We wanted to feature some of the most stunning actresses throughout the golden years of Hollywood, but we quickly realized that there were so many to choose from. So we came up with a few to get the ball rolling and we want your help with the rest. Who are we missing? Leave a comment below to see your personal favorite featured.
What list of most beautiful women of the early ’50s,’60s, and ’70s would be complete without the one and only Marilyn Monroe? She was the definition of high class beauty and sex appeal during her time and there wasn’t a man alive that didn’t have a crush on her in one way or another. Her film career only lasted about 10 years, but she’s still considered a major pop culture icon even to this day.
There wasn’t a teenage boy growing up in the 60’s and 70’s that didn’t have a poster of the incredible Raquel Welch from the movie One Million Years B.C., which was released in 1966. Many believe her to be one of the most beautiful women of all-time, and even still to this day Welch is still actively working in Hollywood.
Now this could be one you might not have hear of, I know I hadn’t. But one look at those beautiful eyes and I knew she had to be on the list, plus she played the very first Bond girl, Honey Ryder in the 1962 release of Dr. No. Interestingly, just five years later she appeared in the Bond-parody film, Casino Royale. She worked into the late 90’s but has since fallen out of the spotlight.
Miss Sophia Loren began her career at the young age of 15 in Italy where her natural beauty was immediately recognized at a beauty pageant. Her first international film, The Pride and Passion, was released in 1956 by Paramount. Her thick Italian accent only added to her appeal and before long she had a list of achievements a mile long, including an Academy Award, five Golden Globes and a Grammy.
Making her film debut in 1965, Jacqueline Bisset and her sparkling green eyes made a serious impression on studio executives all over Hollywood. Just two years later, she appeared in the James Bond film, Casino Royale, and the following year Bisset made an appearance in the hit movie Bullit with Steve McQueen.
Arguably one of the most popular movie stars of all time, as well as one of the most breathtakingly beautiful, Elizabeth Taylor began her career in the film There’s One Born Every Minute in 1942. In the 1950’s she was the most bankable star in Hollywood, anything she touched turned to gold. Her role as Cleopatra in 1963 earned her $1 million, which was a record for female actresses at the time.
At the young age of 15, French actress Brigitte Bardot made her modeling debut as she landed the cover of the uber-popular French magazine, Elle. Her long blonde hair and trademark smile helped her move into movies. in 1953 she was featured in the film Act of Love with Kirk Douglass. She retired in 1973 after starring in more than 47 films!
Jayne Mansfield is not only one of the most beautiful women of the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s, but she would put up a good argument for one of the most beautiful women of all-time. Her gorgeous smile, sparkling eyes and flowing blonde hair helped her become the dream girl of every man that came across her path. It also helped that she was the first woman of Hollywood to perform a nude scene on screen. Unfortunately, a horrific car accident took her life when she was just 34 years young.
Farrah Fawcett is arguably one of the most iconic and beautiful women in the history of Hollywood. Not only was she a brilliant actress, but she was incredibly smart in regards to show business. She was one of the first women to create herself as a brand; there were Farrah Faucet dolls, posters, and many other things. It also helped that she was the definition of the girl next door with that natural beauty. She even created her own hairstyle, called the “Farrah Flip”, that could be seen on pretty much every woman in the 1970’s.
Grace Kelly is one of the all-time beauties no matter what decade it is. Her career started in the early 50’s at the age of 20 when she started working primarily in theatrical productions. She soon branched into movies where she worked with famous A-list celebrities such as Jimmy Stewart, Frank Sinatra, and Bing Crosby. She later married Prince Rainier of Monaco and retired from show business to raise a family. Unfortunately, she passed following after a major car accident on September 14, 1982.
Once referred to as the female version of Elvis Presley, Ann-Margret took Hollywood by storm in the 1960’s. Both a singer and an actress, her beauty and talent were unmatched as her career spanned more than five decades. She starred in famous films such as Bye Bye Birdie, Tommy, and later in 1993 the hilariously funny Grumpy Old Men as the love interest Jack Lemon and Walter Matthau fought over. It was reported that she just finished shooting a movie Going In Style that is scheduled to air in 2017.
Jane Seymour was best known in the early part of her career for her role in the 1973 James Bond film, Live and Let Die. She is another woman that has a film and TV career that has lasted more than four decades. Seymour just finished shooting the movie Mistrust, which is scheduled to debut in 2017.
