Intimate Intelligence

How to protect yourself from hackers and cyber-thieves.
by Richard Vincente

Elizabeth Taylor in 1956 - only known nude photo of her (as seen at Lingerie Briefs)
The picture above is believed to be the only nude photo of the late screen star Elizabeth Taylor, and you were never meant to see it.

Shot by a friend in 1956 when she was 24, the picture was an intimate engagement gift from Liz to her third husband, Mike Todd. When Todd died in a plane crash a year after their wedding, a devastated Liz is believed to have given the photo to her assistant for safekeeping.

A collector somehow acquired the picture in 1980 and kept it private for more than 30 years. Then, last year when Liz Taylor died at age 79, the collector inexplicably released the image as a kind of tribute to the star and a gift to her grieving fans.

We can only guess what Liz … Read more

by Richard Vincente

Censorship is a weapon that works best when it’s used sparingly, if at all. It’s the cultural equivalent of a nuclear deterrent.

Most people in marketing, advertising and programming understand this and play by the rules. But the shadowy group of individuals and quasi-legitimate authorities who monitor and enforce community standards have itchy trigger fingers. For them, censorship isn’t just a deterrent, it’s a way of defining what’s acceptable by shooting down anyone who strays outside the fuzzy, fluid lines of public morality.

Today, censorship battles seem like a thing of the past — a relic of the 1970s or 1930s or maybe Victorian England. But they’re not. Skirmishes are still common and, with the emergence of the Internet, the battlefield has changed dramatically.So too have the censors, who keep finding new offenses to shield us from (and, in turn, justify their … Read more

Undressing For Success

by Richard Vincente


 Lana Del Rey had barely started her new life as the pop music world’s new ‘It Girl’ when she made a curious career move: posing in a What Katie Did bullet bra for I-D magazine and, soon afterwards, a Prada bodysuit for V magazine.

Both photos were published a month before the release of Lana’s first album and her sleepy, much-discussed performance on Saturday Night Live. Even though many people still didn’t know who she was (or whether she could sing), we had already seen her half-undressed.

Sounds a bit calculating, doesn’t it? But it shouldn’t come as a surprise. The lingerie photo shoot has become an essential stepping stone on the path to success for young starlets, especially pop singers, whether they like it or not.

A year before Lana started undressing in public, Nicki Minaj (top) was doing … Read more

The Retro-Porn Provocateurs

by Richard Vincente

Lingerie and pornography make strangely uncomfortable bedfellows.

You might expect the two industries would be as close as kissing cousins, since they’re often selling the same thing — human arousal — to the same people. The opportunities for cross-promotion should be endless.

But you won’t find La Senza product placements in your favorite Ron Jeremy flick or Hanky Panky ads on the hotel room adult channel. Most reputable fashion lingerie brands don’t want to be associated with porn culture, its explicit and often demeaning products or its grubby commercial values.

Of course, some people still think all lingerie advertising is by definition pornographic (remember the fuss that greeted the first Victoria’s Secret catalogue?), but that’s an outdated misconception. With some notable exceptions, most lingerie brands rely on predictably genteel, PG-rated marketing — even if the goods they’re selling are downright triple-X.

Censorship … Read more

What’s In A Name?

For Lingerie Brands, It Might Be Confusion

by Richard Vincente ~
A not-so-funny thing happened last year when HOTmilk, the trendy New Zealand maternity label, was getting ready to launch its new men’s underwear brand, Milkman: someone beat them to market with a similar product, brand name and edgy sales pitch.


To make matters worse, the interloper was another Kiwi label, an upstart indie called Milk Underwear. Their debut just a few months ahead of Milkman‘s long-planned launch was possibly just coincidence and bad timing, but HOTmilk still claimed trademark infringement. Milk at first backed down and announced on its website (without mentioning the dispute with HOTmilk) that it would be starting over and re-branding under a new name.

But the truce was short-lived. Instead of dropping its name, Milk Underwear simply packed up and moved its operations to the … Read more

  by Richard Vincente

There’s been a lot of news coverage in the past few days about the latest victory for women in Saudi Arabia: the right to shop for lingerie and cosmetics in a harassment-free environment.

Yesterday was the first day that lingerie boutiques in KSA were required to have female-only sales staff, a move that will improve employment opportunities for Arab women and give them a tiny bit more freedom (and privacy).

Some people are calling it the “lingerie revolution”, even though it’s a small and somewhat patronizing step: it took a royal decree from King Abdullah to force retailers to heed a 6-year-old labor law that permitted women to work in underwear stores and, even then, an estimated 20% of shops are refusing to comply for fear of violating the stricter edicts of Qur’anic law.

It’s hard for western women to grasp the … Read more

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