When you think about Blake Lively, you can’t help but think about sunshine and happiness. Her long, golden locks of hair, glowing skin, and magical smile are enough to make anyone seriously admire her.
Believe it or not, but Blake Lively wasn’t always the stunning movie star she is today. Her childhood was anything but conventional and her launch into Hollywood was a near miss. Blake constantly hears about how perfect others think she is, with her perfect husband and her perfect life, but she’s always the first to admit that her life is definitely not flawless. And for this, we love her even more.
The award-winning actress is everything you’d want your daughters to grow up to become. She’s a sensational role model and does not take the life she has for granted. She and her husband, actor Ryan Reynolds, hold strong to their morals and life beliefs and do whatever they can to raise their two daughters to the highest standards. Despite those pesky paparazzi’s best efforts, Blake has done everything in her power to keep her personal life out of the spotlight.
Over the years, Blake has become notoriously private and has chosen to share only what she sees fit. Fans of the star flock to any bit of information she releases and relish all the juicy details. Here are 25 of those lesser-known details about everyone’s favorite girl-next-door.
25 Blake Was Named After A Boy
On August 25, 1987, the world gave us Blake Ellender Brown. The destined star was actually named after her grandmother’s brother. You’d know her now as Blake Lively, though.
Oddly enough, "boy" names have become more and more popular over the years, maybe thanks to this lady!
In a nontraditional manner, when Blake’s father, actor Ernie Brown, married Blake’s mother, talent scout Elaine Lively, he took on her last name–making him Ernie Lively. It wasn’t until Blake decided to become an actress that she, too, made the decision to also change her last name to Lively.
24 Her Sister Was A Teen Witch
Blake grew up in a pretty famous family–all of her four siblings are, or have at one point been, in show business. Blake’s older half-sister Robyn Lively is best known for her role as Louise Miller in everyone’s favorite 80’s teen comedy, Teen Witch.
When speaking about her relationship with Robyn, Blake has admitted there is nothing better than having a sister in life. In an interview with Access Hollywood, Blake warmly referred to Robyn as her best friend and someone to look up to and model herself after.
23 Blake Was A 3-Year-Old First Grader
So technically, Blake was not an actual three-year-old first grader, but she did attend the first grade when she was just a toddler. The story goes that Blake’s older brother was set to begin school and he was feeling quite anxious about the new experience.
Blake was tall for her age, so her mother saw this as an opportunity to offer her brother a little support.
She enrolled Blake in the school as a first grader, too, to accompany him. This only lasted a few weeks, though, because soon the teachers started noticing something wasn’t right.
22 Her Acting Lessons Were Not Planned
Blake Lively wasn’t officially enrolled in any sort of acting classes as a child, but due to her parents’ jobs and the atmosphere surrounding her family, she picked up a lot of valuable talents on her own.
Her parents actually started teaching an acting class, and, not wanting to leave their young daughter at home with a babysitter, Blake got to tag along. This is where she started gaining basic acting skills and building her own self-confidence, without any pressure from mom and pop.
21 She Was A Star Student In High School
A star student, class president, and cheerleader, Blake always did very well in school, but she especially excelled while attending Burbank High School. She graduated in 2005 and had dreams of attending Stanford University.
She never really thought about becoming a famous actress while growing up, but sometimes you can’t fight fate.
Blake was actually banned from attending her graduation ceremony with her classmates because the high school’s administration felt she had missed too many days of school. The 17-year-old was off filming her first big movie.
20 Blake Nearly Bombed Her First Movie Casting
Blake received her first audition for a major role in a movie while she was just a junior in high school. As she entered the room and faced the casting department for Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, she had no idea what she was supposed to do.
According to Blake, she simply walked up to them, handed them her photo and walked out without saying anything. The crew thought she was joking and then decided Blake (and her personality) was the perfect fit for Bridget.
19 She Basically Attended An Unconventional College
Even though Blake didn’t get to attend her dream university after high school, she did get “accepted” into a very different type of college.
She waited until she finished high school and got her diploma before jumping back into the world of acting.
Her next movie role was alongside Justin Long and Jonah Hill in the 2006 comedy, Accepted. Even though this film wasn’t raved about by critics and Blake was only a minor character, everyone began taking notice of the rising star.
