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The Best T-Shirt for Every Body Shape

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A t-shirt is just a t-shirt, right? You might think that until you put on one that ‘just doesn’t look right’. Keep reading to see which t-shirt will look best on each body shape and my favorite picks at every price level.


Please note: I use affiliate marketing partners to help make shopping easier for you. When you click on affiliate links, I will receive a small amount of compensation at no extra charge to you.

Pear-shaped women are smaller through the chest and shoulders, have a defined waist, and are wider through the hips and booty area. (Not sure what shape you are? Take the Quiz!)

Look for t-shirts that…

  • Are fitted or semi-fitted. Loose t-shirts will hide your waist and make you look bigger on the bottom than you are. Choosing more fitted options helps define your curves.
  • Are boat neck, square neck, or scoop neck. The more horizontal the neckline, the better the t-shirt will look on you. That’s because it visually makes your top half look wider and more in proportion to your bottom half.
  • Have embellished necklines. If you love a little glitz- you’re in luck! Shirts with embellished necklines will look great on you.
  • Have sleeves shorter than elbow length. The best sleeve length for you is the middle of the upper arm.

Avoid t-shirts that…

  • End at the widest part of your hips. This will make you look wider than you are.
  • Are baggy…unless you are tucking them into something right at the waist (like a pair of high waisted pants or a high waisted pencil skirt).
  • Have basic crew necks.

Top T-shirt picks for Pear Shapes:

Want to know more about dressing your shape? You’re in luck- I wrote a blog post and created a whole e-book with outfit ideas just for Pears!

Apple shaped women have similar size chests/shoulders and hips/booty areas with a wider middle section. (Not sure what shape you are? Take the Quiz!)

Look for t-shirts that…

  • Are made from a substantial fabric. A thicker fabric will not cling to your middle area.
  • Are v-neck or scoop neck.
  • With hemlines that hit around your hip bones.
  • Have either short sleeves (middle of upper arm or shorter) or longer sleeves (middle of forearm or lower).   

Avoid t-shirts that…

  • Made from a light-weight jersey. These will cling and accenuate your middle.
  • Have bright prints or patterns across the middle.

Top T-shirt picks for Apple Shapes:

Want to know more about dressing your shape? You’re in luck- I wrote a whole blog post about how to dress your best as an Apple!

Hourglass shaped women are fuller through the chest and hips area and have a smaller, defined waist. (Not sure what shape you are? Take the Quiz!)

Look for t-shirts that…

  • Are fitted or semi-fitted. Loose t-shirts will hide your waist and make you look bigger than you are. Choosing more fitted options helps define your curves.
  • Have hemlines that fall around your belly button. I know this sounds short, but it’s the most flattering length! Just make sure the shirt doesn’t show any skin when you raise your arms in a normal manner.
  • Have sleeves shorter than elbow length. The best sleeve length for you is the middle of the upper arm.

Avoid t-shirts that…

  • End at the widest part of your hips. This will make you look wider than you are.
  • Are baggy…unless you are tucking them into something right at the waist (like a pair of high waisted pants or a high waisted pencil skirt).

Top T-shirt picks for Hourglass Shapes:

Want to know more about dressing your shape? You’re in luck- I wrote a whole blog post about dressing hourglass ladies!

Inverted Triangle shaped women are wider through the chest and shoulders, have a defined waist, and have a smaller hip/booty area.
(Not sure what shape you are? Take the Quiz!)

Look for t-shirts that…

  • Are fitted or semi-fitted. Loose t-shirts will hide your waist and give you a potato sack look.
  • Are v-neck, deep scoop neck, or crew neck. Look for necklines that have more vertical lines (like a v-neck) than horizontal lines (like a boat neck). This keeps your shoulders from looking wider than they are.
  • Have simple necklines and sleeves.
  • Have longer sleeves. The most flattering T’s on you will have elbow length or longer sleeves.

Avoid t-shirts that…

  • Have fancy sleeves (ruffles, poofy, etc.)
  • Have really thick fabric. You will actually be better off in t-shirts with thinner fabric.
  • Have boat necks.

Top T-shirt picks for Inverted Triangle Shapes:

Want to know more about dressing your shape? You’re in luck- I wrote a whole blog post about dressing inverted triangles!

Rectangle shaped women have equal size chest, waist, and hip areas.
(Not sure what shape you are? Take the Quiz!)

