- Nudist fun: Bodypaint with friends
Bodypainting is a great way for people of all ages – from toddlers on up – to get naked and have lots of good, clean fun. Better yet, it can be practiced anywhere from private backyards to swank naturist resorts. Artistic talent may give more aesthetically pleasing results, but isn’t important for enjoying the application of (washable) paint to bare skin. It’s a way to “paint nudes” – without needing any artificial canvas. Even better, those who paint others need not be naturists themselves, although they mustn’t be afraid of nudity. However, they might discover a temptation to get naked themselves. Naturism Girl shows in a very brief video that “Just being naked on the beach is amazing by itself. But if you are looking for more fun activities, bodypainting can be a great choice.”
- Why being a nudist is way better than not being one
Many of these points are well-known to naturists, but the list itself is extensive. It probably contains at least a few points you may not have thought of, so one or more could come in handy when explaining to others why you like being naked. There are about 50 separate points in the list. Here are some of my favorites:
- It promotes family togetherness.
- Water and being naked go hand in hand.
- We humans feel more of a part of nature like we should.
- It’s so much fun, and more fun than being clothed.
- It’s hard to be naked and sad.
- It’s carefree, like in childhood and the summer.
- It means all of us get to be ourselves.
- 9 Common Myths about Naturism that are WRONG
I covered the general topic of most of the common misconceptions about naturism and social nudity here in some detail. Most of the issues could be of concern to anyone who enjoys nudity either at clothing-optional beaches or naturist clubs and resorts. And also nudity at home unless entirely in secret.
The account referenced in the title above deals mainly with issues of concern to people thinking about visiting naturist clubs and resorts, as well as clothing-optional beaches to a slight extent. It hardly touches on issues of possible concern to home naturists.
Below are capsule summaries of why most of the concerns mentioned are based on “myths” about naturism – albeit a few that have some basis in the real world. As far as fears about visiting naturist clubs and resorts are concerned, there’s a very simple solution in many cases. Just read carefully the website of a specific club or resort to learn about their policies and find out what is or isn’t considered acceptable behavior. If the information is sparse or ambiguous, simply call the place before going there to clear things up. In addition, there’s often information available at sites like Tripadvisor and Yelp.
It’s more difficult to get information about clothing-optional beaches, which seldom have websites, although there may be online reviews for some of the popular ones. In this case, a personal visit or two may be the best or only way to learn about the place. The main concerns would be about legal issues and the general nature of regular visitors.
So here are brief summaries about concerns discussed in the article:
- You might end up at a sex club. Response: Real naturist clubs and resorts have nothing in common with “sex clubs”, except for the presence of nudity. It’s almost always possible to identify real naturist clubs by reading the rules stated on the website. If any doubt remains, just call the place and ask what’s allowed and what isn’t.
- Naturist places are full of voyeurs. Response: Real naturist clubs do not tolerate people making others uncomfortable by staring. Reporting any occurrences to the management should result in the problem being handled quickly. Naturists at popular clothing-optional beaches generally make voyeurs feel quite unwelcome.
- Naturists only camp. Response: Not true. If you don’t care for camping, before going read on the club’s website about what accommodations are available, and call ahead to make a reservation for the type of accommodation you would consider suitable.
- Naturists are hippies. Response: Not true. Many different types of people visit most naturist places. A few may have been “hippies” in their youth – 40 or more years ago. You might even enjoy meeting some of them.
- Naturism is expensive. Response: There are many different types of naturist clubs and resorts, and each has its own range of facilities. Call ahead to check whether the prices fit your budget. There are also many “non-landed” clubs that meet at private homes, sometimes go as a group to naturist places, and have very reasonable membership fees.
- You need a perfect body to become a naturist. Response: Not true. No legitimate naturist club discriminates on the basis of physical appearance. You’re likely to see a wide variety of body types. At first, you may need a little time to feel comfortable being naked, but most people adjust quickly. Being naked at home more often before visiting a beach or club should help.
- Naturism is for old people. Response: Usually false. There are various reasons younger people often aren’t represented in proportion to their percentage of the population – lack of free time, for example. Myths like some discussed here are another reason. Everyone, regardless of age, is made to feel welcome if real naturism is what they’re looking for.
