A wet T-shirt contest is a competition involving exhibitionism, typically featuring young women contestants at a nightclub, bar, or resort. Wet T-shirt contestants generally wear white or light-colored T-shirts without bras, bikini tops, or other garments beneath. Water (often ice water) is then sprayed or poured onto the participants' chests, causing their T-shirts to turn translucent and cling to their breasts.The comparatively rarer male equivalent is the wet boxer contest, sometimes held at gay bars.
Contestants may take turns dancing or posing before the audience, with the outcome decided either by crowd reaction or by judges' vote. In racier contests, participants may tear or crop their T-shirts to expose midriffs, cleavage, or the undersides of their breasts. Depending on local laws, participants may be allowed to remove their T-shirts or strip completely naked during their performance.
The first known mention of the term Wet T-shirt contest in the press occurred in 1975 in The Palm Beach Post , describing the contest's appearance at New Orleans discotheques. The contest subsequently became established at spring break events in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with some bar owners being fined under public indecency laws for holding one.
In the United States, skiing filmmaker Dick Barrymore claims in his memoir Breaking Even to have held the first wet T-shirt contest at Sun Valley, Idaho's Boiler Room Bar in January 1971, as part of a promotion for K2 skis.The contest was promoted as a simple "T-shirt contest" in which airline stewardesses would dance to music wearing K2 promotional T-shirts. However, the first contestant to appear was a professional stripper who danced topless and the amateur contestants responded by drenching their T-shirts before competing. Barrymore held a second "K2 Wet T-Shirt Contest" in the Rusty Nail at Stowe Mountain Resort, Vermont in order to film it, despite the fact that Stowe City Council had passed a resolution banning nudity at the event. He held another promotional contest for K2 on 10 March 1971 at Aspen, Colorado's The Red Onion restaurant and bar, and the contests were featured in a pictorial in the March 1972 issue of Playboy .
The first known mention of the term Wet T-shirt contest in the press occurred in 1975 in The Palm Beach Post , describing the contest's appearance at New Orleans discotheques. The contest subsequently became established at spring break events in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with some bar owners being fined under public indecency laws for holding one.Despite a lack of clarity as to their legal status, contests began to take place elsewhere in the United States. A contest in a Milwaukee tavern in 1976 was subject to a police raid, despite contestants wearing Scotch Tape under their T-shirts as required by the police.
Jacqueline Bisset's appearance in the 1977 film The Deep, where she swam underwater wearing only a T-shirt for a top, helped to bring the wet T-shirt contest to broader public awareness.On Frank Zappa's 1979 album Joe's Garage the track "Fembot in a Wet T-Shirt" tells of Mary from Canoga Park who takes part in a wet T-shirt contest in order to raise money to return home after being abandoned by a rock group in Miami.
The 2003 American reality film The Real Cancun included a wet T-shirt contest.
The Spanish festival of La Tomatina, a large public tomato fight where participants become soaked with juice from tomatoes, has been suggested as another possible origin of the wet T-shirt contest, although La Tomatina began in 1945.
In 1983 the King & Spalding law firm in Atlanta asked women summer interns attending that firm's annual picnic to participate in a wet T-shirt contest. The proposed contest was replaced with a swimsuit competition and the winner was promised a permanent job on graduation.Some participants said they felt humiliated but did not protest because they were candidates for jobs with the firm. The Wall Street Journal included details of the event in a front page article on sex discrimination in large law firms. The fact that a wet T-shirt contest was proposed led to the case being used to demonstrate institutional sexism in law firms.
In 1997, teenagers from Portland, Oregon, celebrating the completion of high school held a wet T-shirt contest on a Boeing 727 en route to a Mexican resort, with a flight attendant encouraging the activity. An FAA investigation followed, as pilots supposedly judged the contest on the flight deck, disregarding rules that passengers are not allowed in the cockpit. A video showed contestants emerging from the cockpit wearing wet T-shirts. The FAA disciplined the pilots for sexual misconduct.
