I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time thinking of any ugly celebrities. Actually, I can think of a couple, but the challenge is thinking of an ugly celebrity who isn’t a drug addict, alcoholic, or comedian. The most elite of the Hollywood elite - the musicians, the actors, the reality television stars - are all extremely attractive people. Some of them have natural good looks, others are the product of countless hours spent in makeup. However they achieve their beauty, there is no denying that the Hollywood elite looks ten times more attractive than the average person by the time they hit the red carpet.
If you ever feel insecure about your looks, it should comfort you to know that our favorite celebrities haven’t always been the chiseled hunks and great beauties that they are today. They went through puberty like the rest of us. They too suffered terrible bouts of acne. They, like you and I, were forced to wear braces or make do with crooked, often missing, teeth. Some were unattractive, some were ugly, some were straight up nerds.
Here, for your viewing pleasure (or displeasure) are 15 nerdy celebrities who grew up to be stunningly hot.
15 Rashida Jones
Rashida Jones may not be a star to the proportions of George Clooney and Nicki Minaj, but she is no slouch. A respected actor, she has appeared in multiple movies and TV shows and is currently starring in the television series Angie Tribeca. She is also an accomplished screenwriter and co-wrote the screenplay for the as of yet unreleased Toy Story 4. Unlike the vast majority of screenwriters, Jones is stunningly beautiful, which explains her ability to switch between on-screen and off-screen roles with such ease.
That being said, Rashida Jones’ beauty is the product of time. She was not too attractive in younger years, and as she is the daughter of celebrity parents, there is no shortage of photographs to attest to that.
As a child, Jones’ mouth was rarely full of teeth. She sported an uneven fringe which seemed to start halfway up her head, this may be explained by the fact that the little girl was ever so slightly cross-eyed.
14 Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron is one of those undisputed Hollywood sex symbols. The kind of person so beautiful, so downright attractive, that her name invokes images of Helen of Troy and Greek goddesses dressed in golden robes as they eat grapes from a similarly colored bowl. Her reputation is completely justified. Whether she is covered in makeup and clad in a ball gown or sporting a natural face and a pair of yoga pants, Charlize Theron is one of the most stunningly beautiful women in the world. It will come as a surprise then that the star of Mad Max and millions of men’s fantasies was one hell of a nerdy kid.
As a teenager, Charlize Theron had a pretty face, but it was constantly covered by a pair of glasses so thick they drew attention away from her flawless skin. Her hair was often tied in pigtails or bunched up on the top of her head as if she were a spinster librarian. Of her teenage years, Theron has said that no boy ever even looked at her.
13 Matthew Lewis
Harry Potter fans will undoubtedly recognize Matthew Lewis, which is ironic because he is practically unrecognizable today when compared to his childhood self. Matthew Lewis first began appearing on our screens when he was just five years of age. He achieved his big break in 2001 when he was cast as Neville Longbottom in the first film adaption of the Harry Potter novels.
In his first Potter appearance, Lewis was a portly little boy; the kind that people would bully in school and not feel bad about it. He had a perfectly round face which was covered in freckles and a pair of ears that would have looked more at home on either side of a trophy.
As the movies progressed, however, Matthew Lewis grew from a nerdy child to a certifiable hunk. Lewis is so confident in his body these days that he has even stripped down to his underwear for a photo shoot!
12 George Clooney
George Clooney is one of the few international male sex symbols in the world. He seems to have some sort of hold over every woman on the planet, whether they are oppressed housewives or millionaire supermodels. Even the straightest male must admit that Clooney is a very handsome man.
However, it has not always been this way for George Clooney. As a child and in his early teens, he was as dorky as any comic book reading, Gameboy playing, pimpled average Joe. His hairstyle could have scored him his first acting role as Coconut Head in Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide.
Like young Ryan Seacrest, young George Clooney suffered from poor eyesight and made the baffling decision to purchase a double bridged pair of glasses, presumably because he couldn’t see them.
