Boomerang nude GIFs are the latest sexting trend

A buffet of Boomeranged nudity.
A buffet of Boomeranged nudity.
Image: bob al-greene / mashable 

Last week, while I was brushing my teeth before bed, my phone flashed up with a voice note sent by a close friend. “Rachel!” my friend yelled down the phone with some urgency. “The days of the dick pic are gone. I can’t tell you how many dick GIFs I’m getting.”

The next day, I launched an investigation into whether or not people are *actually* sending “dick GIFs”. What I discovered was this: people are sending Boomeranged solicited nudes to one another. 

And it’s not just dick pics. It’s also butt GIFs, boob GIFs, and a veritable buffet of moving nudity. According to the people I’ve spoken to, a nude Boomerang offers something that a pic does not: a flirty bit of movement. 

Boomerang — an Instagram owned app — allows you to create “mini-videos” by capturing 10 photos and sticking them together to create a looping GIF. You can use the app to create Boomerangs without sharing them publicly and you can save them to your phone and send them via a messaging app. 

Ann (not her real name), who works as an editor, told me she started making nudes on Boomerang — Instagram’s app which lets you make “mini videos that loop back and forth” — about a year ago. Ann says she feels that Boomeranged butt GIFs are “like the flirty wink of nudes.” 

“Most of my nudes focus on my butt and the light/mirror situation in my apartment isn’t great, so I was trying to figure out how to take better ones using the front facing camera,” says Ann. She tried taking a photo by lying on her stomach and taking a pic of her butt over her shoulder. 

“I was struggling a bit to capture the thiccness of my butt because it looked flat.”

“I was struggling a bit to capture the thiccness of my butt because it looked flat,” Ann continues. “And then somewhere along the line — trial and error! — I realised I could do a boomerang to get some motion.” 

She likes Boomerang nudes because they feel “a bit more playful” and fun. “I would feel like an absolute cornball ever taking a video, so Boomerang is like the perfect middle ground,” says Ann. “They’re only like, what, five seconds long at most? So there’s not really pressure to nail a move or anything like that — you can just do something cute and silly.”

A writer who’d prefer to remain anonymous says she’s had nude GIFs made of her consensually. 

“I’m not a big fan of videos being made of me because I think with sound and everything it can get really identifiable,” she says. “But GIFs seem really fun and catch something sexy and short.”

She says one of her current sexual partners has, with her consent, used Boomerang to capture “little moments” during sex. “I’m into kink and he has made GIFs of me being hit on the ass with a flogger, for example. Or a moment during sex.

“I’ve sent them on to others instead of nudes,” she adds. “Like, you can’t see my face and people are always really into it.”

How to save your Boomerangs in the app without posting publicly.

How to save your Boomerangs in the app without posting publicly.

Image: rachel thompson / boomerang

I ask what the appeal of sending a gif is over, say, sending a still image. “I think it feels more real in some way too, because of the short movement,” she says. “It’s like you’re in the room a bit more.” 

While Boomerang is being used for solicited and consensual nudes, it’s perhaps unsurprising that people are also sending unsolicited Boomeranged nudes. 

Erin, who’d prefer to be identified by her first name only, says she received a Boomeranged gif of a penis after going on a date with a guy. “I’ve had some guy send me a helicopter dick Boomerang once and needless to say there was not another date. Fucking gross,” she tells me. “Helicopter dick alone is terrifying.” (Just as an FYI, the term “helicopter dick” is defined by Urban Dictionary as “a sexual display wherein a male gyrates his pelvis so that his flaccid penis whirls in a radial manner like the blades of a helicopter.”)

“Is anyone ever ready for a helicopter dick Boomerang nude?”

Erin says they had started to get “a little sexy” during texting, but “not so much that I was 100 percent helicopter dick nude.” 

“But is anyone ever ready for a helicopter dick Boomerang nude?” she asks. Good question. 

She replied to the dick gif saying “WTF” and the sender then accused her of “killing the mood.” 

“But seriously — how am I the one that killed the mood?” she muses. 

If you’re sharing nude Boomerangs with a consenting partner, there are a few things to bear in mind.  Instagram — which owns Boomerang — has a strict policy on the sharing of nude or sexual content. That rule applies to content showing sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully naked buttocks. The policy also applies to some photos of women’s nipples — with the exception of photos showing post-mastectomy scarring, active breastfeeding, or images of breasts where the nipples are censored by blurring or pixelation. So, sharing your nude Boomerangs to your Instagram Stories or grids would be in breach of Instagram’s policies.

