Bikini in popular culture

The modern bikini first appeared in 1946, and since then it has become a part of popular culture. It is one of the most widely worn women's swimsuits, used for swimming and in a variety of other contexts. Today, bikinis appear in competitions, films, magazines, music, literature, and video games. Despite the availability of more revealing glamour wear, bikini modeling remains popular and can still create controversy. Portrayals of the bikini in popular culture led, to a large extent, to its acceptance by Western society at large. In 1960, Brian Hyland's pop song "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini" inspired a bikini-buying spree.[1] The white bikini worn by Ursula Andress as Honey Ryder in the 1962 James Bond film Dr. No has been cited as one of the most famous bikinis of all time. By 1963, the movie Beach Party, starring Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon, led a wave of films that made the bikini a pop-culture symbol. Playboy first featured a bikini on its cover in 1962. The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue debuted two years later. This increasing popularity was reinforced by its appearance in such contemporary films as How to Stuff a Wild Bikini featuring Annette Funicello and One Million Years B.C. (1966) featuring Raquel Welch.[6] Raquel Welch's fur bikini in One Million Years B.C. became a famous moment in cinema history. Hollywood stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield, Gina Lollobrigida and Jane Russell further helped the growing popularity of bikinis. Pin up posters of Monroe and Mansfield, as well as Hayworth, Bardot and Raquel Welch distributed around the world contributed significantly to the popularity of the bikini.