Every Beach Needs to Be Clothing Optional and Here’s Why…

Yes this post is my opinion as to why every beach should have a clothing optional section but my reasons for this are probably not what you would think. Follow me and see if you agree. /Cover photo from PeterGreenberg.com

kardash
There is nothing real about the Kardashians yet they are role models to many young women and men.

Nothing about the Kardashian family and their “reality” is real. Yet they are undeniably the hottest thing in Hollywood and are role models (dear God did I just write that?) to countless fans including many young women. Their fashion, their product endorsements and their bodies sell.

While I disagree with a lot about what the Kardashian sisters represent, it’s their bodies that I have the most trouble with and why I wrote this post. I know you’re asking, “What do the Kardashians have to do with promoting access to clothing optional/nude beaches across the U.S.?”

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2007 photo of the girls. Source Instagram and People magazine.

Simply put, the Kardashian girls’ bodies are fake. They are fiction, while the bodies on a clothing optional beach are real. In this time when women and men struggle with body image and being positive about themselves, why would we ever promote the Kardashians or any other Hollywood stars or models as  having normal bodies.

Google Kardashian and plastic surgery and you’ll see their bodies are more fiction than fact. The “look” they are creating is focused on body perfection and sex. Ironically two things you should never see on a nude or clothing optional beach. Yet, as a society we promote them as symbols of what is beautiful or sexy in the world today even though their bodies literally come with a price and set a standard that most women will never achieve nor should they try.

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Haulover Beach in Miami on a busy day. There are few places better to enjoy nude recreation than Haulover.

So why should every beach have a clothing optional section? Because on nude/clothing optional beaches you see real bodies. You see people with all types of body types and ages who are perfect in their own special way. Yes, some people have had “work done.” If you thought it was easy to identify fake breasts while clothed, trust me it is even easier on a topless beach. I’m trying not to judge, but my point is that when you spend time on a nude/clothing optional beach you become part of a shared community. By bearing all to everyone, you see quickly that no one is perfect by Kardashian standards, but perfect they are perfect in their own special way.

Yes you will see lots of different looking people. I always tell people to understand what a nude beach is like, go to a mall or other crowded place and watch the next 100 people who pass you by. Now imagine them naked. That’s it. Some people you would find attractive, others not so much, but that’s not the point. They aren’t there for your viewing pleasure. Just like a community, most people are wonderfully average. And when you do see them naked, you’re all equal. That said, you don’t go to a clothing optional beach to see or be seen. You go because of how it makes you feel when you’re there. Writer Emma Sloley captures the sights of a Croatian nudist resort beautifully in her article, Nudist Always Play Volleyball. Give it a read and you’ll see what I mean.

haulover-beach-scene
A couple enjoys nude sunbathing at Haulover Beach State Park, Bal Harbour Florida. photos by Max Hartshorne. From the website: http://www.gonomad.com/1235-haulover-beach-florida-the-ultimate-nude-beach

Perhaps the most important reason why every beach should have a clothing 0ptional section is so that young adults and children can see their bodies are beautiful just the way they are. They don’t need to be ashamed of how skinny or large they are. They don’t need to worry about their breasts or hips being too big or too small. They don’t need to measure their tummies or thighs. Young men don’t need to be concerned about being too skinny or too weak. They need to see all bodies as beautiful and not imperfect. We need to de-sexualize a woman’s breast and hips and a man’s penis and see them for what they are… skin, bone and muscle. We need to provide women with equal rights to decide when and where they want to shed their clothing and at the very least enjoy the same rights men do.

We all need to see the badges we wear on our bodies that come with age. These are badges of honor. I am always amazed by what I see when I’m on a nude beach. I see the scars from life saving surgeries. I see healed wounds from accidents. I see pregnant women glowing from future motherhood in the sun. I see women who have had mastectomies. I see men with large bellies. I see c-section scars and stretch marks. I see amputations. I see the effects of living a long, wonderful life such as wrinkles and sagging butts, boobs and balls, not to mention muscles and skin. I see birthmarks. I see burns. While it might not all be pretty like the Kardashians, it’s real and this is what we all should appreciate and accept.

haulover-beach
Yes every beach should be clothing optional but I agree every beach also needs signs so that those who don’t want to see, can turnaround. Photo Source: Miami Herald

Equally important is that clothing optional beaches need to be everywhere so that they are easy to find, easy to access and easy to enjoy. Today in the U.S., clothing optional beaches, nudist clubs and nude vacations spots carry an unfair stigma. They are not dens of odd people doing immoral things that children should be kept from. Instead, they are filled with people spending time with their loved ones and friends while enjoying the freedom to be nude and to celebrate the sun without being judged or threatened.

Perhaps most important to why all beaches should have a clothing optional section is access to information. The internet today provides pictures (clothed or naked) of the Kardashians at the click of a button. Anyone can see these images, yet we can’t all go to a clothing optional beach or place and see what real people looks like.

