Today we raise a glass to the face that launched a thousand sets of regretted bangs: the Queen of Pinups, Bettie Page.
Born in Nashville in 1923, Bettie got her start modeling for New York City “camera clubs,” but it wasn’t long before her all-American smile and enviable curves graced the pages of prominent ‘gentlemen’s magazines’, like Eyefull and—ahem—Titter.
By 1952, her modeling career had taken a turn for the slightly less wholesome, and Bettie was becoming known for her S&M and bondage-themed photos and short films, then a niche market catered to by magazines like Bizarre. In 1955, Hugh Hefner selected Bettie as the January 1955 Playboy Playmate in his then-fledgling magazine, where she sported only a Santa hat and a mile-wide grin. Despite a successful career, in 1959 Bettie became a born-again Christian, denouncing the career that had made her an icon, and even working for the Reverend Billy Graham. She passed away in 2008, but today we pay tribute to her with these modern-day pinup picks—clip-on bangs optional.