March 21, 2023

Cara Delevingne’s Struggle with Addiction

Cara Delevingne has disclosed that she is now four months sober, sharing that "sometimes you need a reality check." Here's how celebrities being open about recovery can help end stigma.

Cara Develeninge addiction

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Susana Spiegel

Recovery Writer and Advocate

Last Update on June 5, 2023

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In a recent publication with Vogue1, Cara Develeninge shared that she is 4 months sober following realizing that she needed to get help for addiction. Cara is a prime example of the reality of addiction among celebrities. In this article, we explore Cara’s thoughts on her own recovery and hope to provide useful insight into the contributing factors of drug and alcohol use among celebrities.

Searching for help with drug and/or alcohol addiction? Call us now at (888) 201-4610.

Cara Delevingne’s Reality Check

Cara Delevingne has disclosed that she is now four months sober, sharing that “sometimes you need a reality check.”

The 30-year-old British model and actress spoke with Vogue about her struggles with addiction and depression, stating, “This process obviously has its ups and downs.”

“People want my story to be this after-school special where I just say, ‘Oh look, I was an addict, and now I’m sober and that’s it.’ And it’s not as simple as that. It doesn’t happen overnight … Of course, I want things to be instant — I think this generation especially, we want things to happen quickly — but I’ve had to dig deeper.”

Delevingne entered rehab late last year, prompted in part by paparazzi photos taken at the Van Nuys Airport in Los Angeles in September. The images,2 which captured her looking disheveled, served as a source of immense shame and a wake-up call.

“I hadn’t slept,” she recollected, adding that she had just returned from Burning Man after a summer of intense partying and was on her way to a work commitment.

“It’s heartbreaking because I thought I was having fun, but at some point, it was like, Okay, I don’t look well.”

“You know, sometimes you need a reality check, so in a way, those pictures were something to be grateful for,” she said. Delevingne explained that the media attention “makes the whole cycle worse for people going through it.”

Contributing Factors to Cara’s Addiction

Dealing with depression exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, the loss of her grandmother, a lifelong battle with addiction, and grappling with her identity while filming “Planet Sex” led Delevingne to seek support and therapy.

Following the release of the photos, she embraced the 12-step program and found a sense of connection within the community.

Delevingne spent a sober Christmas and New Year with her girlfriend, Leah Mason, and has integrated meditation and movement into her daily yoga routine. “I still have a lot of energy,” she said, “but it’s not erratic. I’m calmer. I’m stiller.”

Sharing her story on Instagram, Delevingne wrote: “Every single story is important, and this is mine. We are all human. Of course, we will fall and make mistakes. We will walk through really hard things in life, but it’s how we get back up again.” She encouraged those still struggling, “Don’t give up, you are not alone.”


Substance Use and Celebrity Lifestyle

Hollywood has often been associated with a culture of excess, where drugs and alcohol are readily available and even glamorized. This normalization of substance use can create an environment where celebrities may feel that indulging in drugs or alcohol is an accepted part of their lifestyle.

Furthermore, some films, television shows, like Euphoria, and music lyrics glamorize drug use or portray it as an integral part of the creative process, which can send a dangerous message to those struggling with addiction.

The impact of demanding schedules and work-related stress

The entertainment industry is notoriously demanding, with celebrities often facing grueling work schedules, relentless travel, and intense public scrutiny. 

These factors can lead to significant stress and exhaustion, which may drive individuals to turn to drugs or alcohol as a means of coping.

Additionally, the unpredictable nature of the industry can create feelings of insecurity and instability for celebrities. The pressure to maintain success and relevance can be immense, leading some to rely on substances as a way of managing their fears and anxieties.

Normalization of Recovery Among Celebrities

The reality is that throughout the past two decades, there has been a notable increase in the number of celebrities who openly discuss their recovery journeys.

 This openness is a significant shift from the past when addiction and recovery were often considered taboo topics.

Celebrities from various fields, including actors, musicians, and athletes, are now sharing their personal stories of overcoming addiction and embracing sobriety.

This trend is helping to break down the stigma associated with addiction and recovery, making it easier for others to share their own experiences and seek help.

The Positive Impact of Celebrities Being Open About Their Recovery

The openness of celebrities in discussing their recovery has had a positive impact on public perception of addiction and recovery.

By sharing their stories, these public figures are humanizing the struggles faced by those battling addiction and demonstrating that recovery is possible.

This openness helps to dispel misconceptions about addiction, such as the idea that it is a moral failing or a sign of weakness.

Instead, these stories are reframing addiction as a complex issue that can affect anyone, regardless of their background or social status.

Saying Goodbye to Stigma 

Encouraging open conversations about addiction and mental health is essential for breaking down the stigma that often surrounds these issues.

When people feel comfortable discussing their struggles, it creates an environment where others can seek help without fear of judgment or discrimination.

Celebrities who share their own experiences can play a vital role in promoting this openness and fostering a culture of understanding and support.


[1] Cara Delevingne Opens Up About Sobriety and Self-Care at 30

[2] Cara Delevingne Airport Photos

[3] Cara Delevingne Instagram

Published: 3/21/2023

Updated: 3/22/2023

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Author & Reviewers

susana spiegel recovery writer and SEO expert

Susana is a recovery writer and advocate with over 8 years in addiction recovery. She is passionate about sharing accurate and helpful information about mental health, addiction, and recovery. She holds a Bachelor’s in Christian Studies from Grand Canyon University and has over 7 years of working in the addiction field. 

lionel estrada lisac clinical director

Lionel is the Clinical Director of Cornerstone’s Scottsdale treatment facilities. He has had over 4 years at Cornerstone. He is personally in recovery and passionate about helping others overcome substance abuse and mental health challenges; he is trained as an EMDR, adopting a trauma-informed approach to treat the underlying issues.

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