Why do so many people think that nudity couldn’t be “normal”?

Consider the (quite obviously staged) photo here. There are six people clothed “normally” – and one naked person, who is much like the others except for her nudity. Those who are clothed are looking down on the naked person with obvious displeasure and disapproval. Not only that, but those who aren’t naked are clothed almost exactly alike – even down to their bare feet.

What’s the reason for the very negative judgmental attitude of the majority? Is it because of the nonconformist’s nudity? Or is it actually because of how a nonconformist is regarded by the (very conformist) majority? I’d argue that the real reason is precisely the nonconformity with the majority, rather than the nudity, which is merely the particular way that the nonconformist differs from the others.
Continue reading “Why do so many people think that nudity couldn’t be “normal”?”

What does “normalizing nudity” mean?

Don’t you wish being more comfortable by not wearing any needless clothes at home or in some idyllic place outdoors (when it’s warm enough) could be much less controversial? In short, wouldn’t you be glad if nudity were more accepted as “normal”?

“Normalizing nudity” is an idea that’s increasingly being discussed. The phrase (or slight variants) has been around awhile – for instance here, here, and here. It’s been mentioned more recently here and here.

Continue reading “What does “normalizing nudity” mean?”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 2/29/20

  1. The Joys of Living Naked
    Dan, of The Meandering Naturist, found the recent New York Times article – which I discussed here – to be problematical in several ways, even though it presented a generally postive picture of naturism. Like Dan, I though the article was somewhat shallow and superficial. While having positive articles about naturism in prestigious mainstream media is a good thing, it’s obvious that non-naturist reporters generally don’t quite really grok what naturism is about. Naturism isn’t only about senior citizens who go about their daily lives naked in resorts that cater to them. That doesn’t quite get to why it is that people want to do such a strange thing.

    Dan wonders “whether a media splash like this actually helps or hurts the naturist cause.” He wishes (as I do) that the article had broadened the topic to explain the Joys of Living Naked. He notes that it wasn’t necessary to go to Florida to learn about the naturist lifestyle, because there are naturists right in New York City “who embrace the clothing-optional lifestyle, but not just on vacation or in retirement, but on a typical Sunday morning when the apartment is warm enough to be naked at home, even in December, and clothing is simply an option that isn’t necessary.” It’s just not necessary to go to a Florida resort to enjoy living naked, because nudity is enjoyable even in one’s own home.

    We can all, like Dan, welcome “the seemingly growing trend amidst the general public as related to the tolerance of social nudity” – as evidenced by the Times article. It’s encouraging that there’s even “a photo of a fully nude woman – from the backside – working in the kitchen” – which suggests “we’ve all finally agreed that the nation’s children will not be harmed by the incidental sighting of unadorned buttocks.” Well, maybe readers of the Times, at least, are enlightened enough to get that.

    Dan argues that naturists themselves, and the resorts they frequent, aren’t helping naturism by being “at least inadvertently, self-deprecating if not outright ridiculing themselves,” because they “simply can’t seem to resist nomenclature, sign-posts, and newsletter headlines that actually perpetuate the idea that ‘You naked people are all a little crazy’.” Sure, being lighthearted about one’s enthusiasms, instead of overly earnest about them, is OK – but going too far with that can backfire and give the wrong impression. Naturism isn’t a weird eccentricity or crotchet, but it’s not a solemn religion either. There are aficionados of many things – sports, physical fitness, computer games, etc. – who may veer too far in either direction, and naturists can do the same. But avoiding either extreme is probably the best way to go. Living naked is an enjoyable lifestyle – no more, perhaps, but no less.

    So much for the philosophy of naturism. Dan concludes with several very good points about how best to start living naked. Here’s the list (but go read the article for the details):

    • Talk to your neighbors
    • Be an advocate
    • Understand your windows
    • Landscaping and sight-lines
    • The wood burning stove
    • Pareo or sauna towel
    • Display nude artwork
    • Naked gourmet dining
    • And what about the WNBR?


    I’ll be posting another article soon with some similar suggestions for enjoying a naked lifestyle – and at the same time normalizing nudity.

  2. Constructive Ways to Celebrate and Promote Nudism


    Here’s another voice supporting the idea of normalizing nudity: “Lately, we have been happy to see the hashtags #normalizenudism and #normalizenaturism going around social media.” Probably almost everyone who’s read this far will agree with the idea. But it will take more than that to make it actually happen. So this article adds six more suggestions about how to do that.

    • Lobby your local government for nude beaches & other naked places
      While the goal is certainly important, this may put the cart before the horse. To be successful in the effort, there needs to be plenty of support in your community for designating nude beaches and naked places. And that probably means first convincing many in the community that nudity should be considered normal. How? Other suggestions here would be good places to start.

    • Come out to your family and friends
      Absolutely. These are the first people who need to be persuaded that nudity is good. Watch here for much more about that.

    • Take a stand against anti-nudity policies
      This is another cart before the horse. Official policies won’t change unless there’s community support for that. However, individual naturists should be supported publicly if they’re unfairly treated because of, for example, unreasonable complaints from neighbors.

    • Support nudist networks and businesses
      If you’re fortunate enough to have naturist-friendly businesses in your area, you should certainly support them. If “networks” refers to regional or national organizations, they should be supported too – if they can, in return, support local naturists. Being active in online naturist groups will help individual naturists support each other and naturism in general.

    • Stop shaming others
      Be careful how you deal with naturists who may have personal values different from yours. Shaming should be reserved only for people who link non-naturist values to naturism or behave unlawfully in ways inconsistent with naturism.