- You have to be naked 24/7. Response: Not true. At all but a few naturist places these days, nudity is not required, except around swimming pools and spas. First-timers can delay undressing until they become comfortable. To be clear about the rules, call ahead before going.
- Children don’t belong at naturist places. Response: Usually false. Seeing adult nudity is not harmful to children. There are a few naturist resorts that are “for adults only”. This may be because adult visitors want to enjoy a brief time free of childcare responsibilities – rather than open sexual activity. Call ahead to verify that visitors under 21 are welcome, and if so they’ll be very safe as long as they have age-appropriate supervision.
- History of Naturism in Ireland
There was a story revealing that Ireland is a great place for naturists – back here: Naturism in Ireland is Alive and Well. Now there’s a sequel discussed in the article linked above. It’s an interview with the current president of the Irish Naturist Association, Pat Gallagher (how much more Irish could someone with that name possibly be?).
Regarding the INA’s founding, he says, “these original members met while on holiday in Corsica and decided to form an association in Ireland when they returned home from this no doubt naturist vacation. Later INA committee meetings took place in a pub which was owned by one of the original committee’s members, and most original member meetups were in each other’s homes.” So the earliest members were home naturists to begin with, and the founders got inspiration, no doubt, from French naturists in Corsica.
There are many other interesting details in the article, which are instructive for how to successfully promote naturism in a country the size of Ireland, which has a population of around 6.6 million. That’s about the population of a mid-size U. S. state like Indiana or Tennessee. In this regard, Gallagher has an interesting comment:
“Lessons learned from other naturist federations as to how they made naturism more acceptable in their countries, gave us and continue to give us ideas as to how we can promote naturism in Ireland. However, I still think the International Naturist Federation (INF-FNI) has a lot more to do to make naturism more acceptable everywhere. I believe that this organisation should not leave it to individual countries to fight government policies in relation to naturism. ”
In the U. S., the two national naturist organizations (AANR and TNS) correspond roughly to the INF. These two have done very little (if anything) to promote statewide naturist organization in individual states. There really are no statewide organizations of much consequence in any of the 50 states. Having such organizations is important for the purpose of lobbying individual state legislatures to make much-needed improvements to the legal climate for naturism in each state.
That task is left mainly (if at all) to smaller local groups, which lack the clout, skills, personnel, and resources to have much influence in even the smallest states. In addition, there’s almost no capability of providing advice and resources to support establishment and operation of local naturist clubs and beaches. So it’s hardly surprising that most naturists in the U. S. are able to enjoy naturism only in their own homes or with small groups of friends. The organizational structure lying between local groups and the national organizations is mostly not there. (AANR does have 6 “regions” of roughly similar size, each of which corresponds to a population (if evenly divided) of about 55 million people – more than the population of California.)
- Bathing Suits Optional at This Public Pool in Spain
Here’s a brief article about the successful establishment of swimsuit-optional hours at another public pool in Spain. It begins:
“Bathing suits are optional at this public pool in Spain’s Madrid on Sunday as the municipal sports centre of Aluche wants to celebrate ‘No swimsuit day.’ The swimsuit will only be optional in the morning shift and not in the afternoon shift (the two schedules created due to the Covid-19 pandemic) to celebrate this initiative launched in collaboration with the Spanish Naturism Federation.”
In Spanish, the organization’s name is Federación Española de Naturismo. Thanks to the efforts of that group, clothing-optional hours have also been established at other public and privately-operated pools in Madrid. Unfortunately, based on this article, it seems that the clothing-optional hours were for only one specific day. Nevertheless, as in Ireland, this illustrates what can be accomplished for naturism by a national naturist organization.
- Swimsuit optional: the spontaneous, liberating joy of skinny-dipping
Most of this will seem quite familiar to naturists who’ve ventured outside of a naturist park or resort to enjoy nudity in nature. But it’s still refreshing to hear it said from a person who doesn’t especially identify as a naturist.
According to the article’s sub-heading, “Like her granny before her, Rosie Green has plunged into sun-warmed seas, freezing lakes, moonlit rivers – all completely naked. She reveals here the spontaneous, liberating joy of skinny-dipping.”
