These A-List women ALL overcame tough backgrounds

It’s sometimes easy to forget that many famous stars today didn’t always have it so good.

Before they made it big, some had to endure serious poverty, drug and violence-ridden neighbourhoods and troubled lives at home. Their stories prove to us that no matter what your background, anyone has the potential to make it to the top.

1. Nicki Minaj

A much younger Onika Tanya Maraj’s father was a drug and alcohol addict. His occasional fits of rage resulted one day in a failed attempt to kill her mother by setting their house on fire. Nicki overcame her troubled upbringing to become the most charted female rapper in the history of the Billboard Hot 100.

2. Halle Berry

She may not have started out destitute, but Halle found herself desperate at points on her journey to the top. Leaving Cleveland, Ohio to pursue her acting dreams in New York, she soon ran out of money and was forced to resort to a homeless shelter. The Oscar-winning actresses unlikely to find herself in the same position again, having starred in major franchises such as X-Men and the Bond films.

3. Celine Dion

The singer grew up as the 14th child in a poor household in rural Quebec where her father brought home only $160 a week to support the entire family. She is now one of the highest-earning female entertainers of all time, currently worth $250 million.

4. Demi Moore

We tend to think of celebrities luxuriating alongside crystal clear pools in their millionaire mansions, so picturing them at the other end of the housing chain is often hard to imagine. Yet that’s where 1980’s and 1990’s film star Demi Moore started out, growing up in a New Mexico trailer park with an alcoholic mother and stepfather. She eventually dropped out of school aged 16, moved to Europe and landed a place on General Hospital at 19-years-old. The actress is now worth an estimated $75 million.

5. Christina Aguilera

Artists turn to music for many different reasons, and not all of them are due to positive memories. Christina Aguilera has revealed she initially turned to music to blot out the pain of living with a violent father. From these troubled roots, her musical ability has since won her five Grammy Awards and sold 50 million albums worldwide.