There’s only one thing that could distract viewers from the brutal and competitive bouts seen on UFC broadcasts: the ring girls. In good shape, scantily clad and wearing big smiles, these eye-catching women have the straightforward task of walking into the ring between rounds and lifting up a round placard.
Serving as eye candy, a ring girl’s job is full of surprising details. We’re going to look at some of the surprising details behind these beautiful and friendly ring girls who have very different lives behind the scenes than the masses would expect.
MMA diehards should also be sure to check out 20 little known facts about Ronda Rousey.
20 They Date Fighters
With UFC fighters and ring girls running into each other in the same workspace, it’s only natural they’d hook up.
The site Sport.ONE has a whole list of UFC ring girls who dated fighters, from Arianny Celeste and Josh Burkman to Brittney Palmer and Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone to Ali Sonoma and Diego Sanchez.
19 They Know How To Fight
It would appear that UFC ring girls—being around fighters and trainers all the time—also possess some fighting skills.
The site Bloody Elbow reports that court documents in a case from 2016, surrounding UFC ring girl Brittney Palmer, allude to her having "world-class, deadly skills taught in MMA.”
18 They Get Marriage Proposals From Strangers
Being a ring girl has both its perks and its downsides. One ring girl admitted to Fox News that she’s gotten flowers and pizza, which are welcome gifts in any job.
The other side of the coin, however, is they get marriage proposals and guys that follow them around, which makes it a less glamorous job.
17 They Use The UFC To Kickstart Careers In Modeling And TV
Arianny Celeste has been a ring girl in the UFC for a long time. She’s also managed to use the UFC’s platform as a launching pad for other careers.
Fox News reports that she does modeling on the side and even landed a role as a reality TV show host.
16 They Posed For Hugh Hefner
Being a ring girl is essentially a form of modeling; that’s why posing for Playboy seems like a natural and lucrative next step. Plenty of UFC ring girls have posed for Playboy.
The site MMA Insight reports that UFC ring girls Rachelle Leah, Arianny Celeste and Chandella Powell have all appeared in the popular magazine.
15 They Become Invested In Fighters’ Careers
UFC fighters and ring girls are like coworkers that grow alongside each other over the years. According to Diply, they form relationships with the fighters and even get emotionally invested when their favorite fighters succeed.
With so many UFC fighters coming and going over the years, they witness the rise and fall of many fighters’ careers.
14 They Make More Money Than Entry-Level UFC Fighters
Looking at all the careers the UFC offers, it seems most likely that the ones who dress up in bikinis and walk around with signs smiling would get paid the least amount. That assumption couldn’t be further from the truth, however.
According to Fox News, a ring girl can get anywhere between $30,000 to $75,000 per year, which is more than entry-level fighters get at $8,000 per fight.
13 They Get Pinched In The Rear By Coworkers
It seems that Bruce Buffer, a ring announcer for the UFC, once pinched Arianny Celeste on the bum. Fox Sports reported on it back in November 2013, noting that Celeste even jumped a little after it happened.
There’s no telling how this sort of action made Celeste feel deep down and may offer a glimpse into the type of working conditions ring girls face.
12 They Aren’t Fight Fans
Many ring girls enter the UFC without much knowledge of MMA.
In a Reddit AMA, long-time ring girl Arianny Celeste said, “I wasn’t a fight fan at first but now I am!” While it’s hard to believe they don’t go into it as fans, to them it’s probably just another gig.
11 They Get Fluid On Them While Ringside
UFC is a bloody sport, so it’s no wonder this happens to ring girls. According to the site Diply, ring girls admitted to getting hit with sweat and even other things from the fights taking place within the octagon.
If there’s one downside to having front row seats at UFC fight, it has to be this.
10 They’re Influenced By The Sport They Work In By Beating Up Their Significant Others
One UFC girl went to court with her husband, where documents claimed she beat up her husband, Aaron Zalewski (Bloody Elbow).
She’s not the only UFC ring girl to go postal on her significant other. Arianny Celeste also caused harm to her then-boyfriend Praveen Chandra in 2012 and it landed her in jail, which we explore in greater detail below.
9 They Don’t Get Along With Female Fighters
Female UFC fighters have beef with ring girls and aren’t afraid to make it known. One outspoken critic is Ronda Rousey, who pointed out that fighters do more than ring girls do and deserve to get paid more for it.
Arianny Celeste disagreed, putting her and the fighter on bad terms.
8 They Aren’t Always Sober Leading Up To Work
Edith Labelle was a UFC ring girl from 2007 to 2009. According to MMA Insight, she got fired for something that happened at UFC 100.
The same source notes that she drank a few too many the night before and wasn’t able to work the fight as a result.
7 They Can Choose Their Bikini Style, As Long As They’re Not Popping Out
It seems like UFC ring girls wouldn’t have a say in what they wear; it’s hard to imagine they’d really prefer prancing around with so little on.
Yet a report by Diply indicates they at least get to choose the style of bikini they wish to wear, as long as it’s PG-13.
6 There’s No Training Necessary For The Job
Most jobs require training with some taking workers several months to get the hang of things, but that's not the case for UFC girls. According to Diply, there’s no training process they need to go through.
However, many of them come from modeling backgrounds, which equips them with a few helpful skills that carry over.
5 Fighters Have Fallen Out Of The Ring—Onto Ring Girls
Even fighters find a way to fall out of the octagon every once in a while. In a report by Diply, there are times where fighters fell out of the ring and landed on ring girls, who usually occupy the best seats in the house.
Let’s hope it only happened in the lighter weight divisions.
4 They Have Brushes With The Law
Touched on earlier, UFC ring girl Arianny Celeste got in an altercation with her then-boyfriend in 2012 that led to her arrest.
According to Las Vegas Sun, her boyfriend at the time claimed Celeste kicked him in the nose. That’s what led to Celeste's mugshot seen here, suggesting that even UFC ring girls get into encounters with enforcement.
3 Their Job Entails Walking Around And Blowing Kisses—But They Still Practice
It may look like most UFC ring girls are doing a menial job, but that’s just because they make it look easy.
Diply reports that even something as simple as stepping into the ring takes practice since the outfits make it more challenging. The job may not entail much, but they put in the practice.
2 They Share Food With Each Other At Fights
UFC ring girls probably don’t have enough time to buy food on their lunch breaks. Fights are long demanding events, which might explain why ring girls both bring and share food at fights.
Diply reports that ring girls share food they bring, making events like a big potluck for ring girls.
1 They Work Out Constantly
It’s important for UFC ring girls to stay in shape if they want to look good in their outfits. There are several exercise and dietary rules Arianny Celeste follows to maintain her physique.
In a story with Fab Fit Fun, Celeste works out up to five times a week and considers fitness part of her lifestyle.
Sources: Fox News, Bloody Elbow, Fab Fit Fun, Reddit, Fox Sports, Diply, Las Vegas Sun, MMA Insight, Sport.ONE