Lawsuits have been filed on behalf of underaged contestants who lied about their age to participate in wet T-shirt contests.
In 2002, the parents of teenager Monica Pippin brought a federal lawsuit against Playboy Entertainment, Anheuser-Busch, Deslin Hotels, Best Buy, and other companies relating to her appearance the previous year in a Daytona Beach wet T-shirt contest, at which time she had been a 16-year-old high school student. Pippin had danced topless during the contest and had allowed men to pour jugs of water over her bare breasts. After footage of her performance began to appear in videos and on cable television, a neighbor alerted Pippin's parents, who retained a lawyer. Although Pippin admitted in court that she had lied to contest organizers about her age, her attorney claimed that, as a minor, she was unable to give informed consent to perform or be filmed topless. Pippin settled with Anheuser-Busch and Playboy in April 2006.
In a similar suit in 2007, two women sued Deslin Hotels, Girls Gone Wild, and various websites that published footage of their appearance in another 2001 Daytona Beach contest. The two girls, who were both sixteen at the time, had been filmed exposing their breasts, buttocks, and pubic areas. Like Pippin, they had lied about their age to gain admission to the contest.
Indecent exposure is the deliberate exposure in public or in view of the general public by a person of a portion or portions of their body in circumstances where the exposure is contrary to local moral or other standards of appropriate behavior. The term indecent exposure is a legal expression. Social and community attitudes to the exposing of various body parts and laws covering what is referred to as indecent exposure vary significantly in different countries. It ranges from outright prohibition to prohibition of exposure of certain body parts, such as the genital area, buttocks or breasts.
A swimsuit is an item of clothing designed to be worn by people engaging in a water-based activity or water sports, such as swimming, diving and surfing, or sun-orientated activities, such as sun bathing. Different types may be worn by men, women, and children. A swimsuit can be described by various names, some of which are used only in particular locations, including swimwear, bathing suit, swimming costume, bathing costume, swimming suit, swimmers, swimming togs, bathers, cossie, or swimming trunks for men, besides others.
Topfreedom is a cultural and political movement seeking changes in laws to allow women to be topless in public places where men are permitted to be barechested, as a form of gender equality. Specifically, the movement seeks the repeal or overturning of laws which restrict a woman's right not to have her chest covered at all times in public.
The monokini, designed by Rudi Gernreich in 1964, consisting of only a brief, close-fitting bottom and two thin straps, was the first women's topless swimsuit. His revolutionary and controversial design included a bottom that "extended from the midriff to the upper thigh" and was "held up by shoestring laces that make a halter around the neck." Some credit Gernreich's design with initiating, or describe it as a symbol of, the sexual revolution.
Toplessness refers to the state in which a woman's breasts, including her areola and nipples, are exposed, especially in a public place or in a visual medium. The male equivalent is barechestedness, also commonly called shirtlessness.
A swimsuit competition, more commonly now called a bikini contest, is a beauty contest which is judged and ranked while contestants wear a swimsuit, typically a bikini. One of the judging criteria is the physical attractiveness of the contestants. The Big Four international beauty pageants have included examples of such a competition.
Pasties are patches that cover a person's nipples and areolae, typically affixed with adhesive. Though pasties are commonly associated with strippers, burlesque shows and erotic entertainment, they are also, at times, worn as an undergarment, beachwear, or as a form of protest during women's rights events such as Go Topless Day that may avoid potential prosecution under indecency laws.
Sara Jean Underwood is an American model, television host, and actress who was chosen as the Playmate of the Month for the July 2006 issue of Playboy magazine and later became Playmate of the Year in 2007. She is a former host of Attack of the Show! on G4.
A handbra is a technique used by actresses, models and other entertainers to cover their nipples and areolae with their own hands to comply with censors' guidelines, public authorities and community standards when female breasts are required to be covered in film or other media. If the arms are used instead of the hands the expression is arm bra. The use of long hair for this purpose is called a hair bra.
Clothing fetishism or garment fetishism is a sexual fetish that revolves around a fixation upon a particular article or type of clothing, a particular fashion or uniform, or a person dressed in such a style.
