Kate

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I first got into sex work when I was 18. I started my career as a stripper at Max 2 as a way to help pay for school. I did that for a couple of years but had to stop because I developed breast cancer and needed to take care of it. And let's be real, stripping and cancer don't go well together lol.

Flash forward to my mid 20's. I get an offer, from a friend of mine, to do some payed modeling for an erotic calendar. I jumped on bored and had a blast! I kept doing erotoc modeling as a side gig and it eventually lead to me doing filmed porn. I basically got payed to do intense BDSM sex stuff on camera, and it was awesome! Beating up boys is always a good time for me and I was getting payed to do it lol.

I had to stop filming though because my health once again started to become an issue that kept me from being able to work .

In my late 20's I moved into being an escort. I got into it because someone I know, who is a very well to do hot shot in the business world, needed some arm candy for a charity ball he was going to who could also keep a conversation going and make him look really good. He offered me $200 and I happily agreed. I did this for a while. Sometimes my clients wanted more than just arm candy to make them look good, others just wanted companionship, some just strictly wanted sex, a few actually wanted lessons on how to be better at certain sex acts so I'd teach them. I never had an issue with any of it because I got really lucky and had customers who followed the rules I put down and knew better than to try otherwise. A lot of the guys wanted me to basically be the one in control though (yeah female domme time!) so it really never was an issue. 

Now a days I don't do any sex work professionally any more. I'm still in the kink scene and go to/throw play parties but that's about it. I'm really happy that sex work was a chapter in my life though. It really helped shape me into the person I am today.

To add to this, my family knows that this has been a part of my life and have supported me the entire time. My dad signed me up for self defense classes and taught me how to use certain weapons he got for me, in case anything ever went wrong. My mum would listen while I talked about the fun things I got to do to people. And my sister and brother would be my cheerleaders, and help pump me up and get me excited for events I'd go to. 

Tedi

Words I live by: I am a flawed, hot mess of continual growth, and perfect in all of my imperfection.

If one were to ask me what made me feel sexy a year ago, I would tell most likely say lingerie, dressing up in something strappy, lacey, revealing, and accenting my so-called “assets.” This was based on how I wished to be perceived as sexy rather than actually feeling it.

There was a long time (embarrassingly long -- read: most of my life) when I did not feel sexy unless I had external validation and/or gratification. This meant I dressed up for others in whatever they found pleasing and could not feel a sense of sexiness until they said I fulfilled their needs. I was a shapeshifter. A chameleon. Your “greatest fantasy.” Not being true to my inner self or desires, I was an empty shell, trying to fill a void I did not realize was there.

In sitting with my authentic myself, I began to ask “what do I want?” This seemingly small question shattered my illusion of self and began my really intensive self exploration. It was as if my building had been demolished and I got to build anew, foundation and all. With this, I have had the pleasure of finding my boundaries, my true turn ons and “fuck yes” moments (as well as my “fuck no's”) and have learned that all are valid and should be explored. I have been able to express myself in all its facets- my wildest kinky self indulging in being a masochistic sub, my whimsical self enjoying the play and laughter that comes with appreciating life for its Little moments, loving and sweet, dark and animalistic -- all of it makes up who I am and none of it is for anyone else but me. 

Fast forward to now! I feel most sexy when I am at one with myself. Rooted. This happens in many different forms and depends on my mood, the context, and what feels right in the moment. I am the most empowered when I feel uncaged, unhinged, and unapologetically me. When I feel so, it transfers into loving others in this way: giving wholly, loving ridiculously, and feeling free. 

I feel sexiest and fully in my freedom when completely nude or out in nature. I find excuses to be naked with myself and others. It is important to feel comfortable in my skin and own every curve, freckle, and scar. When worlds collide and I have the pleasure of being in the buff *and* with mother nature, I feel like an unstoppable Goddess. 

Recognizing and doing the work around this has been life changing. I have taken ownership of my life, my desires, and my body. Truly exploring and allowing myself to do so has shown me the depths of me, and I am certain this will grow and change with time -- as I'm sure I have only scratched the surface!

Sean

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Hey, I’m Sean. I like coffee, dancing, roller skating, and most of all committing to bits. I use she/her pronouns and lie within the bi/ pan spectrum. You can be my friend if you like memes. You can be more than a friend if you don’t mind incredibly specific memes in lieu of flirting. 

I suffer from something I like to call “ugly duckling syndrome.” By which I mean it took both myself and society at large a little while to realize that I’m hot. Really fucking hot. So, now that I’m a swan, I really just want to yell it from the rafters. “I’m a swan!! Isn’t that cool! A big white beautiful bird!!” And --  if we’re going to run with this swan metaphor for a bit -- swans can fuck shit up! They’re powerful! They’ll bite you! So in that regard, swanlike is exactly the way I want to wield my hotness. Aggressively.

I made the decision to become aggressively hot about a year ago. I’ve always had just enough self confidence to intimidate people (and low enough self esteem for this fact to baffle me,) so I figured, why not lean into it? 

Like many of us that were socialized female, compulsory heterosexuality did a number on me. Despite having a few close gay friends, it never even occurred to me that I too could be “one of the gays” until I was in college. Even still, once I had decided that I was bisexual, there was the nagging feeling that I might not REALLY be queer. I had never had sex with a lady, I how was I supposed to know I liked it? Was I just convincing myself of my queerness so that I could be special? Didn’t everyone feel that way about boobs? I’m not exaggerating when I say that it took until I had been face to face with a pussy to finally realize the legitimacy of my queerness. I even said “congrats! I’m gay!” to my partner afterwards. Now that I'm no longer constantly questioning the validity of my own feelings, I couldn't care less about what anyone else thinks. I'm gay, and I'll do what I want.   

