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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Iowa chapter.

Many lists exist that rank the presidents in terms of their achievements or how well they performed in their job as United States President, but what about the presidents’ level of attractiveness? Others have made ranks based on hotness, but I did not agree with the placement in these other lists. Here is my entirely subjective, but correct, ranking of all 45 United States Presidents determined only by their physical attractiveness. I mostly looked at portraits of presidents while they were in office, so this is literally a rank of old (mostly) white men.


45. Martin Van Buren (1837-1841)

Looking at photos of him just creeps me out. I cannot get behind his wispy hair that connects to his sideburns and the bald spot.

44. John Quincy Adams (1825-1829)

He looks like a mean man, similar to a troll or gremlin I have to say. Again, the sideburns are not flattering

43. Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961)

I respect Eisenhower, but my respect does not stem from his looks at all. He reminds me of Red Skull from the Captain America movies.

42. Lydon B. Johnson (1963-1969)

It’s very unfortunate that he had to come after John F. Kennedy (who is much later on this list) because he just doesn’t compare at all. He gives me old mob boss vibes, but not in an attractive way unfortunately. 

41. John Adams (1797-1801)

He looks like he never lost his baby fat and from his portraits, he looks like an old baby. America must have been worried when he stepped up after George Washington because he is so inferior.

40. James Monroe (1817-1825)

He has a pointed nose and smug face that makes me think he’s up to no good. James Monroe has the perfect fact for looking down at people and I am not into it.

39. Zachary Taylor (1849-1850)

This president gives me mean grandpa vibes. The constant hat hair and scowl on his face do him on favors.

38. William Henry Harrison (1841-1841)

He has very prominent features that do not work well together. His protruding nose and bushy brows paired with his clump of bangs do him no favors.

37. John Tyler (1841-1845)

This man just looks very old and sickly. Also, points off for only getting the presidency because McKinely died 32 days into office leaving Tyler to take over and do a terrible job.

36. Warren G. Harding (1921-1925)

The only redeeming thing about this man is the fact that his eyebrows stayed dark and thick after the rest of his head when white. His brows and face structure make him look mean and uninviting still.

35. Gerald Ford (1974-1977)

Ford looks kind, but in the way where he’s so ugly he has to be nice to be respected. He looked good when he was younger, so points off for a big glow-down.

34. Donald Trump (2017- )

Orange isn’t anyone’s color.

33. Andrew Jackson (1829-1837)

He was a mean man and his face matches that. His hair gives me crazy scientist vibes, but emphasis on the crazy.

32. James K. Polk (1845-1849)

He would be higher on this list if he didn’t have an early form of the mullet. He also looks like every other president in this era, so points off for lack of variety.

31. James Madison (1809-1817)

Madison is just not it. I can’t pull out specific things I don’t like, I just am not attracted to Madison in his entirity. 

30. Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945)

He looks kind, but there’s nothing special about him that makes him stand out. Points off for being cocky by running for president for 4 terms. It may just be karma that he died before finishing his fourth term

29. Andrew Johnson (1865-1869)

It looks like he has a bowl cut with having the bangs, and it just doesn’t come off well. Also, he had step up after Abraham Lincoln died and his looks were just a major letdown.

28. William McKinley (1897-1901)

He only lasted as president for six months before being assassinated, but I gave him points off because he disrupted the trend of facial hair on the presidents. The seven presidents before him had glorious beards and mustaches and McKinley thought he could do the cleanshaven look. He couldn’t, and for that, I am not attracted to him.

27. George H. W. Bush (1989-1995)

The first Bush looked old when he wasn’t even that old, and just gives me creepy grandpa vibes. Again, there’s nothing outstanding about him either way, so that’s why he places in the middle of this list.

26. George Washington (1789-1797)

Big kudos for, you know, creating America, but points off for having wooden teeth. Washington was over six feet though, so points for that.

25. James Buchanan (1857-1861)

He knows his angles as he poses the same way in every photo (CEO of having a good side). I give him points for being the first (rumored) gay president and his fun collared shirts.

