Will Vloggers Inspire the World to Get Naked?

Last week, The Meandering Naturist asked a question that most promotors of naturism are struggling with: Is social media worth the effort in a naturist world? Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and the likes are often seen as the enemy because they have strict censorship rules that demonize the human body in its natural form. Why would we invest time (and let alone money) in something like that?

 

On the other hand, these are unique tools with which we can potentially reach millions of other people and explain to them what naturism is really about. Before, we had to rely on willing journalists who wanted to do a piece about our way of living. And then hope that they understood everything correctly and don’t turn it into a big joke. Now, we have the power in our own hands. Given that we play by the rules, of course.

Nick and Lins pictures on the nude beach

We have always strongly believed in the power of social media and the advantages that come with it. Since the very beginning of Naked Wanderings, we have been practicing with our own style of censorship. If you follow us on Instagram, you know what that means: You can see that we’re naked, but you don’t see any explicit nudity.

 

Over the years, this has become a part of the Naked Wanderings brand and quite often people tell us that they are also making “Nick and Lins pictures” on the nude beach. Other than being allowed to keep our social media accounts and not end up in Facebook Jail, this strategy also proved to have some other advantages. We have been able to acquire a very genuine readership because our content is just too boring for those who only want to look at naked bodies. It’s also easy to digest for people who are not that familiar with social nudity and you can actually read our blogs at the office without having to fear that your boss will suddenly appear behind you and there’s a penis on your screen.

Does censorship hurt naturism?

We also get comments from people who disagree with our censorship. They tell us that by hiding certain body parts, we’re actually sexualizing them or agreeing that they should be hidden. We can’t argue with that, because there is a lot of truth in this statement. If we preach that nudity is normal and natural, we do kinda contradict ourselves by hiding it.

 

Probably, most of you do realize that this is how social media works and that there isn’t really another option. It’s either censoring or no social media at all. If we want to use social platforms, we got to follow their standards. Period.

 

But then we wondered: “What if social media dropped their ban on non-sexual nudity tomorrow, would we change our style of pictures and videos?”. We probably would not. We would definitely be less careful and if we happen to take a cool picture that has a nipple or half a penis in it, it would get a spot on our Instagram page. But we wouldn’t start posting full-frontal nudity just like that. Just because it’s possible.

How to make naturism more accepted?

This is the question that has been keeping us busy for years. Many promotors of naturism are going for the “constant exposure to non-sexual nudity” strategy. We understand the idea, but we wonder to which degree this actually works. If you post a full-frontal nude picture on Twitter (the only mainstream social medium that actually allows this), how many people will think “Hey, that looks cool, I want to do that too!”?

 

We want those who see our pictures or watch our videos to think just that and we believe that a less explicit strategy might work much better. You can see that we are doing cool things, that we visit beautiful places, that we are having lots of fun, that we have a positive vibe, and, oh yeah, that we’re not wearing clothes in all that.

 

It’s all about relatability. For non-naturists, it’s quite hard to relate to a full-frontal naked person, because the nudity is the most prominent part. If this non-naturist sees our pictures, he or she may not relate to our nudity, but might be inspired by our joy, by our nomadic lifestyle, or by all those wonderful places. And meanwhile, they also learn a thing or two about our life as a naturist.

 

 

The Naked Wanderings Vlog

On our blog, naturism and naturist destinations have always been the main focus point. When we started vlogging earlier this year, we decided to expand our scope and also show the cool non-naked things that we do. If someone searches on youtube for a video about the Spanish city Alicante, for example, our video might appear on their screen. If they watch it, they’ll get to see some of the highlights of this beautiful place, and they’ll also see that we’re having a really good time at a nearby naturist resort.

 

With this video (and many of the others we’ve been making), we create the opportunity to show someone what a naturist resort really looks like without them even searching for it. And we believe that this can only be done by gently introducing the topic and by not exposing them directly to explicit nudity.

 

Will this strategy work? It’s way too early to say, but we believe that it’s worth a shot. Those viewers of the Alicante video may not immediately book a naturist vacation, but at least they get an idea of what a naturist place looks like on the inside. At least they get to see that it’s not something weird or creepy, but actually quite normal and pretty fun.

 

 

Travel vloggers going nude

We spend a lot of time on YouTube and we follow a lot of travel vloggers to get inspiration for our own journeys (and to steal some ideas for our own vlogs). During the last month, we’ve seen two of our favorite travel vloggers going to a nude beach: Travel Beans and Kinging-It. Both happen to be young couples from the UK.

