There’s no denying that the celebrity lifestyle comes with a lot of perks – the adoring fans, the exotic holidays and entry to the most glamorous parties across the world.
But not everything that glitters is gold, and there is little doubt that fame comes with a dark side. Some people find the life of the rich and successful too overwhelming to handle, with reporters stalking their every move and their lives subject to constant gossip and speculation. It’s no wonder that so many of our favourite celebrities seem to turn to drinking, drugs or bad habits in order to cope with the pressure of being in the spotlight.
These celebrities have shown however, that there is a way back to healthy living following addiction. Whether they’ve been sober for ten years or twelve months, these celebs are proudly celebrating how far they’ve come and proving that with determination and commitment, it is possible to succeed.
He’s the blue-eyed heartthrob that first captured the hearts of millions of teenage girls around the world when he rose to fame playing Troy Bolton in “High School Musical”. Catapulted to what seemed like overnight global success, Efron found the sudden transition from unknown to superstar difficult to deal with.
Zac found that his anxiety was triggered as he was constantly snapped by paparazzi and could never find a moment’s peace. He sought therapy for drugs and alcohol abuse back in 2013 and reports indicate that he is keeping himself clean so far. The actor attended meetings to talk through his problems and continues to avoid alcohol.
Efron is realistic about his struggles and told reporters ‘it’s a never ending struggle.’
His acting career has gone from strength to strength over the past few years, and with a series of blockbuster hits like ‘Baywatch’ and ‘The Greatest Showman’ under his belt it looks as though sobriety clearly agrees with him.
When a clean-cut 11 year-old Daniel Radcliffe made his debut as the world’s most famous wizard, nobody suspected that a few years later he would be suffering from an addiction to alcohol. Playing Harry Potter in the movie franchise, made Radcliffe one of the most famous child actors of all time, something that changed his life forever. Daniel admitted that he used to turn up to work drunk in order to help him get over his nerves and that his addiction steadily got worse.
Radcliffe also commented that, to this day, he recognizes the scenes in “Harry Potter” where he was still drunk from the night before. Fortunately he saw the error of his ways and realised that if he wanted to continue acting, he needed to clean up.
Daniel stopped drinking in 2010 meaning that he’ll be able to celebrate 10 years sober in just another year’s time. Hopefully he’ll stick to sparkling water for the celebrations.
Robert Downey Jr.
The undisputed King of the Marvel universe has never shied away from discussing his wild child past, and is well known for his history of alcohol and drug abuse. Robert rose to fame at the tender age of 5 years old and had starred in numerous movies throughout the eighties.
Robert fully embraced the celebrity party scene, often getting into trouble with the law, and was even arrested for possession of cocaine back in 2000, during a break from filming TV drama ‘Ally McBeal’.
Despite his years of hardcore living, Robert finally managed to get sober in 2003 and cites his wife as being one of the people who helped him on his path to sobriety. Since his career comeback, Downey Jr. has become renowned for playing Iron Man, earning himself a whole generation of new fans to whom he advocates choosing meditation, yoga and martial arts over drugs and alcohol.
Fans have been left worried for singer Demi Lovato’s mental health and stability on more than one occasion. The American superstar has been open about her struggles with sobriety and has checked herself into rehab several times.
Lovato attends both Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings in order to help her keep her addictions in check. The ‘Skyscraper’ singer managed to stay sober for six years before suffering a relapse in 2018, something that she also shared with her fans. It took a lot of strength and courage for Demi to climb back on the sober bandwagon, but so far she seems to be staying on the straight and narrow.
When asked about her recent relapse, Lovato admitted that sobriety isn’t easy and advised fans who need help to keep going and never doubt that they can recover from setbacks and mistakes.
Given his reputation for playing drug-addicted frat boy types, and his mischievous personality, you would be forgiven for thinking that actor James Franco is one of the bad boys of the Hollywood scene. In contrast to his characters however, Franco has been sober for some time.
After a brief stint as a teenage tearaway – Franco was arrested for shoplifting and underage drinking – he decided to get clean and stay away from alcohol. Franco suffers from depression and was never comfortable with fame. The actor who is known for movies like ‘Pineapple Express’ and ‘Spider Man’ says he stays away from drugs because he doesn’t want them to affect his mind.
It isn’t clear exactly when Franco became sober, but reports show that he has been clean since at least 2014, meaning he is able to maintain a healthy lifestyle even amidst the temptations of the celebrity scene. Franco was cited as saying that moving away from his addictions was ‘a new chapter in his life’.
As one of the world’s most successful DJs and the creator of hits like ‘This Is What You Came Here For’ and ‘One Kiss’, Calvin Harris has toured the globe playing at the most exclusive parties and venues on offer.