    • Share your first-time stories
      Assuming you are “out” as a naturist, why stop with only the first-time stories? Don’t hesitate to let others know of all the enjoyable naturist things you do. Yes, most people feel a little awkward the first time they’re naked “in public”, so it’s good to let anyone who might be interested in naturism know that’s a very temporary problem. But also tell about how much can be enjoyed after becoming comfortable with nudity.

  3. British Naturism books out Hollywood Bowl in Ashford for naked session


    The news is that “The British Naturism (BN) has organised a social event in Ashford for its naked members.” British naturists are very fortunate to have a national organization that actually arranges for many local naturist events around the country. Naturists in the U. S. and other countries should be so lucky.

    Wait, what? Bowling??? Isn’t that something that went out of fashion, oh, 20 or 30 years ago? Well, yes, perhaps to some extent. But people – including naturists – still do it. Just stop to think about it for a moment. Bowling, despite its stodgy image, is an almost ideal activity for naturists. Bowling alleys (those still in business) are private (when reserved for naturists) and (usually) have comfortable temperatures regardless of the weather outdoors. The activity is generally very social, and individuals can concentrate on their own performance, instead of trying to defeat an opponent or win a competition (as in tennis and many other sports). Best of all, success in bowling depends more on skill than on strength, speed, or endurance – so people without exceptional physical gifts can do well. If naturists live somewhere there’s an alley nearby and they can get a sufficiently large group to rent the facility for a few hours, a bowling party could be a fun naturist activity at any time of the year.

    More details: here

  4. Naked bathers want to ‘piggyback’ on Wild Atlantic Way’s success


    Nudity on certain public beaches in Ireland has actually been legal only since 2017. Yet many beaches in Cork County have been used discreetly by naturist for years. According to a spokesperson for the Irish Naturist Association, “West Cork boasts several beaches that have been attracting naturists for decades.” As I noted here, Ireland is rapidly becoming a good place for naturism.

    The “Wild Atlantic Way” (WAW) “is a tourism trail on the west coast, and on parts of the north and south coasts, of Ireland.” The spokesperson is calling for “providing signage and officially recognising many of the secluded ‘unofficial’ nudist beaches dotted along the region’s coast” – along the WAW route. The hope is that, given recognition, naturist usage of the beaches will become “very normal very quickly”, and consequently, naturists “will spend time and money in these areas.” Arguments like this should be effective in promoting naturist destinations elsewhere. This has definitely happened with Blind Creek Beach in St. Lucie County, Florida.

  5. I Went to a Nude Beach With a Friend, and We Loved It


    This is a pretty good first-time story. James, whose story this is, certainly had the right attitude: “Beach days are hard to beat. You are lying in the warm sunshine, have sand between your toes, and can hear the sound of waves crashing. What could be better, right? Maybe . . . going naked?” He invited his friend, Nicole, to go with him to check out Black’s Beach while he was visiting San Diego. Neither of them had been to a nude beach before, but they “were excited to see what it was all about.” Not surprisingly, for first-timers, James says that once on the beach, “it was very awkward for the first 20 minutes or so.” But after that, he dropped his “shorts, and ran straight into the ocean. Nicole quickly followed, and within minutes, it just wasn’t weird anymore.” Most readers who’ve tried it know that’s usually how it goes – if they get naked at all. Unfortunately, most non-naturists find this truth hard to believe.

  6. Albemarle Co. yoga studio to host another nude class


    Charlottesville, a smallish city located in Albemarle County, Virginia is a college town, home of the University of Virginia, and the county population is about 150,000, so it’s not especially surprising that there are more than a dozen yoga studios in the area. However, only one of them, apparently, offers nude yoga sessions – the Elements Yoga Studio. Unfortunately, the sessions aren’t coed. There was a session for women in February, which “turned into a sold out event earlier in the month,” according to the article. A session for men was held on February 29, according to the studio’s calendar, and another one for women is scheduled for March 13.

    “The body-positive yoga allowed women to step into a safe, judgement-free [sic] space where they were free to take off as much clothing as they felt comfortable with,” the article says. So the class is actually just clothing-optional. There’s no information on how many opted to be naked. It’s a good thing, at least, that the option is available – even only once a month. Perhaps interest in nude activities will grow as more people have the opportunity to experience them.

    More: here

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 2/10/20

  1. Naturists. Are we all protesters?
    Nick and Hannah make so many excellent points in this post on their relatively new blog (already referenced here) I wish I could quote most of it. Many, perhaps most, naturists don’t think of themselves as protesters hopeful of spreading a message and changing society. They simply enjoy being naked, for a variety of good reasons. One thing that most naturists don’t do is publicly protest naked to promote naturism itself. If they do protest fully or partly naked, it’s for some other worthy cause, such as in favor of bicycle safety and against the use of fossil fuels, as in World Naked Bike Rides. Or, as mentioned in this article, Dr. Victoria Bateman‘s protest against Brexit.


    Nudity has been used in a variety of other protests over the years, e. g. the Doukhobors, PETA, and Femen. I recently reported on other protests here. It’s no mystery why nudity is used in such protests: it definitely gets attention.

    There have, actually, also been a few protests for the right to be publicly naked, particularly in San Francisco when a stricter law against public nudity was passed a few years ago. (But naked protests and certain other events with public nudity are still allowed there if permits are obtained.) Nevertheless, this is pretty rare. In fact, this kind of protest could be counter-productive in most cases, because a right to even limited public nudity isn’t considered a compelling issue for most people – unlike, say, animal rights or climate change. Yet Nick and Hannah correctly observe “There is no escaping, however, that for many naturists, whether they realise it or not, there is an element of protest to their desire to be naked in a social setting.”

