Hey Girls! 31 Things Guys Wish You Knew about Style
Last week I wrote a piece about things girls wish guys knew about style, so in the interest of equality (and my own curiosity) this week is all about what the guys wish you girls knew about style.
First off, let me say the response by the guys kind of blew me away. From keen insights into women, to good observations and tips, the guys really came through on this one. My pre-conceived notion about girls caring more about style has been obliterated and it's easy to see why so many men rock the designer and style world. Secondly, this is intimidating to write, not having a male perspective personally. With all the great material the guys sent me though, I'm hoping to give all of us a clear and fair assesement of the things guys wish girls knew about style.
WHAT GUYS WISH GIRLS KNEW
It was refreshing to find the feedback was less about modesty, and more about what guys find attractive and respectful. No one was harsh, even those who had strong opinions on yoga pants or dresses, and in general the heart of what I saw coming through was that most guys want girls to be free to wear what they wish to wear, and to feel good about it when they do. It makes me think it's time we girls let our assumptions rest a little while, and simply listen to the heart of what the guys said.
Let me kick it off with a quote from someone I'll call Jim.
"I'm not entirely sure why, but most guys are almost scared to talk about stuff like this, especially with girls. For me, it's mostly because I feel like most girls are under enough pressure from their girlfriends and fellow peers that it seems unfortunate to subject them to more and unnecessary pressure from guys. Some girls are also pretty sensitive about it, so it's easier to just avoid it."
So girls, here goes a rare peek into what guys think about girl's style.
"Little to no makeup unless really dressing up. Minimal style. Less skinny jeans and more bootcut. More outdoorsy hiking/camping/mountaineering style, and I think some boho is cool. Felt hats and lifted 4 x4's."
"Bring skirts back! Pretty skirts and dresses are absolutely gorgeous and will make a man respect you more. "
"Bring on the makeup! A well-applied make-up is really tasteful, but please stop well before it's looking like icing on a cake. Also, as a guy who manicures my nails: well-manicured nails are a must."
"For makeup, less is more. When I kiss my wife I don't want to kiss powder and goop. The face doesn't have to be bare, but I prefer when makeup is so subtle I didn't know it was on. "
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"I love seeing the ultra-feminine or classic style for dressing up, but I'm also grateful that girls of today can be casual when they wish. Kind of like you mentioned for the guys; sometimes it's not that important which way you're dressing, just that you do it well. "
"Well-fitted skinny jeans and pencil skirts get a huge high five from me. "
"Why do girls cinch themselves into tight clothing? I don't think it makes you look any more slender, and not everything has to be defined at the waist; sometimes loose, flowing clothing is very attractive."
"Ease up on the brows, don't look like you sharpied that junk on."
"I admire a girl who can wear sweatpants confidently."
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"I like when it looks like you put a lot of time and thought into your clothes and styling, then completely forgot about it."
"Guys are reluctant to candidly state their opinions about a girl's style; it's a very vulnerable thing to do and is easily misunderstood. A good example is the proverbial question "how does this outfit make me look?" Put yourself in the guy's shoes: it’s a mine field, and they will almost certainly be taken very differently than they intend, at least by someone. I think girls tend to be in an echo chamber among themselves and form opinions that they think guys would have. Those opinions may or may not be anywhere close to reality.
I love when girls have style that is simple, beautiful, and feminine. The definition and expression of those things can vary culturally and personally, and that diversity is also beautiful."
"I think something girls struggle more with than guys is confidence. Wear something you feel comfortable in, something that makes you happy to wear, something that makes you feel good."
"Beach waves aren't all they're cracked up to be, unless one aspires to be a generic Instagram influencer or another forgettable player on "The Bachelor." Probably the straight or kinky or wavy or curly or downright flat hair one was born with looks better anyway. At least more authentic. I like that idea a lot actually, of curating one's appearance based on what one is, instead of what one is not."
