While there are some sad cases of the badly aged, celebrities tend to hold onto their looks—and whether that's a result of good genes, great skin regimens or surgical intervention is a debate for another time. Plenty of aging stars "still have it" (Sean Connery, Hugh Grant) and some look nearly as good as they did back in the day (Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Robert Downey, Jr., Demi Moore). But what about those freaks of nature who actually look better now than when they were fresh-faced and just starting out in the biz? They deserve a shout-out...so here are six who top our list.
1. Patrick Dempsey - Even though he got the girl in classic teen flicks like Loverboy and Can't Buy Me Love, young Patrick was kind of a dork. It must have been around the time he co-starred in Scream 3 (2000) that we took notice of him again, and then five years later he morphed into Grey's Anatomy's Dr. McDreamy. He apparently made friends with mousse over the years too, as that formerly out-of-control mop is now the most beautiful head of hair in Hollywood.
2. Penelope Cruz - Was it just us, or did Penelope seem a little, dare we say, homely when she first landed on our radar in 2000's All The Pretty Horses? We don't feel too bad for saying that because something's been happening with Ms. Cruz since then—she's grown exponentially more beautiful with each passing year. Now when we see Javier Bardem's new bride, our mouths drop open and we make that "aw-ooo-ga" noise.
3. Jon Bon Jovi - Some girls who remember Jon Bon as the hottest thing on two feet during the '80s may disagree with his placement on this list. But come on, we're grown ups now. We can admit that guys with ultra-long hair look kind of silly. Jon only got sexier when he cut his trademark long, shaggy locks. And while they may hurt our eyes, we can't look away from his dazzling white teeth. (And don't even get us started on that gravity-defying rear end.) 10 Old School, Still Cool Celebrity Crushes
4. Will Smith - We know that Carlton was supposed to be the dorky one, but the Fresh Prince wasn't exactly the hippest guy in Bel Air, either. Perhaps we thought so at the time, but now we can look back on the young Will and see that he wasn't too jazzy compared to his adult self. His transformation from silly rapper to sexy alien bitch-slapper has been nearly as fun to watch as the Fresh Prince meme popping up all over the Internet.