Posted by: naturistreview | March 25, 2012

Public Nudity

Girl hands out flyer at the Loveparade. Photo by Pradeur

I’m probably going to get some flak for this but I’m not in favor of public nudity. I know what you’re saying: “but aren’t you a naturist?” Yes, I’m a naturist but naturism doesn’t mean I remove my brain when I remove my clothes.

Nude in public involves many things: laws (intent), context, the situation, and local customs. If you’re nude at let’s say the Bay to Breakers race (sometimes called Bare to Breakers) in San Francisco, it’s okay. The race has a tradition of nudity and the locals understand this. But if you’re nude in Los Angeles and in front of an elementary school, that’s a whole different story. You’d probably be arrested and probably have to register as a sex offender.

So if you’re going to be nude in public research the legality and situation before doing so. Or better yet, don’t, public means exactly that “public.” And since it’s public, you roll the dice of media exposure and police attention.

Dreadfree’s take on public nudity:

“Urban Nudity: What do you say to a naked man?”


When I say “public” I really mean urban, because technically nude beaches are public places. But it all boils down to places were nudity is allowed and places were it’s not allowed.



  1. Reblogged this on home clothes free.

  2. “I’m probably going to get some flak for this…”. I think the same thing every time I write a “Not all nude is good nude” article. However, it seems that most nudists and naturists have the good sense to know when the emperor needs a new suit.

    I originally used “public nudity” in my article, but then went back and changed it to “urban nudity” after considering that all social nudity has a public aspect when we consider that we’re in the presence of others.

    Regardless of the side we take, people have a tendency to develop a form of tunnel vision when it comes to nudity. The common response to “Real Nudist’s” question is, “I’d say hi! What you’re doing is great!”. It may be great in his town. Places have a way of embracing their eccentrics, but to paraphrase a comment at my blog, ambush nudity is disrespectful to the vast majority of most communities that do not feel comfortable in the presence of nudity.

    Did Stephen Gough cause that women on the trail emotional distress? Did she feel threatened? There’s no way to know. We don’t know who how she felt, but it’s a safe bet that if I survived a nude walk on the streets of LA, there’s a good chance that I would alarm someone. Is making a point about nudity worth frightening some poor woman walking her Cockapoo? I say no.

    • Yeah I should have used “urban” too because nude beaches are public.

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