18 Her First New York Apartment Was Fit For A Mouse
Blake Lively has always appeared so glamorous. She was, after all, Serena freakin’ van der Woodsen… However, she is the first to admit that the beginning of her new and exciting New York life was anything but Upper East Side.
“My first New York apartment was really, really, really tiny,” she stated in an interview with Variety. “The kitchen and the closet were the same room.” Blake also confessed she had way too many cake pans for one tiny apartment, too.
17 Blake Knew "Lonely Boy" For Years Before She Was Serena
The undying connection between Lonely Boy Dan Humphrey and Serena van der Woodson on Gossip Girl may have not been pure acting. The stars of the hit CW show, Penn Badgley and Blake Lively, knew each other years before joining on set in 2007.
The two stars had known each other since they were 11 years old, most likely due to her family’s role in Hollywood.
Blake and Penn ended up dating for three years while filming Gossip Girl but split in 2010. The pair were surprisingly able to keep their breakup a secret from cast and crew for months.
16 She Has Been Linked To Other Hollywood Names
Before saying vows with Hollywood star Ryan Reynolds, Blake canoodled with a couple of other big names. She doesn’t have a long list of dating history by any means and has also admitted to being very selective on who she dates.
After her relationship with Penn Badgely ended, she was briefly linked with actor Ryan Gosling, though a relationship was never confirmed. Then, in 2011, Blake had a classic summer fling with movie star Leonardo DiCaprio. The pair travelled all over Europe before ending things after just a few months of dating.
15 Her Romance With Ryan Was Almost A Forbidden Love
Blake met her now-husband Ryan Reynolds when they were both cast in the 2010 superhero flick, The Green Lantern. The pair reportedly hit it off really well and became inseparable. However, they were both involved in serious relationships with other people at the time.
Ryan Reynolds had been married to actress Scarlett Johansson since 2008 and Blake was dating her Gossip Girl co-star, Penn Badgley. But Blake and Ryan became really close friends and kept in touch even after filming ended.
14 Blake And Ryan's First Date Wasn't Actually Their Date
A year after Green Lantern, Blake and Ryan were finally single at the same time. The two stars finally went on a date together. However, it was a double date. She was with another man and he was with another woman.
"That was the most awkward date because we were just like fireworks coming across," Ryan recalled in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. "It was weird at first, but we were buddies for a long time. I think it's the best way to have a relationship is to start as friends."
13 She Is A Complete Foodie
When Blake isn’t busy acting, being a mother, and being a wife, she can usually be found in the kitchen cooking up something delicious. The actress describes herself as a total “foodie.” She loves cooking, baking and creating anything with food.
In 2010, Blake attended a private workshop at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris to help pursue her strong passion for cooking.
Also, in what should be no surprise, Blake personally designed her home’s kitchen and created her own limited edition S’mores cupcake for Hollywood’s hottest cupcake bakery, Sprinkles.
12 Blake Isn't Afraid To Make Fun Of Herself
Blake Lively isn’t afraid to have a little fun at her own expense. Recently, Blake shared a snap of herself in a plaid pantsuit ensemble on Instagram. She captioned the photo, “Picnic anyone? I’ll bring the tablecloth…”
A fan commented, “I say this with so much love & respect for you babe, please hire a stylist or fire the one you're currently with.” To which she simply replied, “Thank you for the tips, sir," she wrote. "Alas, I've tried to fire @blakelively so many times. But [she] just keeps coming back. She won't leave me alone.”
11 Blake And Ryan Want A Big Family
Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds share together two beautiful little girls; however, they have openly confessed they definitely want more children. While pregnant with her second child in 2016, Blake joked that her and her husband were “officially breeders,” in an interview on NBC’s Today.
Blake comes from a family of five children and Ryan from a family of four children.
They know what it is like growing up with siblings and want their children to have the same experiences.
10 She Doesn't Share Photos Of Her Children On Social Media
Life as a celebrity can be very difficult with the constant invasion of privacy. In an effort to shelter their children from publicity’s scrutiny, Blake and Ryan have been very secretive about their daughters. They make a point not to post any photos of them up on social media, too.
Blake even kept the names and genders of her daughters a secret for a long time after they were born. The girls hadn't even made their first public appearance until the 2016 ceremony where Ryan received his Hollywood Walk of Fame star. It’s safe to say the two cuties stole the show.