If you, dear reader, will allow me a tangent for a moment, I do think that a lot more individuals might realize they are attracted to vulvas if we address societies misogynistic view of them as gross. For me personally, I can’t count the amount of times I thought (or even said!) that I would “TOTALLY date another girl, but I don’t think I could ever go down on one.” In my adolescence I was fed so much about how gross eating pussy was. News flash: its not. Let's flip the script. Eating pussy is great 2k19. 

Back to it. What makes me feel sexy. Aggressively hot. Lets go. I’ve taken you on this journey to  say that I am shaping what makes me feel sexy, what I think looks sexy, wholly anew for my fully realized queer identity. For whatever reason (maybe the fact that villains are queer coded? another tangent for another blog,) when I want to look hot and gay, I want to look mean. I want to look put together and confident. I want to look like the barista you breathlessly tell your coworkers about after your coffee break. I want to look like the 70s babe that fucked everybody at studio 54. So that’s what I’ve brought you. Enjoy. 

If you'd like to see more outfits, jokes, and hijinks you can find me on Instagram under @sorenowl.

Jensen

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At the risk of portraying the ever so horny Scorpio stereotype, my fascination with sex, pleasure and the potential of the physical form were carried deep within the strong current of my desires since early childhood. I was five when I experienced my first kinky dream -- a witch had tied my wrists and ankles to a metal operating table and proceeded to lay wiggly, wet worms onto my genitalia. My best friend at the time would facilitate similar encounters using these fake sticky fingers we received around Halloween. Now come to think it, I'm not sure which prompted which -- the dream or the play dates. Regardless, my worlds of arousal were entwined and it felt comforting to have someone to share it with. 

I began to acknowledge that privacy was a component in fulfilling these desires, but I questioned the level of concealment necessary. I knew that it wasn't acceptable to fiddle with certain parts of my body in public but at some point I decided to test the waters. I remember discovering the heaters in my grandparent's pool, the steady stream of warm current. My grandfather was a gardner so the backyard was an oasis of color, shapes, and smells. I'd pretend to admire the surrounding flowers while swimming. Suddenly one would "catch my eye" and I'd move in front of the jet stream, pushing my junk up against it, slightly lifting myself over the side as if to get a closer look.  “oh, what nice flowers! Very nice! Very nice!” I’d announce, as if my appreciation for plant life would somehow distract my family from the obvious stimulation I was enjoying. And although my nana's expression mirrored the effectiveness of my tactics, no one ever said anything. I got to be an exhibitionist whenever it served me and I was quite pleased with myself.

Though I obviously didn’t fully grasp the boundary of privacy and pleasure, it felt only logical that loving myself in such a physical way felt good to do around people who loved me emotionally, who provided a sense of safety. But as I grew, I learned to take advantage of privacy, consider it more seriously, understand it's purpose, and its value. When I was around seven years old, I would arrive home from school to an empty house. I had one hour to myself before my older sibling arrived home to look after me. Every day I’d go straight to my parents bedroom, unearth their “back vibrator," and go to town. Afterwards, I'd make myself ham and cheese roll ups and watch an episode of Little Bear. This daily self-care ritual brought me my first orgasm. It was then that I bestowed a great deal of faith and magic in the large, cumbersome, vibrating wand. 

But orgasming so young was complicated. This part of me that I grew to learn was private, unlocked a shift in consciousness so considerable, it felt wrong keeping it to myself. Once I felt the power of an orgasm, privacy became easier to integrate but it's secrecy is what bothered me. I was desperate to confess. In order to deal with what was happening, I decided to try and recreate a familiar environment. The friend I had first mentioned had moved to a different school, so I set out to find recruitments, people my own age who would share the same curiosities and willingness to explore. Unfortunately for me, my friends were entirely uninterested in the methods I offered. Some of them gave it a go but were quickly unimpressed, confused, or bored even! I felt a sense of failure. It was not just the masturbation, but the many shifting parts of my sexuality that needed a space to feel valid.

Looking back on this, I feel how determined my little self was in finding or building a community that would understand me. In connecting to others also harboring this secret bliss, I'd find the support I needed to continue in good conscious. After all, it was a need I had to fill, not a want I could choose to ignore. And I see how I instinctively viewed sexual expression, exploration, and gratification as a communal process, an opportunity to discover the body with sincerity and enthusiasm, all while in good company. Stimulation was an avenue, a deeper recognition, a discovery, a discussion, an intimacy similar to other active joys, like *play*. Working with Braden on this shoot felt like I reawakened that first impression -- the child wisdom of prioritizing and sharing the active joy, intention, and care I've always known belonged in the manifestation and expression of my sexuality. 

Jensen 

they/them

{deep love to the sluts, queers, femmes, faeries, butches, movers, shakers, makers, clowns, sex workers and activists that have inspired and informed the relationship I have to my body and how it moves through this world}

Josie

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Since sex is my full-time job, it's given that my approach to sexuality is a bit different than others. Sexuality sometimes takes a much more pragmatic approach. 

Some days, I contemplate giving power point presentations in lingerie to clients on the do's and don'ts of sexual hygiene. 

"Do NOT use the same finger to stimulate my vagina and my ass, unhealthy bacteria travels! 1-2-3 REPEAT after me. Switch CONDOMS when you switch partners. Okay, next slide.". 

Other days, the news headlines are fill my email inbox with the consequences of sex work's criminalization in the States- fellow sex workers getting hurt by predators, or getting arrested or assaulted by the police. If it's not explaining the other two, it's navigating the discourse that sexual labor can be both empowering and exploitative unsurprisingly like any other type of labor. It's enough for me to pour a bottle of wine at the end of the day when I think about the complexity of this job.

The heavy stuff aside, there is something wonderful about being a fantasy who embodies the materiality and physicality of cooking and art. For the sake of space, I'll just elaborate on cooking for now. Cooking draws from the five senses- the sound of a garlic sizzling on the pan, the heady smell of a seafood stock, the blossoming caramel on a creme brulee, the hot dance upon the tongue of spicy marinated beef, and softness near the stem of a ripe orange. 

