We read the magazines, scroll the social media pages, and talk endlessly with friends in search of the best style tips. It’s just one of those things we’ve all been doing for years, and it never seems to get boring!
Here’s the problem – very few style tips are actually written with different body types in mind. Fashion writers and social media stars tend to only talk about one particular body type, and very few of us actually have it! Take their tips with a few grains of salt, because it’s not always realistic to apply their advice.
We’re all better off getting tailored style tips that we can implement immediately.
No more guesswork or filling in the blanks – you want the time-tested methods that give you the best look for your unique dimensions and proportions—and that extends to your athleisure and yoga wardrobe, too!
If you’ve been looking for a style guide that is meant to be more than just a showcase for the runway model physique, look no further! We’re here to make sense of style and give you some tips that really work for the different body shapes.
Key Body Measurements
You may think you have a particular body type based on what you’ve been told by the media and retail culture for years and years. It’s important to get rid of all those old ways of thinking, because more often than not, they’re totally off the mark. In fact, your body shape isn’t even just about where you gain weight—a lot of it stems from bone structure.
That’s why we recommend you go back to square one and do the four main measurements from the top to the bottom of your physique and get the real story about your body shape. You may learn something new, and it will help you make better style choices as well.
Get your measuring tape ready and maybe bring over a friend to ensure the most accurate measurements – that’s the best way to do it!
Your first stop is the shoulders, more specifically, the very top of your shoulders at the broadest point possible. This is tough to do yourself, so ask a pal to help you out.
Women tend to overlook shoulders when taking measurements, so don’t fall into that trap. It’s an important aspect of your physique, and clothes can either accentuate or diminish their appearance.
Moving down to the bust area, you can either choose to measure nude or keep your bra on to get a more accurate measurement – it’s your call. Keep that tape snug to the fullest part of your chest, but don’t compress to the point of discomfort for the most accurate bust measurement.
When it’s time to measure your waist and hips, don’t get them mixed up. Your natural waist is typically just above your belly button at the narrowest part – not at the waistband of your pants. Don’t “suck in” for your waist measurement or strap the tape too tight, because you want your clothes to fit comfortably and not restrict your range of movement.
For your hip measurement, you’re looking for the widest point – that includes your hip bones and butt. This measurement will make sure you look great in any pants, leggings, skirts, or whatever else you have in mind for your style revolution.
With these measurements in mind, it’s time to talk about body shape! We’ll reference these areas in the “main four” body types, so read through them all to see where you land.
Keep in mind that no body is a perfect match for any of these categories. They are simply a convenient way to make sense of basic body types and help you unlock your ideal style.
Don’t box yourself into any particular one if it doesn’t seem right. Keep an open mind, try out different stuff, and take risks to achieve your favorite new looks.
Pear Shaped Body Type
If you’ve got a pear body shape, your hips and thighs are the stars of the show. You’ve also got a decent waist-to-hip ratio that’s definitely worth showing off, so wear outfits that draw some attention to the midsection if you want to turn heads!
How do you pull this off? Let’s start from the top. The best tops for pear shapes have open necklines that draw the eye from the shoulders down to the waist. No need to drape long, flowing garments and hide your natural proportions unless you’re deliberately trying to downplay your physique.
A square-neck top or any open V-neck will work wonders for your top half and even add some volume to your shoulders to balance things out.
You can get away with tops that narrow at the waist, which is what so many women want! Find some pants with stretch styles, so you stay comfortable and experiment with various cuts from slim to bootcut.
Apple Shaped Body Type
This body shape is also sometimes referred to as the inverted triangle body type, although there are sometimes differences between the two terms based on where you carry your body fat. The apple body shape refers to bodies with uniform dimensions from the bust to the hips – not overly curvy or super defined.
The advantage of the apple shape is appealing shoulders and legs, as well as a bigger-than-normal bust that you can choose to accentuate or tone down.
When selecting tops, you might as well show off a bit of skin around the upper arms and neckline, so try out wraps, peplums, Dolman-sleeves, and maybe a short tunic top.
Some apple-shapes like to create a more defined waistline using drawstrings or elastic bands around the middle, or you can just let it all flow for a more free and natural look.
You’ve got legs to be proud of, so try some curvy jeans or slacks that fit close and give you room to roam. Capri-cut pants are a great pic to add some visual length.
Hourglass Body Type
Equal width shoulders and hips with a defined waist and curvy silhouette? You’ve probably got the hourglass shape that so many women desire—think Marilyn Monroe.
Put your great physique on display by wearing tops that highlight the proportions of the hourglass figure. This can be done tastefully without showing too much skin or making yourself uncomfortable. Just look for blouses that slim around the middle and don’t add too much volume to the upper body.
One word of caution when it comes to selecting pants for the hourglass body shape: boot cuts and flares are great for balancing out your silhouette, while super-skinny jeans may not be as flattering. You can pull off high-waisted old-school pants, too, so why not give those a try?
Athletic Shaped Body Type
When we think of athletic body shapes, it’s not all about muscle mass and washboard abs. This category really refers to a straight or rectangle body shape without a ton of curves and a longer frame. You likely also have narrow hips. You have a versatile canvas to work with, so it’s your choice what to accentuate!
Those of us with an athletic body type likely have elegant shoulders and collarbones, so why not reveal some skin with various necklines and detailed collars? Deep V shirts work well for this body type, and you can even include some extra volume in the arms for high-level runway looks.
For the bottom half, go for some high-rise jeans that really draw attention to those long legs. You can go for flared silhouettes if you want to make a groovy statement, or stick with slim and straight cuts for balance in the lower body.
When summer rolls around, you can rock some short-shorts and tank tops without a care in the world. Let the sun shine and soak up every ray from head to toe.
Need Some More Guidance?
As you let all those fashion tips sink in, you may still be wondering where the heck to start. We get it – overhauling your wardrobe is confusing, time-consuming, and the cost can add up quickly.
Maybe you’ve already mastered casual clothing and formal wear, but you’re at a loss when it comes to athleisure or clothing for the gym and yoga. Those are categories that remain a mystery to many of us, and the celebrity hype from the Kardashians isn’t necessarily helping.
To demystify the process of buying athletic wear, we put together a fabulous subscription box offer that ships amazing yoga outfits to your door once a month. What makes Yoga Club different? Our stuff is extremely high quality and tailored to your exact specifications!
You may not have a personal shopper that knows your body type and preferences, but when you fill out our quick quiz, we’ll gladly fill that role for you. No more guessing, no more hours wasted in the fitting room, and no more frustration. Just perfect outfits delivered directly, every single time.
Finally, a service that actually caters to your body type instead of a one-size-fits-all approach. Did we mention you can save 50% off some of the latest and greatest looks? It doesn’t get much better than that!
Your body type is one-of-a-kind, so dress in a way that highlights your best features from the office to the gym and everywhere in between. Here at YogaClub, we're basically your personal stylist—and we want to make sure that you feel your best at all times. We’re here to help make it easy, so sign up and get started now!