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How to Shower in a Public Shower Without Fear or Embarrassment

Updated on February 14, 2017
btrbell profile image

Randi is a mom, grandma, and writer. She has lived in 2 different countries, 5 states, and 10 different cities!

He's not so shy but he doesn't really like being watched!
He's not so shy but he doesn't really like being watched! | Source

Just get past it?

The best way to handle this issue would be to just "get past it." Unfortunately, that is not a viable option for some people. If you can get over your fear or embarrassment of being seen in the buff, you wouldn't have to worry about this article. But if you are one of the many who prefer to keep their "privates" private, my goal is to help you find a way to participate in the activities that your fear has kept you from. Here are a few tips:

Some of the reasons why people don't want to be seen naked

Although it is not unusual to be embarrassed by your body,iIt isn't embarrassment, it ican simply be modesty. There are people who feel that they don't want to share their nudity with everyone. But more often than not, it is our poor self-image that is not strong enough to support our comfort level in nudity. Whether we are overweight, out of shape, short, tall, thin or not, we find fault with ourselves and assume that others will find it too. In some cases, there are more extensive, underlying reasons to be embarrassed. Many of them are based around physical aberrations. It can be something as mild as a beauty mark or scar or something a bit bigger like an amputee, an ostomy or a mastectomy.

There are people that are embarrassed by what they consider to be imperfections, such as:

  • inverted nipples,
  • a third nipple
  • overly large or small breasts
  • large or small genitals
  • Too saggy
  • acne
  • unwanted hair
  • asymmetrical

And the list goes on. You name it and there will be someone with a real or perceived reason to choose to cover-up.

Cover it up!

Men's Long 30" Terry Velour Shower or Bath Towel Wrap 100% Cotton (Black)
Men's Long 30" Terry Velour Shower or Bath Towel Wrap 100% Cotton (Black)

These are pretty much the best because they can double as a towel, look natural when you walk around in them and are ok if they get wet!

 

Practical advice for showering in a public shower

I am not here to lecture you or tell you that everybody is beautiful. That's all well and good and if you are of that opinion, you don't need me. Instead I am here to give you some practical advice!I have spent the past 40 years covering up without having to give up activities that were clearly out of my comfort zone. It started in high school. Those were the days when we had to parade through the girls' locker room naked in order to pick up a towel/bathing suit. After we showered, we had to parade back out and show that we were clean enough to go in the pool. That was a tough one because a cover up was not permitted until after the shower. I had three ways to get around that one. Most days, I got to class very early. I was able to get through the ordeal before too many people came in.If I was unable to get there early, I would hang back and come in late. There were also fewer people at that point. My third method was what I call the "Magic M" This was back in the 70s. About the only way a girl could get out of swimming was if she was menstruating. That meant that if a girl came through the line, fully clothed and said "M" to the teacher, she was automatically excused. Magic! My next encounter with public showers was in a college dorm. And, after that, the health club. I got very adept at gathering all my things in the proper order for a most expedient cover up. Again, timing is crucial. I would watch and pick the less populated times. I would make sure that I had all my gear on me. If I am unable to avoid a crowd, this is what I do.

Steps to avoid being seen naked

  1. Avoidance always works! Try to arrange your schedule so that you can shower at home.
  2. Most locker rooms have some private showers. Even if you have to wait for a bit, try to always use those.
  3. Invest in a good towel wrap, robe or even swim shorts.
  4. Pack your bag so that you can reach everything quickly and easily that way you won't be standing in the raw while struggling to find your undies.
  5. If you are not able to get dressed in the shower area, you can get dressed discretely under your robe or a long t-shirt. The trick for that is to remove/add only one item at a time. Don't start on anything else until the previous article of clothing is firmly in place

How not to call attention to yourself

It's very important to remember that people see what you want them to see. There have been many articles on this and magicians are the greatest masters of illusion. You can learn how to call the attention off your naked body by distracting the people around you. Draw their attention elsewhere until you are comfortably covered!

A little subterfuge!