Instagram has a section in its Help Centre detailing how to share photos safely. This section also contains advice on what to do if someone is threatening to “share things you want to keep private.” In instances where you feel you’re being threatened with revenge porn, Instagram asks people to report the profile of the person making the threat — and if you don’t have an Instagram account, you can use this form to submit a report. If you’re receiving unsolicited nudes that you believe are in breach of Instagram’s community guidelines and terms of use, you can report the sender using Instagram’s reporting tool. 

In this day and age, it often feels like no app is immune from hacks and data breaches. As with any app that’s used to create images or videos, it’s important to think about your own digital safety and privacy. 

Stay safe out there.

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I sexted with a robot, and so should you

Don't worry: Slutbot won't ask you for nudes.
Don’t worry: Slutbot won’t ask you for nudes.
Image: juicebox

At first blush, getting horny with a bot over text doesn’t sound like the most intuitive way of spicing up your sex life. But online sex coaching app and SMS service Juicebox believes it can do just that for users through the newly released Slutbot.

The free chatbot — which you can start sexting right now by sending “slutbot” to 415-650-0395 — is designed to get you more comfortable with dirty talk. And ideally, to spark a thirst you’d never felt comfortable exploring before.

Slutbot was born out of the most common request the Juicebox team received from users of their iOS app: How do you dirty talk? And while it may be a little limited in its capabilities, it doesn’t detract from what Slutbot can do for sexting newbies.

“After we got the request repeatedly over several months, it shed light on the fact that, really, what people struggle with in terms of sex and sexuality is communication,” Brianna Rader, Juicebox CEO and founder, told us over the phone. “People often don’t have the language to express their desires. They don’t have the skills. And at Juicebox we believe that the best way to learn is to just do it.”

Despite the fact that research estimates roughly half of adults sext, there’s still a lot of anxiety around doing it “well.” But the dirty talk tips you’d get from, say, Cosmo feel like an antiquated, ineffectual way to bridge the gap between people’s interests and nervousness.

So Juicebox collaborated with erotica writers and sex coaches to make a NSFW chatbot that allows users to explore sexting in a safe space with low stakes. 

“It’s about sharing your whole self and sharing what your truth is, and dirty talk is a great way to do that.”

“Intimacy isn’t just about the physical sex act. It’s about sharing your whole self and sharing what your truth is. And dirty talk is a great way to do that. Having your desires feel accepted can create amazingly powerful sexual experiences,” said Rader. “But if you can’t share your desires, you’re really holding yourself back.”

That’s why Slutbot offers a “Slow & Sensual” or “Hot & Heavy” path, depending on your baseline comfort.  

The first in-house version was all-around a bit more intense and aggressive. But through testing, Juicebox implemented more beginner-friendly failsafes like the “Slow & Sensual” setting, or changing most mentions of genitalia to emoji.

“Sometimes we can forget that people are in totally different places when it comes to dealing with sexual shame,” said Rader. “People who’ve never sexted before might just not want to read the word ‘pussy.'”

Rader, who identifies as a queer female, also embedded inclusivity and consent into Slutbot’s design. Before you even get hot and heavy, Slutbot lets you pick from six different paths based on gender and sexual orientation, including heterosexual, lesbian, gay, or non-binary configurations.

Slutbot does not mess around, but also very much messes around.

Slutbot does not mess around, but also very much messes around.

Image: juicebox

There’s always a safe word, too, so you can back out at any time. The team worked with linguists to create a comprehensive list of negative words and phrases that tell Slutbot to back off. It also takes the opportunity to show users how to say “no” without throwing off the flow. If you use derogatory names with Slutbot like “bitch” or “whore,” for example, it’ll say that those words aren’t really their thing, preferring anything from babe to slut.

Consent is also established in every individual message. So when Slutbot slides into your DMs with an erotic situation, it’ll always throw it back to you after with a question about how you liked it.

“The question format is an important way to model consent, and to show how consent is a great way to have dirty talk,” said Rader. “It also gives the user a chance to practice. You’re not just a passive receiver. We’re trying to make the user practice using their own language too.”

“Consent is a great way to have dirty talk.”

