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Modesty Shorts
aka: Skirt Over Shorts
Perfect way to prevent being a Panty Fighter. Disappointed?
Short skirts are feminine and sexy, but if you move too much, it's very hard to avoid Panty Shots while wearing one. This is where Modesty Shorts come in. They let a woman jump, tumble, fight, or even fly without anyone catching a glimpse of her underwear. Other common variations are large puffy bloomers in non-period pieces which are used as a bit of a fancier version normally on more gothic characters. In Western works, spankies are worn for this purpose under cheerleading outfits.

This trope is common in anime, as School Uniforms are almost always extremely short. It is often worn by Kick Chicks, Cheerleaders, Action Girls, Tomboys or anyone else with an active lifestyle.

Compare Skirt over Slacks, which are visible when a woman walks normally and used as a fashion statement. May be combined with Zettai Ryouiki.

An alternative solution for this problem is the Magic Skirt.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

     Advertising 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Mikoto Misaka of the A Certain Magical Index franchise has this trope as her fashion calling card, much to Kuroko Shirai's dismay. Also, Shizuri Mugino does it once. Mikoto's clones wear striped panties instead, which often helps Touma determine when he's speaking with one of them, rather than with the original.
  • Bakemonogatari: Suruga Kanbaru wears this, in conjunction with her school uniform. Of course it's left unclear whether or not she's actually wearing anything underneath them.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima!:
    • Setsuna wears cycling shorts under her skirt, and has a bit of both shyness and tomboyish traits. Akamatsu did this to show that she was a less sexual character than the other girls. She later ditches these, but wears long-boyish underwear instead.
    • Asuna dons in later chapters, too. Although in her case it's less about tomboyishness and more about not wanting to flash people whenever she fights in a miniskirt after a certain Going Commando incident in the Kyoto arc...
  • Hayate the Combat Butler:
    • Katsura Hinagiku wears a skirt over her bicycle shorts.
    • Izumi also wears these in the first season of the anime for a quick joke/censorship reasons, but in the manga she is shown not to, at least on some occasions. She was wearing them when Hayate needed to use his special attack on Yukiji and feared the side effect would lift Izumi's skirt.
  • Pretty Cure has many examples of biking shorts. In fact, Fresh Pretty Cure! and Suite Pretty Cure ♪ are the only seasons where this hasn't occurred, with other exceptions being Cure White and Cure Egret, who are aided by a Magic Skirt instead.
  • Satsuki Miyanoshita of Ghost Stories wears them in one episode, after getting tired of Hajime flipping her skirt and revealing her panties.
  • Eureka of Eureka Seven wears a pair under her very short dress.
  • Ai Nanasaki from Amagami SS wears her School Swimsuit under her clothes, leading Jun'ichi to think he got a view of her panties when... he didn't.
  • Suzuna of Eyeshield 21 wears biker shorts under her cheer uniform. This is partially because she's the Token Mini-Moe of the cheerleading team and partially to reflect her Short Tank personality.
  • A common Running Gag in How to Read Manga is "don't you dare wear bloomers/shorts": basically, a man gets so angry when the Panty Shot he anticipated is ruined by the girl in question wearing shorts or covering bloomers that he slaps her.
  • Crystal, when she's introduced in Pokémon Special, drops her skirt to take on some Slugma, revealing that she's wearing bike shorts underneath.
    • With all of Sapphire's impressive physical feats, it was really quite thoughtful of Ruby to make her bike shorts along with the skirt.
    • An episode of Pokémon where we see May changing into a swimsuit confirms that that strip of white cloth over her shorts is indeed a skirt, rather than an extension of her undershirt.
  • Kaname in an early chapter of Full Metal Panic! wears gym shorts under her skirt to prevent panty shots.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Vivian Wong does this in the 4kids dub—but ''not'' in the original.
  • Wendy Garret of GUN×SWORD wears black bike shorts underneath her trademark yellow dress: probably a wise choice for someone who plans to hike across a whole continent in a short skirt.
  • Bakuman。: In the Show Within a Show PCP, Annojo Mai has these. Mashiro and Takagi were very deliberate about this.
  • A teacher in Urusei Yatsura gave Lum a pair of shorts to wear underneath her uniform after noticing that she was flashing other students as she flew around the school.
  • The title character in Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne wears these with her Magical Girl outfit.
  • Isanami from Brave 10 wears cycling shorts under her miko open attire. In 1599.
  • Fabiola Iglesias from Black Lagoon wears black shorts under her full length French Maid uniform. And she does still need them when she busts out her capoeira moves.
  • Plotpoint in Ultimate Teacher where the resident Cute Bruiser Hinako can only fight when she's wearing Lucky Kitty-gym bloomers, brand that she's worn constantly since childhood so that she could fight without getting teased about showing her panties.
  • The extras in one volume of Fruits Basket examined the school uniforms. It notes that if your skirt is as short as Tohru's, it's a good idea to wear shorts underneath.
  • Arisa Bannings' battle outfit in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Innocent, which is a pink Mini Dress Of Power and jacket combo worn over a pair of cycling shorts.
  • In All Rounder Meguru Kamiya explains that everyone wears gym shorts under skirts these days. Cue Big "NO!" from two upperclassmen.
    "What's with them?"
    "That's the sound of their lecherous dreams being shattered..."
  • Kiki's Delivery Service uses the bloomers variety to avoid inappropriate upskirt shots of the often-flying heroine.
  • In episode 9 of Tokyo Mew Mew, Bu Ling is shown to wear her regular clothes, shorts and all, under her maid uniform.
  • Sana Kurata is revealed to be wearing a pair when her school's gang of bullies shred her skirt with box cutters.
  • Variable Geo: Jun wears a black pair of bike shorts under the skirt of her waitress uniform. Which prevents free peeks during her high flying specials, like her signature finish: the "Kubota Special".

