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Celebrity Moms Who Smoke: From Katie Holmes to Gwyneth and J-Lo, Secret Smokers that will Shock You (Photos)

By Monica Bielanko |

Jessica Alba enjoys a cigarette while shopping in Soho with a friend.

My husband recently quit smoking after lighting up for well over half his life.

It was rough going.  So I know (second-hand) how hard it can be to kick the habit.  His main motivating factor was our children.  Our daughter, Violet, is 3 and Henry just turned 1-year-old.  Serge realized that if he quit now Violet will never remember him smoking.  Won’t necessarily even know he was a smoker unless we tell her.  It’s been three months.

My point is, I married a smoker.  So I’m not rounding up these moms who smoke in some effort to shame them.  Is pointing out someone as a smoker a mean thing to do?  I don’t think so but I don’t know.  I just find it fascinating to see how far some celebs go to maintain some sort of “clean” image to the public.  We’ve done moms who smoke lists before here on Babble, but I think a lot of the women on this list will surprise you.  There are some obvious smokers like Uma Thurman who has never really hidden the fact that she lights up and then you have secret smokers like Katie Holmes.  A photo of Suri’s mom holding a cigarette is nearly as rare as spotting Courtney Love without one.

It interests me that many of the moms you’re about to see smoke in front of their kids.  I find it fascinating that they don’t want the public seeing them smoke but they have no problem lighting up in front of the kids when for most people, my husband included, it’s the other way around.  He’d smoke in public but always hid the habit from Violet.  He absolutely never wanted her to see him smoke.

The other thing that struck me after compiling this list is that it seems like everyone smokes.  In fact, after seeing photos of Oscar winners Julia Roberts (lighting up on set with husband Danny Moder), Sandra Bullock (lighting up on set) and new mom Charlize Theron (smoking on the street) I feel compelled to create a list of 20 Moms Who Don’t Smoke. For the record Bullock and Roberts have said they quit.

So click onward and check it out:  20 celeb moms who smoke.

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20 Celebrity Moms Who Smoke (Photos)

Gwyneth Paltrow

I know! I couldn't believe it either. The woman who is so health conscious she can "feel her adrenal cortex being really high" indulges in the occasional cigarette. Paltrow told Elle magazine she'll smoke every now and again when out with her girlfriends.

All Images:

You can also find Monica Bielanko on her personal blog, The Girl Who.

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About Monica Bielanko


Monica Bielanko

Monica Bielanko was raised on the wild frontier of late 1970's Utah. She is a recovering Mormon who married the guitar player of an unknown band. She's been married to her Babble Voices writing partner, Serge Bielanko, for the past nine years. Her personal blog, The Girl Who was in the top ten of last year's Top 50 list. Read bio and latest posts → Read Monica's latest posts →

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29 thoughts on “Celebrity Moms Who Smoke: From Katie Holmes to Gwyneth and J-Lo, Secret Smokers that will Shock You (Photos)

  1. ChiLaura says:

    Isn’t calling an “out with the girls” smoker like Gwenyth Paltrow a smoker like calling an “out with the girls” drinker an alcoholic? Catherine Zeta-Jones can’t quit even though her husband has throat cancer? Now, that’s a smoking problem. Gwenyth lighting up once a month (or whatever) seems like an entirely different thing.

  2. Jo says:

    My mom recently died from lung cancer; she was 67 and she smoked for about 40 years. I read somewhere that smoking can take up to 14 years off someone’s life. I believe it. I miss my mom more than words can say and I’m mad as hell at all that her smoking has taken from my family.

  3. Kyran says:

    I’m thinking weight control (not to mention stress relief) has to be a factor here. We get so (rightfully) worked up about the negatives of smoking, that we forget or deny that nicotine is a drug with some (albeit at great cost) benefits. I almost envy the days when our mothers and grandmothers could blithely smoke and stay thin, not knowing what the cost would be in the end. (besides cancer, it is hell on your face…I can always spot a woman who has smoked a long time).

    I was a pack a day smoker through most of my teens until my late 20s. I loved it, but I got pregnant, and had kids, and that was that. I could never be an occasional smoker, and I don’t kid myself about that.