While this may seem like a lot of effort, please keep in mind that once you get in the habit of covering up, you won't believe what you had been missing. There is no longer a reason to avoid the gym, or a trip with joint showers, living in a dorm or living with room-mates. Life is short. You shouldn't have to allow your embarrassment or fear to keep you from enjoying it.

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      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      Interesting hub. I'm a member of LA Fitness gym and I notice that many of the older ladies walk around nude in the locker room. Even in the sauna where the temperature increases rapidly, there are many women sitting and lying down naked. I'm not kidding, some of them have the saggiest boobs and don't even shave their pubic hairs. It hangs so low that you can help but notice. Personally, I find this disrespectful and rude. I do agree with your points that there are many women who might be shy or embarrassed because of their body image, but this is not the case for every woman. I'm in very good shape and when I shower at the gym, I keep my bathing suit on at all times and when I change my wet clothes, I keep a towel underneath.

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you for reading and commenting, lovedoctor! Yes, even when I was tiny and proud of my body, I wasn't comfortable flaunting it and I totally agree with you, I DO NOT want to see a lot of what I do see at the club!

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 4 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      interesting article. People in Malaysia do not shower in public. I think Korea people love sauna, shower in hot warm spa. Yes, i do agree that shy people try to avoid this issue. Voted up

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, peachpurple. I appreciate your stopping by and your comments and vote up!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It really is an uncomfortable situation for almost anyone. I'm not sure I would describe it as embarrassing for me, but it is most definitely not a comfortable time. I doubt that are many of us who really want to be seen naked in a public setting. :)

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      It's really funny,Bill but when I set out to write this, I saw myself as the exception but now I'm thinking I'm probably more of the rule! Thanks for stopping by! I hope Bev is continuing to feel better.

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Oh, Randi, I remember the agony of gym class in high school. And, I have to say, in all honesty, I am no more grown up about public showers than I was way back when. I enjoyed your article, as it reignited my anxiety ridden memories and made me realize I am so glad I am no longer a teenager who endures the humiliation of embarrassment in the locker room showers. Your piece also makes me realize that there is no activity I would miss enough to ever subject myself to public nudity! I wouldn't want to inflict that on anyone. LOL

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      My hat is off to your article....but that's all I'm taking off at this point!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Amy. See that wasn't so hard to read, right?!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Good one, Perspycacious! Thanks for stopping by!

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      You are so right! Personally, i find that some people seem to LOVE walking around naked in front of others...can you say exhibitionists?

      personally - i have a beautiful pool where i live, and yet - i still prefer to sit in my back yard when i'm half naked - it's strange..

      i used to be in amazing shape - i mean an 8-pack, from gymnastics and coaching and teaching aerobics, and still - i could always find a toilet stall to change...

      Food for thought: I think men have it even harder? lol...excuse pun..

      LOL@Perspy...

      up and sharing, my friend!

      have an awesome amazing day!

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Leslie! Yes, when I was younger, we had our own pool and I really loved the whole privacy factor. I do use the pool here but only for short periods of time, usually at off hours and when it is too hot to be outside! I also used to be proud of my body with ballet and jazz dancing and a great metabolism. I was even the Cheerleading coach. Now I am an endomorph! Thank you for your votes and share, my friend!

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      Then or now doesn't matter to me, I always had a problem walking around with no clothes on. Fortunately, in a Catholic school we had no showers and no swimming pool ;)

      You make some good points and have good advice here btr...nicely done.

      Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Mary. I do appreciate the visit, comments votes and shares. I was just about to hop over to your hubs. How are things going for you?

      Randi

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      Okay. The Apprentice Program is a challenge for sure. How about you? I try to find topics I think I can write on as the Exclusives seem to have dried up for me.

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      I totally agree. I write to the title and not to my original ideas!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      ....well the last time I showered in pubic , some smart ass said 'hey, there's a button on a fur coat' lol lol - and me said - never again , will I shower in public (yes, don't worry I left the 'l' out) lol lol

      sending sincere warm wishes to you dear Randi from a sunny but cold day at lake erie time ontario canada 11:25am but it's February 1st now and 13 days away from when I smuggle you onboard a Caribbean cruise .....or is it 'snuggle.'

