If burlesque shows or strip clubs have taught us anything, it’s that everyone can enjoy a sexy striptease performance. No matter your gender or sexuality, watching someone slowly tease the audience, as layer upon layer comes off, is tantalizing and sexy. And one of the major things that makes it so sexy is how the women exude total confidence. It takes quite the set of ovaries to get up on a stage, sparkled out to the nines, and get either naked or, in the case of burlesque, almost naked.
Because I’ve always loved burlesque, I took a burlesque class a couple years ago. I learned some pretty exciting things like how to make and wear fancy pasties, bounce my butt in a way that looks pretty awesome when rocking fringe, and how to move my hips. OK, the moving of my hips proved a little difficult for me, because according to my yoga instructor, my hips aren’t open. Like, ever. But that didn’t stop me from working what I had learned into a striptease for my partner, which, according to him, was hot.
While he said it was hot, I felt sort of silly. I felt like an imposter, as I see myself as “cute” instead of “sexy.” But because I don’t believe in giving up and I know I have many stripteases ahead of me, I spoke with The English Muffin, the co-owner and producer of Frostease Burlesque, on how to striptease without feeling ridiculous.
Here’s what she had to tell me.
1. Realize That The Audience Wants You There
“The most important thing that I try to remember before I go on stage — even if the stage is your bedroom or living room — is the audience WANTS to be there,” says The English Muffin. It’s true! Your partner wants you there, they want to see you tease and excite them as you strip. If you keep that in mind, you can cancel out the silly factor in your head.
2. Be Yourself
My major struggle with doing a striptease is that I feel like I’m putting on airs by trying to be sexy. The English Muffin says don’t do that: “If you’re honest and don’t try to be something you’re not, you can’t go wrong.” Basically, infusing humor and bits of the real you in there is key. It will also make you feel less like a fraud.
3. You Don’t Have To Move The Whole Time
While a striptease does seem like it calls for a lot of movement and gyrating, you don’t have to continuously keep moving in order to seduce. I mean, just think about what you can do with just a look.
“There’s a lot of power in stillness,” says The English Muffin. “You don't have to move all the time. It's so amazing to find that spot in the music where you stop moving, hold a pose, and let your audience just look at you, really look at you, without movement to distract from how incredible you look.”
4. Find Your Inner Confidence
As The English Muffin told me, she too can be critical about her body, but she just reminds herself that “hundreds of people out there paid money to watch me get naked and are there to see me succeed.” It’s with that realization that she feels like she can do anything and her body-positivity soars. She finds confidence in the fact that she’s performing something that people want to see. Any concerns you have about your body become secondary when you harness that confidence.
5. Embrace Your Sexuality
You are sexy! You are hot! You are delectable! You're just like Dita von Teese! And man, oh man, you can you pull off sequin pasties! You’re a sexual being and once you put any other thoughts out of your head, you’ll be able to striptease the night away without even the slightest fear that you might look a little silly. And if you feel that creeping into your consciousness, have yourself a giggle. There’s nothing wrong with laughing. Laughing is sexy AF, too.
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