The article, written by Rosie, begins:
“ My grandmother loved getting naked. Not when grocery shopping or gardening; she wasn’t some kind of eccentric or deviant. In fact, the only kinks she had were in her garden hose. But she did love skinny-dipping. When confronted with a pond, lake, river or pool she couldn’t wait to disrobe.
… I’ve inherited her love of skinny-dipping. On my first Teletext-booked holiday with friends we ran stark naked into the Mediterranean. When we emerged, we had gained a welcoming committee and lost our clothes, but that didn’t put me off. I’ve plunged into freezing lakes, climbed over fences to swim in hotel pools and splashed in rivers at moonlight. All naked.”
Apart from the influence of her grandmother, how does Rosie explain her delight in skinny-dipping? She cites a number of factors, including teenage rebelliousness. “It unearths a little of the 18-year-old me. Which, I suspect, is what makes my teenagers so completely mortified about me doing it. There’s plenty of eye-rolling and indignation as well as threats of disowning me. But I don’t care what my kids say because skinny-dipping feels spontaneous, joyous, freeing, brave, exhilarating… and sensual.”
Naturists often explain their love of being naked as, simply, “because it feels so good”. This is generally not easy for non-naturists to understand. But as Rosie explains, it’s a complex feeling. There are several different aspects to it, each of which is reasonable and understandable.
Rosie goes on at some length with ideas of a psychologist, Fiona Murden. Like Murden, Rosie finds the appeal of being naked – skinny-dipping – is related to being immersed in water. “The silken water’s caress and the bonding laughter with my friends is balm for the body and mind,” she writes. But only water of a reasonable temperature. “For me, skinny-dipping is a high-summer activity. I know some brave souls throw themselves into icy pools in January, but not me. In my world it is forever linked with languid, lazy hot days.”
Most naturists probably think there’s more to nudity than that. Many, of course, are quite happy being clothesfree in the warmth and privacy of their home, with or without the company of others who also enjoy being naked. Naturism has different yet legitimate meanings for different people.
- All The U.S. Cities & States Where You Can (Legally) Celebrate National Nude Day
Here’s one more article about the quasi-holiday “National Nude Day”, which was written about previously here and here. The article lists 6 U. S. cities and states where, supposedly, it’s legal to be naked in public: Seattle (WA), Oregon, Austin (TX), New York (NY), Philadelphia (PA), and Florida.
Don’t rely too heavily on this advice, however. In all cases, nudity must not be “lewd” or “offensive” to others. Those are fairly subjective standards. And where States are concerned, there may be local ordinances that could be much more restrictive about nudity. Unlike countries, such as England and Ireland, where there’s a uniform standard for the whole country, at least in theory, the places listed here may not be tolerant of nudity just anywhere, even if it isn’t “lewd”. The situation in Florida is actually a little murky. For instance, nudity may be OK on private property, even if it’s visible from other property. But local law enforcement might cite some other violation, such as “disorderly conduct” if they feel like it.
Also, there are a couple of notable omissions. One is California, where, as in Oregon, non-lewd nudity is technically legal anywhere (by a court decision), provided there aren’t stricter local ordinances. Also, on Federal land, such as National Forests, nudity may be allowed (or not) depending on local regulations.
- Fullers Mill Gardens to host naked visit for naturists
Here’s yet another example of how naturism is regarded in sensible countries like England (at least in this respect) as a perfectly acceptable (albeit rare) personal interest – quite “normal”, in other words. So setting aside a specific time for people to nakedly enjoy a lovely botanic garden isn’t controversial. It took place in August and was only for a few hours on one day. But it still attracted favorable attention to the place, and over half the ticket price was donated to a charity. Some might dismiss something like this as a typical British “eccentricity”. But so what? It’s better than the clotheist conformity prevalent in most other countries.
Another news article about this event: Back to nature – naked event at botanic gardens
July was a considerably busier month for naturist material than June this year. Although there was a great deal of pandemic yet to unfold, at least naturists weren’t losing interest. Of course, July is probably the peak month for naturism in the northern hemisphere. So there’s a lot to cover here.
- Artistic naturist photography
Artistic nude photography and photographic images of naturism are often considered completely separate categories. The first reference below provides good examples of how the two can be combined. As some of the images there show, images of unclothed people in natural settings make an obvious choice – but not the only one. The second reference is more strictly “artistic” in nature, but it uses naked bodies in abstract ways to communicate a message.
