What Happened To These '90s Playboy Playmates?

Since its first issue hit store shelves in December 1953, Playboy magazine has been a significant player in popular culture. The magazine has long been both renowned and reviled across the world for its depiction of nude women in glamour photoshoots, as well as its overall philosophy. A major influencer throughout the latter half of the 20th century, Playboy brought a number of young women to international attention. 

In each issue, the magazine spotlights a Playmate of the Month — a featured model taking up the famous centerfold alongside a Playmate Data Sheet and several photographs. At the end of the year, a PMOTM is chosen as the Playmate of the Year, an honor that comes with a hefty cash prize and a car. Whether a model is chosen as the PMOTM or PMOTY, many have gone on to enjoy impressive careers in the entertainment industry and elsewhere. 

Throughout the 1990s, several notable women rose from relative obscurity to the international spotlight. Some became fashion designers, others launched acting careers, and many were celebrated for being recognized as sex symbols. Women like Pamela Anderson, Anna Nicole Smith, and Jenny McCarthy all got their start as Playmates, so it's fair to say the magazine has been a launching pad for a handful of women. It's been more than 20 years since the '90s drew to a close, and this is what some of the most notable Playmates of the decade have been doing since posing for Playboy. 

Anna Nicole Smith's tragic rise and fall

Anna Nicole Smith was on the cover of Playboy five times, her first being the March 1992 issue. In May of that year, she won Playmate of the Month, and the following year, she was Playmate of the Year. She went on to be the face of Guess jeans, appeared on the covers of a number of other magazines, and show up in movies like "The Hudsucker Proxy."  She also gave reality TV a shot with the E! series "The Anna Nicole Show." 

As her star continued to rise, Anna Nicole's personal life became tabloid fodder. Unsurprisingly, the press had a field day when she wed J. Howard Marshall, an 89-year-old oil tycoon, in 1994. The following year, he died, and the subsequent fight for his riches made headline after headline —and Anna Nicole wasn't always depicted favorably. On a 2002 episode of "Larry King Live," she acknowledged that while she wasn't physically attracted to her late husband, she cared for him deeply. "I've never had love like that before," she said. "He truly loved me, and I loved him for it."

In September 2006, Anna Nicole's son, Daniel Wayne Smith, died of an accidental drug overdose. The following February, Anna Nicole died after taking a lethal combination of drugs. Her death was ruled an accident. Per ABC News, following her passing, her partner, Howard K. Stern, said, "I would say that physically, she died last week, but in a lot of ways, emotionally she died when Daniel died."

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Pamela Anderson became a superstar sex symbol

Of the many women who have posed for Playboy over the years, Pamela Anderson is likely the most well-known. Between 1989 and 2016, she appeared on 14 different covers — a record for the magazine company. While her first cover didn't make her a Playmate of the Month, she earned that distinction in the magazine's February 1990 issue. 

After that, Anderson booked several high-profile acting jobs, including a recurring role on "Home Improvement" as the original Tool Time Girl and an episode of "Married... with Children." Of course, the acting gig that catapulted her into the stratosphere came in 1992 when she was cast as C.J. Parker on "Baywatch." Her lengthy filmography also includes "Barb Wire," "Borat," "Scooby-Doo," and "Scary Movie 3." Anderson's also competed on several dance competition reality shows, including "Dancing with the Stars." In 2022, she hit the Great White Way for an eight-week run as Roxie Hart in Chicago.

What's more, Anderson is an activist for a number of causes, including animal rights and AIDS/HIV awareness, and a published writer. Her latest book, "Love, Pamela," hitting shelves in January 2023. And in March 2022, she announced on Instagram that she and Netflix had a documentary in the works, alluding to the Hulu scripted series based on her relationship with Tommy Lee that didn't earn her stamp of approval. "I can only surprise you — not a victim, but a survivor and alive to tell the real story," she wrote.

