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.

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