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Girl to Girl Talk: Should Christian Girls Wear Bikinis?

bikinis

 Every week, I go through the “Girl Talk” section of Project Inspired and look for those seeking advice and council. I want to help answer some questions you may have about living out your Christian life and walk of faith! We want PI to be a safe place where you can ask questions.

This week’s question comes from a PI Girl who is asking if bikinis are too risqué and immodest. Since spring is already here and summer will be approaching before we know it, I thought this topic was quite relevant and also fun to discuss! Here is the question she posted:

Hey guys, I’ve been struggling with this topic for quite awhile now and I was wondering what your intake was on it…bikinis. Are they okay? Everyone wears bikinis and I know that’s not an excuse to be allowed to wear them but they aren’t as hot as tankinis and they are cute. But the problem is, I feel like whenever girls wear bikinis, all the guys care about is her body. Any opinions??

This is a great question and one that likely will elicit a variety of responses. I think it definitely depends on your age, your style and whom you are around. If you are with some close friends and go to a spa or to a private pool with family, a bikini could be fine. If you know you are going to be around a lot of boys and it might make them stumble, then you might want to wear a cover-up, a wrap skirt or a tankini.

I personally grew up at the beach, so I am used to two-piece bathing suits. When they are tiny bikinis that are inappropriate, or if you are showing so much skin that it is tasteless, then, yes, I agree that you should not wear them.

Too many girls nowadays want to grow up so fast, look more mature and “hotter” or “sexier” than their age, but sometimes it’s too much. With peer pressure and the desire to be accepted, this can be a hard thing to understand.

c30494

I really like this tankini set from Kohl’s…what do you think PI, girls?

If you are a teen or a pre-teen, it is age appropriate to wear a tankini or a one-piece bathing suit. Nicole loves the one-piece now because they are more modest and don’t show so much skin. Nowadays, there are so many cute one-piece bathing suits and so many options for tankinis as well.

If you wear a two-piece I don’t believe you should be judged, AND if you don’t wear a two-piece you shouldn’t bring down someone who does. It is all about wisdom and wearing what is appropriate. Also, your mom or parental guardian probably has an opinion on this as well! Trust an adult’s opinions since they have some extra perspective.

For most girls on this site, I would recommend a tasteful tankini or a cute one-piece. Maybe a polka dot one, or a cute striped one. Patterns are fun and so are bright colors!

hat

I love this picture of Nicole…wear a fun hat with your one-piece for a more fashionable, fun look!

PI girls, what is your opinion on this topic? Do you think bikinis are too immodest? Are tankinis are better for teens? Take the poll below, then share more of your thoughts in the comments!

Poll

What do you think about bikinis?

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Image: GoodShoot | ThinkStock + PI

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COMMENTS 277

  1. Project Inspired

    Posted by heidi_pontmercy on August 15, 2014 at 08:52

    I think that its okay to wear a bikini, as long as it’s not too revealing and skimpy. I have never worn a bikini to be honest, but I just don’t have the right body to be comfortable in one. I feel that if you are comfortable and your parents approve of it, then its okay.

  2. Project Inspired

    Posted by cjulin on July 4, 2014 at 15:46

    Look, I know I’m not a girl, but I think in this instance it would be good to hear a male perspective. I’m a college-age male and I have recently written a blog post in response to this very issue (modesty in specific). I ask that you also read the comments, as there are some clarifications made there. Whether or not you agree with it, I hope it will make you think.

    http://mountaintopfloridiot.blogspot.com/2014/07/a-meditation-on-forgotten-faith-of.html

  3. Maurelle

    Posted by Maurelle on June 16, 2014 at 10:10

    Personally, I don’t think that Christian girls should wear bikinis, and I wouldn’t want to. My thoughts on the matter were set when I learned about a study that shows that when men see a woman in a bikini the part of their brain that uses tools is triggered, but when they see a woman dressed more modestly the part of their brain is triggered that deals with personal relationships. Not taking that into account, I still think it’s too revealing to wear bikinis and not respectful of our brothers in Christ, or to Christ Himself.

  4. freedomlights

    Posted by freedomlights on June 16, 2014 at 10:01

    I have both a tankini and a bikini, and I switch them out depending on the occasion and who I’m with. If I’m going to a pool party or somewhere I know there will be a lot of guys, I’ll wear the tankini and usually running shorts over the swimsuit. If I’m just going to the beach with girls or tanning or something, I wear the bikini. It does depend on which bikini, though, because I don’t like the ones that are hardly more than a bra. I prefer the bandeau style that has a fringe or something else going down over the front of the suit. I like my stomach open if I’m going to be tanning, but the fringe on my suit hides my top. The bottom is also a mini-skirt type of thing, so nothing is hanging out.

