In 2016, any given episode of WWE’s Monday Night Raw or SmackDown Live is guaranteed fun for the whole family. For many years now the company has been dedicated to producing a PG product, something evidenced by less cursing, less violent matches and the women wearing more clothes. Men and women haven’t even been able to come in contact with one another in a very long time because WWE doesn’t want to send the message that they’re trying to normalize domestic violence. They’ve embraced social movements such as LGBT rights and have been heavily involved in charity work and fighting bullying. Needless to say, they’ve been quite dedicated to their wholesome image.
Sometimes, though, things still don’t go as planned.WWE Superstars still occasionally get busted open when blood is essentially taboo in the company and wrestlers still sometimes accidentally drop inappropriate language on live television. Other times, though less frequently, an on screen personality will suffer the inadvertent exposure of a little too much skin for the family audience.
That, however, is the PG era which is currently in effect. Before now, wrestling was known for many years as being quite risqué. It all started in the late ‘90s with the Attitude Era when it was commonplace – expected, even – that the women on television during wrestling hours were likely to wind up in almost no clothing whatsoever. Wardrobe malfunctions were frequent, especially when the women were wearing next to nothing to begin with. However, wardrobe malfunctions are not limited to just the female performers in WWE. Here are fifteen of the worst occurrences of a Superstar’s wardrobe causing all sorts of problems.
15 Trish Stratus
In 2001, Trish Stratus’s star power was rapidly on the rise as only a couple of years earlier she had debuted as the less than charismatic manager of the team of Test and Albert, known as T&A, and at this point she was now right in the middle of the McMahon family drama. There was certainly no brighter spotlight to have been shone on a female WWE Superstar at this time, because the McMahons and their dysfunction were one of the hottest things on WWE television.
Trish was playing the mistress of one Vince McMahon and his daughter Stephanie was not pleased about it. Trish and Stephanie loathed one another and it came to a head at the No Way Out pay-per-view when the two women met in a wrestling match. That match made history as it showed that both women knew how to carry a match, but it was also a popular contest for another reason. At some point during the match, Stephanie tugged on Trish’s shorts, which rode completely up her rear end. However, that's not the wardrobe malfunction in question here. During the match, Trish's shorts was the victim of an accidental wedgie and half of her rear-was exposed for a good chuck of time.
14 Lilian Garcia
As one of the longest tenured female employees ever to work for World Wrestling Entertainment, Lilian Garcia has cultivated what is surely an announcing career that is surely worthy of a WWE Hall of Fame induction. After getting started in the late 1990s, Garcia quickly rose to the position famed ring announcer Howard Finkel held for so very long, revolutionizing the job as a woman who had become the voice of WWE. Lilian became one of the most beloved WWE employees of all time, warming up the crowds with her voice by singing the American national anthem before each show.
No one is perfect, however, and that includes the amazing Lilian Garcia. Before retiring in 2016, Lilian had developed somewhat of a reputation for tripping herself up during her entrance into the arena. This went on, happening a few times until finally on one occasion her left shoe compeltely malfunctioned and caused her to nearly right to the floor. Ever the professional, Lilian picked herself up and laughed it off.
13 Shawn Michaels
Shawn Michaels, known by several other monikers such as “The Heartbreak Kid” and “Mr. WrestleMania,” is one of the most respected wrestlers in the entire industry. Known not for his household name value, but the pure wrestling ability and charisma which made him a massive success, he’s seen as one of the most solid performers to ever lace up a pair of boots. Michaels developed a reputation for being able to have a great match with nearly any other wrestler of any skill level.
For all his myriad championship wins and iconic classic matches, even WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels isn’t immune to the perils of a wardrobe malfunction. Throughout most of his career he was famous for his elaborate, flamboyant gear and, one night on Monday Night Raw, that came back to bite him when a piece of his very complex entrance costume got caught in the ramp and he was stuck for several uncomfortable seconds. He was forced to remove the top just to free himself and he left obviously flustered.
In another example of how WWE’s male Superstars are not exempt from the accidental exposure of too much skin, former multiple time World Champion Batista once experienced his own wardrobe malfunction. It wasn’t the most graphic of exposures, but it was certainly humiliating, especially because it happened on live television and internet wrestling fans are nothing if not completely ruthless.
The man known as “The Animal” has a lot of pride. His entire character was based around his strong, mostly silent demeanor, a shtick that got saw him hold his own through wars with the likes of The Undertaker, Triple H, Randy Orton, John Cena and more. Batista was never used to being on the business end of a joke, so when he made his return a few years ago only to be met with boos by fans who had long outgrown him, he ended up leaving the company with a chip on his shoulder. But that wasn’t before he had an altercation with Randy Orton during which Batista’s jeans split right below the crotch. Fans instantly poked fun at him for wearing skinny jeans of all things.
