Every time I plug my iPhone into my laptop (which, let’s be real, is every day), my iPhoto library opens and one of the best nudes I’ve ever received is displayed front and center on my screen.
If you have a Mac, you know why this happens.
When you plug your phone into your Mac, iPhoto pops up and gives you the option to import your iPhone pics to your computer. To tempt you, iPhoto will display the photos from your iPhone in chronological order.
I have an iPhone 6 with over 10,000 photos on it, so I have a ton of old pics on my phone. And yet, that spectacular aforementioned nude that I received just a few months ago always manages to accompany my embarrassing drunk selfies from 2015.
I know what this means, but do you know what this means?
It means the nude wasn’t taken recently, and it also means that the nude wasn’t taken for me.
But do I care? Would YOU care? Would the cute 6’2” finance bro you just matched with on Bumble care? Let’s talk about it…
Is It Okay to Send a Nude to Someone That You Originally Took for Someone Else?
Personally speaking, in the aforementioned case, I didn’t care. Like I said, it was a great fucking photo and deserves a spot next to Michelangelo’s “David.” If I were him, I would’ve recycled the nude too.
Plus, he sent it to me before we had met in person, so who was I to be getting territorial about nudes at that point?
SIDE NOTE: In general, I don’t recommend sending nudes to women (or men) you haven’t met IRL yet. This was a special case because I legitimately texted him “show me your dick” (sort of as a joke, but also sort of not). Read more handy tips about this here.
Generally speaking, if some guy I had been seeing for a bit sent me a pic that was clearly old AF, I’d probably be a little meh about it. As my mother used to say, I wouldn’t be mad — just disappointed.
This is also because I almost never recycle nudes, save for some professional ones that are way too epic not to share (and since they’re professional, there’s no pretense that I’ve just taken them for said recipient).
I’m more of a “take nudes in the moment when I’m feeling myself/have great tan lines/just got new lingerie” kind of girl, so I figure the dude I’m talking to can at least do the same.
But after talking to some girls about this whole situation, they alerted me to a bit of a double standard that exists within the whole “send nudes” territory.
“A dude can pretty much take a nude anywhere and it’s a nude, but the art behind the female nude is so much more than that,” says Brogan. “If I had a good nude I might reuse [it].”
She went on to explain that she wouldn’t necessarily be offended upon receiving an old nude, but she’d think the guy was lazy, which is totally fair.
“I feel like it’d be hypocritical for me to say [receiving a recycled nude would offend me] because I send old nudes,” says Charlotte. “But it’s a whole process for girls.”
I can totally appreciate this, because guys tend to be way more down to send a poorly lit, unflattering photo of their hard dick to strangers (just look in any girl’s DMs for affirmation of this generalization.) Girls prefer to wait until they know a guy can be trusted. Once this is established, they make sure to send a photo so good that they wouldn’t mind him sending it to his boys in case he can’t be trusted.
Girls also have to deal with the fact that we’re up against unrealistic body (and face!) standards, and some of us might want to spend an hour applying body bronzer and contorting our body in the mirror until it looks relatively like something posted by our favorite Insta-thot on her private Snapchat channel.
And yes, I know boys have to deal with unrealistic body standards too — but it’s just not on the same level. Talk to me when there’s a female equivalent of the dad bod phenomenon.
I want to let you in on a little secret: you really shouldn’t get so wrapped up in mastering the “perfect” nude, because the majority of guys are going to be happy with whatever they get.
“It’s the thought that counts,” says David. “A person is bearing it all for you and showing it.”
And if you have a feeling he’s not going to be happy with whatever he receives from you? Or, God forbid, you fear he might zoom in on your stubble and laugh about it with his fraternity brothers? Then maybe you should save those sexy ass photos of yourself for someone who deserves them (and yes, this means you will be recycling nudes).
Or, here’s a life hack: just send them to your best girl friend who will know just what to say! Speaking from experience, this tactic has never steered me wrong.
Do Guys Care If You Send Them Recycled Nudes?
