Is Body Paint Considered Clothing

Many have wondered whether body paint is covering enough to be considered clothing in such a way that one cannot be arrested for public nudity. This question has become popular especially around holidays such as Halloween, but often arises in connection with art projects, political protests, and even sporting events. As with so many things in law, the answer is not clear.

Body paint when clothes fall into gray areas. Most state and city anti-nudity laws are silent on body paint, leaving law enforcement in a difficult position to make judgment calls. This can be particularly difficult given the morale of the constitutional issues that may be involved with body paint and public nudity. For example, on several occasions protesters have painted themselves to express messages on political issues.

How Can I Become A Body Painter?

on the contrary, the naked body enters the media of political communication; a very protected form of free speech.

For example, in 2000 a Chicago woman who painted herself resembling a tiger in circus protest and was arrested for public viciousness, even though she also wore underwear and pasties, created a backlash against public criticism. On the other hand, in 2011, New York City officials allowed artist Andy Golub to paint nude models in public as long as they were wearing bikini bottoms, and this requirement only applied during the day.

However, most state and local anti-nudity laws are usually left vague. Many such laws talk about “exposed” body parts to define what constitutes nudity, but what is something that is exposed if it is covered in paint? However, some have gone so far as to describe nudity, such as insisting that one should not distinguish the texture of body parts under cover, or even define the types of materials that can be used.

How to Choose Your Body Paint

Although not much studied, small surveys have found that a large proportion of those surveyed for body paint are believed to be clothing for legal purposes. For example, in 1995, a student-led study at Missouri Western State College involved displaying images of models dressed in nude, painted, and dressed in lingerie to study participants. In this study, subjects did not make any significant differences between the painted and dressed models when asked to rate the appropriateness of the images. Similarly, after officials at a Washington Nationals game told a shirtless man he had had “indecent exposure,” ESPN conducted a survey of Nationals fans who voted that the completely topless man was matched between 54 and 82 percent of the time. that, but found that men wearing paint on their bare chests were deemed acceptable more than 90 percent of the time and should be allowed in the game.

So while there are no clear cut answers about body paint and public nudity, some general guidelines can greatly reduce the risk of being caught. Obviously, wearing underwear and (in the case of women) pasties is the most likely way to avoid indecent exposure because the real areas of concern should be hidden. In addition, if paint becomes a part of communication, especially related to political matters or artistic expression, it may be more well protected than something done just to titillate. If you experience problems with body paint and public nudity (or preferably previously), contact a lawyer immediately for assistance.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *