Laverne Cox, Jordana Brewster, Nicole Beharie, Katheryn Winnick and Sandrine Holt Pose Nude in Allure

May 2015 cover girl Blake Lively remains fully clothed

By Zach Johnson Apr 16, 2015 2:20 PMTags
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Allure's annual nudes feature is here!

The magazine's May 2015 issue features five TV and movie stars posing naked: Sleepy Hollow's Nicole Beharie, Furious 7's Jordana Brewster, Orange Is the New Black's Laverne Cox, Terminator Genisys' Sandrine Holt and Vikings' Katheryn Winnick. Cover girl Blake Lively, meanwhile, remains fully clothed.

The tasteful nudes showcase the actresses' natural beauty.

For Brewster, 34, stripping for the camera was no big deal. "I was raised in Brazil for part of my life, where people are pretty open about their bodies," she says. "The bikinis are kind of nonexistent, so you might as well be naked." She sought her husband's approval before disrobing for the publication, saying, "I asked if he had any reservations. He said, 'Just don't do full frontal.' He'll be pleasantly surprised."

Brewster loves her shot, too. "There's a strength to the portrait that I'm really proud of," she says. "I'm having more fun posing nude or being in a bikini or doing love scenes than I ever did before because it hit me: This is fleeting, and in a couple of years I won't be able to do this, so just enjoy it."

Cox, by contrast, was more hesitant about the shoot.

"Going through life, you try to cover and hide, but it doesn't really work. I said no initially, thought about it, and said no again," the star, 30, says. "But I'm a black transgender woman. I felt this could be really powerful for the communities that I represent. Black women are not often told that we're beautiful unless we align with certain standards. Trans women certainly are not told we're beautiful. Seeing a black transgender woman embracing and loving everything about herself might be inspiring to some other folks. There's beauty in the things we think are imperfect. That sounds very cliché, but it's true."

Cox adds that she decided to do the shoot for herself, too. "I honestly just want to make myself happy most, and if other people like it, then that's great," she tells Allure. "If they don't, then I'm still happy."

Why did Beharie bare her body? "I just turned 30, and I was really nervous," says the Shame star, who says her "bum" is her best body part. "But I wanted to celebrate and accept my body in an artistic way."

How did the other two actresses prepare for the shoot? Holt, 42, practiced posing. "You want to have tension in your body. It helps show the muscles and makes things look nice," she explains. "I'm very long, so we wanted to take advantage of that—my long legs." Winnick, meanwhile, says she "called my girlfriends and asked them to pose naked to show me what positions look good. I have a few crazy photos on my phone." Though she "walked in nervous and vulnerable," she left the photo shoot feeling the exact opposite. "Posing nude made me feel more free and empowered," the actress, 37, tells Allure.

In past years, Leslie Bibb, Colbie Caillat, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting, Eliza Dushku, Chelsea Handler, Taraji P. Henson, Padma Lakshmi, Jennifer Morrison, Naya RiveraAshley Tisdale and Catherine Zeta-Jones have posed nude for Allure.

Allure's May 2015 issue is on newsstands Apr. 28.