You always hope that you are going to feel comfortable and respected at your job. This perhaps becomes even more important if you’re an actress and your job involves you occasionally taking off your clothes and then engaging in some very…adult situations!
The 20 actresses below all have made their mark on the television screen, and for a large majority of them that included a role that involved them hanging out in their birthday suit. While some shows may create a bigger impact on this list, with Game of Thrones, Spartacus, Westworld, Masters of Sex (shocking!) and Orange is the New Black taking up multiple spots, we are sure you won’t be complaining.
One thing every single woman on our list has in common? They feel completely comfortable letting the audience check out every part of their physique.
You also don’t have to take our word for it, as we have quotes from every single entry allowing the women to put in their own words just why they love acting in the buff.
20. Nathalie Emmanuel
If you want to talk about hitting the ground running in Hollywood, there is perhaps not a better example then Nathalie Emmanuel. Emmanuel has not only captured your attention as Missandei in Game of Thrones but also plays a significant role in both the Maze Runner and Fast and the Furious franchise. While she may be keeping her clothes on in the latter roles, we’re sure fans of Game of Thrones remember when she rocked out in her birthday suit. Emmanuel talked about the experience in a past interview, including praise for how the scene was done.
“It’s such a shame that people focus on the nudity because it’s such a small part. But it’s so much more complicated than that and to focus on the fact that somebody’s nude is kind of underselling it a bit because it’s so much more than that. It’s a very innocent thing. She was just there bathing. There’s nothing salacious about it or anything,” she said.
19. Yael Stone
You’re going to have to forgive us if by the time you get to the end of this list if you won’t be able to get the steamy scenes from Orange is the New Black out of your head. It’s something that is definitely integral to the plot, and for Yael Stone, she absolutely understood that when she signed on saying in a past interview,
“The sex scenes are also a privilege, and we have to see it that way. If it’s written by great people — these people that write the show are really smart, we can trust them — I do feel like those scenes are really necessary. It’s a big part of [prison] life. To be able to go into those private moments, and be authentic with that … that’s what I’m interested in,”
While Orange is the New Black is praised for its authenticity in several areas, Stone may be the only actress to come out and say that they’re just depicting how real life works for many women in prison.
18. Olivia Wilde
Olivia Wilde travels back to the 1970s when she appeared in the television series Vinyl. The series is produced by Martin Scorsese and Mick Jagger, one who is an expert in details and the other who if we’re being honest, has probably seen himself plenty of naked women in his day.
Perhaps it’s why they strived for accuracy, even in terms of nudity, which Wilde highlighted in a past interview,
“We all wear merkins [which covers your lower half], because, it’s the 70s, I think it does make you feel less naked.”
Wilde went on to say that she felt like it was just wearing a little fur bikini, except you know without the top half! Wilde also mentioned that she kept going up to various crew members to show off her outfit.
You may also find it interesting that the show also allowed her to pick the color and consistency of her merkin, so at least it was a personalized experience!
17. Malin Akerman
If you haven’t already checked out the Netflix television series Easy, you’re definitely doing yourself a disservice. The series has several great moments, but the gorgeous Malin Akerman is probably a pretty good enough reason to go and pick up the remote.
The role contains several moments of gratuitous nudity, something that Akerman admitted in a past interview definitely does not bother her, “I won’t do a role that is gratuitous. If there is no reason for the nudity, I won’t do it.”
Akerman also gave further insight on her opinion on nudity, saying, “In Sweden, nudity is natural. It’s not considered sexual. We’ve grown up with boobies on television. People are topless on the beach. My parents would sometimes walk naked from the bedroom to the bathroom. You don’t blink because it’s so natural… If the role is a good one, the nudity is not even an afterthought.”
16. Rose Leslie
You’re going to have to forgive us if for the rest of the day you continue to hear “You know nothing Jon Snow” in your head over and over, but do you think we can include a list of actresses who love baring it all and at least not consider Rose Leslie?
The gorgeous ginger infamously has a passionate love scene with Kit Harrington (so clearly he knows how to seduce her!) and when talking about the scene, Leslie had nothing but praise saying that she loves how her character owns her sexuality,
“The women in Game of Thrones know how to use their sexuality, and that’s power. Work to your strengths,” as well as saying,
“It’s refreshing, certainly, those are some formidable women… it particularly resonates with me, to play someone with backbone.”
Leslie also admitted in another interview that this was her first time taking it off on screen and while typically, an actress could request a closed set but “In the grand machine that is Game of Thrones it’s not like that. I was naked in a cave with about 30 men watching! I’m there saying, ‘Oh, so this is a closed set? Oh, OK.’ It was slightly intimidating.”
15. Taylor Schilling
Taylor Schilling had to know when she was signing on to star in Orange is the New Black that nudity was going to play a huge part. I mean heck, her first day of shooting was the shower scene with Prepon! So it may be understandable that Schilling has come out in a past interview and talked about her comfortability in baring it all,
“This show was worth the risk. I believe in this show and I believe in the story we’re telling, and I felt like the nude scenes were worth it. The story can hold it. The story can hold that much danger and that much boundary-pushing,” said Schilling.
