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Beauty & Fashion

Modesty Guide to Summer Fashion

My husband works in retail. He told me the other day that he knows it’s close to summer because of the outfits he sees around the mall. And what he sees is shocking to him: young girls in short shorts and teeny, tiny crop tops.

“They’re trying to be naked without actually being naked,” he said, his brow creased with genuine concern. I’m pretty sure it’s because we have a 4-year-old daughter that he’s becoming more and more aware of “sexy” fashion. Any girl or woman would find it difficult to turn a blind eye to such exposure, let alone any boy or man.

Ladies, if the heat’s getting to you, there’s a way you can can feel and look cool this summer without compromising your modesty or sending the wrong message.

Obviously, when it comes to summer tops, the casual tee is always a good call, as long as it’s not too tight and covers the waist. My selections go a little further, adding some fun tops that will keep you cool and modest.


Images credit: Forever 21

As a fan of denim, bermudas and cargos, I selected the following for shorts. When it comes to length, I would suggest not going any shorter than the denim cut-offs shown below.

Images credit: Old Navy

Call me old fashioned, but I love long white and cream vintage summer dresses. I think they look great on almost any girl–they’re so pretty and feminine. And they’re light and airy, so they’re perfect to wear on a warm summer evening.

Images credit: Urban Outfitters

Remember that modesty is often dependent on body type. For example, if you have a large bust, a spaghetti strap top or dress may look immodest on you. So try on items first and see how they fit you before wearing them out.

When shopping for summer outfits, remember that you don’t have to strip to nothing to cool off. Just opt for clothing that is lightweight and non-restricting. Refrain from layering and pair your outfits with open shoes.

Never compromise your modesty for fashion or the desire to impress. And don’t feel the need to follow what the other girls are doing in an attempt to fit in.

Take the lead. Show others how you can look cool and cute without showing too much skin. Your desire to glorify God should be your guide.

There are a lot of cute items of summer clothing on the market–I hope you like my selections!

PI ladies, have you noticed outfits getting skimpier this summer season? Do you find yourself following fashion for fear of not fitting in? Share your story.

Image: Thinkstock | istockphoto

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54 Comments

  1. Leftie

    Posted by Leftie on January 17, 2017 at 17:38

    Those 8″ heels though.

  2. freedomlights

    Posted by freedomlights on January 26, 2014 at 18:38

    This is a great article! I’ve found some of the cutest light-weight clothing that keeps me cool, but also is modest. I know we’re all worried about tan lines, too, but there are perfectly-modest (and still cute) spaghetti-straps out there. I’ve also found super cute crop-tops I wouldn’t want to wear just as is, but if you put a tank-top underneath, you can still wear the cute clothes, but you can also cover up.

    The whole “everyone notices” thing is so true, though. If I’m walking around and I see some girl strutting around town wearing next-to-nothing, I notice. If her boobs are falling out of her shirt, I instinctively look because that’s the first thing I see. It’s not that I like it (trust me, I definitely do NOT like it at all)––it’s just that it’s there and very noticeable.

  3. Project Inspired

    Posted by Godgirl759 on July 2, 2013 at 10:02

    This is some good advice for everyone who wants to keep cool and stay modest this summer!!! 🙂

  4. Project Inspired

    Posted by kookyone on June 6, 2013 at 21:57

    i love crop tops but wear a tank under

  5. Project Inspired

    Posted by bsutcliffe99 on June 6, 2013 at 19:46

    all of the outfits are adorale

  6. kateinwonderland99

    Posted by kateinwonderland99 on May 21, 2013 at 06:50

    i dont like the shorts i struggle with them because i feel like they dont go easily with outfits. Maybe im wrong but i struggle making outfits with those shorts

  7. Project Inspired

    Posted by rynn1995 on May 18, 2013 at 08:03

    I’m just barely 5’4″ and weigh 120 pounds. The funny thing is, my legs are so long that if I was normally proportioned, I would be two or three inches taller. This fact comes in handy in track or swimming or hiking, but really stinks when I’m trying to find dresses that aren’t too big on top, but are a modest length, or trying to find shorts. I’ve just given up, and wear boys camo cargo shorts. They just seem to fit better.
    Does anyone else have this problem? If you do, any advice?

  8. hallex0x0

    Posted by hallex0x0 on April 9, 2013 at 13:23

    Nice and helpful! I’m posting this in 2013 but I need summer articles because Summer is coming quick! 🙂

  9. Project Inspired

    Posted by 333loves on July 29, 2012 at 00:42

    I’m going to stick to my style

  10. Project Inspired

    Posted by TheMouseLover on June 30, 2012 at 16:22

    I have that first gray tanktop with the lace around the shoulders! Except minr has little tiny gry aleeves that come down just past my should and are slit down the middle! I think its soooo cute! And the lace adds a bit of flair and makes it more modest!!

