I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It

Our editor-in-chief bares it all in a direct confrontation with body shame.

My body is a testament to high testosterone. I have a body type one sees a lot: male pattern baldness, plenty of body hair, builds both muscle and fat very easily. You see guys like me all the time, with our wide shoulders and wider beer guts. Burly sonsabitches, often rocking the shaved-head-and-beard combo. It is not, it’s fair to say, a body type that is highly lauded by media culture.

I didn’t always look like this. When I was a teenager, I was so skinny I won awards for dressing as Jack Skellington, which sounds like a joke and isn’t. When I was twenty, I dressed as Nightwing for a costume contest, and the woman MCing the show called me “the reason spandex was invented.”

That was a long time ago.

Nowadays, I’m technically considered obese.

Click to continue…NSFW images ahead

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About Noah Brand

Noah Brand is a writer and editor, and quite possibly also a cartoon character from the 1930s. His life, when it is written, will read better than it lived. He is usually found in Portland, Oregon, directly underneath a very nice hat.

Comments

  1. Hello, men.
    I just recently completed an art/essay book of similar work: “Love Yourself ~ A Body of Work.” (Check it out at http://shop.kemsoncooper.com)

    It’s all about SELF-EMPOWERMENT … BEING YOU … LOVING AND ACCEPTING THE BODY.
    It’s great to see Noah here, baring it all — I think society fears the male body and it’s time that men’s bodies are accepted for their natural beauty. It’s my goal to share this exact same message, to have men feel empowered and unashamed, and to live a full open and honest life.

    And also to fight body fear/shame/hatred in our culture.

    Be you, men. All of you.
    ~Kemson Cooper
    Artist & Writer

  2. Thank you for this. That was cathartic.

  3. Good on you! I’ve actually always preferred this body type in men.

  4. This reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where Jerry wakes up on the subway only to realize he’s sitting across from a fat naked man. The man says, “I’m not ashamed of my body.” Jerry says, “That’s the problem—you should be.”

  5. I am ALL for any form of body positivity. <3 So, I find this amazing and wonderful. Keep it up Noah Brand.
    All bodies are beautiful!

  6. Thank you for this honest photo-essay. Well done ! Very helpful and encouraging.

    For most of my young life I had such body-image issues I developed a severe eating disorder. It nearly killed me. Along with the shame of the disorder was the added shame that what I had (bulimia) was then considered mostly a young woman’s issue. Added to that was the fact that I was in a very shaming spiritual community. In short, I was in hell. . My issues with my body now mainly have to do with weight-gain and aging. But my approach to health and fitness is still based in self-acceptance and kindness and compassion. Overall, I recognize this is a big and important issue for men, as well as women. Thank you for dealing with it.

  7. I think you look awesome! Strut your stuff. Your pics are very tasteful lets see more!

  8. Marty Gabriel says:

    I think you’re absolutely lovely.

  9. Good on ya, you look terrific. A proper bloke, certainly nothing to ashamed of. I wish more men had your courage.

  10. Thanks for having the courage to be yourself. That is something I need to do more often. Best of luck to you.

  11. Joss Adams Bear says:

    BRAVO! I wish more men would celebrate the beauty of the male physique in all it’s shapes. I am a gay man and I love the male body. Big, muscled, furry, smooth, belly, washboards…..BEAUTY. I hope this catches on and more men do the same. This article is EXACTLY why I chose to become a nude male model for the “Bear” gay sub-culture. I’ve spent most of my life feeling shame because of my physical attributes and one day I got sick and tired of being sick and tired and said, “F*#K what people think of how I look. I work out because I WANT to. I’m healthy because I WANT to be and if you don’t like my furry belly then go away!” BRAVO Noah Brand!

  12. Bravo Noah,
    I applaud your gutsy post. You rock and I’m sure you’ve helped other men (and women) with this post.
    I’m trying to do the same thing with my website for women.
    I know it’s a long shot, but I’d love to have a guest post from you someday…
    🙂
    All the best,
    Kris

  13. Wow Noah, well done, how brave of you to step through your fear like that. I am sure it was an empowering exercise for you which has produced great results. There was a period, long time ago where I wouldn’t be with a man overweight because I’m into health and fitness. I’m still into health and fitness however I have realized since is that I was missing out by not seeing the man for who he truly is, for what is shining deep within. To me that’s the biggest turn on, without a doubt. Blessings to you.

  14. Hey, I LOVE your body type! I’d do ya 🙂

  15. I don’t like photos of myself much. I saw a pic of me recently and it’s weird to see, I’ve lost a lot of weight but I am still pretty big. 6’6, 320lbs, but then even as I lose weight I notice the skin being loose. I’m getting lap band fill next week n hopefully I’ll lose more weight for better health, but I am dreading the loose skin. I weight a shirt usually when I go swimming because of manboobs but I am trying to ignore this now and just be more comfy with my body, it’s a tough battle but oh well.

    There have been some major developments in obesity recently, they have linked bacteria to diabetes and also found a bacteria that helps rats/mice loose a hell of a lot of weight and it’s also the same one that helps gastric bypass patients lose weight. Basically the bacteria thickens themucus wall and allows less food to be absorbed before you excrete it. They’ve also found obese people miss one of the bacteria (intenstinal flora) that thinner people have which can play a big role in why some thin people can eat n eat and gain little whilst others eat a little and gain a lot.

    Food in, food out is a very basic look at it because if you and I eat the same thing, we may absord differing amounts of that food. In the future intenstinal flora transplants might be a good option to get healthier/better bacteria in our intestines to help us lose and maintain a much better weight. It may also cure type 2 diabetes from what I can guess.

  16. Well done Noah. I wrote about this subject, specifically regarding penises, on your site a while back: http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/lets-talk-about-penises-shall-we/. Writing about it is one thing, you’ve taken it to a whole other level by exposing yourself in this way. That takes a vulnerability I wish I could say I have, but I don’t at this point. I am slowly getting there, and this just inspires me to continue my journey. Thank you.

  17. Brilliant. I have just written a very similar piece. However, my bravery was just in putting an actual photo of the fat me on the internet… am not quite ready to go birthday suit yet…

    Here it is.

    http://limpetgirl.blogspot.com/2013/08/the-truth-about-being-fat_14.html

    Enjoy. x

  18. I think you´re beautiful. Great photos!

  19. Noah~ I wish you could see you as your lovers do too. My own Dear Hubby is a manly man, with hair on his body and an imperfect weight, and you know what I see? Beauty. Studliness. Curves. RAWR! I see a man with passion in his eyes, a killer wit and an ass to die for! Hope you start seeing those things in yourself soon.

  20. I applaud you for your bravery. For what it’s worth, you have the exact configuration that I am attracted to – body hair, belly, and all. To me it’s that exact combination that is sexy, manly, sensual, comfortable, primal, and feels safe. Call me?? 😛

  21. Back hair on a man always looks odd to me. But, it’s only because we see a lot of naked or half naked women and we so seldom see the naked backs of men in comparison. A half-nude woman is fairly commonplace these days. But people still feel shocked at seeing a nude man (even if it’s just his butt).

    You look fine in your photos. But, I was more drawn by what you had written and what you have done, the things that make you who you are.

    I’ve been a fat woman a long time. It still makes my day when someone I don’t already know can see me, not the way I look. It happens far more often than I would expect when I read things other women write. I think it is my own attitude. I still expect to be part of the world, treated like a person, etc. I do see others who spend the day looking down at their feet, feeling ashamed before anyone else does anything to shame them. If people leave the house feeling ashamed they are more likely to find more shame from other people because they are already expecting to find it.