24. Ronald Regan (1981-1989)

I know I said I was only looking at photos of when they were in office, but I have to give points to young actor Ronald Regan. Age was hard on Regan, but he had a good head of hair for his entire life.

23. Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921)

He has a very memorable face, and I can respect that. Points off for being the official end to presidents with facial hair, unfortunately.

22. Grover Cleveland (1886-1889)

Big and beautiful mustache, but very basic compared to the surrounding presidents. A good twenty-second president

21. Grover Cleveland (1893-1897)

Cleveland again because he was ambitious and became the twenty-fourth president. Still had his big and beautiful mustache, but points added because ambition is hot.

20. Millard Fillmore (1850-1853)

He looks like a mean man, but there’s something about him that makes him stand out to me and put him higher on this list. Also, it’s hard to not be attracted to a man named Millard.

19. Rutherford B. Hayes (1877-1881)

His long and luscious beard make him an icon. How can you not be attracted to a man named Rutherford with a beard that goes to his chest? It’s impossible.

18. Calvin Coolidge (1923-1929)

There’s a picture of him with a top hat on and he reminds me of a dad. I don’t need to say anything more.

17. William Howard Taft (1909-1913)

A big man with a hearty mustache. He doesn’t look like a man that would smile a lot, but his chubby cheeks and his thick mustache make me overlook that.

16. Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)

He’s 6’4″.

15. Franklin Pierce (1853-1857)

He has some iconic curly hair and a smoldering gaze, but still has kind eyes. I’m into him.

14. Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809)

He really is the best of the presidential founding fathers, in terms of looks. I do not agree with Jefferson in ideals, but his face is cute.

13. Herbert Hoover (1929-1933)

He has the chubbiest cheeks and I love them so much. He just looks like a dad and I can respect that.

12. Bill Clinton (1993-2001)

This man has looked the same his entire life, and I respect his consistency. I have to take into considerating being married to Hillary Clinton and still cheating on her, so he does not make the top ten for this reason.

11. Richard Nixon (1969-1974)

I’m going to say that young Richard Nixon makes up for everything about old Richard Nixon. Young Nixon was a babe and I am willing to look past his older self for that reason only.

10. Theodore Roosevelt (1901-1909)

His nickname is Teddy, he’s an outdoorsy type, and he has a wonderful mustache. Those are the only important qualities I look for in a man.

9. Jimmy Carter (1977-1981)

He’s a peanut farmer and a country boy. He looks so nice and sweet, like the kind of guy you would take home to meet your parents.

8. George W. Bush (2001-2009)

He looks a little like his father, but he is much more attractive than the first Bush. He looks so kind and has a nice smile.

7. Harry S. Truman. (1945-1953)

I love a man in glasses and he is the glasses president. I’m a big Harry Potter fan and Harry S. Truman rocks the Harry Potter glasses so hard.

6. James A. Garfield (1881-1881)

He’s a ginger and has a beard that competes with Rutherford’s beard. Also, he reminds me of Garfield cat and that is only a plus.

5. Chester A. Arthur (1881-1885)

He has the most creative and unique facial hair of any president and he gets points soley for his style. I respect him so much for walking around with a mustache and a long double cheek beard.

4. Benjamin Harrison (1889-1893)

An iconic silver fox with thick facial hair into his later years. I am so into Harrison and his look.

3. Ulysses S. Grant (1869-1877)

War hero with beautiful facial hair. He knew that a beard worked for him so he worked that beard.

2. Barak Obama (2009-2017)

His smile literally lights up any room and he is such a beatiful man, inside and out. Also, points for adding some flavor to this very white list.

1. John F. Kennedy (1961-1965)

There is no explanation needed. John F. Kennedy is the most attractive president one everyone’s list and if he’s not number one on yours, you’re lying. He has the best eyes and smile and honestly, he’s the whole package. 

White House, Washington DC
David Everett Strickler / Unsplash


Molly is double majoring Journalism and Mass Communications and Political Science. She loves FaceTiming with her cat, drinking multiple cups of coffee a day, and saving the environment!
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