Ever since the coronavirus pandemic first became part of our everyday lives, podcasts have become even more important than ever. Whether we put them on in the background during our WFH day or tune in before bed to relieve anxiety, the wonderful world of podcasts has been there for us through it all.
And as we head into the autumn months, now is the perfect time to find yourself a new podcast to while away the darker evenings.
We all know that the world of podcasting has revolutionised the way we consume news, guided the way we talk about self-care and mental health and furthered our obsession with true crime – but it’s also changing the way we interact with celebrities.
Long-gone are the days when the world’s biggest personalities seemed like distant people we only saw or heard from when they were pasted across advertisements or staring out at us from the front page of a magazine. Now, more than ever before, we’re connecting with our favourite celebrities through podcasts – a medium which allows individuals in the limelight to explore their greatest passions and give us an insight into their lives during this strange time.
Lucky for us, the number of celebrities starting podcasts is constantly increasing, meaning there’s always some new episode or series to get started with. So without further ado, here’s Stylist’s guide to the best celebrity podcasts to get started with.
The Michelle Obama Podcast
You can’t talk about celebrity podcasts without taking about Michelle Obama’s incredible new series. In each episode, the former First Lady sits down with a new guest to discuss the relationships and experiences that make us who we are – tackling subjects from the complexities of marriage to managing mental health during a pandemic, this series is a must-listen.
I Weigh with Jameela Jamil
Based on the highly-successful Instagram account of the same name, I Weigh with Jameela Jamil sees the actor and activist reflect on society’s definition of worth and value through conversations with high-profile names about their “past shames”. From Reese Witherspoon discussing her experience with postpartum depression to Roxane Gay’s insight on concern trolling, this isn’t one to miss.
Grounded with Louis Theroux
Louis Theroux has been keeping himself busy in 2020 with his new BBC podcast Grounded With Louis Theroux, which sees the famous documentarian sit down for a chat with some of the high-profile figures he’s been longing to talk to. So far, Theroux has been joined by names including Helena Bonham Carter and Rose McGowan – we can’t wait to see who joins him next.
Sex, Lies and DM Slides with Gizzi Erskine
Food writer and chef Gizzi Erskine’s new podcast isn’t necessarily aimed at foodies. When she first announced the podcast on Instagram, Erskine said Sex, Lies and DM Slides would focus on “all the kind of crazy stuff that happens within the modern world of romance in the internet age”. She also revealed that guest interviews will include “celebrities, comedians, fetish club hosts, dominatrixes, dating site addicts and porn stars”. Erskine is also joined by her co-host Sydney Lima.
This City by Clara Amfo
BBC Radio 1 presenter Clara Amfo has made her mark of the podcasting world with this incredible series. The premise is simple: This City sees Amfo interview a series of celebrity guests (who happen to be some of London’s most recognisable names), about their favourite stories, hidden gems and certified spots in the city. With guests including Louis Theroux, Dina Asher Smith and Jade Thirlwall, you’ll be hooked after the first minute.
CASTaway by Laura Whitmore
You may know Laura Whitmore for her new presenter position on the new season of Love Island, but did you know she also hosts podcast? CASTaway sees the TV personality sit down with a number of celebrity guests to talk about all things podcasts, whereas her new series, Dating Hall Of Fame, explores the wonderful world of bad dates.
How Did We Get Here? with Claudia Winkleman and Professor Tanya Byron
Former Stylist guest editor Claudia Winkleman is back with the second season of her podcast How Did We Get Here? and it’s safe to say we’re very excited. The radio presenter and Strictly Come Dancing host joins her good friend, clinical psychologist Professor Tanya Byron, to record sessions that offer a deep insight into family issues through conversations with guests. With topics ranging from parental estrangement, gender identity, domestic violence, trauma, inheriting mental health issues, family dynamics after cancer and raising a severely disabled daughter, How Did We Get Here? is a passionate, insightful and moving experience with clear outcomes to each of its 12 episodes.
