The Women From ‘Naked And Afraid’ Reveal Secrets From Behind The Scenes


Discovery Channel’s reality series Naked and Afraid XL challenges the survival skills of a group of people who are put in the wilderness for 40 days without clothing, food, or water.

The show has been praised for taking the outrageous factors that have made other reality programming so successful. Instead of narcissism, it celebrates human strength in an incredibly vulnerable and primal situation.

The extreme nature of the show has prompted a lot of questions from viewers. Two women from Naked and Afraid XL have answered some of the most popular inquiries.

Two participants of the second season of Naked and Afraid XL, Alyssa Ballestero and Stacy Lee Osorio, sat down with PEOPLE to answer the questions everyone is dying to know. What really goes on while people are bare-skinned in the jungle?

Considering the show has no winner or prize at the end of the 40 days, many wonder how participants swing it financially. However, it’s been revealed that participants get a few hundred dollars for their time on the show.

One question that many people can’t help but wonder is if there’s any hooking up going on when the production crew goes back to base camp each night.

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Ballestero shut that one down pretty quickly: “The answer is no. That’s not what happens out there. Everyone is dirty and tired; it doesn’t really happen.” Osorio backed up Ballestero’s answer by adding, “You have no libido out there at all. It’s really not [that kind of] experience.”

Another question many viewers wonder about the female participants is if they’re given feminine hygiene products or if they have to fend for themselves during that time of the month.

“Everyone wants to know what we do when we’re on our period,” Osorio told PEOPLE. “The show does allow us to have tampons. It’s not only a sanitary hazard, but it’s a safety hazard because you don’t want to attract predators.”

You would think that appearing in front of strangers and a production crew naked would take a lot of self-confidence. However, both Ballestero and Osorio beg to differ.

“I know this sound ridiculous, but I’m a pretty shy person,” Ballestero told PEOPLE. “I don’t just take off my clothes for any reason. It was awkward, and the crew was like, ‘Oh don’t worry. We’ve seen it all before.’ and I’m thinking, ‘Yeah, but you haven’t seen me before!’”

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“Oh, God. I have tons of self-esteem issues,” Osorio stated about appearing naked. “I had to remind myself that I’m beautiful because the people in my life think I’m beautiful.”

Prior to participating in Naked and Afraid XL, both Ballestero and Osorio were contestants on the previous version of this show, Naked and Afraid. So how do you deal with family and friends seeing you naked on television?

Osorio, who has two kids at home, says that she was honest with her children and made sure they were okay with their mother going through with it first.

“They understood this is not [an intentionally arousing] experience,” Osorio told PEOPLE. “I made sure they understood that it was a survival situation where I was being pushed to my limits. They were okay with that.”