Sports Illustrated is the most successful sports magazine in the United States. It was one of the first magazines to be focused solely on sports. The magazine itself had spawned many spin-off series of the magazine and is developing into a multi-media franchise with a television show and a website. Once every year the publication breaks format to produce a Swimsuit Issue.
- Body Paint: A few of their swimsuit issues had this.
- Daytime Drama Queen: They once did an article on athletes coping with boredom while recovering from season-ending injuries, and at least one mentioned watching soap operas.
- Fanservice Cover: Their annual swimsuit issues.
- Fashion Model: Many of the ladies on the swimsuit issue are models.
- Fun with Acronyms: The infamous April Fools' Day article in 1985, purported to be about an improbable baseball pitcher named Sidd Finch. The first letter of each word in the article's intro spelled out "HAPPY APRIL FOOLS DAY".
- Going Fur a Swim: Kate Upton, for the 2013 swimsuit issue, wore ensembles that included a few faux furs, such as a white fur jacket, a Fur Bikini, and even a fur muff held right in front of her bare chest.
- Mamet Speak: Tiger Woods' proclivity for profanity after an awry golf shot led writer Joe Posnanski to write, "When he hits a shot that's only 90% perfect, Woods rants like he's in a David Mamet production."
- Minimalistic Cover Art: Their cover◊ featuring the Miracle on Ice celebration, which ran without any accompanying captions or headlines.
- Pop Culture Urban Legends: A related curse where getting on the Sports Illustrated cover suddenly dooms an athlete's good fortunes. While it's not consistent, it tends to happen to athletes during an incredible win streak at which point the magazine wants them for a cover story. Meaning the curse is less that they got on the cover and more to do with the fact that streaks end.
- Professional Wrestling: The April 24, 1985 issue had Hulk Hogan on the cover, making him the first wrestler to make the cover.
- Sistine Steal: For their 50th anniversary, they made a sports-related version of the entire Sistine Chapel ceiling. The Creation of Adam fresco had the image of God unchanged and the image of Adam replaced with that of Babe Ruth.