Stronger Than Yesterday: 15 Celebs Who Overcame Their Addictions

January 23, 2013  |  
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In Hollywood, plenty of drug scandals have made news headlines and while many of them end in tragedy and sometimes death, there are some celebrities who have overcome their addictions to be stronger and better than they were yesterday. Any addiction is hard to break, and as a celebrity, the added stress of constantly being in the public eye can make things even harder, but these celebs managed to triumph and we salute their success!


As if a crazy past riddled with abuse and poverty wasn’t bad enough, Oprah also drug issues to contend with. During her 20s, Oprah admitted to using coke and she apparently was also a regular user during the ’80s. Today Oprah has long let go of her addiction and has become one of the most successful women in the world.


For years, Eminem was addicted to various pills and other drugs, including methadone. Em admitted to taking more than 20 pills a day, which nearly killed him. Nowadays he is no longer addicted to the drugs. His recent album, Recovery is all about making it through the dark times as well as his new start sober.


Slash is one of the most notable and recognizable rock n’ roll figures alive today. Back in the day, the guitarist was addicted to alcohol and heroin, and in 2001, he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. This diagnosis, along with the help of his wife, helped him beat his addictions.

Robert Downey Jr.

At just the age of six, Robert Downey Jr. had his first experience with marijuana and at the age of 22, he was addicted to not only weed but heroin, coke, and plenty of other drugs. He went to rehab in 2002 and has remained clean since then — thankfully!

Britney Spears

Even though Britney Spears is probably best known for her breakthrough in the pop world in her teenage years, she’s also known for her crazy breakdown. After shaving her head and hitting a car with an umbrella, Britney went to rehab for alcohol and drug abuse. She’s now a mom of two and has stayed clean.

Samuel L. Jackson

As whole as he seems, Samuel L. Jackson was addicted to heroin as well as coke a few decades ago. He’s admitted to overdosing several times but always survived. In 1991, he went to rehab and has been sober ever since. He’s now one of the most recognized — and highest paid — actors in Hollywood.

Jennifer Aniston

Looking at her now, you’d never know that for years, Jennifer Aniston was addicted to caffeine as well as cigarettes. In 2007, she underwent an intense detox to overcome her addiction. Jennifer now lives a healthier lifestyle and practices yoga to stay relaxed and fit.

Demi Lovato

Demi Lovato is one of the younger celebrities who has battled all sorts of addictions. In 2010, she went to rehab for three months to treat self-harm and emotional issues as well as to help with her heavy experimentation with alcohol and various drugs. The help of rehab and family members allowed Demi to live a healthier life.

Chaka Khan

Back when she first signed with Warner Bros., Chaka Khan started snorting heroin as well as using coke, but she says she never injected it after a warning from singer Etta James. For 10 years, though, she was addicted to the drugs as well as alcohol. Nowadays the Queen of Funk-Soul is 100% sober.

Catherine Zeta-Jones

Smoking is a hard habit to quit. Catherine Zeta-Jones had been smoking since her early teenage years and carried the habit into adulthood. When she was photographed smoking while pregnant, all of the backlash from media prompted her to quit. She didn’t want to have an unhealthy child let alone pass the habit onto the baby. So far so good.

Kid Cudi

In 2010, Kid Cudi was arrested for possession of liquid coke. At the time he was also a heavy marijuana user, which he said influenced a lot of his previous songs. As of 2011, Kid Cudi admitted to being clean from all drugs. He even got tattoos on his wrist that symbolize the death of his old drug-addicted self.

Kelly Osbourne

At just 17, Kelly Osbourne was addicted to Vicodin, sometimes taking up to 50 pills a day. She went to rehab four times but in 2009 she finally got clean for good. Kelly admits to regretting her drug choices back then and has turned her life around dramatically. She has not only beat her addiction, but also lost 50lbs.

Nicole Richie

Nicole Richie was once addicted to heroin, pills, and marijuana. She was arrested for possession of heroin in 2003 and then arrested in 2007 for being under the influence of Vicodin and marijuana. Nowadays Nicole has completely turned her life around. She’s a mom of two, married, and has become a successful entrepreneur. Shout out to House of Harlow.

Drew Barrymore

Drew Barrymore may often play the role of a good girl, but her history with drugs and alcohol has been pretty rough. At the age of nine she was smoking cigarettes and at 11 she was a heavy drinker. At the age of 12 she was smoking weed and by 13 she had become addicted to coke. Despite her rough past, Drew has been able to knock all of her habits and live a sober life.

Eric Clapton

Drugs aren’t cheap by any means, but at one point in time, Eric Clapton was forking out $16,000 a week for his heroin addiction. His addiction nearly killed him when he passed out during a performance and had to be revived. Eric eventually overcame his addiction and now runs a center for drug and alcohol addiction treatment.

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