It’s impossible not to love Katy Perry. She’s pop royalty, a successful businesswoman, a philanthropist, a lovely soul, and a heck of a lot of fun. Even out of the limelight, when she’s in her unguarded moments, she’s beautiful. Just the sight of her natural face, without makeup, turns us all into trembling poets. Which is why there’s no other way to describe the following photos except with a thesaurus and some very flowery prose. If William Wordsworth were alive to see her, this is what he’d say. You will not believe your eyes when you see #19!
1. Rockin’ a Hoodie
Incredible. Now, we don’t know what the hell’s going on with this photo. Our best guess is that she’s eaten a lemon, then been challenged to a rap battle on her way to rehab. What’s incredible is that she’s still killing it. She’s destroyed that lemon, is about to send Eminem home in tears, and is off to rehab not to check in, but to cure everyone in it. That’s the power of her unconcealed beauty.
Wonderful. She almost looks like a different person, far away from the layer of showbiz and the troubles of the world. Ready to do a show, ready to rock that sparkly dress, ready to just be her ever-loved self. She’s happy, and that’s just the way we like her.
3. On the Radio
Heart-melting. Behind the mic, she doesn’t need nothing to cover up. She’s comfortable. She’s got her voice, and that face, and she’s beaming out across the world, melting the heart of that grizzled shock jock across the desk and everyone tuning in. We’re puddles, Katy. We’re yours.
4. In Bed
Luminous. And not just from the flash of the camera phone. It’s like she’s lit from within by some inner fire, and all it wants to do is light up the world. Sure, she might look either sad or confused in this photo, but without makeup there’s no way to hide that glow.
5. With Blue Hair
Striking. You’d usually use it to describe someone who’s got a huge nose, but in Katy’s case it’s compliment all the way. Who knows why she’s gone for blue hair. Was it a dare? A run in with the Cookie Monster? Or is she a My Little Pony in disguise? With that face, though, everything works.
6. Up Close and Personal
Effulgent. We don’t even know what the word means, but Katy’s got to be it. It’s probably a word that Shakespeare made up in one of his plays. We can just imagine him now, hunched over his desk, stricken with writer’s block until someone hands him this picture of Ms. Perry. “Aha!” he says. “Effulgent!”
Radiant. Like a young star (which she is), shining down on us from the heavens (which, thankfully, she isn’t). Full of the light-hearted fun and endless summer of youth, and in a dress that seems to be made purely from lollipops, she’s the perfect advertisement for a time which we all wish we could revisit.
Gorgeous. She’s stepped directly out of the shower and on to the red carpet, with no time for the mirror, but it doesn’t matter. In fact, she’s all the better for it. It’s a rare creature that can make wet, messy hair look so good, and Katy Perry is one of them. Don’t smile so awkwardly, Katy. You’ve pulled off the impossible.
9. Getting Wet
Beautiful. Which is probably how she was going to describe the fart she’s trying to push out, before those darn meddling cameras bust in on her private moment. You’ve gotta give the paparazzi one thing, though: they’ve captured her perfectly. The play of shadows, the arch of the eyebrows – that’s classical beauty, right there.
10. Trying On Wigs
Untouchable. And yet someone is daring to. Katy (or that dude in the background) doesn’t look happy about it, but they’re just going for it. How… how did she get this sacred privilege? What does a person have to do to get their hand that close to Katy’s perfect face? Do you need a bribe? Security clearance? A royal family? Tell us. Now.
Natural. You might think we’re either being lazy or insulting, but there’s no other way to describe this candid moment. And it’s definitely a compliment. She’s as comfortable as that flannel shirt she’s wearing, and excited about a couple of relaxing hours in front of the tube. Our invite must have been lost in the mail.
Dazzling. We know, we know. It’s a pretty odd way to describe someone who’s just kicking back in front of the couch. But consider this. Who else could be so dazzling, so awesomely bright, that they can face off with the sun itself? No-one, that’s who. No wonder the sun’s always wearing shades – it has to look down on Katy Perry.
