Celebrities are known for shocking displays of extravagance and excessive conspicuous consumption, which is often literal. The recovered—or more generous, “recovering”—alcoholic, is an all-too familiar trope, but these celebrities are not just sober now; they never experimented at all. Some are especially conscious of their health, some have direct personal experience among alcoholics, and some simply have no taste for it. Call them teetotallers, anti-sommeliers, or simply abstinent actors and actresses, all of these celebrities avoid alcohol for reasons dictated by things other than 12-step programs.
These celebrities are interested in everything from fashion, to cooking, to gay rights, to advocacy, but one thing they do not spend their time doing is drinking. It’s nice to know that those among us who would rather have a good cup of coffee or a French pastry, more so than a cocktail to know that there are counterparts in Hollywood. In fact, some of these celeb accomplishments suggest a remarkable hypothesis that alcohol isn’t much of a recipe for success. While “gin joints” truly have their place in cinema, (such as life), these 15 icons prove that it’s not a necessary condition for romance or entertainment.
15. Jennifer Lopez
If you know what Jennifer Lopez’s abs looks like, you might not be surprised to learn that she tops our list. She told USWeekly that she doesn’t “drink or smoke or have caffeine.” First an actress, then a singer, then entrepreneur, J-Lo says that she tries to sleep 10 hours a night, and has two personal trainers. She’s had three husbands (not including, famously, Ben Affleck), and is the executive producer of her own NBC television show Shades of Blue, in which she plays a lead character. She has been dancing since childhood, and though the big screen was kind to Lopez, her commitment to fitness and creative dance is an abiding one, remaining indifferent to alcohol and drugs.
14. Blake Lively
Better known by her stage-name moniker Gossip Girl, Blake Lively has never been one for drinking alcohol. In a press piece from 2013 in the UK’s Daily Mail, Lively was followed as a cooking star in a new celebrity cooking show, Elletta’s Goodness, on Vogue’s new channel.
She says that she cooks with alcohol, though she doesn’t drink it. Lively’s been acting since she was 10, and achieved success in movies, too. She’s been in both (pairs of?) Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (that is, its sequel), as well as 2011’s Green Lantern – a sci-fi action film featuring the aforementioned Affleck. Hopefully this precocious celebrity homemaker remains responsible and mature; she and celebrity spouse Ryan Reynolds announced in April that they are expecting their second child.
13. Natalie Portman
Technically, alcohol has passed Natalie Portman’s lips, she admitted to Ranker that she “got drunk in college” so her position on this list is, admittedly, debatable; however, this 34-year-old film star has customarily abstained from alcohol in her adult life. Since her famous work in Star Wars: Episode III-Revenge of the Sith (2005), V for Vendetta (2006), and The Other Bolelyn Girl, she earned her first Academy Award for her role in 2010’s Black Swan. She’s also been the youngest judge on the jury for the Cannes Film Festival, and skipped the premier of Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace to study for her exams. She’s also vegan, so the wine and cheese are certainly not what is motivating her plans with husband Benjamin Millepied to move to Paris.
12. Tyra Banks
This fashion icon hasn’t tasted alcohol since age 12, making Portman seem like a lush. Sports Illustrated made her famous, when she was the first Black woman to grace the cover of their swimsuit issue in 1996. She quickly moved up the ranks in the film industry from appearing on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air to starting her own production company “Bankable Productions,” to which The Tyra Banks Show and America’s Next Top Model are accredited. To this day, Banks remains one of the most popular and successful models of all time.
11. Kim Kardashian
Perhaps most surprising person on our list is Kim Kardashian. Not so surprising, however, is that frequent drinking bouts and raucousness is common among the other Kardashian sisters, to whom Kim is the moral compass. Though this reality-TV star had more husbands than most people have cocktails, according to People magazine, Kardashian is the well-behaved one in her family. With five siblings, and her own series of workout videos (Fit in Your Jeans by Friday) video games (Kim Kardashian: Hollywood), and fashion lines, if she remains sober and prudent, her estimated net worth of over $45 million should be in good hands.
10. Kate Beckinsale
Kate Beckinsale looks so good as the 42-year-old mother of a 16-year-old daughter, not drinking alcohol and in part, taking her make-up off at night. Her looks and talent earned her the attention of her partner and co-star Michael Sheen (with whom she appeared in a stage production of Checkhov’s The Seagull). Later, her looks attracted the professional and personal notice of director Len Wiseman, who cast both her and Sheen in the 2003 Gothic film Underworld. She and Wiseman married for 11 years, but have announced plans for divorce, which is likely to rouse the media more than compromise Beckinsale’s sober poise.
9. Gillian Jacobs
Gillian Jacobs is living proof that sober people can be as funny as drunk people. Jacbos made her acting debut in the 2006 NBC television series, The Book of Daniel, and became an icon for comedy in the still-running NBC/Yahoo! Screen series Community, and the Netflix original series, Love. Though she has stated publicly that she has never tried alcohol, in her role as Love‘s Mickey Dobbs, she habitually wakes up in a hungover state, which she cures with fast food and pot. Though her late grandfather John Magenau was President and CEO of a Pennsylvania brewery, he would probably still be quite proud of his granddaughter’s accomplishments.