 

This is not all that unique, lots of bloggers and vloggers figured out that tag lines like “I went to the nude beach for the first time” are an easy way to attract a lot of attention. Nudity sells and in many cases this is the only reason why they create a video or blog post like that. But that doesn’t seem the case for the above two. They had a genuine interest in going to a nude beach and most importantly, they talk about their expectations and experience in a very honest way.

 

Both the Travel Beans and Kinging-It have about 100 000 subscribers. Added together, their nude beach videos have already been watched more than 400 000 times. Since none of their previous videos have anything to do with naturism or nudity, we expect that the large majority of their audience probably aren’t naturists. We’re talking about many thousands of non-naturists who’ve now seen the first nude beach experience of someone they trust, like, and maybe even admire.

 

 

Will vloggers inspire the world to get naked?

One of the reasons why naturism is often still considered something obscure is because many naturists don’t like to talk about it. At least not to their friends, colleagues, or relatives. When we became naturists, we didn’t know a single other naturist. We also kept this newly found joy a secret for more than two years because we thought that if nobody else who we know is doing this, they’ll probably think it’s very weird.

 

But the more we started talking about it, the more people we knew told us that they also visited nude beaches, nude spas, or nudist resorts. Especially when we started our blog and appeared in newspapers, more and more people who we’ve known for a long time appeared to be naturists as well.

 

These are people who we love and respect for many reasons, and if we had known that they were also naturists when we took our first steps into the spa, we would have been much more confident. Openly talking about naturism is definitely the way forward, and vloggers can do this on a very large scale. The 130 000 subscribers to the Travel Beans channel like Alex and Emma for a variety of reasons. And now the couple has shown them what’s it like to go to a nude beach. That it’s not just okay, but actually fun and something they’ll probably do more often.

 

What would happen if more travel vloggers followed in their footsteps? If they would all go to a nude beach or a naturist resort and honestly talk about their experiences? Wouldn’t that be a great step towards normalizing naturism? Or do you think that we should just put full frontal naked pictures on Twitter?

 
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17 thoughts on “Will Vloggers Inspire the World to Get Naked?”

  1. Excellent piece, Nick and Lins. Think your approach to vlogging and nudity is spot on to debunk negative perceptions in a cool, funny and interesting way. You’re unique and world leaders. Please keep it going. We love it !

    Reply
    • Well said. I find the photos, in particular, funny & creative. The most important visuals are your wonderful smiles, which clearly convey the message that naturism is fun.

      Reply
      • Thanks a lot Colin and Robert! This has been our goal since the very beginning, to take the weight off the term “naturism” and show the world that it’s actually something fun, something that everyone should try at least once in their lives.

        Reply
  2. I so love your thoughtful and self-effacing approach to naturism. You are some of the best thought leaders around getting more people involved, and you do a great job. In particular, your realistic approach to social media is what will win the day for us. When the world is ready for full frontal, that’s when to start.

    Reply
  3. I suspect that most of your audience are dedicated nudists but many other readers may be newbies or curious fence sitters: thinking about it but are undecided or don’t yet have the courage. I’m sure your blog helps nudge some into giving it a try.

    That said, I think celebs who pose nude for magazines or travel writers who give nudism a try, have a greater chance to win more people to the lifestyle.

    Reply
    • I have a different viewpoint on celebs posing nude for the media. It isn’t about always about naturism but about their image. It is more about promoting sexuality. The narrative rarely naturism.
      On the rare occasion a celeb does pose nude to promote body positivity such as when pregnant or after child birth.
      Most of the time though it is to reinforce nudity with sexuality rather than a lifestyle which isn’t the message naturism needs.

      Reply
  4. I feel like bloggers are definitely inspiring younger generations to embrace naturist lifestyles. It’s done it for me ! I feel like when someone like you guys desexualize being naked it inspires people!

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  5. Your point about avoiding “explicit”/full-frontal nudity in your pictures being important as outreach to those who don’t yet consider themselves naturists – regardless of social media censorship/rules considerations – is a good one. It made me think about how my own perspective on this has shifted as I journeyed from being very much a non-naturist, to a reluctant one, to finally a contented one.

