In today’s world, body positivity and body pride are increasingly important mantras, and that’s a good thing. Love the skin you’re in, bold and beautiful – these are campaigns designed to combat some of the hard-sell, confidence-shattering ads that have been churned out into society for years.
Dressing for your body type is a matter of choice. Your clothes are an expression, and you should wear anything that makes you feel good, regardless of what other people say.
However, if you want some tips and ideas on how to flatter your own particular shape and proportions, we’ve compiled some suggestions.
Read on to find out how to dress for your body shape and look beautiful!
What Body Type Are You?
It’s impossible to dress in a flattering way if you aren’t quite sure of your shape – and many women aren’t. While you probably won’t fit into an exact category, that’s just fine. These ideas are only meant to help you get a general idea of your body type.
Remember, practice positivity and even if you want to change things about yourself, appreciate the existing beauty in who you are and how you are.
To measure yourself, grab a tape measure and take measurements around your shoulders, your bust, your waist, and your hips. This should help you determine your general body shape. Most women occupy somewhere between two shapes, and that’s totally normal.
So, let’s look into some of the standard body types you might hear described.
If your bust is larger than your hips, you might consider yourself an “apple.” You might find that your waist is less defined, and your shoulders are a little broader than others.
This is often the sought-after figure, but it’s no more beautiful than the other shapes. It means that your waist is narrow, and your bust and hips are about equal in size. You may have a more curvy body.
Similar to the hourglass figure, but with less pronounced curves and a wider waist. This is the most common body type and produces an overall “straight” sort of figure, without any noticeable dips or bulges.
The opposite of the apple, people with a pear-shaped figure, tend to carry a little more of their weight around their hips and behinds. Often, this is paired with muscular legs and thighs and may be considered the “curviest” body type.
Things to Remember
When establishing your body shape, bear in mind that this is predominantly determined by your genetics.
You might feel the need to hit the gym a bit more often or perhaps alter your diet, but your fundamental shape probably won’t change much, regardless of your eating or exercise habits.
It’s important to fortify your confidence and remind yourself how beautiful we all are, regardless of shape and size. Even if you don’t feel like it, talk to yourself using positive language and reinforce the idea of your unique beauty in your head.
Style Tips for the Apple Shape
Whether you’re in the market for flowing dresses or activewear for the gym, there are plenty of options for your shape. Try to choose things that gently accentuate your cleavage, define your silhouette, and create a vertical sweeping line from the floor up.
You may have great legs if you’re an apple shape, so flaunt them. Choose clothes that show them off, whether that’s shape-hugging leggings, short skirts, short dresses, or skinny jeans.
Fasten belts around your slimmest point, not where you feel your “waist should be,” and make use of tunic tops to create a smooth line between your waist and bust.
Layers are a good way to make the most of your shape, and knee-length jackets, cardigans, coats, or sweaters will all look great. A-lines are also a flattering approach. Alternatively, you can aim for garments that end mid-thigh.
Wrap dresses are excellent choices that make the most of your cleavage and hug in around your rib cage rather than your waist, giving you a very flattering shape.
You can probably pull off any level of fitted clothing on your legs or go bare-legged with dresses and skirts. Tights with a tunic or baggy sweater on top create a great casual look.
This goes for the latest yoga gear and sportswear too. You should always prioritize practicality over aesthetics but aim for clothing that will draw to your cleavage and your legs, not focusing so much on your waist.
Style Tips for the Hourglass Shape
If you come into the hourglass category, you’re going to be looking at clothes that make the most of your curves. Choose anything that flatters them and accentuates your small waist.
You should look for slim-fit clothing that’s simple and will let your natural shape shine through. Avoid ruffles around your bust or hips, as they may distract too much.
Select clothing that makes the most of both, enhancing the balance instead of upsetting it.
V-neck tops and dresses will nicely accentuate your cleavage while still highlighting your shape. Choose t-shirts that are fitted at the waist, not baggy, and preferably ones with a V-neck. Maybe avoid button-ups that go all the way to your neck or turtleneck sweaters.
Pencil skirts and sleek dresses help you make the most of your even hips and flatter your small waist. You can choose leggings or skinny jeans, especially if you are wearing a tunic top or similar. Use belts to increase the “hug” of baggier clothing, and try to position them to fit the middle of the “hourglass.”
Square necklines and belted coats can help you make the most of your shape even in winter, and don’t hesitate to drape yourself in scarves to stay warm in a V-neck.
Style Tips for the Rectangle Shape
If you’re more of a rectangle, you may have trouble fully accentuating your curves, but you can still make the most of the great balance your body offers. Some say that the rectangle comes with ultimate flexibility, so you’ve got choices galore.
With that said, try to choose an area of your body that you want to emphasize and design your outfit around that.
For example, if you want to make the most of your cleavage, aim for fitted V-neck tops and blouses. Alternatively, consider showing off your shoulders and upper back with a halter top.
Choose a short dress to accentuate your legs, or flatter your arms with spaghetti straps and racerback designs. Experiment with various trendy athleisure tops because you’ve got the ideal body shape for them!
However, you may want to avoid high-waisted pants since they tend to wash away the definition in the waist. Choose low-cuts or medium-rise pants, and remember that flares or bootcut can make you look taller and bring a bit of extra attention to your legs.
Accessorize whatever part of your body you want with scarves, necklaces, earrings, or even anklets to draw the eye and make the most of your figure.
Style Tips for the Pear Shape
You have narrow shoulders and full hips that can make any pair of pants look fantastic. Plus, you can go wild with the tops. Choose between puffy and frilly blouses, scoop-necks, bell sleeves, ribbons, and everything else.
If you aren’t a fan of your legs or behind, choose dark-colored pants and pair them with bright tops. This will keep eyes on your torso. However, don’t be afraid to flaunt your shape and dress with confidence. Bootleg or flared pants can help bring more shape to your lower half.
You should be looking to accentuate your torso, bust, and shoulders, so aim for tops that ruffle and puff in the right places. Also, try to choose jackets that finish above your hips or go down to mid-thigh.
You can make almost any neckline work, but use a good bra to make the most of your cleavage and give yourself support. Short tops with high-waisted pants or skirts look good.
Almost any dress will look fantastic on you, but again, it’s best to choose one which accentuates your torso. Ruffled sleeves, ribbons, a lacy neck, or good accessories are all great ways to achieve this.
Remember that no matter what body type you are, there’s a surefire way to dress in a flattering way to look fantastic. Millions of other people share your body shape and pull off various looks every day – even your favorite celebs and fashion icons.
You don’t have to stick to any of the rules in the book, but our guides might just help you to try out combinations that will work for you and your body.
Finally, consider signing up for a yoga clothing subscription service for a little extra guidance in the activewear department. We’ve got you covered with all the right shapes, sizes, and styles.