9 Her Dancing Skills Are On Point
Blake is a self-proclaimed dance master... well, kind of. She proudly admits to knowing the entire dance from that one awkward finale scene in Netflix’s The OA. If you haven’t seen that dance, you need to.
Blake has also been in a hilarious dance battle with comedian Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show.
She took the competition very seriously and even ended up with a skinned knee. Battles aside, though, this movie star knows how to dance for fun. On the way to the 2018 Met Gala, Blake rented a party bus and had a dance-off during the ride.
8 Blake's Favorite Instagrammer Is An Artist
Her favorite Instagrammer is the Louisiana-based artist Ashley Longshore. Ashley is best known for her pop culture paintings and her focus on Hollywood glamour and American consumerism. Blake first met Ashley many years ago and has been smitten with her ever since.
"She has a vibrant and distinct personality that's all over her work," Lively explained during an interview with Elle. "I saw her mind, humor, and her wild world. That look into her unfiltered self, which appears in every paint stroke, drew me in."
7 Blake And Ryan Don't Work At The Same Time
Family is the number one priority for Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds. Raising their children and spending time with each other is one of the most important things to them. This can become a near impossible goal when both parents are big movie stars, though.
However, this pair refuses to take their life for granted.
They choose not to work on a project at the same time and instead travel together for work as a family. “We’ve each given up stuff we loved in order to not work at the same time,” Blake expressed to Glamour.
6 She Has Worked With Child Rescue Coalition
Blake uses her position in Hollywood to help fight for people who don’t have someone to speak up for them. She 100 percent supports Child Rescue Coalition and their mission “to raise awareness on the global crisis” of speaking up for children in negative situations.
The Childhood Coalition has arrested over 9,000 criminals and rescued over 2,000 children. Blake, as a mother of two young girls, will always feel passionate about this cause. “If you proactively find these [criminals], you can save so many children,” she explained to Variety.
5 Blake Did Many Of Her Own Stunts For The Shallows
During the filming of The Shallows, Blake actually did most of her stunts. During the film, Blake plays a surfer who gets attacked by a shark and is forced to survive.
According to Blake in an interview with ET, production didn’t hire a stunt double until the last two weeks of shooting.
“Every single day there wasn't a single scene that wasn't stunt-heavy." Even more impressive, Blake was pregnant with her second child for at least half of the film’s production.
4 She Claims She And Ryan Are Both Very Shy
The top actress claims her and her husband Ryan Reynolds are both actually really shy people. “My husband and I are really shy people who express ourselves best when we’re acting, when we’re hiding as someone else,” Blake expressed in an interview with Glamour. “So, the fact that very shy people have to share that shy person with the world—and are sometimes hurt by it—it’s very weird emotionally.”
Blake admits the night before interviews she has a fit of anxiety wondering how this person will portray who they think she is.
3 Blake Is Still A Part Of The Sisterhood
The little girl in all of us can rejoice because Blake and her co-stars from The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants are still very close friends.
Blake, America Ferrera, Amber Tamblyn, and Alexis Bledel have all kept in touch over the years since shooting the first movie in 2007.
“They’re three of my very best friends and role models. They’re so artistic, and they’re activists,” Blake gushed with Glamour. “They’re wives, and most of us are mothers. They’re producers, directors, and writers. They’re not limited. They’re unlimited.”
2 She Lives By Four Special Words
Throughout all the bad press Blake may receive or any of the harsh criticism she gets, she stays strong and carries on with her life as a mother and wife. According to Glamour, Blake lives by four little words; “This too shall pass.”
“It’s a reminder — if something is painful, it will pass. But also, if something is beautiful, knowing that this too shall pass makes you hold on to the moment. Savor it.” Wise words no matter what you're going through in life!
1 Some Of Blake's Greatest Advice Came From Her Mom
Blake and her mother Elaine Lively have a very close bond.
Her mother went through a lot of the same trials and tribulations that Blake experiences today with raising a family in Hollywood.
According to Blake, her mother taught her, “Don’t compromise one for the other. You can do both fantastically, and some days you’ll do both horribly. As long as you’re happy and give your family all the love and attention they need, it all sort of falls into place.”
Sources: Cosmopolitan, Romper, Glamour, E! News, USA Today