Look for t-shirts that…

  • Are looser or semi-fitted styles.
  • Have any neckline. You’re lucky because any neckline will look great on you!
  • With hemlines that hit around your hip bones.
  • Have either short sleeves (middle of upper arm or shorter) or longer sleeves (middle of forearm or lower). This visually makes your waist seem more defined.   

Avoid t-shirts that…

  • Are really detailed on either the top or bottom. You want to have something that is equally visual on the top of the shirt and the bottom.

Top T-shirt picks for Rectangle Shapes:

Want to know more about dressing your shape? You’re in luck- I wrote a whole blog post about how to dress your best- just for Rectangles!

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How to wear a long cardigan (for every body shape & type)

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From the runway to stores like Target, the long cardigan is everywhere.

And for a good reason.

It’s comfortable, stylish, and easy to wear. The perfect layering piece, a long cardigan can go with anything from a pair of jeans to a ball gown.

And…the best part is that the long cardigan can be worn by any body type and shape! Here’s how:

Pssst. Not sure what body shape you are? Click here to take the quiz!

Apple:

Apple shaped women are wider throughout the waist than the hips and chest (here’s everything you need to know about dressing Apple body shapes).

Apples will look best with their long cardigan unbelted and open. Resist the urge to close up the cardigan as it will actually make you look taller and skinnier when you can see the rest of your outfit under the cardigan.

Extra weight around the middle? You’d never know it in this outfit!

See more apple outfit ideas on this Pinterest board.

Rectangle:

Rectangle shaped women have a straight up-and-down almost athletic shape (here’s everything you need to know about dressing Rectangle body shapes).

Rectangles tend to look better when long cardigans are wrapped and belted. This gives the illusion of volume and a waistline. It also makes the wearer appear curvier than they actually are.

See more rectangle outfit ideas on this Pinterest board.

Hourglass:

Hourglass shaped women are fuller in the chest and hips and have a smaller defined waist (here’s everything you need to know about dressing an Hourglass body shape).

A baggy cardigan can hide your curves and make you appear larger than you are. For that reason, opt for more fitted options. If you can’t find a more fitted cardigan, try adding a belt to your outfit or looking for sheer cardigans. Either option will keep you from looking like a blob.

A sheer cardigan adds interest (and warmth!) to your outfit without making you look like a sack.

See more Hourlgass outfit ideas on this Pinterest board.

Inverted Triangle:

An Inverted Triangle shaped woman has wider shoulders, a defined waist, and more narrow hips. Here is everything you need to know about dressing an Inverted Triangle body shape!

Choose a long cardigan that will draw the eye away from your shoulder area. For example, look for cardigans with: accent pockets, vertical stripes, multiple colors, or patterns.

The argyle design draws the eye up and down while the big pockets catch your attention- and distract away from the chest/shoulder area.

See more inverted triangle outfit ideas on this Pinterest board

Pear:

Pear shaped women are smaller through the chest, have a defined waist, and are fuller through the hips (psst. here is everything you need to know about dressing a Pear body shape).

The most important thing for pears to watch out for are cardigans that end at the widest part of the hips. This will make your hips/booty area appear bigger. Instead, choose a cardigan that is shorter or longer.

This cardigan makes her look long and lean while the dark belt accents her waist.

See more pear outfit ideas here.

how to wear a long cardigan as a petite woman

Special Sizes:

Plus: Choose your cardigan based on your body shape (above!) Need help finding clothes that fit your figure? Check out this post.

Tall: Long cardigans were made for you. Choose the one that works best for your body shape. Looking for clothes that are just for Tall people? You need to read this post.

Petite: Long cardigans don’t have to make you look short. Opt for a neutral color cardigan that is different than the color of the rest of your outfit underneath to make you appear taller (like the picture below!) Not sure where to find petite sized cardigans? Check out this blog post.

A dark shirt and jeans makes this woman look taller than she probably is!

What’s your favorite way to wear a cardigan?

Let me know in the comments below!

xoxo, Leslie

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Holiday Outfit Ideas for Every Body Shape

FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinHoliday outfit ideas for every body shape

There’s something about clothing this time of year that is just…entrancing. I’m not sure if it’s the glitter and shine or the extra details (bows, lace, and sequins Oh my!) that suck us in or the general fury of spending money.

 

Not only do you have so many more shiny and pretty clothes to buy this time of year, but you actually have a reason to wear them: holiday parties. Whether it’s a work party, Christmas or Channukah party, or New Year’s Party- you have a legit excuse to go shopping.

