Bettie Page: What a Dame!
"God approves of nudity. Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, they were naked as jaybirds." -Bettie Page
She was a classic pinup girl, but also embraced the kink lifestyle when she posed in spike-heeled shoes with a whip in her hand. She was a woman whose sensuality sold millions-- of photographs, posters, and even movies.
Bettie Page embraced that sensuality with both hands during her modeling and acting career, which lasted 7 years, longer than most pin-up models at the time. She was one of the most celebrated Playmates of the Month, in a Santa hat and not much else.
She wore her skin like other people wear clothes-- without shame and with great confidence, but she also wore sexy lingerie, most of which she made herself. Whether that's because there simply wasn't much titillating lingerie available to the 1950's woman, or because she needed a fit and cut that would perfectly flatter her curves, she certainly invented some very creative and sexy clothes.
She was married 3 times and suffered from schizophrenia. In the late 50's, she became a born-again Christian, perhaps finding some solace from her illness in the church.
Well-liked by many famous men throughout her life, she was not beloved by women in traditional roles, nor by later feminists. Yet she embodied feminists ideals-- she was unashamed of herself or her body, she worked hard, and supported herself throughout her life.
Despite how comfortable she was with her youthful body, as she aged and grew heavier, she requested not to be photographed. In this way, she secured the famous, vivacious images of her youth forever.
Page died on December 11th, but her legacy of sensuality and visual erotica lives on.
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