Corinna Harney stays busy with acting

Long before she was a Playboy Playmate, Corinna Harney had stars in her eyes. She nabbed her first TV ad when she was in elementary school and got into theater. "Acting has been a love of mine since I was in Ms. Lomen's Theater Class at Bonanza High School," she said in a chat with WomanToWoman. "I didn't take it too seriously though until a friend of mine went to film school and put me in a few of his short films that went to the Director's Guild and won some awards. It was then that I got bit by that acting bug." 

Harney was also bitten by the modeling bug, which eventually led her to becoming Playmate of the Month in August 1991. The following year, she was chosen as the magazine's Playmate of the Year. Harney went on to appear in an episode of "High Tide" in 1995, and then showed up in "Vampirella," "Vegas Vacation," and "Pitcher and the Pin-Up." Harney never stopped acting and often shows up in minor parts on television and films, including 2022's "Bleach." 

Her love of performing also inspired her to co-create a scavenger hunt show called Alibi Las Vegas. "It's laughter therapy for me every Saturday," she told the Las Vegas Review-Journal in 2018. "One girl who came through said it was like walking into 'The Twilight Zone.' It's an immersive experience on steroids."

Shae Marks got into TV and movies

After getting plucked out of obscurity, Shae Marks' career wasted no time taking off.  "I was 20 years old when a Playboy Scout discovered me," she recalled in Rock Confidential. "Within one month I had flown to Los Angeles, stayed at the Playboy Mansion, done a test shoot for Centerfold, and been accepted as a Playmate...it all happened so fast." In May 1994, Marks was named the Playmate of the Month, but her work with the company wasn't finished. 

While working for Playboy, she posed for various shoots, including Playboy's "Book of Lingerie." She also branched out to other magazines and brands, including Fredericks of Hollywood and Venus Swimwear. Like many featured Playmates, Marks transitioned to acting after finding fame in the magazine. She appeared in two episodes of "Married... with Children," an episode of "Baywatch," and various direct-to-video movies for Malibu Bay Films. As of this writing, her latest film credit is 2002's "Sting of the Black Scorpion." In addition to her acting work, she found time to launch her own modeling website called Shae's Playpen. "What sets us apart is that I work full time on the site, producing shoots, shooting content, and making other special updates," she said in Rock Confidential." While there isn't a ton of available information about the personal side of her life, Marks has shared that she got married in 1998

Jenny McCarthy has dominated the small screen

Jenny McCarthy was made famous when she was selected as the Playmate of the Month for the October 1993 issue of Playboy. That same year, she was named Playmate of the Year, which elevated her celebrity. She moved to Los Angeles and began hosting "Hot Rocks" on Playboy TV. That experience helped her transition away from Playboy (for a short time), and she became the co-host of MTV's "Singled Out," which earned her even more attention. From there, she was all over the place, appearing at "WrestleMania XI" and "Stupids." 

Her appearance on "Stupids" paved the way for her short-lived sitcom, "Jenny." Over the years, McCarthy has appeared in dozens of films, and she eventually landed a spot at "The View" table. Her time on the series only went from 2013 to 2014, but she was more than ready to leave. As she said on "Watch What Happens Live," "Let's just face it, ['The View'] was hell." McCarthy became a judge on "The Masked Singer" in 2019, which has kept her busy ever since. In 2020, she parted ways with her hit SiriusXM radio show after six years. 

McCarthy not only became an outspoken advocate for autism research following her son's diagnosis. Some of her views — specifically involving vaccines and autism — have landed her in a lot of hot water, though she maintains she is not an anti-vaxxer. As she said on Frontline, "We're not an anti-vaccine movement. We're pro-safe-vaccine schedule."

Kelly Wearstler became a successful interior designer

Kelly Wearstler's career began in Hollywood when she moved there in the early 1990s to try to make it as a set decorator. Per The New Yorker, Wearstler's day job was working at a restaurant, and she happened to be spotted by a Playboy scout while on the clock. She was Playmate of the Month in September 1994.