Your response to the situation takes you down a variety of different paths. If you respond enthusiastically to some light BDSM, for example, you can unlock some temperature play (i.e. naughty adventures with ice). 

Rader even suggested trying different sexual orientations than your usual. Because like porn, Slutbot is a kind of interactive erotica that doesn’t always necessarily need to reflect your real-life sexual preferences in order to get you off.

But while Slutbot can offer a certain amount of variability, it’s still a chatbot with preset branching narratives; it doesn’t learn and adapt on its own like AI.

“We know the erotica currently in Slutbot isn’t going to exactly fit everyone’s taste,” Rader said. “But the idea was to make it work for the majority of people, to strike a middle ground.” 

At times — particularly to advanced sexters like myself — Slutbot can feel like talking to a horny version of everyone’s first AIM chatbot, SmarterChild. But Rader hopes that, “as Slutbot grows, we can create more advanced scenes, or cater to different tastes, like maybe even adding a kink version eventually.” 

But for now, Slutbot does exactly what it was meant to do: Get your mind in the gutter. And even a self-described “advanced sexter” like me wound up blushing at her work desk from the things Slutbot said it wanted to do to me.

This slutty chatbot is all about opening you up to new worlds of sexual self discovery. 

Aside from Slutbot, Juicebox is also rolling out another free service: weekly SMS tips from their certified sex coaches. Customized to your gender, orientation, and dating status, the topics range from bondage 101 to different dating styles to talking about your fantasies.

Slutbot wasn’t the hottest sexting exchange I’ve ever had in my life, but it’s not meant to be. I found myself learning even from the moments when Slutbot turned me off. As it turns out, emoji-heavy sexts are a major lady-boner killer for me. So now I know to tell my real-life sexual partners to calibrate their sexts to their own more intense “Hot & Heavy” setting.

This slutty chatbot is all about opening you up to new worlds of sexual self discovery. And hopefully, to more pleasure in the real world as a result.

“Our hope is that Slutbot can model that behavior for people, be a role model, give them language examples,” said Rader. “We just hope that communication skills — being able to truly share their desires — helps people have the sex life and intimacy they want in their lives.”

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Sex ed fails teens by ignoring sexting

The internet has changed how kids learn about sex, but sex ed in the classroom still sucks. In Sex Ed 2.0, Mashable explores the state of sex ed and imagines a future where digital innovations are used to teach consent, sex positivity, respect, and responsibility.


When Johanna Burgos asks rooms of teenagers whether they know someone who has sent a nude picture, about 90 percent of the room always raises their hand. 

“Whether they’re sending the photo or not, they know someone who is sending the photo,” she says. 

Burgos oversees a program that teaches healthy relationships at middle schools in New York City. She uses this story to illustrate one thing: Teenagers need to learn about sexting. 

But they’re not. 

American students are either not learning about sexting in the classroom at all, or the lessons they do receive don’t adequately address the wide spectrum of experiences teens may have.

There’s no comprehensive data showing the number of U.S. school districts that address sexting in sex ed, but several sex educators told Mashable that it’s uncommon, based on their experiences and conversations with school officials. 

Burgos, who works for Day One, which focuses on dating abuse and domestic violence, describes it as “hit or miss.” When she does a workshop on technology, for example, some school administrators ask her not to talk about it at all. Others want her to broach the subject because they hear that students are sending nude photos and spreading rumors. Alternatively, they want to help students figure out if it’s a healthy choice for their relationship or coercive. 

One thing is clear for sex educators, though: Avoiding the subject isn’t the right approach. 

“It can’t be comprehensive sex education if we’re not talking about what’s relevant to our young people, and sexting is a big part of that,” says Brittany McBride, a senior program manager for sexuality education at Advocates for Youth, which partners with schools to provide sex education.

“It can’t be comprehensive sex education if we’re not talking about what’s relevant to our young people, and sexting is a big part of that.” 

Only 24 states and D.C. mandate sex education be taught, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research organization focused on reproductive health and rights. Twenty states require lessons on condoms or contraception while 27 states mandate that abstinence be stressed and 18 states require that students be taught the importance of only engaging in sexual activity when married. None specifically require sexting be taught. 

This haphazard landscape makes it hard for experts to understand and estimate what’s being taught. 

“Some schools will use a list of evidence-based interventions, some schools write their own curriculum. It’s kind of all up in the air. Some don’t have one at all,” explains McBride. 

