Jayne Mansfield (1933-1967) was an American actress, singer and pin-up model, whose film roles and sensational publicity stunts made her a household name across America in the 1950s.
Mansfield began her career as a pin-up model and beauty queen, who posed for Playboy and held titles including Miss Photoflash, Miss Electric Switch and Miss Geiger Counter.
She later found success on stage, first in local theatre and then on Broadway with a role in play 'Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?', before being 'discovered' by 20th Century Fox, who saw her as the natural successor to Marilyn Monroe.
Although her movie career was relatively short-lived, Mansfield had memorable starring roles in films such as The Girl Can't Help It (1956), the screen adaptation of Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (1957), 'The Wayward Bus' (1957), and Too Hot to Handle (1960).
She also caused a sensation when she became the first mainstream actress to appear nude in a Hollywood film, with her role in the sexploitation comedy Promises! Promises! (1963).
In her later years Mansfield made numerous TV appearances, and even appeared in her own Las Vegas striptease review. She was tragically killed along with two other passengers in a car crash in Mississippi in June 1967.
Jayne Mansfield was one of Hollywood's leading sex symbols in the late 1950s, and was known as one of the original 'blonde bombshells' alongside Marilyn Monroe and Mamie Van Doren.
In reality Mansfield was a natural brunette, and years having her hair bleached platinum blonde by the studios took their toll.
From around 1960 until the end of her life, she wore a series of wigs to maintain her public image without damaging her hair any further.
On the night Mansfield died she was wearing one of those wigs, and gruesome photographs of the accident scene pictured it amongst the wreckage of her car – leading to an urban myth that she had been decapitated in the car crash.
This custom-made wig was personally owned and worn by Jayne Mansfield during the later years of her life, and was gifted to her close friend Mrs Amanda Holden in 1965.