AceShowbiz - The trophies at such awards-giving events as the Academy Awards, Emmy Awards and Grammy Awards are not the only great honor that celebrities can earn with their hard works and popularity in the show business. With public consensus, a star can be named a sex symbol that will undoubtedly boost one's marketing quality.
Of course, there has to be some points that make a person be considered worthy enough for the title. Whether it's someone's physical appearance, mind-blowing works or unexplainable charm, it has be to be approved by majority of the fans to be sexually attractive.
But in some cases, these lucky celebrities who have been seen as sex icons strongly disagreed with the mass opinion. Not only they're too humble to acknowledge they're sex symbols, but sometimes they also find the status uncomfortable.
Respecting their requests to be seen in a different light, here's a number of celebrities who have rejected the notion of being a sex symbol and why they don't like it.
The global success of "Titanic" and his hot sex scene with Kate Winslet in the movie earned Leonardo DiCaprio the status as a sex symbol since late 1990s. But he never wanted it. Years later, when he saw Zac Efron grew to become a heartthrob, the Oscar-winning actor was more than willing to pass the torch to the younger star.
"I look at young Zac Efron and think 'Go get it pal, leave me in peace,' " the "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" star told Fox News in 2008. "I was never happy with the teen idol tag at all - never wanted to be a sex symbol or all that stuff - it was the work that appealed to me. Really nothing else."
With her acting career that has spanned more than five decades, Dame Helen Mirren isn't only respected in the industry, but is also called a sex symbol. Instead of being blown away with the title, the 75-year-old actress said she did not agree that she's a bombshell, but as she grows older she no longer cares about how people label her either.
She told Woman magazine in May of this year, "I don't agree that I'm a sex symbol. The great thing about getting older is that you get over all that. You tend to think, 'Sex symbol? What the f**k does that mean?' " Admitting it's "great and I'm not knocking it," she noted, "It's a fabulous part of life - but it's only a part, it's not everything. So I'll take it, I'm not going to argue with it. But I'm not going to pay attention either."
Some women regard men who are skillful in the kitchen are sexy and that's perhaps how Paul Hollywood earned his title. The English chef doesn't have to pose sexily or is featured in a hot scene, but he can set the pulse racing whenever he makes appearance on baking competition show "The Great British Bake Off". But the 54-year-old chef strongly disagreed with this opinion.
"I'm no sex symbol, you should see me in the morning," he argued when asked about what it's like to be one. Admitting that he gets at least one marriage proposal a week due to his popularity, the one-time divorcee explained how people's attention to him sometimes makes him feel uncomfortable, "It's very flattering - but I'm just a normal fat bloke from the north. I find it embarrassing just going to a swimming pool, because I get stared at."
With his deep voice and strong jawbone that made him a perfect fit for the Batman role in Christopher Nolan's trilogy, Christian Bale undoubtedly deserved the sex symbol sash. But "The Dark Knight Rises" didn't seem to be impressed at all with the status.
"Who isn't one these days?" he scoffed at the question about his then-newly-cemented "pin-up" status in 2008. Suggesting that there's no value whatsoever in the status, he cynically added, "All you have to do is stand on this side of the red carpet and you’re called a sex symbol. There’s no more to it than that."
Clive Owen first rose to prominence through his lead role on British TV series "Chancer" and that same work earned him the title as a sex symbol. Despite the so many opportunities that have come to him since his rise in popularity, the 55-year-old actor didn't think the status is something to be thankful for. "I don't know about that," he said in a 2019 interview when asked about being a sex icon.
"Honestly, I think you're a weird actor and a weird person if you ever really look at yourself in that way," he explained. Believing that it comes naturally to "anybody who has a lead part in a television show," he added that the era has been long over to him, "They're gonna get attention, they just are. It happened to me. It was a long time ago."
Smart and being blessed with good genes both on screen and in real life, George Clooney has been named a sex symbol since his "ER" fame. So strong his charm is that he ranked No. 1 on TV Guide's "50 Sexiest Stars of All Time" in 2005 and was named PEOPLE's Sexiest Man Alive not just once, but two times.
But after years of possibly benefiting from the title, the 59-year-old actor wanted to get rid of his sex symbol image by giving up romantic roles. "The guys who survive for years in this business find a way to get out of that box," he said in 2005. "The master of it all is Paul Newman. I'd like to change like he has," he continued, "I don't want to be 60 and doing love scenes with 35-year-old actresses."
With sultry roles in "Dark Angel", "Sin City" and "Into the Blue", Jessica Alba quickly became one of sex icons in Hollywood, but she was too young and too innocent to enjoy it. In a 2016 interview with InStyle, she admitted that she was far less thrilled about the physical accolades she garnered as a starlet.
"My sexuality made me very uncomfortable," she told the magazine. The Honest Company creator, who was once named PEOPLE's most beautiful and ranked No. 1 on Maxim's Hot 100 list recalled, "I remember my first Maxim shoot, they were telling me to pose a certain way, and I was like, 'Agh! I'm 19. I'm a virgin. I don't even know how to do that.' It was so awkward."
Rising to fame as a member of One Direction, Harry Styles shed his image as a nice-looking young boybander to become a hot and mysterious man when he started his solo career in mid-2010s. But being a sex symbol was apparently not what the Redditch-born star tried to achieve with this change of style.
Finding it "so uncomfortable," the 26-year-old singer shared during an appearance on Zane Lowe's Apple Music's Beats 1, "Honestly, I'd say I try and think about it as little as possible, because it's a very strange, dynamic thing." The "Falling" crooner went on explaining why he disliked it, "It's also like a weird thing to think of about yourself. I guess the thing with like sex, in general, is like, it used to feel so much more taboo for me."
Unlike Harry Styles, Rihanna saw two different sides to being called sexy. "Every time I hear that it's definitely flattering, but also uncomfortable," she told News of the World's Fabulous magazine in 2011 about the status. She noted though, "That's not a priority on my list - being a sex symbol or being overly sexy. I'm just a normal woman. I don't really focus on being a sex symbol."
Hoping that people would judge her based on her personality more than her physical appearance, the singer-turned-entrepreneur added, "I think what my fans enjoy about me are my flaws and imperfections. The fact that I'm rebellious and do things my way motivates them to be individuals. That's all I care about, you know, people being themselves and living life to the fullest."
Ryan Reynolds may be confident enough to show off his buffed body in his films, but he's embarrassed to be called a sex icon. In fact, the Canadian hunk, who has been happily married to Blake Lively since 2012, found it humiliating to strip down for the camera in the hit romantic movie "The Proposal" (2009).
"If you take any of that seriously, you need to be euthanized, ASAP," he told Entertainment Weekly about how he sees his sex symbol status. "There are moments when you can use that your advantage. But it's really embarrassing. I think I fear more than anything just sounding like a complete a**hole when I have to answer that question."