Instead of continuing as a model, she used the money she earned to not only start a new career, but launch an interior design business. Kelly Wearstler Interior Design has conquered the residential and hotel game, designing spots like the Viceroy in Palm Springs. Wearstler has also designed restaurants and lounges around the country and appeared as a judge on "Top Design."  

In addition to being one of the most in-demand interior designers in the country, Wearstler began designing clothes, rugs, accessories, and more. Of her approach to design, she told Forbes, "I start by asking them what story they want to tell, how they want to feel. It's about evoking a mood, telling a story." And as for the key to her success? "Being a good listener is the most important aspect of my work." Wearstler offers a MasterClass where she breaks down how to design a space that feels right for you. Unsurprisingly, Wearstler's work is highly sought after, and her list of clients includes Cameron Diaz, Gwen Stefani, and Ben Stiller. 

Julie Lynn Cialini was on a version of The Price is Right

Julie Lynn Cialini was selected as Miss February in 1995, which was one of her earliest modeling jobs. The following year, she was chosen as Playmate of the Year. She began working with the company and appeared in numerous videos, including "Wet and Wild and Sexy Lingerie," "Playboy: Cheerleaders," among others. Her pictorial in the February issue helped her begin an acting career, which kicked off in 1994 when she was selected as one of the models on a late-night version of "The Price is Right" called "The Price is Right at Night."

The series was meant to reach a younger audience, but it never found a footing and was canceled by the end of the year. The show's cancellation didn't kill Cialini's career, and she continued to work for several years as an actor. In 1995, she appeared in an episode of "Baywatch Nights" and landed a recurring role in "High Tide," which kept her busy until 1996. After that, she had minor roles in several straight-to-video films, none of which gained much attention. 

Cialini did some work as a spokesmodel for the IMIS Youth Safety Conference in 2010 and 2011, but that's about all she's done publicly since the early 2000s. While it seemed as if she retired from acting in 2004, she was cast as Julie in "Wounded But Not Broken" in 2023, so she may be working on a comeback.

Victoria Zdrok became an adult film star and author

Victoria Zdrok's modeling career kicked off in 1994 when she became the Playmate of the Month in the October issue. From there, Zdrok continued to model in adult magazines, and in 2002, she was named Penthouse's Pet of the Month, becoming one of a handful of women to receive the honor from both magazines. Two years later, she became Penthouse's Pet of the Year. Zdrok never shied away from adult-oriented industries, and in 1998, she began performing in adult films. 

Much of her career in entertainment since becoming a Playmate has been spent in the adult film industry. According to the Internet Adult Film Database, Zdrok appeared in 41 films between 1998 and 2021. While Zdrok is an accomplished model and adult film star, she's also well-educated and holds several degrees. Zdrok obtained a Doctor of Jurisprudence and a Ph.D. in psychology, making her both a lawyer and a doctor, though she isn't a practicing attorney. 

Instead, Dr. Zdrok spends most of her time as a clinical psychologist and sex therapist. In this capacity, she wrote "The Anatomy of Pleasure" and "Dr. Z on Scoring: How to Pick Up, Seduce, and Hook Up with Hot Women." Dr. Zdrok found her name in the news, thanks to former President Donald Trump. Though it's boiled down to a he said, she said, it has been alleged that Zdrok went on several dates with Trump around 2012, which he denies, per The Daily Beast

Donna D'Errico also headed to Baywatch

Donna D'Errico owned a Las Vegas-based limousine company before she was named Playmate of the Month in September 1995. As her Playboy profile noted (via Vintage Playboy Mags), she even worked as a driver. But once Playboy happened, D'Errico hung up her driving gloves and started showing up on television series, including "Married... with Children," "Baywatch Nights," and "Baywatch," which kept her busy for most of the 1990s. She continued to act throughout the 2000s and 2010s, but she is best known for her "Baywatch" work.  

