Modesty in Marriage: How Much is Too Much? |

If you read my blog frequently, there is a good chance you are concerned about modesty. You see the deplorable lack of modesty that is in the world around us and you want to take a bold stand against it. The closet is purged, the mini skirts are thrown out, and you start teaching your daughters about being chaste, virtuous, and modest.

This attitude starts affecting your whole life. From the movies you watch, to your mannerisms, to the magazines you let in your home, modesty can really change your world, but not all of it can be for the better.

Without even realizing it, we can let this attitude slip into our marriage and our relationship with our husband. As married women, we have to remember to balance our desires to be modest during the day when we are present in the world, against the extreme opposite attitudes we can and should have at home with our husband.

When we are out shopping for groceries we are not trying to catch a man’s eye. Not only our clothing but our attitude should make it clear we are not loose women looking for a guy to flirt with.

Do we give that same impression to our husbands though? Are we buttoned up and posses a demure attitude towards him? Or do we throw caution to the wind and remember he is ours to love wholeheartedly?

I married my husband when I was 19 after a sweet courtship. Sean was my first and only boyfriend, and we shared our first kiss on our wedding day. I really didn’t know what kind of wife I would become, but my hope was to be a submissive, helpful, kind, and loving wife. Being a flirt with my husband wasn’t really on my list of qualities I wanted to strive for as a wife.

After 11 years of marriage, flirting with my husband is high on my list of things to work on in our marriage. I love being a totally different woman when I’m just around my husband, and he knows he is the only one that sees the flirtatious side of me. It strengthens our marriage and keeps us going during the difficult seasons.

It is much easier to be a flirtatious wife before the word “mom” is thrown into the mix. Modesty still has to prevail with lots of children around! Here are some ideas that might help overcome the sweet obstacle called children. 🙂

Don’t be afraid to kiss in front of your children! They need to see that their parents love each other. Almost everyday our children see us publicly display our affection in front of them!

Go ahead and throw away the flannel nightgown! There is definitely balance in all of this. If you have young children around then discretion still needs to be used. But a long flannel nightgown does not always have to be worn to be modest! There are cute two piece pajama sets that are modest enough for a mama to wear. Another idea is to have a long lighter weight robe on over your more revealing nightgowns. The children need never know. 🙂

Some good places I like finding cute nightwear 


Kohls (the clearance rack is awesome there!)




Notice Victoria Secret is not on the list? I know ladies who love to shop there for practical items, but if you don’t feel comfortable doing that there are many other options! 🙂

Take advantage of the moments alone with your husband! There are not always going to be these amazingly romantic moments. Some husbands just are not even very romantically inclined, though they love their wives with a true passion. Make the best of the rare moments alone. If you can get away once a year by yourself, or let the children spend the night with family, don’t clean the house while they are gone or spend your night on the computer! Create an amazing date night at home for your husband. This is the best time to be as flirty as you want! Dating Divas website is a great resource for ideas, you just have to pick and choose what you are comfortable with (I’m not comfortable with all the ideas, but some are fantastic).

Find one thing your husband loves about you and do it! We are wives but also busy mothers. Trying to look the part of June Cleaver isn’t possible. June Cleaver did not have a large family, she definitely didn’t homeschool, or live in the country, or have a family business. Let go of the pressure that you have to look all and be all and do all, but find one thing that your husband loves about you and keep that up! Whether it is your hairstyle, a certain color of clothes you wear, makeup on when he comes home, or simply a clean house, do that one thing consistently for him!

Remember how you treated him when you were courting/dating. Back when you were first getting to know your husband he was probably treated as if he was super special! You dressed up for him, were available whenever he wanted to take you out or call you on the phone. Everything was new and exciting. Don’t let those memories be forgotten! Recently we sat and shared memories of our courting days for a long time, reliving sweet times and precious events. Pull out your wedding video and watch it or look at your wedding pictures again. Remember your vows you made to each other, and that they were made before God and are sacred.




39 Comments on Modesty In Marriage: How Much Is Too Much?

  1. This is an area that is uncomfortable for me. I have always been a modest person so dancing around in a little outfit for my husband would be so uncomfortable for me! I have a good friend that can do these things kind of things easily and I am sure her husband loves it but for me, it would be very hard…

    • I am the same way more often than now as you, Lori. But mine stems from a terrible past involving sexual molestation and rape from toddlerhood. So I am naturally very very clammed up. Even around my husband. He doesn’t understand it at all. He would like me to relax even just a little. Work in Progress.