  22. I had an artist flatmate many years ago. She had stuck some of her drawings from life class up in the hall. We had a short discussion; I remember she said, “Most people actually look better naked, because most people don’t know how to wear clothes.”

  23. i was feeling good until i saw the blatantly sexist american apparel ad 1/2 way down the ms. page of a girl who look underage in a skin tight body stocking with her butt and legs exposed and her back arched as if she is inviting a man to mount her from behind. i guess Ill go elsewhere so I dont have to look at underage looking girls who are almost naked or in tight clothes posing for a for a company that is supposed to be advirtisiing clothes and not skinny perfect stereotypical girls who look underage, and whose owners have been found guilty of sexual assault of their minor aged models like the one pictured..

  24. Bravo. Beautifully conceived, written and executed piece. From my point of view both men and women are heartily shamed about our bodies by a culture that promotes profit above physical and emotional wellbeing.
    If we aren’t insecure they can’t continue to sell us the pills, potions, lotions and garments that are the booby prize for buying into the cult of you’re never enough.
    Thanks for speaking out naked.
    Maureen AKA Moe The Pro

    • Beautifully stated, Maureen!! It reminds me of a quotation I read:

      “If we have only trash and trivialities to sell, we must produce trashy and trivial personalities to serve as consumers”

      ~~ Lewis Mumford (1895 – 1990) – From “The Condition of Man” (1944)

      Let’s step away from PC BS mind control and move back into re-empowering ourselves!! 🙂

      George

  25. This is absolutely beautiful. You are absolutely beautiful. Thank you so much for doing this; being the change in the world. I admire this and you.

  26. When women suggest that they have been dealing with this for longer than men or it is more egregious, I would suggest that they make sure that this is correct.

    What I am 100% sure of is that women complain about body image WAY more than men do. Does complaining about something mean that the phenomenon exists more for the complaining group or that they are more just outraged and vocal about it?

    You can expect men to start speaking up more. Men’s silence all of these years came from an overconfidence that was not earned. Women and other groups have really dominated such conversations for a long time now and the narratives are way off track.

    BTW Noah. Kudos to you for doing this. I do not have the courage to do what you have done.

    • This guy is sane/brave/& provocative, and a a natural for his age.
      Wish I would be as forthcoming abt myself.
      For now, I hide within my clothes.
      Ray.

    • Kate Corwyn says:

      Check your privilege.

    • Mens silence on body shaming means media wont cover it. But no matter what women talk about only a tiny amount of it is published, so when women talk about body issues, that topic fits into mainstream idea of what to publish since it can nearly fit into the ‘nagging feminist’ negative stereotype, thus reinforcing stereotypes they want to reinforce of who they dont like. Rick – when were men ever chastized for not wearing corsets for womens visual pleasure? Women get nasty looks when they look comfortable in non feminine clothes. Whether it shorter dresses, or miniskirts, tighter clothes – there is no end to body shaming for women when they do not seek to arouse men visually 23/7.

      • It feels like you have completely missed the point of The Good Men Project and more importantly the spirit of this article. Some men are oblivious or happily take advantage of male privilege, but it is safe to say that men who frequent or contribute to this site are generally not those men. It seems to me this site and the majority of articles you can find here are the antithesis of the status quo. This is a community of men and women trying to make men better, and this includes combating the type of behaviors that reduce women to nothing more than objects to be desired and a whole host of other issues that lead men to be less than their best. Media does not portray the typical male body any more than it does the typical female body. Men have body image issues, not knowing this is not paying attention.

  27. yes please!! says:

    Very hot, love it 🙂 Go Noah!! :)))

  28. Last month I posted a photo on face book of my partner and myself, similar to this article making the point of how ashamed we are of our bodies, yet we all have penises, vaginas, breasts and that are bodies are different shapes, but never obscene. I am 56 and could loose a bit of weight, my partner 40 and is bulimic. I encouraged my FB friends to have similar courage and post their photos, none did.( I am a painter and a number of them happily pose naked in front of my easle) But I got alot of possitive comments and many “likes”. Socially I had a few snide comments about penis size, to which I responded that my penis was larger than their brains
    .In GermanyScandinavian countries they ridicule Anglo Saxons and Americans for our inhibited attitudes.
    Why is it that so many religeous people, who believe that God made man in his own image find the naked body offensive, do they think that God was a pornographer?

    • George Stewart says:

      Great questions! I wonder who will step up to try and refute your points???!!!… 🙂

    • Valter Viglietti says:

      @Anthony Tewfik: “I had a few snide comments about penis size, to which I responded that my penis was larger than their brains”
      Loved this! 😆

      Regarding religious people, their beliefs are often so absurd and contradictory (see your example), they have to live in denial to avoid noticing it. :roll:

  29. ArmadilloLady says:

    I think you look very sexy. Good for you, Noah.

  30. Pure, 100% courage, honesty and sharing. There should be neither controversy nor elevated tempers in the context of such rarely earned nouns. This is simply refreshing candor and I feel the world is just a tad bit better today because one more person is capable of it. Bravo.

  31. Civil Liberties says:

    “Deal with it.” Isn’t this the slogan of the “Self-esteemist Narcissistic Empowerment Front.” While the US culture collapses, our discourse turns increasingly “me, me, me; I want my way.”

    • Observing says:

      That is truly the most ironic post I have ever seen, and that says something, for sure. Are there no other concerns on earth but what you personally find most compelling? “While the US culture collapses, our discourse turns increasingly ‘me, me, me; I want my way.’”

    • Valter Viglietti says:

      @Civil Liberties: “While the US culture collapses”

      Yeah, sure. A man accepting (and/or exposing) his own body is what’s making the US collapsing… :roll:
      What next? A nipple will make Wall Street explode?!? 😆

      Noah’s “deal with it” is about personal freedom and acceptance, not imposing his own way onto others.
      It’s about “I have decided to feel ok in my own skin, and you can’t make me feel bad anymore”. What’s the problem in this? (unless you feel the need to judge and control everybody’s feelings…)

