Number 50: Maggie Q
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50 most beautiful female celebrities

Number 50: Maggie Q
Why you know her: She’s appeared in everything from action blockbusters (Live Free or Die Hard) to art-house fare ( New York, I Love You) Why we love her: She’s passionate about PETA and was even responsible for making sure no real fur snuck onto the costumes for the Chinese film “Three Kingdoms.” Plus, check out her vegetarian recruiting poster! (Shizuo Kambayashi / For the Times)
Number 49: Anna Ivanovic
Where you’ve seen her: On the tennis courts Why we love her: There are plenty of beautiful tennis players out there, but she’s the rare woman who combines athleticism with her looks. She won the French Open in 2008. (Adam Pretty / Bongarts/Getty Images)
Number 48: Olivia Wilde
Where you’ve seen her: She was Dr. Remy Hadley on the eight-season TV show “House,” but you probably know her as Thirteen Why we love her: She’s a pretty face on television, but she’s also known for her charity work with Artists for Peace and Justice, Doctors Without Borders and her PBS documentary series called “Half the Sky.” (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 47: Taraji P. Henson
Where you’ve seen her: She played Brad Pitt’s mother in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” Tyrese’s wacky love interest in “Baby Boy” and the independent woman in “Think Like a Man” Why we love her: She’s beautiful but her talent has earned many awards and award nominations for an Oscar and Emmy, too. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
Number 46: Ashley Greene
Where you’ve seen her: On the big screen as a good vamp in the Twilight series Why we love her: She’s the bubbly, optimistic vamp in the Twilight series -- which is a nice change from the angst-fest we get from the rest of the fanged ones! (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 45: Holly Madison
Where you’ve seen her: On Hugh Hefner’s arm on the reality TV show “The Girls Next Door” Why we love her: Hef’s former “Number 1 girlfriend” has survived her breakup with Mr Playboy himself -- no mean feat in Hollywood! (Ethan Miller / Getty Images)
Number 44: Jada Pinkett Smith
Why you know her: Fans of the Bill Cosby spinoff show will remember her as Lena James on “A Different World,” but she’s also known for the voice of Gloria on “Madagascar,” Niobe on “The Matrix Revolution” and her TV show “Hawthorne” Why we love her: She’s married to rapper/actor Will Smith but has a love for rock with her band Wicked Wisdom. She can act, dance and is the free-spirited mother of child actors Willow and Jaden Smith. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
Number 43: Danica Patrick
Where you’ve seen her: Going very, very fast around a racetrack Why we love her: Patrick may be the best-known female auto racer in the world, and has the record high finish for a woman at the Indianapolis 500. (Jonathan Ferrey / Getty Images)
Number 42: Kim Kardashian
Where you’ve seen her: On her reality shows “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” and “Kim and Kourtney Take Miami,” and at every red carpet known to man Why we love her: She’s a woman who knows what she wants (endless attention), and knows how to get it. She’s also rapper Kanye West’s better half. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)
Number 41: Leona Lewis
Why you know her: She went from a singing competition to musical stardom Why we love her: After winning “X-Factor” (the British equivalent of “American Idol”), Lewis proved her singing and songwriting chops with the albums Spirit and Echo. Even famously grumpy Simon Cowell is a fan! (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)
Number 40: Meagan Good
Why you know her: You may remember her as the kid actor starring alongside Samuel L. Jackson in “Eve’s Bayou” or her later work in “Think Like a Man,” “Waist Deep” and TV show “Deception” Why we love her: She’s clearly drinking from the fountain of youth and can easily play the college girlfriend in movies like “Stomp the Yard” and turn around and hop stairs and fight as an undercover cop. She’s also giving the thumbs up for abstinence before marriage, which she did until she married her husband DeVon Franklin. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Number 39: Katy Perry
Why you know her: She kissed a girl, liked it and she sang about it Why we love her: The cheeky singer and songwriter knows how to make a splash, both with her music and on the red carpet. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 38: Freida Pinto
Where you’ve seen her: On the big screen in “Slumdog Millionaire” Why we love her: Pinto burst onto the scene with “Slumdog Millionaire,” her first feature film. People magazine placed her on their “Most Beautiful People List” and “List of the World’s best Dressed Women.” We couldn’t agree more. (Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images)
Number 37: Zoe Saldana
Where you’ve seen her: She was in the underrated film “Losers,” but she’s clearly no loser. You may know her from the bridge of the starship Enterprise in the new “Star Trek” reboot. Why we love her: She’s Lt. Uhura 2.0! We’re geek enough to find that unbearably hot. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 36: Lucy Liu