    I first came across your site when I was just starting to learn what naturism is. I’d first read about it on Wikipedia (how I ended up at the “Naturism” article is a long story!), which gave me a bit more perspective on the issue than the stereotypes I had previously believed; but many of the pictures there didn’t do as much to dispel those stereotypes as the people in them might’ve hoped. They tended to feature groups of young, ebullient people proudly “showing off” on the nude beach, at World Naked Bike Rides, etc. in all their full-frontal glory. Nothing with particularly sexual implications of course, but they came across (to me at the time) like a bunch of exhibitionists who were just a bit *too* excited to get the whole world staring at their boy/girl bits. (Especially with many of them being shaved/waxed “down there” to some degree or other, a practice I was not previously familiar with and which struck me at the time as rather vain. I still can’t say I’m a fan of it but I now realize that many naturists have entirely practical and innocent reasons for choosing it.) Many of the settings seemed to be more activist or “making a point” than “relaxing in nature”. My takeaway from the experience was that while I had (at that point) come to accept the idea that non-sexual social nudity was possible and could be a good thing in the right context, this organized “nudist/naturist” world seemed to have the wrong idea.

    I’m glad I stuck with it and followed some of the sourcing links instead of just trusting Wikipedia’s presentation of the issue. Those primary sources did a *far* better job explaining the real motivations and spirit behind naturism. When I found my way to your site, I found it deeply refreshing and eye-opening: here were two people who enjoyed the naturist life with gusto and contentment, yet didn’t feel some compulsive need to proudly show off their bits to the world. It was a window into real naturist life that I, as a (then) non-naturist, could appreciate without being put off by it. The fact that the “censorship” was done by yourselves in the moment through clearly thoughtful movements or environmental placements, rather than digitally added after the fact like a censor cleaning up someone else’s scandalous photo, also made a positive impression on me as a non-naturist.

    What’s interesting is how my perspective has changed since then as I’ve come to embrace naturist convictions for myself. After reading many other great naturist stories and seeing lots of candid, “clean”, non-exhibitionist depictions of people engaging in naturism (some of those censored, some not), my stereotypes were eventually put to rest and I came to accept that my own thoughts were indeed now aligned with what would be considered “naturist”. Ironically, it was that shift in my own heart that caused me to look at censored vs. uncensored naturist pictures in a different way. Whereas before I was relieved to see “sensitive bits” hidden so I could focus on the message instead of a “gut reaction” to a sight I’d been “trained” to see as offensive, now as a naturist it’s the censored pictures that jar me as “unnatural”. I was constantly aware of how contrived and awkward they were, and how they seemed to reinforce the perception that these parts were something to be ashamed of. I have the same negative reaction now when I see Hollywood movies “shooting around” certain body parts when depicting non-sexual nudity (or wearing unrealistic undergarments under pajamas, etc. to avoid showing nipple outlines); it feels contrived, stupid, and actually offensive in a way I was surprised to feel.

    So I think you hit the nail on the head when you talk about how pictures with “sensitive bits” hidden can be great for opening the door to non-naturists – however much they may conversely bother the sensibilities of fellow naturists. 🙂

    Your current website header picture – the one with you two strolling down the beach – does an excellent job satisfying both constituencies without compromising either. The context makes it natural, uncontrived and lovely to frame you from behind, which avoids showing “sensitive bits” to those who aren’t ready for them, and yet it is clear that you are unashamed and at peace amongst fellow naturists at the beach. Every time I see it, it captures my imagination with the feeling of “you are there” and a taste of the freedom you’re enjoying. 🙂

    Reply
    • Thanks a lot for sharing your story! We started Naked Wanderings back in the day because we found the information about naturism that we found online did not resemble our own experiences. And the full-frontal nude pictures were part of that. It almost made it seem that as a naturist, you have to be fine with posing nude in front of the camera and have that picture travel around the internet. We wanted to counter that idea. Of course, we needed some nudity because otherwise we would be completely missing the point, but we never thought that explicit nudity was a necessity and over the years we even learned that it can work counterproductive (as you explained so very well).

      Reply
  6. You guys alone influenced and opened the curiosity to many thousands of people from what many probably already are enjoying the nudist life.
    What you do and all your work is very important to spread the word out there.
    Since you and many more known nudists to the community posted all over social media, many famous and journalists are getting more open about being nudists or giving it a try, what I want to say is that thanks to all your wonderful work the curiosity opened up on the higher class of the society and now because of their postings more peoples curiosity is opening up.
    Slowly with baby steps we will be seeing more and more people joining and enjoying the nudist lifestyle.
    And, no … a full frontal naked picture won’t make you or anyone else a better nudist.

