’s mesmerizing looks tell the story of the album cover. Her skin tone and white letters bring out some of the darkness in the picture. There isn’t much going on in the picture, but it doesn’t need to be busy. The understated photo makes a statement. Kip Meyer is a photographer who is known in New York and London. He has taken 100s of pictures for fashion magazines. He has taken pictures of Mariah Carey, Oprah Winfrey, Cameron Diaz, Toni Braxton, Halle Berry, Shirley Murdock, Jevetta Steele, Penny Ford, Wynton Marsalis, as well as others. Mariah Carey was released in June 1990. The album peaked at number one on Billboard 200. Mariah Carey features the singles “Vision of Love,” “Love Takes Time,” “Someday,” “I Don’t Wann Cry” and “There’s Got to Be a Way.” The album sold over 15 million copies.
Top 10 Mariah Carey Album Covers article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023
Classicrockhistory.com claims ownership of all its original content and Intellectual property under United States Copyright laws and those of all other foreign countries. No one person, business, or organization is allowed to re-publish any of our original content anywhere on the web or in print without our permission. All photos used are either public domain creative commons photos or licensed officially from Shutterstock under license with ClassicRockHistory.com. All photo credits have been placed at the end of the article. Album Cover Photos are affiliate links and the property of Amazon and are stored on the Amazon server. Any theft of our content will be met with swift legal action against the infringing websites.