Whether you’re a rectangle, an hourglass, a pear, or a triangle, there are ways to dress your body shape. It all starts with understanding what shape your body falls into and how to bump it up for the best look possible. There’s no need to worry about feeling like you can’t find anything to wear. With this handy guide on dressing for your shape, you’ll find out everything from how to highlight your assets to which styles suit you best. Ready? Let’s get started!
What is your body shape?
If you're not sure what shape your body falls into, don't fret! It's easy to find out.
Start by thinking about your back - does it curve in or is it more of a straight line? This is the first indicator of what shape your body might be.
Next, look at your hips. Do they stick out? Or are they more tucked in? This will help you determine if you have an apple shape or a pear shape.
Is there a noticeable difference between your upper and lower halves? If so, then you're most likely an hourglass shape.
If there isn't much difference to be seen between your upper and lower halves, then you might be a rectangle or triangle shape.
The Best Styles for your Body Shape
Every body shape is unique. Knowing your body shape will help you create the most flattering wardrobe possible.
One of the best ways to identify your shape is to check out what parts of your body protrude forward and which parts recede. The parts that protrude forward are usually going to be a little more obvious because they're bigger and attract more attention. And the parts that recede will be less noticeable, but they'll still have a big impact on how you dress because clothes hang differently on them.
The five main body shapes are: rectangle, hourglass, pear, diamond and inverted triangle. Let's take a closer look at each one!
Measure for Success
Shoulders - Measure around the highest point of your shoulders.
Bust - Start at the fullest part of the breasts, then wrap the tape around you, going under your armpits.
Waist - Measure around the smallest point of your waist, this will be above your belly button and below your ribcage.
Hips - Measure around the largest part of your butt.
If you’re a rectangle, you’ve got an elongated torso that tends to be strong-looking and strong-feeling. To help showcase these qualities, it’s important to wear clothes that are well-fitted for your frame. You want to dress in layers so that you can show off any curves or feminine aspects of your figure. The goal is to create an illusion of sexiness while retaining an elegant silhouette. If wide necklines are tough for you to pull off, then try something like a long turtle neck or boat neck. These styles will draw the eye up to your face for a better proportioned look on top and will also work well if you don't feel like showing off your shoulders or arms.
You should also try wearing clothes with ruching around the stomach area which will help smooth out any bumps there while adding contour around the hips and thighs for a more streamlined look.
If you have a curvy figure that is hourglass shaped, you’re lucky! That means you have a smaller waist and broader hips. This body shape is perfect for wearing bolder pieces to help create the illusion of a slimmer waist. You can add a belt to your outfit, or wear an interesting necklace or accessory.
An important thing to remember about this body shape is that it should be elongated if possible. For example, don't wear cropped pants because it will shorten the appearance of your legs and make your waist look bigger than it is.
When most people think of a pear shape, they often picture a woman who is heavier below the waist and slimmer above. This shape is characterised by an hourglass figure that is rounder in the hips and thighs and narrows up in the torso. A person with a pear shaped body can find it difficult to find clothes that fit well. Wearing clothes that skim over the body will help balance your figure. Anything that's loose on top with fitted bottoms will work great for you! You'll also want to wear skirts or dresses without any tucking in the front—think A-line or flared skirts or dresses.
If you have a diamond shape, you're blessed with an hourglass figure and a smaller waistline. This shape is characterised by wider hips and narrower shoulders. Your challenge will be to balance your silhouette with complementary bottoms that fit your hips and longer tops that balance the proportions of your frame. If you're looking for a go-to outfit, skirts can help break up the width of your hips, while dresses over jeans can lengthen the look of your legs. Shirts with empire waists or A-line skirts are going to give you the most flattering fit. Skirts with a little flare at the hem will also look amazing!
Inverted Triangles are not as common as other shapes. They're wider on top and smaller on the bottom, with a narrow waist that's at the same width or thinner than their hips.
For triangle-shaped figures, dark colors may be more flattering than light ones. Choose clothing that will draw attention to your waistline, like pencil skirts with elastic waists. Dresses with straight shoulders can help balance out your figure.