Schools are also dealing with a relevancy issue. They may not be able to keep up with the changing way teenagers communicate, says Nicole Cushman, the executive director for Answer, a national organization that provides sex ed resources to young people and educators. 

“One of the challenges is that many of the curricula that are in use today were developed in the ‘90s or the early 2000s, before this technology even existed or was very new,” she explains. That means it’s difficult for curricula to stay relevant and evolve because they need to be developed, tested, and refined, before ultimately being taught, she says. “By the time that happens, young people have moved on.” 

The problem with ‘Don’t do it’

Educators may also be taking an overly simplistic approach to the topic. For example, 16-year-old Eka Tawe recalls that the lesson she had on sexting in school was not useful. Her class learned what it was and what some consequences of sexting are, but it felt inadequate. Tawe, who is in 11th grade in New Jersey, felt that while seeming neutral, the lesson positioned sexting as negative and lacked information on why it’s not always bad behavior.

Instead, Tawe hopes that educators address sexting in a way that accounts for both the consequences as well as benefits. 

Educators shouldn’t “make it out to be a bad thing but just precautions that should be taken when deciding whether or not to sext,” Tawe wrote in an email.

Burgos has noticed this, too. “I’ve had schools who have wanted us to tell students that you shouldn’t sext, that it’s a bad idea, and it just shouldn’t be an option,” she explains.

Likewise, the messaging that Cushman tends to see is fear-based and intended to discourage young people from sending sexual texts and images altogether rather than explaining to them that consent has an important role in sexting, too.

That’s not to say that sexting doesn’t come with risks, though. Teens need to understand that they may be breaking laws, says Valerie Sedivy, the acting director of capacity building and evaluation at Healthy Teen Network, a sexual health and education organization. The behavior comes with real consequences that have longterm effects, which is why Sedivy says it’s important for teenagers to learn about the behavior in a school setting. 

“We know it’s not as effective just to tell people ‘don’t do it, don’t do it.’ That’s not helpful because as a person you need to be able to make your own decisions and learn skills to make your own decisions,” Sedivy says. 

Let’s talk about consent

Cushman similarly wants young people to be aware of the legal consequences, but there’s more to it than that. Telling a teenager not to sext because they might be required to register as a child sex offender is not as effective a message as discussing the risks and responsibilities, she says. 

Cushman and Answer encourage educators to frame conversations on sexting around consent. While Answer wants young people to understand that sending a sext comes with risks, and that once they send one, they lose control over where it’s shared, it also emphasizes that the person receiving the text still has the responsibility to make sure they’re not sharing it without the sender’s permission. 

Cushman compares the issue to conversations around sexual assault, explaining that lessons on sexual assault were once primarily directed at girls and included tips such as watching drinks and employing a buddy system. 

“We’ve really managed to evolve our conversations around consent and I think we need to do the same thing about sexting.”  

“We weren’t really saying to boys or young people of all genders ‘You need to respect people’s boundaries, and you need to make sure you get an affirmative yes before you proceed with any kind of sexual activity,’” she explains. 

“We’ve really managed to evolve our conversations around consent and I think we need to do the same thing about sexting.”  

Sexting also connects to key topics such as healthy relationships, bullying, and communication, says Sedivy. She describes a scenario in which someone is asked to send a sext. If this person doesn’t want to provide that, they need the skills to express that while also explaining that they want to preserve the relationship, she explains. On top of that, it’s important to be able to recognize that pressuring a person to send an image isn’t healthy. 

The fear-based approach to sexting isn’t effective for another reason: It doesn’t give teens enough credit. Cushman says that even though sexting is common, teens are mixed about how they feel about the behavior. While many adults think that every teen is sexting and it’s unavoidable, many teens are weary about it, says Cushman. 

“Young people are savvy about technology, much savvier than many adults, and so they do understand often that what they put out there in the digital world has some permanency to it and they don’t always have control over it,” she explains. 

While sexting comes with consequences, such as having an image shared without consent, Cushman doesn’t discount the ways sexting can be a safe behavior. For example, unlike unprotected sex, sexting doesn’t come with the risk of STDs or unintended pregnancies. “It can be a way for young people to express their affection and desire for each other without putting themselves at physical risk, as long as they feel like they’re in a safe and trusting relationship when they do it.” 

For Cushman, this behavior isn’t even that new, which should temper some of the worries that adults may have. 