 

Between all the glittery options and the valid reasons to sport said glittery options, we sometimes get a little out of control and don’t make the best decisions. Have you ever bought a dress that ‘was totally not you’ just because you felt like you needed to wear sequins on New Years? Or what about that red shiny sweater you wore once before you realized you don’t even look good in red?

 

It happens to the best of us. My goal this year is that it doesn’t happen to you- at least when it comes to wearing clothes that look good on your body shape.

 

I’m going to go through the top 5 body shapes (not sure which one you are? Take the quiz here) and give you Holiday outfit ideas that will not only look great on you but also look good long after the Holiday buzz has worn off.

 

Enjoy.

 

Pear:

Pears have wider bottom halves (hips and booty), a defined waist, and a smaller top half. The best outfits and accessories for pears accentuate their top halves. That means statement jewelry and eye-catching tops are your best friends.

 

Want to know more about dressing pear shapes? Read this whole blog post dedicated to helping pears get dressed and check out our latest e-book that is full of pear outfit ideas!

 

 

Pear Holiday Dress

 

Pear Holiday outfit ideas

 

Rectangle

Rectangles usually have equal width hips, waist, and shoulders resulting in a straight up and down athletic look. Rectangle shapes are wonderful for maximalists because they can get away with things like full skirts, puffy sleeves, and glitter galore.

 

Want to know more about dressing rectangle shapes? Read this whole blog post about it!

 

 

Rectangle Holiday dress

 

Rectangle holiday outfit ideas

 

Hourglass

Hourglass shapes have a smaller, defined waist and equal width shoulders and hips. Because they are so amazingly curvy, they need to stay away from loose, sack styles. This is a great time to show off those curves, so choose more bodycon silhouettes.

 

Want to know more about dressing hourglass shapes? Read this whole blog post about it!

 

Hourglass holiday dress

 

Hourglass holiday outfit ideas

 

 

Holiday outfit ideas for women

 

Inverted Triangle

Inverted triangles have wider shoulders and more narrow hips and waist. The best outfits for inverted triangles are the ones that bring all the attention to their bottom halves. Full skirts, fun pants, and statement shoes are all great options.

 

Want to know more about dressing inverted triangle shapes? Read this whole blog post about it!

 

 

Inverted Triangle Holiday Outfit

 

Inverted triangle holiday ouftit ideas

 

 

Apple

Apples usually have undefined waists that are wider than their hips and shoulders. Apples usually have killer legs and a great decolletage. For these reasons, they’ll want to find clothing and accessories that accent their legs and neck area rather than their middle. Apples usually look really great in wrap blouses and dresses.

 

Want to know more about dressing apple shapes? Read this whole blog post about it!

 

 

Apple Holiday Dress

 

Apple holiday outfit ideas

 

Did you know? I have a full e-course that is dedicated to helping you figure out exactly what looks great on you! It’s called the Ultimate #STYLE Course, and you might just want to add this to your Holiday Gift List. More info here.

 

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The Best Swimsuits for Every Body Shape (2018)

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To celebrate the official start of summer, I want to talk swimsuits.

Did I hear a groan? What’s that? You don’t LIKE shopping for swimsuits?

That’s weird. Just kidding.

It’s not weird at all. In fact, most women I talk to absolutely dread bathing suit season. They either don’t like their bodies, or they have trouble finding swimwear that fits. (Sound familiar?)

Well, fear not, because I want to help make swimwear season a little less horrible for you.

Below, are my top swimwear and cover-up suggestions for each body shape. If you’re not sure what body shape you are, take this easy quiz.

Enjoy! (and happy swimming!)


 

 

Pear

If you’re a pear, look for bathing suits that are basic (aka: boring) on the bottom and fun up top. This draws the eyes away from your bottom half and up to your top half, making it look larger (which is a good thing).

Off the shoulder tops, ruffles, and lace up styles are all really popular this summer. Look for ones that have those features around the bust or shoulder area (like the swim suits below!) High cut legs are also really in this year and will look amazing on you. Don’t be afraid to try them.

If you’re self conscious about showing off your hips/butt in a swimsuit, try adding a neutral colored sarong (like the first picture) to your outfit. This will help cover your butt and hips without making you look short and stumpy (which is what those skirt bathing suits do when the skirt hits across the widest part of your hips)

Main Idea: 

Wear this…ruffle sleeves, embellished necklines, and off the shoulder tops with neutral bottoms.

Not that…Hipster bikini bottoms and lots of detail around the hips/butt. Avoid skirts/shorts/bottoms that hit across the widest part of your hips. 

