Holly Madison, a well-known TV personality, has shared a surprising reason why Hugh Hefner, the late Playboy founder, prohibited Playboy models from wearing red lipstick.
Madison, who was once Hefner's girlfriend for seven years before parting ways in 2008, has been sharing some of her experiences from her time at the famous Playboy mansion, where she moved in 2001.
During a recent episode of the Ahead of the Curve with Coco Mocoe podcast, Madison discussed Hefner's strict rules for the women living in the mansion, including his unusual aversion to red lipstick. She referred to it as Hefner's "control tactic."
"I think it was a control tactic, but also, when I was brand new, I wore red lipstick out a couple of times, and he didn't say anything about it, because when you were the new girl in the group, you were always treated well," she explained.
Madison continued by recounting a specific phrase she had once come across: "Somebody said, like, the higher up you are in a cult the worse you're treated because they want the new people to bond and feel into it."
However, after six months of Madison residing at the Playboy mansion, things started to take a different turn.
"It wasn't a big deal until, like, six months into it, when I was living in his bedroom and I was the main girlfriend," she shared. "That he felt like he had the leeway to yell at me over it."
Madison then shared her thoughts on why Hefner exercised such control over his girlfriends' makeup decisions.
"I think he didn't love it," she said. "Because when he invented the concept of a playmate in the '50s, he wanted the women to look very young and fresh-faced because he felt like the look in the '50s at the time was very - he described it as 'somebody's older sister'."
Providing further insight into Hef's rationale, Madison continued: "It was more sophisticated, fashion model, red lipstick."
"It was a lot of fabric and big skirts and everything, and he hated that."
Instead, Madison said: "He wanted skimpy and fresh-faced and very young looking."
And if you found that unsettling, brace yourself for this revelation. According to Madison, Hef reserved bold makeup for "older, mature women," which didn't align with his preference for the "barely legal" look anymore.