 
Sex should be the same way. We apply the 5 senses to assess the pleasure of a dish, let's bring this approach to sex. I feel sight and touch are usually the senses we engage the most, but why leave out hearing, smell, and taste? For example, hearing. Over the years, I learned I love the sounds of sex- me, my lover, music if there is any, and the cliched creaking of the bed springs. I love hearing how I sound during a particularly amazing orgasm or three, and I love hearing the sound of my lover tease me. So take some time to think about which senses you typically engage during sex, how you engage them, and the ones you engage less. You deserve to make sometime for yourself. You're never too old to learn new tricks as the saying goes. Though if you feel like a sensual exploration would be better with a sensual chef by your side, you know how to reach me :)


Josie Qu
Website: www.josiequ.com
Twitter @meetjosiequ
Instagram: @missjosiequ
TER ID: 320343
P411: P250558
Niteflirt extension: 11483372

T

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My name is T. My relationship with sexiness and feeling attractive is complicated and not something that I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about until the last few years. I grew up in a smallish town in the south and was raised in a very conservative denomination. The combination of that meant that there wasn’t a lot of room or encouragement to put any thought into what I found attractive or sexy about myself. Until maybe the last year or so, I wasn’t even convinced that other people found me attractive.  

Having said all that, I’ve finally been actively putting some thought into what I like about myself and what I find attractive about myself. Sexiness isn’t a thing I had really directed at myself and so I didn’t even know what that looked like when applied to myself until a friend had rephrased it in what makes you feel good and what do you do that you think makes you look attractive. While I don’t think of myself as particularly masculine, a large percentage of the things I enjoy have a dapper gentleman aesthetic. Particularly, a lot of the things that I enjoy doing for myself are slower, more mindful, and occasionally finicky. The ritual of smoking a pipe or shaving with a straight razor makes me slow down and enjoy the moment. The same can be said for dressing in a suit, I love an excuse to get dapper and I know I can pull off a vest or tuxedo well.   

Until recently, I didn’t really associate any of these things with being attractive or sexy. It took a lot of convincing from people close to me for me to realize that other people also found these things attractive and for me to start putting intentional thought into what it was that I liked and thought was physically attractive about myself. To that end, I was convinced to do this photo shoot by so many of those friends telling me that just doing those things would in fact be sexy. And having actually done this shoot now, I’m very appreciative for the positive reinforcement in this direction.

Zipper

DJ1A3648.jpg

I’m Zipper, and I’m a very good boy. Everybody tells me so, especially my mommy, and she knows best. I like to play fetch the ball, and I run really fast, faster than all the other dogs, always. Also, I only snore minimally.

I have two little sisters, but I’m the biggest and the strongest, and they don’t scare me at all. Not even when Bella gets mad because I maybe accidentally tried to steal her dinner. Her growling doesn’t scare me. No, I’m a big boy, not scared of her and her teeth and her very loud growling. I didn’t want her food anyway…

Sometimes we go on walks. I walk the best, though. I’m a very good walker. I hardly ever get tangled in my leash, because I am the smartest at walking. I walk in front of my sisters where I can lead the way and fend off danger, and where others can see my soft coat and my tail held aloft. I am a handsome boy and people should see me. See how handsome I am? Yes. Now scratch my ears. Give me a cookie. Help me onto the couch and I may deign to snuggle with you. I’ll maybe give you a single lick. Only one. I’m a good boy.

Olivia

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Olivia Nicole
non-binary, pansexual and poly enthusiast
ig: @oliviayourlife


A factory sits
Built for one purpose, destined for another
Hardened concrete walls, cold to the touch
Spaces carved out within its hollow frame
One for this, one for that
but never for its own sake

Vines in dust reclaim
breaking and building
strangling what needs to go
nourishing what needs to grow

The structures of the old way
reconfigured
rethought
removed
on and on

for a new life is being made
what it holds we do not know
but it will be

for its own sake



Most of my younger years, I wanted nothing more than to get away. From the divorce, the abuse, the fighting, the pressure, the hyper-conservative religion my family practiced, their control. I didn’t have the words for it then, but all I wanted was my own autonomy. There were some moments of joy but by and large it was barely tolerable. I attempted a half hearted suicide when I was 14. Nothing much changed. I guess I lacked the courage; either to commit to the act or to be honest with my family, friends, and therapist. Although I don’t know if that would have helped either. But then, like so many other times in my life, I was stranded in the middle. The bible says god hates those who are lukewarm in their principles the most. Like I had no core; nothing there but an absence. The bad blood between the various members of my family led to accusations, arguments, and all around bad mouthing. All of which my brother and I were put in the middle of; all of which isolated us from the people who were supposed to care for us and love us. It stranded my brother and I nowhere, and because of our age gap, we had more hostility than solidarity with each other. No foundation, just bad habits and damaging socialization.

Maybe that’s why they clung to church so much. Needed the foundation. For me, being queer (and as I later discovered gender-queer as well) put me in conflict with the literal translations of the King James Bible that I was supposed to adhere to at all cost. Although I didn’t yet know what I believed other than the bible, I could at least see cracks in the foundation of the supposed one true religion. And although I didn’t believe it word for word, my family still did and their stifling rules denied me the space to seek elsewhere. No black nail polish, no cutting my hair, no school dances, no harry potter or goosebumps. No faith, no family, no foundation, just quiet suffocation.

Sexism was always apparent in my world. Being raised as a female meant I was always supposed to be a ‘help-mate,’ a follower, a bearer of children and a faithful subservient wife. There was no hesitation in telling us directly to be subservient or obedient. God, Husband, Father, even Brother. Them, always the Shepard, and I, always the sheep. Anything good I ever did was just me being lucky enough for some of their light to shine on me. There was no self, outside of the ‘sin nature’ and that was the thing you had to drive out.