Where you’ve seen her: Don’t pronounce Ling with a hard “L” on “Ally McBeal” or she will give you the stink eye. Or, maybe you recognize her as Dr. Joan Watson on “Elementary,” Viper on “Kung Fu Panda” and Officer Jessica Tang on “Southland” Why we love her: She always makes being a rebel sexy.  (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 35: Blake Lively
Why you know her: She’s the leggy blond on “Gossip Girl” and nearly every red carpet Why we love her: Her Serena van der Woodsen is the resident wild child on the CW’s publicity-bait show, and she never fails to rise to the occasion. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 34: Camilla Belle
Where you’ve seen her: On the big screen and on the red carpet -- on a Jonas Brother’s arm Why we love her: She managed to make prehistoric humanity look pretty darn hot in “10,000 BC.” (Stefano Paltera / For The Times)
Number 33: Kaley Cuoco
Where you’ve seen her: On TV’s “The Big Bang Theory” Why we love her: Cuoco’s sweet Penny on Big Bang is the quintessential girl-next-store who sparks a million geekish fantasies. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
Number 32: Gabrielle Union
Where you’ve seen her: On screens both big and small ranging from “Think Like a Man,” Tyler Perry’s “Daddy’s Little Girls” and “Bring It On” Why we love her: We’ve adored Gabrielle since “Bring It On,” but our respect for her skyrocketed when she testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee, sharing her own horrific story of rape, in support of the Violence Against Women Act. She’s also the better half of Miami Heat basketball player Dwyane Wade. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Number 31: FLOTUS Michelle Obama
Where you’ve seen her: On the arm of President Barack H. Obama and in just about every fashion magazine and blog there is Why we love her: We haven’t seen this much fashion sense since Jackie Kennedy Onassis. FLOTUS has not only been a fashion icon but she’s the brains behind the Let’s Move campaign to fight childhood obesity. (Michael Loccisano / Getty Images)
Number 30: Taylor Swift
Where you know her from: Every single radio ever Why we love her: She’s cute as a button and she weathered many a storm this year. Some girls grow resentful of the ex-boyfriend but Taylor gets rich off of breakups. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Number 29: Kate Beckinsale
Where you’ve seen her: On the big screen Why we love her: “Underworld.” You think “Twilight” has sexy vampires? Just wait til you see Kate as Selene fighting vamps, werewolves and anything else that gets in her way. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
Number 28: Tricia Helfer
Where you’ve seen her: The SyFy series Battlestar Galactica Why we love her: This statuesque stunner made the idea of humanity being overtaken by robots bent on our destruction sound... not so bad, actually. (Araya Diaz / Getty Images)
Number 27: Christina Ricci
Where you’ve seen her: On movie screens since 1990 Why we love her: Ricci is fearless about taking oddball roles -- witness Wednesday Addams in “The Addams Family” and Rae in “Black Snake Moan.” Plus she embraced her amine eyes as Trixie in “Speed Racer.” (Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 26: Miranda Kerr
Where you’ve seen her: As a Victoria’s Secret Angel
Why we love her: She was the first Aussie model to be offered a contract with Victoria’s Secret, and she hasn’t slowed down since. Plus, she got naked to protect the cuddly Koala — who wouldn’t respect that? ()
Number 25: January Jones
Where you’ve seen her: On “Mad Men” and on the red carpet Why we love her: She’s Betty Draper(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 24: Alicia Keys
Why you know her: You’ve heard one of her many Grammy-winning hits on the radio. She’s also the wife of hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz. Why we love her: For all those hits, for piano playing, and most of all, for Keep a Child Alive -- a charity she co-founded that provides medicines to families with HIV and AIDS in Africa. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)
Number 23: Zhang Ziyi
Where you’ve seen her: On the big screen Why we love her: She kicked butt in “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” enchanted in “Memoirs of a Geisha,” showed off her tap-dancing skills (no, really!) in “Princess Raccoon,” and was the youngest person ever to sit on the jury of the Cannes Film Festival. Plus, she survived “Rush Hour 2" with her dignity intact! (STR / AFP/Getty Images)
Number 22: Rachel McAdams
Why you know her: She stole the hearts of both Ryan Gosling and Owen Wilson in “The Notebook” and “Wedding Crashers,” respectively. Why we love her: Have you seen her smile? It’s dazzling. We can’t wait to see her got toe-to-toe with Robert Downey Jr. in “Sherlock Holmes.” (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Number 21: Paulina Rubio
Why you know her: She’s all over the Billboard Latin charts Why we love her: We defy you to try to stop dancing to any of her hits. (Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)
Number 20: Keira Knightley
Where you’ve seen her: Movie screens, red carpets, magazine covers, you name it.
