Confession: It doesn’t take much to get me naked, especially when there’s sun, beach, and surf involved.
In fact, I’ve been stripping down in public settings for a long time — first as a nude model in college, then at a slew of hippie-dippy, clothing-optional resorts on the West Coast for the past decade or so.
Indeed, given the choice, I prefer getaways that offer an au natural option. For me, baring it all (or nearly all, depending upon resort policy) is pretty liberating.
More than likely, you're thinking this kind of scenario might be for me, but it is so not for you. But before you dismiss the so-called nacation (that's nude vacation), hear me out.Here are six reasons why you should give it a try... at least once.
1. All kinds of people do it.
You might be surprised, but nacations appeal to people of all ages and all walks of life. On a recent clothing-optional trip, I met people doctors, politicians, and PTA moms ranging from their 20s to 70s. These travelers hailed from all pockets of the world, religious, and political beliefs and socioeconomically backgrounds. Despite the differences, the common denominator was respect and open mindedness.
2. It eliminates the what-do-I-wear dilemma.
Travel packing is an advanced skill — and it can also be one of the biggest stressors in vacation planning. You don’t need to be a packing pro to nail the “what to wear” question for a nude vacation. Sunscreen, flip flops, sarongs, and bikini bottoms are your basic go-tos. At most clothing-optional resorts, you’re required to cover up your privates during meals; the definition of "coverage" varies from a thong and pasties to full-on cocktail attire. Some have theme nights, where guests can wear costumes… or not. Participation is always optional. Depending upon house rules, I tend to wear whatever makes me feel most comfortable. In my experience, most clothing-optional resorts embrace a whatever-makes-you-happy attitude.
3. It’s less awkward that you’d imagine.
Sure, it may be intimidating to bare it all in front of strangers. But once you get over the initial reveal, I pinky swear promise you won’t feel self-conscious being nude. People do look, and maybe for a few seconds more than you’re accustomed to. But the gaze is usually followed by a flood of compliments. Trust me, being told you’re beautiful by respectful admirers never grows old. I’ve never for a second felt pressured to do something I didn’t want to do, nor been on the receiving end of inappropriate groping. Ever. Plus let's be real: From a purely selfish perspective, if you’re looking to hook up, meeting nude is a great way to get a preview glimpse of the goods!
4. It increases your body confidence.
Few of us have the kind of bodies that society deems perfect. That’s OK: At a clothing-option resort, you’ll see the full range of bodies. The big difference is that nobody cares. Take away judgment and all the messaging about how you’re supposed to look and your body image will skyrocket. Trust me on this.
5. It’s safer than you think.
I’m hyper-vigilant about my personal safety. I’m OK being hit on my strangers... as long as it’s done with deference. Even in sexually charged, booze-fueled, clothing-optional environments, I’ve never felt unsafe. Security has always had a strong presence in my experience, and as a solo female traveler, other guests have always had my back.
6. It wipes out tan lines.
As a Vitamin D-deprived Seattleite, I extra-appreciate the almighty sun. There are few things I crave as much as the feeling of warm sun beating on my body. And if I’m sans clothes, there’s more skin to soak up the glow! (Just don’t forget the SPF.)
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