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Vintage Playboy Magazine Collections: Junk or Not Junk?

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Playboy has been in print for long enough that older issues can seem collectible. While early issues in mint condition can be valuable, most magazines will be worth less than $10, probably hovering around $1.This is true regardless of how many consecutive magazines you may own.

Playboy Magazine Collection

Marilyn Monroe is the Classic Issue

The first Playboy issue featured the famous star in 1953 with her trademark grin and golden curls. One such copy has sold for $2000 on an eBay auction since it’s relatively rare being over 50 years from its original publication. Although various stars have graced the covers, those issues won’t come close to the value of Marilyn’s, such as:

  • Sophia Loren
  • Cindy Crawford
  • Madonna
  • Raquel Welch

Other Notable Issues

The following copies that are in good condition can command between $30 and $40:

  1. 100 of the most beautiful women from the past century were celebrated in the January, 2000 issue.
  2. An early milestone issue, the January, 1979 issue marked the publication’s 25th anniversary with Candy Loving as the centerfold model.
  3. In the January, 1981 issues, Yoko Ono and John Lennon were interviewed for the magazine.
  4. The magazine’s trademark symbol, a bunny’s silhouette, was the thing of beauty that readers first admired in the June, 1957 issue.
  5. Ayn Rand was interviewed in the March, 1964 issue, which makes this the most intellectual issue that’s sought after on this list.
  6. October, 1977 embraced Barbra Streisand on the cover and for an interview.
  7. Jane Fonda and Cynthia Myers make two of the issues of 1968 desirable for collectors.
  8. Andy Warhol made the cover of this January, 1986 issue, making him the only issue to be made valuable by a man.
  9. Cindy Crawford stands out from the competition as one of the sexiest women to be featured in Playboy magazine in the July, 1988 issue.

At this stage, you can sort the valuable issues from the less collectable ones and take steps to either store them properly to prevent it from damage (moisture, fading, and other deteriorating factors). For all the other issues, consider selling them at a garage sale or simply removing them from your home altogether.

Written January 30, 2015 by Christopher Luciano

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