In 2012, D'Errico climbed Mount Ararat in Turkey, determined to find proof of the remains of Noah's Ark. D'Errico told AOL News in 2011, "This has been a dream of mine since I was nine or ten. I went to Catholic school and was fascinated by Noah's ark. I would do class projects based on the ark." Unfortunately, ultimately decided to cut the climb short after she sustained multiple injuries.

D'Errico continues to act, having played Mabel in "Frank and Penelope" in 2022. She also took on directing duties in "The Secret of Agri Dagi" and has a few producer credits to her name. D'Errico is active on social media, and according to Variety, she joined OnlyFans in 2022. D'Errico has received praise and criticism for her various posts, often featuring her in bikinis or lingerie.

Shauna Sand's sex tape drama

After Shauna Sand was Playboy's Playmate of the Month for the May 1996 issue, she continued with her acting career. In 1995, she landed a recurring role on "Renegade," and then was in 14 episodes of "Air America." Sand worked on various television series and direct-to-video films throughout the early 2000s.  

In 2009, Sand made headlines when one of her sex tapes was taken and a third party gave the video to Vivid Entertainment without her permission. While she was initially opposed to the release of the video, she eventually dropped the lawsuit she filed against Vivid, per TMZ. "I was in shock and really depressed for about a week when I realized it had been stolen, and it was all over the place," she told AVN in 2010. "But then I realized, 'You know what? I had so much fun making it, I had probably one of the best times of my life, and I'm just going to accept it and see it more in a positive manner.'" And so, Vivid released "Shauna Sand Exposed."

Throughout the 2010s, Sand appeared in reality TV shows in France and the soap opera "Hollywood Girls." In a 2020 chat with Celeb magazine, she shared that she'd recently earned her real estate license. The mother of three told the outlet that she'd love to be on the hit Netflix series "Selling Sunset."

Victoria Silvstedt found success in show business

Long before she broke into the modeling world, 1997's Playboy Playmate of the Year Victoria Silvstedt was a competitive alpine skier. However, her skiing career came to an abrupt end. "When I was 16, I suffered a serious accident during a downhill race and my mum said I was never racing again," she told Monaco Life in 2019. So, she pivoted to the world of pageants and modeling — a move that proved to be a good one. After modeling for a number of high-end designers, she was picked to be Playboy's December 1996 Playmate of the Month. Her career only continued to flourish.

The former face of Guess jeans wears a lot of hats. Silvstedt started working as an actor, popping up in movies like "BASEketball" and TV shows like "Melrose Place." She released her first and only album in 1999. She had an E! reality show, "Victoria Silvstedt: My Perfect Life." And she also got into the hosting game. She told Arabian MODA in 2017, "For me, the action is all in television, and I live for action. Hosting shows on Swedish, French, and Italian TV is something I enjoy and is very fulfilling."

But wait, there's more. As Silvstedt shared with Monaco Life, she's gotten into day trading and investing. "I also go to a lot of hedge fund meetings and do financial trade talk shows in Sweden," she said. Talk about a bunny of all trades.

Kelly Monaco scrubbed in at General Hospital

Per her Playboy bio, Kelly Monaco got into modeling for the publication in the mid-'90s after she submitted a snapshot of herself. Monaco was April 1997's Playmate of the Month, and while she didn't achieve Playmate of the Year, she continued working with the company for several years, appearing in several videos. While she was a successful model, Monaco steered her career toward acting. 

Monaco's first acting gig was three episodes of "Baywatch," and she continued showing up in various TV series for several years. In 2000, Monaco won the leading role of Livvie Locke on "Port Charles," which had her appear in 305 episodes. Later, she became the first winner of "Dancing with the Stars." Still, her work on "General Hospital" made Monaco a household name. She joined the cast in 2003 as Sam McCall. She's continued in that role for over 20 years, appearing in more than 2,100 episodes throughout that time. 

