Sending nudes used to be such a taboo thing to do—no one talked about it but everyone did it. Then people started realizing sexting was hot, which led to more and more nudes being sent, which led to women getting their nudes leaked on the internet. If you want to send him a picture of that body that you’re oh-so-proud of, by all means, go for it — just make sure to follow these rules first.
Make sure they’re actually on board with it. Most guys would be thrilled to receive a photo of the woman they’re into half or completely undressed. However, it’s still really important to establish consent. Always ask to make sure he’s okay with you sending images like that before you proceed. “If they reply with enthusiasm, you’ve got the green light,” Astroglide’s resident sexologist Jess O’Reilly, Ph.D tells Glamour. “If they say no or sound unsure, respect their boundaries. Sexting can be hot, but there are many other hot activities in which to engage if it’s not your partner’s cup of tea.”
Set your own boundaries. Nude doesn’t have to mean completely naked. Want to send him a photo in your bra only? Don’t feel like you need to do more. Do whatever you feel comfortable doing—you’re in control of this situation. Partially nude photos can actually be way sexier than baring it all anyway. Try a sexy pose in your underwear only or a really cute bathing suit. Leaving more to the imagination sometimes gets guys more excited than the alternative.
Don’t fall prey to manipulation. Before you decide to send him nudes, it’s important to think about why you’re doing it. If it’s because you’re feeling sexy and want to turn him on and build the sexual tension between you, by all means, go for it. If it’s because he’s manipulating you by suggesting that you would send him naked photos if you really liked him or that you should want him to look at you instead of other women on the internet, that’s a serious red flag. You should never be pushed into doing something you’re not 100% on board with doing.
Be prepared for other people to see your goodies. You have a damn good body, so be prepared that your recipient is going to want to show off that photo. If you haven’t met his friends before, just know that the first time you meet them might not be the first time they’ve seen parts of you that you don’t want to be seen. Be prepared for this but also be a good person and don’t share the nudes you receive with others without their permission.
Keep that pretty face out of it. On that note, make sure to keep your face out of it. Send a selfie all you want, send nudes all you want, but for the love of the sexting gods, don’t send your face and nudes in the same shot just in case he turns out to be a douchebag who spreads the picture everywhere or just in case the phone gets into the wrong hands or whatever other horrible tragedy that can occur, just don’t do it. If he can’t respect that rule, then revert back to rule #1 and kick him to the curb.
Stay as anonymous as possible. If your nudes do fall into the wrong hands, you don’t want to be identifiable if at all possible. To make sure of this, turn off your location settings and remove anything from the background that could be traced back to you in particular. In addition to keeping your face out of the photo, you should also make sure to cover up any unique features you have like birthmarks or scars.
Triple check that ‘to’ field. Please, please, please don’t accidentally send your nude photo to your dad or your boss. It’s not something that can be undone. Additionally, make sure you aren’t accidentally uploading to your social media. It’s easier to do than it sounds.
Don’t send nudes to men you don’t know. I would go as far as to say that you shouldn’t send nudes to someone you aren’t already dating or in a relationship with, but sometimes we talk to people online these days for a long time before ever meeting. You may be very close to someone you haven’t met in person yet and feel comfortable sharing nudes. Only you can be the judge of whether or not you truly know someone well enough for this kind of intimacy, but please don’t send nudes to brand new guys. You don’t know them or their motivations and you need to protect yourself.
Also, make sure they’re over the age of consent. I know it seems silly to add this but it’s still worth saying. Anyone who’s under the age of 18 who sends or receives a nude or suggestive image is in violation of the Prosecutorial Remedies and Other Tools to end the Exploitation of Children Today (PROTECT) Act of 2003. This act says it’s “illegal to produce, distribute, receive, or possess with intent to distribute any obscene visual depiction of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct,” so you could end up in some pretty hot water if the person you’re sending your nudes to isn’t old enough to receive them. Hopefully you’re smart enough to be dating a grown man, but if you’re talking to someone online, just make sure you know they’re being honest.
Don’t send nudes under the influence. As most everything goes, sending nudes under the influence is a bad idea. You’re bound to forget all the other remaining rules. Next thing you know, your whole body is in the picture, face and all, and you’ve sent it to your boss and then accidentally uploaded it to Facebook.
Check your lighting and angle. A little bit of advice that’s different than the rest. If you are going to send those nudes, I want you to send your best self! Take photos from above or straight on. Never take a photo from below looking up—everyone has a double chin at this angle. Try for natural light instead of harsh fluorescent light.
Get collateral. I, personally, have sent nudes but I haven’t sent one without receiving one first. Even if I don’t necessarily care about getting a d**k pic, I’ll still make him go through the effort to do it for two reasons. The first is to just make him jump through hoops. The second is because I want something on him should he want to hold my nude over my head. Should you listen to my advice about only sending nudes to men you know, though, this rule wouldn’t really matter.
Use a secure app. If you decide to send him nudes, you should do so through a more secure messaging program. This means avoiding text attachments and instead using encrypted programs like Signal or WhatsApp. Your photos should be secure against hackers this way, but for protection against screenshotting, you’ll need to use something like Privates. There’s even an app called DiscKreet that puts your nudes behind a password that you both have to enter simultaneously in order for them to be viewed.
Most important of all, know that you don’t owe anyone anything. Never feel like you have to send someone nudes. No one should ever feel stuck or feel guilty for not sending nudes. Too many times, I think we go along with things because we feel as if we have to for guys to like us. The right guy won’t pressure you and for the right guy, you probably will want to send sexy messages and pictures. It should all come naturally.
If you don’t want to send nudes, there are always alternatives
Sending nudes isn’t for everyone and if it’s not for you, that’s okay. There are plenty of other ways to get flirty with the guy you like without having to expose yourself in that way to him.
Send him pictures of you still clothed. If he’s into you, he’ll want to see you regardless of what you’re wearing or not wearing. Why not send him a photo of yourself in an outfit that makes you feel really hot? You can pull a sultry pose or just make sure you’re looking ultra sexy but you don’t need to disrobe.
Try sexting him. Words are sometimes more powerful than images anyway. If you don’t want to send him nudes but you’re comfortable typing out some of the things you’d like to do to him, sexting can get you both going even more than the pictures would. Message him the dirtiest things you can think of and see how he responds.
Invite him over instead. Why does he need a picture when he can just come over and see it in person? He won’t need to stare at an image of you when you’re right in front of him to have his way with. If it’s not possible for him to come over right away, make plans to see each other as soon as possible. That will give you both something to look forward to and keep the anticipation high.
Send him pictures of your lingerie. You don’t have to be in it! If you just bought an adorable matching bra and thong set, why not show it off to him? It will encourage him to use his imagination as well, which is always a good thing.
Link him to some other sexy stuff. If you’re not wanting to send him nudes, there’s always the option of linking him to some other sexy stuff you’ve seen online. Whether that’s an adult video, some pictures you saw on Instagram that got you going, or an erotic story that makes you hot. He’ll love it.