Professional wrestling is one of the most grueling jobs one can put their bodies through. Not only is it physically demanding, it is also very mentally taxing. Wrestlers put their bodies through years of constant punishment, night in and night out, and they are in the ring despite the nagging injuries they might have. With this hard lifestyle being part of the job, the aging process is unfortunately sped up for wrestlers.
This rapid aging is contributed by injuries and mental distress. Another major factor is the constant travel and partying lifestyle that goes along with being a professional wrestler. It’s unfortunate, but substance abuse is also very common in the world of wrestling. Several stars battle addiction problems throughout their careers and in most cases, it's the cause for their rapid aging. For many wrestlers on this list, rapid aging can be attributed to their years of service in the ring, and by not getting the proper time to rest their numerous injuries, which they are now feeling the effects of years later. For others, it was in their post wrestling life that they developed depression from being away from the ring. So, here are 17 WWE stars who lost their looks.
17 Lex Luger
Waltman was tremendously skilled in the ring, which is the main reason as to why he was a significant part of the WWE and WCW. Though, even with all his success, Waltman’s life had spun out of control and if not for his good friend Kevin Nash, he most likely would not be alive today. Pac was a heavy user of crystal meth, and his addiction was so out of control that he injected meth in the bathroom minutes before his high profile X-Division Championship match against AJ Styles, in 2002. Waltman was reportedly so incoherent that he forgot the finish to the match. TNA fired him after the incident. From there, his drug addiction would continue and he would develop an alcohol problem as well.
Jazz was a breed of female wrestler who had brute strength and was dominant in the ring. She started her wresting career in ECW, but it was short lived as the WWE purchased the company a year later. Because of her unique skill set, the WWE expressed interest in her and she signed a two year contract with the company. Jazz had success in the WWE, becoming a 2-time Women’s Champion. She would then leave the WWE due to the creative department’s lack of ideas for her character. After a year on the independent circuit, she would return to the WWE and compete under the new version of ECW. She is now currently wrestling for Women’s Superstars Uncensored. Jazz was never one to have the model looks and wasn’t considered a “Diva”, though she still has some appeal. However, that has all changed.
14 Brutus Beefcake
13 Ahmed Johnson
Johnson had brief stints with the WWE and WCW. Although his time was short, he was a fan favorite and had some success. Johnson was the first African American to win a Singles championship in the WWE.
12 Jake "The Snake" Roberts
11 Dynamite Kid
10 Jimmy Snuka
8 Ric Flair
Ric Flair is arguably one of the best wrestlers in history and in his younger years, was considered one of the best looking male wrestlers of his time. Flair’s high octane lifestyle and his 40 years of in-ring work have put a strain on his body. Flair loves alcohol and he has been known for buying rounds of drinks for fans, and renting out entire bars for parties, so these habits have plagued Flair throughout his career.
Considered to be the face of the WCW, Sting was the cornerstone for much of the success of the promotion. He transitioned from being a California golden boy to a dark mysterious character. Sting is one of the main reasons as to why the WCW were winning the Monday Night Wars at one point in time (he has even been dubbed “The Franchise of WCW”). In addition, after the purchase of WCW by the WWE, Sting went on to wrestle for TNA, once again becoming a dominant star for a company. Nearly wrestling for 30 years and becoming a mainstay in the business, Sting finally entered a WWE ring in 2015. Although his time was brief, it was still impactful for wrestling fans.
Chyna is arguably one of the toughest and strongest women in WWE history. Her unique muscular physique was key for her success in the WWE, as the company used her in various storylines feuding with both females and males. Chyna is a one-time Women’s Champion and a 2-time Intercontinental Champion. After she was fired from the WWE, she worked sporadically for New Japan Wrestling. She would then leave the company due to her interest in venturing into the adult film industry. Chyna starred in six adult films winning two AVN awards, one for “Best Selling Title of the Year” and another for “Best Celebrity S*x Tape”. In addition, she has posed for Playboy twice in 2000 and 2002. She is arguably the most popular wrestler to transition into the adult industry. Although, over the years Chyna’s appearance has diminished drastically, and much of this can be attributed to years of substance abuse and bad plastic surgery.
5 Hulk Hogan
3 Scott Hall
Scott Hall rose to popularity in the WWE in 1993, by pulling off the brilliant character of Razor Ramon. He quickly turned into a fan favorite and became one of the top stars at the time for the WWE. Hall then left for greener pastures to WCW for a hefty guaranteed contract that made him one of the highest paid wrestlers at the time.
2 Bret Hart
1 Shawn Michaels
The “Showstopper”, “Mr. WrestleMania”, “The Heartbreak Kid”, these are a few nicknames Shawn Michaels has attained over the years, and another one that can be added is “G.O.A.T” (greatest of all time). Shawn was exceptional in the ring, and he had a skill for making his opponents look better than they really were. Michaels often delivered five star matches, and he won Pro Wrestling Illustrated's match of the year a record eleven times.
With his wrestling style Michaels took many punishing bumps, and as a result he suffered a severe back injury which forced him to retire in 1998. Post wrestling life was difficult for Michaels as he battled depression and substance abuse. Though, by finding God and becoming a Born Again Christian, he turned his life around and made a comeback in 2002 until ceremoniously retiring in 2010. Recently Michaels appeared at WrestleMania, and although he hasn’t aged gracefully, his physique looked great and well conditioned.
Sources: foxsports.com, bleacherreport.com, wwe.com
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