Why we love her: “Bend It Like Beckham.” “Pirates of the Caribbean.” “Love Actually.” “Atonement.” “The Duchess.” Is there any role Keira can’t play? (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 19: Sienna Miller
Where you’ve seen her: On movie screens (most recently in “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra”) and in tabloid shots
Why we love her: She’s unafraid of fashion risks, she seems nearly unflappable, and... well, she looks like Sienna Miller! (ADRIAN SANCHEZ-GONZALEZ / AFP/Getty Images)
Number 18: Stacy Keibler
Where you know her from: The competitive arenas of wrestling and dance
Why we love her: It takes guts to leap into the wrestling ring — and then leap onto the dance floor of “Dancing with the Stars.” Plus, there are her nicknames: “The legs of the WWE” and “The Weapon of Mass Seduction” (Michael Buckner / Getty Images for ELLE)
Number 17: Heidi Klum
Where you’ve seen her: On runways, in magazines and hosting “Project Runway”
Why we love her: Klum has been stalking the catwalk since 1992, but she’s hardly just a pretty face (and smokin’ bod). She won a Peabody award for Project Runway, for which she is host and executive producer. That’s the first Peabody award to a reality show. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 16: Penelope Cruz
Where you’ve seen her: On the silver screen, including an Oscar-winning turn in “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” and Anna in “To Rome With Love”
Why we love her: Have you seen Vicky Cristina Barcelona? How about all her roles in Pedro Almodóvar’s films? How can you not love a woman with that sort of talent? (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Number 15: Malin Akerman
Where you’ve seen her: Dr. Valarie Flame on “General Hospital”
Why we love her: She’s been in a comics-based action flick (“Watchmen”), a comedy (“Couples Retreat”) and a rom-com (“The Proposal”).  (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 14: Mila Kunis
Where you’ve seen her: On “That 70s Show,” “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and as the funny but heart-on-her-sleeve love interest in “Friends With Benefits”
Why we love her: Yes, she’s cute as a button. Yes, she’s super talented. But we really love her the most because 1) she’s the voice of Meg in “Family Guy,” and Family guy equals instant adoration, and 2) she’s admitted she’s a huge fan of “World of Warcraft.” (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Number 13: Tyra Banks
Where you’ve seen her: She’s been on countless runways, was a Victoria’s Secret model and is the producer of “America’s Next Top Model”
Why we love her: She knows all things fierce. She’s tapped into every form of entertainment there is, from acting (“Higher Learning” and “Love & Basketball”), charity work (TZONE Foundation) to singing and modeling. (Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images)
Number 12: Bar Refaeli
Where you’ve seen her: On countless magazine covers — including the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue.
