We’re all afraid of something. Yes, sure, it’s no longer the monsters under the bed (or in our closet), but whether it’s heights, enclosed spaces, spiders and other insects, animals, flying, elevators, or even the dark, something out in this big, scary world gives us the heebie-jeebies. It’s okay to admit it. It really is. It doesn’t make you any less brave or tough.
Besides, you’ll feel far better about your phobia when you hear what some of the biggest celebrities in Hollywood fear. No, it’s not becoming irrelevant or waking up to a drained bank account (although we’re sure those are very realistic and recurring anxieties), but rather some of the strangest phobias that you’ve ever heard of. If you can get through your day without getting nervous around plants or mirrors, then you’ve already got some of these celebrities beat.
If you’ve always thought that celebs were a quirky bunch, your suspicions are about to be confirmed in a huge way.
10. Kylie Minogue – Hangers
No, pop sensation Kylie Minogue didn’t watch Mommy Dearest one too many times. It’s not just wire hangers that she fears, but all of them. Wooden, plastic, whatever you’ve got in your closet, she wants nothing to do with them. As reported in 2010, when the “Can’t Get You Out of My Head” singer spoke to ELLE Magazine, she confessed to her bizarre fear.
“The problem is I hate putting things on hangers. I have a hanger phobia — I don’t like the way they sound when you put them in the wardrobe,” she said. What does she do when it comes time to put her clothes away? Of course she has special accommodations, like her own oversized wardrobe. “It’s a room in my home where everything is laid out. It never looks like other people’s wardrobes,” she explained.
9. Adele – Seagulls
To some, seagulls are the animal equivalent of summertime, the kind of birds that you only see when at the beach. Maybe those people don’t mind the gulls pecking around in the sand, but the rest of us know that nothing is more annoying than trying to kick back and enjoy a snack on the beach and having a few seagulls poop your party as they steal a bite or two.
Adele sympathizes. “I was walking down the promenade in Tenby eating [an ice cream], when this huge f*****g seagull came down and swiped it off me…I thought it was going to take me away with it,” the “Hello” singer recounted to Now Magazine in 2008 of this traumatic incident that happened when she was just nine years old.
8. Diddy – Toes
Some people are totally turned on by feet (we’re talking sexually), some think they’re totally nasty, and others just treat them like the body parts they are. As for rap superstar Diddy, he falls into the middle category, but maybe more vehemently than most. He probably could have gotten away with keeping his fears to himself had he not been booked on the same episode of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno with actor Kate Beckinsale back in 2008.
During the late night talk show segment, Diddy kept his gaze mostly averted from the stunning Beckinsale, but it wasn’t because he was trying to be polite. Instead, he didn’t want to see her toes. When Leno asked what was up, Diddy had little choice but to come clean. “I have this foot thing. I really fear a long second toe,” he said, continuing: “I somehow get to see the toe on the first date — it’s mandatory. I may not go for a kiss, but I’m definitely going to see if that second toe is long.”
7. Nicole Kidman – Butterflies
Butterflies are beautiful, majestic creatures that are one of the perks of springtime. Right? Not according to Nicole Kidman, they’re not. Caterpillars are okay in her book (at least she didn’t talk about them specifically), but butterflies? They’re a big no-no. In case you think that this is just a side effect of too much fame — just look how cute butterflies are! — Kidman actually admits that she’s been afraid of the insect since she was a little girl.
“Sometimes when I would come home from school the biggest butterfly or moth you’ve ever seen would be just sitting on our front gate. I would climb over the fence, crawl around to the side of the house — anything to avoid having to go through the front gate,” the Aussie admitted. “I have tried to get over it. I walked into the big butterfly cage at the American Museum of Natural History and had butterflies on me, but that didn’t work.” Hey, at least she tried.
6. Oprah Winfrey – Chewing Gum
What’s the worst that can happen with chewing gum? Maybe on the schoolyard when you were a kid, there was the possibility that someone would stick it in your hair (or vice-versa), but otherwise, millions of people chew gum every day without incident. Oprah Winfrey, talk show host and media mogul, will never be among those masses.
In fact, she despises chewing gum so much that she will ban anyone from having it in her vicinity. “Do you know why I have a whole thing about gum? In Mississippi, my grandmother used to chew gum, then stick it in the cabinet. There were rows and rows of Juicy Fruit and Spearmint,” she explained (probably with a shudder) in her own magazine in an interview with Jamie Foxx.
5. Cameron Diaz – Doorknobs
Listen, we can understand why doorknobs make some people uncomfortable. After all, they’re typically a hub for germs and bacteria if they’re located in a public place. However, it’s hard to think of anyone who would say that they’re afraid of doorknobs, per se. Well, except for Cameron Diaz.
According to various reports around Hollywood, the Annie actor will not even touch a doorknob. She just outright will not do it. If you’re wondering how she gets to and from her movie sets or, well, anywhere, we’re not quite sure, but more than likely, she hired someone who will open all doors for her wherever she goes.
4. Pamela Anderson – Mirrors
When it comes to a celebrity disliking their reflection, you wouldn’t think that Pamela Anderson would be one of those people. The ex-Playboy bunny likely has what’s called eisoptrophobia, which is when a person is afraid of seeing themselves in any way. Anderson fits the bill because her fear doesn’t just apply to her reflection.
While you may have watched Baywatch religiously, Anderson has not. She actually can’t stand to see herself in her own movies and television appearances. While some actors are just shy or weird about watching themselves on the big screen, Anderson’s anxieties seem to run far deeper than that.
3. Nicki Minaj – Escalators
The fear of elevators is a relatively common one, especially for those people unlucky enough to have claustrophobia. What do you do if you hate an elevator though? Take the stairs or, if you’re lucky, hitch a ride on an escalator. Just don’t count on ever bumping into rap star Nicki Minaj while you’re there.
Look, we get it. Escalators can be anxiety-inducing. You have to step on just right to avoid tripping yourself up and you have to jump off at just the correct time so your shoelaces don’t get stuck. The “Anaconda” singer must have some of the same concerns. Back in 2011, she could have been late starting her own show because the Los Angeles arena in which she was playing required an escalator trip to the stage. Of course though, she found an alternate route.
2. Christina Ricci – House Plants
House plants can actually benefit your health. They let you heal faster from surgery, illness, or injury. They can cut volatile organic compounds that you’re breathing in without knowing it, and even better, they make it easier to breathe. With so much water vapor produced through photosynthesis, they also allow for better humidity in the house so there’s no more dry, scratchy air. Christina Ricci isn’t convinced though.
The Casper actor apparently despises how unclean the greenery is. “They are dirty, if I have to touch one, after already being repulsed by the fact that there is a plant indoors, then it just freaks me out.” We’re sure that there are never any plants in Ricci’s dressing rooms when she’s on set.
1. Megan Fox – Paper
No matter your job, chances are that you deal with paper at least at some point during your day. Even if you’re a student, you’re toting around printouts, notebooks, and binders full of paper. We’re not sure how Megan Fox ever survived her adolescence, because apparently the Transformers leading lady is supremely uncomfortable around paper.
“…I just can’t stand it. Scripts, newspaper or anything that’s not laminated, I can’t touch it with my hands! I have to constantly lick my fingers before I turn every page or on my really crazy days, like if I’m sitting down to read a script, I’ll have a little cup of water and I’ll dip my fingers in it before I turn every page,” she said. Okay then.