If you pay a modicum of attention to pop culture, you've probably heard, at least tangentially, about Shawn Mendes and Charlie Puth. Mendes is the internet star turned teen heartthrob behind 2010-era chart hits like "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" and "Treat You Better," while Puth is the wild-haired pop whiz responsible for radio staples like "Attention" and "How Long."

Let me preface this by saying there are some discernible, if marginal, differences between the two: Mendes leans more toward starry-eyed, guitar-charged crowd-pleasers, while Puth, at least as of late, has been embracing '80s funk meets R&B-style soft rock. And yet, it somehow feels impossibly difficult to tell them apart.

Both are two affluent, pretty inoffensive white dudes. Both cropped up on the music radar around the same time (Mendes with Handwritten in April 2015, Puth with Nine Track Mind roughly eight months later). And both have released new albums within the last two weeks, each with one gun control-inspired song (Mendes with "Youth," Puth with "Change") and one about the anxieties of newfound fame (Mendes' "In My Blood," Puth's "The Way I Am") that peel back to reveal their more "honest," "authentic" selves. They may not be the same person, but they are almost certainly following the same career trajectories.

So if you, like much of the greater American public, are having trouble keeping track of which one is which, read on for a few tips on telling these two incredibly similar artists apart.


  • Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
    Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

    Shawn Mendes Looks Like He Showers

    Mendes usually shows up to events coiffed and in ironed clothing; Puth sometimes looks like he rolled out of bed after stopping at Goodwill.

  • Giphy

    Charlie Puth Has That Eyebrow Thing

    The surefire way to tell apart two white dudes: Look at their eyebrows!! (For the record, it's not by choice: Puth was attacked by a dog when he was two, and has had a scar on his right brow ever since).

  • loading...

    Charlie Puth Is Allegedly a Grown Man

    Despite that Puth announces he wants lunch by saying "I'm hungies," he is, in fact, 26 years old. Mendes is only 19.

  • CBS via youtube.com
    CBS via youtube.com

    The Things Shawn Mendes Says Don't Make You Want to Scream Into the Void

    Speaking of "I'm hungies," the things that come out of Mendes' mouth hit around the marginally more tolerable "Wow! What a sick vibe!"

  • Giphy

    Charlie Puth's Face Is Rounder, Maybe?

    We're really scraping the bottom of the barrel here.

  • Nathan Congleton, NBC via Getty Images
    Nathan Congleton, NBC via Getty Images

    And He's Recently Discovered Hair Straighteners

    Mendes is still opting for a little bit more wave in his locks.

  • Pinterest

    Puth's Music Is Inspired By Sentences, Apparently

    “I speak about broad topics,” Puth recently told Vulture of Voicenotes. “I’m not really reinventing the wheel lyrically. I have, You just want attention, How long has this been going on, What have you done for me, That’s just the way I am — these are sentences that people say."

    Mendes, on the other hand, is inspired by...not sentences???

  • Giphy

    Just General Luck

    When in doubt, just guess! You have a 50/50 chance of being right.

More From Y105