Celebrity endorsements of products, causes and missions have been an integral aspect of fame, pop culture, and marketing tactics for decades. From Britney Spears’s collaboration with Pepsi in the 90s to Zendaya being the face of Lancôme perfume, having a famous face on your product is one of the best ways to send stock flying out the door. People look up to and idolise these personalities, desiring the ability to be more like them but some endorsements aren’t always the most ethical or environmentally friendly options. In fact, some celebs aren’t too concerned about their environmental outputs and others promote being green but don’t practice what they preach. For example, in 2016, Leonardo DiCaprio made headlines after flying 8,000 miles in a private jet to accept a green award.
Whether they’re driving gas guzzlers, wearing controversial furs or speaking out against climate change, there is no shortage of celebrities who have angered environmentalists over the years. We decided to have a look into the celebs with the biggest influence over the public to see just how environmentally friendly they really are.
The Impact of Celebrity Endorsement
The human brain recognizes celebrities similarly to how it recognizes people we know in real life. The effect being that, if consumers are fans, they end up placing a higher value on products or causes that celebrities are endorsing, almost as if they’re receiving recommendations from a good friend.
By using celebrities to vouch for or promote their products and missions, brands and organisations can increase the trust and familiarity that consumers have in them - important factors involved in the decision-making process and vital for keeping those consumers coming back.
How We Did It
To find out which A-listers are D-listers on the green list, we analysed the lifestyle habits of 22 mega-celebrities. We categorised mega-celebs as being those with 100-million plus followers on Instagram. From Kim Kardashian to Cristiano Ronaldo, we’ve estimated how many cars, private jets, homes and overseas vacations they’ve taken since 2020. We also looked at their diets and their use of animal products to determine which mega-celebrity is actually the least environmentally friendly over all. We’ve then created an index ranking these metrics to determine the ‘total score’ and, ultimately, find the celebrity with the worst environmental footprint.
It’s these Oscar-winners, chart-toppers, TV stars, and athletes that have the biggest influence on the average person and their own environmental output. So, who came out on top and who is at the bottom of the pile for eco-friendly habits?
“Celebrities are known for their love of long-haul flights, high-powered cars and wardrobes adorned with animal products. Looking over the data, it’s surprising to see Kourtney Kardashian, who prides herself as being one of the most environmentally-friendly and sustainably-conscious members of her family, in the top five least environmentally conscious celebrities.
While Virat Kohli is the only sports celebrity to be named as environmentally-conscious. These household names have an undeniable influence on society so while it is great to see some celebrities leading the way to a better world, there is definitely room for improvement for others. We hope these findings will shed light on the fact that although someone may claim to be “environmentally friendly”, their actions really need to match their words and pledges. We hope to see more celebrities like Ariana Grade paving the way for a greener world.” - Abdullah Green, Founder of Greens Steel
1. Cristiano Ronaldo
One of the world’s best football players, Cristiano Ronaldo, has tied for first place as the least eco-friendly celebrity. Captain of the Portugal national team and current player of Italy’s Juventus football club, Ronaldo is reportedly worth $500-million and is not shy when it comes to splashing his cash. With two private jets, six mega mansions and a huge 23 luxury car collection including a Bugatti and five Ferraris, it’s no wonder why this sporting legend is not so revered in the eyes of environmentalists.
2. Kylie Jenner
Kylie Jenner is one of the most-followed influencers on Instagram with over 260 million followers and, in November 2018, the New York Post tabloid credited her for being the most influential celebrity in the fashion industry. But unfortunately for this billionaire, influence doesn’t equal eco-friendly and she comes in second place on our list. Since 2020, Kylie has taken a whopping eight vacations on her private jet and the entrepreneur is also fond of luxury cars. With multiple gas guzzling vehicles such as a Rolls Royce (decked out with a custom pink interior), a Lamborghini worth about $3 million, and multiple Ferrari’s and Range Rovers, Kylie’s car collection is worth over $5 million and definitely can’t be considered good for the environment. To top it all off, Kylie owns five different multi-million dollar homes across California. She also eats meat and uses various animal products which all subtract from her overall eco-friendly score.
