How to be sexy, you’re welcome

It’s a fascinating time to be a ‘mormon’. There are a lot of opinions and views and people seem to be really into cherry picking beliefs these days, but this is one value I want to talk about today: Modesty.

I honestly couldn’t care one iota if you are modest or not. I don’t care if you are a modest mormon or a atheist mini skirt, tube-top wearing whatever. What I DO care about is how disappointing it is that so many people can’t stick to what they say they believe and how people are finding their beauty and confidence from external sources.

The word modesty probably has most people thinking about some very ultra religious group or frumpy clothing….

amish women
Honestly tho, these grandmas as sooooo cute. I love them. I tried to find a frumpy clothing pic but found this and just loved how much they are owning this so here you go. I want to go wherever they are going and hang out with them.

but there are a looooooooot of high-class modest fashion people out there. (Guys, the muslim world is so much better at this than I ever knew.) Lots of religions are modest and covered and still have amazing fashion and confidence and feel sexy!

You know what’s a great role model? Someone who sticks to what they believe even when the whole world tells them to change and be different. Someone who ignores people that tell them they have to wear swimming suits that show off their bodies if they want to have boys like them and be sexy or that you can’t wear your modest attire to the gym or you’ll look dumb and not be able to get a good workout. Checkout these amazingly powerful, fashionable, sexy, beautiful women sticking to what they believe. Rock on, muslims.

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Please, please if you’re a girl reading this can you just realize that following whatever it is that you believe is a million times sexier than feeling like you have to look a certain way or show a certain amount of skin to be accepted or sexy? Being who you really are is where your confidence will come from and THAT my friend is so, so sexy.

It is beyond annoying to me when mormon girls (or anyone claiming to belong to a group that holds a certain belief but goes against it while still claiming membership) post things contrary to what mormons are supposed to believe doctrinally. I don’t care if people leave the church and become Buddhist monks or join some random group that believes in walking around naked, but why claim to be good church-going mormons while posting outfits that no garments would ever work with…? (Yes, I know that not all Mormons that go to church are endowed but the bloggers and Instagramers and people I know that I’m talking about and keep seeing everywhere all are). I don’t care AT ALL if they wear their garments. But what I do care about is how many people can’t seem to live genuine lives of where they are and what they really think. It’s harmful to the communities you’re claiming to represent.

If you’re not wearing your garments anymore or following standards that are clearly stated in church doctrine, just own it and be real with people! If you’re claiming to be the “real deal” and the temple-going garment women but also posting a bunch of photos that don’t fit that…. why??? I’m so confused by this. Just pick! And embrace it. You know someone who is doing a great job of this and being real? Mindy Gledhil. She has recently left the church and posts very genuine, real, and beautiful posts. She’s changed! Changing is fine. But please embrace it and own it and don’t hide behind some fake facade. Here’s another refreshing person to follow. I love how she beautifully and carefully writes about finding things that really represent her and fit her value scale. She’s become one of my new favorite people to follow on Instagram because she is real. Be real, people.

I actually DMed one of these mormon fashion bloggers because I am that person (lol), just asking them about it. She was super nice and said, “I try to wear (my garments) as much as possible, however when I’m shooting 5 outfits and need to change in my car and have to bring all different types of garments to accommodate different types of clothes…. sometimes it’s just easier to wear spanx underneath everything for my shoot and call it a day!” Giiiiiiirrrrrlllll. You’re not wearing your garments because it’s easier to not wear them? Being convicted to a cause or a belief is never going to be easy. This girl often posts in clothes that no garments could accommodate, even if she had brought them, but she also does post a lot of clothing that would fit garments. She is for sure not one of the worst as far as posting things outside of her value scale she says she believes, in my opinion.

Sidenote: if you’re posting things that conflict, it may be possible that you should reevaluate what you really believe and own it. I would love to see you really own it! No one should be forced to wear anything that they don’t want to!

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Look at this beautiful picture of a women who’s home had recently been freed from ISIS. The Islamic State had forced the women to cover their faces and this picture shows so much joy as she is finally free! Notice she still wants to wear the hijab though, and that’s great!

hijab
“I felt liberated,” Hamidi told Reuters after swapping her black face-covering veil for a red head scarf. “They made us wear it against our will so I removed it that way to spite them.”