8. Bruce Lee
This legendary martial arts instructor and actor was so abstemious that he patented his own sort of diet that was ahead of its time. He was gluten-free way before it was trendy, avoiding baked goods and flour. This allowed him to maintain his body of steel until his premature death at age 32, owing to cerebral swelling caused by sensitivity to a muscle-relaxant. During his short life, he stared in five full-length films and developed his own martial arts style Jeet Kune Do, embracing, in Lee’s own words, “the direct expression of one’s feelings with the minimum of movements and energy.” Time Magazine remarked on the irony that, in 2012, his image was used in a Johnny Walker ad campaign.
7. Tilda Swinton
While a less familiar name than Kim K, British actress Tilda Swinton has been in some fantastic films, such as Cameron Crowe‘s Vanilla Sky, Judd Apatow’s Trainwreck, and, more recently, this year’s Hail, Caesar from the Coen Brothers. Her filmography is extensive, including work with award-winning directors David Fincher (of Zodiac fame), and Wes Anderson, who brought us The Royal Tenenbaums and Grand Budapest Hotel.
Ironically, Swinton was cast to play an alcoholic in the 2008 French crime drama, Julia, directed by Erick Zonca. According to a press piece in Reuters, Tilda Swinton says that “drinking just makes her sleepy or sick.” Swinton finds inspiration from friends who have struggled with alcoholism, which brings a richness and depth to her performance.
6. Dane Cook
This Massachusetts-based comedian is famous for lines like, “you gotta work on those tan likes girl. Your boobs look like two scoops of vanilla ice cream.” In Dane Cook‘s case, these caustic jibes can’t be attributed to alcohol. He is less famous for lines like, “I am focused on staying as healthy as I can so I can work more.” Despite his hallmark offensiveness, this stand-up celebrity has a personal life that is unassailable. He stated that that he doesn’t drink or do drugs. Which, if she can can forgive the constant scathing remarks, makes him a great catch for any lucky lady.
5. Susan Boyle
As proved by her 2009 debut in the Britain’s Got Talent TV program, Susan Boyle lays claim to some of Britain’s top talent, but doesn’t care for the characteristic Scotch whiskey.
She suffered an emotional meltdown after losing on the show, and was admitted to a rehabilitation hospital, though not for drug or alcohol use. In 2012, she was diagnosed with Asberger’s syndrome. Despite these setbacks, her talent remained unfledged; she received two Grammy nominations in 2013. Finally, the 55-year-old singer is reported by People magazine to having her first boyfriend in 2014.
4. Eliza Dushku
This American actress was made famous by Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and since having given us teen-comedy classics like Bring It On (2000), Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001), and The New Guy (2002), she was markedly sober, even (ironically) during the premier of her 2008 comedy drama Bottle Shock. Dushku was raised by a Mormon and claims she doesn’t drink, and that she has ADHD. Coupled with the fact that she is still playing major roles in the Cinemax series Banshee, and the upcoming not-yet-released American thriller Eloise, she has plenty to entertain her without alcohol.
3. Jennifer Hudson
This Academy Award-winning actress and singer rose to prominence in 2004 as a contestant on American Idol in its heyday. Since then, she has appeared in the 2006 film Dreamgirls (which earned her a Golden Globe award) and alongside Sarah Jessica Parker in Sex and the City. Her self-titled album, Jennifer Hudson, released in 2008, earned her a Grammy, and she preserves her award-winning voice by avoiding drinking altogether. According to the Huffington Post, Hudson explains that she’s “never been interested in drugs or alcohol.” Though she’s a far cry from a real-life alcoholic she played in the 2013 drama The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete, she can certainly nail the role on television.
2. Steve Jobs
According to MoneyWeb, Jobs didn’t drink alcohol or smoke. Famous during his lifetime as the CEO of Apple, he also served as CEO to Pixar and sat on the board of directors for Disney. After his death in 2011, he was immortalized by biographer Walter Isaacson, whose book Jobs, details Jobs’ revolutionizing of computer products and digital publications. It is true that the FBI posthumously reported that he was guilty of LSD and drug use in college, but we must never speak ill of the dead (especially if they invented iPhones).
1. Kathy Griffin
Talk show host and Emmy Award-winning comedian Kathy Griffin understandably avoids depressants like alcohol. In fact, she has admitted that, while she doesn’t drink alcohol, “the more caffeine the better.” This Illinois native has done stand-up comedy and starred in her own reality television show, Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List, which ran for six seasons on E! She’s been married once, and her string of relationships after her marriage included a stint with Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak (yes, this makes her only once removed from Steve Jobs). Currently, she is an LGBT activist, and has made guest appearances on several popular programs, including Big Brother and America’s Next Top Model, which, as we know, was created by Tyra Banks. Oddly enough, despite their shared affinity for teetotalism, Banks allegedly punched Griffin–and she wasn’t even drunk!
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