Charlize Theron has enjoyed the process of ageing.

The 39-year-old actress, who has adopted two-year-old son Jackson, admits she feels more comfortable with her looks now than when she was younger.

Speaking in Red magazine, she explained: ''I've loved getting older; I really have. That doesn't mean I don't have moments when I look in the mirror and find myself going, 'Oh my god.' But I'm much more at ease looking at myself now than when I was 20 and I had gorgeous skin and a fat, plump face.''

The blonde beauty moved to Italy from South Africa with her mother at the age of 16 after winning a modelling contract, but she wishes she'd appreciated herself more when she was that age rather than criticising her beauty because of the industry.

She said: ''I looked at myself then and I didn't appreciate any of it. Also, there was something about my beauty at that time that almost felt like it was waiting to be this age. I was so desperate to, like, have some kind of experience in my life, like not feeling that I came from the world of modelling. It was like I was waiting to look at my face and see life.''