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Inverted Triangle

 

If you’re an inverted triangle shape, look for bathing suits that are basic, or more boring, up top and have more details around the hips and waist. This visually makes your hips look bigger (in a good way!) and draws attention away from your broad shoulders.

As seen below, pom-poms, ruffles, and high waisted swimsuits are all in this year. Choose swimwear with ruffles around the hips (like the last pic), or other similar detailing like peplums, horizontal stripes (like the second pic), or bright colors.

Your best cover up is going to be a fun sarong. Go crazy with colors and textures, like in the one below, or keep it simple with one bold hue. Whichever you decide, make sure it makes a statement!


Main Idea: Wear this…ruffles, patterns, skirts, and horizontal lines on the bottom part of your suit while keeping the top half boring. Usually triangle style tops are better than bandeau. 

Not that…off the shoulder tops and anything embellished around the upper body!

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Hourglass

Hourglasses are the ones who never complain about swimsuit shopping, because they look good in pretty much any swimsuit.

If you like showing off your curves, keep your swimsuit simple like the second picture. If you like a more modest look, go for a retro looking one piece.

Your best cover ups are going to be ones that come in at the waist. That means that they either have elastic, a tie, or a drawstring around the waist. Long robes with ties (shown below) will look especially good.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…balanced swimwear that doesn’t have too much going on up top or on the bottom. 

Not that……..(there literally isn’t anything! You’ll look great in pretty much everything)

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.

Rectangle

If you’re a rectangle, you’ll want to look for swimwear that makes you look curvier than you are. You can do this a couple ways: 1) by adding volume to your hips and bust, 2) by accentuating your waist, or 3) both 1 and 2.

The model in the middle picture below (and under the apple example) are both rectangles. Look for one pieces that accentuate your waist, like this tie waist option below. Look for bikinis that have an equal amount of visual interest (ruffles, ties, colors, etc.) on the top as on the bottom, like the second picture below. Any sort of seaming or tailoring that draws the eye into your waist and back out is also good (you can see examples of this under the apple swimsuits).

You can wear almost any cover, so why not go dramatic? The Tory Burch caftan below was made for your body.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…suits with fun trim, accented waists, and princess seam details. Hipster bottoms and bandeau tops work well for you. 

Not that…solid, athletic suits will make you look like a child, or pro swimmer.  

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Apple

Similar to the rectangle, apples should focus on swimwear that makes them appear to have a defined waist.

Seaming and pattern changes, like the one piece below look best on you. If you are looking for a one piece, make sure that the top and bottom have equal amounts of visual interest. The bikini below has a color, style, and button details that reflect evenly (for the most part) on the top as on the bottom. The way the buttons slop inward to the waist on the bottom and are on the middle of the top, visually create the illusion of a waist.

Elastic waist coverups are a good option for apples, as you can adjust the elastic to wherever you want your ‘waist’ to appear.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…suits with princess seams, pattern changes (like the Tory Burch above) and color blocking. 

Not that…muumuu bathing suits that make you look like a sack that is much bigger than you actually are. 

 

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.

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How to dress a RECTANGLE shape

FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinRectangle shaped bodies have been called many other things over the years including ‘athletic shaped’ and ‘boy body shaped’. I don’t have a problem with the athletic shape thing, but boy body??? What is the difference between the body of a boy and a girl (literally, pre-pubescent they look pretty much the same). Although, to be fair, I also wouldn’t want to have a ‘girl shaped body’. That’s weird. So, let’s just call it rectangle and stick with that.

*rant over*

Now it’s time for me to tell you how great a rectangle body is. Did I just see an eye roll? Pull yourself together woman, I’m serious. You know why? Because rectangles can pretty much wear anything.

Let me explain. Rectangles are usually thinner and straight up and down. In other words, there are less curves to deal with. You know want that results in? The perfect frame to showcase clothing.

Have you ever wondered why 99.9% runway models (except Naomi Campbell who is an inverted triangle) are rectangles? It’s because it’s easier to put clothes on a rectangle than any other body shape. They look good in pretty much anything.

You know that friend who can wear a sack and look great? She’s probably a rectangle. Or has a ton of self confidence (which outranks any fashion rule btw).

 

Keep reading to find out:

  • What a Rectangle shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity Rectangle examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF

You’re a Rectangle If…

You know you’re a Rectangle shape because you have these two attributes:

  1. Your bust and hips are pretty much equal widths
  2. Your waist is pretty much the same width as your bust/hips (or within an inch or two)

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Rectangles:

Celebrity rectangles are all over the place because they are so easy to dress.