So I grew up looking to please others, knowing only how to take care of others, and not even recognizing that I was a thing worth caring for. Always oriented around others, for their ends, because I had never been taught to discover my own. In an odd twist, this repressed lil late bloomer got a job in an industry where I translated femininity and sexuality into money. I learned a lot from that experience and it gave me so much freedom, though it has not been without complications or harms. In many ways I came of age sexually through this industry, and it caused me to filter myself through a heterosexual and cis lens while my queer and gender-queer qualities were long left undeveloped. However, it did put me in a position where I had to insist on my priceless worth, because no one else would. And through a lot of practice and mistakes, it became not just a projection, but a lived truth.

All the things I was taught before, what a Proverbs 31 woman was supposed to do, what a ‘good citizen’ was supposed to do, was never meant to serve us. Just make us serve them. So why be ‘good’? In a world designed to keep you subservient good just means enabling your own oppression. I’d rather be bad. So very very bad. We have to discover and re-remember our own foundations. Be our own cores. Learn what is good for us, what is rooted in our actual existence and experiences, our own pleasure and pain, our own expectations and criteria, and not just societal barometers.

Now that I recognize I am a person and therefore I matter, that my hopes, dreams, desires, dislikes, pleasure, boundaries, ideas, words, actions all matter, I recognize that I need to know what those things are. For so long I had no way to process so I just tried to shove pain away and I thought I was coping so well, but really I’ve been carrying. All this time. But when I try to gather my collection of joy, I find my hands are empty and so is my mind. Like the first time someone asks you what you like during sex and you are taken aback, you don’t know what to say, because it’s never been about what you like, so you actually just don’t know.

The wonderful thing is that you are never fixed in one place, we can reorient ourselves to our authentic selves and each other. Things are always shifting and we can always be learning, listening, and growing. Like this factory which has been repurposed for a new creative life, I’ve repurposed my own life, my own self, my own body for myself. And that’s not just okay, it’s a good thing. Self care is community care. I spend most of my time community organizing, and I doubt I’ll ever stop fighting for the liberation of living things or the well being of the Earth, but now I include myself in the list of things worth fighting for.

Our world, our communities, our bodies, our minds, will never be blank slates. The sites of such violence never go back to how they were or how they could have been, but they can be sites of transformation. Sexuality is certain one of those sites, and I am proud of how much of a home I’ve managed to make inside of a space that was once so foreign and frightening to me. The first time I had queer sex, I instantly recognized the danger it presented to the cis/hetero-patriarchy. It was pleasure for pleasure’s sake. There were no scripts, no roles to fulfill, no timelines to follow. It was just what we wanted it, for however long we wanted it. Just us listening to ourselves and each other, because we had long before tuned out the society that called us an abomination.

I have so much in common with this factory, built by the many for their own exploitation so that it may benefit a few that are external to the building itself. Unfinished certainly, rough around the edges at certain points, marks of past times now lacking their context, barb-wire ‘defenses’  like the ones that make me self-isolate under the guise of protection and remind me of the self harm scars that mark my body. As time and nature reclaims and transforms these structures of oppression, I am reclaiming and transforming within the space of who I once was to become everything I need to be.

I am no longer asking who people need me to be and how to get there. I am just being present and being me, because it’s the best thing in this world I can be.

Words to live by

Mollie

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I am a relationship anarchist. I want people to be with me and near me because they truly want to and not because they feel an obligation, and I want to show others the same respect. The transition from monogamy to relationship anarchy has been taking place for a while now - slowly at first, but I feel that I’ve really come into my own the past couple years. I think this transition has helped me to become the best version of myself.

I’m less dependent on other people / more comfortable being alone. At the same time, my relationships are more fulfilling than in my monogamous days. Ridding myself of the need to place expectations and obligations on other people has made me the happiest I’ve ever been. It leaves people to be exactly what they’re capable of being to me and in the amounts they’re able.

I have multiple people who could be called partners who I love in different ways and for different reasons. I have many friends, some of which are so close to me and who I snuggle at such a frequency that it’s hard to know where the line between friends and dating is and whether we’ve crossed it. But the beauty is—and the point is—it just doesn’t matter. When I’m not worried about where I am on some relationship spectrum with someone, I’m more capable of enjoying what it is that we have, regardless of what label might be thrust upon it.

I feel lucky to be surrounded by loving people. People who are kind and respectful. People who are able to have intense conversations without starting a fight. People who love (or really like!) me for me and only ask for the friendship, intimacy, and time that I am capable and willing to give them. People who love to snuggle!

I feel like a rich lady. :)

Bailey Irish

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Hello, world! I am Bailey Irish, a Chicago-based burlesque performer, comedian, & artist. She/Her & They/Them; a bit gender-fluid, but gender is dumb, so who cares! Queer AF, Pansexual AF, monogamous & in a long-term, committed relationship with my best friend & partner, Booker Dano. Cat-mother of 2, taco lover, and all-around goof.

As a burlesque performer (and a female-bodied person in general), there is a lot of pressure to be traditionally “sexy.” But I have rarely fit into that traditional bubble. Fortunately, the Chicago burlesque community is quite a unique little haven for the weird and the wonderful.

Through my burlesque, I have found a part of me that I didn’t know could make me feel sexy. I’m fucking funny. And that’s fucking sexy.

I believe that sexy comes from feeling comfortable in your own skin, and I am the most “me” when I am making people laugh. My comedy is loud, outrageous, and unapologetic (I especially love a good dick joke). And it makes me love being me.

“Half sexy, half WHAAAAT???,” I am always 100% Bailey.

Check me out performing regularly with my burly family, PS…Burlesque, and support my art through my Etsy shop, TheStarvingFartist.