“Young people have been sending each other sexual messages since forever that used to be in the form of steamy love letters,” she says. 

“The technology has certainly created new challenges because of the speed with which these messages can travel but in a way it’s just giving a new platform for the same behavior that’s always existed, and I think that’s helpful to keep in mind before we start to panic.”

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Great work, internet: Jeff Bezos' alleged sext is a meme now

Looks like Jeff Bezos has used a phone.
Looks like Jeff Bezos has used a phone.
Image: David Ryder / Getty Images

If the National Enquirer is to be believed (idk!), Jeff Bezos sent some pretty gnarly sexts to news anchor Lauren Sanchez. And by “gnarly,” we mean so boring and bad. Jeff Bezos might be good at shaving his head and collecting an enormous amount of your personal data, but he is bad at sexting.

Perhaps the worst line in these alleged sexts is Bezos referring to Sanchez as “alive girl.” “I love you, alive girl,” he reportedly wrote. “I will show you with my body, and my lips and my eyes, very soon.”

There are loads of questions to be asked here, but it’s hard to focus on anything but the word “alive.” Why did Jeff B need to specify Sanchez was alive? Was it an autocorrect error, or is he really that inept? MacKenzie, get your money!

As New York Magazine points out, it’s worth noting that the National Enquirer, a tabloid, is a longtime Trump ally, and Bezos is a longtime Trump nemesis. Did this factor into their coverage? Probably. Keep this in mind when you scream “I love you, alive girl!” at your friends this weekend.

But horny drama coupled with schadenfreude is still one of the internet’s favorite things, so the memes about this are pretty good.

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8 of the best sexting apps for all of your NSFW exchanges

We’ve rounded up the best apps for getting your sext on, keeping privacy top of mind.
Disclosure

Every product here is independently selected by Mashable journalists. If you buy something featured, we may earn an affiliate commission which helps support our work.

Even in a world where online dating has become the norm and it’s now possible to skip the tiring process of scouring bars and events for other singles in order to get a date, sometimes it’s just the thought of going on the date that’s tiring. 

No matter what kind of encounter you plan, it will always require some sort of physical effort. We’re going to put this simply: we all have sexual needs, and sometimes we’d just like to satisfy those needs with human connection that doesn’t require the extra effort of meeting someone in person. For that, we have sexting. 

Sexting is the act art of sending sexually explicit photos or messages to one or more people. Since sexting, by nature, comes with a lot of factors to consider (consent and privacy, for example), we’ve picked out the best sexting apps to get you off — to a good start, that is.

Our number one pick goes to Plenty of Fish for covering the most bases. Its huge pool of singles and strategic new conversation features put it at the top. For privacy-weary sexters, our favorite is Confide, which we like for their Screenshield technology. (More on that later.) Kaboom takes the easy-access trophy, since it works on more or less any social media platform, so you can sext using whichever site you’re already most comfortable using. 

Here are the 8 best sexing apps for all your NSFW exchanges:


Not connected to social media • New video and voice features

Video and voice features take a while to kick in

The Bottom Line

Plenty of Fish is great if you want to be matched with a compatible sexter but don’t want your social media involved.

1. Plenty of Fish

It’s not connected to your social media, so Plenty of Fish offers that extra bit of anonymity.

  • Basic membership:
    Free
  • 2-months:
    $19.35/month
  • 4-months:
    $12.75/month
  • 8-months:
    $9.99/month
The breakdown: Plenty of Fish really has all the makings of a great sexting app. First off all, its reported registered user-base is over 150 million worldwide, with 57 million connections made every week. Like its name would suggest, there are plenty of fish in this sea, and odds are, some of them are looking to sext. To conveniently narrow your search, the dating app’s (somewhat long) introductory survey allows you to specify what you’re looking for up front. When you choose “something casual/no commitment,” you’re much more likely to find someone in the same boat as you and can shorten the whole “what are you looking for” step of getting to know someone. Discretion is also something to be valued at Plenty of Fish, since they don’t require you to connect any social media when signing up. Technically, you don’t even have to use your real name — a username will suffice. Once your profile is created, you can search random profiles based on the criteria of your choice, use their UltraMatch feature which matches you based on compatibility, their “meet me” feature, which is basically the dating site’s hot or not option, or just see who’s nearby. All communication between members is totally free, so you don’t have much to lose. 
Game-changer: Plenty of Fish recently rolled out some new features that definitely upped its sexting potential. Called “Conversation Powers,” users can now send voice messages, make video calls, and send photo messages. This lets users get more personal by seeing and even hearing each other in realtime (which, let’s face it, can be a lot hotter than words on a screen) without having to fork over their phone number. The catch? These features only become available once users have been chatting for a certain period of time. 
Not for impatient sexters:  Aside from a lengthy sign-up process, some of the features on Plenty of Fish are designed to encourage lengthier interactions. For example, Conversation Powers only become available once users have been chatting for a certain period of time. While this might be frustrating for some users, it’s actually a great feature that encourages you to get to know the person you’re talking to a little better before you start exchanging pictures. We imagine few things are worse than realizing you don’t even vibe with someone after you’ve already sent them mirror shots of your private bits. 


