Congratulations! Whether you are contemplating a mission or have already received your individual call, this is an exciting time in your life! There is lots to think about and lots to prepare. But let’s get completely honest here, we are girls and we want to know what we “can” and “can’t” wear for the next 18 months!
Will I have to give up my style for drab and boring (dare I even say frumpy) clothes to fit the “missionary image” or can I still retain my clothing personality and be a representative for the Lord? Good news ladies, the Church has recently updated their sister missionary dress standards and the answer is you can do both!
LDS.org has a great missionary section and a big chunk of that is dedicated to missionary dress and grooming standards. Speaking about the new sister missionary clothing guidelines, President Thomas S. Monson stated,
“You can dress attractively without being immodest. Within the Lord’s guidelines there is room for you to be lively, vibrant, and beautiful both in your dress and your actions.”
The packet you received (or will receive) when you got your call has the Church’s standards for dressing on the mission and it is what you should follow when preparing your wardrobe for the next 18 months. Not only do you have to fit everything into your suitcase (not an easy task ladies), you have to live with it 7 days a week for the next 78 weeks. Prayerful choose what you want to take with you and what will help others identify you a as happy, loving, and vibrant emissary of the Lord.
Here is some specific help (with some great pictures) from the Church:
- Suits, Jackets, and Dresses
- Blouses and tops
- Shoes and Accessories
- Exercise and other activities
- Personal Grooming (lest you pass this one up there are hair and makeup helps! Bet you didn’t know that was on LDS.org did ya!)
- General Guildenes
- Frequently Asked Questions
If you have specific questions, your Mission President’s wife is a great resource to go to. She will know what the local weather is like and what is or is not acceptable to wear in your specific mission.
When choosing your outfits, ultimately keep in mind what Elder Jeffery R. Holland said in an address to Young Women called Modesty is Always in Fashion:
“We have always been invited to present our best selves. … We should be recognizable in appearance as well as in behavior that we truly are disciples of Christ.”
For more Sister Missionary help, check out:
Young Women and serving a mission – should I go?
The Beat of a Missionary
5 Tips on Learning a Language
Every Girl Needs a Purse! (Stylish bags for Sister Missionaries)