What’s the Point of Modesty?

As the years have gone by and our clientele has become more diverse, I find my own personal attitude towards modesty has changed.

Growing up in a small, conservative Evangelical Christian community modesty meant something entirely different to what it means to me now. Back then, modesty meant covering up so I “wouldn’t lead young men astray.”

This premise largely still dominants the discussion when it comes to modesty, and it’s a dangerous myth I’d like to dispel. If a young man (or any man for that matter) has lust in his heart, it does not matter how much a girl or woman covers her body.

Likewise, if a man’s heart is filled with respect, it does not matter what you reveal. How a man responds to women and girls is a reflection of his character not your wardrobe.

As I’ve matured, fashion has become more and more a reflection of my personality and I’ve rethought my stance on modesty time and time again here are conclusions I’ve come to.

Modesty, like fashion generally, should be a reflection of a girl or woman’s personal tastes and beliefs. In cases where there are more restrictive modesty rules, such as with tznius or hijabi modesty standards, adherence to these standards should come from faith and conviction, not coercion.

Ultimately, what we wear should reflect our values and our personality, not what society imposes on us. It is not our responsibility to keep a man’s thoughts pure, nor should any religion impose itself on nonbelievers.

And let’s not forget: Fashion is supposed to be fun!