For years, the concept of modest fashion has always had tight links to Islamic fashion. However, we’re starting to see a shift in recent years. Modest fashion has entered the mainstream and has become more inclusive as a result.
Maybe you’ve seen some evidence of this in major high street stores. In addition to all of the clothes you’d expect in these stores, you’re seeing more things like Maxi Dresses and similar garments. Perhaps you’ve even seen an Abaya or two.
Even moving away from traditional Islamic clothing, we’re seeing a definite trend towards modesty in women’s fashion.
Wide leg trousers and long dresses are both in right now, for example.
We’re curious to find out why this shift towards modesty in mainstream fashion’s taking place.
Women Are Dressing for Themselves
In an article published on the BBC website, modest fashion blogger Asha Mohamud has an interesting opinion on why modest fashion has hit the mainstream.
“Modest fashion is becoming more inclusive,” she says. “I feel like women are now dressing not to be sexy for men - but to feel sexy for themselves. Maybe that's no longer a push-up bra - instead it's a two-piece suit.”
It’s an interesting concept. We’re not sure we fully agree with the idea that women’s fashion is geared towards dressing to impress men.
However, the idea that underpins this is that women are now much more comfortable with the idea of dressing in what suits them. Perhaps there’s a shift away from dressing towards cultural norms taking place in the west. Some women may reject the “traditional” western fashions in favour of something that offers them comfort and higher levels of confidence.
Of course, style is still key here.
A modest garment that isn’t stylish at the same time isn’t going to attract much attention.
However, we’re also seeing more mainstream designers turning their attention to modest fashion. And because of that, we’re also seeing a lot of variety turning up.
Today, modest fashion isn’t about traditional Islamic or Japanese dress. It’s practically a movement that’s gaining support with each passing month.
Social Media’s Playing a Part
Another fashion blogger, Jodie Marriott-Baker, discusses how social media has played a role in the popularisation of modest fashion.
“It's no longer seen as a trend that older people wear. Fashion influencers on Instagram have made it look more wearable and accessible for everyone.”
Again, this comes back to the style idea. Influential people in the fashion world have embraced modest ideas in their own ensembles. They’re showing that the concept of “modest” isn’t something that you can pigeonhole into a single category.
It’s not necessarily about the specific clothes you wear.
For example, most would agree that a mini-skirt isn’t a modest item of clothing on its own. However, when combined with leggings or a pair of trousers, you create a modest ensemble.
Perhaps it’s this acceptance of the variety that lives within the concept of modesty that’s also playing a role in the rise of the movement. Thanks to various influencers, people can see just how versatile you can be in your choices while still remaining modest.
We believe that’s leading to more people experimenting with modest fashion who may not have considered it before.
The Final Word
It’s this idea that modest fashion is now a concept rather than a defined set of norms that’s really important, in our opinion.
More people are seeing just how far the idea of modest fashion can stretch. People are not creating ensembles with modesty in mind, even if they’re not wearing traditional modest clothes.
Better yet, a lot of the clothes used in these modest examples are wearable during all seasons. That extra versatility certainly makes modesty an attractive prospect to anyone who’s sticking to a budget.
At Anaya, we’re obviously huge proponents of the shift towards modest fashion in the mainstream. And we also offer a wide range of products, both traditional and non-traditional, for the modern modest dresser.
You may just find the next outfit that you’ll add to your wardrobe.