    A general right to public nudity is too much to expect at this time. But what about a right to private nudity? Apparently even that is too much to hope for in backward places like Utah, as discussed here. While more enlightened places don’t put legal restrictions on nonsexual nudity in private spaces, such restrictions are still prevalent, simply because of social attitudes that nudity in most cases may be “offensive”, probably “immoral”, and certainly not “normal”. As the article points out, “We are brought up in a world where social nudity is anything but normal. Our bodies are emphatically not our own, they belong to ‘moral’ society. It is ‘moral’ society which dictates what we should wear to which occasions.”

    Of course, the idea that simple nudity in itself is “immoral” is ridiculous – except in a very twisted notion of “morality”. The source of this aberrant notion is not hard to understand: it is the imperative for social control. Quite simply, as the article points out, “Step over the line and the disapproval will try to bring you to heel. ‘Moral’ society fears those it cannot control.” It would be one thing if society had a rational view of the morality of social nudity. But a rational view doesn’t exist now – not of nudity, nor of many other things as well. Unfortunately, society isn’t great at controlling serious crime, gun violence, racial prejudice, etc. But controlling nudity is easier, so it gets controlled instead.

    In their article, Nick and Hannah observe that simply by doing what isn’t “normal” and enjoying nudity when and where we can “we are protesting, albeit to varying degrees and sometimes more subconsciously than consciously.” Furthermore: “You may not previously have considered yourself a protester but you should not be embarrassed by the protest element of naturism, rather you should celebrate it.”

    It may not be clear to most naturists what their nudity is protesting. However, aren’t we “quietly protesting against being unreasonably controlled? Protesting in favour of issues such as body positivity and confidence, tolerance, inclusiveness and respect? Protesting about the sexualisation of the naked body?” They conclude “Our ultimate goal should be to take the protest out of naturism and to make social nudity entirely normal and unremarkable.” In other words: normalize nudity.

  2. Normalising Nudism


    It’s not necessary to say much about this – the idea speaks for itself. “#NormalisingNaturism” is now a Twitter hashtag. I prefer to express the idea as “normalize nudity”, because many people aren’t interested in being labeled, yet they approve of nonsexual social nudity and probably enjoy it when they can. The article suggests that it’s not necessary to surprise your friends by going naked with them without any warning. (Exception: at your own home, if you have a swimming pool or a spa, you might suggest a skinny-dip.) But that shouldn’t stop you from mentioning to open-minded friends that you enjoy nonsexual nudity and explaining why. Perhaps some will even invite you to “get comfortable”. Wearing nothing needs to become just another acceptable choice of attire when practical.

    By the way, notice how often the idea of normalizing nudity comes up in many of the articles here. Naturists need to emphasize to anyone who’ll listen that nonsexual social nudity really needs to be considered normal, not some crazy, deviant eccentricity.

  3. Nothing wrong – and lots right – with a bit of public nudity


    The picture is of Munich’s Englischer Garten, where nudity has been normal and accepted in this part for at least 50 years. (This part happens to be only about 100 meters fron the back of a major art museum, in the center of the city.) But the story is from New Zealand. In fact, it appeared in the New Zealand Herald, which has the largest circulation of all newspapers in the country.

    The writer, Vera Alves, a “Social Media and Trending Reporter” is responding to a couple of incidents – a nursing mother was asked to cover up while breastfeeding, and a family that was “shocked” to see naked bathers at a clothing-optional beach. Vera doesn’t mince words. “For such a progressive country – first to split the atom and all that – we’ve still got some pretty archaic views on things,” she says.

    This really is an amazing article that naturists should share with as many people as possible. Vera goes on to make many very incisive points on public nudity, which I’ll quote or paraphrase. I don’t know whether she’s a confirmed naturist, but I don’t know how anyone could make all these points much better.

    • The first point is in the headline: There really is nothing wrong with public nudity (assuming it’s in appropriate places and respectful of others).
    • Too many people are “hung up on the unclothed human body.”
    • There shouldn’t be any serious trauma from “seeing a stranger’s intimate body parts.”
    • People who are bothered or offended by nudity should start asking themselves why.
    • Given how many real problems there are to worry about, seeing “nipples and penises should be the least of” one’s worries now.
    • “Children who are soon going to be adults” will “grow up with some really messed up views of what bodies look like, if we keep restricting them to the bodies they see on porn sites or in fashion magazines.”
    • “This repressed and archaic view of the human body as something to be hidden and ashamed of is nothing if not a form of oppression – and there are far too many people going along with it without questioning it.”
    • People can change their negative way of thinking about nudity to understand it the way naturists do, “and absolutely nothing bad at all will happen.”
    • Children whose parents are more open-minded about nudity “will not grow up to be depraved – if anything, they might just grow up more confident and empowered.”
    • The real problem “is not nudity. The problem is the over-sexualisation of the human body, which leads to all kinds of issues.”
    • “‘Normalising’ the regular human body can be a really good thing. If our children are to grow up with healthy views of what a normal human body is, we need to shed these archaic taboos.”
    • If your child has questions about seeing someone naked, you have “a golden opportunity to talk to them about things like boundaries, consent and respect for others.”
    • The human body is not immoral – stop making it so.
    • “The bottom line is: if you’re getting your knickers in a twist, maybe the knickers are the problem.”


    Wow. Hits it out of the park with three on the bases.

  4. Is Naturism the solution to low body confidence?


    It’s a rhetorical question to which naturists know the answer very well. A writer for a non-naturist site demonstrates how obvious the answer is. Here’s the nut graf:
    In a world dominated by social media, many of us are used to seeing men and women with perfect bodies on our screens every day of every week, and it’s no secret that this can have a negative effect on our own body image. However, people all around the world are using Naturism as their way to feel more comfortable in their own skin.

