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The Smart Way To Sext

Here we go again, talking about apps for horny people way more than usual. But that’s because there’s a new king: Snapchat. Here’s how to use it wisely.

What exactly are we talking about?

Snapchat is simple. Send a picture to someone and it self-deletes after a predetermined time period. You can make a dirty photo evaporate in a matter of seconds. Nothing is stored on anyone’s phone. If someone screencaps, you’ll be alerted, so you know they aren’t to be trusted. You can draw on the images or add text too. The app’s utility as sexual social media is getting a lot of attention.

What’s the catch?

Foolishly — and in this day and age, irresponsibly — you can publish a public profile for your Snapchat account. This means that strangers (or your wife) can potentially see who you’ve been Snapchatting with most frequently. While this in itself isn’t incriminating — you can’t see the actual pictures — it might raise some eyebrows.

But that doesn’t have to be a deal breaker.

Use multiple accounts

You should be worried about sending sexts using a public profile. But there’s a fix: just make a new Snapchat account for each new sexting recipient. This way, nobody will ever know about any of the others. (Except you.)

Log in and out each time you want to sext someone different. Write it down which account goes to which sextee if you’re worried about losing track. This might seem overly cautious. But if you’re sending so many people so many naked pics of your anatomy that you can’t keep them straight, you need all the help you can get.

Tips on safe, easy sexting

Using Snapchat is as simple as point, shoot and send. But you can make it better. Especially if you’re doing something salacious.

  • To discourage screenshotting (or witnesses), set your self-destruct time to two seconds. That’s enough to get a peek and nothing more.
  • Never, EVER set your expiration time for one second. Seeing private parts flash at you like a strobe light is terrifying, like some sexual hell-ghoul from The Ring. It’s not attractive.
  • Don’t add text or drawings to your pictures. That’s a turnoff. It makes you look immature.
  • Exception: You can use the drawing tool to block out parts of the photo that could be used to trace it back to you — emergency precaution. Use black.
  • If someone does screenshot your message — you’ll get an icon notification — don’t say anything. Wait for their next sexy JPG, and then screencap it in turn. Mutual assured destruction. Then cut off contact.

Snapchat is probably just a fad app that will fizzle out once people find a newer and more efficient way to ruin their relationships. But for now it’s a hell of a lot of fun. Just be smart about it.

User Manual is Gizmodo’s guide to etiquette.

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