Was maid of honor for Sharon Tate at her marriage to director Roman Polanski in London, England on January 20, 1968.
She and Ed Nelson were the only two actors who appeared on the first episode of Peyton Place (1964) in 1964 and the final episode in 1969. They were the only stars who received screen credit for every episode (although not necessarily appearing in every episode) during the series' entire five-year run.
Is an adopted child.
In 1965, was named "Hollywood's Deb Star of the Year" by the Association of Hollywood Make up Artists and Hairstylists.
In 1965, won the Photoplay Gold Medal Award for Best Newcomer.
She is an accomplished photographer.
Appeared in a number of "Playboy" pictorial spreads, her most revealing being the ones in 1967 and 1976.
In 1998 she came out of nowhere and appeared in the mini-movie Scandalous Me: The Jacqueline Susann Story (1998), the story of Jacqueline Susann, who wrote the book upon which Valley of the Dolls (1967) was based.
While interviewed by gossip columnist Ted Casablanca at a 1996 gala viewing of Valley of the Dolls (1967), she candidly reported, while working with some of her co-stars, that Susan Hayward was "spastic", Patty Duke was "energetic but neurotic" and Sharon Tate was "magic".
She reprised her Peyton Place (1964) character of "Betty Harrington" for a 1985 TV-reunion movie, Peyton Place: The Next Generation (1985).
Has a daughter, Christina (b. 1986) from her marriage in the late '70s. She was later divorced.
Patty Duke gave her the nick name "Barbara Starkins" during the filming of Valley of the Dolls (1967).
She was cast as "Anne Welles" in Valley of the Dolls (1967) after Candice Bergen dropped out two weeks before filming was to begin. She originally tested for the role of "Neely O'Hara".
In 1966 she co-hosted the Miss Teen International Pageant with her Peyton Place (1964) costar Ryan O'Neal.
Favorite perfume is 'Lheure Bleu' by Guerlain.
Was among the women chosen by famed photographer Patrick Lichfield to be included in his 1983 book, "The Most Beautiful Women".
Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#81). .
Was signed to star in the 1980 mini-series, Scruples (1980), but backed out before filming started.
Turned down the opportunity to reprise the role of Betty in the 1977 television film, Murder in Peyton Place (1977). She did, however, agree to play Betty again in 1985 when Peyton Place: The Next Generation (1985) was made.
Turned down leading roles in the movies Goodbye, Columbus (1969) and They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969). When asked why, Parkins replied, "I must have had my head in the sand".
She was considered for the title role in the James Bond film Octopussy (1983) that went to Maud Adams.