Celebrities who promote ethical behavior and make responsible personal decisions can have a positive effect on teenagers. Some promote social justice and participate in relief efforts when disasters strike. As long as a teenager doesn't develop an unhealthy obsession with a celebrity or experience delusions of grandeur -- expecting to live like a celebrity -- an interest in movie stars or famous athletes could have some advantages.
Celebrities can have a positive effect on teenagers by setting a good example of how to live and act. For example, some are involved in humanitarian efforts such as fighting social injustices, raising money for sick or injured people, supporting relief efforts when extreme weather damages a community, contributing financially to hospitals or hosting free events to support philanthropic efforts. Celebrities who show integrity in their personal and professional lives, such as obeying the laws and honoring their relationships, are positive role models for teenagers.
Some celebrities promote a positive self-image and help teenagers with self-esteem issues. For example, teen girls often follow celebrities they want to emulate, says psychologist John Grohol, founder of the PsychCentral website. As long as teenagers don't become obsessed with celebrities, a healthy respect could lead to increased or improved self-esteem. For example, a teenager might develop positive hygiene habits, avoid excessive junk food or wear a stylish hairstyle to look more like a specific celebrity.
Celebrities, movies stars, sports figures, pop culture, TV shows and movies are all part of the entertainment industry. Following a celebrity and keeping up with the industry is a fun hobby for many teenagers. Teens who follow celebrities for entertainment purposes generally have extroverted personalities, according to clinical pharmacist and medical writer Jennifer Gibson on the BrainBlogger website. Extroverted teens often engage in harmless celebrity-worship behaviors, such as cutting images out of magazines, researching famous people on TV or the Internet or reading biographies about their lives. As long as a teenager pursues other interests too, a celebrity-following hobby is normal.
Celebrities can have a positive effect in teenagers' lives when they promote education and cultural awareness. Celebrities who complete college coursework, have an interest in politics, write books, study literature, travel abroad or engage in debates showcase their intellectual skills. They teach teenagers that it's not just about what's on the outside -- it's what's on the inside that really matters. Famous athletes who perform eloquent interviews and have college degrees teach teenagers that it pays to stay in school. Movie stars who speak at college graduations or host effective live interviews show teenagers that it takes more than good looks to make it in the real world -- brains count too.