Ladies and gentlemen- modesty goes both ways. It is not just for the ladies. We’ve previously written about universal rules of modesty for women. That got us thinking- what about men? Are there general, universal rules to modesty (in terms of appearance) for men? The answer is YES!
Granted, it’s all relative. Interpretations of what is considered to be modest varies between different cultures, religions, and of course individuals. As we did our reading, we came across lots of parallels between different religious sects in terms of how men are expected to upkeep their appearance. And of course, we decided to share them with you!
The rules of modesty for men narrow down to two categories: physical appearance, and clothing/behavior. Yes, clothing is paired with behavior, because as we’ve previously written, there is a direct correlation between the two.
Men are generally expected to keep their hair short. Although the accepted length varies between religions and cultures, they’re generally expected to keep the hair on their head shorter than women. The modern trends of men shaving themselves smooth for the sake of vanity is generally frowned upon. In most instances, it’s a different story if it’s solely for hygienic reasons around particular parts of the body. It’s generally acceptable for men to maintain a smooth face, or keep facial hair- but the bottom line is whichever route they choose, they have to keep themselves nicely groomed.
Men are also expected to look after their health and fitness across the board. But how much is too much? Well, it’s okay for a man to exercise to be fit and gain some muscle. However, reactions get mixed when a man goes after obtaining an excessively muscular appearance- because again- that taps into vanity.
Things get interesting when it comes to jewelry and other accessories. There are mixed opinions on men wearing earrings and/or excessive jewelry such as gold chains. In most cases, it’s okay for a married man to wear a wedding band, and there are also cases where it would only be okay if the material isn’t made out of gold, because gold is considered too flashy. It is unanimously accepted for men to wear watches, but only if it isn’t heavily adorned. The same applies with religious symbols- he can wear it, just as long as the piece itself is very subtle.
Clothing and Behavior
Because men, in most cultures, play a more authoritative role in society, it is generally expected that they dress modestly to be taken seriously. You just wouldn’t expect an authoritative person to approach their role in clothing that is tight, revealing, or flashy. Elder men are expected to inspire and set an example of modesty for younger men, as well as women and children. This assists in encouragement of modest behavior as well.
Men are expected to speak and act in ways that clearly demonstrate righteousness. Yes, popular culture does make that difficult for younger men of today, which makes it that much more important for those that are close to them to motivate them to get on, and stay on the modest track.
Are their some other general rules of modesty for men that you know of? Let us know in the comments below!