 

See the source image

You see where Gwyneth Paltrow’s dress starts to flare out? Well, her body just keeps going straight down from there. The flared dress gives the illusion of a waist (by making her hips more pronounced). 

 

See the source image

Natalie Portman uses color blocking to give the illusion of a defined waist. 

 

See the source imageSee the source image

You thought Kate had the perfect hourglass shape? Not so! It’s all a trick. See the picture on the right? She didn’t just grow curves once she became royal (she just got a stylist). 

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here.

Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.

The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.

In the image below, you can see that her hips and chest fill out the hourglass, but the waist area does not come in. This means that we have to use an optical illusion to give her a defined waist. I call this: creating a fake waist.

Rectangles, you can get away with pretty much anything, sartorially speaking. With that said, your best looking and most attractive outfits are going to include the optical illusion of a waist.

Keep reading to discover how to create a fake waist.

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: we need to equally add volume to the top and bottom of the body to make the waist seem smaller (and more defined). (Psst. click here to discover the top 20 items every rectangle needs in their closet)

Here are several other cheats (aka: sneaky ways) to defining a waist:

  • Use color. Just make sure the color change happens at your fake waist (like the picture of Natalie Portman above).
  • Use gathering or ruching. This can make it look like you have a waist.
  • Use seaming. Seaming is where two pieces of fabric come together. Creative seaming (like in the last jacket shown) can make you look more curvy than you are.
  • Use a belt. Sometimes it helps to visually draw a line across your fake waist (the smallest part of your torso, remember??) using a belt.

Here is what to wear (and how to fake a waist), when it comes to different types of clothing:

    • Tops/Blouses: Choose shirts that make your top half seem bigger (thus making your waist smaller). You don’t necessarily need volume to do this. You can simply choose a boatneck, square, or wide V-neck neckline.

    • Blazers/Jackets: You can wear any jacket that you want as long as 1) your waist is defined in some manner and 2) any volume on the top of the jacket (puffy sleeves) is evened out at the bottom of the jacket (peplum) or with the pant/skirt (flowy skirt) choice.

    • Skirts: Just like the tops, you don’t want the skirt to overpower the outfit. The skirt should even out what’s going on up top. High waisted and A-line skirts are your best choice.

    • Pants: Keep your proportions equal. Bigger top means bigger pants…just don’t forget to wear a belt or make sure the shirt/pants are fitted at the waist. Any rise of pants works for you as long as you don’t neglect the waist!

    • Dresses: When looking for dresses, it’s all about the middle detail around your ‘fake waist’ (surprise, surprise, right???) Color blocked dresses, ruched (gathered) waist dresses, fit and flare dresses, and wrap dresses are all perfect for your shape.

  • Accessories: Belts are your friends. A good rule of thumb, is to choose belts that are compatible with your size. If you are a bigger build, choose wider belts. If you’re a smaller build, choose skinnier belts. This keeps the belt from overwhelming or underwhelming you. You can wear any jewelry that you want. Woohoo!
  • Purses: Take your pick of purses except for cross body bags.

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Anything baggy where your waist isn’t accentuated. (Like the baggy shirt and low rise skirt shown below)
  • Blazers/Jackets: Avoid jackets and blazers, like traditional pea coats, that are straight up and down with no seams or detailing around the waist. They will make you look like boxes. (Exception: if the boxy jackets end above your waist or if you belt them)
  • Skirts: Avoid skirts that are much more voluminous than your top. (Think: tank top with peasant skirt)
  • Pants: None! Go crazy!
  • Dresses: Almost nothing.
  • Accessories: Avoid belts that don’t fit your body size!
  • Purses: Cross body bags that cut your body in half and take away from your fake waist are bad.

Sample Rectangle Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for a Rectangle with classic style.

You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly!

Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!

Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities.

Monday: (work) Dress + blazer + belt (over blazer at waist) + heels.

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) Button up shirt (tucked in) + skirt + earrings + black flats.

Wednesday: (work) Black bodysuit + crème pants + blazer + heels.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) Dress + belt + black flats.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) Black bodysuit + skirt + jacket + earrings + heels. Take off jacket for date.

Saturday: (playground with kids) White top (tucked in) + black pants + Soludos mules.

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) Button up shirt (untucked) + crème pants + belt (over shirt at waist) + black flats.

 

Want to know the basics EVERY woman should have in their wardrobe (plus outfit ideas on how to put them together?) Just click here to find out!