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Well, my friend, Colin, I bet a caribbean cruise is sounding mighty good right about now! thank you for always being here with your support and fun comments! You are so appreciated!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      ..... yes you are much appreciated, respected and admired too, Randi.

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, Colin!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Ah, I had this problem as a teen and the looks of my body had nothing to do with it ( I was a cheerleader). I was just shy and my showers were quick, and though I lived through it I never liked it. Everyone was in a hurry though so that made it a little easier. Even at my age now I can't say I would like to shower with an audience, lol.

    • carozy profile image

      carozy 4 years ago from San Francisco

      I have never felt comfortable walking around naked in gym locker rooms. I do my best to cover up, dry, and change as quickly as possible.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Thank you, carozy for reading and commenting. It's so funny. When I wrote this hub, I thought I was the exception. Now I see that I am the norm!

    • profile image

      jfj989 3 years ago

      I don't mean to be rude, but this all sounds so prudish. Calling other women "rude" just for not shaving their pubic hair or for having sagging breasts? These are normal parts of the female body! It is rude to expect someone to cover themselves just because you are too sensitive and prudish to be in their presence!

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      jfj989, I am a bit confused by your comment. This article does not call anyone rude for how they look. This article speaks about what to do if you are too shy or embarrassed to be seen naked in public. No judgements here, nor I am saying that you can't dress how you choose.

    • profile image

      Cheryl 3 years ago

      I had a very similar situation to you with gym class showers. The gym teachers at my junior high and high school seemed to go out of their way to make us be naked as much as possible in the locker room.

      After each gym class session we had to undress at our lockers and walk buck naked through the locker room to the shower-room. After we finished showering we had to line up (still naked) and wait for the teacher to call our names one-by-one, and when your name was called you would walk up to her and you had to turn around so that she could see that we were wet allover. Then she would make us dry-off right there and then throw the towel into a big hamper, and then you could walk naked back to your locker and get dressed.

      All of the gym teachers had the exact same routine for us.

      Some of us hated having to parade around like that. Some didn't seem to care one-way-or-another, and some girls seemed to love parading around like that.

      At my gym we are required to take a nude soap shower before we are allowed to enter the pool. It doesn't particularly bother me now at age 38, but I still don't parade around more than I have to.

    • btrbell profile image
      Author

      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Wow, Cheryl! I am quite a bit older than you. I would have thought this behavior stopped before you got to high school! It's humiliating, isn't it?

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting!

    • profile image

      Cheryl 3 years ago

      No, my school system had that policy up until the mid to late 1990s. I have since found out that in the late 90's the ACLU basically made it illegal to force students to have to shower naked in front of one another. However, my 14 year old niece says that her school still makes the girls take nude showers before swimming classes this year. But she says that it doesn't seem to bother most girls.

      It wasn't just my high school that made us shower, we had to in junior high as well.

      I've heard that some schools did away with the showering rule as early as the 1970s, but, as I mentioned, some schools were still requiring it in the 90's.

      ...............................................................

      I don't think that jfj989 was saying that you were being rude, I think that she was referring to a post made by lovedoctor926?

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Ah, thank you, Cheryl! I didn't understand what she was referring to. Now I not only see it but feel bad because i pretty much went right along with it. Thank you for pointing that out.

    • profile image

      Cheryl 3 years ago

      Sorry, I forgot to answer your question where you asked if the whole shower and locker room routine was humiliating? It wasn't so much the showering in front of my classmates part that was so bad. The worst part was having to walk up nude to my fully clothed gym teachers and having to have them check to see if I was wet allover or not, and then hand me a towel. One of the gym teachers in particular was also my health class teacher a few periods later in the day. Awkward!!!

    • btrbell profile image
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      Randi Benlulu 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      I agree, Cheryl! They did the same thing at my high school. Luckily, we didn't have a pool in junior high!

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