    It really depends on the suit, though, and who I’m with. If all else fails, I just wear running shorts and a sports bra.

  5. Project Inspired

    Posted by Kimmie33 on June 15, 2014 at 19:53

    Even though I own a bikini, I still try to wear a tanking when swimming at my local pool. I can sometimes be a little self-conscious of myself, so I may only wear my bikini when swimming with my girlfriends. I personally do not like skimpy bikinis, but my favorite are the bandeau style. :-)

  6. BunnyLuvver

    Posted by BunnyLuvver on June 15, 2014 at 18:28

    I don’t want a creeper getting all excited over what I’m wearing, so I bought a [short] black skirt-type bottom and I change out my tops based on the occasion or what I feel like wearing that day. I also always try to keep a tank top on hand just in case I’m hanging with my friends and something happens. I save money on swimwear and no one has to look at my behind. I am so thankful the tankini came back though! Shopping for a modest suit was getting too hard to do. :)

  7. Project Inspired

    Posted by Equine99 on June 15, 2014 at 15:27

    I always wear a bikini, but not because I wanna be seen by a boy or anything like that but because tankini’s and one pieces don’t look right on me. I also try to find more modest swim tops and bottoms to wear. Most of them are just too skimpy. :-P

  8. kaseymay26

    Posted by kaseymay26 on June 15, 2014 at 14:09

    I only wear bikinis with my girlfriends. Anywhere else, especially in public or front of my boyfriend I wear tankinis or a one piece, because it’s inappropriate otherwise. Modesty is super important when trying to be a light to this dark world or maintaining a pure, innocent, God-centered relationship :)

    • godzbeeb

      Posted by godzbeeb on July 25, 2014 at 22:26

      I think that’s a great plan. I’m not allowed to wear bikinis but that’s what I would do if I did. :)

  9. cowgurl4lyfe

    Posted by cowgurl4lyfe on June 15, 2014 at 13:48

    I don’t think that we can label all bikinis as immodest and I don’t think we can label all one piece of tankinis as modest either. I’ve learned that it really depends on the swimsuit. Once I tried on this really cute one piece only to find out that it showed cleavage so I actually ended up buying this bikini that shows zero cleavage and often times I wear board shorts with it. It’s really cute and covers up my chest very well.

    So I really think it depends on the swimsuit. There are a lot of immodest tankinis and one piece swimsuits that are popular right now. I work at target and we have a large swimsuit selection right now, but ALL of the swimsuits (whether they are tankinis, bikinis, or one pieces) are extremely immodest and I wouldn’t buy any of them. I do like a lot of Kohl’s selection though. They have a lot of modest swimsuits and that’s where I buy mine.

    Really I just think the level of modesty depends on the swimsuit, not on the categories (bikini, tankini, one piece) they are put in.

  10. mirandy

    Posted by mirandy on June 15, 2014 at 13:32

    I wear one but I have a rash guard to go over the top for two reasons. 1) My mom wouldn’t let me get a bikini if I didn’t have it. 2) Because I can’t get sunburnt through it seeing as it’s upf 50.

  11. Project Inspired

    Posted by babblingbrooke51 on June 15, 2014 at 13:01

    Maybe we should be teaching boys to respect what’s inside the bodies they seem to appreciate so much. Instead of putting the responsibility to keep boys pure on girls, we should hold boys accountable. There is nothing wrong with bikinis. There is nothing wrong with one pieces. That is a decision of personal preference. It is, however, wrong to teach girls that there is something dirty about the female body, and by even writing this article, that is what we are perpetuating. Stop sexualizing women and holding them responsible for the actions and thoughts of boys. We are trying to fix a problem at the wrong end. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for modesty, but what anyone wears, modest or otherwise, should not be judged or used as a segway into the “have you heard about Jesus” conversation. God loves everyone regardless of how they dress, and so should we.

    • BunnyLuvver

      Posted by BunnyLuvver on June 15, 2014 at 18:41

      I agree with what your saying, but guys shouldn’t get all the blame. If we taught girls to respect themselves, some- not all- boys would respect them too. If a guy doesn’t respect me I basically let him know his perversion is not welcome and if he doesn’t chill out he can buzz off. If I don’t have that respect for my own body then how can I expect it from someone else? I’m not mean about it, I just know I’m not a piece of meat. I don’t flaunt around half-naked in G-strings or leave idle time for eyes or hands to wander when I’m with guy friends or dates. I get the fact that those behaviors would just be baiting one of my friends to sin after me. I realize that I am beautifully and wonderfully made and I also do have a “nice” body so I treat it as a Temple of the Holy Spirit. What I’m saying is that it’s a struggle on both ends, not just one or the other.

  12. Project Inspired

    Posted by Ceo2000 on June 15, 2014 at 12:51

    Personally, I think 2 piece bathing suits are okay as long is your boob and butt are both covered. Although it may be difficult, it is possible to find bikinis that do that! Target is where I found mine. They have some cute one pieces there too!

  13. Speak4Elohim

    Posted by Speak4Elohim on June 15, 2014 at 12:11

    I would NEVER wear a bikini, and would only wear a tankini if it was really modest. I do wear a 2 piece, but it’s a surfers top (you know, the ones that are basically t-shirt made out of swimsuit material) and a pair of guys swim short with the net cut out. I wear a bikini under those for extra coverage, just in case somehow my swimsuit were to… idk, come off or something. I was going to have a scuba-style suit, but it was a bit pricey.

  14. Ldawg57

    Posted by Ldawg57 on June 15, 2014 at 12:05

    It’s not so black and white but I agree that certain swimsuits are appropriate for certain situations. Like, if you’re just hanging out, tanning with your girlfriends I think a bikini would be alright. But if you’re around let’s say your boyfriend’s family or a bunch of dudes, I personally would feel pretty uncomfortable. But that’s just me. Also, some bikinis are much more revealing than others. Like some of the Victoria’s Secret string bikinis…..nuff said there.
    Soo I think girls should just use good judgement and try not be too revealing. I have seen some super cute one-pieces on Modcloth, just saying!

  15. kittycheychey

    Posted by kittycheychey on June 15, 2014 at 12:02

    i don’t really like them that much mostly cause i have issues with showing my stomach
    i stick to one pieces. so much more flattering on my body type

  16. Uchiha_Kaida

    Posted by Uchiha_Kaida on June 15, 2014 at 11:39

    I personally don’t like them. Like, I would probably wear one IF I was at a private pool with close friends. But at a beach, or public pool, I would wear a tankini. I have a tankini and I like it, I feel comfortable. Plus bikinis are usually expensive, and if you get caught in a wave, it might slip off.

  17. Project Inspired

    Posted by Meggybeez on June 15, 2014 at 11:33

    In my opinion I personally would never wear a bikini. I’ve always been taught to wear more modest clothing, especially when you’re in public. But if you really think about it, bikinis give the same amount of coverage, and also look very similar to a bra and underwear. So the way I think about it is, if you wouldn’t wear just your bra and underwear in public, why wear a bikini?

  18. lrivers26

    Posted by lrivers26 on June 15, 2014 at 11:28

    I think that it all depends. Personally I am not in shape to wear a bikini and if I was in shape I don’t think I would. But I do like the high waisted bikini. They do have to be high waisted, because some might say high waisted and only come up to the belly button where as some other high waisted bikini cover most of the mid section. Like the 1940s type. I have never owned a tankini but I think that they are modest too. I would ware one.

  19. lindsaypederson1

    Posted by lindsaypederson1 on June 15, 2014 at 11:01

    I think that it very much depends on the modesty of the bikini. I personally prefer much more reserved clothing, modest. I used to wear tankini’s and love them! I still wear them too! But I do have a bikini. It’s a bit like a sporty kind so it covers me up on the top and it’s frilly so it covers a little bit more of me then normal bikinis do. Instead of a bikini bottom I have a little skirt! Honestly, I believe that you should wear something you’re comfortable in! The Bible does talk strongly about the importance of modesty and I strongly believe in that too, and I think that in the end it comes down to being able to discern what is appropriate and what is not. (How I think of it when I buy a swimsuit is what would my Grandpa say? Or my dad or older brother?) I don’t have anything against bikinis, but I think sometimes we as girls should realize what treasures we are in God’s eyes, and if we’re not protecting that treasure, then what are we doing to it?

  20. Fuscha.Dragon77

    Posted by Fuscha.Dragon77 on June 15, 2014 at 10:10

    Answer this: would you wear your bra and underwear out in public?

    Would you be embarrassed if someone opened your door and you were only wearing your undergarments?

    Your answers are probably (and hopefully) no for the first question and yes for the second. Then why, ladies, would you wear a bikini out in public?? It is the EXACT same thing. You would probably feel very much violated if some guy was staring at you and you only had your underwear and bra on. There is no difference. So we should respect ourselves and our bodies. We should not cause other’s to stumble just because we want to look “sexy”. No one gets anything out of it except for us being considered an object. I hope you girls out there will take this to heart.

  21. meganst2015

    Posted by meganst2015 on June 15, 2014 at 09:56

    I personally feel like as a Christian, I should not wear a bikini. It speaks the wrong message. If I’m going to dress modestly normally, why would I want to wear something immodest like a bikini? It definitely sends the wrong message.

  22. Project Inspired

    Posted by ivyandroses on June 15, 2014 at 09:38

    I wouldn’t wear a bikini for a very simple reason: by the time you wear one, what exactly are you hiding? It’s literally the very minimum amount of fabric necessary to not get arrested for public nudity (at least, in my state). I don’t know, guys. I won’t judge your hearts but I’m not really a fan of skimpy pieces. Especially after learning a little about their history, they don’t make sense to me.

  23. Project Inspired

    Posted by JessicaLee163 on June 15, 2014 at 09:28

    I used to wear bikinis, but now I don’t. They are pretty much underwear and don’t leave much to the imagination. If you think about it, guys are always modest, covered from their neck to their knees typically (other than when they take their shirts off, which I don’t think is very modest.) Imagine a guy wearing a bikini. Seems ridiculous, right? There’s barely any coverage. We think that guys just need to stay pure minded, which is true. But is it really fair to wear two skimpy triangles and practically undies and expect them to not look at our bodies? The least we can do as God’s precious daughters is honor our bodies and wear tankinis or one pieces. Remember, girls, we were bought with a price; we should honor God and respect the body He gave us.

  24. All4Godsluv

    Posted by All4Godsluv on June 15, 2014 at 08:29

    I wear one. I love mine. I also have a one piece that has the sides cut out for more cover on some occasions. I wear my nice competition suit when I need full cover. I think there is nothing wrong with bikinis as long as the actually cover (some really dont) I don’t think string are good but other than that I am all for them, just get one that covers. What I do is wear shorts over the buttons if I feel they don’t cover enough. Never wear a bikini just walking to the pool cover ups are always good (at the beach, public pool) wear a cover up to the location if you have a pool in your backyard than it is fine to not wear a cover up outside.

  25. Project Inspired

    Posted by Loco_laney on June 15, 2014 at 08:25

    Didn’t God intend for everyone to be nude originally?

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by JessicaLee163 on June 15, 2014 at 09:33

      Yes, but after sin came into the world, then came lust and inpure thoughts. So, now, because we’ve sinned, we feel shame in being naked and vulnerable. God doesn’t want us to feel that shame and for guys to stumble with impure thoughts, so now we have to cover up. It wasn’t in His design for us to feel ashamed in being naked and for guys to think impure thoughts, but now that there’s sin in the world, these feelings are there.

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by ivyandroses on June 15, 2014 at 09:32

      Yes, but that was before the sin of Adam and Eve. After they sinned and received knowledge, they then realized they were naked and tried to cover themselves. We still cover ourselves with modesty today, and historically so do even non-Christian cultures with their natural knowledge of what modesty is.

  26. Project Inspired

    Posted by lemonade021 on June 15, 2014 at 08:21

    I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, too… I’ve worn bikinis in the past and just bought a really cute new one over spring break. But something about this time was different. At other times when I wore bikinis it was no big deal, just a swimsuit, and I didn’t really think about it; but this time I realized that I bought it because, honestly, it made me look “sexy”, and I wanted other people to see it. Jeez, how embarrassing–because that’s not really the kind of person I am. For some reason I just wanted the attention. (I haven’t worn it in public since.)
    So I think a lot of the question is the heart behind it. I think a bikini is really only a problem if you’re wearing it to show off, wanting people to see your body and admire it, like I was.

  27. Project Inspired

    Posted by olive77 on June 9, 2014 at 18:34

    I don’t see anything wrong with wearing bikinis. As women we are often taught to cover ourselves for the sake of men. Men lust after girls fully covered without makeup. Boys should be taught not to lust versus girls just being shamed into covering their bodies. Personally, wearing a bikini does not make me feel immodest. I believe I act modestly in one, and beaches are extremely hot, making a bikini the most comfortable option. I do not see a thing wrong with them.

  28. Savvonikki

    Posted by Savvonikki on February 28, 2014 at 17:29

    I have grown up wearing bikinis, and up until now I have never questioned wearing them. Now that I am a teenager I am about to make the switch because bikinis cause a little bit too much staring from guys, and I would not want to provoke them by any means to lust after my body. I don’t have a problem wearing them but I have come to realize that they don’t leave much to the imagination, and its probably best as a teen girl not to wear them out in public.