Disappearing links can be sent to any platform • Theoretically un-hackable

No screenshot protection

The Bottom Line

If you’re already sexting “the old-fashioned way” (such as over text), Kaboom could give you an extra layer of protection.

2. Kaboom

Kaboom lets you send self-destructing message links over any platform.

  • Price:
    Free
The breakdown: Kaboom is similar to Snapchat in that it allows users to send images and videos that will eventually disappear, or in Kaboom’s terms — self-destruct. What’s different about Kaboom, though, is the fact that recipients don’t even need to download the app to view the sender’s message. Instead, the message (which can be a photo, video, or text) is shared via a link. Users can share the link through essentially any social media channel, including Facebook messenger, Twitter, and email. Kaboom doesn’t save your messages to a server, so theoretically your private messages can’t be hacked after the fact. 
Why it’s good for sexting: Kaboom takes Snapchat’s best feature (the disappearing message) and makes it easier to share with more people. It doesn’t require you to convert your sexts to any separate apps and allows you to utilize contacts you already have on other platforms. Messages are erased based on number or clicks or an amount of time, so you can have your photo message disappear after one click (view) if you don’t want to risk the link being sent to anyone else.
Cons: Kaboom doesn’t offer any form of screenshot protection, so it’s easy for users to screenshot your messages while you remain oblivious. 


Goes to great lengths to protect your privacy

Technically, the other person could still take video of their phone

The Bottom Line

If you want it to be incredibly hard for someone to connect you to your sexts, Confide is the app for you.

3. Confide

If privacy is everything to you, Confide makes it nearly impossible to connect you to a sext.

  • Basic membership:
    Free
  • Confide Plus (premium features):
    $4.99/month
  • Confide Pro (businesses and teams):
    $15/month
The breakdown: Confide was created based on the idea that your online conversations should be as private as your in-person conversations. According to the site, Confide’s goal is to allow users to have “honest, unfiltered, off-the-record conversations.” Unlike Kaboom, it focuses heavily on the “no screenshot” factor. Using “Screenshield technology,” all messages sent and received on Confide can only be read one line at a time. To read, users either run their finger or mouse over the message line-by-line until they have read the entire thing (lines will disappear pretty much immediately after they are read.) Confide will also never show a user’s name on the same screen as the message. 
Why it’s good for sexting: Nothing quite knocks the libido out of you like finding out your private messages have been screenshot and shared against your will. While a screenshot “notification” is better than no notification at all, we’re pretty sure you’d rather the screenshot just not exist. Confide is your saving grace in that respect, since a screenshot of one line of a sext without your name attached isn’t likely to be very incriminating. 
Cost: Confide is free to use, but you can upgrade to Confide plus or pro for premium features


Messages are erased after 24 hours, read or not • Ability to delete messages from others’ phones • Screenshot notifications • Your name and message never appear together

No app can prevent someone from taking video of their phone

The Bottom Line

While Dust has some serious privacy features, no app is 100% secure.

4. Dust

Dust has tons of privacy features that can keep you anonymous, as long as you want to be.

  • Price:
    Free
The breakdown: Dust is another Snapchat-like app that focuses on disappearing messages with the addition of encryption. Though you can connect your social networks in order to see which of your contacts are also using the app, Dust doesn’t require you to sign up with anything other than a username and password. Messages are never permanently stored and all will be erased after 24 hours, whether they have been read or not. Additionally, users can delete messages from their/other users’ phones. Screenshot notifications are a thing, and like Confide, Dust will never show your name on the same page as your message, so a screenshot can never tie you directly to a piece of text.
Why it’s good for sexting: Dust is theoretically totally untraceable, since you don’t have to use self-identifying information to sign up and nothing is ever permanently stored. However, even the most careful sexters have slip-ups and may reveal too much, which is why the “delete message” feature is great. 
Downsides:  Dust actually does prevent screenshots in some spaces on the app (like messaging),  but only on Androids. But for other operating systems: anyone can still screenshot what you send, so keep that in mind.