    Comic Books 
  • Added to Supergirl's costume from late 2009 until her costume change for the New 52 reboot. According to the artist Jamal Igle, “At the first meeting I had with [Matt Idleson, the editor] after I got the book, he said, ‘I never want to see Supergirl’s panties again'."

    Fan Fics 

    Film 
  • In the first Resident Evil film, Alice wears black shorts underneath her red dress.
  • In A League of Their Own the female baseball players uniform includes skirts and shorts. Also in the Real Life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League upon which the film is based.
    • The players originally wanted to wear slacks, as they had always done when playing baseball. They are at first horrified and disgusted to find that their uniforms will include skirts, with the catcher muttering: "I have to squat in that thing."
  • In The Poseidon Adventure, all of the women except Stella Stevens were wearing shorts under their evening gowns, for some reason.
  • Go Go Yubari in Kill Bill.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Firefly: River wears black bike shorts under her dresses. There's a couple times where she skips the skirt part and just wears the shorts with a top, as well.
  • See a female in a skirt on Power Rangers? There's a really good chance that they have either black or Ranger colored shorts on underneath. Kimberly has gone even further by wearing shorts over shorts.
    • Tori from Power Rangers Ninja Storm goes the extra step of wearing shorts while morphed. However, in comparison to other female Rangers with contrasting leggings in the franchise, it actually gives the allusion of a Panty Shot rather than actual Modesty Shorts.
  • While Super Sentai typically loves the Magic Skirt trope, there are some exceptions.
  • Austin and Ally has Ally wearing short dresses in almost every episode, and she usually has black shorts on if she does something that flips her dress up. It's usually just a shadow, since it IS a Disney show.
  • Shake It Up had Rocky wear this at least once. She wore biker shorts during a spotlight dance, and for good reason since the skirt spent almost as much time up as it did down.
  • That's Just Me had an episode where Elizabeth wears a jumper-dress to gym class because it's the last week of school and they won't be doing anything. Her mom doubts this, however, and makes her put gym shorts on under it.
    • In the first episode of the sixth season, ''Do I HAVE to Go to High School?!', she's been told her class will be active, so instead of dressing nicely but casually, she shows up in a super fancy 50's style outfit with shorts under the skirt. The activity was later revealed to be dancing, so she never needed shorts, but her feet hurt from her diamond flipflops.

    Music Videos 
  • The "Caramella Girls" are shown wearing shorts under their short skirts while they're dancing the Caramelldansen.
  • Kpop idols wear safety shorts under their skirts and dress and be seen in music videos while dancing and twirling like in f(x)'s "Electric Shock" and "Rum Pum Pum Pum" as well as Girls Gerneration's "Visual Dream".

