October is known as breast cancer awareness month and while most major sports like the NFL do participate in the awareness campaign, MMA isn’t known to participate too much unless one is referring to Bellator. For the occasion I thought it’d be appropriate to cover the top 10 ring girls in MMA. These women have at some point graced a cage or ring and are ranked based on their viability and looks. However, because of the number of women who are in this profession, I will first present this honorable mentions list:
Edith Labelle – former Octagon Girl from UFC 78 until UFC 100, released afterwards and went into B-movies. Started in TKO organization.
Chandella Powell – former Octagon Girl now mother, still on good terms with Arianny Celeste. Also former Playboy Club waitress.
Ali Sonoma – former Octagon Girl who won a Maxim Octagon Girl and served from 2006 until 2007 when she left the organization.
Carly Baker – current Octagon Girl from Great Britain serving alongside Arianny Celeste and Brittany Palmer on UFC pay-per-views.
Logan Stanton – former Octagon Girl who served from 2008 until 2009 when she was released alongside Natasha Wicks, now retired.
Jhenny Andrade – the first of the Brazilian Octagon Girls who first appeared at UFC 163 and is now a part of the Brazilian team.
Camila Oliveira – won a Brazilian Octagon Girl competition during The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3, now a part of the Brazilian team.
Jessica Cambensy – a member of the Octagon Girl Asia team, first appeared at UFC on Fuel TV 6. Now appears on most UFC Asian cards.
With that let’s take a look at the women are are most notable in MMA for their work in the ring or cage in between the rounds:
10) Natasha Wicks
Natasha Wicks first appeared in the Octagon after winning the 2009 Maxim UFC Octagon Girl Search. While it was good seeing her alongside Arianny Celeste and Logan Stanton, Wicks and Stanton were released shortly after Wicks started on the job. No official reason was given as to why the two were released, though a few rumors went around such as comments the two made about Josh Koscheck. Wicks however, kept busy and is now an Invicta Girl. It’s nice to see her still ringing in the rounds for another organization.
9) Vanessa Hanson
One of two Strikeforce imports, Vanessa Hanson came into the UFC in 2011 alongside Chrissy Blair. Officially Hanson and Blair entered the UFC because they won a Transworld model competition, however their time in the defunct promotion certainly had a part in the decision to bring them over. Hanson for her part is a Southern California native who walks around at the UFC’s newest weight class. Since she and Blair debuted at UFC 136, the two have become a part of the Fight Night team. Most likely she will be around for a while longer.
8) Chrissy Blair
The blonde to Vanessa Hanson‘s brunette, Chrissy Blair is the second Strikeforce import that has graced the Octagon since 2011. Considering that the girls were two out of six Strikeforce girls to make it into the UFC is saying something. As with the aforementioned Hanson, Blair appears primarily in the UFC Fight Nights with a few exceptions along with the B-team commentators. That in no means takes away from her sex appeal as women like her only get better with experience. The two also appear occasionally on pay-per-views.
7) Jade Bryce
Jade Bryce is primarily known as the one of the ring girls for UFC rival Bellator MMA. Partnered alongside Mercedes Terrell, the two appear on all of the Bellator cards and all of the promotional events. In addition to her time as a ring girl, Bryce has also dabbled into acting which is not uncommon for several of the girls on this list. What isn’t so common is the fact that she has appeared in Playboy. This makes her the first non-UFC ring girl to in MMA to appear in the magazine alongside mainstays Arianny Celeste and Brittany Palmer.
6) Mercedes Terrell
The other half of the Bellator girl team, Mercedes Terrell is as much a part of the promotion as Jade Bryce. While she is known in the MMA world for her role in Bellator, it isn’t the first sport in which she has made herself known. Terrell has also appeared in Supercross events such as with Monster Energy. Unlike her partner in the ring, Terrell does not have a desire to pose for Playboy. However, there is no real need for her to do so as her good looks are enough for a guy to drool over her.
5) Holly Madison
Holly Madison is probably the most famous Octagon Girl who walked the cage as a guest and not as a professional. Madison had already established herself as a name in modeling primarily in Playboy. She also appeared in a few reality shows related to her life in Playboy. Despite all this she had a dream of becoming an Octagon Girl and when Dana White got wind of this he couldn’t refuse. Madison appeared in UFC 100 and UFC 125 with a standing invitation from White to come back whenever she wants.
4) Amber Nichole Miller
An earlier Octagon Girl, Amber Nichole Miller served in the UFC from UFC 40 in 2003 to sometime in 2007. The exact reasons as to why she left was is unknown, though one rumor was that she had a disagreement with Dana White. Either way Miller has been busy having been a model for Xyience. At present she is dating former UFC Champion Tito Ortiz. One wonders how long that will last.
3) Brittany Palmer
Brittany Palmer along with Arianny Celeste are examples of how someone can be built into their own brands outside of the UFC, whether fighter or Octagon Girl. Palmer was an the only WEC import and an example of the legacy of the late promotion. She has since become a mainstay of the UFC and always appears along Celeste primarily on the pay-per-views. She is also the second Octagon Girl to appear in Playboy. As with most of the women on this list she has established herself in other fields.
2) Rachelle Leah
There is no denying the fact that Rachelle Leah is a big name Octagon Girl who has become much bigger then the name. First appearing in the Octagon in 2003, Leah at one point was the only Octagon Girl before mainstay Arianny Celeste made her debut. Leah began appearing in other programming related to the UFC and at the time Spike TV which was the UFC’s television partner. There came a point where other projects drew Leah away from the Octagon, but she did make a comeback at UFC 111. Since then she’s gone back to the other projects.
1) Arianny Celeste
If there is any woman who is the definition of the Octagon Girl or ring girl in general it’s Arianny Celeste. Celeste girl appeared in the UFC back in 2006. She has since had the privilege of serving as Octagon Girl through many historic advances for both the UFC and the sport overall. She’s also established enough of a relationship with Dana White that he stood by her despite a domestic violence charge and a feud with Ronda Rousey. As with the above mentioned Brittany Palmer, Celeste is her own brand and has appeared in other programming.