While it makes her sound confident, she did go on to say,
“It’s really scary. I’ve never done anything like that, so I really had to believe in it to be able to do it. I believe in Jenji, and I really believe in the story. And it’s not all sexualized nudity.”
You can imagine by season 4 that she is definitely far less scared with dropping her clothes on-set!
14. Katrina Law
Katrina Law may be a former Miss Teen USA Pageant Contestant, but she definitely did not get pampered when she played one of the servant girls in the series Spartacus.
Law has dropped her clothes in multiple seasons, something she said has made the process much easier,
“I was extremely nervous about getting my kit off in Season 1. I remember having to mentally steal myself and giving myself pep talks in the trailer before heading out to set. Then I just had to view it as jumping into an ice cold pool of water and just having to dive head first. Season 2 nudity wise has a been a breeze for me in comparison. I did warn my parents not to watch my first couple of episodes with any friends,” she said in a past interview.
13. Rose McIver
Do you want to know just how much diversity Rose McIver has as an actress? First, she can kill it as the iconic character of Tinkerbell in the television series Once upon a Time, and then the next thing you know she has elected to take off her clothes and get into some very adult booty bumping in the television series Masters of Sex.
Rose McIver has nothing but praise for the series, though, including making sure to highlight how comfortable she feels.
“Everybody knows that to service the project the best that you can, you create an environment where nobody is intimidated and everybody does the best work that they can,” saying in a past interview.
McIver also has the brilliant actress Allison Janney to lean on for support who plays her mom and who also happens to act in her birthday suit for the show.
12. Alexandra Daddario
True Detective is an outstanding show that is held together not only by its captivating story but the outstanding actors and actresses. Two of which, Alexandra Daddario and Woody Harrelson elected to knock boots with in quite a hot and heavy scene.
When talking about the scene, Daddario said,
“I think one thing about this role for me was that it was a huge challenge for me, and I saw it as a good challenge. I saw it as an interesting challenge.”
It’s not like she didn’t see her birthday suit acting coming, as she went on to say,
“I really wanted to be part of the show, and I understood why the nudity and all of that was required of the character… The character is really different from anything that I’ve done before. The nudity was just part of that. Woody has done so many different things. He made the whole situation very comfortable.”
Kudos to Harrelson for helping keep a respectable and professional environment.
11. Anna Paquin
Anna Paquin may have kicked some serious booty in the X-Men franchise, but she definitely wasn’t going to be dropping her clothes as Kitty Pride anytime soon. That is far from the case for her role in True Blood that also stars her husband Stephen Moyer.
If that isn’t potentially awkward enough, Paquin admits that Moyer who also directs some episodes has also been in charge of some of her lovemaking scenes that involve other people. Moyet talked about the experience in a past interview, saying,
“There are moments where I’ll be watching the monitor [and say] ‘Oh, Joe, just move your hand up towards Anna’s breast’…and then I’ll go ‘Babe, babe, enjoy it.’ I’m certainly talking to her as ‘babe.’ ‘Darling, go for it, yeah!’”
Paquin was also open about her comfort in a past interview, in this instance talking about the scenes that directly involve Moyer,
“Maybe it should be weird, simulating sex with your husband in front of people? But it’s really not. When it’s a love scene with someone you actually love, there’s no feeling like, ‘Can I touch him here? Can I touch him there?’ You know what your boundaries are — or what they aren’t, I suppose.”
We’re sure that this is a film series that they definitely aren’t going to want their kids to be watching though! The two welcomed twins in 2012.
10. Evan Rachel Wood
While Evan Rachel Wood is not the only woman from Westworld to make this list, you definitely probably aren’t heartbroken to find out that she acts in her birthday suit in the outstanding series. Part of what brings the series together is the tremendous acting by Anthony Hopkins and when Wood’s first day on set came, it just happened to involve her in her birthday suit across from Hopkins.
“I wept after both scenes I had with Anthony. The first scene I did, I was completely naked, and he was five inches away from my face. I was like, ‘This is quite a way to break the ice.’ But he was so incredible that I forgot any of that was happening. I went to my trailer and I cried. My friend came over and said, ‘What’s wrong? Did the scene go bad?’ And I said, ‘No, it went really well! That’s why I’m crying!'”
Wood compared Hopkins’ talent to that of a da Vinci painting.
9. Viva Bianca
When you think television shows that involve copious amounts of on-screen nudity, you would be foolish to not think of the series Spartacus. One of the most prominent leads is the gorgeous actress Viva Bianca who on various occasions is required to not only bare it all but get in some pretty graphic boot knocking.
When talking about how nudity is handled on the show, Bianca said,
“Whenever the prospect of nudity arises on the show in a particular scene or episode, there will always be a meeting about it with the director or the producers. What’s always discussed is the relevance of that scene to the story. The nudity and the sex scenes have to be driving the story forward in order for them to be appropriate and justified,”
While she did say it is never a comfortable experience, she did go on to say, “It must be dealt with in the most clinical, professional, and respectful manner. And on this show it absolutely is, we’re really protected.”
