The Palomino Club Blog

All-nude ladies return to Playboy with "Naked is Natural" issue

February 17, 2017  |   8:53 am

On October 13, 2015, Playboy announced that the March 2016 issue of America’s famous print magazines would not feature all-nude ladies. Times change, as they say.

To say that it was a shock would be an understatement. For decades, Playboy magazine has been a centerpiece for the celebration of sexual liberation in a country known for prudishness. Its political articles have repeatedly been lauded for their intellectual merits. Journalists around the world have praised the Playboy interview for their no-holds barred approach. For many men, “I read it for the articles” has been no mere excuse, but a statement of truth.

The move was clearly an attempt to expand the brand’s reach. When Playboy ruled the shelves men kept away from their boys, and the drawers boys hid issues within from their parents prying eyes, millions of subscribers were served every month. The appeal of shapely, all-nude ladies is hard to deny. But that was then, and the Playboy of today struggles to hold around 700,000 subscribers. The Internet exists, and if you want pictures or even videos of women, in or out of clothes, doing anything you want to see, you can probably find it.

Removing nudity from the magazine known for displaying women in all their natural glory was a risk, a grab for more advertisers. A similar policy led to a Safe For Work app and website, which did see improved fortunes. Within twelve months the magazine went through two editorial directors, with staff shake-ups happening up and down the whole publication.

At one point, the acting CEO of Playboy Enterprises, Ben Kohn even declared that there would be no reversal on this brave new direction. Unfortunately, the magazine’s gamble did not see positive results. Removing nudity from the magazine did nothing to slow down the flight of subscribers.

And so, on February 13th:

Welcome back, Playboy. We know you meant well. We’re just as excited about the return of all-nude ladies to your pages as you are.