Keep laughing, sexy <3

Abby

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I don’t remember ever being comfortable in my own skin.  My body has always been a paradoxical thing that is both highly desired and fairly repulsive. I have no idea how I’ve wrapped my brain around this contradiction, but it’s something I’ve lived with for as long as I’ve been aware of my body.

Puberty and genetics apparently blessed me with big boobs, curvaceous hips and shapely legs that made women jealous and men libidinous.  I was supposed to be proud of this and use it to my advantage as much as possible.

Part of the strategy of ‘using my physical form to my advantage’ meant that any ‘imperfections’ needed to be concealed.  In the 90’s, when long maxi skirts were all the rage, I was told that I couldn’t wear them because they showed off my ‘saddlebags’ (newsflash, I did NOT have saddlebags). My arms looked okay when I was working out regularly, but when they were no longer muscle-toned and firm, they needed to be hidden away under long sleeves. Any part of me that wasn’t ‘perfect’ needed to have a properly fitting hiding place.  

As I grew older, my weight and general romantic desirability were often the main topic of discussion in conversations with my mother, who desperately wanted grandchildren.

Other than a general feeling of annoyance, I didn’t really see a problem with any of this until I had my daughter.

As I’ve watched my daughter grow up completely comfortable in her own skin and unaware of the concept of self-consciousness, I find myself overwhelmed with the need to protect that innocence.  I’ve never been afraid of anything, but I am terrified of seeing that magical self-confidence escape her.

I read an article about when a little girl learned that her mother was fat, ugly, and horrible, and had a revelation.  All of the ‘imperfections’ my mother tried to teach me to hide came from her own insecurities.  And the reason she hated getting older and ‘looking more and more like her mother’ was because her mother did the same to her.  How many generations of self-loathing have we passed from mother to daughter?  Too goddamned many!

I’m determined to break the cycle of self-loathing.  I want my daughter to enjoy growing up. To look forward to watching her body mature, and appreciate her body as it changes throughout her life. In order to do that, I have to do the same.  

It’s impossibly hard.  

Every time I see my not-flat stomach, or when I feel my arms and thighs jiggle when I move around, or when I accidentally open my camera in selfie mode (otherwise known as ‘how many chins can Abby squeeze into her face mode), I have to stop myself from groaning and announcing my own self-consciousness. 

I have to accept compliments from others as truth and not assume that they’re “just being nice.” I have to enjoy each curve, whether it’s muscle or fat. I have to not be ashamed of my early-morning zombie face, but also enjoy wearing makeup and enhancing the beauty that’s already there. 

I have to follow my 6-year-old’s example of unabashed self-love so that I can teach her to keep it.

She’s going to have enough trouble with insecure tweenagers trying to tear her down in a few years.  I have a very short window to show her how to ignore the tear-downs and see her body for the piece of perfection that it is. 

I only wish that I could see my body the same way.

Frida

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I love to love. 

My name is Frida, and my views on love and sexuality and giving and life… really are centric to one core principle. Compersion.

Give without attachment… and without expectation. Give freely-- and be generous. I identify as genderqueer, pansexual, and polyamorous. In a world where so often we can be devalued because of our aesthetics or physicality-- it can make one feel intensely wealthy to be so  physical and giving to others. Being generous makes me feel sexy. Giving to others, creating an emotional and physical safe space while connecting… that is my greatest joy. Well, that and cooking. I love to feed people.

When one asks about sexiness, it can often elicit scenes like the photos we took… seduction, anticipation, joy… For me, sexiness I find in others is more my attraction and adoration of who they are, as individuals. 

I see beauty in you. 

Go out there and love intensely-- and often. Be good to your fellow person. 

That is sexy AS FUCK. 

Ellie

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My name is Eliza Biehl, but I typically go by Ellie. She/Her. Bisexual since birth. Manic pixie dream girl. Exploring polyamory with some really wonderful people. 

In November of 2014, I wrote a haiku. Looking back, it feels weirdly out of place in my life now, and I don't recognize it as a representation of my own feelings.
"Being used for sex
it feels extremely normal
like a bad nights sleep"
I'm trying to think of how I felt during that time, still a teenager with her own ideals of how romance and sex would work. I often thought of polyamory, but dismissed it as an unrealistic option.  Sex just felt like the first step towards a relationship for me, which is already not very typical. The first step? There were many times where my partner didn't see it the same way; that it didn't mean we were romantically interested in each other, and that was hard for me to realize. I felt blindsided by people not wanting more from me, and that made me feel used. I don't blame those people anymore, as I know I was using them just as much. I'm glad that communication has become such an important part of my sex and romantic life because oh boy were these confusing times. The poly community has helped me immensely with this; there's such a huge emphasis on communication  with your partners and others in the polycule to make sure everyone is comfortable, and its been lovely finally having an outlet for what I've felt for so long. The desire for multiple sources of love, new people, and new experiences. And with all of this, I've just come to accept  how I feel about sex. Sex is a very freeing thing, when done with the right people. I think it should involve a lot of laughter, and occasionally bad jokes. What did I think sex was back then? And what have I learned since then?

I used to think that having sex and being naked was the bubble that feeling sexy existed in. In my daily life I adopt an extremely femme style where you can definitely see the signs of my love of anime. I love my itabag (a bookbag covered in different buttons and charms), pastel pink, and all things soft -- but this isn't what I would have considered sexy. The word feels out of place in my life.

I consider myself attractive, my self image is not hurting these days, and that makes me so incredibly happy. It tooks years for me to fall in love with myself. But I think part of the reason I was so excited to do this photoshoot, was to find the space in which I felt sexy, and start to see myself as that.
And it worked, in a way I didn't expect. I see these photos, and I see the way that the friends I've shown reacted. I still see myself in them, which is more important than recognizing myself as sexy. I like the way I laugh, and the way I look at myself, and how I know the best parts of my own body. I feel so very sexy in them, but also still very adorable.

Joey

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Before surgery, I had heard of gender euphoria, and I had even used the words to describe an experience I'd had, but fuck if I was lying to myself that I had actually understood it.

I spent the weeks and months leading up to to my top surgery thinking that maybe life would be more convenient without breasts. I thought it would be easier to bike, to shop. I told my therapist this routinely, that I understood it wouldn't fix the misgendering, that if nothing else it would just be easier. That is wasn't about changing for other people, it would just be more convenient if I didn't find have to look at my chest and wonder why it was on my body.

Are you familiar with gender euphoria though? Before surgery, I had heard the words, and thought I understood. I thought it was just enjoying the rare bow tie, and thinking that my binder had flattened me out a little and that that was nice.

Gender euphoria is this rampant, almost hedonistic surge of affirming love for my body. It is looking in a mirror and seeing strength and power and a wholeness that I literally had never known. It fills me up and buoys me that makes the constant waves of misgendering more like gentle ripples in the rain water the day after the storm instead of the boat-toppling sea that used to take me down.

I am so at ease in myself that sometimes I am angry that it took me so long to understand how badly I needed this. Sometimes I'm so broken-hearted that my own internalized transphobia made me blind to the fact that I was, myself, transgender for decades. Even as I wish, in some ways, that I could be stealth, and just be some femme dude, I have re-doubled my efforts to express my newfound gender euphoria. Maybe if I had known more trans people truly living their right lives I could've moved faster. I could've had less heartache.

I don't know if gender euphoria is only possible because of gender dysphoria - I don't know if it's even possible to describe accurately how cramped and poorly fitting my body used to feel to someone who hasn't experienced it.

To honor my newfound gender euphoria, I gave up the idea of conforming to some default masculine version of sexy and went instead for the thing that I know actually charms the pants off of a certain selection of people: a bunch of pictures of me being me. And I'm a big ol' nonbinary dork with a gosh near perfect butt, who smiles and laughs during sex, with more mischief than smolder in my eyes.

Now I know gender euphoria. It feels like these pictures look. Giddy, silly, and sexy - a complete and unhidden me.

Jess

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As a flirty, curvy girl from the evangelical south, I’m well versed at bumping into preconceived notions of how I should look, act and be. My journey has been one moving from restriction to openness—in my views and practices religiously, culturally and in my relationships. For a time, I soaked all the propaganda in like a sponge. I was a good church girl who compared herself to others and found myself wanting. I strove to be more devout, lose weight, and wear the right clothes.

While still a devout teen, I met my first love. He too was raised in an independent fundamental Baptist church. We met when I was a 220lbs, 13-year-old who had low self-worth. We grew as fast friends; relating with our troubled family backgrounds, me with abusive parents and him with a mom battling a chronic illness. I was there for him the day his mother died and he comforted me when I cried processing my dad’s violent manic episodes. I lost 70lbs the summer between middle school and high school and suddenly became more accepted and popular at school, reaffirming my preconception that appearance means more than substance. I dated around, but when my high school crush expressed interest, I melted. He accepted me, no matter my size and knowing my baggage. He gave me his class ring and we launched a serious romance instantly.  We both began to question all the rules forbidding sensual touch. He was the first person I felt comfortable testing my sexuality with (while still remaining pure little churchlings). Being risqué for us meant touching each other’s hands under a bible at a church service. It was then that I learned that kissing is my gateway touch. It makes me want more from whoever I’m with. With the pleasure of touching my high school love, came a wave of guilt. So much so, that I confessed what little making out we’d done to the pastor’s wife. She convinced me the only saintly action was to break both our hearts to keep from fouling my purity. And so, I broke up with him. I was shattered for years, wondering what could have been with that high school sweetheart of mine. I questioned whether I had really done the right thing but tried to console myself with piety and maintaining appearances. It wasn’t until I met my next serious partner that I really began wrestling with those demons.

I met who was to become life partner my senior year of high school, still reeling over the lack of closure with my first love. He was adorable, creative, and had quiet strength. Once we started kissing, the same urges surged in me as before. Both of us were taught that sex before marriage was a terrible sin, so we skirted the line.  Hormones raging, we tried the wide range of other fun besides penetrative sex, then felt guilty and limited our touch. As we began college, I started to go more extreme with my weight loss regimen and it ventured more into an eating disorder. I was strict with ever reducing calorie counting and lost a tremendous amount of weight. The more weight I lost, the more positive affirmation I received from my social circle. My life partner enjoyed me and my body at all sizes. He called out my self-deprecation and people pleasing. He encouraged me to find myself physically, emotionally and sexually. I decided to intentionally start to eat more, knowing I would likely gain back some of the weight I’d lost. I started to question all the doctrine fed to me in my youth. After 3 years, I viewed sex as a loving act of self-expression and connection. I went out and bought condoms and presented them to my partner in a red gift bag. I remember right after our first time, we looked at each other and wondered if we had really changed the world with this simple act?

It became our mission to try new things and  increase our sexual pleasure. Our shifted connection became apparent to my church community who observed our public interactions, judging them to be increasingly impure. A church leader asked us if we were “trying to stop”. Being honest, we told him we didn’t see anything wrong with what we were doing. The church expelled us from our responsibilities we had held for 3+ years. They thought this punishment would cause me to rethink my decisions. Instead, it had the opposite effect. I became more skeptical of the church’s values and more scrutinizing of their actions. I sloughed off people, philosophies and pain that didn’t fit me anymore. I struggled for years to find my identity and where I fit.  Professionally, I found my passion as a social justice activist, working in mental health, then affordable housing and now in reproductive justice.

