Happy 40th birthday, Eva Mendes. The gorgeous actress is an in-demand leading lady who’s co-starred with some of Hollywood’s hottest men—Denzel Washington, Bradley Cooper and Ryan Gosling, to name a few. And, of course, Mendes’ romance with Ryan sizzled off-screen as well: The pair have been dating for over two years and Gosling directed her in the upcoming thriller How to Catch a Monster.

Mendes is intent on using her celebrity to spotlight worthy causes, like her work with The Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit organization that provides legal representation to defendants and prisoners who have been denied fair and just treatment in the legal system—including kids who’ve been tried as adults.

The Cuban-American actress is also a coveted spokesperson: She’s the face of Vogue Eyewear, the cover girl for beauty site Violet Grey, and the spokesperson for Thierry Mugler’s Angel perfume. Mendes also designed her first capsule collection—ranging from vintage-style coats to vintage coats to costume jewelry—for New York & Company. To celebrate Mendes’ milestone birthday, see her best beauty looks through the years.

—Serena Kappes