    Mark Walsh, a spokesperson for British Naturism, is quoted pointing out that naturism often “starts at home, just by shedding your clothes, existing and just being comfortable in your own skin. As soon as you’re comfortable in your own skin, it really doesn’t matter where you’re comfortable in your own skin.” Provided that others you live with aren’t bothered by your nudity, the more time you spend naked, the more it will seem normal to you. That’s why your home is usually the best place to start experimenting with nudity – the people you live with are probably more likely to accept your nudity than random people you know, let alone (non-naturist) strangers. (However, if people you live with aren’t comfortable with nudity, you’ll need a Plan B.)

    Mark explains that the basic reason naturism is the solution to low body confidence is because “it reinforces that there is no normal standard – we are all made different, and that’s who you are.” That assumes you’re ready to be naked not just in your own home, but also with a variety of others you’ll see in naturist activities and events. Stephanie Silom, the writer of the article, summarizes that “our body confidence and the extent to which we base our self-worth on our bodies improves massively once we learn that almost no-one has a ‘perfect’ body.”

  5. 7 Clothing-optional places to go naked in Colorado
    Articles like this, which are targeted to a mainstream audience, indicate that public nudity is – however slowly – gradually becoming normalized even in the U. S. The fact that an article like this was published shows recognition that people exist who know little or nothing about naturism but are interested in places they can safely get naked outdoors. All locations described here are clothing-optional, at least most of the time. All but one of them have hot springs to soak in, and may be either rustic or somewhat developed. The exception, Mountain Air Ranch, is a full-featured naturist resort, the only one in Colorado. The article is also here

  6. Corsica – a rough hewn, sparkling gem


    Looking a little farther afield – at least for folks in North America – there’s Corsica, a French island in the Mediterranean, known as Corse to the French, but which is nearer to Italy than France. Here’s a report from Olly Watts, a British Naturism member, on his stay on Corsica with a companion. Corsica is a smallish island of 8722 km2 (3368 mi2), about ⅔ of which is mountainous. Because of the size, distances between interesting spots are measured in just a few tens of kilometers at most. Olly spent the first part of his fortnight vacation in the vicinity of Porto Vecchio, near the southeast tip of the island. The area offers both beach and mountain places to be naked. Olly’s account makes the places he visited sound like a naturist paradise, where full-time nudity was often possible. The latter part of the trip was mostly on the eastern side of the island. That included a stay at Riva Bella, a four-star naturist campsite, where the stretch of sand “seemed to curve forever, north from the nature reserve.” Because Corsica is all part of France, there’s the additional attraction of French food and wine – with Italian influence as well.

    The Meandering Naturist blog has much more information on Corsica.

  7. Camping in heaven


    Looking further afield still, how about Thailand? Did you know that Thailand is about the only Asian country with attractive places for naturists? Well it is. There’s even a Thailand Naturist Association. This is article is about a visit to the Barefeet Heaven Naturist Resort.

    Although Barefeet is a developed naturist resort, Chew, the author of the article, chose to stay in a tent she’d brought. So that allowed for a real camping experience, but also access to resort facilities. The location is ideal for camping, since it’s located in the Hat Chao Mai Marine National Park. On one side of Chew’s campsite “was a river with spectacular rock formations. The other was [a] stunning limestone cliff that was so close to me. In fact, the whole surrounding was a wide and open fabulous view with no block in any corners.” There’s an “unofficial” nude beach just a short walk away. In summary, “Barefeet is a wonderful place not only for naturists but also nature lovers, birding activity and meditation retreat for its nature preservation and tranquility as well as its laid-back and peaceful atmosphere in the surrounding areas.”

    The Naturist Wanderings and Naturism Girl blogs have more information on Thai naturism. Here’s what Naturism Girl has to say about Barefeet. And here’s the Naked Wanderings review of it.

Notable articles from the past #1 – Ask for Permission to Get Naked While at Friends’

Ask for Permission to Get Naked While at Friends’

The article – from the Nude and Happy blog in November, 2017 – makes this suggestion as a way to bring up the subject of naturism in conversation with friends – and reveal your interest in it.

Marc wrote:
If your friends are not naturists, your option to go naked is low. But, it’s not zero, it’s actually never zero, until you ask. Because this is ultimately what it is all about: asking for permission to get naked! This may sound strange or awkward at first, but it will become a second nature as soon as you realize it’s totally appropriate, natural and normal!

I’d generally agree this is definitely something to consider, but it requires some caution. It would probably work best in a situation where nudity is a natural thing to enjoy, as with friends around a private swimming pool, or in an isolated location with only friends nearby, such as picnicking, hiking, swimming in a river or lake, or while camping. If friends are visiting at your own home, you might leave things like naturist books or periodicals around – which could tempt others to ask you about them.

The idea may work well with some of your friends, but it’s probably best not to strip off without any warning. Instead, wait until you’ve first let the friends know that you’re curious about naturism or, perhaps, are already a naturist. If others are hostile or dismissive of the idea, you can just say that you understand, although you don’t agree with their attitude. But this could be a chance to explain why naturism appeals to you. Then, at a later time, raise the idea again.

However, if others seem to be open-minded and at least curious themselves to know more about naturism, they may simply invite you to feel free to be naked if you’ve already revealed you enjoy social nudity. Or, in case you have little experience with social nudity, they may encourage you to try it right then and there.

Ideally, if you’re encouraged to get naked, these friends will probably not be surprised should you choose to be naked in similar future circumstances – without even asking. And maybe one or more of your friends will try it too. Every time you do this you’ll be helping to normalize nudity.