Monaco doesn't appear in the news often, telling Soap Opera Digest, "I'm not out in the Hollywood scene. I don't drink, so I'm not into clubs. [My friends and I] usually just sit home and play dominoes or card games. Or else we go to Big Bear, Las Vegas, or Palm Springs." In 2022, she made headlines — but not for a happy reason. Her Sherman Oaks, California, home was almost destroyed by a fire. According to TMZ, the blaze was started by a lit cigarette butt left on a nearby property. 

Karen McDougal said she had an affair with Donald Trump

Once upon a time, Karen McDougal was a preschool teacher. Her career path took a sharp turn, however, after she won a Venus Swimwear International Model Search. One thing led to another, and she was posing for Playboy magazine. She was named Miss December in 1997 and Playmate of the Year in 1998. McDougal appeared in several videos for Playboy before setting out to a broader industry.  

McDougal has been featured in numerous fitness magazines, including Muscle & Fitness and Men's Journal. In addition to finding success as a fitness model, the Playboy alum has had several roles in various movies and TV series, including "Charlie's Angels," "Joe Dirt," and "The Girl Next Door." Her last film credit was "Anger Management" in 2013.  She's also an advocate for breast implant illness awareness, and had her implants removed in 2017. "I still have to go through a detox process to get rid of all the toxins in my body, but it's definitely an improvement. I feel like I can actually live and enjoy life now," she told People.

In 2016, McDougal made headlines when word got out about a ten-month affair she allegedly had with former President Donald Trump. She was reportedly paid $150,000 by AMI to give the National Enquirer the exclusive scoop, but according to the model, the story was intentionally buried. Per NBC News, a legal battle involving campaign finance violations, the FEC, and a fine of $187,500 followed. 

Heather Kozar is featured in some of Jeff Koons' works

They say I'm a hip '90s version of Marilyn," Heather Kozar once told Orlando Sentinel. Her Marilyn Monroe-esque look sure worked well for her. She got her start in modeling thanks to the Hawaiian Tropic USA pageant. Per the New York Post, she then won the National Midwest Bikini Contest in 1996. Kozar was chosen as Playboy's Playmate of the Month for the January 1998 issue. The following year, she was named the magazine's Playmate of the Year and used her success to launch a television career. In 2001, she became one of Barker's Beauties for "The Price is Right," which she did for 213 episodes.   

Per the Tampa Bay Times, Kozar was fired from the show because of scheduling conflicts. After her gig with "The Price is Right" ended, Kozar returned to Playboy and appeared in several videos over the next four years, including "Playboy: Wet & Wild Live!," which she hosted. Kozar was married to Cleveland Browns quarterback Tim Couch from 2005 to 2019.

Kozar has had a successful modeling career, which has landed her gigs with LIP INK, Wendy's, Jiffy Lube, and Cutty Sark Scotch Whisky. She's als been the subject of several paintings by Jeff Koons. Most notably, her pictorial is represented in "Triple Elvis," which sold in 2015 for $8.6 million, according to Sotheby's. The painting is an homage to Andy Warhol's 1963 painting of the same name.

Jodi Ann Paterson raced into love

After Jodi Ann Paterson earned her degree at Oregon State University and got a job at a local news station, she decided to try out for Playboy on a whim. In 1999, Paterson was selected as Miss October, and the following year, she became the Playmate of the Year, making her the first college graduate to receive the honor, per the New York Post. Regarding her degree, Paterson told the Post, "If I'm applying for a job, I would rather turn in more than just a picture of me nude." 

Paterson didn't remain with Playboy exclusively and managed to grace the cover of the October/November issue of Perfect 10 in 2000. While modeling kept her busy for a few years, Paterson tried her hand at acting. She played the Super Hot Giant Alien in "Dude, Where's My Car?" and she appeared on "Roswell" and "Spy TV." As of this writing, her last credit is the 2008 film "Toxic."

Paterson has somewhat faded into the background as the 2010s continued. She married 1991 CART series champion Michael Andretti in October 2006, and they have remained together ever since. Paterson and Andretti have two children and live in Indiana. These days, Michael spends most of his time working as the owner of Andretti Autosport.