Naked Pictures Can Kind Of Screw You Up

girl in towel pressured to take naked pictures

Don’t get pressured into it, girl! | Source: Shutterstock

Years ago, I used to help direct photo shoots for a teen magazine based in Los Angeles. It was a ton of fun to help suggest props or different poses for the models, the guy models were always super cute, and there was always amazingly yummy food to eat! I almost always knew everyone working on the set, but this one time, we hired a new photographer.

He was young and cute and seemed to really like talking to me during breaks when the models were putting on different outfits. He kept complimenting me on my hair and other things, but when you live near Hollywood, you kind of get used to people saying things just to be nice and learn to not take any of it too seriously. But near the end of shoot, he said he’d love to take pictures of me one day. That was flattering. I was used to helping hire the models–and now he wanted me to be one?! Holy cow.

It didn’t take long for the 19-year-old me to say “Hell yeah!,” but then this photographer told me he wanted to shoot naked pictures of me. Naked pictures?! Like without my clothes? Gulp. At first I almost turned him down flat–I knew taking naked pictures was a bad idea–but then I thought about the fact that he seemed to know a lot of people that I knew and trusted in the industry, and so I kept making excuses for why this must be okay . . . even though my gut was telling me it was all wrong.

We exchanged numbers and said we’d set up a date to do the photo shoot, but by the time I drove home, I knew I’d never actually take my clothes off for this dude. He did call–over and over for about a week, but I never called him back, and I feel good about that to this day. I mean, why was he calling so many times? Why was he so desperate to photograph me? Weren’t there other girls–real models, even–who he could photograph? Looking back, I feel like I seriously dodged a bullet.

kate moss didn't want to take topless or naked pictures

Kate never wanted to take topless pics! | Source: Lia Toby/

I hadn’t thought about all of that in a long time until I read what Supermodel Kate Moss told Vanity Fair about her topless modeling days back in the ’90s. Kate said she never wanted to take naked pictures: “But they were like ‘If you don’t do it, then we’re not going to book you again.’ So I’d lock myself in the toilet and cry and then come out and do it. I never felt very comfortable about it.”

And as for those super sexy Calvin Klein ads she was in with Marky Mark when she was 17 or 18, she says, “It didn’t feel like me at all. I felt really bad about straddling this buff guy. I didn’t like it. I couldn’t get out of bed for two weeks. I thought I was going to die.”

Freaky stuff, and just really sad. Girls, of course you can and should do what you want with your bodies (providing it’s legal and it’s really what you want to do!), but please, please, please listen to your instincts and say no to things and people that make you uncomfortable–whether it’s a professional photographer or some creepo stranger online. No matter what someone else promises you, your own self-worth and happiness are worth much more. I can promise you that.

Would you ever take naked pictures or topless pictures? Have you? Do you understand how some girls who do take these pictures aren’t “easy,” but just afraid to say no? Let’s talk about it in the comments!

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  • Diana

    I have taken naked pics of myself both for personal use and for others, and I’ve never felt bad about it. What you have to remember about “naked pics” is that once you put them out there they could become public. If you’re cool with that, like I am, then what’s the harm?

    Why shouldn’t my boobs be public? What’s the problem with that? The future “negative consequences” are because of sexists who can’t handle women’s bodies being seen in public.

  • ryan

    ok so i passed over all of the reading but i can say this for sure don’t take or send nude anything he/she wants to see show in person. he/she can’t wait they most likly won’t use your everlasting photo for anything good

  • BeckyButton

    I have taken lots of pictures for a guy and I honestly think its perfectly fine and am totally comfortable doing it. Like I don’t understand whats so wrong about showing off your body. I mean its not really degrading because there are such a thing as nudist camps and beaches. Some people just feel comfortable naked and its not offending of harmful to anyone its just a body we all have one.

  • Inga

    Although I understand where many girls here are coming from I think some of the things they are saying about sex adds to the hype of it being a bad act or something dirty. Sex is something that I feel is always frowned down upon. There isn’t anything wrong with sexual desires for another person. Things like naked pictures and stripping on webcam is something that can keep a long distance relationship going. It is a way to be intimate far away. I don’t think girls who do these things should be regarded as less of a human being or branded with the name “slut”. I don’t think that is right. I think everyone has the right to explore themselves and let others(who they of course trust and are comfortable with) explore them. It doesn’t have to be dirty. It is beautiful to get to know someone on that level. You share a certain connection and for a duration of the act you are one. And on top of everything it can feel good. The important thing is how it makes you feel. If you feel sexy after sending a bf or partner a picture than continue feeling sexy! Don’t let someone bring you down. But like other girls have said, if you feel wrong about it from the stuff and your gut is tied up in knots and you have to spend a lot of time trying to convince yourself to do something, you shouldn’t be doing it. The people who really care about you will respect your decisions no matter what they are… I too am one of those girls who sent a picture to the wrong person and had classmates of mine find out about it… and it sucked. It really did and at a school like mine I could have been suspended . I felt betrayed by the guy, but it was a learning experience. It made me more cautious in my choice of men. It also was a wake up call that unfortunate things happen to people. In this day and age it is a lot harder to keep anything private. The important thing is too be careful and be true to you. Everyone figures themselves somehow, and sometimes unless you try it you might not know if you like it or are ok with it… But sometimes you should try things with just yourself and see how they make you feel and if you feel comfortable and find someone special try it with them. And if something happens just remember we are all human, everyone makes mistakes while learning about themselves and about life.

