Is it the end of Page 3 and the flesh-baring era?

By all means show me a fine-looking man – but please keep him clothed

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The Independent Online

It’s the end of the road for nudity and skimpy dressing as a way to get attention and gain attraction. We are so used to seeing people with their kit off (or as good as) that we’ve got nowhere else to go with it. Everyone has been naked or skimpily dressed in public by now. It’s time to redefine the rules of (un)dressing for sexual attention.

The end of page 3 as pondered this week by Rupert Murdoch is one sign of the end of the flesh-baring era. Much as I hate to agree with Murdoch, he hit on something when he said: “Aren’t beautiful young women more attractive in at least some fashionable clothes?”

There is traction in his comments. Of course, Murdoch did leave out all of the other things that make young women beautiful – their personalities, their humour, their warmth, their intelligence, their ambition. But yes, some fashionable clothes really help a lot. Or, more to the point, some flattering clothes. And really they’re the only place we can go to next. We’ve got increasingly nude in public – that’s both celebrities and people on the street, snapping photos of themselves and getting skimpy on nights out. How can we get more naked than naked? We can’t. We’ve pushed it as far as we can go. Dressing is the new undressing.

The human body is a wonderful, natural thing. We should enjoy what we’ve got from head to toe. This isn’t about fear of the flesh. This isn’t about slut-shaming either. It’s about a saturation point on nudity for both men and women. Every time I see a famous man caught out Skyping with his Christmas turkey pointing in the air in a bid to look sexy, I laugh. It’s not sexy! It’s ridiculous, it’s boring, it’s done. Show me a fine-looking man dressed well – now I’m intrigued. The end of the “bits on show” era is not a question of immorality. It’s a question of ineffectiveness. We’ve seen so much flesh that we’re not phased and we’re not titillated. If you want to look special and sexy, put some clothes on for a change.

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