Supporting women means supporting them when they choose to take clothes off but also when they choose to put clothes on. Did you know that right now our first muslim women congresswomen are working to legalize the headscarf in congress? People love telling people what to wear! Ignore them. I bet she feels sexy and confident as she sports her hijab and stands up in front of the world to support her values and make change! So sexy.

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Again, it doesn’t matter what you wear – what matters is that you believe in what you wear and do you and own it!

My annoyance to this all hit a high yesterday when a girl I follow on social media put out a blog post called, “My Boudoir Shoot: It’s Okay To Be Sexy”  Apparently she was getting tons of comments from women who felt very inspired by this post, and I actually think she does an amazing job at helping women accept their bodies. She advocates for body positivity and does an excellent job of it! She said she wrote this post because she was sick of people body shaming her, specifically Mormons telling her to cover up instead of always being so naked on social media. I get this. No one likes to feel judged, however I also agree that it would be really annoying to be trying to teach your mormon daughter about modesty when “mormon” role models are telling them, embrace your body and bare all and THAT’S the way to be sexy and confident!

I feel sad that people in this blogger’s life failed her and made her feel ashamed of her body from a young age. I feel sad that she felt uncomfortable in her body all growing up and felt like she had to hide her larger frame. I’ve been curvy from a young age and never had this negativity in my life. I was always taught about the value of being modest and why and then told, “You know when you’re being modest, choose wisely.” The end. No on ever shamed me because I filled something out more than another girl. Isn’t that the truest? Of course we know when we are being modest or not according to how we are defining it internally. But if you’re mormon, once you’re older and you make covenants in the temple you get garments and a pretty clear outline of what modern prophets have said is the standard of modesty God wants.

But anyways, the point is you do NOT have to show your body off to be sexy. Sarah could have felt sexy regardless of the amount of clothing she was or was not wearing in that blog post. I firmly think that being sexy is directly correlated to being confident, not correlated to how much skin you’re showing or how much your significant other values your body. I cringed when I read in her blog, “When I met Robbie (her now husband), he immediately began changing that perception I had (of being too big with low self-esteem). Suddenly, this new guy in my life was telling me how sexy my thick thighs were. I still remember back when we first started dating, he looked at me like I was crazy when I complained about not having a thigh gap. “Babe, your big thighs are one of the sexiest things about you!!” he said. Little by little, he was helping me along in my own self-love journey by providing the support and encouragement I’d never felt.” It is great to have cheerleaders when we feel down, but you can’t get all of your confidence from outside sources! You have to find that confidence by realizing that you are worth love and worthy of your value regardless of what anyone else thinks about you or your thigh gap.

She’s so close to being the role model we need, but lots of the comments in her and her sweet husband’s social media are all about women wishing they had a man like Robbie to make them feel confident and loved and happy, and that’s not where it should come from. Yeah, it helps a lot to have a boyfriend that thinks you’re beautiful. But what if he changed? What if he left? What if something happens and you don’t have the person you’re getting your confidence from? SOS! Nothing about this is healthy.

Girl. You can be a babe and be sexy and be confident and be whatever you want and you don’t need anyone else to do it. If you wanna rock that mini skirt, do it. If you want to cover up your skin and wear some beautiful clothes that cover yourself head to toe, rock it. The clothes and the boy do NOT make the girl. YOU make the girl. Your value and voice and ability to stick to what you really believe in and to debate a cause you care about or silently support those you care about through acts of service or whatever the heck you want to do because it’s what your value system says, that’s what makes you sexy. Develop the confidence to decide what you believe about this beautiful, crazy world and your amazingly imperfect self and love yourself anyways – independent of anyone else. And then own it! Please don’t be fake or go against what you believe in to “fit in”.