Most guys I spoke to shared my opinion about receiving new vs. gently-used nudes.
“Depends on the situation,” says Matt. “If it’s to masturbate to with no special relationship (sic), then no [I wouldn’t care if the nude was old].”
“I’d never be offended [if I received a nude that was originally taken for someone else], but I also would rather not know if I didn’t have to,” said Gerard.
Gerard’s thinking brings me to my next point: maybe just don’t save the nudes! This way, you’ll never have to know if they’re old or not. I honestly don’t know why I saved the aforementioned nude to my phone in the first place — I must have been feeling some type of way.
“With the amount of care that goes into the nudes some girls take, you gotta respect that they save good ones,” says Je. “Plus, you’re never allowed to be mad about a nude — they’re all good.”
In general, men were more accepting of old nudes than women, but some dudes acknowledged that, if given the option, fresh nudes are always preferable.
“[If I knew it was an old nude], it would definitely ruin the appeal for me,” says James. “It should be taken specifically for the recipient.”
This goes doubly if you’re actually in a relationship with someone or headed towards that territory. It’s kind of similar to how you wouldn’t want to wear the lingerie your ex bought you when hanging out with your new boo.
“If you’re just seeing someone casually, who cares,” says Ian. “But if it’s serious, you don’t want to recycle.”
Do Girls Care If You Send Recycled Nudes?
Let me just start with the fact that girls are less likely to want to receive nudes at all. So before worrying about whether your girl cares about you sending her a nude from two months ago, first consider whether she wants a naked picture of you at all.
Assuming the lady in your life does want a sensual selfie from you, there’s a pretty good chance she wants a photo that was taken specifically for her.
“If you’re sending me a nude, you better be thinking about me and not someone else,” says Jess. “That’s like re-gifting.”
Without getting too much into anatomy, I sort of see what Jess is saying. If you’re going to send me a picture of your hard dick, it’d be nice to know that your dick was hard because you were thinking of me. That’s what romance is all about, right?
But similar to the dudes, many ladies realized that it can be hard to capture the perfect shirtless selfie (or pants-less selfie) and they’re appreciative of whatever.
“I wouldn’t be mad about it. I do it because I look good in the pic and want to reuse it,” says Abby. “They probably do the same thing.”
If You’re Recycling Nudes and Want to Keep it on the DL…
Many of the people who I spoke to wondered how they would even figure out that the nude they received was originally meant for someone else. The truth is, they probably never would.
But if you’re a chronic nude-repeater (and no shame if you are), here are some tips to make sure the recipient doesn’t catch on…
1. Screenshot that shit
If you screenshot the photo and send that instead of the original photo, the recipient won’t be able to figure out the time stamp. This will prevent situations like the one I described at the beginning of this piece.
2. Check your hair/tattoos/whatever
If you’re the type of person who’s constantly changing their hair, getting new tattoos, or whatever—always double check that whatever you’re rocking in the photo is similar to what you’ve got going on right now.
Also, not to sound like a dick, but you might also want to evaluate if your body looks the same as it does in that six-month-old photo you’re about to send. Sure, maybe you think your body looked better back then as opposed to now, but why set yourself up for disappointment if/when you get naked for that person IRL?
While it’s not exactly catfishing, it’s certainly veering down that path. If you don’t think your partner would be happy with a photo of what you look like right now, they don’t deserve a photo from you (and you probably shouldn’t hook up with them either).
3. Double-check what you’ve already sent
How awkward would it be if you sent your latest fling the same nude you sent him last week? Yikes. Go into your iMessage photos and check which photos you already sent to be sure you’re not repeating any.
Also, this shouldn’t need to be said, but definitely don’t send a new person any old nudes taken by your ex—especially if you can spot his hairy feet in the background. I’m only warning you because someone I spoke to claimed this happened to them…
Overall, as in all other situations, you do you. 99% of the time the person you’re texting will not notice when these nudes were taken. Even if they did, they should be appreciative that they’re getting nudes in the first place.
“A nude is a nude,” says Andrea. “Appreciate what you get.”
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