Even though many child actors win over the world’s heart at a young age due to how adorable they look, that simply isn’t always the case. Instead, some youngsters who become famous for their acting abilities are known for things like how captivating their personalities are and how mature they seem for their age.
Just like some former child stars have their lives sadly hit the skids as they grow into adulthood, the opposite can be true as well. For instance, some young actors who weren’t exactly gorgeous at the time have since gone on to look incredible as adults. With that in mind, it is time to take a look at this list of 15 formerly awkward child stars that grew up to look great.
15 Dakota Fanning
Undoubtedly a marvelous actor from a very young age, Dakota Fanning’s amazing work in movies like I Am Sam and Man on Fire made her a star. A very energetic and warm child whenever she appeared in public as a youngster, she still needed to grow into her looks and she certainly has done that.
14 Abigail Breslin
Made famous when she was spectacular in Little Miss Sunshine, for several years after that Abigail Breslin was one of the most successful child stars in the movie business. Cast as a kid that other pageant people thought didn’t belong among them for superficial reasons, these days Breslin looks like she could win any crown she set her eyes on.
13 Alyson Stoner
Able to turn heads from a young age due to her truly impressive dancing skills, Alyson Stoner appeared in several music videos and also acted when she was a kid. More of a tomboy when she was little, as an adult she seems to have embraced her beauty on the inside and out.
12 Michelle Trachtenberg
Chosen to star in the movie Harriet the Spy when she was young, by that point Michelle Trachtenberg had already landed recurring roles in more than one TV show. Typically cast as the kind of character that regular children could relate to when she was young, once Trachtenberg became a beautiful adult she often portrayed people who used their looks to their advantage.
11 Anna Paquin
At one point the youngest actor to ever win an Academy Award due to her work in The Piano, from the time she was a child it was obvious that Anna Paquin was a skilled performer. Always a physically striking person due to things like the gap in her front teeth, as an adult that is a feature that helps this appealing woman stand out among the sea of attractive Hollywood actors.
10 Danielle Harris
One of a select few child actors that became a so-called scream queen when they were little, Danielle Harris’ appearances in the Halloween movies made her a star. Perfect in those movies in part because she looked just like your average little sister or child, as an adult she has become an uncommon beauty.
9 Elle Fanning
At one point known as the younger sister of Dakota, Elle Fanning eventually stood out in her own right when she appeared in movies like Babel and Somewhere as a kid. No matter how likable she was as a child, there is no denying that she looked a little bit awkward but as an adult, we could easily imagine her finding success as a model if she wasn’t focused on acting.
8 Kristen Stewart
Truly turned into a child star for the first time when she starred in Panic Room, Kristen Stewart’s acting in that movie stood out for all the right reasons. Even though Stewart often played the kind of characters that would prefer to stay in the background as a kid, now that she is an adult she is such a gorgeous woman that she can’t hide it.
7 Josh Peck
Best known for his comedic timing, Josh Peck’s childhood years starring in Drake & Josh helped him to earn a loyal fan following that has stuck with him ever since. As those who’ve paid attention to his life are aware, Peck once was a heavy youngster but now he has movie star good looks while seemingly still retaining his kind spirit.
6 Matthew Lewis
When Matthew Lewis was cast as Neville Longbottom in the Harry Potter films, there was no doubt that he was chosen in part because he looked like the type of kid who always was down on his luck. Fortunately for him, as an adult, he has become such a handsome looking fellow that the change almost seems too good to be true.
5 Keisha Knight Pulliam
Back when The Cosby Show began, the sitcom’s youngest star Keisha Knight Pulliam had adorable interactions with her co-stars because of her incorrigible spirit. As fans of that show witnessed over the years, Pulliam went through her awkward teen years during her time on the series but what they may not know is that she has since grown into a radiant woman.
4 Nicholas Hoult
Absolutely extraordinary in About a Boy, Nicholas Hoult was so believable as a picked on youngster who always looked strange in that film that it was impossible not to root for his character. Still, someone that comes across as a sensitive and lovable dude as an adult, the main difference is that Hoult also is a suave and good-looking person these days.
3 Bonnie Wright
First chosen to play Ginny Weasley at a very young age, Bonnie Wright fit the role of the little sister that goes ignored by her brother’s friends to perfection. Amazingly enough, she went from being a pale and awkward looking youngster to being a vibrant woman which played into the fact that Harry Potter eventually grew to be smitten with her character.
2 Jerry O’Connell
One of four actors chosen to play one of the main characters in the cinematic classic Stand by Me, with that performance Jerry O’Connell solidified his place in Hollywood history. Far from done, however, he went from being an overweight kid to a dashing adult who has landed the lead role in a number of movies and the TV show Sliders.
1 Taylor Lautner
Due to the fact that Taylor Lautner is best known for his Twilight character, many people may have forgotten that before landing that role he made a living as a successful child actor. Remembered for playing a ripped and handsome werewolf in the Twilight films, it is a good thing his face filled out because as a kid his nose and forehead didn’t fit his face.