After 10 years, my life partner and I became more aware of our queer identities. I realized my casual admiration of the female form was actually a deeper interest that socialization had restricted from forming.  I recognized my natural tendency to be an unabashed flirt. We researched alternative relationship structures and landed on poly. It fit most with our core value system of dignity, equality and autonomy. The opening up process was both terrifying and exhilarating. I noticed how my energy grew the more connections I fostered. I explored different aspects of myself. I saw what happened when I put my bubbly flirtations into the world and bounced off others’ energies. I also saw my deepest insecurities exposed when I saw my partners dating others and wondering whether I was enough. In my relationships, I now work to see the person first, identify if I want them in my life and then figure out together what that looks like. Bodily autonomy, consent and authentic expression have become pillars of my values around sex and relationships.

My wonderful partner, who gifted me this photoshoot, is an example of the surprises poly can bring. I responded to his flirtation online after a period of relationship loss and I wondered if I was enough for this sculpted adventurous dude. Two years later, I’ve witnessed, from his example, how poly can build intimate communities with intention. We’ve shared our souls and held each other tight in hard times. With his wife, I’ve developed a special kinship that I can’t quite fit into any of society’s categories. She’s my example for how to make new metamours feel welcome. She’s helped me explore my queerness and build my confidence to pursue sexual and romantic relationships no matter someone’s gender identity.

Five years after opening up, here I am, still very much connected to my life partner, and also full of deep connections I could never have imagined. I find joy having relationships I can’t quite characterize and seeing happiness and growth in those around me. I’m strong because of my choices and quirky self-determination as well as my diverse community of confidants, lovers, partners and friends who check my blind spots. When I sit in doubt, they remind me of my inner and outer beauty. My teenage self would be stunned by my unconventional life.

I hope, as you view these photos, you see a girl who has scars; but who has used them to reclaim herself. A girl who loves deeply and plays loudly. Someone who struggles but has found a community to help pick her back up. I consider the act of working to love my body as it changes and allowing others to express their attachment to me to be my own personal revolution.

Brit

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My name is Brit, I am a genderfluid, usually female presenting, queer human who doesn't give a fuck about what pronouns people use to refer to me (just don't call me ma'am)!

I identify strongly with the label/relationship style non-monogamous and have for as long as I've known what it was. I've never actually been in a monogamous relationship. I've had periods of only seeing one partner, but I've never been emotionally monogamous. 

Finding the strength and bravery to do this photoshoot with Braden was very difficult. I've been overweight my whole life. I was at the heaviest I'd ever been last fall. Over the last year I've lost 41 pounds and started identifying with my own body as something that could, maybe, possibly, be sexy. 

I came to the realization that if I love the people I love for what is between their ears, not what is between their legs, why shouldn't I love myself the same way?

Being able to work with Braden to turn my body into art, was not only a wonderful milestone of my personal weight loss journey, but also a milestone of my openly being, loving, and embracing my genderfluidity.

I am excited to have done this, and I am excited to continue along both my weight loss journey, and my exploration into non-binaryness.

Ashley

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My name is Ashley Sylvester (She/Her) a bisexual circus artist from Chicago, Illinois. I’ve lived in Illinois my whole life and I guess because of that I was always looking for a way to leave. There is that old phrase, “run away with the circus.” I guess for me, it stuck. For the last 6 years of my life I had dedicated my time, blood, sweat and tears into becoming a professional circus artist and performer.

Throughout my journey, I found that the only thing that has ever made me feel sexy is being able to express myself. Whether it was through dance, circus, or musical theater, if I was able to be unapologetically myself, THAT, was sexy. Throughout circus training my body basically went through what I like to call “second puberty.” I gained strength, my shoulders got wider, my arms got bigger and instead of feeling self conscious about it. I loved it. My big back might even be my favorite part of my body.

Circus probably saved my life, but I really have a lot more to live. I get to be unapologetically me and there is nothing sexier then someone living their truth.

Yanire

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I’m 47. Born and raised in Mexico. Born with female genitalia and raised as Female, using the pronouns she, her, and hers. At the same time, my parents told me my brother and I were just the same and I believed them. I played “as a boy” until I was 12, when the other boys decided I had become a girl. I enjoyed exploring the bodies of boys and girls, until my parents told me it was not OK, that I was too young to play that way, and especially it was not ok to play with girls. I have always admired others and felt attracted regardless the gender.


I have always liked my butt too much, mainly because my chest was flat. Much later, I realized I really have a nice butt.

But, having a nice butt was not enough to feel sexy. I was born and raised in a binary culture: smart or beautiful. I was born smart and beautiful, but raised in a family where smart was more important, and I had a beautiful cousin the same age. I felt beautiful to someone else’s eyes when I was 15, during summer vacation at the beach. I went back to classes to be smart. I wanted to find a partner and feel loved for being smart, and I always yearned to hear I was beautiful.

Being tall didn’t help, even if people say it is an advantage. "I would never date a woman taller than me."

Being round didn’t help, even if people say it is nature’s perfect body. And I wasted my skinniest days feeling fat.

I feel sexy now just by looking at myself in the mirror. By taking pictures of my whole round body. By sharing my pictures. By letting people touch me. By being naked as much as possible. By dressing exactly the way I feel every day.


I was born and raised in a monogamous culture. Hanging out with multiple potential partners was enough to be call slut, even if there was not sexual intention or contact. I had my first boyfriend at 18. He waited until I was legal, but at the same time, he was surprised I was a virgin, like Mary. We dated, we had sex, and it was expected for us to get married. We didn’t get married. It lasted four long years. When I said no more, he said I only wanted to start fucking everybody before it was time to get married. Yes, he call me a slut, and many other things. I was ready to date without labels. I met someone who didn’t like labels. And then, one day, he said four terrible words: “this is my girlfriend.” That turned my world upside-down. And we got married. When I got divorced after years of domestic violence, I decided to be celibate and not date at all. Two children kept me busy for the next ten years. The first one left at 17. The second one started planning to leave, and I decided it was time to try a partner/sex one more time. I had wondered for the last couple of years if I didn’t like sex. It was the right time and the right person, and I was ready to go back to the romantic/sexual life, and he died. I was 43 years old, and had had one boyfriend, one husband, and one weekend stand. At 46 years old, I moved to the US. At 47 I attended a Poly Speed Dating event. Four months later, I’ve had 15 partners, and lots of learning.