11 AJ Lee
Few female Superstars have captured the affection of the WWE Universe in the last decade the way that AJ Lee did. In a time when women in WWE were still referred to as “Divas,” AJ Lee broke the mold of what the term was supposed to mean. She rebelliously wrestled in a t-shirt, shorts and high top Chuck Taylor sneakers and made it a point to call the more typically feminine women out on their priorities.
AJ was in WWE to be a wrestler and she would not pretend to be anything other than what she was: a nerdy tomboy. She refused to succumb to pressure to show skin to get ahead, but on one night. during a SmackDown match. her t-shirt flew up to her neck and exposed her bra and because it was perhaps the most exposure AJ Lee’s body ever received, fans went wild.
Ariane Andrew, known professionally as Cameron, performed for WWE for several years, getting her foot in the door with the reality competition show Tough Enough and really rising to fame alongside Naomi as the dancing tandem known as The Funkadactyls, which accompanied WWE Superstar Brodus Clay to the ring. After splitting from her partner, Cameron failed to impress in embarking upon her singles career. She wasn’t naturally gifted in the ring and fans weren’t buying into her character.
Cameron struggled with wrestling to the point that she went back to WWE’s developmental territory, NXT, to work on her craft before she was eventually released. Before NXT, though, she competed at WrestleMania XXX as part of a multi-woman match for the Divas Championship and it was during this match that Cameron’s top broke apart at the back and she had to finish while holding onto it to avoid completely exposing herself.
9 Shawn Michaels - WrestleMania X
We’ve already discussed an embarrassing moment involving WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels where his elaborate gear got snagged on the ramp during his entrance on an episode of Monday Night Raw. Though flustered, he dusted himself off and carried on with the show following that debacle, but that was far from the worst wardrobe malfunction The Heartbreak Kid has suffered. In fact, the man known as “Mr. WrestleMania” has actually had a few unintentionally revealing moments on the grandest stage of them all.
At WrestleMania X, during the history making ladder match between Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon for the Intercontinental Championship, the viewers at home and in the audience got a lot more than they bargained for. As Michaels was climbing the ladder in the middle of the match, Ramon reached up to grab his tights to stop him but inadvertently pulled down Michaels’ tights, exposing his behind to the world.
If you blinked, you might have missed Kaitlyn’s time on top in WWE. The former powerhouse Diva was only around for a few years and only spent a brief time truly in the spotlight. However, she managed to have a rivalry with her real life friend and then-fellow Diva, AJ Lee, that held together a very lackluster women’s division. Kaitlyn and AJ were once tag team partners before their on-screen relationship grew sour and the Divas Championship got between them.
It was during this rivalry that the heroine Kaitlyn experienced her very own wardrobe malfunction. Kaitlyn had a rather large male following, so the eyes were always on her when she was on camera. That’s the only reason it was noticed when Kaitlyn suffered an ever so subtle slip-up during a physical confrontation with her arch rival. Kaitlyn quickly adjusted her top to cover up the incident, but it didn’t erase the fact that it happened.
7 Brie Bella
The Bella Twins have been staples in WWE's women’s division for as long as just about anyone can remember. Twin sisters Nikki and Brie came along at a time when women were still very blatantly treated as a special attraction at a wrestling show instead of actually being part of it and they even competed in the Diva Search, a competition that historically focused on looks over talent. It was because of this that the Bella Twins got a reputation for being models who had no interest in wrestling, but the fact of the matter is that over the years they both became very good wrestlers and were never models to begin with.
While Nikki Bella carries on her wrestling career to this day, Brie has officially retired to a quiet life with her husband Daniel Bryan and hopes to start a family. She’ll forever be remembered as helping carry the Divas division, but she’ll also be remembered for an infamous wardrobe malfunction she suffered when she and the rest of the cast of Total Divas were on a “Miz TV” segment and her breast started to fall out of her dress. She later apologized and said the humidity caused her tape to give out.
Amy Dumas is one of the most influential people of any gender to ever compete within the ropes of a wrestling ring. As Lita, she revolutionized women’s wrestling during the Attitude Era and beyond with her high-flying style, something never seen before from a female competitor. Her storied rivalry with her on screen arch rival and real life best friend Trish Stratus has been celebrated for years and will likely always be credited as one of the reasons women’s wrestling was ever put on the map in any meaningful way.
