A Specific Question Pertaining to Male Modesty


I found a pair of shorts in the back of my closet that I didn’t realize I owned. I tried them on and while they fit they are a little smaller than those that I normally wear.

I realize that, though obviously the rules are not as strict for men as then are for women since women are not as “visual” as men, men are called to dress modestly too, so I did some research and found that men aren’t supposed to wear shorts that are “too short or too tight.”

That’s pretty vague.

What exactly is “too short” or “too tight?” What are the general guidelines men should follow when wearing shorts or, since half of these guidelines would also apply to pants, pants?


Well, if someone can tell whether or not you’re circumcised, the shorts are too tight. On the other hand, many “shorts” today seem to go somewhere between the knees and the ankles, and they sure don’t have to be that long in order to be modest.


Your joking us of course, you don’t know when a pair of shorts are to tight and everything bulges and to short by showing more than it should, can you not see that or have you no mirror at home to view yourself, or need a new pair of glasses, but I think you must be joking or something.







I can’t imagine a man wanting to wear short right shorts !!

Ouch !


Leave enought room so that nothing is snug against the skin, especially in the crotch. And at the least, they need to reach mid-thigh, although to the knee is better.


Let me put it another way…
I work at a Christian charity thrift shop that relies on donations.
“Are these womens’ or mens’ shorts,” asked by one re: several pairs that came in.
"Mens’ "

Six pairs of shorts, the leggings of which were in direct line to the male anatomy.
EWWWWWWWWW!!! was the response as they were tossed out.

Tha’t s just too bleepin’ short, people!!!


Instead of focusing on inches or tightness, try focusing on the actual virtue of modesty. When I dress, although I’m female, I ask myself a few questions: “Would I be offended walking into a room of people dressed like this?” “Would I attend a church function in this?” And most importantly, “If Our Lady was around today, would she wear this?” (Difficult to picture her at the local supermarket in robes and mantilla.)

So try them on and then ask yourself some questions that get at the heart of the virtue of modesty, which is, in essence, a sense of whole mess and dignity of the human person. Would St. Joseph wear them in his 2014 carpenter shop?

Hope this helps!


I nearly brought up my Dinner with the laughing when I read this reply, mind you Jewish guys don’t go around with this “sign” showing either,

One knows when an item is modest or not modest unless that is they are going around with a white stick.


OK, the thing is, there aren’t literal “modesty rules”. You want to avoid anything that will draw unnecessary attention, which is pretty subjective. We all have different opinions about what constitutes modest clothing, and apart from some extremes to either side, most of those opinions are in line with Church teaching. We’re allowed to draw our personal lines in different places, since we all live in somewhat different circumstances. We’re also allowed to have different lines for different situations- what’s comparatively modest at the beach probably isn’t so modest at church, for example.

We can give you guidelines if you don’t trust your own judgement, but you should understand that any given set of modesty guidelines is generally nothing more than one person’s opinion. :shrug:

Anyway, I guess my advice to others would be pretty similar to what zz912 said. I’m not a fan of super-complicated modesty advice. For myself, I just have a personal vendetta against shorts of any kind. :stuck_out_tongue:


Remember that not only women look at men. If a gay man were looking at you while you were wearing the shorts, would it make you uncomfortable? That seems like a good guide to me.



It is actually physically unhealthy for men to wear something too tight. No tight shorts, no tight jeans. Men should wear boxers or at the most boxer/ briefs.

If your pecs or showing… if ANYTHING is even slightly showing, then you’ll look like you stepped out of the 1970s. :frighten:


Actually, wearing boxers, for men, is the most likely thing to make their pants immodest. If you wear sweatpants and boxers, for example, you could (depending on, errr, other details about your anatomy) be dressed very immodestly.


If men are that visual, then they should also have “modesty rules” that are just as strict, since we know not all men are attracted to women- some are attracted to other men and you don’t want to be responsible for causing them to stumble, now do you?


As a man who is attracted to other men, I thank you for making this point.


I would imagine the struggle most men have with this is quite difficult. For some reason, when modesty comes up, people tend to forget men with SSA, instead focusing solely (and throwing blame) on what women wear.


As a man, to dress modestly while going swimming I wear a short sleeved rash guard and shorts that go down to just above the knees (going down to the knees or past impedes swimming for me and so is a safety risk).

I will never understand the mentality of people who dress immodestly because they don’t care about the possibility of other people falling into lust thanks to their revealing clothing, and just insist it’s their problem, I need to dress to impress and be in style!


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