    • Lori – Dancing around in a little amount of clothing for your husband is totally okay and good, but it is not for everyone! There are other ways to flirt with your husband beside this :). So don’t feel inferior if you dont’ feel comfortable doing that! I don’t want to get too graphic here as this is the modest mom blog after all!! But you can flirt by just bending over in a suggestive manner with regular clothes on, or a little shoulder shimmy with your clothes on. My husband and I have a very healthy marriage and we’ve been married for 19 years. I would never feel comfortable dancing around in a nightly, and I grew up in a family that did not value modesty.. some of us are more naturally modest and just more serious natured than others and that is okay! I do very much enjoy flirting with my hubby in other ways, however. ;). and he is very receptive to my flirty ways 😉

  2. We, as wives, MUST flirt with our husbands. This includes the little nighties. Men are visually aroused. With warmer weather coming, there will be many females out there tempting our fellows to look at them. When a husband has his OWN flirtatious wife waiting for him, it is much easier for him to get through his day and resist the worldly temptations out there. Send him a suggestive text during the day! I’ll bet it will bring a big smile to his face and butterflies in his stomach! ps… I’ve been married almost 37 years and my hubby STILL loves the flirting. You have to keep the flames of love burning!

  3. I love this article! It took me a while to get to the modesty stage of my Christian walk. Once I got there though, it spilled over into the bedroom. It took my husband being very blunt with me to make me realize that God wants us to please God first(modesty in public), our husbands next(allowing him to love to be with us and see us in a different way), and then our children(teaching them to love their spouses). The book of Song of Solomon is a great place to start reading about how your relationship with your husband can be. Remember, the marriage bed is undefiled, yet private. Your husband will thank you!!

  4. Well said, Caroline! Like Katie said, it’s so easy to get in that mom mode and quickly forget that we are to be the wife of his youth (Biblically speaking). God bless!

  5. Caroline, this is a good thing to talk about. In my mind a married woman shouldn’t even own a modest nightgown. That’s what a bathrobe is for. It’s good for my kids, to see me a little bit sexy at home. There is a balance. I don’t run around in sheer lace and a thong, but my boys don’t think twice about seeing me in a cami and shorts at home–though I cover up when it’s time to go out shopping. This is a huge need for my husband, and it would have been easier to meet it, had it been a normal part of my understanding when I was preparing to be a wife.

  6. As a single young woman, I shall file this away for the future. I suspect that it will be much needed advice, since I’ve been taught modesty from a young age, and am used to being very discreet and modest around young men. I’ve always thought that it would be easy to change for my husband, but after reading this, maybe it doesn’t come as naturally as I thought. Thank you for the advice (and someday, I suspect my husband will thank you too). 😀

  7. I like Andrea am waiting for God to bring my hubby and I together but trying to learn all I can from all you Godly wives out there. I will be stowing away this jewel of advice away for the day of me being a wife and mom.

  8. Wonderful truth shared with much grace. My husband and I just got away for a few days. We listened to a talk by Gregg Harris, father of the “Do the Hard Things” young men. When talking about marriage, he encourage us that we were created to be sexual beings within the context of marriage, for our whole lives. It is a beautiful gift to enjoy with our husbands. The beauty of having an expressive love relationship with our husbands is that it creates a wonderful sense of security in our chilren.
    This is such a necessary talk in our current Christian culture. I see so many women being more and more revealing of the secrets of their beauty in public. Please keep your leggins covered with a longer skirt. There are some things that only your husband should see. I will thank you on behalf of my husband.

    • As my pastor says, men are visual and will see things. It’s the lingering look, or second look that is wrong. If your husband only does the lingering look or many second looks, he has a lust problem.

      I think the women who think ALL women should be modest for their husbands is ridiculous. We aren’t the problem it’s the men. Tell your husband to stop looking. Plain amd simple.

      And really, if the wife is fulfilling and sexual and keeping her husband happy. Not refusing, (that doemt just mean saying no to sex, but limiting the sex to certain times, limiting to certain acts, and only one position), will go a long way. If he’s happy at home, he won’t be looking elsewhere.

      • Danielle has a point. Yes, I believe all people should dress modestly, but in a world if higher dressing standards, some men will shift what they lust after. I was in an historical hobby where women were mostly covered and yet some of the men would adjust their lust to suit what they saw (and didn’t see). I’m not pointing fingers. I am merely.saying that we are responsible for ourselves. As a woman, I choose to dress more modestly. I appreciate when my husband chooses to not lust. (In the bedroom, though, wink wink!)

