LMFAO 'Bikini Girl' Says She Was Fired For Being 'Big Boned'
Stephanie Arakel shook her thang on stage with LMFAO for the better part of the year in 2009, just as they were blowing up. Only 21 years old, she quit her job, strapped on a polka dot bikini, and traveled all over the country with them. You can see her downing drinks in the "Shots" music video, below.
Photo courtesy of Stephanie Arakel
But despite becoming a fan favorite, by the end of the year, she was fired in an email. Her great offense? Being "big boned," she says. (Representatives from the duo's management and record label did not respond to requests for comment.)
Today, Arakel opens the door to her boyfriend's San Fernando Valley home clad in an oversized T-shirt. It's clear she takes good care of herself, which makes the alleged reason for her firing seem dubious.
She's eager to talk about her new career managing her rapper boyfriend, whose name is Jayoh Jr., and launching a record label called Unlimited Intellectual Property. But she eventually begins peeling back the LMFAO onion.
While she was working reception at an L.A.-based woman's clothing company in 2008, a fellow employee drew her into the nightlife scene. One morning she received a text from a guy she'd met the night before -- it was LMFAO member RedFoo, though Arakel had no idea who he was.
He invited her to his New Year's Eve show and, when the girl they had hired to dance fell through, asked Arakel to step in. She wasn't paid, but was given a giant zebra pimp coat to complement her bikini, though naturally the coat came off at the hype man's call.
Photo courtesy of Stephanie Arakel With Ryan Seacrest
She was soon brought on board as the first "official" LMFAO bikini girl, paid in cash after each show.
"The next thing I knew I was quitting my job and I went on the road," she says, adding that she performed with them for nine months in 2009, getting paid to party day and night. About the only time she could find to sleep was on airplanes between cities.