    My husband still smokes (never around our children, though we don’t make it a secret, and I talk openly though not judgmentally about how hard it has been for him to quit despite repeated attempts, how I worrying about his health, and how crazy expensive it is) hoping to discourage them from picking it up someday.

    He recently got an e-cig. I thought they were kind of silly at first, but now I think if science can find a way to deliver nicotine without all the damaging effects of tobacco, why not?

    Addiction is complicated, and shaming never helps. I like the idea of a “kinder, gentler” (but still smart) celebrity column. I’ll be following to see how it goes. :-)

  4. lydia says:

    I would have never guessed most of those. I think it’s weird, now that they’ve taken smoking out of most movies and TV shows, it *seems* like fewer people smoke, but I guess maybe that’s not the case? I also am a non-smoker, and only have one or two friends who smoke, so I think for me, since it’s not part of my world, it’s always weird to find out it’s part of someone else’s. I’m weird like that.

  5. Christina says:

    I also just lost my mom to lung cancer (less than 2 weeks ago) and she quit over 12 years ago. It is sad that smoking can destroy so many lives & I truly feel for those who are addicted because my mom said that quitting was the hardest thing she ever did.

  6. becs says:

    These actresses/models are also all unnaturally underweight for their heights. Survey says: using nicotine to squelch their appetites!

  7. Alison says:

    Yes, keeping the weight down. Also, for years and years tobacco smoking and alcoholism (also drug abuse and addiction) have been occupational hazards for actors and other entertainers. In the 50s, smoking was endorsed by celebrities in cigarette ads; but also, many movie parts required smoking. The lists of actors who have died from smoking is long (John Wayne, Donna Reed…). Addiction always includes the denial that it is really truly going to hurt you.

  8. Emilia says:

    I can’t believe Becks smokes, he’s a professional athlete for goodness sakes! His health and body are what bring him money. Crazy.

  9. Meg says:

    Oh how I would love to smoke a cig from time to time but I know better than that. I quit not just for me but to be a better influence on my daughter. It is a good stress relief. Honestly the only thing I miss about it is sitting on the back porch all by myself puffing on one and listening to the birds sing. But with that comes horrible side effects that are just not even worth it! Where I live it is illegal to smoke in your car if their are children in it so why is it not illegal for a pregnant woman? That bothers me to see a pregnant woman smoking. I quit when I found out I was pregnant and then started again almost a year after my daughter was born and now I have quit again for a year! It’s possible to quit.I am not saying it’s easy by any means…I still want one! Just do it for your health and you family!

  10. Deja says:

    For so many of these “Celeb Moms Who Smoke,” you say they were regular smokers up until their pregnancy, and “who knows if they quit or still do after having kids.” Is that fair to put them in this article? Your husband has quit in hopes that his kids will never know he smoked. Do you want people to always remember your husband as the “dad who always smoked, and says he quit when the kids were too young to remember, but WHO KNOWS if he really still does??” The way you are calling these celebrities out is stupid and purely sensationalism. You should have stuck with only people who have been documented smoking AFTER having kids. They only became “moms” AFTER pregnancy.

  11. Alicia says:

    Can Gwyneth Paltrow say “hypocrit”? She constantly talks about how wonderfully healthy she is and how everyone can great like her, but she turns around and smokes?! Ugh, I can’t stand her. And in response to the first poster who said that occasionally smoking is the same as occasionally drinking: Um, no it’s not. It takes up to 10 years for the effects of smoking to fully leave your lungs while your body metabolizes alcohol in a day or so.
    I think I’ve lost some respect for these people. (And to be honest I lose some respect for anyone who smokes.) Smoking is so disgusting, and I wish it was illegal. I am so happy that after growing up with two smokers that I live in a smoke free home, and I feel so fortunate that aside from developing an allergy to cigarette smoke in my teens, my lungs weren’t affected from growing up around that crap.

  12. goddess says:

    Obesity kills more people than smoking.

  13. Lia says:

    Hollywood stars have PR companies behind them. They are like brands, and need to be branded in certain ways. They are in no way better than the rest of us, or smarter, they are just branded to look that way. In fact, I would think that they are probably worst than the rest of us because they get this constant feedback from everyone idolizing them. And that can’t be good for anyone’s character. Hopefully Hollywood stars are not the examples we are following when it comes to raising kids. I am sure that we can find true people in our own communities that are good parents and could offer lots of advice and example.

  14. Kierah says:

    @Goddess – if you count the people who have been sickened by secondhand smoke, I’m sure that smoking kills more people than obesity. At least obesity doesn’t hurt the vulnerable people about you.

  15. Lynn says:

    Wow, It’s amazing what busybodys do when bored. I imagine I speak for most of these women when I say “Get A Life” and stay out of theirs!!

  16. des says:

    Judgemental much? In the beginning of this article you implied you weren’t trying to shame them, however your entire picture commentary is completely speculated and pretty negative… “she says she quit, but who knows”
    These women are smokers, not satan. I’m curious as to how many of you stone throwers are popping Xanex or Valium, and how many of you need to… Ug. PS: if any of you weigh more than 150 lbs or have body fat higher than 12%, I suggest you not only start smoking immediately, but also look up the number one killer in America. I can tell you right now that being fat is waaaaaaaaaay worse than smoking and you’re passing your chunky habits onto your innocent babies. Ick.

  17. des says:

    @Lia…. Are you saying that based on the fact that they smoke, they can’t be good parents? Lololololol
    Better put on a helmet, its dangerous riding on a horse so high…

  18. des says:

    @Alicia: I hear what you’re saying about respect… The smokers don’t bother me. Its the serial punctuators that kill me. I lose respect for people who over use or misplace commas. Ug. I hate losing respect for people. Good thing noone cares about who I respect or don’t respect. ;)

  19. MonicaBielanko says:

    @Deja – the reason I keep saying “who knows whether they still smoke” is not to be “sensational” but because I didn’t want to identify someone who had quit as a smoker still.

  20. Linda, T.O.O. says:

    Well, they have to so something in place of eating, I suppose. Hell, I’m not a regalar smoker, but I light up every now and then with friends.

  21. Claudia says:

    You’re “shocked”?! Don’t know what to say… You know some people are shocked to learn that pregnant women have a glass of wine occasionally, right?

  22. dustyling says:

    I cannot believe these actresses spoke. No one does these days. It is so yesterday.

    I have lost a lot of respect for them.

  23. dustyling says:

    I meant to write “I cannot believe they smoke”.

  24. Blair says:

    I was shocked but only because some of the women pictured are not women I think of as people who would smoke. Whether its perceived character, or b/c they extol “healthy living” some of these women, yes, do shock me.

    That being said, good on you Serge for quitting. My husband quit a pack a day habit when I was pregnant b/c he wanted to be healthy for the baby. Its darn hard–and now a year and a half later he is still smoke free! I know you too can do it.

  25. Belinda says:

    Gross, having a ciggie hanging out of their mouths or sucking on a cancer stick like its their last one. Not classy at all ladies.

  26. kaamaveri says:



  27. NYM says:

    This says a lot more about you that I find appalling. You have never put into words the risks of “Passive Smoking.” You married a smoker. Passive smoking is more dangerous than smoking. You and your husband put yourself at a health risk and that is truly unfortunate for your children. Is there evidence that smoking is directly related to whether a child will smoke? There is probably a correlation in both directions. BUT WE DO KNOW PASSIVE SMOKING CAN KILL. So what matters to me is not whether someone smokes, but whether anyone smokes around their children or in rooms that children spend time in. Children cannot control their environment. And that is the moral of the story.

  28. Dan says:

    I love that in this country now smokers are vilified but pot smoking is a-ok lol
    (no unhealthy tar in pot… oh wait)
    also the individual who stated passive smoking is worse than actual smoking is incorrect
    While not good for you, the study “” that stated this was fabricated and the “scientists” who did that study which is widely quoted had to apologize for faking the results.
    It is no more accurate than the studies”" the tobacco industry made for years saying it was good for you

  29. Anidang says:

    Is there some hollywood star that DON’T smoke at all? Or, is there some american who don’t smoke? :P

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