Harris found himself getting caught up in the party lifestyle, indulging in alcohol and an unhealthy diet that left him with heart problems. The DJ admitted that during this time he suffered from arrhythmia, meaning his heart rate would speed up and slow down dangerously. Calvin also admitted that he would drink up to two bottles of Jack Daniels per night and live off junk food. He also told fans that he was worried his performances were not at their best.
The hit maker has now been sober for five years and continues to enjoy worldwide success. Harris says he has no intention of going back to his old lifestyle and says that ‘those days are behind me now.’
With Ozzy Osbourne for a father it comes as no surprise that Kelly Osbourne, the youngest daughter of the infamous rocker, has experienced her fair share of the rock and roll lifestyle. Kelly, who was always outspoken, first talked about her problems with addiction as a teenager, when she admitted to having a problem with pills at the age of 16.
Despite her troubled past, Kelly went on to have a successful career on television and even released a duet with her father and appeared on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ to high praise. The past has continued to haunt Osbourne and she has suffered from relapses – Kelly has been in and out of rehab at least three times.
In 2018 however she was able to celebrate twelve months of being sober, something which she attributed to the support of her family and particularly, her brother Jack who helped her get back on track. Kelly celebrated with a Twitter post, thanking her friends for supporting her on her journey.
He’s recently been seen playing the monstrous purple villain Thanos in ‘Avengers: End Game’ and grappling with Ryan Reynolds in ‘Dead Pool 2’ as Cable, but action star Josh Brolin was living a very different lifestyle just a few years ago.
The 51 year-old actor made the decision to quit smoking and alcohol just over five years ago (Brolin celebrated half a decade sober in January of this year) and hasn’t looked back since. He has however, been known to share drunken photos of himself on social media in order to show just how far he has come.
Brolin says he made the decision to get sober after realising he did not like himself when drunk, nor the fact that he often needed to ask friends what had happened during nights of excessive partying.
It’s no secret that comedian and writer Russell Brand has a highly addictive personality. There isn’t much that the 44 year-old ‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall’ star hasn’t tried in his time, with addictions to drugs, alcohol, food and sex almost taking over his life at one point.
Whether you love him or hate him, there’s no denying that the controversial celebrity has turned his life around. Brand has reportedly been sober for almost seventeen years and it seems that these days he chooses to live a healthy, organic, holistic lifestyle.
Brand has admitted to using the highly addictive drug Heroin at his lowest point, something which he used at a time when he was ‘eggshell fragile’. Fortunately Russell was able to get support from a 12-step treatment centre and attended therapy to help him work through his issues.
Brand also uses his story to help others who suffer from similar addictions, supporting other drug users’ recoveries by sponsoring them through treatment.
Kat Von D
As of 2019, American reality star Kat Von D will be celebrating 12 years of sobriety. The dark haired beauty decided to quit alcohol when it became obvious that her drinking was getting in the way of her tattooing career.
Kat has been open about her journey, speaking out on social media and television about the dangers of overindulging in booze. Kat has spoken about how she had to cut friends out of her life and move away from the party scene in order to focus on her career, something that has gone from strength to strength with the former TV star going on to launch her own successful makeup line.
Kat hopes to inspire others to live a healthier, booze-free, lifestyle and regularly says that going sober was one of the best decisions she ever made.
Unlike the other celebrities on this list, the 31 year-old actress, and wife of Ryan Reynolds, has never suffered from an addiction to alcohol. Quite the opposite in fact, as Blake doesn’t drink and is reported to be teetotal. It is not clear whether or not Blake has ever drank, but she certainly prefers to stick to water and says that she doesn’t like the taste of booze.
The star of the hit movie ‘The Shallows’ is a self-confessed foodie and prefers to indulge in good food over hard liquor, admitting to reporters that unlike other celebrities she has never tried drugs.
With a great sense of humour and looks to die for, it seems that Blake doesn’t need to indulge in glasses of champagne to enjoy her success. Let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want to go for a girls’ night out and a few mocktails with Blake?
You don’t get much more glamorous or outrageous than the ever popular star of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ the inimitable RuPaul – drag queen extraordinaire and the owner of the fiercest wardrobe in the world. What you might not know is that beneath the sequins and the glitter, 58 year-old RuPaul Charles has been sober for two decades. Charles decided to quit smoking marijuana in 1999, following a few previous attempts to cut out his habit.
The Emmy award winner, who has been described as ‘America’s most successful drag Queen’ used to smoke regularly, but made attempts to quit after meeting husband Georges LeBar in 1994. and before resurging on the drag scene as the host of the popular reality game show which ran from 2008.
RuPaul remains an iconic figure and still looks fantastic approaching sixty, proving that the right attitude to life and addiction can help you overcome anything. He has no regrets about going sober.