  29. Meg15

    Posted by Meg15 on January 5, 2014 at 16:43

    I don’t think it’s right to wear a bikini. It causes our brothers in Christ to stumble. I wear a lot of tankinis and one pieces, even when all the rest of my friends don’t, for just that reason, and I’m proud of it! That’s the thing though, bikinis are becoming more and more popular and you have to really look for those few one pieces out there. And the ones I do find cut too low in front, or have pads in them to make you look bigger, even the smaller sizes that are meant for younger girls! There are more tankinis out there than one pieces, so I find myself buying more of those. It makes me sad because our culture nowadays is so focused on the outside appearance instead of what’s on the inside.

  30. 17maya

    Posted by 17maya on December 30, 2013 at 07:48

    Okay, I do not wear bikini’s because I believe that they totally show to much skin and they are so close to bra’s and Underwear. My question to you guys is would you go outside in your bra and underwear? Would you be embarrassed? I read this article from a magazine and thought it was so good I typed it up. If you want to know how what you wear affects others I think this would be an awesome place to find out. :D https://docs.google.com/a/forestcity.k12.ia.us/document/d/1FIUyhxZArH9f0mKP74VdJ8NCzQgnfAwH97znFr2IXbg/edit

    • Lauren3

      Posted by Lauren3 on April 11, 2014 at 18:07

      THANK YOU SO MUCH. That really helps clear up alot of things!

  31. Queen E

    Posted by Queen E on December 28, 2013 at 22:29

    I’m really not allowed to wear them, so out of respect for my mom, I don’t. However, I personally think that under the right circumstances, they are fine. If I’m going to a co-ed party say with my yearbook staffers, a co-ed group, then I would probably steer clear from one, even though the other girls would. Despite the fact that it is almost completely a sorority, there are still a few guys there, and I don’t want them to get the wrong image of me and my morals. If I’m going with a group of girls, then maybe. My mom wants me to wear a one suit, but personally, I think an attractive, pretty, reasonably modest tankini are more appropriate for my age (almost 15). However, in that group, my Revival Christian youth leaders (17 and 18) do wear bikinis and have been for at least a while. What do you think I should do? I’d love to get some honest feedback! In advance, thanks and God bless!

  32. iam_priceless

    Posted by iam_priceless on December 28, 2013 at 12:38

    I think bikinis are fine if you are wearing them with the right reason in mind. If you wear them to draw attention to yourself it is bad. If you are wearing them to draw attention I think it is perfectly acceptable.

  33. MissMorland

    Posted by MissMorland on December 27, 2013 at 10:07

    I think it’s funny how it would be completely unacceptable to walk around in your underwear, but take the same pattern and use spandex instead of cotton and it’s perfectly OK. I just get a bit of a double-standard impression…

  34. Sis206

    Posted by Sis206 on July 29, 2013 at 16:10

    I don’t like bikinis. I just think all of them are too immodest. Some people like them but I think they are not very modest. I like tankinis

  35. rosiegirl

    Posted by rosiegirl on July 20, 2013 at 13:37

    Ok. Bikinis technically aren’t allowed at my house. I don’t mind, for a while I was VERY uncomfortable with my body. I’ve been working though that. Next summer when I’m 18 I will wear one. A skirt and sports bra type top. But I don’t see anything wrong with showing your belly. I do have a problem with showing other parts of your body.

    • Queen E

      Posted by Queen E on December 28, 2013 at 22:31

      I agree. I’d rather be in a bikini, than tiny short-shorts, that are revealing my underwear. I’m 14, and I’m not allowed to wear a bikini, but I really don’t see a problem showing your stomach. I mean, there are far worse parts of your body to be shown, and showing your bare stomach is like showing your bare arms – at least in my opinion.

  36. Project Inspired

    Posted by Alexus on July 14, 2013 at 23:13

    I think as long as its not provocative, or tempting others its acceptable. It’s about the heart. Don’t wear anything that will provoke lustful, jealous or sinful behaviors in others or yourself. Wear stuff that proves you confident in God and the body he made you, not in self glorification.

  37. 2daniellehernandez

    Posted by 2daniellehernandez on July 14, 2013 at 16:52

    Awesome Godly view/study on Bikinis! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wtLYeyp8QU

  38. Project Inspired

    Posted by Mohammed 21 on June 28, 2013 at 12:01

    Beauty of environment is our ethics modest and our behavior the frank