3. Kourtney Kardashian
The second (but certainly not final) member of the Kardashian-Jenner family to appear on this list, Kourtney Kardashian is half sister to Kylie, older sister to the infamous Kim Kardashian, and is third on our least eco-friendly celebs list. Kourtney is an entrepreneur as well, dabbling in children’s clothing brands, is an actor, appearing on the One Life To Life soap opera, and has a dedicated following of 139 million people on Instagram. Although she doesn’t have her own private jet, Kourtney makes up for that with her huge collection of 25 gas guzzling cars that range from the high performance Ferrari 458 Italia to an ultra-luxury Rolls Royce Wraith. Since 2020, Kourtney has taken six overseas vacations so has a significant carbon footprint beneath her however she claws back some eco-friendly clout by being plant-based (although she does still use animal products).
4. Justin Bieber
Teen heartthrob pop star turned pop and R&B singer, Justin Beiber is a Canadian music artist who rose to fame after being discovered via his YouTube channel in the early 2000s. He has a decent 191 million followers on Instagram but unfortunately for him, he comes in fourth for the least eco-friendly celebs. Since 2020, the performer has taken a whopping nine overseas vacations - the highest number on our list. He has his own private jet as well as 13 luxury cars - a collection that includes a Lamborghini Aventador, a bright red Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport, and a Christmas themed Mercedes G65 AMG. Bieber also owns three homes. His first step onto the property ladder saw him purchase an estate on 101 acres of land in Puslinch, Ontario, Canada. His $8.5 million second home is based in the Holmby Hills area of Los Angeles and his third can be found in the mountain above Beverly Hills and is spread over a modest 100,000 square feet.
5. Dwayne Johnson
The former WWE wrestler, turned actor and producer, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, is sixth on our list of eco-UNfriendly celebrities. Although The Rock hasn’t been on any overseas vacations since 2020, he makes up for doing so with his own private jet which he most likely uses to access over 13 different homes. Johnson was one of 2019’s highest paid actors and has over 264 million followers. He also has a passion for acquiring property. He owns multiple multi-million dollar properties across the US and even the UK. These properties include a farm in Georgia worth over $9 million, a nine bedroom mansion in London, England, and a secret Virginia farm that boasts its own private hiking trails. His car collection is similarly impressive as it boasts a super-lux Rolls Royce Wraith, the huge Ford F-150, and a Pagani Huayra which is reported to be one of the world’s most expensive cars at around $1.3 million.
6. Kim Kardashian
The third member of the Kardashian-Jenner family to make our top 10 is Kim Kardashian, younger sister to Kourtney Kardashian and half sister to Kylie Jenner. Like her sisters, Kim reached infamy by starring on the incredibly popular TV show Keeping Up With The Kardashians and is also famous for her marriage to Kanye West. Like Kourtney, Kim doesn’t have a private jet (although we’re sure Kylie probably lets them use hers) but still has an impressive car collection. It’s thought that she sells and acquires new cars fairly regularly so the rosta of vehicles is constantly changing but among the ones she’s spoken about or been seen driving in the past are a Cadillac Escalade, Ferrari 458 Italia, and Rolls Royce Phantom. Kim is newly plant-based which adds a couple of eco-friendly points but the seven overseas vacations and five homes set her back again.
7. Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi is often considered the best football player in the world. He currently plays for the Paris Saint-Germain team and is captain of the Argentinian national team and is very influential on social media with 255 million followers. Unfortunately for the football player, he doesn’t score very highly on the eco-friendly scale. When it comes to transport, Messi enjoys a collection of 14 cars as well as a private jet. His car collection includes three Audis - an RS6, a Q7 and an A7 - and some expensive performance cars in rare colours such as the Pagani Zonda Tricolore and the Mercedes SLS AMG. He has whisked himself away on just two overseas vacations this year and can boast owning three houses, two luxury homes in Barcelona and one in his home country of Argentina.
