Most Beautiful Women

Katy Perry has been named the world’s hottest woman.

The ‘I Kissed A Girl’ hitmaker – who is engaged to Russell Brand – topped the annual Maxim Hot 100 list for being “sexy and talented”, narrowly beating Victoria’s Secret model Brooklyn Decker and ‘Avatar’ actress Zoe Saldana into second and third place respectively.

Explaining her top ranking, the US men’s magazine said of Katy: “She’s the best friend you suddenly realize you’ve loved your whole life. The rad chick who taught you to skateboard and whistle and also looks unbelievable in a bikini.”

Making up the rest of the top five were ‘Gossip Girl’ star Blake Lively, and ‘Transformers’ beauty Megan Fox, while ‘Russian Roulette’ singer Rihanna, George Clooney’s girlfriend Elizabetta Canalis, actress Olivia Munn, socialite Kim Kardashian and model Marisa Miller made up the rest of the top 10.

Last year’s Maxim Hot 100 number one Olivia Wilde scraped in at number 20, while notable absentees included Beyonce Knowles and Lady Gaga.

Maxim Hot 100 Top 20:

1. Katy Perry
2. Brooklyn Decker
3. Zoe Saldana
4. Blake Lively
5. Megan Fox
6. Rihanna
7. Elisabetta Canalis
8. Olivia Munn
9. Kim Kardashian
10. Marisa Miller
11. Eva Mendes
12. Audrina Patridge
13. Amber Heard
14. Scarlett Johansson
15. Amanda Bynes
16. Selita Ebanks
17. Leighton Meester
18. Christina Aguilera
19. Bar Refaeli
20. Olivia Wilde

On the other side of the coin, Penelope Cruz has been named the world's most beautiful woman.

The 36-year-old beauty beat supermodel Claudia Schiffer, 39, and 49-year-old actress Kristin Scott Thomas to top the chart, which was compiled by fashion expert Sally Allen.

Sally spent a year looking at press coverage to compile the list, which also included Dame Helen Mirren, 64, and 75-year-old Sophia Loren.

She said: "Our top ten women are often the subject of spontaneous and unexpected press exposure yet always manage, somehow, to look great.

Sometimes they are caught without their make-up, on bad hair days, or in less than flattering poses, but their natural beauty always seems to shine through.

"There is no question in my mind that Penelope Cruz is a worthy winner. She was an undoubtedly pretty girl when she started her acting career at 16 but, 20 years later, she has matured into a particularly beautiful woman and a fine actress."

The youngest entrant was 34-year-old Charlize Theron and Sally believes the reason older females were included is because they get better with age.

She said: "As someone once said, the difference between pretty and beautiful is that pretty is temporal, whereas beautiful is eternal."

The list was compiled for clothing firm Wizard Jeans, with spokesman Anthony Edwards saying: "Women like Beyonce Knowles and Cheryl Cole are sexy and pretty but real beauty is something that comes from within and usually requires maturity. The days when women were considered past it at 40 are long gone."

Top ten of the world's most beautiful women:

1 - Penelope Cruz
2 - Claudia Schiffer
3 - Kristin Scott Thomas
4 - Queen Rania of Jordan
5 - Catherine Deneuve
6 - Dame Helen Mirren
7 - Charlize Theron
8 - Kate Beckinsale
9 - Natascha McElhone
10 - Sophia Loren

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