      BTW, USA never had a “culture”. You just borrowed it from us europeans… 😉

  32. Oh, look: a kitten!

  33. Virtusophia says:

    Noah, I think that you are brave! I am proud of you that you saw what you think was a good think and you did it–despite any negative consequences that may happen because you did this. I am glad that you showed your penis to us! I think men have so much negative pressure to not measuring up–whether we’re talking literally or metaphorically. I am a person who does not believe that naturism or nudism is possible because of practical reasons (just think about a chair in a public place…think about how many anuses would touch that chair if their clothes had not prevent their anuses from touching that chair…or think about junior high boys having erections in school without any way to hide them…or think about how awkward sports would be with a bunch of dicks and boobs flopping everywhere–that would be too distracting especially during wrestling matches or you might get dirt in your asshole while playing baseball/softball, etc.) and for moral reasons (all the temptations would be so much more intense, especially in this culture, when there are no clothing boundaries). All that being said, I think that we need to STILL CONTINUALLY AND ENTHUSIASTICALLY proclaim that the body is a good thing!!!! THE BODY IS A GOOD THING!!!! As a Christian, this is very easy for me because I know that GOD made male and female bodies and called them GOOD. We are good! SHAME HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE ENEMY, at least since the fall of Adam and Eve. We need moments such as the ones that Noah has provided to be able to study the human body (in this case the male human body) in a way that is not explicitly sexual, but that actually reveals WHO THE PERSON IS. Noah has a beautiful soul and body. We can see that. I think it is interesting that he mentioned that he wanted his LOVER to take pictures of him. To me, that says that he wants someone to see not just a random naked dude showing the world his penis and his hairy buns, but he wants to show people who he really is WITHOUT SHAME. On this side of heaven, I think these types of occurrences can only happy on certain rare occasions because humans now have a tendency to make what is beautiful into something ugly. Anyway, I am just absolutely shocked by the bravery that Noah Brand has in showing us his body, including his most intimate parts–his penis and scrotum. You are so brave, Noah, like what if your mom and dad see this, maybe they have…what if your future employer sees this, maybe they have. What if your friends from high school see this or the bullies from high school see this (if you had any bullies), maybe they have! But you have made yourself so vulnerable that anyone who googles your name is able to easily see your penis, your ass, your whole body stark naked. You have made yourself vulnerable to someone saying, “Look it, it’s Noah, he’s got an uncut dick!!!” But your have chosen to forget the shame and drop the fig leaf. You have charged other men with energy to do the same–either figuratively or literally. I think that is commendable regardless of whether or not someone takes issue with this article! THANK YOU, NOAH! As a young man, I look to you with great respect. Thank you!

  34. clearandbright says:

    Thank you Noah.

  35. Body-Shaming. It’s often talked about as a women’s issue: That women of non-ideal body types are shamed for nudity. But this certainly isn’t exclusive to women. There are very few cases in which a man’s nudity is accepted.

    And this guy is my new hero.

  36. Rock on Noah! Enjoy the liberation!

  37. Bryan Harris says:

    He has a beautiful body, and the courage to display it. We have to get away from those strict body images.

  38. Philip B says:

    Take your clothes off.. cover yourself in mud and body paint, run through the forest, yell and howl (Confest in Australia).. then get on a bike with a pile of other folks and ride naked through your city (World naked bike ride). Life is way too short to think badly about the miracle of creation that each of us represents.

    People speaking of shame are likely those that cast disparity between themselves and others. And hell if you don’t like your body shape you can always wake up and do an increasing set of pushups whilst cutting out processed food.. what you put in you get out.. whether mental, physical or verbal.

  39. Both men and women are experiencing incredible pressure to look a certain way because of our consumerism driven culture. 99% do not look like models and yet our spouses think we are the hottest thing ever (thankfully!)

  40. Kudos to you, confidence is SEXY!!!!

    • Maurice says:

      Absolutely attractive….finally men are starting to be at ease with there masculinity….David Suzuki must be very happy!

  41. Daphne Blake says:

    “a testament to high testosterone. … plenty of body hair, builds both muscle and fat very easily. … It is not, it’s fair to say, a body type that is highly lauded by media culture.”

    Exactly. And also exactly the type that floats my red-blooded American Female hormones. Go ahead, try to find porn for this male body type. Hetero porn, that shows faces. Nuh-uh – I can find a lot of boys who look like my nephews… ick. There’s a reason my boyfriend’s nickname is The Stud. He’s all man, and he looks it. Thanks for posting this!

  42. Noah Brand didn’t use the word and may not be familiar with the concept, but he’s acting like a naturist. Nudists go around naked, but naturists do it with a philosophy that says there’s nothing shameful about those tiresomely obscene body parts that we have to hide, and also that there’s nothing shameful about bodies that don’t meet all the criteria for gorgeousness. We’re all products of nature (or of God, if you like that concept) and nobody needs to hide their body away.

    Noah, get yourself down to Sauvie Island and get some rays on that lovely skin!

  43. Personally, I find men like this very attractive…

  44. http://jezebel.com/5916296/can-plus+size-male-models-and-nude-photo-shoots-help-mens-body-image

    Okay I know its Jezebel so I shouldn’t expect much (there is even some “what about teh wimminz” type whining in the comment section, because nothing gets problems solved like bitching about how women have it worse right?) but I get the feeling that the writer may be missing the point. He seems to think that Noah’s efforts here are going to be “the moment” for overweight men to shine. What is missing that “the moment” doesn’t have to be a single photoshoot or even a single person. Honestly I’m almost thinking that the writer of the Jezebel piece is caught up with trying to find something about men and body image for the sake of writing about it rather than looking at how men are actually feeling over this.

    In short he is looking for publicity and page views rather than trying to talk about a serious problem.

    • “I give absolutely zero shits if guys are struggling with their body image due to media et al.
      You know why? Because women get it 50x worse. And it will never change.

      I do not want anyone to ever feel bad about their bodies– that is a hell I know very personally and everyday is a struggle. However, until we get a real response to what women go through, I am not throwing my support behind the other gender’s problems anytime soon.”

      Bawwww, my gender gets it worse!111!11. I like how that poster assumes women get it worse, when the reality could very well be that men just talk about their own body image issues less. Hell a recent survey showed men were slightly more likely to have body image issues than women….

      It’s interesting the author talks about how women are shown near nude or nude, but men are still clothed generally in the plus size imagery.

      • Valter Viglietti says:

        “Because women get it 50x worse”

        The “I/We get it worse” argument is pure BS.
        It’s like saying to someone just punched in the face “Hey! You should not complain, because someone else have been beaten much worse than you. You should not even feel pain!”.
        Total nonsense. Anybody’s pain is his own, and is not alleviated by comparisons.

        Or… We could use the same strategy. 😉
        Every time a radical feminist camplain about something, we could say “Shut up. African (or Arab) women have it much worse”. Taste your own medicine! 😆

      • Michael Rowe says:

        Where did that “we’ve got it worse” post go?

    • I have no patience for what about ‘teh wimminz’ or ‘teh menz’ reactions to pieces like this. It’s time to move beyond simple gender politics and tackle these issues together, because it’s about building a healthy society. While I don’t find Noah attractive, that’s not the point – he certainly doesn’t repulse me. I applaud him for doing this and tackling a problem with class, sincerity and courage.

      While women certainly are more vocal about bearing the brunt of body issues, in my gym, I think it’s the men who are much more dysmorphic in their attitudes to their bodies. They are responding to huge social and popular pressure to have bodies that are a full time job to achieve – and are only achievable for some.

      Can we all just realise that there are different body types, BMI is JUST a number, that doesn’t even take into account muscle mass, and so is your weight.

  45. My body is similar to yours, and seeing yours made me feel less gross. Like, “Hey, that guy looks like me. That’s… not repulsive. Huh.” Thank you.

  46. Rallo Hallow says:

    Shameful…

  47. Anna Morell says:

    Confidence is sexy. You are confident and inspire confidence. Go you, sexy. 🙂

  48. You look wonderful. The one thing I have found that consistantly makes me body comfy is to be more focussed on what is inside that body. You obviously have balls made of brass. That alone should make you see whats in the mirror as sexy as all hell.

  49. wellokaythen says:

    I hope one day we as a society can take it even one step further and go beyond feeling like our bodies are only either shameful or beautiful, like these are our main choices.

    How about sometimes our bodies are beautiful, sometimes they’re not so beautiful, and sometimes they just are the way that they are? Sometimes we can take pride in them, sometimes we just accept that they are bodies. It’s okay if we don’t think all of every part of them on every single person is beautiful all the time. That would be just as absurd as mortifying all flesh completely.

    At the very least, let’s be open to the possibility of the Romantic poets’ notion of the “sublime,” which means something that can be beautiful and at the same time alarming, frightening, even grotesque. There’s no reason we have to be so simple-minded that we can’t find a body both ugly and beautiful at the same time. We can even find the exact same parts ugly and beautiful at the same time. It’s not necessarily an either-or zero-sum game.