11 Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift is arguably the most famous pop star on the planet. Through hits such as Shake It Off and Bad Blood, she has amassed an immense net worth of $250 million. She owns property around the world and a couple of years ago she even purchased her own private jet. Swift’s love life has been the focus of tabloids for years and she has frequently been mocked for her apparent inability to keep a boyfriend. What it is that makes Swift’s boyfriends keep breaking up with her is unknown, but it is not entirely impossible that they did so after seeing one of her childhood pictures.
Okay, that joke was a little mean and I do feel bad about it, but you really need to see a picture of Taylor Swift as a kid. One picture, in particular, shows the future pop star looking like a kid from a trailer park. Though whether as a kid or adult, it's clear she enjoys shirts that button up and have a collar!
10 Nicki Minaj
Nicki Minaj is one of the most famous pop stars in the world and has been for a couple of years now. Minaj is famous not just for her eccentric musical stylings, but for her risqué music videos. Minaj has worn a variety of unique, bold, and downright kinky outfits in her music videos. Her male fans, and even those who don’t enjoy her music rejoice in these various revealing outfits, which shows just how far Minaj has come from her teenage years.
As a youth, Nicki Minaj was far from the woman she is today. She suffered from low self-esteem, brought on by what she perceived to be underwhelming looks. She was incredibly thin, almost to the point of unhealthiness, having yet to develop the assets which would make her so famous. Her clothes were drab and often times ripped, which probably explains why she likes to dress so extravagantly now that she’s a success.
9 Nick Cannon
Nick Cannon is a jack of all trades. He is a rapper, a comedian, an actor, and an entrepreneur, among other things. However, Cannon is most notable for his marriage to Mariah Carey, which lasted from 2008 to 2016. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you this, but Mariah Carey is stunningly beautiful. She is the kind of woman you pass on the street and your day is immediately better because you know somebody who looks as good as she does exists. Because he managed to win the heart of such a beautiful woman, it should be obvious that Nick Cannon is no gargoyle himself.
The same can not be said about teenage Nick Cannon, however. Cannon was a fairly unimpressive looking kid with a dull face and a nose which was long yet so thin it looked as though he didn’t have nostrils. Thankfully his luck turned around!
8 Ryan Seacrest
There was a time when it was impossible to turn on your television without seeing Ryan Seacrest. The guy was everywhere. He was hosting TV shows, conducting interviews, and sometimes being interviewed himself. You don’t get as far as Ryan Seacrest on talent alone. While he is an extremely talented guy, he is also blessed with incredible good lucks. Actually, “blessed” may not be the right word, as Seacrest really had to put in some work to get the body he has now. As a teenager, he was less fortunate when it came to his appearance.
Teenage Ryan Seacrest was not an attractive kid. I know you’re not supposed to call any kid ugly, but this guy looked more like a meme than a real person when he was growing up. Not only was he overweight, he was cursed with crooked teeth, which required a very visible pair of braces to correct. His poor eyesight made it necessary for him to wear a very ugly pair of double bridge glasses.
7 Amber Rose
When Kanye West moved on from a relationship with Amber Rose to one with Kim Kardashian, many people felt that the rapper was downgrading. Now, when your ex-boyfriend begins dating one of the most sought-after women in the world and is still thought to have downgraded, you know you’re hot. And I don’t think anybody will disagree with me when I say Amber Rose is hot.
Very much so. However, she wouldn’t be included in this article if that had always been that way. As a child, Amber Rose looked like an odd combination of a carved pumpkin and the secretary from the cartoon adaption of Ghostbusters.
She wore a pair of thick plastic glasses which threatened to consume her entire face and had her ears pierced despite the fact she was yet to reach her teenage years. Like so many children, her mouth contained crooked teeth, each one looking as though it were trying to gain a monopoly of the mouth.
6 Russell Brand
Comedians aren’t supposed to be attractive people. In fact, it is the one profession in the entertainment industry in which being ugly or at the very least mediocre looking is a plus. Russell Brand, however, has managed to become one of the most successful comedians in the world despite having an abundance of good looks.
