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The Beauty of a Woman

By MH, Age 17

I have always agreed with the Gaelic Proverb that says, “Modesty is the beauty of a woman.”  The problem today is that everyday people and many celebrities show their beauty in a way that contradicts the Proverb.  The world today views true beauty as outward appearance.  By outward appearance, I don’t mean a girl’s face, but I mean the way she dresses and the cleavage she shows.  In a random 20 person survey, guys were asked what they would rather see a girl dressed in.  Five guys voted that they would rather see a girl wearing tight-fitting, revealing clothing.  Eight guys voted that it depends on the situation.  Seven guys voted on sweat pants and a comfortable look.  A lot of girls use their clothes to show exhibitionism.  Their clothes act as the extravagant behavior to attract attention to themselves. 

Many girls believe that in order for them to be beautiful they have to show off their body.  Many girls believe that showing skin is sexy.  Christina Mead once said, “Don’t let the crowd tell you that skin equals sexy, and that’s the only way to be beautiful.”  She shares a great point.  If you walk around a school you see many girls, more than you can count on your hands and toes, who reveal themselves.  Girls get it in their heads that if they have their boobs out then they will be sexy and beautiful.  What they don’t know is that scandalous is not a true beautiful way to look.  When they show off their bodies they also lose the sense of wonder.  Emma Watson said in an interview, “What’s sexy about saying ‘I’m here with my boobs out and a short skirt, have a look at everything I’ve got?’ My idea of sexy is that less is more.  The less you reveal the more people can wonder.”  Her statement about less is more, meaning the less you reveal is more, is a statement of respect.  When you show yourself off it is a statement of disrespect towards yourself.  An anonymous man said, "The girl who chooses to be modest chooses to be respected. 

A boy who is honest with himself will admit that he likes a girl who is modest in speech, conduct, and dress.  Modesty is one of the great virtues he looks for in the girl he hopes to marry.  Most of us know what is modest, and most of us know when modesty ends and immodesty commences.  We know that nothing detracts from the loveliness of a young lady more than immodesty in speech or immodesty in conduct.  A girl fools only herself if she thinks she is impressing a boy by immodest conduct.  The young lady who dresses in an immodest manner ceases to be attractive and embarrasses the young man.  She has called his attention to the person rather than the personality.  The girl who chooses to be modest, chooses to be respected.”  This man has a grasp on life that many women and men do not.  When you disrespect yourself you are setting yourself up to be judged.  An anonymous man states that “what you put on your body ‘talks.’  And, everyone who sees you ‘hears’ what you’re saying.  Dressing modestly is important because those around us judge us by how we appear.  What you wear tells others who you are.”  I don’t know if you want people around you talking about you in a way of disrespect.  Many girls like to say mean things and when you are immodest you give them a free ticket to talk about you all they want.  I don’t know if you care if they say “she’s a slut” or “she only cares about hooking up,” but I surely do care.

Girls need to realize that guys want a confident, respectful, real girl.

Another problem facing our society in the concept of modesty is, the men.  Girls believe that dressing immodestly is what guys want.  To be honest, some guys do want just that.  Those guys just want the “action.”  There are also many other guys who choose differently, and they are the guys that matter.  A real guy who likes you for who you are on the inside would want you to be covered up and does not care about the revealing clothing.  Taylor Lautner says “I think a girl is most attractive when wearing sweats and just being herself.”  When Chris Evans was asked “What in a girl makes you melt?” he says “I’m a sucker for modesty.  When you find someone who is beautiful, talented, intelligent, and compassionate and who can still look at herself in the mirror and have no idea that she’s wonderful, that’s just so attractive to me.”  Chris is actually talking about modesty in the personality context.  It goes along with clothing modesty because in order to be modest on the inside, you have to start by being modest on the outside.  “I like a girl who doesn’t put style before comfort.  I like natural, unmade-up look-a girl who is comfortable not only in her clothes but in her own skin” states Hayden Christensen.  He is just another of many guys who could care less about how much a girls’ outfit reveals.  Many guys actually want girls to dress modestly.  They see immodest women and wish they chose differently.  Howard W. Hunter says in his book for girls to "Dress modestly.  You girls go and find the modest clothes and wear them, make them as beautiful as you can and be attractive and make up to your boyfriends in bright intellect and sweet spirit and attractive demeanor that which some girls can only do with their bodies.  It is a pretty weak girl if she has only her body to attract somebody."  Girls need to realize that guys want a confident, respectful, real girl.  They do not look at the immodest girls when looking for the real girls.  When I say real, I mean a girl who can say “I am wearing modest clothing because I believe that I am beautiful no matter what.”

