After making her acting debut in the 1992 romance Bekhudi, Kajol had her first commercial success with the 1993 thriller Baazigar.
She rose to prominence by featuring as the female lead in several top-grossing romances, including Yeh Dillagi (1994), Ishq (1997), Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya (1998), Pyaar To Hona Hi Tha (1998) and Hum Aapke Dil Mein Rehte Hain (1999)—and received critical recognition for playing against type in the 1997 mystery film Gupt: The Hidden Truth, that earned her a Filmfare Award for Best Villain, and the 1998 psychological thriller Dushman.
She has featured as a talent judge for Zee TV's reality show Rock-N-Roll Family and holds a managerial position at Devgn Entertainment and Software Ltd.
She subsequently starred in and earned public recognition with Yash Raj Films's hit romantic drama Yeh Dillagi, alongside Akshay Kumar and Saif Ali Khan.
In that same year's retrospective review by Rediff, Raja Sen stated that Kajol was "wisely picked ...
to play Simran, the real-as-life actress bringing warmth and credulity to the initially prudish and reluctant Simran.
Kajol played Radhika, a girl who falls in love with Sadanah's character despite her parents' wish for her to marry another man.
Although the film turned out to be a box office flop, Kajol's performance was noticed and she was signed for Baazigar (1993), a thriller by Abbas-Mustan, which emerged as a major commercial success.