The rockstar comedian is the obsession of millions of women around the world and even managed to win the heart of Katy Perry, whom he was married to for a brief period. While Brand’s image has remained unchanged for a number of years, he is almost unrecognizable when compared to a picture from his childhood, or even one from his early teenage years.
During puberty, Brand carried atop his shoulders a head which was way too big for his body. On top of that head rested a bizarre head of hair which was short yet thick and rose from his scalp almost like the hair of Gerald from Hey Arnold!
5 Catherine Zeta-Jones
Catherine Zeta-Jones is one of the most respected actresses in all of Hollywood. Her work has earned her dozens of awards and millions upon millions of dollars. While much of this comes down to her incredible acting skills, we must acknowledge that a portion of Catherine Zeta-Jones’ success comes from her stunning good lucks.
The Welsh actress is considered to be one of the most naturally beautiful women in Hollywood and turned Michael Douglas into the envy of all men when she gave him her hand in marriage back in 2000. Many of the celebrities covered in this article suffered from crooked, often missing teeth when they were children. Catherine Zeta-Jones, however, did not.
Instead, the Welsh actress suffered the other extreme. She had a mouth full of large, sharp teeth and her two front teeth jutted out from her upper mouth as if she were a beaver. The brown school uniform featured in many of her childhood photos did not detract from this illusion.
4 Meghan Trainor
Meghan Trainor has a strange sex appeal. She has been defying conventional beauty standards since the day she burst onto the scene and has converted millions of men the world over to “curvy” girls. Whether she is accentuating her hips in a vinyl pencil skirt in "Dear Future Husband" or asserting her dominance in high heels and a duster in "No", Meghan Trainor looks smoking hot. But it hasn’t always been that way.
As a girl, nobody could have guessed Meghan Trainor would grow up to be the beauty that she is today. The early-teen Trainor was an all out nerd, with a mouth full of crooked teeth and a face decorated by freckles and pimples. Her weight made her the subject of harsh bullying, although she soon found a way to make it work for her.
3 Brad Pitt
Up until last year, Brad Pitt enjoyed a happy though much-publicized marriage to actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie. The couple announced their separation last year, to the shock of their millions of fans around the world. Despite being significantly older than he was the last time he was on the dating scene, Brad Pitt is unlikely to have any trouble finding a woman just as attractive as his ex-wife.
In fact, if history is anything to go by, the passing of time will have left Brad Pitt looking only more attractive than before. I say this as the childhood Brad Pitt looks absolutely nothing like the Hollywood heartthrob we have all come to know. Pitt was a nerdy kid, and boy did he look it. For much of his youth, he sported a head of hair that wouldn’t have looked out of place in a 70s sitcom. His lips were a little too big for his face and his mouth was almost always open when a picture was taken, giving the impression of a perpetually blocked nose.
2 Leonard Cohen
Leonard Cohen was the quintessential ladies’ man. From the moment he hit the big time with his laid back, depressing yet captivating songbook, he was the obsession of millions of women throughout the world. Right up to his death in 2016, Cohen was gallivanting with supermodels, charming them with an old world gentlemanliness and rugged good looks. His ability to wield words as a sword likely had something to do with the women, often times decades younger than himself, who were throwing themselves at his feet. It wasn’t always this way for Cohen, however.
His father died when he was quite young, leaving his mother to raise him. She often dressed him in the clothes of a much older man and Cohen was wearing suits before he had even entered his teenage years. His odd dress, combined with his love of books, did little for Leonard Cohen’s reputation among his school friends and it would be several years before he was given the respect he deserved.
1 Megan Fox
Megan Fox first hit the big time when she was 20 years of age. Following her first major role in the original instalment of Michael Bay’s Transformers, she was catapulted to the status of international sex symbol. She appeared in dozens of magazines stripped down to her underwear, and often times wore the same outfit - or lack thereof - in her movies. But just a few years prior to becoming a world famous actress, Fox was a massive movie geek, something reflected by her appearance. Although Fox has always had a pretty face, it was marred during her teenage years by a very visible pair of braces employed to fix her crooked teeth. She also didn’t tan too well and was generally as red as a tomato during the summer months.
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