It’s inevitable, whenever I speak to young ladies about beauty, that someone asks me to address the topic of modesty. Personally, I prefer to use the term dignity, since the word “modesty” is often interpreted as stale, legalistic control that only spurs on rebellion in those who love fashion. In a recent discussion on the matter, a young man, who had overheard me talking with a group of girls, told his friend that we were discussing “confidential beauty.”
Immediately, I felt a blog coming on….
Modesty is not old and ugly; it is dignified and commands respect, like confidentiality.
A young lady discovering her identity and the power she has to attract attention does not want to be told to hide, but modesty is not about hiding and it is not unattractive. In fact, dressing discretely is far more powerful than immodesty because it invites attraction rather than demands attention.
Confidentiality: marked by intimacy or willingness to confide; private, secret; entrusted with confidences; containing information whose unauthorized disclosure could be prejudicial to the (national) interest. -Merriam-Webster
if we want to be dignified women, we need to keep our certain body parts confidential. We should share our secrets with only the ones with security clearance. (in case I am being unclear: save your confidential beauty for your husband.)
If you have ever received a package that was marked “CONFIDENTIAL” then you know the distinguished feeling you get. The sender has sealed this package as private. This means three things:
- You are important; the contents of this package are private and meant for you and no one else.
- The contents are valuable, at least to you and the one who sent it. It does not matter what anyone else thinks of what’s in the package–they have no authority to judge it–it is literally non of their business.
- People respect that which is treated with confidentiality.
Does this mean you should cover up your entire body and dress like an old lady? I believe that if we want to be confident, we must each live by our own convictions–not the convictions of men, media or even mom. Take the now popular trend of the “cold shoulder” for instance. If your mom is convicted that you should not show your shoulders but you are not, then do you follow this trend or not? Most shirts in this style keep the private parts “confidential,” unlike most off the shoulder styles. I find it helpful to have guidelines to follow so that in times like these, we can figure out if new trends compete with our convictions or not.
Confidentiality actually has less to do with style as it does with distraction. You don’t have to reveal private parts to be immodest; just suggesting “the reveal” can be a distraction to someone tempted by the attraction. A thin light blouse over a dark bra may cause a “security breach” by revealing the secret to unauthorized personnel. Not to mention that immodesty also robs you of the power of attraction.
Think about it like a Christmas gift. Don’t you anticipate, value and respect the presents that are wrapped with excellence more than the ones with thin paper that gaps? Confidentiality is what makes the package fun to open. If you can see parts of the gift, your mind has already opened it and the thrill is gone.
That’s how it is for men.
Your outfit may get them looking or even gawking, but ladies, if you want to be valued and respected, then dress in such a way that they have to anticipate what they make get if you should chose to give them that authority.
Confidential Beauty Checklist:
In order to be sure your outfit is keeping your “goods” safe and secret, stand in front of a mirror and go through this simple security clearance. Don’t just take a quick glance in the mirror after you are dressed and run off for the day. Confidential things deserve higher security. If your clothing is made with thin or light fabric or doesn’t fit correctly, they may droop, pull or pucker and expose private parts or undergarments, robbing you of the dignity you deserve. The style of clothing may be modest enough, and your private parts may look secure when you do a quick check, but to be certain, do a full security check with the childhood dance, “Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes”:
- Belly check: Raise your hands over your head. Does your shirt rise up and expose your stomach? You may think nothing of your tummy, but this is a temptation to the imagination.
- Gap check: Put your hands on your shoulders with your elbows outward. Does your shirt stretch or gap and give a peek a boo window? Remember, people are not always looking straight toward you.
- Valley check: Bend over and put your hands on you knees. When you look up to the mirror, is there cleavage exposed? You may be surprised how much a tall man sees.
- Cheek check. Turn your back to the mirror, touch your toes and look behind you. This is what they guys on the stairs below you are looking at. Are your parts still private?
- Plumber check. Ask a friend to stand behind you while you sit down and tie your shoes. Is your backside exposed? This “other valley” may not be much of a temptation, but please, let’s keep it confidential!
Just keeping it real. Remember, you are loved, blessed and highly favored by the King of Kings and He loves when you look like His princess.
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. -Proverbs 31:25
As an author and speaker, Catrina’s passion is in helping women and girls overcome confidence conflicts, especially those involving rejection, betrayal and loss. After 30 years in the beauty industry as both a cosmetologist and an image consultant, Catrina now uses her profession, her own powerful stories and her training as a Biblical life-coach to reach the heart in a way that is relatable, encouraging and inspiring. Her message is balanced with both fashion and faith and is making a difference in the lives of women and girls all over! To be part of this movement, connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linked In, Goodreads and consider having her speak at your next event. Visit http://catrinawelch.com for more information.