Playboy March 2016 by Theo Wenner

(Photo: Courtesy Playboy/Theo Wenner)

I was a bit skeptical when the news broke that Playboy would be covering up. The nude mag had always occupied a space in my brain that was reserved for the odd, guilty pleasures that stacked up from working for the Internet. The coveted bylines of Playboy were still there, but the photos no longer did anything for me. This drastic change, though, completely piqued my interest.

So when the photos dropped this morning, I was incredibly surprised. Had the Playboy title not been on the cover photo, I would’ve never known. It felt like an editorial photoshoot rather than a raunchy exposé. It felt relaxed, something I never thought Playboy would be and something I’m seriously glad it’s striving for.

The March 2016 issue’s cover features a Snapchat-inspired caption and Snapchat/Instagram model Sarah McDaniel. Much to my surprise, I absolutely love this cover. It feels young and hip, but also, and most obviously, sexy. A lot of times, when you think of Playboy, you think of over the top setups to showcase a woman’s boobs or vag, but what I think this new spin has done is brought attention to what’s really sexy: the woman herself.

The coveted centerfold goes to Miss March 2016, Dree Hemingway, who is giving me major early Meryl Streep vibes. It’s demure but sultry and the simple cotton undies paired with a ruffled blouse really feels natural. “The idea was to look at me from a boyfriend’s perspective,” said McDaniel in a press release. And that is exactly what these images reminds me of.

Miss March 2016 Dree Hemingway Centerfold by Angelo Pennetta

(Photo: Courtesy Playboy/Angelo Pennetta)

While this isn’t technically a “non-nude” issue (there are some butts here or there), it does feel buttoned up for Playboy, in the best way possible. Playboy was always about celebrating the female body and especially with the changing of times, it feels like Playboy has made true to that statement. It’s evolving, just like the culture is.

The March 2016 issue is on stands (without the binder) on Friday, February 12th.