"It's something I have avoided acknowledging for some time because I associate it with being conservative, but I do find dresses and skirts to be more attractive. One thing that I hate to see is a girl wearing knee-length skirts with jeans underneath. I say this very carefully because I know this is because of some people's convictions, but I think either wear the jeans or wear the skirt.
Also, can we stop wearing about 8 tops together? Unless you are layering up for cold weather it isn't necessary. "
"If you'd really like to know what types of clothes make you -individually- look your best from a masculine perspective, one way that could work to get feedback and refine your style is to ask a few men. Consider choosing guys with criteria such as:
- Has an opinion on feminine fashion (which they can share respectfully and constructively)
- Are thoughtful about what they themselves typically wear and aspire to wear
- Have helped a female friend of yours refine her wardrobe (whether their wife, girlfriend, sister etc)"
THE HEART OF A WOMAN
Allow me to pull an excerpt from something a guy friend sent as a response to the query:
I wish girls knew that they are beautiful exactly the way God created them. Really knew it. I've seen girls that express the beautiful person God created them as with their style in a way that shows they understand their worth and dignity. I guess this really goes to a good understanding of identity, because some girls show confusion, insecurity, or even self-hatred with their style.
As I was writing this, I found a tendency to think more harshly about the choices we girls make than I did in the post for the girls to the guys. Part of this is because we tend to be harder on ourselves, but more of it I recognized as how negative women really are about themselves. Thinking about it, I realized it didn't come from the guys. I had heard so much grace and care from them that for the most part, this harshness was coming from being in a feminine echo chamber. Perhaps it is why most guys tip-toe around this topic of girl's style with fear and trembling. We have a hard time developing solid confidence.
More from the guy who sent the above.
A woman who is inwardly at peace, has a sense of purpose larger than herself or her need for a guy, and has developed an attitude of contentment and joy in her perspective is attractive in a way that physical beauty can't compare with. A man's deepest need in relating to his wife is to be able to make her happy, which even a perfect man can't fully do. Many times, it is her choices that play into it, because a girl who is discontent and unhappy will, if she gets a really good guy, have a troubled marriage. If she gets an average guy, lookout!
The heart of you is in the person you discover aside from anyone else. Aside from your parents, aside from your spouse, and aside from your friends. Women are community-oriented and find so much value from those around them, but the path to true confidence doesn't come from what those around you tell or imply to you.
Affirmation is important and relationships good, but true confidence can only be developed in a harder road of loneliness, where you sit down and figure out who you are as a person, what you think, and who you will be. Determine your identity. Have a thought that is all yours. Work out your salvation with God, and God alone. Seriously, He is enough.
Then, peace will be added unto you.
A LIGHTER NOTE...
A friend send this hilarious list of 10 things he wants to say to girls; it was too good not to share.
- Taking pictures of your feet/coffee is not inspirational quote worthy.
- Stop making your profile picture the selfie you took with an adorable orphan who posed with you on your "missions" trip.
- Decide what you believe and dress accordingly, do not own a "church approved" wardrobe and your "vacation wardrobe."
- Say no to hair puffs.
- Make-up should not be applied with a trowel; less is more.
- Tired of your moderate-to-severe stress of casual skirt shopping? Good news! Casual dresses do exist!
- If you're Mennonite, don't pretend not to be. Ever. No! Not even when you go to Pinecraft.
- Wear sports apparel only if you actually play the sport. Yes, I know that means not displaying that you are a better volley-ball player than those around you wherever you go.
- NO GLITTER. No! (Slaps hand)
- Don't be ashamed of who you are, surround yourself with good people who like you for who you are as a person. And 'be the you' God made you to be.
P.S. After a conversation about why girls post pictures of their feet, a guy friend sent me this: "photos of feet are simply the best. They show toe-tal perspective, they nail good taste, express humility of sole, and so much down to earth character. If a guy tries to tell you otherwise, he’s just a heel trying to avoid de feet.
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