The entertainment industry is soaked in booze. It’s also full of performers who have had to reckon with their own dangerous substance habits, alcohol or otherwise, over the years. But increasingly, it’s not just potential addiction and abuse scaring entertainers away from the bottle. Many celebrities are dropping their drinking rituals, temporarily or permanently, in order to maintain peak health.
It’s not hard to see why. Alcohol comes loaded with health risks that can shorten your lifespan, ranging from the more obvious (liver damage and high blood pressure) to the more subtly sinister (interfering with the brain’s activity, weakening the immune system, tanking testosterone levels).
Vice called 2022 the year alcohol “lost its cool,” while the pandemic nudged some to rethink their drinking, and Generation Z is embracing the sober-curious movement. Gallup found that the portion of college-aged Americans who don’t drink has increased from 20 percent to 28 percent over the last decade.
Whether you’re aiming for full-time sobriety, sober-curious, or simply craving a health-revitalizing break, Dry January has become a popular means to recover from holiday indulgences and spend a month doing, well, everything you might normally do except drinking alcohol. And celebrities have been eager to join the global phenomenon this time of year.
If you’re struggling to skip cocktail hour through the rest of the month, let these tee-total celebrities amp your motivation.
The chart-topping “First Class” rapper may be a booze-free icon to a new generation looking for alternative outlets. The 24-year-old opened up to Rolling Stone about quitting alcohol in 2021. “I’m sick of waking up with a dry throat, sick of feeling bloated, I’m sick of the decisions I make on it,” he said. “I’m in my well-oiled-machine era. Because I can see my future right in front of me. And I feel there’s so many people counting on me outside of myself.”
More cheekily, in his song “Nail Tech,” he says of his cannabis use: “And I know I gave up drinkin’, but I’m high though.”
No stranger to the damages of alcohol and drugs, Lowe, 58, told People in 2015, “Being in recovery has given me everything of value that I have in my life.”
He made a legendary turn as a hard-drinking rocker in A Star Is Born, but off the screen, Cooper has been sober for almost two decades. The 48-year-old quit drinking at age 29, worried that he was “going to sabotage my whole life.”
“I was doing these movies, and I got to meet Sandra Bullock,” the actor told GQ in 2014. “And I’m sober, and I’m like, ‘Oh, I’m actually myself. And I don’t have to put on this air to be somebody else, and this person still wants to work with me? Oh, what the f*** is that about?’”
Angelina Jolie’s filing for divorce from Pitt in 2016 led the World War Z actor to reconsider his life. The 59-year-old quit his drinking habit, taking up Alcoholics Anonymous meetings instead. “I had a really cool men’s group here that was really private and selective, so it was safe,” Pitt told GQ in 2022.
It’s fair to call the 85-year-old Oscar-winning actor a sobriety king at this point, with nearly five decades staying free of booze. In 2020, he celebrated year 45 with an inspiring video message that was widely cherished on Twitter. “Today is the tomorrow you were so worried about yesterday,” Hopkins told fans. “You young people, don’t give up.”