Skirts Not Pants: An Overview, An Invitation, & A Woman’s Story

Here are some additional ideas related to women voluntarily wearing skirts regularly:

FEMININE: Most women feel and act more feminine when wearing skirts. Skirt wearing can inspire a woman to wear feminine dress in general. It is widely accepted for women to wear skirts to work and so forth, so why not take advantage of this while it’s still a cultural norm to say ‘yes, this is what we want, this is who we are.’

MODESTY: PANTS V SKIRTS: Skirts are typically more modest than today’s popular tight-fitting pants which show curvatures of the body.

MODESTY: SKIRT LENGTH: Longer skirts are even modest for work activities. Skirts which only go to the knees typically become immodest when any movement occurs such as sitting, so try to use longer skirts. Women who insist on having their skirts up to the knees frequently must try and cover their garments, and their garments often show, nonetheless. Remember garments of past generations went to the ankle. Remember temple dresses go to the ankle.

MODESTY: SKIRT TIGHTNESS: A good standard is to be able to sit on the floor Indian style without having an issue. Slits in skirts (often immodest) aren’t needed for free-flowing skirts (and when there is a slit, it can be sown down past the knee).

NOT BY RESTRAINT: Pay attention to feelings of discomfort which can come when you are wearing less than ideal clothing. Though there are general standards of dress from the Church, the spirit can guide someone to bring their dress to higher holier ways. Many women make it clear that no one will tell them how to dress, not even their husbands. True, at the end of the day, women must make their own decision on this matter. If their husbands prefer it, I encourage them to strongly consider it. If they feel the Lord wishes it for them, I most strongly encourage them to consider it. Marriage is a delicate thing, but couples can talk to each other about what the spirit is prompting them to do to lead their family and make these matters an ongoing consideration. Perhaps introduce the idea in a polite way (invitation), and see what happens by and by. We are aware of groups which had extremely rigid dress codes which were enforced with threat of excommunication or exile, and we don’t need to go there.

COLD: Leggings can be worn to help with heat. Tall boots or tall (even wool) socks could help too. With longer skirts, folks wouldn’t really see them anyway.

COMFORT: Women typically report skirts as more comfortable than pants. If tennis shoes look odd with skirts, try some comfortable dressy shoes such as the missionary sisters wear (they do plenty of walking).

DURABILITY: Skirt wearers report work on the knees in a long skirt actually doesn’t wear out like knees on jeans as one isn’t kneeling on the same part of the cloth every time. Denim skirts can be used. Separate skirts can be used for best-dress than for dirty chores. If you’re concerned about wearing out skirts, there’s plenty more at thrift stores; you can build up a handful of these without breaking the bank just like how you built up a handful of pants without breaking the bank.

OCCATIONAL: Perhaps you would like to use pants for various occasions where you feel that would be very beneficial, but consider wearing skirts more often than just to church and formal occasions. Consider making skirts the norm, and pants the exception.

MEN? Someday, I think, men too will wear more flowing type clothes, similar to dress in the east. Jesus of course wore flowing clothes. Others wore kilts. I’m not sure what you would call it. But only in recent times has it become a social norm for people to wear entirely form fitting clothing. In many western cultures, men aren’t allowed to wear anything but pants to work, so we wouldn’t want to jeopardize employment on this issue. Scriptures refer to men’s skirts (such as 1 Sam. 24:4).

ALTERNATIVES: If you can’t bring yourself to wear skirts, try finding other ways to increase your modesty which work for you. One popular approach is to wear shirts which go down to the thighs so as to better cover the more sensitive areas of the body.

Charlotte’s Experience


Here are some thoughts from a friend of mine, Charlotte Erickson (shared with permission), who now wears dresses/skirts everyday:

I sometimes feel overdressed for the occasion (although everyone around me is used to by now so that’s not really an issue anymore)
My legs get cold in the winter (although I just got some leggings that should help this winter)
Most skirts don’t have pockets (although if I knew how to sew I could alter them)
It looks funny with sneakers (but I still wear sneakers anyway)

It pleases my husband
It sets a good example of femininity for my daughter
It’s cooler in the summer
I got to give all my jeans to my SIL and she was thrilled
Since I started wearing only skirts, I have been told that I look good and someone even asked me if I lost weight. However, I am exactly the same size as when I got married; I think skirts can be more flattering than pants.

By no means do I think every woman should wear only skirts. In fact, I miss pants. But for me it was the right thing to do. My husband is a very traditional guy and likes to be masculine and likes his woman to be feminine (hence my long hair that I will never cut short). Not all husbands care. Being feminine is also very important to my 3-year-old daughter and that might be a factor in the Spirit whispering to me to be more feminine.

When I started wearing only skirts, I only owned one, so when my sister and mom asked me what I wanted for my birthday, I told them, “Skirts!” They took me to the thrift store and bought me 3 more.

Two years ago I never would have believed that I’d end up in skirts full-time. I wore jeans all the time and sometimes even changed into pants after coming home from church on Sunday.

I wear flowing, ankle-length skirts. It is easy to stay modest and I have plenty of range of motion. I kneel in them. I garden in them. I scrub the floor in them. I scrub toilets in them. If you’re used to wearing skirts to formal events, it might be hard to imagine working in skirts. It might help to think of what the Mormon pioneer women did. They pulled handcarts, milked cows, built houses, etc., all in skirts.

Some women might have work skirts separate from their church skirts so they won’t be afraid to get dirty. I have a denim skirt that is my work skirt that I wore when we went camping and I would wear if I was doing something particularly dirty. But for now I just live life the same as always, only I wear skirts instead. When my skirts wear out, I’ll get more. I’m not all prissy and afraid to get dirty just because I wear skirts.

Actually, as a side note, when I wore jeans, I tended to wear out the knees of the jeans very quickly because of all the kneeling I would do. Since I wear skirts, when I kneel, I don’t kneel on the exact same spot every time and I haven’t had a skirt wear out yet.

Even if a woman decides to wear skirts more often, that doesn’t mean she can’t wear pants when cleaning or exercising or gardening or whatever other activity she prefers to wear skirts in. And she could even ease into the habit by just wearing a skirt one extra day a week when she wants to work extra hard to please her man.

I used to wear pants during the day and change into a skirt right before my husband came home from work. That got to be a hassle, and something told me that my children might think I was guilty of hiding a wrongdoing. I didn’t want to appear to be deceitful, so I started wearing skirts full-time.

If your husband would prefer long hair but you can’t make it work, would it be an improvement in his eyes for you to wear flowers or ribbons in your hair? To my husband the femininity is what’s important;, if I was making an effort to be more feminine he would appreciate it, even if refused to wear skirts or grow out my hair. Know what I mean?

When the word “skirt” comes up in the scriptures it’s often talking about a man’s skirt (such as 1 Sam 24:4: “Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul’s robe privily.”). Whether a skirt is considered feminine certainly depends on your culture!

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