There is no denying that Hugh Hefner left a lasting impression on the world. Throughout this list, you’re going to come across 8 women whose lives were forever positively impacted by Hefner and the empire he created.
We include women like Pamela Anderson – who stripped it off over 10 times – and others like Sherlyn Chopra who Hefner named to be the first Indian to pose for the magazine. Other celebrities like Tara Reid and Lindsay Lohan utilized the magazine and their usage of tasteful nudity to gain a sense of empowerment. And others on our list, like Crystal Harris and Kendra Wilkinson, both got very in touch with the intimate side of Hefner.
Though we’d be lying if the influence that Hefner brought to this world was only positive. There are some celebrities, like Olivia Munn, who felt pressured to bare it all despite her contract stating otherwise. Or former girlfriends of Hefner like Holly Madison and Isabella St. James whose statements about Hefner and living in the mansion definitely don’t paint him in the best light. There’s even one entry whose decision to pose for Playboy three years prior cost her, her dream teaching job.
But just because some of our entries and the actions may shock you – such as the sexual assault that also occurred at the mansion – doesn’t make them any less intriguing or important to read.
These are 8 Women Whose Lives Were Positively Impacted By Hefner (And 7 Who Weren’t).
15. Positively – Carmen Electra Couldn’t Stop Crying
Carmen Electra to her credit has definitely done her best to try and make it in the entertainment field, including releasing some God awful movies that she has been the lead in. But when it comes to her biggest claim to fame, it may be that she elected to bare it all for Playboy on multiple occasions.
When talking about the impact the magazine had on her life, as well as her thoughts on Hefner’s passing, Electra stated
“Thank u for picking me and Bringing me into the magical world of Playboy ! I just can’t stop crying and I can’t imagine how many bunnies are crying for u too. U are a class act and I will always have gratitude for your kindness”
14. Negatively – Holly Madison Wanted To Give Up
Holly Madison spent a significant portion of her life in a relationship with Hugh Hefner. Along with Kendra Wilkinson and Bridget Marquardt, the three of them were his featured girlfriends on the series The Girls Next Door.
But in her biography titled Down the Rabbit Hole: Curious Adventures and Cautionary Tales of a Former Playboy Bunny, Madison revealed the height of her depression in the mansion
“Maybe it was the pot and the alcohol, but drowning myself seemed like the logical way to escape the ridiculous life I was leading.”
13. Positively – Katie Price Was Offered To Be His Girlfriend
When Katie Price was talking about her experience posing for Playboy, she admitted that Hefner actually propositioned her to be one of his girlfriends. Price ended up turning down the offer, however, due in part to the fact that she didn’t want to be intimate with Hefner (something that was required).
Despite that perhaps being an awkward exchange, Price still had nothing but praise for the former Playboy billionaire
“It was a big achievement for me to be on Playboy. I remember Hugh invited me and he wouldn’t let me bring anyone. I was so nervous,” as well as “What sad news this morning of this lovely man. Great times.”
12. Negatively – Izabella St. James Opens Up About The Allowance
Izabella St. James not only posed for Playboy, but she also spent time as one of Hefner’s girlfriends. Her insider knowledge helped make her book Bunny Tales: Behind Closed Doors at the Playboy Mansion an intriguing read. Unfortunately for Hefner though, the secrets revealed were not the best
“We had to go to Hef’s room, wait while he picked up all the dog poo off the carpet — and then ask for our allowance. We all hated this process. Hef would always use the occasion to bring up anything he wasn’t happy about in the relationship. Most of the complaints were about the lack of harmony among the girlfriends — or your lack of sexual participation in the ‘parties’ he held in his bedroom.”
St. James went on to say
11. Positively – Crystal Harris Called Him A Pioneer
While some women on our list dated Hefner, Crystal Harris has the distinction of being the only person on our list to have walked down the aisle with him.
The two were married in 2012, though not before a failed wedding in 2011 that involved Harris running out only 5 days before the date.
When talking about his passing, Harris stated
“He was an American hero. A pioneer. A kind and humble soul who opened up his life and home to the world. I felt how much he loved me. I loved him so much. I am so grateful,” she continued. “He gave me life. He gave me direction. He taught me kindness. I will feel eternally grateful to have been by his side, holding his hand, and telling him how much I love him. He changed my life, he saved my life. He made me feel loved every single day. He was a beacon to the world, a force unlike anything else.”
10. Negatively – Olivia Munn Felt Pressured Into It
Many women on our list felt in control of their photo shoots and respected on the set. That was not the case for Olivia Munn‘s journey with Playboy. Munn agreed to a non-nude photo shoot, something that the stylist for the photos had a major issue with.
Munn has written about her experiences in the past, saying
“He wants me to pose nude, while strategically placing my arms and legs; my publicist, of course, doesn’t. He wants to do a shower scene nude with strategically placed bubbles and steam on the glass; my publicist, of course, doesn’t. It’s exhausting. All the while I’m trying to pose flirty, fun, summery with about five dudes—strangers working the set—watching my every move.”
9. Positively – Tara Reid Thanked Him For Ending Controversy Over Her Body
Tara Reid may have made a name for herself for appearing in the raunchy American Pie franchise, but her character manages to stay fully clothed (at least on-screen) throughout her run in the series. That evidently was not the case for Reid when she was chosen to pose for Playboy in January/February 2010.