8. Kendall Jenner
Back to the Kardashian-Jenners, Kendall Jenner boasts a modest 184 million followers on Instagram and is our ninth least eco-friendly celeb that we looked into. She rose to fame alongside the rest of her family on Keeping Up With The Kardashians but is also successful in her own right, becoming a model and launching a fashion label on the side. In contrast to her sisters’ multiple properties, Kendall Jenner only has one house, a 6,625-square-foot Spanish-style home located in the highly sought after Mulholland Estates, a gated community in LA favoured by other celebs such as Christina Aguilera and DJ Khaled. It is a highly personalised space with plenty of homely touches, emotive artwork, and thoughtful details. Her collection of eight cars features a combination of super performance machines, 4x4’s, and vintage vehicles such as a 1957 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible, four Rolls Royces, and a Lamborghini Aventador. The 24 year old doesn’t own a private jet but this hasn’t stopped her from taking four overseas vacations since 2020.
Neymar is a Brazilian footballer who is widely regarded as another of the best players in the world. He plays for the Paris Saint-Germain and Brazil national teams, boasts an Instagram following of 159 million, and was named on the 2017 list of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine. He is also the fourth highest-paid athlete in the world so it’s no wonder that he owns 14 cars. His collection boasts a range of super cars including a Lamborghini Veneno priced at $420,000, a $315,000 Lykan Hypersport, and a $132,000 Porsche Panamera. He doesn’t skimp out on sky travel either and owns not one, but two private jets, the highest number of a single celebrity on our list so far. When it comes to houses, Neymar has two. His first home in Mangaratiba, Brazil is where his family stays. It boasts five bedrooms and six suites as well as a tennis court, swimming pool, a heliport and a seperate gym house. It’s also where he and a group of friends spent their COVID-19 lockdown - not a bad place to spend quarantine at all. He moved into his second home in 2017 - a five storey mansion in Paris.
10. Jennifer Lopez
Pop culture icon, J.Lo is a popular music artist, successful actor, a philanthropist and an activist as well. Her Instagram following is in the 170 million range and she’s estimated to be worth around $40 million. She is around the midpoint among our eco-friendly celebrities with 14 points. Lopez owns six homes across the US including a beachfront retreat in Miami, an estate in Long Island, and a New York penthouse as well as an eight acre estate in Bel Air. She also boasts a collection of seven luxury cars that include a Rolls Royce Ghost, a Bentley Continental, and an Aston Martin DB7 - an impressive collection worth almost $1 million. Since 2020, J.Lo has gone on three vacations overseas but follows a plant-based diet so claims a few extra eco-friendly points for that lifestyle choice.
11. Khloe Kardashian
Khloe is the fifth, final, and most eco-friendly member of the Kardashian-Jenner family to appear on our list. She boasts an Instagram following of 177 million followers and also rose to fame through the TV show, Keeping Up With The Kardashians. She has since ventured into other aspects of TV such as appearing on The Celebrity Apprentice in 2012 and is in the fashion industry with her sisters Kourtney and Kim. She owns two homes, one in Cleveland and a second in the Hidden Hills neighbourhood of LA which she’s had built from scratch. The $17 million estate is right next to her mom, Kris’s $20 million home. As well as taking three overseas vacations since 2020, Khloe owns seven luxury cars. Three Rolls Royces, two Mercedes cars, and a Bentley make up part of the rosta of high-end vehicles in her (probably equally as expansive) garage.
12. Miley Cyrus
Pop sensation Miley Cyrus has a lot of show biz experience under her belt. The ex-Disney child star has branched out in recent years, into more pop and rock influenced music and remains as successful now as she did when she starred as Hannah Montana. This is certainly evident in her 142 million-strong following as well as her lavish lifestyle and she is the first celebrity on our list to venture into the greener half of the table. Miley owns two homes, one in the Hidden Hills neighbourhood of Los Angeles and one back in her home town of Franklin, Tennessee. She has only taken one overseas vacation since the start of 2020 but does own a private jet which reduces her eco-friendly score somewhat. Miley Cyrus is also a bit of a gear head and owns 13 cars, one of which is a Tesla Model S. She is the first celeb on our list to own one of these electric and eco-friendly cars. Her other vehicles include a McLaren MP4-12C and, of all things, a Toyota Prius.
13. Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato is an American singer, songwriter, and actor. After appearing on children’s TV for a few years, Demi also starred on the Disney Channel series Camp Rock as well as a few others before breaking out into the music scene in 2008. Demi has 113 million followers on Instagram and comes in at 13th place on our eco-friendly celeb list. They own one home, a farmhouse style home in the Studio City suburb of Los Angeles which they bought in September 2020. Demi does own a private jet but has only taken two overseas vacations since 2020 so claws back a few eco-friendly points for that. As well as the private jet, Demi also owns a collection of eight cars which includes a Mercedes Benz AMG GTC, a Jaguar F-Type, and a Cadillac Escalade to name just a few.
14. Kevin Hart
Kevin Hart is an American stand-up comedian, actor, and producer. He rose to fame after appearing regularly in the TV show Undeclared and has since been in many major films as well as performing stand up. Hart has a modest following of 120 million people on Instagram and lives a fairly eco-friendly lifestyle. He does own a private jet but he is vegetarian and only owns one home. It’s not been made public where exactly he lives with his family but we do know that he currently lives in a custom-built 9,500-square-foot Spanish villa in a gated community in LA. In June 2021, he also purchased the neighbouring plot which expands his property to around 42 acres of private land. The comedian is known for loving cars and has a decent collection of 13 different vehicles. His collection includes a mixture of modern super cars and vintage vehicles such as a Ferrari 488 GTB Spider, an Aston Martin Vanquish, and a Pontiac GTO.
15. Ellen Degeneres
Ellen has come under a lot of scrutiny lately but despite this, the talk show host and comedian has ranked fairly highly for eco-friendliness. Ellen and her wife Portia currently own two properties in the Montecito suburb of California but we wouldn’t be surprised if this changes soon due to the couple’s passion for buying, renovating, and selling luxury homes at a rapid pace. They currently live in a sprawling ranch (which Degeneres owned previously but recently rebought) and also own a second home which is built in the South African Cape-Dutch style. Degeneres hasn’t taken any overseas vacations since 2020 and doesn’t own a private jet (having been frequently outspoken against them) but she does have a passion for cars and boasts a modest collection of eight vehicles. She has a particular penchant for Porsches and her collection includes a Cayenne S, a Panamera, and a 993. She also owns a Land Rover Defender and a Ferrari California.
16. Nicki Minaj
We’re heading into the more environmentally friendly celebs now with Nicki Minaj. The Queen of Rap is our 7th most eco-friendly celebrity on our list and boasts a following of 154 million people. Considering her fame, Minaj appears to live a fairly modest lifestyle as she only has one home, doesn’t have a private jet, and hasn’t taken any vacations since 2020 all of which rack up the points for her. Up until fairly recently, she was living in a Beverly Hills mansion however it has been reported that she has moved out of the 9 bedroom, 8 bathroom home. It’s not clear where she is currently living - probably kept secret due to a break-in that happened in 2020 where a lot of her belongings were destroyed. Although only consisting of seven cars, Nicki has a pretty impressive collection of vehicles. Her custom pink Lamborghini Aventador has made a few headlines, as well as her pink Bentley Continental GT. Her collection also includes a Range Rover, a Rolls Royce, and other high-end luxury cars all of which she has been seen driving or posing in front of.
17. Taylor Swift
Known for her love of cats and writing breakup songs, Taylor Swift is a surprisingly eco-friendly celeb - despite the fact that she owns two private jets. She boasts an Instagram following of 175 million and has a large collection of houses and cars as well. Currently, Swift owns about $81 million worth of real estate across the US with homes in New York, Nashville, Los Angeles, and even Rhode Island. How does she access all these homes and jet off on her overseas vacations? Private jet of course, of which she owns two. Swift is the celeb on our list with the fewest cars though and owns just four vehicles which is one of the reasons she ranks so high. Her car collection is made up of a pink Chevy Silverado, a Mercedes-Benz Viano, a black Toyota Sequoia, and an Audi R8, showing us that function matters to her just as much as performance does.