- Naturism: face, without fear, “the beauty of a naked body”
- Nude art photographer shows the irony of the exhibition during Covid-19
Note that the language in both of these items is Portugese, but a translation into English, Spanish, or French can be had by selecting the appropriate flag in the top right of the page.
- Naked Bike Ride 2020: ‘As Bare As You Dare’ But Don’t Forget The Mask
This item and the next one are further examples of how naturists are adapting to the pandemic. Some of the customary World Naked Bike Rides that take place in the warmer months were simply cancelled this year. But many others took place as usual. The ride pictured above was in Spain.
- From naked gardening to Yoga sessions at Zoom, see how nudists connect during blockades
Most naturist clubs and resorts everywhere did not open at the usual time, but many gradually opened one or more months late, and use of masks, social distancing, hand-washing, etc. were at least strongly recommended. Normal use of outdoor facilities, such as swimming pools and tennis courts was generally allowed, with mild restrictions.
To make up for the more limited options available, naturists also turned to activities like gardening and home improvement. And innovate, forward-thinking naturist organizations – British Naturism in particular – used video conferencing tools to provide entirely new services like panel discussions, virtual “pub nights”, and classes in yoga, drawing, and painting. (More about that here.) Such activities will certainly continue to be popular even when the pandemic eventually subsides. Notably, they can be accessed from almost anywhere in the world.
- Nudity in protests
Certain things that occur in “normal” times did not stop even during a pandemic – political protests in particular. In the U. S., in fact, there were numerous dramatic protests across the country in response to various incidents of brutal and totally unnecessary murders of Black men by undisciplined police officers and civilian vigilantes. The protests in Portland, Oregon were especially tumultuous – and led to threatening overreaction against protesters.
To call attention to the irrational police violence that included use of tear gas and rubber bullets, one very brave – and naked – woman staged a protest of her own. The protester, who goes by the name “Naked Athena”, explained that “being nude in public is nothing new” to her. Although police shot pepper balls close to her, she was unharmed and departed casually after about ten minutes.
Using nudity in social and political demonstrations and protests is, or course, not especially uncommon. World Naked Bike Rides are a particularly tame example. This case was quite a bit more daring – but it pointed out dramatically the vulnerability of all the protesters in the face of heavily armed police.
- ‘Naked Athena’: The story behind the surreal photos of Portland protester
- Protester dubbed ‘Naked Athena’ faces off with Portland police
- Portland’s “Naked Athena” Speaks for the First Time to a Local Podcast
- Portland protester ‘Naked Athena’ speaks out: ‘I am notoriously naked’
- ‘Naked Athena’ faces off with police during Portland protest
- Women in naturism
One of the most common questions that naturists and non-naturists alike wonder about social nudity is why more women don’t participate. (Look here for previous posts about this.) As the first of the two articles below remarks, “The answer is multi-faceted.” The problem extends far beyond the issue of having “gender balance” at naturist clubs and resorts. It exists just as much at clothing-optional beaches, World Naked Bike Rides, and other naturist events and festivals.
It might be tempting to reach for simple answers, such as that women are simply shyer about exposing their naked bodies, at least in the presence of men. But there are complications even in that. It’s tangled up, of course, with the issue of body acceptance – but that’s a problem for men too. And “normal” women’s clothing often exposes more epidermis than men’s clothing does. The first article below, despite its title, doesn’t attempt to go deeply into reasons for the problem. Instead, it offers various suggestions for what can be done to deal with the problem. It turns out that the techniques are basically alike for men and women.
The second article is a personal account by one woman who actually was quite daunted by the idea of being naked in view of men. This was more a result of being a survivor of sexual assault than of body acceptance. The woman may well never be a naturist, but she has managed to overcome her fear of nudity, in order to be able to enjoy it in situations that are comfortable for her.