8. Carice Van Houten
When Carice Van Houten was asked to explain why she was so comfortable walking around with no clothes on, she pointed perhaps to her heritage,
“I think it has to do with the fact that I’m Dutch. I’m serious, because we are more used to nudity in films. We are not as shy in that sense.”
Either way, we sure you aren’t complaining! Houten was also quick to praise the storytellers on Game of Thrones for how nudity was handled.
Which is just as well, since while other women in the TV series are adept at fighting, sex is very much Melisandre’s weapon of choice.
“Her nudity is her instrument. It’s the way to get what she needs…people react so strongly on a nipple instead of a head being cut off,” says the 38-year-old actress.
7. Thandie Newton
Thandie Newton not only strips off her clothes in Westworld, but her character is often in outfits that will leave very little to the imagination. It is that constant teasing that her character does, that made actually dropping it all off so empowering for Newton.
“When I was naked, people were really respectful and in awe of my ‘bravery.’ The thing about sexy, lacy undies is that you’re covering up the sacred stuff, so that you can forget about that. You’re inviting people to think about what’s underneath, but not see what’s underneath. It’s the allure of the unknown…But naked, I have all the power because I got there before you did, and what is actually there is vulnerable, life-giving and hasn’t been tampered with… I’ve left myself as I am. And that was really empowering.”
6. Lena Headey
Lena Headey elected to use a body double for her character’s infamous walk of shame (in her birthday suit) leading some fans to question whether the actress had a hatred with baring it all.
She was quick to defend herself saying, “It was really a bit shocking. I’ve done nudity. I’m not averse to it.” Headey perhaps most prominently let her clothes hit the floor in the movie 300.
You’ll be happy to know that the body double who did end up baring it all for Headey, also was thrilled at the opportunity, “It’s definitely the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but also the best experience of my life. And I hope the next thing I do will have my head in it!” said body double Rebecca Van Cleave.
5. Marisa Ramirez
As you continue to get acquainted with the ladies of the Spartacus arena and we would be doing you a disservice to not include Marisa Ramirez into the mix as well. Ramirez is well aware that once you bare it all, you can never take it back,
“My soul took a big hit, it’s not really life-changing, but once you do it, it’s something you can never take back.”
To Ramirez’s credit, her scenes weren’t nearly as graphic as some of the other ladies on the list. This may be why she ended the interview by saying, “It’s art… I was pleased with it.”
4. Lizzy Caplan
You definitely would not be alone if you got your first look at Lizzy Caplan alongside several other gorgeous women in the 2004 hit, Mean Girls. But nowadays Caplan has traded her hall pass for the far kinkier role in Masters of Sex. Ready for the bombshell to drop? There is nudity in a show that literally has sex in the title!
When talking about dropping her clothes for the role in a past interview, Caplan said,
“It still isn’t my favorite thing to do at work. It’s never one hundred percent comfortable, but I think it’s as close as it’s going to get.”
3. Lena Dunham
Lena Dunham certainly has to be comfortable with the amount of nudity on the television show Girls. If she wasn’t, she could always just try and change the script up as the series was created and is also written partially by Dunham.
While some actresses may also elect to wear “nude patches” to help cover up certain areas, Dunham also doesn’t seem to see a point in that, saying in a past interview,
“I stopped wearing the nude patch after the first season of Girls. There’s not one guy who works on that show who hasn’t seen the inside of my vagina. You glue it over your vagina. It gets sweaty and always falls off. My male co-stars, at the end of the day, don’t care.”
That is certainly one way to bond with your co-stars!
2. Emilia Clarke
When Emilia Clarke was cast as the now iconic role of Daenerys, she was quick to let the producers know that she had no intention of letting her “dragons” loose on screen. Yet as you know, that has definitely happened on more than one occasion, but do you know which scene from season 1 really helped sell her on the idea of nudity?
It happens to come towards the end of the season when she emerges naked from the flames. Clarke described the scene in a past interview, saying,
“It was just a wonderful, strong moment I wanted to own, a real empowering, girl-power wow scene. I was so thrilled with it. It’s not a sexy scene, she’s not naked for no reason, it’s not gratuitous. She’s naked because she’s just destroyed her enemies in this almighty blaze after they underestimated her – how could I say no?”
Clarke has also defended her nudity in the past, saying that it is often to move the plot forward and that there is also plenty of male nudity in Westeros!
1. Anna Friel
Anna Friel has always had her hand in a variety of television projects, our favorite perhaps being Charlotte Charles in Pushing Daisies but she is also getting praise for her recent role in the Netflix series Marcella.
Friel also took place in the movie The Look of Love, and you may love the look of her naked body which is on display in the movie.
“For my part when I got to it, I was so used to it. It’s not such a big deal, I think we’ve become a bit more relaxed now with our approach to nudity and nakedness. Strangely enough, I felt more liberated, not just because of the period of what the ’70s mean to us, but in those outfits the shorter the skirts got and the longer the hair got.” said Friel when talking about the role.
While we are not sure if Friel has birthday suit acting on her horizon, at least we know she’s clearly comfortable doing it!