To be considered one of the most beautiful and iconic women of the golden age of Hollywood is quite the honor, and if anyone qualifies for that title it has to be Audrey Hepburn. Starting as a ballet dancer, she got a role in the Broadway play, Gigi. Two years later, she solidified her place in Hollywood history by winning an Academy Award, Golden Globe and BAFTA award all for her role in the 1953 film Roman Holiday. Hepburn is the only actress in history to win all three for a single performance.
Jessica Lange made her Hollywood debut as the blonde beauty along with her big hairy beast of a co-star in the 1976 remake of King Kong. She was a former model that went on to become an award-winning actress. Lange also co-starred with Dustin Hoffman in the critically acclaimed film Tootsie.
Who could forget the lovely brunette that co-starred in the famous film Smokey and The Bandit with the legendary Burt Reynolds? Sally Field started as a TV actress in the early 60’s, appearing in the famous Gidget series. With her big, radiant smile, Field didn’t hesitate to show her range as an actress going from comedic roles to very serious dramatic roles. Her natural beauty earned her a spot on many reputable lists of Hollywood’s most beautiful leading ladies.
This may come as a shock to some that didn’t grow up in this era, but long before Martha Stewart was showing the world how to bake the perfect cake, she was actually a model! When Stewart was a child, she had the lucky job of occasionally babysitting Major League Baseball star Mickey Mantle’s children. In college, she had a modeling job that paid more than $50/hr., which at the time was a significant amount of money.
Nina Mae McKinney
Miss Nina Mae McKinney just barely qualifies for our list because she made her final stage appearence in 1951. But with that beautiful smile, we felt as if she needed to be included. Most of her film career took place in the late ’30s, even earning the nickname of the “Black Garbo”.
Hollywood director, producer, screenwriter and breathtakingly gorgeous actress, Diane Keaton made her major film debut in 1972 when she played the wife of Michael Corleone in the famous Godfather trilogy. Keaton had the girl next door look that America and the rest of the world fell in love with. She went on to star in more than 65 combined films and TV series, even playing the voice role of “Jenny” in the recent Disney Pixar film Finding Dory. Keaton is currently filming a movie scheduled to release in 2017.
Faye Dunaway started her career on Broadway in the early 1960’s before making her on screen debut in the 1967 film The Happening. Later that year, Dunaway appeared in the gangster film Bonnie and Clyde. Dunaway has one of the most incredible smiles in Hollywood and she wasn’t afraid to use it. She has starred in more than 100 roles in either TV or films over her long, illustrious career.
Shirley MacLaine was one of the most sought after actresses in Hollywood in the 1950’s. MacLaine made her film debut in the Alfred Hitchcock film The Trouble With Harry in 1955. She immediately put herself on the map winning a Golden Globe for New Star of the Year. From that point on, she would be cast in major films up to and including time of this writing, according to reports, has just finished filming a new Little Mermaid film.
One of the few people that have ever achieved the “Triple Crown” of acting, Helen Mirren, also happens to be one of the most beautiful women of the 60’s and 70’s. The triple crown is winning an Oscar, Emmy and Tony all in the acting categories. Making her film debut in the late 60’s, Mirren would go on to have an extremely successful career that is still going strong today. Her role as the Queen in the self titled 2006 film won her all kinds of awards, including the Academy away for best actress.
Staring in her first film, The Last Picture, in 1971 the lovely Cybill Shepherd cemented herself as one of the most beautiful women in Hollywood. She also modeled before making her debut on the silver screen, and in 1966 she was named “Miss Teenage Memphis”. Just two years later she graced the cover of every major magazine as the model of the year.
Natalie Wood is most recognized for her on-screen roles in Rebel Without a Cause, West Side Story, and Miracle on 34th Street. Her girl next door look and gorgeous eyes made her one of the leading ladies of Hollywood. She went on to marry actor Robert Wagner, twice actually, then on to Richard Gregson, who was a producer.
Many people feel that Meryl Streep might be the best actress of her generation, which would really be saying something considering the competition out there. She first started on stage at Broadway before making her film debut in the late 70’s and by 1979 she had already won an Academy Award for best supporting actress for her role Kramer vs Kramer. She has more than 19 nominations from the Academy, more than any other actor or actress in history.
I don’t know that any other female on this list could claim the have been appointed the UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador like Susan Sarandon was in 1999. Sarandon has been gracing the silver screen since 1970 when she debuted in the film Joe. She even starred in the cult classic film, Rocky Horror Picture Show, filmed in 1975. For her work on television she has earned five Emmy’s. My all-time favorite might have to be her role of hardcore baseball fan in Bull Durham.