    Instead of flipping the self-image coin from ugly to beautiful, I hope someday we can develop some better currency….

    • Bravo, wellokaythen! Bravo!
      So very few questions are truly either-or, zero-sum or win-lose. The world is NOT digital: all ones and zeros!
      A huge part of the societal pressure that we all have to resist in order to grow as human beings, is this modern insistence that the world is either Black-or-White. Not only are there myriad shades of Gray (or Brown, if one simply must see that as a racial comment), but there’s the whole spectrum of color, plus every combination of plaid, paisley and polka-dots that could ever be imagined.

  50. I think you look like pure “man” to me. I love it. I wish I had that kind of body confidence. Some of the men I’ve been most attracted to where not what Hollywood would say is hot. Infact, I find those men sometimes vastly more interesting and sexy and made me feel even more feminine.

    I just hope that there would be just as much male support about a woman going through the same thing as I see female support in this topic.

    • Valter Viglietti says:

      @Erin: “I just hope that there would be just as much male support about a woman going through the same thing …”

      I, for sure, would be a supporter. 🙂

      As a matter of fact, I have always been supportive of female friends (or GFs) with body issues, encouraging them to see themselves “ok” as they were.
      Alas, many of them could hardly believe me: they were more prone to believe societal pressure and their own self-shaming attitude. 😯
      It’s one case where the worst “enemy” is inside. 🙁

      • Unfortunetly, that is a huge weakness among women Valter and yes, sometimes we can be our own worse enemy. But I am very appreciative of your supportive attitude regardless. Thanks Valter!

  51. George Stewart says:

    Truly wonderful!! I have been a naturist (nudist) for nearly forty years (I am sixty-five years old now – if that matters) and articles like this simply reinforce why I adopted that way of life and philosophy way back then. I have never regretted taking that first step. Social nudity allows us to move w-a-y past the conditioned reactions we are endowed with by society and lets us respond to one another (and ourselves) at a far deeper and gentler, loving level.

    Bravo, Noah! I hope that you carry this acceptance and love of the real you with you for the rest of your life.

    Oh, and if anyone is wondering, no, I am not a gay man. Very heterosexual. I have, however, been able to move into that space where I can accept both men and women first and foremost as people, rather than their gender. As I said, it permits one to hold others and oneself in a far gentler and more loving way. You should try it!! 🙂

    Peace, Love and Laughter always!!

  52. I think you look awesome. Honesty, confidence and self-love is ALWAYS sexy. Images like these are so important, it’s so easy to get swept away in the current of body-shaming nonsense that we are bombarded with every day, and bodies that don’t conform to media standards of beauty are so often totally invisible. Pictures like this bring me so much joy. ALL BODIES ARE GOOD BODIES. Well done, Noah, your bravery is admirable!

  53. I just spent the last year interviewing and writing about large people and body image and sex. People who, for the most part, are much larger than Noah Brand. And by larger I mean fatter. I couldn’t possibly tell you the myriad of fascinating things I have learned here, about both women and men, but I will sum it up as best I can: Self perception is everything. I know that sounds simplistic and cliche. It also seems to be true. The primary difference in whether or not people get noticed sexually, is whether or not they feel confident and open about being noticed sexually. That doesn’t deny all of the societal crap. I am not talking about who is hot in a magazine or in the movies. But between real people in real life, male and female, the energy we put out is the energy we get back. (I don’t like that word, energy, but I have a paragraph here). I am not suggesting this is easy. I for one, am terrible at it. Getting to the place of self confidence where people are drawn to you is damn hard work. But it’s not gender specific. Having spoken to men and women, I don’t know that it is harder for one gender. It is certainly harder, or easier, for some people. At any rate, these photos and sentiments are fabulous and I would be quite surprised if they weren’t effective for Noah, in the woman thinking he is sexy department — which is probably not what he anticipated.

    • FlyingKal says:

      Self perception is everything. I know that sounds simplistic and cliche. It also seems to be true. The primary difference in whether or not people get noticed sexually, is whether or not they feel confident and open about being noticed sexually.
      Have you gathered any perception, or estimation, regarding the other way around?
      How will people who are not noticed sexually, react regarding confidence and openness?

      • That’s a good but more difficult topic. For full disclosure (and I guess self promotion) I have a book coming out in a few weeks called Fat Sex: The Naked Truth. It deals with all of this. I think the short answer to your question is it takes a great deal of time and a certain personality type to be sexually confident fat person in our culture — generally speaking. If someone is fat from a young age and not supported for who they are, they tend to have a harder time with confidence and openness. It varies a bit more for people who gain weight later in life, but it can be even harder for them. There are degrees in size and also degrees in self perception. That is in part how society will respond as well.

        I’m making a somewhat educated guess, but I imagine anyone who is not noticed sexually, for whatever reason, may have have issues regarding confidence and openness. Most of us want to be noticed sexually and will be hurt if we aren’t. Right? There are two important realities here, as I see it, off the top of my head. One is how well you fit the current ideal. The other is how bothered you are that you don’t fit the current ideal. The first if fairly objective, and the second is very subjective. There are people attracted to everyone (that seems to be true). Whether you recognize that and can internalize that emotionally involves a lot of factors and is very individual.

        • If someone is fat from a young age and not supported for who they are, they tend to have a harder time with confidence and openness.
          Basically.

          When it comes to attractiveness this has been one of the hardest parts to deal with. When you’ve never heard that affirmation (versus what seems to be Noah’s situation of once having it and losing it somehow, bearing in mind the mention of the MC and spandex) it’s very hard to develop the self perception needed.

          There are people attracted to everyone (that seems to be true). Whether you recognize that and can internalize that emotionally involves a lot of factors and is very individual.
          I think the part in bold is a part of the problem when dealing with someone who has never been sexually noticed. It’s hard to recognize that “everyone is attractive in their own way” when history says otherwise. Whenever someone says something like that it gets stacked up against going a few decades of never hearing how exactly you are attractive.

          And the older a person gets the further they descend.

        • FlyingKal says:

          @Rebecca Jane Weinstein:
          I was talking about people feeling unattractive in general, and not exclusively about fat/overweight people. But thanks for the answer anyway.

          The question was more regarding, if attraction is only (or mostly) a self confidence thing, how do we get people who’ve never been told or felt attractive to get that confidence? Adult people who’ve constantly been rejected or missed out on the whole dating scene?
          I thought that maybe that was a subject you might have an opinion on or maybe have touched in your research?

  54. Having taken some pretty similar steps on my journey towards letting go of my sense of shame about the size and shape of my own body, I can tell you that I found the process of having nude pictures taken very liberating as well – there’s a psychological shift in trying to see in the pictures what others see in you that I found incredibly helpful in seeing myself with out societally induced stigma.

    Congratulations on this bold step in your journey, and thank you very much for sharing it with us.

  55. Well – this chubby lesbian thinks you’re pretty cute and pretty alright and pretty human and brave to put his out there. Hooray! And thanks for reminding us that body shame isn’t just something women have to deal with.

  56. Theresa says:

    Thank you so much for writing and posting this. I truly think that the more people who do this, knowing full well that they do not fit the thin-obsessed Hollywood ideal, the more people will come to accept their own bodies. (P.S.: I think you’re adorable.)

