Behind the Stripes in the Ben-Gals Closet PDF Print E-mail
Written by Kirsten Schaffer   
Wednesday, 03 March 2010 10:08

Behind the Stripes in the Ben-Gals Closet
Those cute skirts and shiny poms aren't just fashionable. They're functional, too! Take a behind the scenes look at the wardrobe of the Ben-Gal cheerleaders.

It's a Friday night, and a cheery, chatty group of girls are eating dinner at a Cincinnati hotspot. Dressed in black numbered Bengals jerseys, fitted denim jeans and bright white bows, they're carrying on like a close-knit group of girlfriends getting ready to watch a big game. Except it's February, and these women aren't the average group of girls.

They're actually the Ben-Gal cheerleaders out to dinner with a private party. The rest of the weekend, they'll be appearing at a few charity events, assisting a car show, and getting ready for next week's line-up of appearances and activities. And you can bet their attire will be fierce.

"We do a lot of charity work in the off-season and a lot of appearances, so we have different looks," says Tara, an eight-year veteran of the Ben-Gals squad. "Generally, with charity events, we're a bit more relaxed, [wearing our] jerseys. We're only in our game-day outfits for big appearances." she said.

The Ben-Gals' schedule stays busy during the off-season, and about 80 percent of their time as a Ben-Gal cheerleader is spent off the field, Tara says. Along with the regular season, they have many appearances and events to attend throughout the year. Being a part of the squad is a full-time commitment, and most of the cheerleaders have full-time jobs or are completing their degrees. From a doctoral candidate to a chemical engineering major to a high school English teacher, these girls represent a wide range of talents and professions.

Cincy Chic
took a behind-the-scenes look at the Ben-Gals closet at Paul Brown Stadium. Click the play button below to take a tour!

Keeping up Appearances

So how do these bright and intelligent women keep their looks fresh out on the field?

"Oh gosh, I would probably say about eight pounds of makeup, lots of hairspray, and a great smile," says Lindsay, who has been on the squad for two years. "We get here early in the morning, so you know you have to stay hydrated the night before, and then we have a very long day, so we're constantly refreshing. Lots of blush."

Three-year Ben-Gal Teresha has to refresh with powder throughout the game, but her makeup regimen works well. "I'm always surprised, but it never sweats off! I guess when you put that much on, it just doesn't come off," she says.

Not only does their makeup need occasional maintenance but their uniforms need checking as well!

1209KROMBHOLZ.gif Teresha calls herself the "queen of embarrassing moments." Her first year on the squad her excitement got the best of her. "I put on the uniform top, and I go out there, feeling comfortable and confident. We're into our first routine and I came up from a [dance move] and … my halter top has snapped off.… I was, like, 'Is this really happening?' "

All wardrobe malfunctions aside, Teresha says that she loves the uniform anyway. "I'm shorter, but it makes me look tall! It elongates my body. It fits to your hips, and it curves to your body," she says. Lindsay says she loves her uniform because it was custom-made for her. "It's like having a dress made for you. That's probably the coolest concept because the uniform is made just for me!" she says.

They're not always in the swanky striped skirts and midriff-baring crop tops you see out at the games. The Ben-Gals are sensible. It gets too cold in Cincinnati to wear the classic uniform year-round! The ladies put on a special fashion preview of all of their favorite looks, so click the play button below for your exclusive look.

To follow the lead of the Ben-Gal cheerleaders, check out Fierce Fans to support your hometown football team in fashion.


Photographer: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Model: Erin Johnson
Location: The McAlpin


Videographer and editor: Kirsten Schaffer

Location: Paul Brown Stadium

Kirsten Schaffer -

Kirsten Schaffer is an editorial intern for Cincy Chic. E-mail her at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or follow her on Twitter at More >>

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