  • Bloofan1995

    truthfull i think all naked pictures are bad, for a job or for even a boyfriend. My friend sent naked pictures to her boyfriend a couple years back, then totally forgot about them, now they’re being posted all around school! Turns out that her jerk of a boyfriend sent them to his friend, and his friend has been sending them to everyone. Another one of my friends accidentally posted a video of herself on facebook without meaning to. Then another one of my friends sent a picture of herself to her boyfriend a long time ago, we don’t know if the pictures are still there or not, but the rumors are still flying around. Also me….I sent one to a boyfriend last year, it was a long distance relationship, i live in texas, he’s in illinois, and we really loved each other so i sent him one, to this day i have no idea if those photos are still there or not and the very thought sickens me. Photos, and videos are very bad, they can always come back to haunt you….

  • Mrs. Styles

    I’ve never wanted to take topless pics… That is only something I’d do for my boyfriend…

  • CerebralComa

    I understand where this post is coming from but… It really feels like it is shaming women who choose to take naked photographs.
    Firstly, let’s talk about the female body.In our society, the female body is oversexualized because people view women as sexual objects rather than real people. Women are told they have to cover themselves up or else men won’t be able to control themselves and will violate them (Many rape cases are won by the perpetrator this way. They say the way the women were dressed implied they were “asking for it”, and the rapists couldn’t help themselves.) The fact of the matter is, there is nothing wrong with nudity or the female body. Women are bad to feel bad about their body and showing their body, so taking a topless photo makes them look “bad” or “dirty”. However, if a man takes a topless photo, it’s no big deal. Men can go topless in public if they want to. They way people treat the female body and female nudity is fundamentally wrong.
    Secondly, I hate the title of this post. Taking nude photographs doesn’t screw you up. Many women take artistic nude photos of themselves to boost their self esteem. The naked body is beautiful and should be embraced, not something we think is dirty, and horrible, and shameful. It’s not being nude in front of a camera that screws up you, it’s people forcing or coercing you into doing things you are not comfortable with. This blog really victim blames, saying that females should regret taking nude photos of themselves. But there are three realities here: 1) There is no harm in wanting to take nude photos of yourself. 2) It is wrong for people to try and force you into doing something you are uncomfortable with. 3) If you give a photo to someone and they use it in a way that you do not want, it is not your fault. It is THEIR fault for betraying your trust.

  • Talia

    Ahh Albany, I’m sorry those guys messed with your trust like that 🙁 That’s why it’s so tough nowadays, because these pictures last forever, even after YOU delete it.

    I’ve taken SUGGESTIVE photos of myself, but never anything that could be used against me. It’s sad, but I’ve seen teens get charged with child porn for sending ‘nudes’ of themselves, and because of that I know it’s not safe.

    If someone asks, we just have to resist the urge to please them! Even if it seems fun and innocent to take pictures, it’s not always that simple.

  • Lyla

    I very recently met an Italian guy (I’m British) on the internet who’s the same age as me. He’s really lovely, cute, sweet, caring and incredibly charming (not to mention very attractive). I like him and he says he likes me. However he’s asked for a topless picture and he wanted me to strip for him on webcam. I’d never done that before but I was too scared to say no so I did it. I’ve made a porn video for him to now (I haven’t sent it). Whenever he asked me to do something, I’d say no the first time and he’d get upset, saying “you don’t like me back” etc. Then I’d do it and he’d just ask for more. I have a very important time coming up – I’ve applied for some universities and conservatoires to study music so I have lots of auditions and interviews. So of course I need to be confident and positive, because I know I AM good enough to study at any place I’ve applied to. And although (to my knowledge) this guy hasn’t distributed my picture, I’m worrying about it a lot. I know he’s a real 17 Y/O guy and he promises he likes me and he won’t show my pictures. He sent me a sexy picture of him that he asked for me to keep for myself so I think he understands. But my picture’s out there now. If I send him this video that’s out there too. Because we live in different countries, it would be harder to control any problems. I wish I’d thought about it a little more, even though I do believe it is fine and he’s trustworthy. But short of going to Rome and smashing up his laptop it’s irreversible. Seriously, I wouldn’t recommend it, just because of the worry it can cause afterwards.

    • SmallFry123

      Men that love women would never ask for such pictures. Men should only love women as they are and they only ask because they can. Once you gave into this guy, he will just keep asking for more until he leaves you and does it to another girl. Save yourself for the man you want to marry. I was in the same situation, even sending naked photos of myself and I regret it. He even left me also and I was mortified. Now I learned that he can get arrested for having them or posting them once he turns 18. Seriously, men that only love women for sexual pleasures or to get off on are not worth it. Find a man that won’t ever use you for just sex and will always love you and know your beautiful without taking suggestive photos or stripping for him nonstop.

      • SmallFry123

        You never need a man to tell you your beautiful, your beautiful just how you are and you never need a man’s approval. And his opinion. Never let him tell you what to do.

  • Albany

    I did it TWICE. & I really really regret it like I will never do it again, the firat guy I sent them too was my first love & he told all his friends when we broke up. & the second guy I sent them too was my second love & that one I regret the most cuz he threatened to put it on Facebook wen we broke up, he was super pissed that I dumped him & he told everyone on Facebook & showed his friends. So my advice is no matter how much u love that person, NEVER EVER SEND THEM NUDES OR MAKE PORN VIDEOS NOTHING. U WILL REGRET IT EVERYTHING HAS A CONSEQUENCE!!!!!!