An Idiot's Guide to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Emmy Rossum

Why on earth would you volunteer to pour a bucket of ice water on yourself and film it (besides using it as a way to show off your end-of-summer bikini bod)? To benefit charity, obviously.

Within the last two weeks, Instagram feeds and Facebook pages across the land have been filled with videos of celebrities and lay people alike engaging in a most curious behavior: pouring a bucket of ice on their heads. And while it seems most social media followers understand that it's somehow connected to charity, the whole thing is still confusing as hell. 

So, like, what is it? The challenge asks participants to dump a bucket of ice water over his or her head and dare others do the same or make a $100 donation to The ALS Association within 24 hours.

To date, the association has raised an unbelievable $4 million in donations — compared to $1.12 million during the same time period last year. It's safe to say this is one marketing campaign that works, despite the chilly, wet implications. The donations go to further the association's mission to find a cure for ALS while funding the highest quality of care for people living with the disease.

Below are a few of the boldfacers who have taken the plunge, such as Justin Timberlake, Emmy Rossum and Ethel Kennedy. Follow #IceBucketChallenge to see what other famous faces have participated in the campaign too. 


The Shameless actress looks great in her bikini and cutoffs while taking the challenge.

The "Heart Attack" singer rallies a crowd to watch — who rush to her aid with towels afterward.

JT truly is bringing sexy back while wearing a Pink Floyd T-shirt.

The Fault in Our Stars actor showed off his toned tummy, completing the challenge shirtless.

The Watch What Happens Live! host has a Real Housewife on hand to dump the bucket on his head.