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Here’s The Tea On Whether Texting Nudes To Your SO Is Actually Safe

by Ginny Hogan

Is your phone filled with naked photos of yourself? If so, same. I panic whenever my mom asks to check something on it (mostly because of the lack of Hinge notifications, but still). I love taking nudes, and it helps me feel good about my body. There's nothing wrong with sharing these nudes with the world. Still, in today's digital age, it's important to be safe. If you're in a relationship and you actively sext, you may wonder if it's safe to send a nude to a partner, particularly because this nude might be seen by someone else. Perhaps you're so comfortable with your nudes that you'd be happy with anyone seeing them, and if this is the case for you, you have nothing to feel ashamed of. However, if you want your nudes to be seen by only your partner, you might want to know the risks before hitting "send," so I spoke to an expert to get the answers for you.

Texting a nude could be risky because you might accidentally text the wrong person, so it can be helpful to double-check. "Human error means you accidentally hit 'reply all' when you only meant to reply with a nude to your partner," Relationship and etiquette expert April Masini tells Elite Daily. "Now, your private image has gone public. With the internet, it’s hard to know who will wind up seeing something that you’re texting as private." You might not be emailing someone a nude, but I've certainly meant to type in one person's name to send a text and then accidentally pulled up a group thread that they're part of. Even if you trust that your partner would never leak a nude, it can be helpful to double-check who exactly you're sending it to. It's your private photo, and you deserve to be in control of the recipient.


You may also run the risk of your partner sending the nudes to someone else, even by accident. "An innocent problem might involve your partner leaving his or her phone open and his or her kids, parents, colleagues and friends seeing your private image," Masini says. Sending nudes that you've taken yourself grants you autonomy over your own body, and you should absolutely be entitled to take and send them. Still, when there's a chance someone may see your partner's phone, even if neither of you intends for that to happen, you should be aware of the risks. Additionally, sometimes texts pop up on a computer or iPad unexpectedly, and this is something to keep in mind. You can let your partner know that you're about to send nudes so that they make sure no one else is hanging onto their phone. By communicating directly, you have a better chance of ensuring that what was meant to be private stays private.

Additionally, it can be challenging to know exactly how secure different means of communication are. Do you remember when Jennifer Lawrence's nudes got hacked? You may have forgotten, but she probably hasn't. "With the internet, it’s hard to know who will wind up seeing something that you’re texting as private," Masini says. "Typically, someone other than you owns the system you’re using to transmit — whether it’s an app, an email server or your office network server." I convey personal information over all sorts of messaging apps all the time, and if you do the same, it's totally normal. Still, if there's something you absolutely would not want to be made public, it might be worthwhile to use a more secure app, like WhatsApp.

Rich Fury/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Your partner may also deliberately send your nudes to someone else, and this is something to be conscience of. It's important to keep in mind that your current partner might not be your partner forever. While you might trust your partner very much (and I'm certainly not saying that they will do this, it's just a possibility), it's impossible to predict the future. "A less innocent problem is called revenge porn, and it’s what a partner does with your nude texts after you break up," Masini says. "Your partner is angry, vindictive and looking for revenge, so they post your nude images for the public." I'm definitely not suggesting that this will happen to you (it's never happened to me, and I'll be honest, I am not that careful about to whom I send my nudes), but it is possible. You may need to evaluate exactly how much you trust your partner before you send them something you don't want others to see.

Sending nudes may be risky, but it can also be empowering. It's your body, and you're entitled to take photos of it. If you take nudes, I hope you love them — you have every right to. And if you're comfortable with nudes being seen by someone who isn't the person you sent them too, that's amazing. However, if you only want your nudes seen by your partner, it can be helpful to keep the risks in mind before sending them. As long as you exercise caution and have an honest dialogue with your partner, it can be safe to send them nudes. And whether you hit send or not, you should absolutely celebrate your body — IRL and URL.