The Oscar race may be getting ugly -- literally.

By Allison Hope Weiner
Updated January 23, 2004 at 05:00 AM EST

Now, we’re not disputing their acting talent. But after certified hottie Halle Berry emoted sans eyeliner or noticeable hair product in Monster’s Ball (right) and the luminous Nicole Kidman donned a large schnoz in The Hours — and both went on to win Oscars — we noticed a new trend. While male actors take on mental and physical handicaps to generate Oscar buzz, their female counterparts have discovered that the only thing the Academy loves more than a man who can write with his left foot is a glam actress who becomes at least slightly less glam. Here-with, Hollywood’s definition of ugly. (Never mind that most of us would kill to look like this on a good day.)

JENNIFER CONNELLY House of Sand and Fog Admitted to putting fuller’s earth (a.k.a. dirt) in her signature raven locks to tone down the natural lustrousness. And no lipstick? Quelle horreur!

CHARLIZE THERON Monster Gained 30 pounds, plucked her eyebrows (paging Anastasia!), and actually had to have liquid latex applied to her skin to get that leathery look that comes naturally to everyone else.

NAOMI WATTS 21 Grams Managed to get that post-addiction pallor just right by — gasp! — forgoing concealer and staying away from any wardrobe colors that could possibly flatter.

RENEE ZELLWEGER Cold Mountain With mussed hair, a smudgy dirt coating, and some extra weight, she was able to make us forget the ”Ooh, let’s count the vertebrae!” look she sported in Chicago.