- Immersion in Europe’s first naturist garage sale
Now here is a genuinely creative idea for promoting naturism – a carefully planned and executed “garage sale” in France, where nudity is required for visitors. (Events like this, except for the nudity, are also known as “flea markets”, “yard sales”, “tag sales”, etc.) This wasn’t some event with a few rows of folding tables in a dusty parking lot. As can be seen from the picture, it was in a clean indoor space with uniform, purpose-made white booths for the display of the merchandise. Rows were even neatly arranged in alphabetical order.
In countries like the U. S. that lack as many dedicated naturists as France, the event need not be as formal. It should be clothing-optional, but without requiring full nudity. Visitors who do opt for getting naked should be able to have their clothes stored neatly in a secure space. Obviously, nudity-phobic people would stay away. But anyone who might want to glean some insight into why naturists like being naked could drop in – and maybe doff some or all of their clothes as well – for a safe first experience in social nudity. Naturally, this could be arranged by a local naturist group, or even a few naturist friends who want to spread the concept of naturism.
Perhaps it sounds unlikely a small group could make this work. But suppose an existing naturist campground or resort did this, perhaps even on a regular basis. The general public would be invited. There could be a nominal entrance fee (maybe $5) or maybe none. (After all, many naturist places charge nothing for a first visit.) Food sales might help cover costs. Full nudity wouldn’t be required except, as usual, in swimming pools and spas.
Wouldn’t this be a great way to attract new members or regular visitors – especially people who are already somewhat comfortable with nudity, at least in private? This is only one of a number of possibilities for naturist places to attract new people. Vintage car shows are held at many naturist places now, but that’s kind of a special interest. How about bake sales, craft fairs, art/photography shows, yoga demonstrations, gardening classes?
Naturists really need to become more creative in how they promote social nudity.
- The History of Nudism: Europe
People have lived much of their lives happily naked for as long as there have been humans. But many naturists are aware that nudism and naturism as currently understood originated in Europe – mainly in Germany – around 1900. It took almost three decades to spread to North America. But those earliest decades established the basic features of nudism and naturism as practiced today. The couple that hosts Our Natural Blog narrates a 9-minute video that gives an overview of the beginning of contemporary nudism in its early years in Europe.
- International Nude Day, July 14
As noted in the report for June, 2020, July 14 was designated as “International Nude Day” by some New Zealanders in 2003 (or thereabouts). (In some countries it may be called “National Nude Day”). One had to wonder how widely celebrated this day would be. The answer, sadly, is: not a whole lot. There was little publicity about it at the time, and apparently only one national naturist organization did much of anything to promote it. That was the American Association for Nude Recreation (AANR). They even produced a 1-minute video to make note of the day – although it shows almost no actual nudity.
That was a little odd, since AANR is mainly a trade association that promotes naturist resorts and travel businesses. Unlike naturist organizations in some other countries, AANR does little organizing and promotion of naturist activities (such as festivals and beach events). British Naturism, for example, often does things like that (at least in the absence of a pandemic).
Exactly what would people who actually heard about it be expected to do on this day? Presumably, naturists who already enjoyed nudity would do so about as much as they would on any other summer day. But why would a significant number of others who’ve had no experience with social nudity suddenly decide to go naked on July 14? For that to happen, there’d surely need to be wide publicity of the great variety of possible naturist activities that could be enjoyed. Not just a trip to the closest naturist resort, but naked hiking, naked camping, visiting clothing-optional beaches, body painting, or just hanging out naked at home with family and friends.
The first article below is from NatCon, a regional naturist organization in Cornwall, UK. It does little but note the day, very briefly mention some benefits of naturism, and show the AANR video. Somewhat of a half-hearted effort, but more than most other organizations offered. The second article is from a New York tabloid that begins with a slightly dismissive tone, but says a little about two young body-positive women, one of whom, named Grace, posted some (non-nude) selfies on her Instagram account and posted on Twitter that “Our bodies are a beautiful thing that should be embraced and cherished. … Nudity doesn’t have to be sexual — it can be empowering and a symbol of confidence.”
Yeah, this is very late again. It’s only about June stories. Been a very hectic few months. Yet it still seems worthwhile to make note of some of the most interesting stories from June. Of course, it can’t be considered “news”, but I try to select articles that won’t soon cease being interesting. This is what’s called “history”, right?
