Celebrities are under a lot of pressure to look good 100% of the time—which, as we all know, is basically impossible (unless you’re Margot Robbie or Taylor Kitsch). Most of us don’t have a random dude tracking us from the bushes 24/7, so it’s fairly easy for us to get away with our stink-eye faces and bad hair days. It isn’t so for celebrities, making it very hard for them to maintain the image that is often presented to the public. (On that note, the author of this post is pretty much a troll before 10 a.m., so please steer clear!)
Bad days aside, there are some celebrities that are widely considered to be crazy hot on any given day. For the most part, celebrities are pretty good-looking. But in some cases, it just seems like a lot of lights, smoke and funky mirrors rather than a truly naturally mind-blowing beauty lurking under the limelight. And some of them just look better without all the hoopla.
Here are some famous faces who would not be as hot if they weren't famous.
While we suppose it depends on what you’re into, Pitbull a.k.a. Armando Christian Pérez has never really lit our fire. While he’s busy shimmying down the stage, and grinding up on his backup dancers, it’s easy to see how some might pin him as a sex symbol. But when you take a closer look (actually trying pausing the television and taking a solid stare at the screen), the singer isn’t really a striking dude. While his tan helps out a little, we can still totally see him as an accountant.
9 Khloe Kardashian
While the Kardashians are an undoubtedly beautiful family (including Khloe herself), they are a little amped up. It’s a little like highlighting a plain old sentence on a page (you wouldn’t notice it beforehand). Consider the transition of Khloe. We all know what she looked like at the beginning of the show Keeping Up With the Kardashians, right? Consider her today—she’s going blonder and blonder, with louder and louder outfits—and she seems to be moving up the hot list. But how much of that is natural beauty, and how much of it is it just a pure old magic trick?
8 Kristen Stewart
While she definitely has a femme fatale thing happening, Kristen Stewart is pretty resilient to any kind of “sexing up.” Probably the most awkward it-celebrity ever, she’s still managed to make it on the hot and sexy lists, even despite her mullet hairstyles and limited wardrobe (which we are fairly sure that she sports on purpose). Yes, there’s something about her—but we’re not sure that it’s so much hotness as it is just plain old mystery.
7 Reese Witherspoon
Super adorable? Yes. Hot? Hmmmm. Reese Witherspoon the perfect example of that all-American girl-next-door, which makes it a little more difficult to peg her as a sex symbol. Since Legally Blonde, we still can’t get her voice out of our heads—it’s kind of like that annoying little angel on your shoulder. Yes, we know that she tried to rile things up by getting rowdy with a couple of police officers a few summers ago, but we just don’t buy it. She’ll never be wild enough to have a smoldering sex appeal, but she’s definitely sweet enough to melt your heart.
6 Katy Perry
She’s like a pack of bubble gum. That’s probably the first thought that comes into your mind when the name Katy Perry pops (pun intended) up. She definitely put a fun mental image into the minds of most boys when she launched her breakout song “I Kissed a Girl” back in 2008, but this girl is really just sporting a lot of super loud makeup, giving her a pretty hot aura. But a natural mind-blowing beauty? The jury is still out of that one. But she does bear a marked resemblance to brunette Barbie—so that might be it.
5 Renee Zellweger
Honestly, maybe it’s just because of the plastic surgery that she (ahem) never had. It’s not the Bridget Jones’ weight thing, either, because who cares, really? It just always kind of looks like she’s squishing up her face for the camera—or maybe she’s just really uncomfortable and the paparazzi just keeps getting her on an off day. While she’s a sure-fire beauty, she’s really not so much a sex symbol as she is simply just a nice-looking girl.
4 Benedict Cumberbatch
While he’s an uber-talented actor, and definitely has a little aura of mystery about him (tall, British, whatever), there’s something about him that is a little reminiscent of Lord Voldemort. And kind of like #3, little can be done after that Harry Potter association is made. So basically, he’s handsome, but in a strange way—which is why he deserves a spot on this list, he wouldn't be 'hot' if he wasn't famous.
3 Tom Cruise
For those who were around in the eighties, Tom Cruise probably still lights your fire. But for some people, something happened after he took a leap onto Oprah’s couch on that fateful day in 2005, fist-pumping the air over Katie Holmes. Or maybe it had something to do with his advocacy for Scientology. But even though he doesn’t seem to age (really, at all), Tom Cruise just wouldn't be the sex symbol had he not had those notable film roles and wasn't rich and famous.
2 Ed Sheeran
While he does seem like such a sweetheart, there’s something about his resemblance to Ron Weasley that gets us thinking about the Harry Potter franchise, which eliminates any sort of sex-symbol possibility (except for Emma Watson, who might actually be magical). His lyrics are definitely heart-warming, which is probably why his audiences consist of massive gatherings of preteens, but he isn’t the typical hot dude, with his pale skin and friendship bracelets.
1 Paris Hilton
Aside from the fact that she’s an heiress and gained a large part of her notoriety from a half-hearted sex tape, would you know who she is? Including the fact that she’s stuck in duck-face mode 99% of the time, nothing about her seems natural. Yes, yes, the whole blonde hair, blue eye aesthetic has its appeal, but not in her case. But then again, maybe we’ve just seen too much of her.