In 1981, MTV made history by airing the first ever music video on their network—ironically, it was “Video Killed the Radio Star” by The Buggles. Ever since, music videos have given musicians a whole other realm to express themselves and create hot and heavy visuals to pair with their equally steamy songs.
Here, we've put together our list of some of the sexiest music videos of all time, from iconic pop stars of the early 2000s to the reigning Queen Bey herself.
“I’m a Slave 4 U” by Britney Spears
It’s Britney—at her most scandalous to date, produced by Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo of The Neptunes. Released when she was 19, “I’m a Slave 4 U” marks Spears’ transition from good girl next door to total sex bomb status, complete with sweaty gyrating dancers and no shortage of midriff-bearing looks.
“Fade” by Kanye West
In this video, off the 2016 album Life of Pablo, Teyana Taylor is feeling the beat while working up quite the sweat in the gym. There’s also a steamy shower scene to top it all off. If this is Kanye West’s new new workout plan, we’re here for it. It’s hot.
“Partition” by Beyoncé
Undeniably one of the standout songs from Beyoncé’s self-titled album, the Partition video doesn’t disappoint either. It takes place at the Parisian cabaret Crazy Horse (where Bey and Jay got engaged!) and features our seductive songstress turned sexy showgirl.
“Wicked Game” by Chris Isaak
This video brought Chris Isaak into the spotlight and it has been topping sexiest video charts since its release in 1991. It’s starring model Helena Christensen, topless as she kisses Isaak and frolics in the ocean waves. These two prove sex on the beach never looked so good and it’s never too late for a summer romance.
“Drunk in Love” by Beyoncé
“Drunk in Love” is not your typical Beyoncé video, often characterized by larger than life dance productions. Instead we get Queen Bey stripped down (quite literally), raw and sensual, frolicking in the waves as if each and every body roll is just for Jay-Z and well… us.
“Hands to Myself” by Selena Gomez
Selena Gomez gets seductive, albeit criminally so, in her sultry video for “Hands to Myself.” In it, she stalks a former flame—rolling around in his bed in lingerie, taking a steamy bubble bath in his tub—all to end up in handcuffs. Not a bad end to the night.
“I Just Don’t Know What to do With Myself” by The White Stripes
Two words: Kate. Moss. Pole dancing. In lingerie. Okay, fine—six words. This moody black and white video was directed by Sofia Coppola, who told the New York Times about the video concept: “I said, ‘I don’t know—how about Kate Moss doing a pole dance?’ I said that because I would like to see it. That’s the way I work: I try to imagine what I would like to see.”
“Telephone” by Lady Gaga ft. Beyoncé
Lady Gaga gives us a whole nine-and-a-half minutes in the hottest women’s prison ever, including studded bikini clad inmates and tattoos galore. At times, the pop queen is concealed by only crime scene tape. Not to mention she gets picked up by Beyoncé in the “Pussy Wagon” from Kill Bill, before the two continue on their crime spree.
“Dirrty” by Christina Aguilera
Christina Aguilera, well Xtina, gives us the quintessential dirty, sexy music video we’ve always wanted. Perhaps inspired by Britney Spears’ turn to the dark side, Aguilera brings out her inner bad girl with highly suggestive dance moves in a grimy dance club. “Sweating ‘til my clothes come off” is right.
“Justify My Love” by Madonna
The slightly controversial Madonna video is a classic, in all its black and white glory. Originally banned on MTV, it features the star in a Marilyn-esque getup getting down and dirty in her lingerie, surrounded by religious iconography. Sacrilege!
"Anytime, Anyplace" by Janet Jackson
Jackson's 1994 slow jam was seductive enough already as a standalone track, with its smooth rhythm and Janet's whispery vocals. But with the video, it only gets even hotter, featuring a next-door neighbor affair that involves couch hookups, seductive strawberry-eating, and vinyl slow dances.
"S&M" by Rihanna
The visuals for this Loud-era Rihanna single are equal parts crazy, fun, and sexy, just like the singer herself. But the video isn't only about how "chains and whips excite me," there's an underlying message as RiRi ties up and teases members of the press.
"Anaconda" by Nicki Minaj
Nicki gets her twerk on, from the jungle to the gym, in the famous video for her hit 2014 single. She's as fierce as ever in the clip—so much so that she leaves Drake speechless with a lap dance.
"Booty" by Jennifer Lopez feat. Iggy Azalea
J.Lo and Iggy slip into leotards and get oiled up for a video so hot, it even comes with a warning. What else would you expect for a song titled "Booty?"
“Ride” by Ciara feat. Ludacris
In the mid 2000s, Ciara was queen of MTV’s early morning TRL video rotation. Her mind-boggling washboard abs and impeccable choreo made her an omnipresent visual sensation, with “Ride” being just one of a handful of sex-soaked hits.
“Lady Marmalade” by Christina Aguilera, Lil Kim, Mya, and Pink
The sheer power alone of this quartet of pop culture’s leading women makes the “Lady Marmalade” video sexy. But of course, the girls added something extra to the visuals. Wearing campy burlesque lingerie, they alternate from verse to verse with Missy Elliott as emcee, making for an absolute dream of a night out.
“Untitled” by D’Angelo
“Untitled” was the definition of a cultural reset, and a fascinating study on the larger topic of male objectification. For nearly five minutes, an incredibly close camera films a naked D’Angelo from all angles, showing absolutely everything from the waist up. The video, which now has about 19 million views on YouTube, became a fast phenomenon as fans obsessed over someone who could both look and sing like that at the same time.
“Dip It Low” by Christina Milian
Leaning into the male gaze that permeated all aspects of early 2000s music video imagery, Christina Milian performs for a group of spectators in small black leather outfits, hitting complex choreography before dipping herself into a pool of slick black oil.
"Bartier Cardi" by Cardi B
Dripped in suction-cupping latex lingerie and costume jewelry, Cardi brings the retro glamour for "Bartier Cardi," the raunchy ode to her husband, rapper Offset. With an equally opulent girl gang behind her, Cardi runs some sort of underground money laundering scam that lands 21 Savage duct-taped to a chair. Foggy storyline aside, Cardi's power and aesthetic have never been more present.
"Tommy" by Tommy Genesis
"Tommy" without a video is already adulterated, smooth, and unapologetic eroticism. As the track opens, a propulsive trap beat swells beneath the rapper as she taunts matter-of-factly: "She drive a Ford, Tommy/She can’t afford Tommy." The video only ups the hypersexualized anti, as images of Tommy in bed – fully clothed in schoolgirl garb – flash between shots of her teasing from a bathtub and from inside a cage. It's fantasy done right as Tommy takes explicit ownership of her own sexuality.
"Motivation" by Normani
Normani's "Motivation" music video was truly a turning point for the singer’s trajectory. It was a moment that not only fed the internet's collective thirst for early 2K nostalgia, but also solidified her place as the certified pop star of the new era. Adorned in an airbrushed mini skirt and tank top set, she breezes through four minutes of unparalleled choreo, churning out move after move, as marching band horns underline her every lyric.
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