Be healthy. Get restful sleep knowing you’re genuinely being who you really are. Don’t let your head tell yourself negative things. Eat amazing, colorful food. Don’t put garbage into your body. Move – as much as you can and feel that blood pumping through your capable awesome limbs. Try new things. Wear clothes you like that make you feel good, regardless of what the size on the label says and even if they aren’t trendy or “cool”. Laugh as much as you can and enjoy the things that you actually like, even if no one else that you currently know does – your people are out there! Show as much skin, or as little, as you want and believe you should. Don’t be anything that you don’t really believe. Life is too short to waste time pretending you’re something you’re not, and we all need a whole lot more genuine people in our news feeds and in our relationships.

13 Comments Add yours

  1. Anon says:

    I mostly agree with you, but I have some things to point out.

    Number one, you mostly point out Mormons as being the ones who say they believe but then don’t wear their garments. And then proceed to share Muslim women who are awesome at wearing their hijab? I think it’s only fair to compare to Mormons who do wear their garments to these awesome Muslim women, and then showcase both Mormons and Muslims who don’t wear hijab but say they believe. This comparison felt unfair as touting Muslims to be awesome and perfectly following their religion when that’s just not the case. In all religions there is a variety of people on different journeys figuring out where their testimony is. Some people might have a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon but haven’t fully gained a testimony of the temple – it might have nothing to do with sexiness. They have the right to both believe in parts of the gospel while still struggling with others. Some members have been faithful their whole life but once they go through the temple they don’t know how they feel. It may take them time to figure that out and gain a testimony of their garments, and I don’t think they owe it to anyone to post their testimony online while they figure it out. Faith isn’t black or white, we can believe in something and still not perfectly follow it.

    I’d also like to point out that some people may not wear their garments for other reasons than sexiness. Have you ever worn carinessa in the heat of an Arizona summer? Have you ever gone on a photo shoot that required you to hike to a pretty spot? Garments are HOT. They just are. And while I agree that people should prioritize wearing them, their reasoning may not be about sexiness but practicality. You honestly don’t know their intentions whether they’re an influencer or not.

    And lastly I’d like to point out that modesty is subjective. What pioneers considered modest is different than what India considers modest and what modern white Mormon Americans consider modest. Shoulders, stomachs, and upper thighs are body parts that are not sexual, but modern Mormon culture has decided that they are. So you can see why it’s hard to consider one thing modest when the standards have changed throughout the decades?

    Overall I agree with the idea that you can be sexy and modest, and that you shouldn’t get your confidence from showing off your body, but personally the way modesty has been taught throughout the church has negatively affected many women’s views of their body. Some women feel sexier with less clothes and they have the right to do that without completely disowning their faith. They get to figure out their testimony one principle at a time, not all or nothing.

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    1. suzannemarie says:

      Thanks so much for sharing this awesome comment. I loved reading it. I remember wearing garments in India and being annoyed that the poor indian members had to deal with a church that was very Americanized. Both in what it sees as modest and the fabrics and ways garments are made. It’s not immodest to show your stomach in India, but super immodest to show your legs. The church isn’t much of a global church.

      It’s hard to show mormon’s wearing their garments, since you can’t see them which is why I choose to highlight something more visible. And even more extreme in being covered, but still looking beautiful.

      I loved your comment about people posting their testimony online and not having to do that while they figure it out. It’s hard to do – I have seen people I admire doing a great job of it. We often don’t know who is struggling with believing something or not, but I think everyone can strive to be more genuine. If you’re not posting all about how youre LDS and your temple wedding while also never posting photos that are modest at all then this post isn’t about you. It was a call to embrace where you are and be more genuine and accepting of yourself and what you really think and believe rather than having double standards.

      Like

  2. addie says:

    ‘“ I do not care if she wears her garments AT ALL…but I direct messaged her and asked her thought process because it was bugging me so bad. I mean, I totally don’t care at all…but I’m writing an entire article about it.” Lol WHAT??? in any context, DMing someone about their underwear is creepy as hell. Why do you care?! Her underwear, her covenants, HER LIFE. (But, for clarification, nowhere do we covenant to wear the garment literally 24/7). I really wish the ‘garment police’ would stop. Even if she takes off her garments just for fun, it’s literally no ones business. Worry bout your own self!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. suzannemarie says:

      lol sorry you’re right that does sound a little confusing. I DMed her story because she was talking about this topic. It wasn’t a random DM. And I’m not sure if you’re endowed, but the temple goes over very explicit instructions with garment wearing when you go through and it’s pretty 24/7. There are a couple places that are your own discretion, but people that take their garments off for an hour or two to work out or whatever isn’t what this is about. I’m not trying to be the garment police; like I said I don’t care if you wear them or not. But I DO care about people being genuine.