Rising to fame in the late 90s due to being the lead singer of Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé is one of the world’s best-selling music artists and has all of the things you’d expect Queen B to have - cars, houses, and a private jet. Between her and husband Jay-Z, the couple owns 15 cars although only five belong to Beyoncé herself. These include a Mercedes-Benz S-Class, a Cadillac Escalade, and a Mercedes-Benz SLR Mclaren. She may have a private jet, but Bey has only jetted off on one overseas vacation since 2020, giving her a few extra points. The singer has an impressive property portfolio and currently owns three homes, however the family spends most of their time in their $90 million mansion in LA. The estate spans 1.88 acres and includes eight bedrooms, eleven bathrooms, a spa, staff quarters, a home cinema, four pools and a basketball court. It also has a 15-car garage - handy seeing as that’s exactly how many they have between them.
19. Selena Gomez
Selena is another child actor-turned singer, songwriter, and producer. She was named as the most followed celebrity on Instagram for three years before being overtaken by Ariana Grande in 2018. She does have her own private jet and eats meat which takes a few points off her score however she only has one home which puts her above a few others on the list. Her LA home spans an impressive 11,000 square feet and has six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms. It probably has a sizable garage as well considering Gomez owns seven cars including a BMW X6, A Mercedes Maybach, and an Audi A6.
20. Katy Perry
Katy Perry is living the teenage dream of being the third most environmentally conscious celebrity. Katy has been on two overseas vacations since 2020 and owns a private jet however she gained a few extra points by having a plant-based diet. She has two homes, a Mediterranean-style villa in Montecito, California and a five bed, five bathroom mansion in Beverly Hills both of which she shares with partner Orlando Bloom and their baby daughter Daisy. Katy Perry also boasts a garage full of impressive cars from an Audi A5 to the eco-friendly Tesla Model S and Fiskar Karma.
21. Virat Kohli
Indian Cricketer and captain of the India national team, Virat Kohli is regarded as one of the best batsmen in the world. Virat is the only person on this list who doesn’t own a house in LA, or in the US at all with both residences being in India. One home is located in the city of Gurgaon, a city south west of New Delhi, and the other in Mumbai. Virat eats a vegetarian diet which gives him a few extra points as well as only having the two residences, although he does have a private jet as well as a collection of 12 cars. He is very fond of Audis and owns an Audi R8 V10, an Audi S6, and two limited edition Audi R8 LMX cars as well as a Toyota and a Renault.
22. Ariana Grande
It’s none other than global sensation, Ariana Grande, who has made it to the position of most eco-friendly celebrity. The former Nickelodeon actress and successful singer is one of the most followed celebrities in the world with 261 million followers. She leads a vegan lifestyle without using animal products which pulls her ahead of the others on the list and owns just three homes and five cars (although she does have a private jet). Her three homes span throughout Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, and Hollywood Hills. For such a small person at just over five feet tall, Grande likes a big car. Her five-car collection includes a Range Rover Sport, a Mercedes Maybach S600, a Cadillac Escalade, and a Mercedes Benz AMG G-63. We commend Ariana for her efforts in being as eco-friendly as possible.
Despite all of the celebrities we looked at living lavish lifestyles, it’s clear that the ones who go on fewer holidays, own fewer houses, and don’t have too many cars turned out to be the most eco-friendly. Air travel leaves a very big carbon footprint which is a reason why the least eco-friendly celebs had the lowest scores. Additionally, a vegan or vegetarian diet is another common factor among our top three celebs as it’s a great way to help do your bit for the planet. We also saw more electric or hybrid vehicles among the celebrities with the highest scores proving that you can still enjoy a smooth ride while doing your part.
And that's it!
Greens Steel is dedicated to helping our customers reduce the impact they have on the planet and we make sustainable and reliable products to help you do so. Check out our range of eco-friendly drinkware to help you live a more sustainable life or you can read up about how the smallest changes can make the biggest impact!
Greens Steel Wellness Contributor