- Meet Nudists: How to Make Friends In a Niche Community
Is it difficult to find naturist friends? No, not necessarily. Most naturists are open, friendly folks. If you’re an outgoing, extroverted person, making naturist friends should be quite easy. If you’re more introverted, it’s naturally not quite as easy. But when you’re naked with others, there’s a shared sense of both vulnerability and openness that can significantly enhance the possibility of forming friendships.
Even if you’re a newcomer at most naturist clubs and resorts, you’ll probably notice that many or most others will smile and wave as you walk around or sit by your tent or camper. That’s a good sign you might start a conversation on the spot. Perhaps you’ll see that someone is carrying sporting equipment, walking a dog, has interesting tattoos, or in some other way provides an opening to start a conversation.
Don’t be shy about it, if there’s any indication the other person shares an interest of yours – in addition to naturism. Enjoying nudity is a very significant characteristic common to just about everyone around – plenty of incentive to discover other shared interests that can be a basis for friendship.
Besides a naturist club or resort, a clothing-optional beach is the other main place you might be in the company of many folks enjoying nudity. But there are significant differences you should keep in mind. In particular, many people visit a beach just for enjoying the sunshine and the water, and not for socializing.
Many people at a clothing-optional beach may have little or no experience being naked around others, so they’ll probably be nervous and wary of being approached by naked strangers. In this situation, if you’re already fairly comfortable being naked it may be best to let others approach you, or to watch for positive signs that others are comfortable with having a conversation.
One idea you could try is to bring extra snacks and cold beverages to the beach. If you see others who appear to be friendly and approachable, offer to share some! Sharing food is a very ancient human bonding experience. The same idea would work at naturist campgrounds and parks too, of course. Get creative.
The article cited here offers a lot of good thoughts about finding naturist friends, and it deals not only with the “real-life” environment (which is certainly the most satisfying one), but also the online environment as well. The latter case can be tricky, since you can’t be quite as confident about the dedication of others to the principles of “real” naturism. On the other hand, online is certainly a good way to make initial contacts with people who’re happy to discuss naturism. And if they happen not to live at a great distance from you, meeting in “real life” will be that much easier.
Here are some other good articles on making naturist friends:
- A scientific experimental study finds that nudity helps improve body acceptance
“It’s official – nakedness leads to improvements in body image!”, a British Naturism post in June proclaimed. The post contains a summary of the research, in which “51 participants arrived for the experiment, half of whom spent 45 minutes socialising with clothes on (the control group), the other half doing the same naked.”
After a description of the experiment, it’s reported that “The participants were all happy to engage in the experiment once they were given their instructions, whether naked or clothed. And there were no differences in the responses between men and women or between different age ranges.”
The post announced a study conducted Dr. Keon West (Twitter), a Reader in Social Psychology in the Psychology departement of Goldsmiths University in London. It’s entitled I Feel Better Naked: Communal Naked Activity Increases Body Appreciation by Reducing Social Physique Anxiety
From the abstract:
“Positive body image predicts several measures of happiness, well-being, and sexual functioning. Prior research has suggested a link between communal naked activity and positive body image, but has thus far not clarified either the direction or mechanisms of this relationship. This was the first randomized controlled trial of the effects of nakedness on body image. … This research provides initial evidence that naked activity can lead to improvements in body image”
Although the research article is behind a paywall, there’s a little more about it here. A related paper, entitled “A nudity-based intervention to improve body image, self-esteem, and life satisfaction” is still in press, but is described here.
An earlier study from Dr. West, entitled Naked and Unashamed: Investigations and Applications of the Effects of Naturist Activities on Body Image, Self-Esteem, and Life Satisfaction, was published in the Journal of Happiness Studies in January 2017.
Quoting from the abstract of that paper,
“It was found that more participation in naturist activities predicted greater life satisfaction—a relationship that was mediated by more positive body image, and higher self-esteem (Study 1). Applying these findings, it was found that participation in actual naturist activities led to an increase in life satisfaction, an effect that was also mediated by improvements in body image and self-esteem (Studies 2 and 3).”
A January 2017 British Naturism post quickly announced that research, summarizing it as “Science proves Naturism is good for you”. That post contains a brief video (containing clips from a London World Naked Bike Ride). A Goldsmiths press release says Research finds nudism makes us happier. Felicity’s Blog provides many details: New Research Shows That Naturism Improves Body Image & Happiness.
