There’s nowhere better to embrace your nakedness than the UK’s selection of nudist beaches.
How often do you just hang out naked? Maybe padding around your flat in the nude is normal to you, a pro in spending time in your own skin. Maybe you share your home with housemates and live for those elusive moments of quiet when everyone’s out and you have the place to yourself, delighting in the novelty of swanning around without a stitch on like you bloody own the place. Or maybe, being naked really isn’t your thing: it can feel exposing, vulnerable or too much to take in, even if you’re alone.
Well, in the spirit of embracing ourselves just as we are, we’re stripping back and stripping off to get comfortable with our bodies in the purist sense. As far as we’re concerned, there’s nothing more beautiful than the female form and if you feel like getting more in touch with yours, we’ve found a very freeing way to do it.
Although Britain might not be the first place you think of for a beach holiday, the UK is actually home to a wealth of sandy dunes and dramatic coastlines that would put the Maldives to shame (well, kind of). What’s more, a surprising number of them are nudist friendly, making them the perfect place to get your kit off in a setting designed for it: after all, walking down Oxford Street starkers could get you in a spot of bother.
We’ve picked five of our favourites from a selection of locations across the country and think heading to one is not only a great excuse for a staycation, but could be a new way to reconnect with yourself.
Studland Bay, Dorset
This spectacular coastline is full of dramatic rock faces and sandy dunes, perfect for an afternoon stroll in the buff. This Dorset naturist hot spot is one of the most popular in the country according to the National Trust.
Brighton Beach, East Sussex
If there was ever to be a city with a nudist beach, it would be Brighton. This progressive, flamboyant and utterly free pocket of England is known for its thriving LGBTQ+ community and encourages all those who visit to embrace their true selves. So, it doesn’t surprise us that it’s actually home to the first nudist beach in the UK, opening in 1980.
Cleats Shore, Isle of Arran
Scotland’s chilly conditions might not sound the most appealing when considering places to go for a clothe-less roam, but Cleats Shore’s spotless sands might be enough to change your mind.
Porthzennor Cove, Cornwall
The rocks at Porthzennor Cove not only contribute to the striking coast line, but they also shelter the beach from harsh south-west winds. Maybe that’s why this sandy spot has become an unofficial naturist beach, protecting those who embrace going au naturale there from getting too nippy.
Budleigh Salterton, Devon
Devon’s Budleigh Salterton beach is characterised by its two kilometers of pebbles that acts as the mouth of the famous Jurassic Coast. Although pretty to look at, make sure you don’t slip as we can’t imagine they’d be the softest landing spot while in the nude. The area has a fascinating history, with climbing sandstone formations that date back to the Triassic period, about 240 million years ago. Because of this, and the beaches three cafes, it tends to be a pretty popular spot with tourists - but don’t worry, the far western area is one of Devon’s most popular spots for naturists too.
For one day only on Thursday 20 September, Gemma Cairney has taken over stylist.co.uk and transformed it into her very own Express Yourself platform – a digital initiative which aims to inspire us, challenge us and encourage us to explore our creative sides.
For similarly inspiring content, check out Stylist’s September Shake Up initiative here.
Images: Getty / Darius Bashar