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 12/21/19

  • I signed up for nude modelling to challenge myself
    Modeling naked for an art drawing or painting class is scary – even if you’re used to going naked at home sometimes or even visiting a nude beach occasionally. It’s even scarier if you have no significant experience being naked in front of strangers who will be staring intently at your naked body for an hour or two. Why did Sonya do it? A friend who had done nude modeling for years had “always spoken about how much fun she had found it.” Sonya writes that she had “spent so long working to the point of getting to be ok with my body, instead of being at war with it” – and she now needed to challenge herself on her progress.

    She writes about her very first experience modeling naked, her anxiety about it initially, and her feelings in the first few minutes. “Disrobing was difficult. All those eyes, staring at me.” But it turned out very well. “Seeing myself through other people’s eyes, laid bare on the paper was amazing for my body confidence…. The next time I am asked to life model, I’ll respond with an enthusiastic “Yes!”.” In light of the next article to be discussed, what this shows is that the discomfort from people staring at one’s naked body is a challenge – but it can be conquered by developing sufficient self-confidence. Most naturists aren’t exhibitionists or ecdysiasts, and they don’t expect to get sexual gratification from being seen naked by others. But neither do they need to be scared or concerned about being seen naked. The pleasure of nudity is just a result of accepting one’s body and not being encumbered by clothing.

  • “Staring is a big no-no”: All the questions you have about nudism, answered


    This article from an Australian source relays advice from the founder of Get Naked Australia. Most of it is aimed at people who know little about naturism or nudism, but are curious about it (in a positive or negative way). The article’s title singles out one specific issue – the concerns people have about being stared at while partially or fully naked.

    This is a more complicated issue than is generally acknowledged. On one hand, people having little or no experience with social nudity believe that most of its devotees have great self-confidence and no embarrassment about being naked. That’s not true, although it should be. On the other hand, people who do have some experience with social nudity often think that others who stare at their bodies are simply being gauche and uncouth. That fails to understand the previous point.

    It’s usually very good advice not to stare – whether intentionally or not – at the bodies of anyone who’s fully or partly naked. While the naked person might be fairly comfortable with nudity, if they’re relatively new to social nudity they may feel mildly to severely uncomfortable about being stared at. Of course, the same is true of anyone who’s stared at because of almost anything “unusual” in their physical appearance, manner of dress, awkward behavior due to disabilities, etc.

    However, people who know little or nothing about social nudity probably assume that anyone who’s fully or partly naked has overcome any sense of shame associated with nudity and therefore must be insensitive to and unperturbed by the stares of others. That’s not a good assumption.

    There are now a variety of “public” places where nudity is accepted and perhaps even common – such as clothing-optional beaches and resorts, fairly isolated places outdoors, or legally approved public demonstrations such as World Naked Bike Rides. Anyone who chooses full or partial nudity in such places – either for a particular occasion or as part of a consistent lifestyle – has probably decided that nudity is at least harmless or actually quite a good thing. Such people have to some degree or other overcome unhealthy body shame and society’s irrational aversion to nudity.
    There’s a mismatch of assumptions on both sides of this issue. People who don’t know much about social nudity may assume, incorrectly, that most who participate in it are quite self-confident about their nudity and have no feelings about shame or embarrassment related to it, and no concerns about how others will react to it. However, someone who’s nude in “public” may be just experimenting with it. They may have gathered the courage to try it, but are still quite sensitive to negative reactions from others.

    On the other side, people who stare at others who’re partially or fully naked may be doubtful about the legality of the nudity and probably still think that open nudity is improper and even “immoral”. So if they stare at others who’re not “properly” clothed it’s not necessarily right to assume that the staring is consciously disrespectful or simply uncouth. It’s more charitable to assume starers still suffer from irrational body shame and are simply behaving in accord with their social conditioning.

    Just as with people who become comfortable as nude models, most people who have enough time and experience with social nudity are able to overcome uneasiness when less enlightened others stare at them. Once one becomes convinced there’s nothing “wrong” about choosing not to cover certain parts of their body it’s easy to enjoy nudity and feel no shame about it. By realizing that staring results from the typical unfamiliarity or disapproval regarding nudity present in most cultures, it’s easier to understand and ignore impolite staring. Unfortunately, it takes a little time for people who are relatively new to being naked in a clothing-optional situation to become self-confident about their nudity. Since it’s usually difficult to know whether staring will cause discomfort to someone, the best general policy is not to stare.

  • Third Time’s the Charm?
    If you think it’s scary to be stared at naked in a life drawing class of maybe 10 or 20 people, what would you think about being naked in New York’s Times Square in broad daylight – open to the stares of many hundreds of complete strangers? It’s actually possible to do that legally, with the proper permits. And it can be done without embarrassment, even if you’re not an exhibitionist (which, hopefully, you aren’t). The naturist activist who goes by the name Ton Dou has been organizing that very thing, in the name of “Bare Body Freedom”. Last year he performed (naked) an “Ultimate Freedom Concert” in the Square, accompanied by two dozen naked men, one naked woman. (Some others were partially naked.) This year he repeated the performance, but this time – as the blog of The Outdoor Co-ed Topless Pulp Fiction Appreciation Society notes – with about one dozen naked men and four or five women. So the better gender balance is, at least, a “step in the right direction”. Naturists can hope that the third time, next year, could be better still.

    It’s worth noting that in 2016 the OCTPFAS put on performances of Shakespeare’s The Tempest in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park with the all-female cast mostly naked. There have, of course, been a number of amateur and professional theatrical productions in recent decades with significant amounts of full nudity – but hardly ever so openly in a public park. Just imagine how comfortable the casts of such productions needed to become with stares from the audience. And incidentally, the women of the OCTPFAS regularly sunbathe topfree during the summer – completely legally – in New York City parks. Stares? Who cares?