Modesty comes down to having confidence in yourself.  You have to have the confidence to say you want someone who appreciates you for who you are not the clothes you wear.  A designer named Anna Hawkins says that she would “rather have someone appreciate me for who I am rather than the way my body looks.”  She understands that your outward appearance will lead you to heartbreak and disappointment.  This all comes back to a sense of respect.  Respect for others and respect for yourself.  Modesty is also a sense of feeling beautiful within.  It is about feeling comfortable in your own skin.  Angelina Jolie shares that she “often felt unattractive or different looking.  As I’ve grown up, I’ve felt more comfortable in my own skin.  It may sound cliché, but when you feel beautiful and strong on the inside, it shows on the outside.”  I can’t stress enough how modesty starts with confidence.  “The expression a woman wears on her face is more important than the clothes she wears on her back.” Dale Carnegie states.  Girls need to start wearing a bigger expression on their face to get noticed, not less clothes on their bodies.

Many women are so preoccupied with turning men’s heads that they overlook their power to turn our hearts.

Françoise Sagan says “A dress makes no sense unless it inspires men to want to take it off you.”  Personally, I find this disgusting.  Clothing is not supposed to be a way to seduce someone.  The problem is that girls choose to think differently.  A man states that “Although a girl deserves respect no matter what she wears, a guy can tell how much a woman respects herself by how she is dressed. If she does not respect herself, the odds are that guys will follow her lead. In the heart of a woman, there is no desire to be a sex object. Is there a desire to receive attention, affection, and love?  Certainly, but is there a desire to be reduced to an object? No girl wants to go there, but many do for the sake of receiving emotional gratification.”  Sometimes girls don’t act like themselves because they are trying to impress a guy.  They often dress inappropriately to impress him.  An author from said “A woman who dresses modestly inspires a guy in a way that I am not ashamed to admit I cannot explain. I suppose it is safe to say that it conveys your worth to us. When a woman dresses modestly, I can take her seriously as a woman because she doesn't look like she's begging for attention. She knows that she’s worth discovering. Such humility is radiant. Unfortunately, many women are so preoccupied with turning men’s heads that they overlook their power to turn our hearts.”  When you find true love you have turned a guy’s heart, but your love is fake if you have just turned his head.  He “loves” you because of the clothes you wear not the person you are.  Honestly, I feel bad for the girls who lack the confidence in themselves.  In today’s society it is very difficult for a girl to look at herself and think she is beautiful.

So it all comes down to the question, “what exactly is modesty?”  Modesty means freedom from vanity. Vanity means excessive pride in one's appearance.  Sir Richard Steele says “nothing can atone for the lack of modesty; without which beauty is ungraceful and wit detestable.”  Atone means make amends for a wrong and detestable means hateful.  A lack of modesty is looked upon as ungraceful and hateful.  When you girls get dressed for wherever you are going think twice about your outfit.  When you have to ask the questions “is this too short” or “is this modest” you found your answer.  Make the right choice and don’t refrain from chastity.  An anonymous man said that modesty “is not about looking as ugly as possible. It is about taking the natural beauty of womanhood and adorning it in a way that reflects one’s true identity.”  Reflect your true beauty.  Girls, find a guy who cherishes you for you.  A guy that would give you a coat if he thought your outfit was immodest.  A guy that likes you for who you are, not the clothes you wear.  Most importantly, always remember that “modesty is the beauty of a woman.”

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Reader Comments (1)

Very well done. You were so thorough, I don't have anything to add except to say that I agree completely. Thank you for being passionate about modesty in a world so conflicted.

April 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSarahBee

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