  57. Yes! Good for you! There is nothing sexier than a person comfortable and accepting of their body! It’s a battle I fight every day. Thank you for this, Noah!

  58. Funny, take away the baldness and you’ve got my ideal male. :3

    I’m…not a fan of male-pattern baldness, primarily because my father was going bald by his mid-30’s and I wouldn’t want to wish that on my kids.

    • Actually, most of the genes implicated in male pattern baldness are on the X chromosome so you are more likely to pass it to your sons than your husband.

  59. I wouldn’t exactly call the guy a parade float, but at least his images are in reasonably good taste. I wouldn’t want to see some 500 pound big ‘un posing nude a la the naked Madonna photo book staring at her twat.

    • That kind of conditional body acceptance is what this whole article is trying to dispel. “Some 500 pound big ‘un” has just as much right to feel sexy as Noah does, or you do, or anyone else. That is the whole point.

  60. Jackie C says:

    Thank you. I smiled. It reminded me of how much I love my husbands sweet hairy body.

  61. Body shame, why? Your hot! As long as the overall shape is good… Well that cheered up my work day ;).

  62. If I had a nickel for every time I heard that women were the naturally more “beautiful” sex (because gender essentialism is also totally awesome… not), I’d be rich. I’d also be incredibly depressed at having a reminder for every single time the idea that the male form isn’t sexy or beautiful was reinforced.

    You sir, look great. And also like my husband too. Dudes have every reason to be as happy with their bodies as anyone else. (-Everyone- should be happier about their bodies in general, but… yannow.)

  63. BumpyNella says:

    Please write about how you confronted your fear, shame, and self-hatred. What did you actually do? I am finding it very hard to let these things go.

  64. Fidget Zaftig says:

    Bravo Man! whether I see sexy or not in your particular shape or form matters not. I see REAL, I see OPEN, I see HONEST, and I see CONFIDENT…. and if that isn’t sexy, I don’t know what is!

    Thank you for sharing yourself…

  65. Good on you mate, I wish I had the courage to do this. One day, I hope I will.

  66. You look like my husband. You’re both very sexy.

    I don’t so much have an invariable type as fall in love, and then end up with a fetish for that particular person’s look and style. I guess it’s imprinting.

    Do men have a hard time imagining falling for a person for reasons other than looks, and then getting turned on by whatever those looks happen to be because it’s *them*? Even so much as to generalize the preference and like it on other people too?

    • I don’t think it is so much a man-woman thing, as it is a difference between people. I know plenty of men(-looking people) who are like what you’ve described and conversely I also know of women(-looking people), such as myself, who can’t fall for someone without some sort of initial umpf, at least it hasn’t happened yet. I can like someone a lot, but not desire them if this initial look-based spark is lacking. I guess you could call it shallow, I’ve struggled with it for years and tend to now call it ‘how I work’. It isn’t something I consciously do, or could control and I’ve tried to be with people who I wasn’t attracted to in this way, but in the ‘I’ve known you for a while and you’r super cool, it’s just that it doesn’t feel like enough’ way and it isn’t worth it, neither for me nor for the other person.

      I kind of hope I’ll change, because I have a very narrow type and I only very rarely meet people that fit it (three so far, to be exact).

      • don’t feel bad or ashamed for being this way. I’m a woman (identified) and I feel the same way. I think you’re right in that attraction and who/how we fall in love is very much set by the individual. I used to feel bad that I could develop these strong feelings for men (and women) I found intriguing intelligent, funny, kind, etc… but the hard truth of the matter is you can’t fake attraction. sometimes it is incited by physical factors, sometimes not. it’s so much to do with you personally and where your head is at. don’t feel bad, or afraid, just embrace yourself and your style of love.

    • Valter Viglietti says:

      @Layo: “Do men have a hard time imagining falling for a person for reasons other than looks … ?”

      Personally, I have been “falling” many times for reasons other than looks. In two instances, I felt she was a soul-mate (or something close to it) for me.
      I’m a complex person, so there can be many factors that entice and attract me. I’m sensitive to beauty, of course, but there is much more in a woman.

      I think the stereotype “Men are only looking for beauty” is partly a myth: just like some women are gold-diggers, that doesn’t mean all women are like that.

      • Valter, isn’t beauty in the eye of the beholder? I’m sexually attracted to men. Many a man who looks “beautiful” is too often emptied headed and begs for some training in social skills. Many a muscled guy is simply dumb and narcissistic as hell. Many a guy who looks like an ordinary “joe” has depth and sensuality beyond what you may expect or think possible. I presume this is the same with women, no matter what they may look like on the outside. Sooner or later, we discover that it’s not simply the looks of the person that we find attractive, or indeed it is not the looks, but the depth of the person inside. There is many a man who holds shame about something he just doesn’t want to “look at” or explore and release!

        • Valter Viglietti says:

          @Ken Stoff: “Valter, isn’t beauty in the eye of the beholder?”

          Yes and no. Partly.
          On one hand we have individual tastes and attitudes; OTOH, we’re biologically programmed to find (on average) some traits more or less attractive.
          Thus, thinking “Looks are what matters!” is as blind as believing “Looks doesn’t matter”. Once again, truth lies in the middle. 🙂

          And, this works differently for different persons: people like me and you are more focused on the personality, someone else more on the looks. So, again, there’s no universal recipe.
          But, yes, I agree that when one is empty headed, no amount of looks can save him/her in my eyes. 😉

  67. Kudos to you Noah Brand, it takes real courage to bare everything for a cause you believe in. You have my respect and admiration for your display of bodily pride.

  68. wellokaythen says:

    I second those who are calling you brave for posting these photos and talking about body images.

    This is also extremely brave for a man to do this in the current paranoid political climate. There are those who will now go after you as some sort of online predator, or at least label you as “that guy who posted naked photos online where any child could see them.” One person under the age of 17 sees these photos, and you could be looking at a shitstorm of batshit paranoid delusions. The latest boogeyman frightening people away from free speech is the fear of sexual predators, invariably defined as male and invariably detected anywhere men are unsupervised.

    If we’re going to talk about male body issues about male nudity, we have to talk about the fact that many very vocal people consider what you are doing to be kind of predation. Totally unfair, in my book, but I hope you are prepared for some quite nasty fallout. You may have to say goodbye to any number of jobs on the basis of these photos alone.

  69. Great article! More power to you, Noah! Many a man holds shame, not just about his belly, but about his penis as well. To be seen, heard, acknowledge is imperative for each of us. Some of hide from it, fear it, and run from it. Then, there are others of us who have the balls to simply be who we are and who we want to become. All is in flux. More surprises to come. You’re one of the guys with balls, Noah. Thank you.

    Ken
    PS I write a blog on male sexuality. This month’s article is on “fear”. http://www.transitionpower.com/blog

  70. Rock on, Noah.

  71. Shawn Doe says:

    I always remind myself that no matter what I think of my body there is someone out there who thinks it’s perfect. I’m that person for you. You are perfect.

  72. PursuitAce says:

    So how do you reach the point where you care so much about your appearance? Is that genetic, cultural, some combination thereof? Because I seemed to have missed the gene and I don’t care about cultural thought. The current culture seems to drive some people towards insanity.

  73. Thanks for your honesty, but this has a feeling of giving up. I am reminded of a Seinfeld episode where George kept wearing sweats.

    I probably look something like you and I am at an age where i don’t give a damn but I am embracing life. Exercise, great food, great sex, great times. Your story needs more of that and less of the ” i don’t care what I look like”.

    I actually DO care what i look like, but I live my life to the fullest. The latter takes precedence.
    cheers!