    Video Games 
  • Persona 4: Chie wears shorts under her skirt, perfectly justificable because she is a Kick Chick.
  • Quistis and Rinoa of Final Fantasy VIII, Prishe of Final Fantasy XI and Lightning of Final Fantasy XIII.
  • Serah Farron in Final Fantasy XIII-2 wears black bike shorts under her dress.
  • Lucca from Chrono Trigger, at least in the official artwork.
  • Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth with Kay Faraday — official artwork shows that she is wearing a pair of shorts under her skirt.
  • Bloomers are prevalent in Touhou fanart due to the Lolita-style outfits and highly-acrobatic depiction of the game's Bullet Hell fighting.
    • Also canonical for at least some of the characters in the spin-off fighting games.
  • Sakura Kasugano from Street Fighter wears her gym shorts underneath her uniform. Though given how short they are, the effect was mostly lost on most western gamers.
    • Street Fighter Alpha 3: Karin Kanzuki wears a red schoolgirl outfit over her biker shorts.
    • Super Street Fighter IV: Ibuki's alternate outfit is her school uniform, with bike shorts under the skirt.
  • Aika from Skies of Arcadia wears black shorts under her mini.
  • Ling Xiaoyu from Tekken commonly wears a Chinese dress (called a qipao) with shorts underneath; if not for these, she'd be bare all the way from the hips downward. Compare with Street Fighter's Chun-Li, who would be the same if not for her tights.
    • And for extra modesty points, when wearing her bonus schoolgirl uniform in Tekken 3, one of her victory poses note  is disabled to prevent her from blatantly flashing her panties.
  • In a male example, classic depictions of Simon Belmont had him wearing small shorts under the "skirt" plates of his armor.
  • Seth, from Lost Odyssey.
  • Pit's redesign used in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Kid Icarus: Uprising features black shorts under his toga (smart move, with all the flying around he does).
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: Young Link (Hero of Time) has a set of matching green shorts beneath his tunic in all his appearances. Other "young" versions of Link with no pants or tights only appear from the top down view, negating the problem altogether (and yes, it is a problem, since he's a prepubescent boy).
  • Almost all of the Cartoon Doll Emporoium dress-up dolls, since they're made for kids, will have shorts when you strip them instead of normal panties, although while a few games have normal panties, they are usually black. The Dress Up Dream dolls, which usually share ties with CDE, do this same thing.
  • Unless they are wearing a full-body costume, female Miis in Mario Tennis Open wear shorts under their skirts.

    Web Comics 
  • In Rusty and Co., Madeline is sensibly wearing (anachronistic) biker shorts under her leather skirt in her first appearance. (In the second, she's wearing winter clothes, making the matter moot.)

    Web Original 
  • In Worm, Glory Girl's superhero costume (a white dress with cape, boots, and tiara) includes a pair of these.
  • Called "activity shorts" by Cat Davis from Cat on the Prowl.

     Western Animation 
  • On Recess, Upside-Down Girl wears shorts under her jumper to avoid any panty shots when she's hanging from the monkey bars.
  • Subverted on King of the Hill. Hank sees Luanne wearing an oversized T-shirt and apparently nothing else. When he asks her to Please Put Some Clothes On, she raises her arms to reveal "I'm wearing shorts." Hank is disturbed by just how scanty the shorts are.
    • Another subversion occurs moments later, when Bobby enters the kitchen wearing an oversized shirt of his own. Without lifting its hem, he removes the underwear he has on underneath it and puts on another pair fresh from the laundry, eliciting the following response:
    Hank: Six A.M. and already the boy ain't right.
  • My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Passionate Sports Girl Rainbow Dash (the human version) wears shorts under her skirt.

    Real Life 
  • Junior high school girls in Japan typically wear their gym shorts (knee-length) under their (calf-length) uniform skirts. This is a practical necessity when they have to switch to their P.E. clothes two or three times a day, in schools which lack changing rooms. Most boys wear their shorts under their uniform slacks for the same reason.
    • This also applies to elementary school girls: many of them, especially in the older grades, wear shorts to keep their modesty.
  • The majority of schoolgirls around the world wear shorts under their school skirts, whether it's for warmth or modesty.
  • Skorts (skirt + shorts), also known as culottes, which are Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Cosplayers dressing as sexy/scantly dressed characters can choose to wear underwear underneath the costume to prevent breaking city codes or harassment.
  • Cheerleaders typically wear a type of shorts that are a bit of a cross between large panties and tight shorts. They would basically have to since most routines seem at least partly designed to flip up their skirts as much as possible.
  • Medieval Icelandic women wore pants — women's pants — under their skirts.
  • Many idols wear them in performances, to keep their pants from showing in dancing numbers.


Magic PantsTropes in PantsNot-Wearing-Pants Dream
Minidress of PowerDresses, Gowns and SkirtsParachute Petticoat
Modest RoyaltyCostume TropesMonster Modesty
Eye TropesImageSource/Anime & MangaChrono Crusade

alternative title(s): Skirt Over Shorts
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