Lita and Trish Stratus may have claimed the first ever women’s main event of Monday Night Raw, but eventually she’d become equally known for her real life love triangle with Edge and Matt Hardy. Once this news started to spread, art imitated life and Lita was placed with Edge on screen. She took a more passive role, helping Edge win his own matches instead of competing in them herself and, when Edge won the WWE Championship, the couple celebrated on Raw with a “live sex celebration.” Edge and Lita literally got naked under the sheets of a bed inside the ring and at some point the blankets were pulled and Lita’s breasts were very quickly exposed to the live cameras.
5 Stephanie McMahon
Whether she’s loved or she’s hated, Stephanie McMahon has done an excellent job of being the modern version of her father, Vince McMahon. Vince was the ultimate authority figure for many years, overbearing and incredibly demanding. That’s exactly what Stephanie McMahon has been for years now on television and she’s done it with style. It can be argued that no wrestler in all of WWE has the charisma or acting ability of one Stephanie McMahon.
She can wrestle when she’s needed as well. She’s not the best mat technician, but Stephanie’s proved more than once that she can perform in the ring and before the PG era came along she was in plenty of confrontations with men, including her husband Triple H. During a particular scene in the Attitude Era, she and Triple H were at odds and Triple H was setting Stephanie up for a Pedigree. With Stephanie bent over and her arms locked behind her, her breast fell out and there was little she could do about it. Stephanie has referred to this as her most embarrassing moment in wrestling.
4 Nikki Bella
We already discussed how The Bella Twins made their way to the WWE, so we don't really need to re-hash that here. What we do want to further emphasize is that Nikki Bella has improved by leaps and bounds since her WWE debut and deserves a lot more credit for what she brings to the WWE. While Brie has moved on to retirement, Nikki remains the most recognizable female face on SmackDown Live and will likely be in the picture for the Women's Championship at some point in the near future.
Like her sister, she's also had to deal with a wardrobe malfunction of her own. During an episode of Raw back in 2014, the camera was zoomed in on Nikki Bella as she was lying on the ground outside of the ring. Well, it quickly had to pan away, as Nikki's top was showing a little more than she wanted.
3 Rosa Mendes
Sometimes it’s difficult to remember if Rosa Mendes is even still under contract with WWE. She’s technically been on the roster for a very long time, having gotten her start in the WWE Diva Search, but she’s rarely been used and never in any meaningful way. Rosa has hardly won any matches in her entire wrestling career, mostly having been relegated to managerial roles as she has accompanied the likes of Fandango and the team of Primo & Epico to the ring. She has, however, been a frequent cast member on Total Divas and has recently become a mother.
A couple of years ago, Mendes got into some hot water with WWE officials over a pretty big wardrobe malfunction which happened during one of her rare wrestling matches. During the contest, Rosa’s bottoms were pulled nearly completely off her, exposing her rear end to everyone.
Jacqueline was one of the most impressive athletes, male or female, to ever wrestle for WWE. It’s been said that she was such a good wrestler that she had to tone down her style to believably fight the other women on their own level and that she, in fact, could have wrestled circles around most men. Jacqueline won the Women’s Championship and even captured the Cruiserweight Championship at one time, a title usually competed for exclusively by men. In 2016, Jacqueline was recognized for all of her accomplishments with an induction into the WWE Hall of Fame.
As one of the pioneers for black women wrestlers everywhere, it’s difficult to imagine that the no-nonsense Jacqueline would have been involved in such risqué storylines as women tended to participate in during the Attitude Era. Indeed, Jackie was involved in an on-screen love triangle with Marco Mero and Sable. During one segment, they were competing in a bikini contest and one of Jacqueline's breasts popped up during her dance.
1 Dawn Marie
Wrestling fans who followed Paul Heyman’s rebellious Extreme Championship Wrestling program are well aware of what Dawn Marie had to offer. In that organization, she was a popular manager and was involved in a memorable rivalry alongside wrestler Lance Storm as they feuded with Chris Candido and Tammy Lynn Sytch, who was known for her time in WWE as Sunny. Dawn Marie’s natural talent for entertaining a wrestling crowd eventually carried her to WWE where she was involved in the storyline she’s perhaps best known for. It was a rivalry with Torrie Wilson that saw Dawn marry Torrie’s father, who eventually “died” of a heart attack after too much sex.
During this storyline Dawn and Torrie competed against one another in several matches, including one at Judgment Day in 2004 where Dawn Marie would experience one of the worst wardrobe malfunctions in all of wrestling. At some point, her tights were torn and her entire bottom came loose. Dawn Marie continued the match all the way to the finish, but fans, in the arena and at home, received much more than they bargained for.