    Reply
  7. I think social media will help to promote naturism; in fact, it already is. I don’t particularly like the label “naturist” and its derivatives, I simply prefer to explain it as my preference to be nude. I’ve posted pictures on Facebook before and had positive responses. I posted one of me standing on a beach, to show my bodyshape from a few years earlier whilst saying I wanted to get back to that shape after putting some weight on. Obviously, the photo had to be censored for Facebook, but I kept the censoring to a minimum. I prefer to remove my pubic hair and be completely smooth around that area, and I didn’t bother covering that bare skin up, I literally just covered only my penis with a black line the same size as it. Facebook allowed that post to stay up. It got a lot of likes and some complementary comments. No one seemed at all bothered about seeing the rest of my naked body. Some commented that they wished they had the confidence to go to a nude beach. The surprising thing was that most of the comments about wishing they could go to a nude beach were from women. The comments by my male friends were mainly and typically jokes about the “unnecessary” length of the black line hiding my penis. 😀

    I have mentioned elsewhere that I believe one way to attract more people to going nude or to at least accept those who do, is to normalise it. This is something I have done for years in real life by going nude on all beaches. I don’t go shoving in people’s faces, but I don’t go out of my way to hide it, and I’ve never really had any bad reactions to that.

    I think that showing non-sexual full-frontal nudity on social media would have a similar effect. People need to get used to it and the only they’re going to get used to it is to see regularly. Twitter of course already allows nudity (even pornographic nudity) – so there’s a social media platform you can already post uncensored nude images to.

    The whole issue some people have with nudity is ludicrous. Let’s be honest, it’s only about the genitals. We see “textile” people on beaches, who are to all intents and purposes nude. The only thing that separates them from being fully nude is a small amount of material covering their penis or vulva. And sometimes women wear bikini bottoms so skimpy you can see most of their vulva anyway. But they aren’t considered to be nude.

    One day, at a regular beach I go to I was walking along the sand (nude of course) and came across a young woman who was sunbathing topless. I would have continued past, but she spoke to me, and we had a fairly long conversation. I think she was quite fascinated by me being nude. The only garment she was wearing was a tiny gold G-string. After we had talked for a while and she stood up to walk a few yards to paddle in the sea, I felt I could ask and did ask her why she bothered with the bottom. She said she couldn’t go nude, “I’m not a nudist!” I pointed out to her that she was pretty close to nude. She couldn’t see that.

    Just on the point about putting nudity out there for people to see and get used to, I recall one day being at the same beach. Around one side of a rocky outcrop there was a large pool left by the tide. One side of the pool came right up to the rocks. I was chilling against the rocks with my feet in the pool. Nude as usual. A fully clothed couple walked up to the other side of the pool, they were barefooted, and started to paddle about 30ft from me. I was kind of sitting against the rocks, so they didn’t notice at first that I was nude. I decided to get into the water fully and stood up to walk into the pool to where it was waist deep. It was then that they noticed I was nude. Their reaction was to start whispering something to each other and giggling. They kept watching me. Then, after a bit more whispering and giggling, they got out of the pool, took their clothes off and got back in the pool where they spent about 15 minutes splashing around in the nude. Eventually they got dressed and continued walking along the beach. As they passed me, they smiled and waved. I think I had introduced then to naturism that day!

    So, my point is, that (for want of a better word) exposing people to non-sexual nudity, both in person and on social media will certainly help to promote recreational nudity as normal, and that will lead to more people doing it and those who don’t at least becoming more accepting and tolerant of those who do. But censorship is a negative thing.

    Reply
    • Thanks a lot for sharing your stories! We don’t think that they prove the fact that exposing people to non-sexual nudity will help them appreciate it more, but rather that people, in general, are not all that shocked by nudity as many naturists tend to think (another fact that we try to keep telling people whenever we get the chance…).

      In the end, it’s much more about being open about it than about shoving nudity into people’s faces. Since we started our youtube channel and are filming a lot in public (clothed) places, we have a lot of explaining to do. Everyone always asks why we are filming, etc. When we tell them that we have a naturist travel channel, many of them are interested.

      Reply
      • No problem. I think I said in the second paragraph of my first comment, that I don’t go shoving it in peoples faces. It’s a little more subtle than that but is actually being open about it by being nude where perhaps it isn’t expected.

        You might be right that people are not that shocked by nudity, but they’re still not used to seeing it out in the open. The more they do, the more they get used to it. I’ve experienced it many times, so I know it does.

        When you’re filming in public (clothed) places, are you nude?

        Reply
        • We adjust to the places where we are. So we film clothed in clothed places, but we will also always be naked when we are filming in naturist places.

          Reply

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