That research got a considerable amount of media coverage, such as:
- Scientists have discovered the secret to happiness – and it’s stripping off and getting naked
- Being naked makes us happier and more satisfied with our bodies
- Being Naked Is Great For Your Body Image And Satisfaction With Life
- Want to Be Happier? Take Your Clothes Off
- Naturism Study Shows Swimming Naked Makes You Happier
- International Nude Day
Well, it’s not exactly a well-known holiday, perhaps not even to most naturists. But there really is an “International Nude Day”, which is always July 14, and it is recognized by several online sites that record “special” days. For example: here, here, here, here, and here. However, it’s not always taken very seriously at such places. A few other sites looking for “interesting” material, such as this, also take note of the day.
Naturally, because summer in the northern hemisphere is vacation time for most people and the best time to be naked outdoors, the whole month of July deserves to be considered a National/International Nude Month.
The idea apparently originated in New Zealand, even though July 14 is smack in the middle of winter down there. (This Rock Haven Lodge page gives the year as 2003.) Nevertheless, a NZ site should be a reliable source:
“New Zealand’s (and now the world’s) National Nude day is not a public holiday but a day to celebrate the human form.
Brain child of former All Black and TV presenter Marc Ellis, National Nude Day (also now known as International Nude Day) is a celebration of the skin with much fun attached. ….
Nude Day is a one day a year that all in NZ can celebrate nudeness, nakedness, being in the nuddy, running free in all your original raw beauty, putting on your best birthday suit. It’s day everyone can participate in, fat, skinny, big, small, firm, soft and the flabby can all get involved.”
There are a couple of other things in early July with the same idea: International Skinny Dip Day, promoted by the American Association for Nude Recreation (second Saturday in July), and Nude Recreation Week (the week after July 4), which was promoted by The Naturist Society.
It doesn’t seem like many naturist organizations promote the day very much, if at all. Few naturist blogs mention it either, although the Sesual Nudist has a good post. Alexis remarks: “Having a holiday, even if unofficial, to encourage and support nudity is along the path to normalizing naturism, and I certainly think we should do what we can to push this along. Who knows, maybe we can get it more widely recognized as a holiday…wouldn’t that be nice?!?”
Yes, it certainly would be nice. That’s a very good point. If the date were much more widely promoted by naturist organizations and businesses catering to naturists, there would be a natural opportunity to bring naturist ideas to a wide audience, provided it’s taken seriously enough.
But you don’t have to wait for some organization to take the initiative. You can do it yourself! If you have open-minded friends with whom you haven’t yet have discussed your interest in social nudity, this special day would be the perfect occasion to let them know. If there are other friends who already know, also invite them along for a visit in the afternoon or evening, especially if you have a swimming pool or spa. Provide plenty of snacks or have a cookout. And make it clear that you plan to be clothesfree (but nobody else need do likewise, of course). If you already have friends nearby who enjoy nudity, be sure to invite them too.
When we get around to dealing with naturist articles for July, it will be interesting to see just how much attention centers on July 14 (and related days).
- Florida has another official clothing-optional beach
We noted back in January that the East coast of Florida was on track to get another clothing-optional beach, about halfway between portions of the Canaveral National Seashore to the north and Haulover Beach in Miami to the south. Almost 6 months later that became a reality.
A section of Blind Creek Beach, near Fort Pierce, has been unofficially clothing-optional for more than 20 years – possibly as long as 50 years. But a 4-1 vote by the County Council on June 2 made 36 acres of the beach officially clothing-optional. That status has been generally accepted by locals for much of the preceding two decades, so the main difference will be that signs will be posted to alert visitors who might be unaware that there could be naked people on the beach, restrooms would be provided, and (perhaps) lifeguards might even be hired.
What’s taken so long for this development? In recent times it hasn’t been local opposition to nudity so much as the need for the county to spend a little bit of money on the restrooms. The Florida economy is very dependent on tourism. If local naturists could just put in enough effort to inform the public of the value of naturist visitors, there’s still plenty of beach space in Florida that’s not yet clothing-optional. The American Association for Nude Recreation has a report on this very topic: The Economic Impact of Nude Tourism & Recreation in Florida. Other states that already have significant naturist destinations should also take note.