Lena Horne made a name for herself as a talented actress, singer, and dancer in the late ’40s. But her reputation as a political activist got her somewhat blacklisted by Hollywood for a short period of time. Not one to give up easily, she went back to her roots performing at nightclubs and other small venues.
If you were a fan of the Blaxploitation films, you will surely recognize this lovely lady. Her name is Judy Pace and she also played the character of Pat Walters in The Young Lawyers on ABC. He went on to win an Image Award for Outstanding Actress in 1970.
Julie Newmar is the lovely actress that had a very successful career both on stage and on screen starting in 1952. Some of her most notable roles consist of her performance in the Broadway production, The Marriage Go-Round, for which she earned the Tony Award. But it was her role as Catwoman in the hit TV series Batman in 1966-67 that really put her on the map, at least in the eyes of every teenage boy in America.
Sandra Dee first came onto the Hollywood scene as a child model and then slowly moved into working in TV commercials. By the time she was a teenager she had started to transition into films. She even won a Golden Globe Award for being one of the years most promising newcomers. She had a very public marriage to Bobby Darin that unfortunately ended in divorce.
This blonde beauty is Tuesday Weld who was an American actress that got her first break when she was just a child. But she soon matured into a lovely young lady and started playing more gown up roles. She won a Golden Globe f0r Most Promising Female Newcomer in 1960. One of her most popular films was Looking for Mr.Goodbar, for which she received an Academy Award nomination.
The lovely Dorothy Dandridge was the first African-American Actress to be nominated for an Academy Award in the Best lead actress category for her role in Carmen Jones. She was also a very talented singer as well as a dancer on top of being a beautiful woman.
This lovely lady is none other than Rita Moreno, the Puerto Rican actress whose career has spanned over the last 70 years. She starred in West Side Story as well as the King and I in the early stages of her career and could still be seen on television today. One of her greatest achievements is winning all four of the major awards, Emmy, Oscar, Tony, and Grammy. Only 12 performers in history accomplished this monumental status.
Now it could be argued that Cheryl Tiegs is technically not an actress and is considered to be more of a model. But she does have quite a few TV appearances over the years and considering that she’s absolutely gorgeous we decided to let her slide. Tiegs is often referred to as the first American supermodel and has graced the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue numerous times.
Pam Grier first made a name for herself in the Blaxploitation films like Foxy Brown, and The Bird Cage. She later starred in the film Jackie Brown, directed and written by Quentin Tarantino, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination. Many people consider her to be the first female action star for her tough-spirited characters she’s portrayed.
German-born actress Elke Sommer was spotted one day by a film director in Italy and immediately started appearing in on the big screen. She was also one of the most popular “pin-up” girls of the time as well as an international sex symbol throughout the ’60s.
This blonde bombshell is the one and only Olivia Newton-John who is both an accomplished actress as well as a singer/songwriter. She first made a name for herself in the music scene but branched into acting in the late ’60s. Her big break on the silver screen was in 1978 when she landed the role of Sandy alongside John Travolta in popular musical, Grease.
This beautiful brunette is Hedy Lamarr, who was a poular film star during the ’30s, ’40s, and ’50s. Born in Austria, Lamarr started out in the beginning of her career doing a few films in Germany. But while living in Paris she crossed paths with Louis B Mayer, who happened to be the head of MGM Studios. He apparently offered her a movie contract in Hollywood and the rest was history.
Sharon Tate is one of my personal favorites on this list. There’s just something about that natural beauty and drop dead gorgeous eyes. Tate was featured in a few small television spots but also appeared in several movies. She was married to film director, Roman Polanski. She appeared to be one of Hollywood’s most promising new actresses. But unfortunately she was brutally murdered while 8 months pregnant by Charles Manson’s family while her husband was out of town.
It’s hard for me to see Ms. Barbara Eden as anyone but that pretty little genie, named “Jeannie”, from the hit sitcom I dream of Jeannie and I know I’m not the only one. But she actually was a well-accomplished actress both on television, and onstage performances as well as being a singer.
Starring three of the most popuar films of the 1960’s-’70s such as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Graduate, and The Stepford Wives, Katharine Ross made a name for herself as one of the sex symbols of that time period.
Eartha Kitt was once described as the “most exciting woman in the world” according to Orson Wells. She was a very talented dancer, actress and singer that had a very distinctive voice which helped her earn top 10 status with songs like “Santa Baby”. You might also recognize her from her role as Catwoman in the third and final season of the TV series Batman.