  • Care home welcomes naked male model after residents request a nude drawing class
    While on the subject of nude life modeling, it’s worth mentioning that people who take art classes offering this aren’t in it for sexual thrills either. Most people will never be acclaimed artists, but artistic skill in depicting the naked human body is something that most people can develop with sufficient effort and practice. Accomplishments in such endeavors are as satisfying as achievement in any other type of artistic pursuit – from making music to making furniture. This type of satisfaction is available to people of almost any age. And the nude models who enable learning how to reproduce the human form on canvas or in clay need not be embarrassed by their role, regardless of who the students are.
    More: Old people’s home invites nude model for life drawing class

  • Art Residency: International artists live in the nude for ten days


    This type of Art Residency is a relatively brief organized program for people who are serious about developing their artistic skills. The immersive experience helps them focus on and improve different aspects of their craft. In this case, the artists themselves work as nude models. This helps artists in various ways. Probably the most important way is understanding the diverse meanings of full exposure of one’s naked body to the gaze of others. Nudity, of course, has a sexual meaning, but it’s only one among many. There’s the pleasure, which naturists know quite well, of directly experiencing the natural world instead of the artificial world of clothing. There’s the self-confidence manifest in lack of concern about others’ perception of one’s naked body. There’s the satisfaction of demonstrating the naked body’s aesthetic beauty. The better that artists appreciate these different meanings of nudity, the better they can express them in their art.

  • Do’s and Don’ts: Making Nudist Friends


    In a previous collection of recent articles we considered How to Find Other Nudists. Among the approaches mentioned was visiting nude or clothing-optional beaches. It was noted that this can be tricky, since visitors to such beaches have a wide range of experience with social nudity, and differing amounts of interest in acquiring new friends while enjoying the beach. The article here offers a number of good suggestions on how to navigate around these complicating factors. Since it was published by the official organization of Haulover Beach (Florida) users, the suggestions should be very pertinent and reliable.

  • A Naturist Girl
    Here’s a good statement on naturism by Aleah, who was raised in a naturist family – and has not seriously wavered from the enjoyment of nudity, in spite of the various trials and tribulations that afflict most people’s lives from time to time. It’s one of the first posts on a new blog: Our Natural Blog. The blog is actually the work of Aleah and her husband Sam. Both Aleah and Sam introduce themselves in earlier articles on their blog. There’s also a very good background article on Aleah and Sam on the Naked Wanderings blog.

    One of the best comments in the article explains how the fear and shame usually associated with nudity is a noxious, harmful fact about our culture (as well as most others):
    We are taught to grow up,,, to wear shoes and stop climbing trees. We are taught the concept of modesty and shame. Taught what the “ideal perfect body” is supposed to look like.

    Naturist blogs from partnered couples are a relatively new thing. It will be great for naturism if the numbers keep growing, since such blogs should be especially encouraging for women to discover that naturism need not be primarily a male thing. Other good examples of this trend are Twonaturists Blog by Hannah and Nick, and Our Naked Story, by Blake and Elle.

  • Three-course dinner where ‘clothes are optional’ is coming to Cambridgeshire this chilly winter season
    The good news for people in the Cambridge area is that the event is not until January 25, so there’s still plenty of time to sign up. Naked dining events are still uncommon in the UK – but less uncommon than in most other countries where many naturists live. Events like this don’t usually just happen spontaneously. In this case, the event has been organized by the Eastern Region of British Naturism. (The folks who also organize other good things like skinny-dipping events and festivals for young naturists.) Sadly for naturists in the U. S., we do not have national (or regional) organizations that facilitate such things. One does have to wonder, though, why whoever wrote the article described the event as “risky”. Evidently a writer for the local news outlet – who isn’t a naturist.
    More: here

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 11/29/19

  • How to Find Other Nudists
    All of the suggestions in this article can work. But there’s one that stands out from all the others: visit nudist parks and resorts that are relatively convenient to you. If you’re already reasonably comfortable being naked around others, and you’re at least a somewhat sociable sort of person, you’ll be able to meet others who have many more naturist friends already. The first one or two folks you meet may not be ideal friend material, if only because they don’t live near you. However, if you hit it off well with those you meet, make it a point to ask whether they could recommend naturists friends of theirs who you might get along well with. It’s hard to exaggerate the value of personal recommendations. If you are recommended to other naturists as a person they might like, you’ll probably stand a very good chance of acquiring new naturist friends. Even if the club or resort you visit isn’t especially close to where you live, the people you meet there may be able to recommend friends of theirs who do live closer to you.

    It’s true that visiting a landed club or resort requires a little expense, and may be inconvenient or not a good option in colder times of the year. But the other suggestions also have drawbacks. You can, of course, have naturist conversations with people you “meet” online in discussion forums or networking sites. But the problem is that without actually meeting any of these in person, it will be more difficult for these online acquaintances to decide who among their friends are most likely to welcome you as a friend as well. Visting naturist beaches is also not a good option during colder times. Besides that, the beaches aren’t always good places to do this kind of friend-finding anyhow. That’s because many people at beaches are there only for the beach experience, and aren’t necessarily interested in socializing with strangers. Also, they may have little experience with social nudity outside of the beach environment and have few actual naturist friends. Although there may be others at the beach who are open to making new acquaintances, it’s hard to identify them among the larger crowd.

    One suggestion that the article failed to include is Meetup.com. This option allows for meeting other naturists in person, perhaps much closer to where one lives, and without the expense of landed club fees. The sole purpose of Meetup.com is for people within a particular geographic area who share almost any kind of interest (including naturism) to get together at certain times to become acquainted and talk about their shared interests, or even engage in activities related to the interest – hiking or beach-going, for example. There are Meetup groups almost everywhere in the world. Group meetings could be almost anyplace – restaurants or other public gathering places, private homes, or outdoor areas. For naturists, nudity may or may not be possible, depending on the location, yet the opportunity for finding new friends is definitely there as one of the main purposes. Established non-landed naturist clubs may also use Meetup to arrange meetings.

