Cultures and societies around the world expect women to cover up. We’re asked to cover our bodies, our hair and sometimes even our faces. When its not for cultural or religious reasons, women who dress or behave in a certain way are called slags, sluts or whores. The same derogatory labels and restrictive dress codes do not apply to men. Unlike women, men cannot dress in a way that suggests they want sex. Male clothing is not dictated by society or by religion - in many cultures men are naturally empowered.
Lingerie empowers women. Female empowerment can come in a variety of forms. Obviously, a big part of feminism is women having political, economic and educational equality to men. However, female empowerment also involves making women feel good for being women. This is where lingerie comes in. Wearing beautiful lingerie makes women feel sexy, strong and confident. Lingerie encourages women to display their bodies with confidence. It allows women to feel unapologetically feminine.
Many ‘feminists’ are quick to point out that women like Beyonce, who count themselves as feminists, actually undermine the feminist cause by using their sexuality to further their interests. However, these feminists forget the lengths that men have gone to to suppress female sexuality. Dictating dress, preserving female virginity and of course FGM are all attempts by men in positions of power to control women sexually. Lingerie is clothing which enables women to take back that sexual control. If worn for someone else, lingerie allows women to take charge. In all circumstances, it enables all women to dress how they like all the time, whether they want to cover up or not. All feminists should understand that women have to right to dress how they please, that includes wearing lingerie when and how they see fit.
So wear your lingerie with pride. Wear it to feel strong, empowered and unashamed of your femininity. Most importantly, know that you can wear a lacy thong with suspenders to match and still strive for sexual equality across the world.