Your body is beautiful, and you should show it off if you want to. I get it.
When we feel good about ourselves, we want other people to know about it. When we're feeling particularly hot, we want the person we're hooking up with to see it. And if we're not with them in person, this usually comes in the form of a nude. It makes total sense, right?
Listen, nudes are fun and definitely an adrenaline rush, but they are also dangerous. Before I send a naked pic, I always ask myself, "How would I feel if the guy showed this to all of his friends?" (likely to happen) and "How would I feel if this picture got leaked out into the world?" (This is less likely, but it could happen.)
Nudes can be a great celebration of sex and body positivity, in which case, I am all for it. But before you do it, just make sure you're sending them to a partner who will be respectful of your photos and who deserves them, OK?
Sorry, had to get that mommy talk out of the way.
Anyway, if you've decided you're ready to send a sexy pic to that dude who is actually worthy a nude, here are some tips for taking the perfect naked picture (because I am a low-key expert and have taken several):
1. Never Show Your Face
It's simple: If you show your face or any identifiable features, the pictures can be traced back to you if your guy turns out to be an *sshole and leaks them.
Just stick with a body shot. Or if you want to show part of your face, cut it off at the mouth. (That's the sexiest part of the face anyway — it's where the pizza and ice cream goes!) If you have any identifiable tattoos, try to hide those as well.
Listen, if you've already decided to send a nude, then it's best not to get overly paranoid about it. But these are just some preliminary safe tips to try to keep you secure, should anything bad happen.
2. Get A Good Angle, But Don't Be Overly Dramatic
Nudes are not a professional modeling shoot. This is going to your boyfriend's or your crush's phone, not the cover of Vogue or Playboy.
If you pose too hard, you might pull a muscle or, even worse, look like you're trying too hard. You're already sending a picture of your naked body, so you don't need to try too much harder than that.
Nudes are the candids of sexy photos, so just find a position where you feel your sexiest and start snapping away.
I personally like taking photos of myself, but propping up your camera and setting an automatic timer works great, too. However, I have big boobs, and I find that holding up the camera myself also lifts my boobs up. (See, it's all trial and error.)
Find your best angles and work with them!
3. Figure Out A Filter
To photoshop or not to photoshop? To filter or not to filter? Those are the questions.
If you want to photoshop your photos — no judgment here at all — then Facetune is an app that will allow you to smooth out your skin and touch up your photos in other ways as well.
However, remember that the person you're sending nudes to is also a person who will most likely be seeing you, or has already seen you, naked in person. Photoshopping too much could end up getting you into an awkward situation if you pretend to be something you're not.
Body positivity is where it's at. I love a selfie that flaunts authenticity — stretch marks, cellulite, one boob bigger than the other, or a love handle. Nudes are a celebration of what you look like, not a false portrayal of whom you'd like to look like for someone else.
So if you're going to send a nude, in my opinion, it should be an accurate one where you're showing your guy how proud you are of your natural bod.
4. Highlight Your Favorite Body Part
If you've got it, flaunt it.
Proud of your boobs? Then show them off in the picture.
If you've got a butt like a Kardashian, then arch your back and push it out.
Most likely, whatever you like most about your own body, your guy will be into also.
5. Find Good Lighting
And that doesn't mean use flash.
Flash will turn your body into a ghost, and your guy will wonder why Casper is trying to sext him at 3 a.m.
Turn on a lamp instead, or keep the lighting dim. Stay away from anything fluorescent because I'm sure you know that isn't flattering on anyone. Have you been in a bathroom with fluorescent lighting before? It's scary.
Once you've taken a photo, there are settings on your camera or phone that should allow you to adjust the lighting from there. Additionally, make sure the brightness on your phone is up all the way, because that will make the picture warmer without having to use flash.
Remember, when it comes to nudes, make sure you're ready, you feel comfortable doing it, and you're sending your (unidentifiable) pictures to someone who's worth it.
Otherwise, have fun, and don't take it too seriously. It's sexting, not supermodel-ing.