  • The ‘generational clash’ between young and old nudists
    It’s springtime in Australia, so naturism is, unsurprisingly, getting much more attention in Australian media, just as media in the northern hemisphere have gone mostly silent on the subject. This account focuses on the tension between different generations on their approach to naturism. “New” generations tend to be recognized starting roughly every 20 years. As young folks become adults they naturally identify more with each other than with their elders – but only until they become the “elders” themselves.

    This understandably leads to tensions between generations in naturism, as in many other aspects of society. It’s manifest in the sorts of sports and activities people enjoy, the music they prefer, and even the kinds of food they like. These intergenerational differences make it somewhat difficult for younger people to engage with naturism, where the older generations have mostly set the tone. What needs to happen is for people on both sides of the divide to understand this situation, and be willing to make reasonable allowances so that naturism can be enjoyed together by people regardless of age.

    An interesting – and possibly very positive development – has been noted by the general manager of the Asia Pacific region of the Eventbrite event management and ticketing company. He observes that “the number of nude events on the platform had grown 265 per cent across Australia over four years.” Much of this growth may be due to young naturists, who would be looking for ways to enjoy naturism with their peers in ways that are different from what older naturists are used to.

  • ‘I hate clothes’: What life is like as a practising nudist
    If you’ve been a “practising nudist” for more than a month or three, you’ll find little surprising in this article – your experience has probably been much like that of those quoted. However, the quotes have been selected to show naturism in a positive light – as something innocent that certain people (like yourself) find life-enhancing. So you might want to show this article to friends and relatives who have a hard time understanding what you like about nudity – just to show you’re not the only one who feels this way. Since it’s from an Australian source, everyone quoted is an Aussie, but their observations are typical of naturists everywhere. The editor/publisher of an Australian naturist magazine speculates about how much of the population in his country might be partial to naturism, though it’s impossible to know exactly. “We take some guesses,” he says. “We reckon there’s probably about four, four and half per cent, that treat naturism as part of a lifestyle. They do their nine-to-fives, they come home and the first thing they do is get their gear off and relax.”

  • Labour Weekend Hotting up for Stripping Off
    If you’re a New Zealand naturist and just reading about this, I’m afraid you’ve missed the event – the local “National Nude Gardening Day”. It was October 26. Sorry about that. But since gardening is usually done at home, it’s not too late. It may or may not be the best time for new planting, but in the southern hemisphere the days will be getting warmer for a while. So being naked in your garden probably won’t be any less easy now than on the “official” day – depending on how much your neighbors might see, or care about what they see.
    More: Naturist explains why she gets her kit off to garden,
    Get Some Sun on Your Bum this Nude Gardening Day

  • The 10 Best Nude Beaches in the U.S. AND Internationally
    Articles like this appear regularly. A few beaches often show up repeatedly, but there’s no real consensus as to what beaches are “the best”. Different beach characteristics appeal to different people. This selection, however, seems pretty good. But unfortunately, if you don’t live fairly close to the sea, you’re options will be fairly limited.

The gender imbalance problem in naturism

Here’s a new blog post from UK bloggers Hannah and Nick: Encouraging women into naturism. Almost immediately they say “Our experience is that there are actually very few who are actively against people removing their clothes in appropriate public circumstances. However, there does seem to be a gender divide when it comes to people trying naturism for themselves. Men are often keen, women less so.”
Continue reading “The gender imbalance problem in naturism”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 10/31/19

While, sadly, it’s now autumn – and getting steadily colder in the northern hemisphere – spring has arrived in the south – together with good weather for outdoor nudity. So we now have naturist stories from Australia, and should see many more until spring comes again in the north.
Continue reading “Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 10/31/19”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 10/18/19

It’s quite striking how much better-accepted naturism is in the UK compared to the US, considering how many other things (including language, to some extent) the two countries have in common. Although UK naturists are still definitely a minority, the articles discussed here should make US naturists very envious of the Brits. (The previous collection of articles also had much evidence of this.)

  • Hundreds strip off and brave North Sea in the nude in mass autumn skinny-dip
    Since 2012 British naturists in Northumberland have participated in a skinnydip at the beach on Druridge Bay close to the time of the Autumn Equinox. Almost all participants this year waded in completely naked, even though the beach is in the north of England on the North Sea, near the Scottish border – and the event began at sunrise. Daytime high temperatures in the area during September average about 60°F (16°C). The organizer of the event, however, said the temperature was “the warmest it has ever been”. He also explained that “I think people are trying to understand what we are trying to do a little bit more. It’s not just about taking our clothes off[;] it’s about taking a risk, connecting with nature, celebrating life and embracing our own bodies.” For some participants it was their first experience with social nudity. And unlike many naturist events, there were about as many women as men. But it wasn’t just a naturist event, as it also had the purpose of raising money for a local charity. The official count of participants was 737, probably a new high, and each donated £15. More than £50,000 had been raised in the previous 7 years. The event was widely reported in British news media and elsewhere, such as

  • Royal Academy visitors are invited to brush past naked man and woman in recreation of 1977 performance artwork
    Performance artist Marina Abramović came up with the simple idea of having two entirely naked performers stand facing each other in a narrow passageway and inviting members of the public (fully dressed) to squeeze between them. Marina herself and her then-boyfriend put on the first performances at an Italian art gallery in 1977. The performance was called Imponderabilia. It’s now scheduled to be repeated at London’s Royal Academy of Arts main galleries from late September to early December in 2020 – where it will be available for the general public. Two young artists will recreate the performance under Marina’s supervision (and possibly with her own participation). Although members of the public are expected to remain clothed, the piece is intended to challenge their reactions to very close interaction with others who are naked, and to “confront themes of naked vulnerability”.