It’s the original sexting app, and everyone has it • Has privacy features like screenshot notification

Screenshot notification isn’t screenshot prevention

The Bottom Line

If you want the benefit of a large user base with privacy features too, the OG could still be the best.

5. Snapchat

It doesn’t have the privacy features as some of the more sexting-focused apps, but Snapchat does have the most people.

  • Price:
    Free
The breakdown: Snapchat has moved its way up the app food chain to become a staple in the mainstream social media roster, putting it on the same plain as Facebook and Instagram. But we haven’t forgotten its early roots, stepping into the spotlight as the OG sexting app. 
You can add all the filters and celebrity stories you want, but Snapchat is still a great sexting app. The app’s main original function enables you to send pictures to other users which will automatically disappear within a few seconds. Users can choose a time limit of 1-10 seconds, or choose the infinity option which lets the recipient view the photo for as long as they want before they close out of the window. Additionally, the app also has a feature that notifies the sender if the recipient screenshots their photo. What that means: you can send bae a brief glimpse of the goods without worrying if they’re secretly showing it to others behind your back. 
Why it’s good for sexting: The more people you put in a space, the more chances you have to find what you’re looking for. 
Cons: While the screenshot notification gives you the benefit of knowing when someone screenshots your pictures, it doesn’t really do much for you after the fact, since all you can really do at that point is confront the person and hope they’re respectful of your privacy. 


Huge userbase, so you can find someone you like • Most users don’t meet up anyway

No ability to be completely anonymous

The Bottom Line

If finding a hottie is your focus, Tinder is the place to be, and most users don’t meet in person anyway.

6. Tinder

When it comes down to it, Tinder is a sexting/messaging app more than it even is a dating app anyway.

  • Basic account:
    Free
  • 1-month of Tinder Plus:
    $14.99/month
  • 6-months of Tinder Plus:
    $10/month
  • 12-months of Tinder Plus:
    $6.67/month
The breakdown: Few haven’t heard of Tinder, the widely-used hookup dating app that originated the “swipe right for yes, left for no” concept. The way Tinder works is pretty much just that. Users create a profile to which they can connect their Facebook and Instagram accounts. After filling in some basic info and typing a brief bio (of usually no more than three sentences), users can get to swiping. The app shows you other users based on location, and if you find one you like, just swipe right. If someone you like also swipes right for you, it’s a match and you can proceed to message each other. 
Why it’s good for sexting: While Tinder is technically a dating app, its reputation tends to skew more towards a hookup app. But unlike more serious, paid apps like Match or Zoosk, Tinder tends to attract people who are open to something casual. Tinder’s setup also makes for super easy browsing without the hassle of creating an in-depth profile, so you don’t have to fill out all the compatibility-focused questions and can instead focus on the reason you’re really there — to find someone you think is hot enough to sext with.
Bonus: According to a survey, over 70% of Tinder users never actually meet up with their matches in person. Normally this wouldn’t be considered a bonus, but in the world of sexting? All we hear is “popular dating app where there’s not a lot of pressure to actually meet up.” Ding ding ding. We have a winner. 


Large user base • Good for mature users

Very pricey for a sexting app

The Bottom Line

If you think you’ve hit an age limit with Tinder, Match might be more comfortable, but you’ll pay for it.

7. Match

If you feel kind of creepy sexting on Tinder, Match could be a better place for you.

  • 3-months:
    $23.99/month
  • 6-months:
    $20.99/month
  • 12-months:
    $19.99/month
The breakdown: So we know “sexting” probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Match. The dating site giant has been around for decades and claims to have led to more relationships and marriages than any other dating site. However, if there’s one weird wonderful thing about online dating, it’s this: Anything can be a sexting app if you want it to be! 
Why Match works as a sexting app: Like Plenty of Fish, Match has a large userbase of singles, comprised of more than 7.4 million paid members. If sexting is what you’re into, the odds are in your favor as far as finding someone who’s on the same page. You’re also not limited to which profiles you can interact with, so you’re not completely doomed if your recommended matches aren’t looking for something a little more risqué. 
Cons: Match does tend to skew a more on the mature side, but on that note, if you feel you’ve surpassed the age limit on Tinder where you can’t send messages without feeling a bit creepy, Match is a great option. 
Cost: $23.99/month for three months or $19.99/month for a year’s worth of premium. There’s also a free version, but interaction with other users is extremely limited. 