  74. This, sir, was fantastic and inspiring. Thank you.

    My only gripe is that there were no “naked wearing a hat” pictures.

  75. FlyingKal says:

    You, are a brave person.

  76. just want to point out you keep saying loverS, as in plural. which is awesome.

  77. Noah,

    I feel fortunate in that I have never been capable of feeling embarrassment. Shame; well that was felt and ruled much of my life, but never over anything that was actually of my control or decision. This has been true all my life.

    My kids have asked me “weren’t you embarrassed” when telling stories of radical falls off motorcycles…the times (many) that I crashed my boat into other racers’ boats…Injuries when and where I would pee myself out of pain.

    I’ve simply told them, “I’ve never been embarrassed over something that I did not intend or was out of my control.” When they learned of the state of undress in which we kids would go swimming at a near-by lake, they asked the same question; “weren’t you embarrassed?” No! Over what? God did not package me in crime, shame or sin.

    I’ve told them that they live their entire lives in the skin they were given…the bodies that they are. They ought never be ashamed or embarrassed. Of course they are at a highly self-conscious age where even the Euro kids don’t tread without cover.

    I’m not trying to encourage any particular behavior or actions. I just want to discourage any/all unfounded shame. These days, in the USA, maintenance of safe personal boundaries seem to have distorted assignment of shame or embarrassment in illogical ways.

    I don’t want my son to see his future partner and think “Wow! She’s freakin beautiful…she must really be shamed by her body.”

    • Valter Viglietti says:

      Thank you Rob!
      It’s empowering and refreshing reading such a positive, mature and constructive attitude.
      Your kids are lucky having such a father. 🙂

      It’s like we are taught we must fight “reality as-it-is” (our bodies included), pursuing some utopic “reality as-it-should-be” .. and that results in a life of constant fear and stress.

  78. Not sure if it’s cool to say this, but I found the pictures attractive and erotic. I like the vulnerability.

  79. kaija24 says:

    Kudos for the lovely pics and your very personal thoughts on your body/body image and societal views of the body/nudity in general (I especially liked the pic with the cat…adorable!). Your body type and how you described it looks/sounds very much like my partner. I tell and show him very often how much I like his body and how hot he looks naked, but it has taken a very long time for him to get comfortable with my compliments and believe them. It really is sad that he, and so many other men I know, are unaware of or unwilling to believe that they are attractive as hell in their physical selves, and that yes, straight women DO have desire for them. 🙂 Thanks for firing a shot across the bow in the battle for appreciation for bodies of all genders!

  80. Brian Levene says:

    I look something like you – 15 years older and somewhat worse for wear.

    I just think its a bloody miracle women think we’re sexy.

    • As a woman who has spent most of her now 50 years overweight, I am constantly amazed men find me sexy.

      My current guy looks much like Noah, right down to the bald head and beard. I adore him and his body. He seems to feel that way about me. But still, I at least once a week I look at myself in the full length mirror and tell myself “He thinks this is sexy. That’s the opinion that matters.” So I try to take it on faith and not say “Really? This? This is what you find sexy” out loud.

      • Yeah I am overweight and find it hard to believe women find me sexy, but then I guess I’ve realized we all like different body shapes, sizes, attributes, etc. Some will find me sexy, some will find me ugly, can’t please them all. I’ve had women say they like bigger men who are cuddly, makes them feel warm n safe, at a time I was absolutely disgusted by my body. It helps to hear it but I still have body image issues, especially my manboobs which I copped a lot of bullying over and even a lot of groping (sexual assault as the cops told me) in high-school. I guess it makes it worse that breasts are seen as feminine, so it use to leave me feeling less like a man and feeling I wouldn’t be seen as attractive.

        I’ve also had women who feel they were too fat and were actually very thin, had thin women who tell me they were too thin and need to put on weight, larger women that felt too fat and when I’ve tried to tell the ones I found attractive that they were beautiful TO ME, I mean really sexy, they met it with disbelief which troubled me.

        I think our society focuses too much on a universal bodytype that is meant to be the best, beautiful, and anyone failing to live up to that can feel like they’re failing which is really sad. The reality is beauty, attraction, seems to be fairly random and I’ve found there is someone attracted to everyone. Guess it just takes time to find that person.

        I think the shame got me so bad that I became completely turned off to too much fat, I feel shame myself because I just can’t find some women attractive, I don’t even find myself attractive and I grew up basically hearing fat = ugly, being made to feel ugly because of my fat. It’s tough feeling disgusted by fat in the visual appeal sense, how does a person reprogram their mind against that? Is it even possible to change who I am attracted to, or should I feel shame because I am not attracted to women with a similar body type to me? I feel horrible and feel it’s probably hypocritical, but then I think maybe it’s also just random, that I could simply prefer certain body types more and that doesn’t have to mean a body type the same as mine. I’ve seen thin men and women who aren’t attracted to thin people of the gender they’re attracted to, same for people in all body types. I grew up pretty much with the feeling that we HAD to date people similar in looks to us, similar body types, that no one could stray from that as it was an unspoken rule, but is it really?

        I hate the way our bodies are treated by the media, society, I hate how much bullying goes on in schools with people of all shapes n sizes, too fat, too thin, too weak, too muscly, too tall, too short, bad hair, needs glasses, pimples, freckles, etc. Who decided that only a small portion of the population should ever represent the most attractive for ALL people?

      • Valter Viglietti says:

        Beth, I think this issue is about comparing our bodies to “images of perfection”.

        I have been looking at myself in the mirror for a long time, thinking I was ugly.
        Then, one day I realized I were feeling that way, because I were comparing myself with some “perfect body” ideal I had in mind. And, of course, I were much less handsome than that.
        Discarding that ideal from my mind, I realized I was just “normal”, an average guy. Not the best, but neither ugly. I could even see myself “cute”. 😀

        I really think beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
        My present girlfriend is overweight, and she – like you – can’t see herself as sexy or pretty. Yet I see her that way, because I don’t let common beauty stereotypes controlling my mind.
        I see HER beauty, not beauty “as-it-should-be”.

        But I’m aware this is harder when it’s about ourselves.
        Sometimes an external observer may see what we cannot.

  81. Stephen Cerovski says:

    Try being HIV+/Aids for 25 years and having to move back to nowhere Montana population 4,000 because you need to take care of your aging parents and see what you have to complain about. After the HIV drugs ruin your body, wreck your sexual urges and appetite and put all the fat in your gut, you got nothing much to complain about friend. You are a normal guy with health and sexual function. If wishes were fishes. I’d settle for someone who’d just give me a good hug.

    I don’t know what is up with being down with your self image…and there are guys that got it worse than both of us…some of them are even dead. So just wake up, move and shake what you have left to shake…I try to keep in practice just in case.

    • “After the HIV drugs ruin your body, wreck your sexual urges and appetite and put all the fat in your gut, you got nothing much to complain about friend”
      I absolutely hate dismissive comments like this. Yes, that life sounds terrible, but what right do you have to assert someone with their physical health intact (note I didn’t say mental health) has nothing much to complain about? Unless you know this persons life intimately, how do you know what they go through? It’s playing the whogotitworseolympics, it’s ignorant and silly because it doesn’t matter who got it worse, BOTH can suffer quite a lot. There are starving kids in Africa who have never used a computer, face all kinds of horrors, would it be fair of me to say you have nothing much to complain about because of that?

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        Well said.