Kristine Leigh Lefebvre is a lawyer, and was a contestant on NBC's reality show The Apprentice who made it into the final group of six contestants before being fired. The credentials which garnered Lefebvre a spot on the show include her education and career as an attorney. Her undergraduate degree is from the Metropolitan State College in Denver, and her law degree is from Nova Southeastern University in Florida. As a professional, she has represented celebrities Shaquille O'Neal and Dan Marino as well as the Staples Center sports complex and the Los Angeles Kings hockey team.
Meghan Allen is an American softcore model and reality show contestant. She was Playboy Cyber Girl of the Month for January 2008. Meghan first appeared on the NBC reality show Fear Factor in 2004. Together with James Wise, her boyfriend at the time, she competed in the Couples edition, doing 8 episodes of the show altogether. In 2008 Allen was a participant in the reality show Momma's Boys on NBC.
The modern bikini made its debut in 1946, and since then it has caught the popular imagination becoming probably the most popular women's swimsuit, and not necessarily for swimming. Today, bikinis appear in competitions, films, magazines, music, literature, and even video games. Despite the easy availability of more revealing glamour imagery, 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 Polka Dot Bikini" inspired a bikini-buying spree. 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. 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 helped the growing popularity of bikinis further. 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.
Go Topless Day is an annual event held in the United States to support the right of women to go topless in public on gender-equality grounds. Topless freedom laws are celebrated and protests are held in states where topless women are prohibited.
The Outdoor Co-ed Topless Pulp Fiction Appreciation Society is a group of several dozen women and a few men that has, since August 17, 2011, organized regular gatherings around New York City, meeting to read and discuss books in public while topless. The primary objective of the group, besides enjoying the sun and book reading, is to create awareness that New York law allows toplessness in public, and to change social attitudes to the exposure of women's breasts.
Dick Barrymore was an American ski film maker of the 1960s and 1970s and an advocate of "hot dogging".
Free the Nipple is a topfreedom campaign created in 2012 during pre-production of a 2014 film of the same name. The campaign highlights the general convention of allowing men to appear topless in public while considering it sexual or indecent for women to do the same, and asserts that this difference is an unjust treatment of women. The campaign argues that it should be legally and culturally acceptable for women to bare their nipples in public.
In Western society, there is an increasing trend towards bralessness among a number of women, especially millennials, who have expressed opposition to and are giving up wearing bras. New York City career coach Judith Gerberg says going braless in the workplace is increasingly common among younger women. "Millennial women are much more self-confident than women used to be." Being seen in public while not wearing a bra is becoming more acceptable, encouraging more women to go without. In 2016, Allure magazine fashion director Rachael Wang wrote, "Going braless is as old as feminism but it seems to be bubbling to the surface more recently as a direct response to Third Wave moments like #freethenipple hashtag campaign, increased trans-visibility like Caitlyn Jenner's Vanity Fair cover ... and Lena Dunham’s show Girls ." Going braless, which for many years was considered a political statement, has in recent years become fashionable.
No Bra Day is an annual observance on October 13 on which women are encouraged to forgo wearing a bra as a means to encourage breast cancer awareness. No Bra Day was initially observed on July 9, 2011, but within three years it had moved to the 13th day of the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, October. Users on social media are encouraged to post using the hashtag #nobraday to promote awareness of breast cancer symptoms and to encourage gender equality. Some users on social media sites also encourage women to post pictures of themselves not wearing a bra. Some women embrace No Bra Day as a political statement while others prefer the comfort of discarding what they view as a restrictive, uncomfortable garment.
In the United States, states have primary jurisdiction in matters of public morality. The topfreedom movement has claimed success in a few instances in persuading some state and federal courts to overturn some state laws on the basis of sex discrimination or equal protection, arguing that a woman should be free to expose her chest in any context in which a man can expose his. Other successful cases have been on the basis of freedom of expression in protest, or simply that exposure of breasts is not indecent.