      • I disagree with you. A man will still linger else where if it’s in his heart. His wife can do everything right and he can still fall for the trap the devil puts out there for men. It is never the woman’s fault. The husband still has a duty to his wife and a choice. She can withhold sex for the entirety of their marriage but he still made a promise to her. She isn’t in the right to withhold all the time but there are times a husband needs to be understanding that his wife needs a break.

      • Danielle, I agree and disagree…Although it would be the man’s fault for lustful looks, it is also our responsibility as women to not “cause one of these to stumble” We are called by God to not be a stumbling block (if we are going to say that we are “loving” our brothers with God’s love.) This is serious and we should not deceive ourselves that we have no part to play in another person’s opportunity to stumble. I believe we should take up our own responsibility and let the men take up theirs. And help one another in the process.

  9. Such a good reminder to seek to please our husbands. We all know what our own husband likes too. I’m one to want to curl my hair and make it look extra nice, but my hubby likes it best all messy first thing in the morning! So it is often not what we think of as special, but whatever is special to our guy. 🙂 By the way, I got married at 19 after a sweet courtship too!

  10. Great post! My husband and I often tell married people that they MUST keep their marriage priority #2 (after their relationship with God). Not only does this keep they family strong, model a healthy marriage to your kids, and cause stronger parenting and family unity, it also ensures that you still love {and like} your spouse after the kids are gone. Thanks for the great content. 🙂

  11. After reading the comments from the younger ones, I thought I would share this experience. I was a very shy modest girl. My high school years were in the 70’s, (yes, I am over 50! LOL) and mini-skirts were the thing. Well, I was one of only 3 girls that had my knees covered with my dresses/skirts. When I was 20 yrs old and getting ready for my wedding, my mom took me shopping for my “honeymoon” things. I was very satisfied with the long nightgowns that I already owned and thought that is what we were going to buy. Well, my wise mother knew better. When she made the suggestions of what to buy, I told her “no way am I going to wear something that looks like that”. Goodness, there wasn’t much more than a 1/4 yd of fabric! She said “trust me on this one. You are going to WANT to have this.” Well, I am glad I followed her advice back there almost 37 years ago. So, gals, keep this in mind when you meet the one you will spend the rest of your life like. Think of your honeymoon as a time when you give your husband the best gift he could ever get, YOU! And keep it up the rest of your lives together. This IS modesty when you are with your husband!

  12. Thank you for the reminder. After almost 30 years of marriage, it’s important to be reminded that God (and our husbands) smile on the effort we put into the physical expressions of love with our husband. Well said.

  13. Being raised with certain rules of modesty, it really IS hard to make the switch to “wife mode” though important. My husband has gently asked me to wear “more alluring” clothes on occasion and I’m slowly learned what that means or looks like because I do not see myself as an “alluring” woman at all.

  14. By sanctioning the wearing of immodest clothing “in the bedroom”, at what point do we cross the line and end up encouraging lust within his own virtuous heart?

    • Men don’t naturally have a virtuous heart. We are all sinners and have to live in a fallen world. Not everyone has the same weaknesses. Some men are stronger than others in this area, but a man who is well satisfied by his wife in the bedroom will be able to resist the temptations of the flesh better. That is my experience after 20 years of marriage and a strong relationship with my husband.

      I agree with JoEllen.

    • Meg, in the marriage be I don’t think the word “immodest” applies. We need to be comfortable, but I also think anything goes as long as the husband and wife are happy with it!

  15. I recently discovered your blog and found this article spot-on. Unfortunately I also realize that I’m at the moment far from this. At present, it is not even a goal for me anymore, which I am sad about. I often have ambivalent feelings about being seductive and right now I lean towards “modest and mom-mode all the way”.

    Thank you for pointing out what can be improved.

  16. I never realized how “frumpy” my sleepwear had become until my husband flat-out told me he would like to see a little more skin once in a while! After 3 kids, none of my pre-baby lingerie fit so I knew some shopping was in order. It’s hard for me to find time to go shopping without the kids, and I wasn’t about to go shopping for a sexy négligée with my kids so we’ve found Amazon to be a lifesaver. It’s fun to sit in bed after the kids are asleep & let my hubby pick out what he’d like to see me in! And it’s a nice bit of anticipation while we wait for the packages to arrive! 😉

  17. Thank you for your good article…We can still be attractive and sexy to our husbands even with having kids. We can be a “Smoking Hot Mama!” I am doing the Passion Pursuit DVD series, and it really puts it all into perspective.