        @Stephen: I sympathise, that sounds awful, and I can only imagine how aggravating it must be to see someone complaining about something like body image when your body has been through far worse. But body image issues are still issues, even if they’re not as destructive as cancer.

      • Noah Brand says:

        To be fair, I didn’t take it as dismissive. As Mr. Cerovski points out, he and I are struggling with similar issues and there are guys who’ve got it worse than both of us. That’s the poisonous aspect of self-hate, based on one’s body or anything else: it’s completely independent of objective reality. Sure, whatever troubles you have, someone else has got it worse, but that doesn’t solve your own troubles, does it? I don’t have to be the world’s fattest man, or even the second-fattest, to feel like I’m too fat.

        • Yeah, I am white, a male, live in a first world country but my depression was painful and debilitating, as I’m sure starving in a third world country would be too. I think people place too much emphasis on the situation of a person without realizing how it affects them, you can see this when the “emo’s” are insulted for being middle class n “acting like they have something to be sad about”. Thing is whilst it may not appear that their life sucks, they can have a heavy depression with a lot of pain, it doesn’t really matter what their life situation is like if they have major issues with their mental health to deal with. Some could say my life is perfect compared to others even in my darkest days, but that didn’t change the fact I wanted to die and was in a lot of pain.

  82. Valter Viglietti says:

    Veeery well done, Noah! Kudos! 🙂
    Since someone else said it better than me, here are his words:

    “Be who you are
    and say what you feel,
    because those who mind don’t matter
    and those who matter don’t mind.”

    (Dr. Seuss)

  83. Jameseq says:

    To add further to how different people viewed the photos.
    the ‘im done being ashamed’ photo was a great photo on two counts for me.

    1. NB is well posed. It is a great photo.
    2. The photo caused sexual arousal in me. It was the only photo in the shoot that generated arousal.

  84. Deanna Ogle says:

    You are amazing. This takes such courage, such resolution, and such determination to look Insecurity in the face and tell it to go to hell.

    I guess I knew that men might deal with insecurities as far as weight, but the idea that men struggle with the full suite of body image issues just as much as women is not talked about enough. We all deal with them. And you just hog-tied it and owned it! Wow.

    Amazing. I admire that kind of courage.

  85. Amethyst says:

    After years of hating my own body image, and still trying to do something about it mentally and physically, it never once occurred to me that men could have the same issues. What you’ve done is astounding and one hell of a punch. Way to own it! I don’t know that I would have that strength.

  86. Noah, good on you man.

    You’re just a normal dude.

  87. I support having a healthy body image, including the acceptance of one’s own body as it is, not just how you want it to be. I think people who struggle with that and find a way to reject shame can be an inspiration to others, and praise that comes their way is well-deserved. I don’t consider myself especially prudish when it comes to nude bodies. Having seen the photos of Noah, I’m neither disgusted, nor inclined to insult or mock anything he revealed. Despite all this, something about this doesn’t feel quite right. I still feel like I can’t quite put my finger on it (teed up an easy one for anyone who wants to take a whack — oops, there’s another) but here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

    * These photos didn’t run on a personal blog. They ran on a multi-author business blog (meaning it’s a business, not that it’s about business), for which the subject of the photos is the Editor in Chief. The CEO and quite a few of the staff/volunteers for said blog are women. I don’t think any of them are likely to follow suit (follow birthday suit?), but if they did, I have a feeling the comments would be less unanimously of the “How brave” variety. What would the hit on Lisa’s credibility be if she did the exact same thing, posting a series of tasteful, non-erotic nudes themed around the CEO’s journey to body acceptance?

    * The photos weren’t anonymous. I’ve seen other sites where everyday people anonymously share nude photos of themselves, and appreciate how heartening it can be for everyday people to see what other everyday people look like naked. When such photos are attached not only to names, but a leadership position of a community other people are part of (or know about), it seems at least a little exhibitionistic, regardless of the personal journey involved. “GMP? Is that the site with the naked Editor in Chief?”

    * I don’t think there was anything sexual about the pics, and I thought they were tastefully done as such things go, but something is weird or off to me that the compliments and kudos for bravery that he has received seem more or less conditioned on the photos being completely asexual. That is, if even one picture showed him erect or semi-erect, that probably would have been enough to lump him in with the Brett Favres and Anthony Weiners of the world. I’m not saying I missed such a picture (please, Noah, don’t fill in that gap), but this mass acceptance and celebration of his body in the comments seems predicated on presenting himself as completely sexless. I think anything overtly sexy about it, like if he’d had an athletic build, or included a partial erection shot, or the captions had been flirty instead of about rejecting shame, would have been roundly condemned. The message I therefore take as a man is less about body acceptance, and more like the best way to earn the affection and admiration of women is to desexualize my body.

    So I don’t know. I’m still trying to make up my mind about this one. I’m sure Noah shouldn’t be shamed for his body, but I’m not sure posting nude photos in the workplace is a necessary step on the path to self-acceptance. For sure it took balls (the metaphorical kind) to do, so I can’t knock the courage aspect of it. I just wish I had seen it this morning instead of being one of the last things I saw before I went to bed last night, since it kept showing up in my dreams. Damn you, Noah.

    • Noah Brand says:

      Nudity does not necessarily have to be sexual, as I’m sure you’re aware. That it so often is assumed to be is one of the societal assumptions that bugs me. That said, what I was trying to do with these shots was walk a fine line; not really desexualized, but not phony soft-focus flattering-angle suck-in-the-gut sexualized, either. The idea is that this is what my body really looks like to my lovers, one of whom was the lady with the camera. No more attractive than it is in real life, but no less so, either. I notice there have been a few comments on this post from women who evidently dig the sort of thing I’ve got going on, for whatever that’s worth.

  88. Hi Noah,
    I want to THANK YOU for being SO OPEN. I work with people who have body image issues and I’m so happy to see someone really open up. I am running this campaign called “Bath Talk” where women are getting into the bathtub and talking about how they feel about themselves so that we can expose what’s really going on. I help people learn to love themselves from where they are at today. If they want to make changes that’s totally understandable however I teach them to do things in loving healthy ways and to appreciate their body for all it does for them. Thank you so much and if you ever want to see the Bath Talk videos (bodyliberator on YouTube) or may be open to doing one I would be honored! 🙂 Bonnie Gayle

  89. Noah, have you heard of Aliaa Elmahdy and the #nudephotorevolutionary?

  90. You should be an inspiration to men everywhere. You are strong and solid and steady and beautiful and GOOD ON YOU FOR THESE PICTURES!!!! And good on you for coming to a sense of self peace with your body. Your lovers have good taste. I wonder if I could talk my man (very similar body type) into letting me take some of him like this….

  91. CajunMick says:

    The first that came to my mind when I saw your pictures was, “Man, that guys got balls!”
    You do. We have photographic proof.

    I think you are very, vey brave person. Good job.

  92. Copyleft says:

    You’ll be glad to hear I was able to contain my lust. And they say there are no Good Men any more!

  93. I am a small, dancer-style woman and have been a fitness trainer for over 12 years. Previously I have dated other fitness trainers. Now I am in the best relationship of my life with a man whose build is very much like yours. He is sexy and wonderful—I crave and adore him. Not sure if he reads posts on this website…guess we will find out. 🙂

    Best wishes to you and all of us who want to enjoy and celebrate ourselves as we really are…

  94. Jasbear says:

    Fantastic! There are only two logical choices with body image: change it or accept your own beauty. The middle is mostly just harmful to your self esteem. I’m 5’10” and 300#. I choose to eat the way I do and not exercise, therefore I’ve chosen this body. After I accepted myself the way I am I never had trouble getting a date. Let’s face it, there is nothing sexier than a person who is secure and confident!