Virna Lisi is an Italian born actress that made her Hollywood debut alongside Jack Lemmon in How to Murder Your Wife in 1965. According to reports Hollywood produces were searching for “a new Marilyn Monroe” and Lisi was the perfect fit with her blonde hair, blue eyes, and natural beauty.
Most of you will immediately recognize the ravishing beauty as the great Vivien Leigh, who famously played Scarlet O’Hara in the timeless classic Gone with the Wind. Leigh was an accomplished actress both onscreen as well as on the Broadway stage. She has gone down in history as one of the top 15 actresses of all time, and with a face like that also one of the most beautiful as well.
Josephine Baker was the first African American woman to star in a major motion picture back in 1934. Her career would continue over the next three decades as a world famous entertainer. She was also a known activist during the Civil Rights Movement and apparently was offered leadership after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
This lovely lady is Diahann Carroll, who was a popular singer as well as television and stage actress who received numerous awards for her work. She starred in some of the first films to feature casts consisting mainly of African Americans. Her natural beauty and gorgeous smile won the hearts of men all over the world.
You may recognize Barbara Bach as one of the beautiful “Bond girl’s” from the 007 film The Spy Who Loved Me. In case you’re one of the few people that aren’t fans of the James Bond films, maybe you’ve heard about a group of musicians who called themselves the Beatles. I say that because Bach married the drummer, Ringo Starr.
To call Ms. Jayne Kennedy just an actress is a major understatement. She was also a model, producer, public speaker, corporate spokeswoman, philanthropist, and the list goes on. Coca Cola described her as one of the “most admired women in America” as well as the one of the “20 greatest sex symbols of the 20th century” by Ebony Magazine.
Even though I was just a young kid when Goldie Hawn had just started to reach her stride in her acting career I always had a major thing for her. Now that has transferred to her daughter, Kate Hudson, who looks almost identical to Goldie and is closer to my age. The lovely Goldie Hawn has been nominated numerous times for her many roles she’s played over the years. But it’s that infectious laugh, beautiful eyes and gorgeous smile that made her an international sex symbol.
As a lifelong car guy It’s possible that Catherine Bach might’ve been my first crush due to my love for the Dukes of Hazzard. Bach of course played the iconic Daisy Duke with her long gorgeous legs riding around in the white Jeep. What most people don’t know is that she actually started her film career as one of the children in the Sound of Music.
Bo Derek started her movie career at the young age of 16 in 1973, but it was her role in the film 10 that was released in 1979 that made her an international sex symbol that lasted through the ’80s and beyond. She also had a poster of her in a swimsuit from the film that turned out to be a best seller.
The lovely Jennifer Jones was an American actress that won an Academy Award for her debut role in the 1943 film “The Song of Bernadette”. She was born with the name Phylis Lee Isley but was given the name Jennifer Jones when she was being groomed for stardom and it stuck. Jones would go on to star in more than 20 films over a 30-year career before retiring in the late 70’s.
Ms. Lucille Ball is one of the most popular female faces in Hollywood history maybe second only to the great Marilyn Monroe. Lucy started her career as a model in the late 1920’s, and throughout the 30’s and ’40s she ventured into radio and performing on Broadway. But starting the 1950’s she branched into television and very quickly became one of Hollywoods leading ladies thanks to her hit show “I Love Lucy”. She continued to work all until 1989 when she, unfortunately, passed away. Her sense of humor and natural beauty will go down in history as one of the greats.
Not only was Suzanne Pleshette beautiful, but extremely talented as well. She had a successful career as an actress in front of the camera and also did quite a bit of work as a voice actress in Disney film among many others. Pleshette starred in the 1963 Alfred Hitchcock film “The Birds” that launched her into stardom which would last until 2004 when she retired. That’s quite the career considering she landed her first onscreen role during an episode of “Harbormaster” on CBS in 1957.
Like many women on our list, Lauren Bacall started as a model before making her move to the big screen. It was 1944 when she would make her film debut with Humphrey Bogart in, To Have and Have Not. Bacall had a very distinctive voice and that with stunning good looks made her quite the force to be reckoned with.
No list of the most beautiful actresses from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s would be complete without Ms. Rita Hayworth. Those gorgeous eyes won the hearts of many during her career that spanned almost four decades. Fred Astaire once referred to her as “his favorite dance partner” during the two films they made together. The “love goddess”, as the press famously described Hayworth, starred in 61 films earning the reputation as one of the all-time leading ladies of Hollywood.