 

The Big Take-Away:

Just because you don’t have a defined waist, doesn’t mean it should stop you from being a complete bad a$$ (I mean, did you see my celebrity rectangles above!?!?!) Focus on creating that fake waist and then accent the heck out of it! 

Or…ignore all the rules and go fashionista on the world (Natalie Portman is really good at that if you need examples) 😉

And most, importantly, you’re gorgeous. Never forget that. 

xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

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What’s your body shape? Take our quiz!

FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinYou may have heard someone say (not going to lie, it was probably me) how important it is to dress for your body shape…but what exactly does that mean?

Although all bodies are unique, they are still human bodies and have the same basic features…hips, bust, waist, etc.  The size of your hips, bust, waist, and shoulders end up making a shape and are thus classified into different categories with the intention of helping you dress great based on the size of your features.

There is no one fashion god (sorry Anna Wintour) who decides what the names of these shapes are, so you may see different ‘shape’ names across the internet. Don’t freak out. I’ll help you figure out what conventional shape you fall into AND how to dress for your body regardless of the official shape you are.

Before you take the quiz, though, I want to introduce the 5 body shapes that are most common: pear, inverted triangle, hourglass, rectangle, and apple.

Ready to get started?

I made this really easy quiz. It will help you decide which of the 5 most common shapes you identify with. Under the quiz, I’ll tell you my little secret to dressing for whatever body shape you have, and also provide links so you can read more about your specific shape. 🙂


Yay! Hopefully you took the quiz and know exactly what body shape you are.

But what if you don’t? What if you don’t feel the answer is accurate?

Fear not! Not falling into one of these 5 categories isn’t the end of the world.

Here’s my little secret to looking amazing no matter what shape you have (even if I don’t have a name for it!) 

You want to dress in a way that makes you look like an hourglass.

That’s it. That’s my little secret.

First, you’re probably wondering…why an hourglass?? That’s a reasonable question, and the answer goes all the way back to our Neanderthal ancestors.

Back when we were cave men and women, we had two jobs: stay alive and procreate. The people best suited to stay alive were physically fit and healthy, while those more likely to procreate had good features for childbearing and rearing. Now, think back to the hourglass figure. It has a fuller bust (milk for babies!), defined waist (all that exercise running from tigers!), and wider hips (great for pushing out kids!) So, the things that kept us alive many era ago are still ingrained in our subconscious and thus, we are attracted to people with hourglass bodies because they are ‘more likely’ to be able to stay alive and procreate. It sounds really crass, but that’s what we’re working with. That, and the fact that people like symmetry, so a full top that balances out a full bottom is visually pleasing.

With that said, you can use two simple fashion tricks to help you look more like an hourglass:

Trick 1: Draw attention to the parts of your body that DON’T fit the hourglass mold.

Trick 2: Downplay parts of your body that DO fit the hourglass mold. 

I know what you’re thinking. That sounds counterintuitive. But stay with me here. Look at the person below as an example.

This woman has wide hips and a smaller top half (she’s a pear!) Her bottom half already fits the hourglass shape, as does her waist. The part that doesn’t fit is her top half. So, using the two tricks above, we need to downplay her hips and waist and draw more attention to her top half. Drawing more attention to her top half VISUALLY makes it look BIGGER, thus completing the top part of the hourglass. Downplaying her hips and waist doesn’t necessarily make them look smaller as much as helps the top half look bigger.

I know that sounds confusing, but we do this ALL the time when getting dressed and don’t even think about it. If you have big hips, you may choose to wear a bright colored shirt and dark pants. That is downplaying your bottom half and bringing the attention to your top half. See…I told you it wasn’t that hard.

Here are a few ways to ‘draw attention to’ and ‘downplay’:

Draw attention to an area with: stripes, prints, patterns, color, accessories, jewelry, detailed clothing, etc. (In the example above, we use a shirt with a bright pink horizontal stripe)

Downplay an area by wearing: darker colors, simple clothing, less contrasting items, etc. (In the example above, we used a dark, neutral color skirt)

For each shape, I’ve gone into way more detail (including lots of pictures and outfit ideas!) about how you can look like an hourglass. Check out the links below to see more examples of what it looks like to use these two tricks of downplaying and drawing attention!

How to dress a PEAR shape

How to dress a RECTANGLE shape

How to dress an HOURGLASS shape

How to dress an INVERTED TRIANGLE shape 

How to dress an APPLE shape

 

Happy Styling!

xoxo, Leslie

 

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