Is a Naked Body or a Partially Clothed Body More Sexual?

SI Cover Model Hannah Davis causing controversy
SI Cover Model Hannah Davis causing controversy

Meet Model Hannah Davis on the cover of the 2015 Sports Illustrated Swim Suit Edition. What do you think? Many are calling this cover photo “pornographic” and “too sexual.” This leads to an interesting question about which is more explicit: a man or woman wearing nothing at all or wearing very little?

After coming back from a week at Orient Beach in St. Maarten, I can honestly say I’ve been around hundreds of naked and partially clothed men and women. I’ll admit when my wife and I first started going to clothing optional beaches and resorts, I would have said that a naked body was more explicit than one covered by swim trunks or bikini. While it wasn’t a physical turn on to see my wife naked, it certainly was mentally. She looked then and still does today stunning with nothing on.

To me this is actually one of the many misconceptions about nude beaches and nudist resorts. Is the human body beautiful? Yes, it can be. Have I seen attractive women and men on a nude beach? Of course, but to be honest, the only times I’ve ever caught myself staring at someone is when they were wearing very little. As I saw at Orient Beach, the only time a couple attracted any attention from others was when they were clothed and often the barely there thongs and bikinis were far more explicit than a naked body.

I do understand that many women are more comfortable wearing a thong or small bikini. My wife included. When she was walking to the beach bar or bathroom, she wore a thong bikini that I bought for her specifically for this trip. Did she attract attention? I loved it but I have no idea if anyone else “noticed” her more in her thong than when she was naked.

This is a topic that is often discussed. So what do you think? This is just my opinion.  Here are several comments/suggestions that have been sent to me. Great thoughts and observations:

From A Naturist’s Lens @ http://skycladtherapy.wordpress.com
I agree with you that nearly nude is far more sexual than nude, especially in the context that one is aware of cloth touching intimately, highlighting that intimacy. Nudity is less so for both the person who would wear next to nothing and the person who sees next to nothing framing the zones of sexuality. Thanks for bringing up the topic. 🙂

From jochanaan1 @ http://jochanaan.wordpress.com
Context and body language are everything. You don’t expect sex in a nudist gathering or even on a nude beach; but you expect at least sensuality in a “strip club” or certain other events. And when we see nudity or near-nudity where we don’t expect it, as on the street, in a workplace, or on church, we don’t know what to expect, so our cultural conditioning starts up and we think sexual thoughts–at least for a moment. But, as many of us have found, what was conditioned in can be conditioned out. 🙂

From naturalian @ http://naturalian.wordpress.com

To me, having on very small garments like thongs or micro bikinis is far more suggestive than being completely naked – it concentrates the eye on the parts that are (just) concealed! That’s why I hate clothed beaches, all those scaps of different cloured cloth detract from the naturalness of the beach!

From Bruce @ http://www.sffb.com
As TA Wyner once said, “When bathing suits get tinier, the eye naturally goes straight to what is still covered. When people are naked, nakedness becomes natural, and eyes go straight to eyes.” The SI cover photo is clearly NOT pornographic. There is nothing sexual happening. The vagina and clitoris are still covered. It’s nothing but a big tease for guys to entice them to buy the mag. Sexy? Yes. Porn? Hell no.

Great points. What do you think?

Orient Beach Observations on St. Maarten/St. Martin

The World Famous Orient Beach by Club Orient, St. Maarten
The World Famous Orient Beach by Club Orient, St. Maarten

My wife and I had a wonderful week on Orient Beach in St. Maarten/St. Martin the last week of February. While the beach is actually several named beaches in one and nearly 2 1/2 miles long, it features perhaps the best known nude/clothing optional beach in the World: Orient Beach by Club Orient.

Orient Beach really isn’t a bare as much as you dare beach… I’d say about 95% of the beach goers on it are naked and enjoying every minute of it, including my wife and me. If you haven’t been, we’d highly recommend putting it on your Nakation Bucket List.

Orient Beach from a rocky point.
Orient Beach from a rocky point.

Knowing that many couples have their first nude beach experience on Orient Beach, I was interested to see the first timers reactions. I collected these tips after watching several first time couples experiences. Some I’m sure will be back again soon. Others perhaps never. I recommend reading on if you haven’t been but are planning a trip to a nude beach with your spouse or are planning on visiting Orient Beach soon.