So Lucky with Dawn O’Porter
Everybody wants to be Dawn O’Porter’s friend, right? The author, broadcaster and journalist has always explored the many issues that affect women – dieting culture, online dating, pregnancy – in a uniquely funny, thoughtful and relatable way. She’s also the writer of hit novels Paper Aeroplanes, The Cows and, most recently, So Lucky. In So Lucky, O’Porter tells the story of female friendships and the perks and pitfalls of life during the digital age. With these themes from the book in mind, Porter has launched a 12-episode podcast series, interviewing guests including Matt Haig, Giovanna Fletcher and Sara Pascoe about the role that luck has played in their lives.
RuPaul: What’s The Tee? with Michelle Visage
Now RuPaul’s Drag Race has finally landed in the UK, it’s time to get listening to this incredible podcast if you haven’t already.
RuPaul: What’s The Tee? with Michelle Visage sees the two hosts dive into everything, including pop culture, beauty and general advice, as they are joined by a number of high-profile stars from across the worlds of TV, film and music. Perhaps most excitingly, the podcast gives us a peek behind the scenes of the hit show – the icing on top of the cake.
Instead of boasting a mere one or two celebrity hosts, Modern Love has them all. This podcast version of the classic New York Times column sees well-known personalities read out true stories of “love, loss and redemption”.
Recent episodes have featured the likes of Amanda Seyfried and Logan Browning.
The Left Ear by Dakota Johnson
The Left Ear marks actor Dakota Johnson’s debut into the podcasting world, and while the episodes are never an easy listen, the project is an incredibly important one.
After posting a picture of her phone number on Instagram, Johnson asked women all over the world to share their stories of sexual harassment, abuse and assault via the phone’s voicemail service. The Left Ear is a collated collection of those stories, told by the survivors themselves.
Happy Place by Fearne Cotton
Boasting an impressive 44 episodes in its entirety, Happy Place has made a name for itself in the podcasting world – and it’s a must-listen for anyone looking for some powerful, thought-provoking interviews to dive into.
Table Manners with Jessie Ware
Table Manners with Jessie Ware is a podcast all about the messy intersection of food and family which occurs over the dinner table.
Accompanied by her “chef extraordinaire” mum Lennie, each week Ware invites over a new guest to sit down and chat over a plate of delicious food. It’s a laid back, funny and generally delightful listen – perfect for popping in one ear during your commute.
Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness
If you’re someone who finds yourself constantly asking questions about how the world works, Getting Curious is probably the podcast for you.
Hosted by Queer Eye star Jonathan Van Ness, each of the episodes (which are uploaded weekly) sees the host explore a topic with the help of an expert in that field. Get ready to have your curiosity piqued.
The Gurls Talk Podcast by Adwoa Aboah
Each episode features a different incredible guest (recent appearances include Queenie author Candice Carty-Williams and period poverty activist Amika George) as the model speaks to them about their lives, issues they’re passionate about and everything in between.
Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations by Oprah Winfrey
Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations is a podcast designed to lead you through the big questions in life.
Featuring powerful interviews with best-selling authors, thought leaders and health and wellness experts, the episodes are thought-provoking and inspiring all at once. The most recent episode features Chanel Miller, the sexual assault survivor at the centre of the Brock Turner case.
Katie Piper’s Extraordinary People
Katie Piper’s Extraordinary People is jam-packed with inspirational, life-affirming stories about some of the world’s most incredible people.
Again, each episode features a different guest, as Piper sits down with them to discuss how they turned adversity into positivity. One thing’s for certain: this podcast is truly extraordinary.
With contributions from Georgina Smith
Images: Getty/4th Floor Creative
As Stylist’s junior digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.
Recommended by Lauren Geall
Dakota Johnson’s powerful collection of real life sexual assault stories is surprisingly uplifting
Fearne Cotton explains how to find your Happy Place
How Adwoa Aboah’s Gurls Talk is helping women get strong this International Women’s Day
Katie Piper’s 8-step guide to a kinder and more compassionate life