So why am I writing this post today? First off because of women like Chelsea Covington (@gingerbread) and her efforts to bring topless freedom to all women through her actions #freethenipple and her blog: Breasts are healthy. She has been arrested for her belief but continues to change opinions and promote discussion about topless freedom for all women.

Second, because of nudist advocates like Felicity Jones and her efforts to educate not only for topfreedom but positive body image and body acceptance for all. She speaks to young adults and demonstrates all of the positives of today’s nudist/naturism messages. Her blog is youngnaturistamerica.

Third, because of a DM I received from a twitter follower with nice comments about our blog while pointing out how extremely negative body image has become. He mentioned a friend who said she’d love to try nude recreation but was concerned about the look of her labia. Really? What society has done to women and their bodies is unacceptable. Furthermore, it sickens me that their our doctors who will profit from this surgery.

Finally, I’m selfish. I live in the Midwest US by the Great Lakes (Lake Erie) and there are no public, legal, approved clothing optional beaches on the U.S. side of the Great Lakes anywhere. We are an hour from Cleveland and there is no where we can go nude in public on Lake Erie without the risk of breaking the law. My wife and I instead go to Haulover Beach in Miami or Black’s Beach in San Diego. We love it, but wow, what a long way to go to enjoy the sunshine.

Alright, I’m off my soapbox. But before I leave you, I read a beautiful quote from the blog Meandering Naturist about naturism in France. Read and see if you agree.

“France will always be the place where naturism genuinely made sense to me – in a way that I had dreamt it should be – and for that, I am forever grateful to the people who are able to say “a breast is a breast, a penis is a penis, and it appears everyone sports a remarkably similar pair of buttocks!”  Viva la France.

That’s my opinion. What’s yours?

 

 

 

 

16 thoughts on “Every Beach Needs to Be Clothing Optional and Here’s Why…

  1. cb

    Reblogged this on Contrafactual and commented:
    My old time followers will recall my serialized novel “The Nudist War” where the infected tend to be naked for a variety of reasons that should be readily apparent given any amount of thought. I have been dealing with an excess of “life” lately and it sits unfinished.

    That having been said, I am not a naturist or nudist (at least not in public), yet I think that society is too hung up on body image and nudity. I found this article worth sharing.

  2. nudeM

    Reblogged this on Nu et heureux – Naked and Happy and commented:
    I cannot agree more. Actually, I believe ALL beaches should be clothing optional. Wear something or nothing! But you may say that people will be offended by nudity, sure, but nobody obliges them to stare. Nudity should one of the available clothing options. Good read on body shame and “real” people.

  3. The Activist

    Everywhere should have somewhere to relax naked on or in,but maybe it’s the human psyche that’s restrictive too. Many people worry to much about being seen or being caught, whilst if they just relaxed nothing much would happen. There’s so much open countryside and coastline even here in the U.K. that people never even use. The truth is most travel on wheels and drive passed the countryside. So should you strip off don just your walking books and go for a naked hike you’re very unlikely to see anyone 🇬🇧🍃

  4. troynbr2

    Clothing optional section? Why not just optional, period? As a first step, I’d agree. However, that sets up segregation. Ultimately, LIFE should be clothing optional. It’s just another expression of fashion, no different than wearing the latest hot jeans. While we wear some clothing for hygiene and insurance purposes (ie shoes) there is really no need most places.

  5. jochanaan1

    The Powers That Be, aided by many people’s assumptions about nudity and nudism, are fighting hard, hard, to prohibit simple nudity anywhere, even on beaches. They may know, although they deny it even to themselves, that the entire prohibition of nudity rests on just two or three assumptions. Once those assumptions are shown to be false, the whole set of beliefs falls like a row of dominoes. — That’s what we’re fighting.

  6. nudenik

    Nudists are well known for accepting each other as they are and for who they are. Removing clothing and the attached labels they can give us means we are just ourselves in our natural state. We have friends who have those surgery marks, some of them have had a mastectomy or other operations that significantly change their bodies. When we socialise nude with them nobody cares, they’re still the same people we knew before they underwent the surgery. This is part of why we love life as nudists.

  7. David

    I agree with this post. Nudism should be encouraged and we should be permitted to be nude in as many places as possible – and certainly at every beach, at every public pool, at every municipal park. Life is infinitely better when nude.

  8. John Wilson

    Fat-shaming seems to be so newsworthy today, but when I grew up I experienced the invisible bullying called, for lack of a better term, “Thin-shaming”.
    Throughout high school I was 5’9″, and my waistline was less than my inseam length, Mothers would try to get me to eat more than I was comfortable with, friends and acquaintances would tell me to eat faster, so I wouldn’t feel full so soon and would eat more, and my friends would joke about how if I stood sideways I’d disappear, and if I stood on my toes, I might slip through the ground. I’m not thin anymore, my metabolism slowed, and I gained weight. Now the doctor says I should lose 20 Lbs.
    Body shaming works both ways, we just notice one more than the other.

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