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  3. Miss says:

    People like this author are the number 1 biggest problem in the church today.. sorry about the beam in your own eye. I honestly can’t get over how self-righteous and stereotypical this is.. people say that members are judge mental pricks and you try and defend the church, then you see something like this.. I would be WAY more embarrassed to go to church having written something as horrible and hateful(yes this is hateful even though she tries to pretend it isn’t) than to go to church wearing a spaghetti strap dress. Imagine if an investigator who is learning about love and accepting others from the missionaries stumbled on this blog? Do you think they would think that this is a good church to join? Or that they wouldn’t be judged because everyone has their own sins and we are all trying to get better and improve individually? This post couldn’t be more contrary to the gospel, unfortunately it is what people call Mormon Culture now days which the church is trying to confront head on because it is competent opposite to the teachings of Christ.

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    1. suzannemarie says:

      Hey thanks for the comment. I don’t think you should ever be embarrassed to come to church in whatever dress you want. But I would think it’s probably not the best if the Spaghetti strap dress wearer is also the temple endowed RS president teaching class etc. This post isn’t saying that people aren’t and shouldn’t be in different places in their own personal conversion. But this post IS saying that if you’re posting and portraying yourself as a very active, endowed member of the church then you should be what you say you are. If you’re not, that’s fine too. Just be genuine. I would hope that an investigator would see the people’s actions matching their words and not just being hypocritical or fake.

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  4. bequirox says:

    You might recognize this quote from one of your own blog posts:

    “Please let people know they can stay in the church and we want them to stay, even if they can’t have recommends or if they aren’t doing things perfect or they have big doubts.”

    Unless they don’t wear their garments 100%, then they should leave the church. Right?

    How hypocritical can one person get? You really, truly, should consider deleting this post.

    “I don’t care what you wear! Except that I super care, as evidenced by this excessively long judgemental post about what you’re wearing. And if you’re not wearing garments 100% as I interpret the doctrine, you should probably consider leaving the church.”

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    1. suzannemarie says:

      Right, and I think that there should be room for people to learn and fail and grow. But this post is aimed at people that are pretending and claiming to be super active but actively going against church teachings, which is hurtful for all parties. This post isn’t about what people are or aren’t wearing, it’s about being more genuine.

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  5. Sarah says:

    It is beyond annoying to me when a member of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ uses the term “Mormon” when the prophet has said not to. Why claim to be a good church going member when posting blogs against the prophet?

    Like

    1. suzannemarie says:

      I don’t think I ever said in this that I’m a good church going member 😉

      Just wanting people to be more genuine and not feel like they have to feel pressure to be anything other than who they are.

      Like

  6. Alli says:

    Reading through these comments… and dang, you’re getting some heat for this post! But I think I understand what you’re trying to say, and I don’t think you’re coming across as the “garment police.” I think you want people to be more genuine, which you have expressed a few times in your responses. (It reminds me of a really good talk I LOVE called “Honest, Simple, Solid, True” by Terry Warner. It’s a BYU Speech and I think you’d love it.) I think the written word is sometimes inadequate when it comes to these kinds of topics, but if the commenters on this post and you all sat down together and had a good discussion about it, you’d probably see more eye-to-eye than we all think, you know? Anyway, I appreciate your thoughts and think it’s cool that you’re being bold and expressing your beliefs in what I saw as a respectful way.

    Like

    1. suzannemarie says:

      Thanks for the kind words. I knew this was a touchy subject, but I get real annoyed when people try and use “Mormon” as part of the personal brand while misrepresenting the community. Most people I know that are actually unsure of their faith or are having a hard time are not the bloggers that are also out branding their profiles all over the place as LDS and not who this was directed at.

      Like

    2. suzannemarie says:

      And thanks for the recommendation! I can’t wait to read it. ❤

      Like

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