13. Resting Her Head
Magical. It’s the only real explanation. How else could she look so amazing, day in, day out, unless she had some kind of wizarding powers? Look at her here. She’s clearly exhausted from studying transmogrification all day and trying to work out how to turn her haters into loser turnips. If you asked us, we’d give her work an A+.
14. Wearing a Sweater
Raw. Let’s face it – it’s the word we’ve been searching for this whole time. That’s Katy Perry without makeup. Raw. Raw, unsullied beauty. Raw emotions. Raw, searing light. Everything fresh and pure and good, before it’s been put through this crappy blender we call life. Whatever you’ve got, Katy, keep doing it.
15. With Short Hair
Cute. There’s no other way to describe the short-haired Katy. Like the teenage dream of her song, she looks like that punk-rock chick we wish we had dated way back in the day. There’s the fringe and that impish smile, and the bright blue eyes that plumb the depths of your soul. My kingdom for a time machine.
16. With Messy Pink Hair
Powerful. The only way to describe both this wonderful woman and the emotions that go through us when we see her. Ridiculous glasses, questionable choice of hair color, no makeup. And yet every time, we’re caught off guard by her simple beauty. It’s like a punch to the gut. A lovely, warm, velvety punch.
17. Plucking Eyebrows
Adorable. It’s rarely an adjective that you’d use on someone working out their hair issues, but she somehow manages to pull it off. We don’t quite know why she can’t do it herself, or who that giant hand actually belongs to, but Katy doesn’t care. She looks relaxed, smooth, confident. Adorable.
18. In Hiding
Fantastic. As in, Fantastic Katy and Where to Find Her. It’s a little hard with all that hood and sunglasses, but we swear she’s in there somewhere. Just look for a killer pout and some glorious cheekbones, and if you discover some seriously skeptical eyebrows, you’ve gone too far. Keep looking – there’s treasure at the end.
19. Before and After
Lovely. It’s good we’ve got this photo in the list, since you might have forgotten exactly what Katy actually looks like with makeup on. The short answer? Lovely. The long answer? She looks lovely no matter what she’s got on her face. Even if it’s nothing. Even if it’s a strange tribal headband.
20. Wearing A Beanie
Heavenly. Like a snow angel, a vision that’s descended from some frosty heaven to outshine us mere mortals. Yes, an angel that’s wearing stuff that her gran knitted her for Christmas, but an angel nonetheless. There’s also a little bit of lipstick there, but we can forgive that, too.
21. In A Bikini
Mesmerizing. Do you know where that word comes from? It comes from Franz Mesmer, an 18th century physician who laid the groundwork for hypnosis with something he called animal magnetism. Nowadays, it’s achieved with some dangling object swaying back and forth, but if you’ll look further up you’ll find that Katy’s face has just the same effect.
22. Deep in Conversation
Stunning. It’s hard to know how you could actually hold a conversation with Katy Perry. Look closely at the photo, and you’ll notice that even Katy herself has averted her eyes. She’s afraid of seeing her own reflection in those sunglasses and totally freezing up. Of being so stunned by her own looks that she can’t say a single word. She’s that dangerous.
23. With a Baby
Spectacular. Just look at the baby’s reaction. He (or she) hasn’t been in this world for very long, but it already knows that it’s seen enough beauty to last a lifetime. Forget the miracle of birth, this baby’s thinking. It’s a miracle that I get to be held by this pop goddess. Please, change my diapers again.
24. On A Cold Night
Enchanting. Even pale-faced and rugged up, she stops the world with her natural style and endless grace. We’re caught in her spell. Time freezes and beside her beauty, we seem to age quickly and unnaturally. Into a mystical twilight realm we’re thrown, a domain where she commands us all. Also, she’s super hot.
Eye-catching. Like the sudden movement of some exotic animal, or a brightly-colored bird bursting from a tree. You’ve been waiting in one spot for hours, and suddenly you see it. It’s incredible. It’s once-in-a-lifetime. It’s Katy Perry.