With fashion being cyclical by nature, it is inevitable for most rejected or obsolete trends to make their way back into the cycle at some point. This is true modest fashion. From grunge-inspired outfits to workwear to layered designer looks, modest fashion is broadening thanks to social media. Luckily, the resurgence of the trend is about fashion and style than it is about infringing women’s autonomy.


While the look and feel of modest fashion can vary from person to person, it generally refers to wearing less revealing clothing – think higher necklines, long-sleeve shirts, looser cuts and free-flowing silhouettes.


Beauty and lifestyle digital creator, Landzy Gama in a loose fitted marching set


Gen Z and millennial content creators are putting a modern twist to the trend, often leaning away from more traditional wear, such as abayas and kaftans, and experimenting with fashion and layering in a way that gives a contemporary spin on modest dressing. High necklines, low hemlines – these quintessential modest fashion aesthetics are no longer the headline-making phrases they once were. Since modesty’s buzzy foray in fashion five years ago, the retail category has not only been widely accepted and embraced, it has also evolved tremendously.


Moreover, Hijabi models are no longer novelties, and modest fashion is no longer limited to annual Ramadan capsules – or to Muslim consumers, for that matter. Therefore fashion aggregators and marketplaces are popping up across the globe. Furthermore, modest dressing is not always rooted in religious choice — many people choose to dress modestly for other reasons, ranging from personal aesthetic considerations to work requirements.


Hijab model Halima Aden adorned in modest khaki and gold outfit


While modest clothing rules call for looser, more relaxed fits, this doesn’t mean you should go for baggy, unflattering pieces! Opt for relaxed fits that still flatter at every angle, like pieces with gathered waists or matching sash belts or tie front to emphasise your waist.


Go with chiffon and cotton, or a flowy long-sleeve midi dress. A nice, floral, or vibrantly coloured maxi dress with dazzling prints and designs also works like a charm—they don’t even need to be layered up or covered as they’re already fresh and fab on their own!


Media personality K Naomi in a flowy midi dresses with vibrant prints


Midi and maxi skirts are perfect if you’re aiming to find a piece of clothing that is not only modest but also fashionable: they are now not only a spring-summer trend but a perfect fall-winter item too. There are many options for how to style a maxi skirt. Choose them glittery and in metallic colours for parties or special evenings, or go for these basic colours carefully styled.


Award-winning songstress, Solange in a shimmery brown pleated maxi skirt


Just like maxi skirts, maxi dresses are a valuable option for everyone looking for a fashionable modest look. They cover everything, hence perfect for winter, and they can be found in almost every colour and pattern. You just need to do a quick search to find plenty of options and discover the one that’s just perfect for you.


Fashion and lifestyle digital creator, Lerato Kgamanyane in a white maxi dress with puffed sleeves


For denim jeans, you can choose straight, boot cut, or even skinny jeans as long as you grab a loose-fitting, blousy, boho top to go with them. They’re great for comfort and versatility, and perfect for wearing leggings modestly too!


Actress Yara Shahidi in a baggy pair of jeans with stripe detail


Examples of modest clothing also include long-sleeved bodysuits or long-sleeve tops which are versatile. Moreover, longer hemlines also ensure that you’re still dressing modestly and stylishly even if you have an unexpected client meeting or business matter you suddenly need to attend to in the middle of your busy day.

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