5 Successful Celebrity Side Gigs You Didn’t Know About

celebrity side hustles

The lifestyles of the rich and famous can be pretty amazing. From luxurious European vacations to expensive purchases, celebrities can afford to spend hundreds of thousands without even thinking about it.

Cannes we’re here! 👻 KimKardashian

A post shared by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on

However, not every celebrity is comfortable spending all that money. In fact, several have side gigs to establish another income stream to diversify their finances; it’s a big part of their money-making philosophies.

Here are five celebrities with some serious side hustles.

1. Erykah Badu

Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Erykah Badu has a lucrative career producing and recording albums. She’s also an actress who has starred in acclaimed films like “The Cider House Rules.”

Despite her success in the music and entertainment industries, Badu has another calling: delivering babies as a certified doula.

A doula provides mental and physical help to an expectant mother before, during, and after labor. Since she started her side career as a doula, she has helped bring 40 babies into the world, reported online health resource BlackDoctor.

Badu discovered her passion after helping a friend through labor.

“I’ve always had a mothering nature,” she said in an interview with People. “But I didn’t plan on becoming a doula. I just wanted to care for my family and friends. When I saw the baby, I cried. I knew what I was supposed to do with my life.”

According to Parents.com, Badu is also working toward earning a midwifery certification. Once she has achieved that goal, she plans to open birth centers in inner-city neighborhoods.

Badu does not list her rates for her services publically. However, the typical doula charges between $500 and $3,500, depending on where they live.

2. Scarlett Johansson

As a talented actress, it would seem like Scarlett Johansson has had a privileged life. But that wasn’t always the case. Earlier this year, she appeared on “Inside the Actors Studio” and revealed that she struggled with poverty as a child.

“By the time my twin brother and I came around, I think my parents’ marriage … had a lot of strain,” she said on the Bravo TV show. “We were living on welfare; we were on food stamps. My parents were raising four kids in a low-income household in Manhattan.”

That’s why it was such a big deal for her when she opened a gourmet popcorn shop last year. She’s now balancing her store with her huge movie career.

“It has been a dream of mine and my family for several years to bring our favorite American snack to our favorite European City,” she said in a statement. “My hope is for Yummy Pop to become a Parisian snacking staple and a symbol of friendship between my two most beloved cities, Paris and New York.”

3. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson might be the ultimate side hustler, with several different jobs to bring in more money.

Behind his drive is a tough upbringing. His parents struggled to afford the basics, and they faced eviction and vehicle repossession.

“We were living in an efficiency that cost $120 a week,” he told the Hollywood Reporter. “We come home, and there’s a padlock on the door and an eviction notice. My mom starts bawling. She just started crying and breaking down. ‘Where are we going to live? What are we going to do?'”

His mother tried to do her best for her son, but they moved 13 times during his childhood.

“That was the tipping point,” he told the Hollywood Reporter. “It was about, ‘What can I control with these two hands?’”

He became a top professional wrestler and later, an actor. But along the way, he’s kept multiple income streams coming in. He now runs a small production company, appears on television shows as well as movies, and is writing his second memoir.

With many different sources of income, Johnson ensures he’ll always have money coming in — and will never have to worry about eviction notices again.

4. Jay Leno

Check out the 3 wheel motion of the @vanderhall on YouTube 📺👍🏾 #jaylenosgarage #vanderhall

A post shared by Jay Leno’s Garage (@jaylenosgarage) on

Jay Leno is well-known for his career as the long-time host of “The Tonight Show” and his multimillion-dollar car collection.

However, Leno isn’t the type to spend every penny. Ever since he started working, he made sure to diversify his income streams to bring in extra money.

“I always had two incomes,” he told CNBC. “I’d bank one, and I’d spend one.”

When he was just starting out, he lived off his earnings as a comedian and saved the money he made working at a car dealership. Later, even with huge contracts and television deals, he still worked multiple jobs. He says that policy gives him peace of mind.

“So many people get to be the age I’m at now, and they’ve got nothing because they just blew it all,” he continued. “I put my money in a hammock and say, ‘You relax. I’m going to go work.’ And when I come back, I put some more money in the pile.

“It sounds ridiculous, but if everything ends tomorrow, I know I’ll be fine.”

5. Jeremy Renner

To the end of a goodnight!! 🍸 #oscars #celebration

A post shared by Jeremy Renner (@renner4real) on

Jeremy Renner is a well-known actor recognized for his roles in movies like “The Hurt Locker” and “The Avengers.” But despite his acting career, Renner has another side hustle: flipping houses.

He got started when he was trying to launch his acting career. Like many new actors, Renner was broke. According to Business Insider, he and his friend pooled what money they did have and bought an older home together.

Originally, they didn’t intend to sell it. They just did small renovations to make it more livable, like adding a second bathroom — but then someone offered them double what they paid for the home. That experience helped them get interested in flipping homes, and the pair has sold more than 20 properties since they got started, reported Realtor.com.

Renner credits his side gig with keeping him grounded.

“You run into the Beverly Hilton to do ‘Extra,’ and then you have a meeting here, and then you go to a red carpet,” he said in an interview with The Wrap. “And between all these things, I’m going to pick out tile. I go back to this dirty job site in a suit so that I can tell the electrician where to put light switches. It’s just a little moment of reality.”

Everyone needs multiple income streams

Although you might not have the same earning potential as Scarlett Johansson or Dwayne Johnson, having multiple income streams is important for your financial security. Having other sources of money can help protect you in the case of an emergency, such as losing your job.

If you’re ready to launch a side gig, here are some of the best side hustles to get you started. And who knows: Maybe it will even be the start of your own empire.

Interested in refinancing student loans?

Here are the top 6 lenders of 2018!
LenderRates (APR)Eligible Degrees 
Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
2.58% - 7.25%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit SoFi
2.99% - 6.99%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Laurel Road
2.57% - 6.32%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Earnest
2.57% - 6.49%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit CommonBond
3.11% - 8.46%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Citizens
2.56% - 7.82%Undergrad
& Graduate
Visit Lendkey
Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print, understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.