by Maura Rhodes
It helps give you that childhood carefree feeling
“Children love to run around with no clothes on,” says Jennifer Huberty, PhD, an associate professor of exercise and sports science at Arizona State University who specializes in women and body image. “They don’t worry about how they look—it’s all about just being. They’re free from feeling there might be something wrong with showing their bodies. Spending time naked is a way to tap into that freedom.”
It may make you more courageous—and not just because you’ve dared to bare it all
“Research has suggested that people who allow themselves to be seen fully, revealing themselves both body and soul, can learn that they are good enough and strong enough to do whatever they want, ”says Carol Landau, PhD, a clinical professor of psychiatry and medicine at the Alpert Medical School of Brown University, who specializes in behavioural medicine, women’s health, and mood management.
It could help you find new things to love about yourself
We’re so used to rushing to get fully clothed—after a shower, say—that we never stop to appreciate our bare bodies, says Landau. When you stop to take a good look at your body, you might notice you have beautifully shaped breasts or flawless, silky skin. “A lot can be said for looking at yourself nude in a mirror and discovering features that are quite lovely but usually hidden,” she says.
It gives you an unencumbered idea of your natural shape
It’s very easy to get hung up on how your clothes fit—or don’t—and blame your body for it. “Clothes often remind us more of what we perceive as physical flaws rather than the so-called imperfections themselves," says Huberty. “Without a waistband to create a muffin top or feel tight against a not-quite-flat belly, we are less restricted in our movements and in our self-perceptions."
The more you’re naked, the more likely you’ll want to be
It may be intuitive, says Huberty, but it’s important to note that the more time you spend in your birthday suit, the better you’ll feel about it. “If I’m naked all day, I won’t be as self-critical and ruminate about it,” she says. “I’m going to get used to my body being that way and become more accepting of it.”