In Defense of Dressing Modestly

Posted by Jen Anderson on

In Defense of Dressing Modestly

No matter how a woman dresses, someone is going to criticize. If she shows too much skin (whatever that means), someone will say she's a floozy, or trying to look younger than she is. If she doesn't show enough skin, that same someone might say she's uptight or ashamed of her body.

And heaven forbid if you dress modestly for religious reasons. (See what I did there?) They'll act like you're oppressed and need to be rescued. Instead of, you know, voluntarily adhering to the tenets of your religion just like they do with theirs.

blush pink plus size clothesHow much skin you choose to show or not show is your own business. Maybe you're cold. Maybe you're concealing a scar to avoid prying questions. Maybe you just don't like feeling exposed. It's your business and no one else's.

No matter how much I encourage you to show off your upper arms, it's completely up to you if you actually do it. Even I keep my upper arms covered when I'm going to an event where there will be a professional photographer. Instagram my arms all you want, people, but keep them out of your wedding albums. But that's a line I draw for myself. You do you.

Even if you're out in the dating world, there's nothing wrong with dressing in a way that says "my eyes are up here, buddy." Your new (or longtime) sweetheart can admire your figure even when it's not exposed.

plus size black and blush pink jacketDressing modestly doesn't mean you can't dress to look stylish. Maxi skirts and tops with long sleeves keep you covered, but not frumpy. Slim Leg Pants (aka leggings) don't show skin, but do show off your shape - which may be totally fine according to your personal or religious rules. 

Of course, everyone's rules are different. I feel like an idiot wearing socks with a skirt so it's tights, sandals, or no-show socks for me. Some women want to cover their upper chest, but expose their arms and calves. For them, Vikki Vi's T-Shirt Style Dresses are modest. Other women want to conceal their figure a bit, so Vikki Vi's Pull On Pants and Swing Top work for them. 

plus size striped swing cardiganShowing some skin can be empowering. I'm thrilled that teen girls across the country are fighting dress codes that distract from their education in the name of not distracting boys. (So much ugh.) But empowerment is about making your own choices - and that includes dressing modestly.

A Facebook acquaintance of mine recently got some grief from her mom when she got herself some modest swimwear. A long-sleeve rashguard and a swim leggings/skirt combo offended her mom's sensibilities for some reason. As someone who sunburns easily and would love to go swimming even when I haven't remembered to shave, this sounds like the perfect outfit. 

It can be challenging to find modest plus size clothing. Many designers think we don't need sleeves for some reason. I suspect a conspiracy to sell more cardigans. Vikki Vi Classics include plenty of pieces that show some skin, but we've got our share of modest clothes too. 

Shop Vikki Vi Classics now to find some pieces that follow your personal rules to a tee.

Check out our other posts about plus size style.

1 Comment

Jen, you’re right on the money with this one. I enjoy your articles and reading them, along with having the wonderful clothing source of PBD, have enabled me to have a more carefree attitude about being plus-sized. Keep up the good work!


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