- Naked but unafraid: Blind Creek Beach gets St. Lucie County designation as ‘clothing-optional’
- Nude beach formally recognized in St. Lucie County
- Naturism during a pandemic
In June the pandemic seemed to be winding down. (Ha!) So some naturist resorts in Europe, North America, and elsewhere started opening up, but usually making a good effort to observe sensible safety guidelines. Many naturists chose other ways to enjoy nudity safely.
Here are a few reports:
- What nudists do during a lockdown
- Clothes off, masks on: Reopening a nudist resort during a pandemic
- Getting naked in quarantine: Interest peaks in nudist lifestyle during COVID-19 pandemic
- From naked gardening to Zoom yoga sessions, here’s how nudists managed to stay connected during lockdowns
- Naturism in Ireland is Alive and Well
A small number of European countries are known for having a fair number of places for naturists, such as clothing-optional beaches, campgrounds, resorts, swimming centers, spas, and guest houses. France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Croatia, and even England, are names that quickly come to mind. But … Ireland? Apparently it should be in that list too.
The Irish Naturist Association has recently been actively pursuing this idea – for much the same reason that applies to Florida: naturist facilities attract naturist tourists to spend money locally. It’s also helped a lot that, as the article notes, “In the past twenty to thirty years Ireland has become a much more open minded and culturally diverse society. As part of the ongoing liberal attitudes new laws were passed by parliament in 2017 which now make being naked in public no longer illegal or a prosecutable offence.” The U. S. should be so fortunate, but sadly (in most states), it’s still in the dark ages, at least as far as public nudity is concerned.
Ireland’s enlightened attitude shouldn’t be so surprising, since a similar liberalization has occurred during the same period in England – Ireland’s close neighbor. Not only do the two countries share a similar climate, but there are cultural similarities as well. Ireland (except for Northern Ireland) achieved complete independence from Britain in 1921. But for centuries Ireland had long been dominated by its neighbor. So people could move between the two islands without much trouble. And English is very widely spoken in Ireland, as well as the native Irish.
The Irish Naturist Association has actually existed since 1963. So organized naturism in Ireland does have close to a 60-year history. The article points out that “many more [people] are accepting of and taking part in naturism in Ireland. Indoor facilities, swimming pools, saunas, Yoga/meditation retreats and other such facilities” book naked events. And outdoors, “naturists also make use of traditional known naturist used beaches and outdoor swimming areas. Currently there are some thirty-three documented beaches in the Republic of Ireland.”
- Naturist Bed & Breakfast with Winery
Speaking of places where it might be surprising to find good places to be naked – as well as a thriving winery – how about Oklahoma? Not everyone’s idea of an idyllic place for naturism, shall we say?
But, as naturist author/blogger Will Forest writes in a review of the Wakefield Country Inn and Winery, it’s “really three favorite things” that “combines (1) a bed & breakfast and (2) a winery with (3) a naturist philosophy.” The establishment describes itself on its (non-naturist) website:
“We are an adults-only (must be 21) bed and breakfast (it is our home, not a hotel) and winery, located in southeastern Oklahoma, between Ada and McAlester off Highway 75. If you’re looking for solitude, peace and quiet, we are located on 50 acres and our closest neighbor is 1/2 mile away. … The sole purpose of our bed and breakfast is for couples to re-connect/re-kindle the romance in their relationship.”
Here’s the reviewer’s conclusion:
“A summary for this fantastic three-in-one destination: (1) The bed & breakfast is terrific, and the facilities are beautiful. (2) The winery is wonderful and the wines are outstanding. (3) It’s the people -the owners, the guests – who really bring this lovely establishment to life and who espouse the naturist philosophy. The owners know that their home business has become a gateway for many who are curious about social nudism, and who try it for the first time right there.”
It seems to me that establishments like this – small and run by real naturists who love social nudity – may be the future of naturism. Provided they are numerous enough for nearby naturists to visit easily. In the U. S. (outside of Florida, at least) larger naturist facilities are probably going to be few and far between for some time to come. They’re expensive to start and operate. And in many parts of the country, they may be viable only if located in areas that are already close to popular tourist destinations.