    Britain’s The Sun tabloid persuaded their reporter Amy Nickell to do a reenactment of the performance together with a male model (Miguel) – both appropriately naked. Pictures of various people squeezing between Amy and Miguel give the impression (for the most part) that both handled the experience pretty well, although some of those who were required to navigate between the two did so with less equanimity – especially those of larger girth. Nevertheless, Amy reports “I was glad when I got dressed again.” Perhaps – but would she admit it if she actually enjoyed the experience? Here’s an earlier article from The Sun about the forthcoming Royal Academy of Arts performance.

  • The Yorkshire naturist club and why we shouldn’t be embarrassed by our bodies
    This is a reasonably positive article on Britain’s Yorkshire Sun Society, which was founded in 1932 and is the second oldest naturist club in the country. Patrick Galbraith, whose article this is, does remove his clothes at times. But he doesn’t seem entirely sold on the idea initially, as he begins with the admission that “It had been at least a decade since I’d seen another man in the buff and I was immediately overcome with the urge to apologise to him profusely before running away.” Although he doesn’t quite answer the implied question in the title of the article, by the end of his stay he does have this thought: “I had gone in search of the weird and discovered that it is perhaps people beyond the gates who are the weird ones – those like you and I who sweat like mad on a hot summer’s day because of some inherited belief that thighs and tummies are inherently sexual or offensive.”

  • Naked cleaners wanted in Devon and Cornwall – and they earn £45 an hour!
    What real naturist wouldn’t want to have other naturists handle tedious house cleaning chores (if the price were affordable)? It sounds almost too good to be true, so one might be a bit suspicious that a business of this sort is actually legitimate. Yet, apparently, it is. There have been a number of articles in the (British) news media about such businesses, and the article here is among the latest. The company is named Naked Cleaners (duh). According to the website, the company operates “throughout the UK”, but it is based in London. As you’d expect from a legitimate business, customers are expected to observe a number of rules, spelled out in their FAQ. For instance, touching, photographing, or videoing the cleaners isn’t allowed. Also, nobody except occupants of the home or apartment may be present – but they may be naked themselves. (They’re naturists, after all.)

    The rate for naked cleaners is £45 per hour (about $58 US). But that’s what the company is paid – presumably the cleaners don’t get all of it. Although the cleaners work naked, they aren’t necessarily long-time naturists – let alone “adult entertainers”. They may be quite new to working naked. One cleaner, quoted in the article, said “I was new to naturism. I had never done it before – I hadn’t even been on a nudist beach or anything like that. I’d just done it in private. I wasn’t nervous because I’m quite comfortable being naked.” However, she explained, “I found the first time quite liberating if anything, because I like being naked. If I’m by myself or with my close friends or a boyfriend, I’ll walk around naked. I’m not sure exactly why I like it, I just feel more comfortable that way.”

  • Student animal doctors strip off for naked calendar to raise money for drought-stricken farmers
    We turn now to Australia, another English-speaking country where naturism is (probably) more successful than in the US. Since we’re nearing the end of 2019, ’tis the season for a new spate of calendars to make their appearance for 2020. Last January we asked the question Why are calendars featuring naked people such a fad in Britain? It was noted then that Australia also had such calendars – and the latest for 2020 is also from Down Under. According to the article
    Student vets have stripped off their scrubs for a cheeky naked calendar to mark the end of five gruelling years of study. The calendar has become a tradition for veterinary students at Australia’s James Cook University – and this year’s class are no exception. Striking nude poses with strategically placed hats, 40 classmates took part, with the proceeds going towards their graduation ball and a local charity.
    Although whoever decides such things (pusillanimously, as usual) didn’t allow any full-frontal nudity, the calendar pictures are generally entertaining and imaginative. The calendar can be purchased online for $20 AUD (about $14 US) plus S/H at Vets Uncovered. Quite a bargain. Another article on this is here.

  • 10 Biggest Fears of a Beginning Nudist and How To Overcome Them
    The hyperactive (and non-US) bloggers at Naked Wanderings list some of the most common fears that intimidate prospective naturists. The list will be very familiar to current naturists. And the truth is that if a prospective naturist will actually give social nudity a try in a suitable environment, all but one of the fears on the list will quickly be perceived as small problems, at most. The one remaining fear, unfortunately, is the biggie: “How will I explain this to friends and family?” This one needs a lot more thought and effort to overcome.

    The advice given in the article for this fear is really too skimpy. For instance “The easy solution: Just don’t tell them. It’s none of anyone’s business if you prefer to spend your free time at a nudist resort.” That is, of course, quite unrealistic unless you’re a hermit living by yourself – in which case you may already be used to getting along with few or no clothes. Not only is the advice unrealistic, but the tendency of many or most naturists to be secretive about their enjoyment of nudity is most unfortunate. It’s probably the biggest reason that naturism has struggled so long and so unsuccessfully to really catch on. Simply put: people who become curious about naturism probably have at least some relatives or friends who share their interest – but aren’t aware of that since the others are also secretive. So people who are curious about naturism have much difficulty overcoming the other fears in the first place. A good approach would be to bring up the subject of naturism casually in conversation, perhaps by mentioning news stories like any of the above. If done often enough, others who don’t have a negative attitude towards nudity could be found. It’s also important to become convinced that enjoying nonsexual social nudity is not doing anything wrong. After that, it’s easier to figure out how to explain this fact to others.