  18. I liked that you referenced Dating Divas as a source for ideas. I’d like to add another: The Marriage Bed. They have a website devoted to sexual relationships the way God intended, and among other things, have shopping links for online sites (like you, some I’m comfortable with, others not). What I like about the sites is that items are advertised without the help of live models. That way, if I’m not comfortable shopping in person or if I want my husband to pick something out, there’s no dilemma of having to look at someone else’s body!

  19. Great post! If we truly love our husbands then we only desire THAT kind of attention from him! I get offended if another man even tries to be flirtatious with me! I refuse to be giggly or overly friendly towards other men/my friend’s husbands. I am careful about what I wear out, but honestly if a woman has a pretty face that can attract unwanted attention ?

  20. Although I agree that we should be appealing to our husbands, I find it dangerous to try and please him using the worlds standards. God designed our bodies perfectly to please our husbands, no extras needed! When we try to impress him with lingerie are we not just copying the worldly model? Do we really want to dress as a Victoria’s Secret model? Is that what we want to define us as sexy to our husbands? I’d rather not copy the worlds view of attractiveness when trying to please my husbands visual desires. All my lingerie was thrown away years ago when I realized that my image of sexiness really just came from what the world was telling me was sexy. Now a simple birthday suit does the job just fine.

    • I have to disagree with you there for a minute. The world can only seep into your relationship if you let it, lingerie is not necessarily a worldly thing. I’m not comfortable buying things at Victoria’s Secret per say because- I don’t look like them and some of those things are just over the top. I have learned tho (inspired by the Proberbs 31 woman) to sew my own lingerie. Items that make me feel and look my best for my husbands eyes only. Just like you change your shoes, your hair or your make up- changing your “marriage fun outfits” are also a must. Men are visual creatures and we are emotional ones. He likes what he sees and I feel good to have him enjoy me. I’ve never danced or pranced around for him. Not yet anyways. I used to be a prude, and that was really just me dealing with my own issues. We often get confused about what we think God wants, what we wish God wanted, what we want and wish God agreed with and none of it could be right. I’d suggest fasting and prayer. Bring it to God, speak out all of your reasons and excuses, say all you have to say. Everything in your heart and mind and when you’re done- sit still and listen. The first 6yrs of my marriage we’re pretty lackluster in the bedroom department because I was raised hearing how sex is wrong, and pleasure is sinful so I had never reached that point and resented my husband. It wasn’t his fault though. I joined a bible study that changed my world. I am my husbands and he is mine and there’s nothing I should hold back from him. (Well almost nothing- exits are exits only lol) anyway the point is- let God be your guide, not your own understanding of what it should or shouldn’t be.

    • Interesting thoughts, Emily. Maybe there is a fine line. Maybe it depends in your husbands experiences. I, for one, think that using lingerie can help enhance my features as well as make me feel sexy which can be a good experience for my marriage 🙂

  21. Something else i thibk would be good for us to keep in mind is the single men and boys out there that don’t have a sweet and flirty, sexy wife to come home to. They simply have to be strong in the Lord without being able to divert those feelings toward their wife who is waiting for them at home…

  22. Yeah, I dressed pretty hot for my husband ,as he always wants me to look makeup around him and sometimes out ,while doing all of this for my husband just to make sure I’m being his eye candy , he’s off in the other room watching porn anyway when he thinks I’m not looking! so…

    • I’m so sorry Debbie. Dressing nicely for your husband sadly doesn’t guarantee your husband’s faithfulness, it has to be in his heart. :/

    • Debbie, I am so sorry you are having to go through this. Like Caroline said, it is a heart issue, and unfortunately this is something many many men struggle with. You can always confront him out of love and try to let him know how it makes you feel, and ask him what you can do to help him over come this addiction. I think as long as you realize this is a sin issue, just like all of us have, and you approach it in a way that shows you truly care and want to help, it may make it easier for him to want to change. I know a lot of people don’t want to talk about it, but maybe try getting council from a leader in your church. They maybe able to help you learn how to spiritually and emotionally handle this while still honoring your husband. Which is no easy task. I pray you are able to find the wisdom you need in order to over come this and I pray the Lord strengthens your marriage, and your husband realizes what a treasure he has in you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *