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Colton Haynes: Talented Actor, LGBTQ Icon, and More

As a longtime fan who has followed Colton Haynes‘ career from the beginning, I‘ve loved witnessing his rise to stardom and activism. Here‘s an in-depth look at the brilliant actor and inspirational human being that is Colton Haynes.

Vital Stats

Full Name: Colton Lee Haynes
Birthday: July 13, 1988
Birth Place: Andale, Kansas, United States
Age: 35
Height: 5‘ 9"
Net Worth: $4 million
Relationship Status: Single
Social Media: Twitter

Early Life and Background

Colton Haynes was born on July 13, 1988 in Andale, Kansas to parents William Clayton Haynes and Dana Denise Mitchell. He has Scottich, English, and German ancestry. As a child, Haynes‘ family moved frequently due to his father‘s occupational demands, living in Arkansas, New Mexico, Texas, and Florida. Haynes has described tumultuous early years struggling to fit in and find acceptance as a creative youth interested in performing arts.

From an early age, Haynes showed a passion for singing, acting, and dance. He participated in local theater, choir, and dance teams. In high school in Florida, Haynes was a member of the cheerleading squad, competing at national championships. He initially planned to pursue cheerleading professionally, but a model scout discovered him at age 15 in a local Abercrombie & Fitch store, shifting the course of Haynes‘ career.

Modeling and Early Success

After being discovered by a talent scout, Haynes began modeling for Abercrombie & Fitch, Ralph Lauren, and Kira Plastinina. Known for his classically handsome, boyish looks, Haynes modeled for magazines like Teen Vogue and Arena. He eventually relocated to Los Angeles in 2007 to pursue acting opportunities full-time.

Haynes made his screen debut as a guest role on the series CSI: Miami in 2007. The following year, he landed his first major role playing the antagonist in the Lifetime movie Always and Forever. In 2011, Haynes‘ big break came when he was cast as Jackson Whittemore on MTV‘s hit show Teen Wolf. His role as the cocky lacrosse captain turned werewolf quickly made Haynes a fan favorite.

Revelation on Arrow

In 2013, Colton Haynes joined the first season of Arrow playing Roy Harper, a street tough who becomes the vigilante hero Arsenal. Though initially a recurring role, fan fervor led producers to promote Haynes to series regular by the second season. Haynes‘ portrayal of Roy/Arsenal won over viewers with his character‘s compelling redemption arc from troubled kid to honorable hero.

Haynes received high praise for his action scenes and stunt work on Arrow, establishing his range as a physical performer. But equally impressive was his nuanced depiction of Roy‘s struggles with anger, loss, addiction, and the desire for justice. Haynes continued on as Arsenal for over 50 episodes until exiting Arrow in 2015.

Film, TV, and Music Video Appearances

In addition to his breakout roles on Teen Wolf and Arrow, Haynes has popped up in a variety of other film and television projects over the years. He made brief but memorable appearances on shows like American Horror Story and The Hills. On the big screen, Haynes had roles in San Andreas alongside Dwayne Johnson and the comedy Rough Night with Scarlett Johansson.

Ever the chameleon, Haynes has also played different characters in music videos for pop stars. Fans may remember his steamy love interest role in Taylor Swift‘s "Delicate" video or his cameo in Katy Perry‘s colorful "Teenage Dream." Haynes‘ charisma shines through no matter the medium.

Coming Out and LGBTQ Advocacy

In May 2014, Colton Haynes bravely came out as gay in a poignant social media post acknowledging his anxiety about judgment. While Haynes had never hidden his sexuality, he explained he was advised to stay closeted early in his career over fears it could limit roles.

Since coming out, Haynes has been honest about the pressure he faced and become a vocal advocate for LGBTQ acceptance. He‘s spoken openly about finding more freedom in both his personal and professional life after coming out. In 2016, Haynes announced his engagement to flower designer Jeff Leatham, though the couple later separated in 2018.

Haynes uses his platform to speak out on issues like marriage equality, discrimination, and LGBTQ youth homelessness. He served as Grand Marshal of the Pride LA Pride Parade in 2017. And in 2020, Haynes auctioned off artwork to support the Ali Forney Center for homeless LGBTQ youth, raising over $50k.

Mental Health and Charity Work

Beyond LGBTQ causes, Colton Haynes uses his celebrity status to bring awareness to other social issues he cares about deeply. As someone who has publicly struggled with anxiety and depression from a young age, Haynes is a vocal mental health advocate. He shares his own experiences with the hope of removing stigma and helping others feel less alone.

Haynes has also lent his name and time to plenty of other charities over the years. He‘s supported organizations helping kids in foster care, promoting animal rights, aiding people experiencing homelessness, providing disaster relief, and more. Haynes frequently auctions off autographed memorabilia or experiential meet-and-greets to raise money for charity.

In 2012, Haynes won the prestigious HRC Visibility Award recognizing his contributions to the LGBTQ community. And in 2021, he was honored at the Carousel of Hope Ball for his exemplary charity efforts and philanthropy over the years.

Fun Facts

Beyond his professional work and activism, there are many fun personal details that make Colton Haynes such an interesting figure. Here are some of my favorite quirky facts about the actor:

  • He has modeled for top fashion brands like Abercrombie & Fitch, J.C. Penney, Kira Plastinina, Ralph Lauren, and more.
  • Haynes loves Halloween and goes all-out decorating his home. He‘s known to give out elaborate gift bags to trick-or-treaters.
  • He has several tattoos including one on his chest reading "Take It Easy" as an inspirational reminder during tough times.
  • Haynes is an avid photographer and has had his work featured in Vogue, Vanity Fair, and galleries.
  • He‘s obsessed with reality TV like The Real Housewives and The Kardashians and live tweets episodes.

What the Future Holds

Still only 35, Colton Haynes continues to take on exciting projects spanning film, TV, and digital media. Recent roles include guest appearances on American Horror Story and Walker, Texas Ranger as well as roles in the films Triumph and Inspector Koo.

But even without knowing what‘s next, Haynes has undoubtedly already left an incredible mark on Hollywood. With his courage to live authentically and speak out on causes he cares about, Haynes has inspired LGBTQ youth, mental health advocacy, and charitable movements. While I eagerly await his future projects, I‘m most excited to see the positive change he continues to create.