  • You can’t embarrass a nudist. It was hysterical watching couples (mainly from cruise ships docked in St. Maarten for the day) walk the entire Orient Beach shoreline but somehow never look up at the naked people laying out on chairs, walking by them or skinny dipping in the water. You could tell they were too embarrassed to make eye contact, which gets to my first point. Remember, time on a nude beach is shared time between you and your spouse. Don’t worry about any one else or what they’re doing, because honestly, they don’t care. They’re enjoying the beach, sun and sand in the buff. You can too. Which gets to my next very important point….
  • The only time any one will notice you on a nude beach is when your clothes are on. It’s funny to say but clothing really does identify and define us. You really do notice bikinis and other swimwear but take it all off and you really just look like part of the nude beach crowd. You don’t stand out. A younger couple laid out their towels near my wife and me. They were close enough that I could hear them. They had obviously talked about coming to Orient Beach already because with a smile on their faces, they counted down and together stripped off their bathing suits. I had to laugh ten minutes later when she asked him to go for a swim. He picked up his swimsuit bottoms and then said, “Why bother. No one cares anyways.” Exactly… and off they ran to go skinny dipping.
  • Take a dip and do what you’re comfortable with for the first time. Another couple was walking down the beach in their bathing suits. They got a ways down the beach, sat down on an empty beach chair and shed their suits. Then they went skinny dipping for awhile. They had a blast. When they were done, they dried off and put their suits back on. I never saw them again, but judging by the smiles on their faces when they left, they will remember it for a long time.
  • Take your time. I watched several couples nervously pick a spot on the beach, layout on a beach chair and then slowly over the next few hours remove bikini tops, swimsuit trunks and bikini bottoms. You could see them getting comfortable and enjoying their time together.  Most, but not all were naked by the end of the day. We saw another couple walking in a large group in the morning (all with swimsuits on) and then come back later in the day. She had taken off her top this time. The next time we saw them they had taken everything off and were laying out and enjoying the sun. Remember, there is no rush. It should be a comfortable experience for the two of you.
  • Take a picture and remember it. While there are signs everywhere on Orient Beach reminding us to not take a picture, I honestly recommend otherwise. Take a picture of your spouse or ask someone to take a picture of you both. Your time in the sun will be over too quickly and a memory or picture lasts much longer. Now I’m not telling you to take a picture of everyone on the beach. Absolutely not! I take a picture of my wife naked every time we’re together on a beach. I’m not sending it to friends or sharing it with anyone else. Days, weeks, months and even years later it always brings a smile to my face when I see that picture and think about the memory of being there together.
  • It’s okay to just keep on walking. The majority of the people who ventured down to Orient Beach when we were there wore their swimsuits. They came to see the nude beach and apparently decided it wasn’t for them. That’s okay. It can be very intimidating the first time. We saw one couple make their way down the beach and find a nice spot in the sun. She started to take off her bikini top and her boyfriend/husband stopped her.  With a smile on his face, he said, “I can’t do this. I want to but I just can’t.” She stopped what she was doing and the two walked off hand-in-hand. Honestly, that was some of the best communications I’ve seen in many years.
  • Let no one judge you. So we’ve all had that nightmare of what happens if someone I know sees me naked on the beach? I saw it happen to another couple and later to us.  For the other couple they were walking together on the beach with the waves breaking on their feet. She was topless.  Another completely clothed couple recognized them from their cruise and the woman said, “Wow look at your topless girl.”  I was interested to see if she would cover up. She didn’t. She wasn’t embarrassed. She replied, “I’ve always wanted to do this and I don’t think I’ll be able to get the smile off his face.” Wow, what a great response. We saw them several more times that day and she was topless all day long and yes, I do believe her husband is still smiling now. Which brings us to our experience….
  • What happens on the beach, stays on the beach. So while standing in line for drinks at the Club Orient Beach Bar, I started talking with another couple. I was naked, he was naked and his wife was topless and wearing only a small thong. Eventually we started talking about where we were from and were surprised to find that we live less than five miles from one another. We even have mutual friends.  They were a great couple and we had a blast talking with them later during our vacation. There is an unwritten rule that who you see on the beach, remains nameless when you return home. I’m not sure if we’ll ever see them again, but I’m sure they’ll keep their little secret just as we will too.

I would love to go back to Orient Beach again very soon but it will probably be a while. If you’re planning a trip to St. Maarten/St. Martin, I encourage you to visit and have your own nude beach experience with your spouse. It will be time well spent together.