Wide variety of ways to browse • Large user base • Photo verification feature

No screenshot protection • Pricey

The Bottom Line

If you’re willing to pony up, Zoosk is a good way to avoid fake, misleading, or dead profiles.

8. Zoosk

Zoosk doesn’t offer privacy protection, but could hook you up with someone truly great.

  • 1-month:
    $29.95/month
  • 3-months:
    $19.98/month
  • 12-months:
    $12.49/month
The breakdown: Zoosk is one of those dating apps that can really be good for whatever kind of relationship you’re looking for. Unlike certain apps that are somewhat pigeonholed in their purpose (eharmony for creating marriages, for example), Zoosk leaves everything on the table. Like Match, Zoosk gives you a wide variety of ways to browse profiles, including their Carousel feature and Smartpicks option, which is a list of profiles Zoosk recommends. Zoosk has a huge user-base of over 40 million singles worldwide and offers a photo verification option, where users can verify their photos to ensure they actually look like their pictures.
Why it’s good for sexting: Aside from a large pool of members and an easy-to-use app, Zoosk’s photo verification factor really shines. In a world where fake profiles and catfishes are commonplace, knowing that who you’re chatting with is actually as hot as you think they are can add a whole new level of excitement to your sext life.
Downside: Zoosk isn’t free and doesn’t offer any sort of screenshot protection. However, by paying for membership you’re less likely to worry about reaching out to inactive accounts and wasting time talking to people who don’t intend to get the most out of the app.
Cost: A one-month subscription is $29.95, three months is $19.98 per month, and six months is only $12.49 per month

Sexting101

While all of these options give you a great and in some cases a more private opportunity to exchange flirty messages, it’s important to remember a few basic rules:

  • No app can completely protect your privacy for you — that’s your job. Though apps like Confide and Dust have certain features that are designed to protect your identity/content, they don’t rule out all scenarios. For example, someone doesn’t need to take a screenshot to capture a picture you send. They could easily just use another phone or device to snap or record whatever you send. You should always keep this in mind before sending anything that could be compromising, and do your best to make sure you trust the person who’s receiving your messages.

  • Assess the situation and know your audience. Usually it doesn’t take much more than a few pre-sext texts (or pre-sexts) to gauge whether or not someone is interested in doing the cyber-dirty with you. Take the time to figure that out before you lead with something raunchy and uncalled-for. AKA don’t just start throwing dick pics at people left and right if they didn’t ask.

  • Be respectful: Privacy is sacred. The internet has the scary ability to make fleeting moments very permanent. If someone asks you to keep something to yourself, you better do it. While sexting can be light and fun, it also requires a serious level of trust. If you betray that trust, you’re ruining it for everybody.

Sexting vs. dating in real life

Real-life dating is obviously the best way to get to know somebody long term, especially if you’re looking for any kind of serious, in-person relationship. And real sex will always be better than sexting. *However,* sexting is an alternative that may help you out in ways you didn’t even think about. 

Convenient: Whether you plan on actually wining and dining your date or just meeting to hook up, it always requires some extra effort. For those with super hectic schedules or those who just don’t have room in their life (for whatever reason) for a steady in-person relationship, sexting is practically a saving grace. After all, your sex drive doesn’t go away just because you’re busy. Sexting allows you to take care of your sexual needs without putting yourself out.

Liberating: As is the case with most behind-the-screen activities, with sexting, you can let go of your inhibitions a bit and feel more comfortable exploring your sexual side knowing there’s a certain barrier between you and the other person. You can experiment with language and ideas that maybe you wouldn’t feel completely comfortable exploring in person. 

Safe: We’ve touched on the reasons why sexting might not be completely safe in terms of privacy, but to its credit, sexting offers an element of safety that in-person meetings don’t. Sexting allows you to interact with both people you know and total strangers without putting yourself in dangerous or unwanted physical situations. Your experience should always be what you want it to be, and with sexting, if it’s not going in the direction you want, it’s just a matter of closing an app. 

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