Nick Lachey & Vanessa Minnillo Land in the Top 100 Hottest Celebrity Couples

(Source: Pacific Coast News) more pics » Vanessa Lachey (FameFlynet Pictures) Thanks to their growing family, Nick Lachey and Vanessa Minnillo have landed in our fourth annual collection of the 100 Hottest Couples.

They almost didn't make our list, but with a new marriage and a baby on the way, they shot up to No. 58. Lachey has been laying low since The Sing-Off was cancelled. He recently dashed hopes of a 98 Degrees reunion, as he's eagerly anticipating daddy duty. Minnillo had guest spots on 30 Rock and Hawaii 5-0 last year, and, who knows, perhaps she'll revive TRL while her man revisits his boy band roots. That, or she'd be great on a reality show about pageants.

What makes a couple hot? Well in the case of our list, we look at four criteria: Popularity, Success, Attractiveness, and Staying Power. Through a complicated system best described as "science," we come up with a score for each category and add the whole lot together to come up with a total score for each couple, which ultimately decides their rankings. Check out the infographic below for a more detailed explanation, and see our full feature here.

Wonder who Nick and Vanessa beat out on the list? Just behind the parents to be was Jennifer Hudson and David Otunga. They have hinted that they'll actually get married in 2012, after a three-year engagement. The singer says she's already personally designed her dress (it's a three-piece "show"). It seems like a great time to finally say "I do," since Hudson appears to be taking some time out from her hectic singing career and releasing her second album in 2011. She has a role in the new Three Stooges movie and she's still a hugely popular Weight Watchers spokesperson. Otunga got back into the ring in a big way with WrestleMania XXVIII this year. He's a man of brain and brawn, so if he ever decides he's done shaving his chest and suplexing bad guys, he can always put that Harvard Law degree to good use and go back to being a lawyer.

Last place on our top 100? The pair from the Jersey Shore. Snooki and Jionni's engagement/baby announcement set jaws to dropping and eyes to rolling, but the news gave them just the juice they needed to crack this year's list. Haters can hate, but the pint-sized Jersey Shore star claims she'll be a fantastic mother, and she's already threatened the life of anyone who tries to mess with her little meatball. The baby is definitely on the way, but will LaValle be around when the time comes? Their track record isn't perfect, but one thing is certain: These two are just hot and ridiculous enough to make our list.

100 Hottest Celebrity Couples of 2012
100 Hottest Celebrity Couples of 2012
Find out which of Hollywood's most famous pairs have it all: success, attractiveness, popularity and staying power.

I'm the former Interactives Editor at Zimbio. I'm in an emotionally abusive relationship with my cat. Follow me: Google