Being polyamorous really doesn't mean anything better than other types of relationships, because we are humans. One of my first dates, and someone who is considered a guru in the poly community, told me "I am picky" as a compliment . I felt sooo pretty and special. Now I think of it and feel nauseous. We are all special, and pretty to someone. I don't want to be called beautiful ever again. That implies a cultural construction and stereotypes. I want to see myself in the mirror and say "I like you" and sometimes " I DON’T like you." I hope I can explain this to people around me, and others through this blog. I hope we can deconstruct and start all over  again. "I like you" is intimate just between the two of us. I like what I see, I like what I touch, I like what I feel, I like it now, because now is the only moment we have. 

Last night P told me "I could stare at you all night." For the first time in my life, I felt it and I believed it. 


NOTE: These photos were taken in one of my worst moments, when an allergic reaction covered my legs and arms with terrible hives. It was scary and I decided to like me. I caressed myself so much, thinking of all the people who have permanent skin conditions and yearn to be touched. I was worried my partners wouldn't want to touch me. They stepped up.

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Cayt

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Starting is always the hardest part so I guess I will just dive right in. I’m here to chew bubble gum and look sexy and I’m all out of bubble gum.   

If you would have told me six years ago I would be so comfortable with myself sexually I would pose in the nude, I would have called you crazy. I grew up as a missionary kid in a very conservative Christian home and was a super goody two shoes. Sex was wrong and you could never, ever be attracted to the same sex.  

Well I guess I’m going to hell now. Oh well! Only the fun people will be there.  

To introduce myself, I am Cayt, a 27-year-old bi-female good with she/her pronouns. I am a huge nerd with my favorite hobbies being video games, watching horror movies and fucking. I am in an open relationship with a primary partner and have been for almost six years now. Without him I can’t say I would’ve had the courage to become my real and true self. Having that support has allowed me to become the damn sexy confident person I am today.  

Looking back over the years I always secretly knew I was attracted to females. Younger me fell in love with Alexa Vega and used to write her letters but was always too shy to send them. I also realize that my female friend I was so protective of in high school, I actually had feelings for. Growing up I always knew there was something missing. I always joke that it was really James Gunn I have to thank for the realization of my sexual identity. It was while watching the lesbian sex scene between Debbie Rochon and Janet Jensen in Tromeo and Juliet that I realized that it turned me on. At this point, I finally admitted to myself what others had known for so long. Realizing your sexual identity is probably one of the most freeing moments in your life. It’s both terrifying due to the fear of others’ perceptions but exciting due to the opportunities that open up to you.  

Since then I have charged forward and never looked back. I am currently a cam girl seeking to further my career in being naked. Thanks to everyone for reading and I hope you enjoy the photos!

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Carolyn

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I am pansexual.  My preferred gender pronouns are they, their, them, she, her.  I am polyamorous.  I have bipolar disorder, I am an artist…  I struggle with co-dependent tendencies and have taken a lot of time to be alone this past year and it has been great.  I have recently discovered that having body hair makes me feel incredibly sexy.  It has taken a long time for me to get to a point of self acceptance where I could feel comfortable enough to stop shaving.  


Growing up, I was hyper focused on the concept of perfection. As a kid I wanted to be the perfect daughter.  As a teen, I wanted to be the perfect girl.  Physical perfection was all that mattered to me and when I realized that it wasn’t possible for me to achieve perfection - I day dreamed about being girls in my class who looked perfect -  I literally wanted to be someone else.  In my twenties I wanted to be everything that my mother-in-law wanted me to be.  Now, in my thirties I struggle with feeling like I am not enough, or that I am too much, or that I am wrong for existing as I am.


At this point in my life, I am still really critical of myself most of the time and I often feel guilty or bad for not being a better version of myself.  My strive for perfection includes my struggle with my body hair.  Summer time used to be a really frustrating season for me because of the chore of shaving.  Shaving gives me terrible razor burn and in-grown hairs which I end up picking at; literally digging them out of my skin.  It is gross and makes me feel at odds with myself.  It can take weeks to heal. When I don’t shave, I don’t pick at my skin and in a way I am listening less to that critical voice in my head.  Having body hair feels incredibly sexy because I am allowing myself to be at home in my body and my mind.


I have had a difficult time with accepting myself but I am lucky to have had some role models over the years: women who didn’t give a fuck what haters thought and did their own thing.  Here are some key memories that have inspired me to stop shaving:


At 17 I was in math class and my friend Leah was wearing a belly shirt and you could see her happy trail and she was beautiful and seemed completely comfortable.


When I was 20 I went to a party held by grad students (I was a lowly undergrad) and there was a girl there in a yellow dress with completely unshaven, hairy as fuck legs, and I could not stop staring at her.  She was beautiful, and confident, and completely comfortable with herself.  Her confidence was inspiring.  Her hairy legs were hot.  


My friend from college posted a picture of herself on instagram and her legs were hairy and she looked powerful, and I thought to myself, I want that for me.  


My best friend stopped shaving last summer and showed me a picture of them-self in a bikini and it was glorious.  They were so confident, sexy, and hairy.


I went to an ecstatic dance event in Austin Texas and there was this young goddess dancing and eating zucchini bread, and her stomach had the most beautiful happy trail.  She was confident and relaxed and so so so so so hot.


I decided to do this photo shoot as a way to celebrate how far I have come.  Along with my new relationship to my body hair, I strive less for perfection and I take better care of myself.  Although I still struggle with self-acceptance, I continue to be kinder and softer to myself as I continue to work at being ok with me.

If you like what we do and want to help ensure we can keep doing it, please hit that subscribe button and help us keep going, or Contact Us to book your own shoot!