  11. Project Inspired

    Posted by Angelsgirl4 on June 18, 2012 at 09:51

    I totally agree! the only time I wear a crop top is when I go 2 the beach as a sort of cover up 🙂

  12. Project Inspired

    Posted by mal37312 on June 17, 2012 at 12:37

    Totally agree! Love this

  13. Project Inspired

    Posted by october99 on June 15, 2012 at 15:09

    Those tops are soo cute! Love it!

  14. Project Inspired

    Posted by Attie the Jesus Freak on June 14, 2012 at 09:28

    Well, when we’re just hanging out at home I wear kinda short shorts, but I cover up in public. Thanks for the tips!

  15. thespiritualwarrior7

    Posted by thespiritualwarrior7 on June 14, 2012 at 07:22

    Thank you. I think every Christian (and non-Christian) girl in the world should know about this site and the helpful, wholesom articles on it. Amazing!
    -cute tops, too!

  16. Project Inspired

    Posted by sunnylass on June 13, 2012 at 05:38

    i lovvve the clothing choices!! i would soo wear them!!1

  17. R God is G8r

    Posted by R God is G8r on June 8, 2012 at 18:48

    what about swimsuits?

  18. Project Inspired

    Posted by Brea on June 5, 2012 at 11:42

    WOW THESE ARE GREAT CLOTHES TO WEAR FOR THE SUMMER THANKS FOR THE TIPS

  19. Project Inspired

    Posted by Footprints on June 4, 2012 at 10:18

    Love the all of the ideas!!!

  20. jazminekvitko

    Posted by jazminekvitko on June 3, 2012 at 12:40

    Love the dresses! Thanks so much. The girls at my school should read this.

  21. Project Inspired

    Posted by Ishyn on June 2, 2012 at 23:02

    Does fashion=pretty? cuz i definitely think short shorts aren’t pretty…

  22. Emi

    Posted by Emi on June 2, 2012 at 17:43

    I’ve always never liked the short shorts or spaghetti strap tank tops. Anything that is revealing, I don’t wear, because it’s not me and it’s not comfortable. Love the dresses,shorts, and tanks you picked out, by the way! =)

  23. LizardlovesCSINY

    Posted by LizardlovesCSINY on June 1, 2012 at 16:58

    What’s the point of dressing so immodestly? I was told once that boys don’t actually like it when girls do that, that they actually feel sorry for them. Either way, how insecure do you have to be to wear absolutely nothing to get a boy’s attention? It’ll get their attention, that’s for sure… but, more than likely, not in a good way.

  24. Project Inspired

    Posted by Psalm84-6 on June 1, 2012 at 13:38

    Thank you for this I wish all of Gods girls could see it!

  25. Project Inspired

    Posted by BeStillAndBreath98 on June 1, 2012 at 10:59

    Love it all!!!

  26. Project Inspired

    Posted by Christ4life on June 1, 2012 at 05:46

    agreed! how do you feel about bikinis? i honestly think most bikinis are immodest but i also saw some bikinis that were more coverage and i also saw some vintage bikinis that look more modest, what is cuter a one piece or two piece because one pieces can feel a bit sticky..

    • Mandi Pi

      Posted by Mandi Pi on June 8, 2013 at 18:07

      Christ4life, i honestly don’t think there are modest bikinis…like i said above, even if it covers your chest and waist and stuff, bikinis still show ALL your stomach and ALL your back, so you’re basically showing off your whole body (and it’s better to be overly modest/cautious than make our brothers in Christ stumble!)

    • applebypie123

      Posted by applebypie123 on June 7, 2012 at 16:05

      hey! I agree about the modest bikins! they exist in my opinion! check out my reply to jennabel above

  27. Paris

    Posted by Paris on May 31, 2012 at 22:17

    I love the shirts and pants!

  28. Project Inspired

    Posted by StellarK on May 31, 2012 at 19:16

    I love the first top! It’s so cute. Yes, fashion has been getting horrendous lately! It’s why I normally opt for denim capris and a T-shirt most of the time. Thank you for the tips, they’re great!

  29. violinist4Him

    Posted by violinist4Him on May 31, 2012 at 18:56

    I have never comprimised my modesty to fit in, because I am VERY uncomfortable showing very much skin. even my mom thinks I’m overly modest. but I still wear really cute clothes 😀

  30. Project Inspired

    Posted by hannahbug on May 31, 2012 at 16:50

    These are really cute outfits! I think that it’s also important to remember to wear the right “undergarments” during the summer. When wearing shirts/dresses with skinny straps it’s easy to expose bra straps, which isn’t attractive and looks really tacky.