  95. Thank you for this!

  96. Now that you are stark naked…what do you want to say?

  97. You are a man after my heart. Viva Noah!!

  98. Admire the courage. It’s quite tough being an overweight person in society, and I don’t think people just how tough it can be for overweight MEN. Not much is actually said on it, and I myself suffer a lot of body image issues because of my weight.

    Bravo

  99. Jameseq says:

    As I only post headless pics, I am another who applauds your bravery in posting these pics on the web.
    The photos labelled, “Im done being ashamed” and “…hey look, a kitty”, I feel captured your body and your essence the best

    • Jameseq says:

      I feel captured your body
      what i mean by that is, because photography is 2D medium. A pose that looks okay to the eyes, often needs to be adjusted so that it photos well

  100. Kudos to you Noah. Very brave act and honest words to go along with your pics. I didn’t realize you actually be literally stark naked.

  101. can’t get enough of these pics. your sexiness is palpable, noah. and i think you answered your own question as to how to solve these issues. honest acceptance, starting with yourself. 🙂

  102. Mark Neil says:

    I’m a fair bit bigger than you, but I do love the feel of being nekid. That said, I don’t think I’m ready for your level of commitment to punching away the body image issues. I sorta wish I was. Very commendable.

  103. But what if you’re allergic to kitties?

  104. I took my first nude ‘selfies’ about twelve years ago. It really revolutionized my self-image. Good going, dude.

  105. Very well done, Noah. Amazing pictures along with a fantastic read. Thank you for sharing your lovely body.

  106. ozymandias says:

    You look great, Noah. 🙂 It’s really brave of you to post these pictures up here for everyone to see, and I hope they show some people what real, non-Photoshopped people look like naked.

  107. Hey, wir könnten alle viel sagen/schreiben, aber wenn du das vielleicht auf Englisch schreiben würdest…

    Dude, we can all say lots about this, but if you’d do it in English….
    Also, what’s this guy whining about? Anyone who is unhealthy is portrayed negatively in the media, so start exercising and stop being unhealthy and feeling sorry about it! And the ladies are right, women have it more difficult than men. Fat balding men can score hot chicks in beer commercials….not so much the other way around.

  108. Because beer commercials are really valid representations of real life I’m sure. There are movies with large women + smaller, stereotypical hot men….

Trackbacks

  1. […] For more on nudity and body image, read Noah Brand’s “I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It” […]

  2. […] My body is a testament to high testosterone. I have a body type one sees a lot: male pattern baldness, plenty of body hair, builds both muscle and fat very easily. You see guys like me all the time, with our wide shoulders and wider beer guts. Burly sonsabitches, often rocking the shaved-head-and-beard combo. It is not, it’s fair to say, a body type that is highly lauded by media culture.I didn’t always look like this. When I was a teenager, I was so skinny I won awards for dressing as Jack Skellington, which sounds like a joke and isn’t. When I was twenty, I dressed as Nightwing for a costume contest, and the woman MCing the show called me “the reason spandex was invented.”  […]

  3. […] man who impressed me most recently is Noah Brand who wrote an article, I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It. He basically outlined a list of things about himself that society would consider not sexy: male […]

  4. […] (via I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It — The Good Men Project) […]

  5. […] This isn’t going to be another matter-of-fact summary of the Master Blaster’s bona fides.  The story of Joe Weider’s rise from first-generation Jewish immigrant anonymity in Montreal to exercise mogul-dom has been documented extensively elsewhere, most notably in the Weider brothers’ autobiography Brothers of Iron, which is filled with the sort of selective memories and self-aggrandizing anecdotes you’d expect in such a source, as well as in  Muscle, Smoke & Mirrors, Randy Roach’s sprawling, shambolic weightlifting history. Instead, I’d like to address Weider’s invaluable contribution to the late 20th-century problematization of the male body. […]

  6. […] burrito.1 The issue in this case, as far as I can tell, concerned full frontal male nudity; the very sight of male genitalia remains abhorrent to all save the most flamboyant male homosexuals, it seems. This conforms with […]

  7. […] I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It (Published May 24, 2012, 4,680 pageviews in February) Noah Brand’s brave stand helped kick off […]

  8. […] issues. Body shame and body image insecurity are stereotyped as women’s problems, but as I know all too well,men suffer from them too, and can benefit from the advice in this article.  —Noah […]

  9. […] with an eating disorder appeared, the new editor-in-chief of the Good Men Project, Noah Brand posed fully nude in what he called “a direct confrontation with body shame.” Brand, who […]

  10. […] I posed nude in May 2012, it was startlingly liberating. Suddenly tens of thousands of people had seen me in the […]

  11. […] body image issues. Noah has previously addressed his own struggles with self-image in “I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It” (warning: exactly what it sounds like). Also appearing will be bodybuilder Gregg Valentino […]

  12. […] will leave you with these ideas to ponder, along with an article I found that is particularly inspiring and made me want to start this post with a big gushy note […]

  13. […] When the Sydney Morning Herald thought of people confronting the male body image issues, who else would come to mind than our own Editor-in-Chief, Noah Brand, who was bold enough to bare it all in his post, I’m Stark Naked, Deal With It. […]

  14. […] of The Good Men Project, appeared naked on his site – the results of which can be seen here – in a bid to confront his own body shame and spark discussion on the complexities of […]

  15. […] This is a comment by Anthony Tewfik on the post “I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It“. […]

  16. […] I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It […]

  17. […] Danny, in case you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting him, is an active and vocal MRA (Men’s Rights Activist). He is one of two MRA’s we have helping with comment moderation. The other is Peter, who, residing the in the UK, helps with our quest to have comments moderated 24/7. Peter is not the only moderator in the UK. He is assisted by Heather, an active and vocal feminist. In fact, we brought on MRA’s to help moderate precisely to balance out the feminist-leaning moderators who had originally been the first to volunteer. Danny had run-ins with our EIC, Noah Brand, long before No Seriously, What About teh Menz merged into GMP. Noah is now the first to proclaim what a valuable member of the community Danny is. Danny recently ran the awesome section on Male Body Image, for which Noah bared all. […]

  18. […] admit it; I found Noah Brand’s photo spread kind of hot, so I thought I would try it at home. I asked my 50-year-old slightly […]

  19. […] recently, there was a fantastic post at The Good Men Project called “I’m Stark Naked: deal with it”, in which a totally average looking guy talks about his body image. The post is illustrated with […]

  20. […] I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It Share this!TwitterFacebookLinkedInStumbleUponDiggRedditEmailLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Filed under body composition, body image and tagged beliefs, body composition, body image, health, individuality, quote, self-esteem, shame | Leave a comment […]

  21. […] Zu dem Thema könnte ich natürlich viel sagen, aber vermutlich nicht so, dass ihr es verstehen würdet. Außer natürlich: Männern geht es nicht anders. […]

  22. […] I recently came across a blogger who embodies the opposite of everything I believe in. Post. […]

  23. […] of! Here is Noah Brand naked. Isn’t he sexy? I think he’s sexy. Apparently he is a sex symbol in Australia now! Noah […]

  24. […] This is a comment by Brian Levene on the post “I’m Stark Naked: Deal With It“. […]

  25. […] you see our Editor-in-Chief Noah Brand posing bare as the day he was born for our series on body […]

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