Reid had in the past earned some negative publicity over a botched breast enhancement, which was part of why she decided to put it all on display for Hefner
“A part of the reason I did Playboy was because there’s been so much controversy with my body. I wanted to show everyone, ‘Okay, look at it — this is what it looks like. Leave me alone now.’ And I’m really happy with it.”
8. Negatively – Chloe Goins Was Assaulted At The Mansion
We need to be completely upfront here, it’s not necessarily Hugh Hefner that negatively impacted the life of Chloe Goins. However, Goins did say that she was assaulted by Bill Cosby while attending a party at the mansion.
At the time of her assault – which she described as being drugged and waking up to Cosby licking her toes – Goins was 18 years old and Cosby would have been in his early 70s. Goins was not the only woman to accuse Cosby of these allegations, as over 60 have come out and said that Cosby did the same to them.
7. Positively – Pam Was Hef’s Favorite
When you think of Pamela Anderson, your mind might immediately go to her role on Baywatch. But as sexy as Anderson looked when running along the beach, you might be even more intrigued by the photos that she took for Playboy where her clothing was conveniently left to the side.
There is definitely no shortage of moments to pick from her relationship with the company, as she ended up posing for the cover an upwards of 14 times.
When discussing his passing, Anderson called Hefner the most important person in her entire life outside of her family as well as
“Now, I’m falling apart. This feeling is so crazy. People tell me all the time That I was your favorite…that I embody the spirit you fantasized about. I was the one. You said. I will miss your everything. Thank you for making the world a better place. A freeer [sic] and sexier place. You were a gentleman charming, elegant, chivalrous And so much fun. Goodbye Hef … Your Pamela.”
6. Negatively – Melissa Howe Talks About Strict Code Of Conduct
While this list is full of beautiful women, for our next entry you get to stare at both Melissa and her twin sister Carla. Both of whom Hefner was able to track down and convince them to strip it all off for the company. But when talking about living in the mansion – something both of them did – Melissa admitted how strict it was
“If you do something wrong, you’ll get an email. There’s a strict code of conduct. There are even rules about Instagram and Twitter. You’ve got to show everything in a good light and if you’re drunk in a picture you’ll be in trouble.”
Melissa also stated that if you acted out of line that Hefner may punish you by making you sit at a different (and smaller) dining table.
5. Positively – Lindsay Lohan Was Better Than Hef Could Have Imagined
Lindsay Lohan has had plenty of moments in her life where she definitely loved engaging in some partying. Which means that along with posing in her birthday suit for Playboy, she may have also enjoyed some of the night-life activities that went on at the mansion.
When talking about the photo shoot that she did for February 2012, Lohan stated
“‘[It’s] a part of nature, and I go along with nature’. I think Marilyn Monroe once said that. I certainly agree with her … Knowing yourself and your body is so important because it gives you confidence, and in life, women need confidence.”
With how stunning she looks in the photos there are definitely plenty of reasons to be confident. Hefner also offered Lohan praise, saying
4. Negatively – Nicole Deweese Was Fired From Job Over The Photos
You always need to be careful about what you do in your past, as it may always come back to bite you. When Nicole Deweese was chosen to strip it all off for Playboy, she was perhaps understandably excited at the opportunity. She was even named their “Coed of the month”. But 3 years later, Deweese found herself unemployed after her school – where she taught Spanish – fired her after finding out about the photos.
The school made the argument that because these racy photos are available, that it compromises how her students may have viewed her as an educator.
3. Positively – Sherlyn Chopra Was First Indian
There are plenty of women who managed to make a name for themselves as a model because of their time in Playboy. But for Indian women, it took decades before the magazine finally had their first Indian grace their pages.
The model was Sherlyn Chopra, who thankfully had nothing but positive things to say about her experience stripping it off for Hefner
“A true visionary who chose to not conform to the dogma set by the self-proclaimed guardians of the society but instead followed his bliss by acting on his excitement consistently. The experience of having shot for Playboy has been one of the most liberating ones that I’ve had so far.”
2. Negatively – Daisy Lowe Would Delete A Photo If She Could
As a British Model, Daisy Lowe is definitely familiar with putting her body on prominent display for her fans. But while Lowe may feel perfectly comfortable with her body, her experience with Playboy was still one that she wishes she could have taken back.
When talking about her biggest regrets in her modelling career, Lowe responded
“Probably my completely nude Playboy picture. I love so many of the images, but not the one of me underwater. My lady parts got an entire page to themselves, which I would love to be deleted!”
1. Positively – Kendra Wilkinson Will Have Hef In Her Heart Forever
While some of the women on our list had only a brief relationship with Hefner, that isn’t the case for Kendra Wilkinson who was one of Hefner’s girlfriends. Her publicity was helped by the fact that she appeared on the reality show The Girls Next Door which was centered around Hefner’s love life.
When talking about his passing to People, Wilkinson stated
“Hef changed my life. He made me the person I am today. I couldn’t be more thankful for our friendship and our time together. I will miss him so much but he will be in my heart forever.”
Jendra is currently filming another reality show Kendra On Top which was renewed for a 6th season earlier this year.
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