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Here, 50 women speak candidly about their first sexting experience, how nudes make them feel, and the unspoken rules.
Nudes are not an invention of the digital era — any art museum is proof of that. Neither is dirty talk — just read James Joyce's wildly, er, imaginative letters to his crush. But the Internet sure has encouraged us to take the art of sexting to places our parents could have never imagined.
AIM introduced the concept of cyber-flirting. Chatroulette gamified it. Snapchat pulled off a vanishing act. Leaks like Emily Ratajkowski and Kim Kardashian 's confirmed the realities of slut-shaming. Eggplant emojis provided a shorthand for requests. The AirDropped dick pic epidemic assaulted our inboxes.
And the witty Urban Decay palette offered a cheeky rebuff. Sending nudes is risky business — ask anyone who's ever been the victim of revenge porn, or had a co-worker glance at their phone at the wrong moment. But the research says that one in five adults is willing to chance it.
Alone in their bedrooms — feeling horny, bold, or in need of validation — they take pleasure in trading photos of their most vulnerable selves. We asked women what they feel about nudes, and the answer? A lot. Here, 50 women of all ages from across the country tell us about their experiences sending and receiving naked photos — the uncomfortable, the empowering, and the cautionary.
I only send nudes to partners or people I'm seeing if they are completely unidentifiable no face, tattoos, or marks proving it's me. And that's saying something, because NYC is basically one giant invasive experience. It was disgusting and threatening. Once I found out much later, I was disgusted. I wasn't actually asked for a nude photo until I was My boyfriend at the time wanted to sext, but I wouldn't send him pictures. I was very sheltered. I didn't send any until I was probably The craziest part is that we never met, Skyped, or talked on the phone—I had no way of knowing who he actually was but thought we were in some sort of relationship.
I think back on it and feel really dirty because I'm sure he was a creepy, old pedophile. I had no boobs, so I didn't want to send a picture. I had all my friends over and we were huddled around AIM when he sent a dick pic. That really scared us and probably led to us not doing anything with boys for a while after. You don't want to miss that moment of excitement when they see you naked for the first time.
Now, I just send to the friend group chat. When our boobs look good, we send.
I have ALL the rules. I don't send anything that, if it were to be seen by my family, they could be sure it was me. But I don't care about my face being in photos or people taking screenshots—I'm pretty body proud most of the time when I work hard on angles and sex appeal. We're so close it didn't even phase her. My boyfriend was excited but responded, 'Who took that picture???! There's something incredibly arousing about the idea of them still salivating over my near-naked body.
Once in a great while I'll send a pic with my face too. I trust that my boyfriend would never show anyone.
The older I've gotten, the less I need or care for the self-esteem boost. It's more to make the receiver happy. Honestly, only one guy didn't respond out of like … I even went on dates with some of the guys and they weren't pervy or inappropriate.
Why we send nudes
Of course, there were a ton of filthy responses, too, and I didn't respond to those, but I liked throwing them off and feeling in charge. It made me feel powerful and gave me an ego boost because I knew I could expect a good reaction. Girls who wanted implants would set up a freeand boys would have paid s.
They would give money in exchange for pictures, so we used to hang out, watch movies, and respond to their messages. Been single too long and want affirmation that I've still got it. I love it and it feels right, but the thought of being naked around people still gives me a ton of anxiety. After I'd recovered, I sent a photo of my new vagina to one female friend and a longtime male friend I've hooked up with. Both made me feel so good and said they've never seen a better-looking pussy in all their years of watching porn.
I'll probably just show my friends. Nothing else. Boy, bye.
Sometimes it is, but women can also be really judgy. I sent a pic of my boobs to one chick before we'd met, and she said, 'Is that you? Now I always check with friends before sending. I had a guy send me a picture of a cum-stained paper towel and the lower portion of his genitals after I sent him nudes—and I was not happy or asking for it. Maybe once I become a cougar and am dating young guys just for their looks, I would want that.
He sees them all the time. He texted me back, 'I'm coming. I'll send a pic pretty soon after we've become monogamous. It's just fun.
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And they probably are surprised to get it because I'm pretty uptight otherwise. I've only ever sent to serious boyfriends. I make my waist smaller, my boobs bigger and perkier, and any other small tweaks I can make.
Even though I edit my pictures, I love my body and I think it's something to be proud of, so it does make me feel empowered and sexy. I edit them using the smoothing tool—it helps a ton! Save the Facetune for your fake Instagram life.
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I think it's because I am looking at myself in such a vulnerable position, and then I start to think about all the ways the recipient could potentially judge me. Or I do it in really dim lighting and pretend I'm purposely teasing them with a dark, blurry photo. Motherhood kinda sucks the sexiness out of you for a while. I felt really pressured, so I took one and sent it—my face wasn't in it, thank god—and he sent it around to everyone in my hometown. It was really awful and embarrassing and eventually my parents found out.
Now, I don't send them very often—only if I'm in a committed relationship. His exact words: 'This could be disrespectful, since that's your thing. Then I blocked him in every way possible.
Sexually explicit content
I don't even remember doing it. He showed his entire frat and I avoided parties there for two years. Fucking nightmare. There was a girl in my high school that sent a million to her boyfriend with her leg literally over her head, vag out, and every guy had them on their computers. I'm so scarred from it, I don't think I'll ever send one! That's creepy. I don't even like looking at myself naked, so I definitely don't want someone else to.