Why we love her: The leggy beauty was the first Israeli model to appear in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, and she’s been on covers ever since. (Jacopo Raule / Getty Images for Michael Kors)
Number 11: Eva Mendes
Why we love her: She’s a gorgeous woman who refuses to fix what others may see as flaws — “I have the hugest overbite. It’s so big, my older brothers and sisters used to call me “Bugs.” I looked like a bottle opener. But I’ve never fixed my bite because it’s one of the things that makes me me...My best feature is my big hips. I’ve got some nice childbearing hips, and I feel very proud of them. When I was younger I thought they were too big. I wanted to be slimmer. But now I totally embrace them.” (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
No. 10: Charlize Theron
Why you know her: She’s an Academy-Award-winning actress.
Why we love her: Her Oscar-winning performance in “Monster” was called “one of the greatest performances in the history of the cinema” by critic Roger Ebert. Plus she’s passionately committed to helping the people of her native South Africa -- her foundation provides health services for some of the poorest regions of the country. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 9: Shakira
Why you know her: Her hips don’t lie -- and neither do her multiple music awards
Why we love her: Her music alone would be enough to make us happy. Add in her tireless work for children’s welfare and education and we’re smitten.  (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Number 8: Angelina Jolie
Where you’ve seen her: You either laugh, cheer her on or both while watching her as Mrs. Smith on “Mr.and Mrs. Smith”
Why we love her: As much as she loves kids, we should love her for that alone. She’s the right-hand woman of actor Brad Pitt, but she is a business woman and philanthropist all her own. Outside of acting, her charity work includes UNICEF, ONE Campaign and UNHCR.  (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 7: Rihanna
Why you know her: She’s all over the radio, the fashion pages and the news. And who else can manage to set trends with that bright red hair from her “Loud” CD cover?
Why we love her: Not only is her music unstoppable, but her spirit is unquenchable: In the aftermath of an assault by then-boyfriend Chris Brown, she weathered the media firestorm with poise and grace.  (Rick Loomis / Los Angeles Times)
Number 6: Jessica Alba
Where you’ve seen her: All over movie screens
Why we love her: Ever since “Dark Angel,” she’s known how to kick ass and take names. Plus she’s committed to her charity work, even offering to work for free if producer Bob Weinstein would make a hefty donation to Amfar.  (Frederic J. Brown / AFP / Getty Images)
Number 5: Salma Hayek
Where you know her from: Plenty of roles on screens both big and small
Why we love her: She’s not only gorgeous, but she’s funny as hell (did you catch her on 30 Rock?), passionate about improving lives (she’s an anti-domestic violence advocate), and smart as a whip. Who wouldn’t love her?  (Patrick T. Fallon / For the Times)
Number 4: Megan Fox
Why you know her: She’s the go-to geek-bait hot babe, and has appeared on countless magazine covers
Why we love her: This quote from The Times of London, when the reporter asked her if she considered herself a role model: “It depends on what your idea of a role model is. If your idea of a role model is somebody who’s gonna preach to your kids that sex before marriage is wrong and cursing is wrong and women should be this and be that, then I’m not a role model. But if you want your girls to feel strong and intelligent and be outspoken and fight for what they think is right, then I want to be that type of role model, yeah.”  (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
Number 3: Adriana Lima
Why you know her: She’s one of the hottest Victoria’s Secret angels
Why we love her: She’s one of the hottest Victoria’s Secret angels... and so much more! She’s deeply committed to her Catholic faith, often bringing a bible to read backstage at fashion shows.  (Alo Ceballos / GC Images)
Number 2: Scarlett Johansson
Why you know her: She broke big with Lost in Translation and hasn’t slowed down since.
Why we love her: She’s a star who doesn’t starve herself, doesn’t advertise her personal business, and stays out of the tabloids. Plus, she’s about to kick Iron Man’s butt as the Black Widow!  (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Number 1: Beyonce
Where you know her from: Music, movies, awards shows.... where haven’t you seen her? She’s a new mom of her daughter Blue Ivy and the wife of rap star Jay-Z. She was also given the title as People’s 2012 World’s Most Beautiful Woman.
Why we love her: So many reasons, but mostly because “Single Ladies” is a song we’re almost glad will be stuck in our heads for the rest of our lives. She’s also no stranger to charity work, with Survivor Foundation being the most well-known for her contribution to Hurricane Katrina victims.  (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
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