  31. Project Inspired

    Posted by Kathrie on May 31, 2012 at 16:17

    Can you make an article for girls with large busts? I never know what to do….

  32. Exlon

    Posted by Exlon on May 31, 2012 at 15:07

    I want those shorts. XD I have SUCH a hard time finding ones that aren’t short-shorts, so it’s nice to know I can look at Old Navy.

  33. Project Inspired

    Posted by JennaBel on May 31, 2012 at 14:53

    These are all great suggestions!! I’m VERY self consious when dressing myself, I feel like I can never be too modest. I feel I’m showing too much skin when I’m barely showing anything.

    One thing that wasn’t mentioned that I see in summer is bikinis. They are completely immodest. My sister wears them, and I tell her not to because it’s immodest, but she doesn’t listen to me. She says she wears “modest” bikinis. To be forward, and in my own opinion, I don’t think there is such a thing. Bikinis usually cover what’s barely necessary for not counting as public nudity. I ALWAYS wear tankinis. I feel I’m showing way too much without one, and sometimes still feel like I’m showing too much with one. I also wear sort of boy-short bottoms in order to avoid complete binkini bottoms.

    I would also like to hear opinions. What do you guys think about bikinis?

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by Karyn14 on June 12, 2013 at 12:32

      I agree with you. I feel like bikinis are way too immodest. That’s not to condemn people who wear them; I think many people have been told by society or even their parents that bikinis are okay. There’s a ton of pressure on girls to look just right all the time. I personally stick to a tankini with boyshort bottoms; there are plenty of really cute ones:) I don’t think I would feel comfortable wearing a bikini, especially if their were guys around.

    • Mandi Pi

      Posted by Mandi Pi on June 8, 2013 at 18:03

      JennaBel, sorry i dunno if you’ll see this i’m just now finding this post…but THANK YOU, because i agree there is NO such thing as a “modest bikini”…it really shows ALL your stomach and ALL your back even if it covers your chest, so you’re basically showing off your whole body!! i’m glad you dress overly modest (because it’s much better to be overly modest than just immodest enough to make our brothers in Christ stumble!). 😀

      • Mandi Pi

        Posted by Mandi Pi on June 8, 2013 at 19:13

        LOL i seriously just noticed this post is from 2012!!!! hahaha whoops…..dont think anyone is still checking it then. 😀

    • applebypie123

      Posted by applebypie123 on June 7, 2012 at 16:04

      I, personally, do believe there are modest bikinis. I wear bikins, partly because I can never find tankinis I like, and the bikinis I do wear have to pass some “regulations” before my mom will buy them or let me buy them.
      my bathing suit bottom must cover my hip bones (preferably halfway between hip and belly button)
      cannot tie on the sides
      cannot be revealing in the back no “cheeky” cuts
      and the tops must have appropriate support.
      I am careful to be modest in the way I dress and I wear bikins, although, if i found a tankin I liked I would wear it in a heart beat

      • Mandi Pi

        Posted by Mandi Pi on June 8, 2013 at 18:12

        applebypie123, i’m glad that you don’t wear REALLY immodest bikinis and that you show as little as possible, but like i said (it’s right next to this comment probably), i don’t think bikinis are modest even when you cover all your chest and waist. :/

    • tmgaouette

      Posted by tmgaouette on June 1, 2012 at 09:16

      Hey JennaBel, thanks for your question. I actually did do a post on swimwear recently. Check it out! I hope it helps. http://www.projectinspired.com/style-guide-for-christian-girls-swimwear/

      • Mandi Pi

        Posted by Mandi Pi on June 8, 2013 at 18:08

        by the way, thanks for always reading our comments and posting helpful articles tmgaouette! 😀

  34. brennaeskyler2

    Posted by brennaeskyler2 on May 31, 2012 at 13:47

    Yes, I get a magazine called Teen Vogue. And it says really short shorts are in! I don’t like that at all! Having things shorter and shorter, is not always “sexy”. There are some things in fashion I follow but not all the revealing clothing. It’s just so wrong!!

    • YoucatMarie

      Posted by YoucatMarie on June 9, 2012 at 12:20

      Yeah, I don’t do short-shorts anymore. After an incident with an old man looking at me in a weird way and me not paying any attention (don’t ask me for any specifics), I just don’t like that kind of attention anymore.

  35. Project Inspired

    Posted by poochker on May 31, 2012 at 12:55

    I like those tops and dresses. I like maxi and high-low dresses, because they cover what they should.

  36. emily.kate

    Posted by emily.kate on May 31, 2012 at 08:46

    i love those tops:)

  37. loveaubrey

    Posted by loveaubrey on May 31, 2012 at 05:08

    SO cute! Thanks a bunch!