20 Best Tips On Dressing For Your Body

Dressing for Your Body
Photo: Time Inc. Digital Studio

20 Best Tips On Dressing For Your Body

01 of 20

CROSS-BODY LINES FLATTER ALL FIGURES

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

A wrap dress flatters all figures because it draws attention to the narrowest part of you-your waist. To slim a thicker middle, place the wrap a little higher than your natural waist.

02 of 20

ALWAYS ERR ON THE SIDE OF BIG

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

When you purchase something that's too small, you don't ever feel comfortable in it. Get the larger one and have it taken in to fit perfectly.

03 of 20

FLATTER A SMALL CHEST WITH A SWEETHEART NECKLINE

Dressing for Your Body
TIme Inc. Digital Studio

Strapless tops that cut straight across the chest only flatten it. Instead, to play up your cleavage find necklines that dip down, like a sweetheart neckline.

04 of 20

MAXIMIZE YOUR ASSETS WITH DETAILS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Ruffles, pleats, ruching and other dimensional details like a wide, light-colored horizontal stripe, bring drama to your chest, and visually maximizes the area. (Bonus for small chests: The extra fabric makes it look larger.)

05 of 20

DITCH BOXY BLAZERS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

"Try a structured jacket with a soft shoulder that just hangs," says stylist Kate Young, whose clients have included Michelle Williams and Natalie Portman. "It looks elegant and won't add bulk to your frame."

06 of 20

ACCENTUATE YOUR WAIST WITH A BELT

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Even if you don't naturally nip in, give the appearance of hourglass curves by adding a belt that's the same shade as your pants or skirt. It holds you in without shouting for attention.

07 of 20

BANISH BULGE WITH UNI-SHAPERS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

One-piece support garments are the perfect secret weapon to avoid unsightly bulges from all angles. "At the top, you want a bra with molded cups; below that, a tight tube dress over your midsection that runs down to your upper thigh," says stylist Cher Coulter, who has worked with Kate Bosworth and Elizabeth Olsen.

08 of 20

THE BIGGER THE BAG, THE BETTER

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

A teensy purse is cute in theory, but your body will look larger by comparison. Check out the scale of your bag in a full-length mirror to see if you should go bigger.

09 of 20

BAN ANKLE STRAPS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

"They cut off your leg line several inches higher, making your stems seem shorter," says stylist June Ambrose, who has dressed Zoe Saldana and Mariah Carey. The same goes for espadrilles because the elaborate straps cuts off the long line of your leg that extends to your foot. Matte pumps in your skin tone are most elongating.

10 of 20

SHORT TORSOS SHOULD DITCH WIDE BELTS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

A wide belt takes up too much real estate on a short torso, making you look stunted and stocky. Instead, stick to belts one-to-two inches wide.

11 of 20

THINK LOW RISE

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

High-waisted jeans shorten your midsection. Better to lengthen your look with lower-rise bottoms that start an inch below the belly button, or try a flapper-style, drop-waist dress.

12 of 20

PUT A CAP ON CAP SLEEVES

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Cap sleeves accentuate your arm at its widest part. Likewise, bell sleeves or a very exaggerated kimono style add volume. Choose three-quarter or slightly longer bracelet cuts that reveal only your forearm and wrist, the narrowest parts of your arms.

13 of 20

SHOW OFF SOME (TOE) CLEAVAGE

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

To make ankles appear daintier, pick shoes that dip low over your toes with a deep scoop or a retro V shape to expose more square footage on the tops of your feet.

14 of 20

LENGTHEN YOUR LEGS WITH A SHIRT

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Pick a top that is shorter in the front and hangs lower in the back-it covers your rear yet makes your legs look longer in the front.

15 of 20

DARK, STRAIGHT-LEG JEANS CREATE FLATTERING LINES

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Uneven washes, bright colors, rhinestones, and busy logos bring attention to a big behind (and capris and skinny jeans can give an ice cream cone shape). Instead, dark pants with four-way stretch in straight or wide-legs draw a flattering line from your hips to your shoes.

16 of 20

A-LINE GETS AN A+ FOR PEAR SHAPES

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

A pear shape thrives with a flat-front A-line skirt that floats away below your hips and buns. "The fabric bells out and tricks the eye, so it looks like it's the skirt's shape, not yours," says stylist Cher Coulter.

17 of 20

THICK HEELS BALANCE OUT WIDE HIPS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Shoes may seem too far from hips to matter, but they do. Chunky wedges and thicker heels help balance wide hips better than skinny stilettos or kitten heels.

18 of 20

THICK CALVES NEED HIGH BOOTS

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Instead of mid-calf boots, go for a high style that stops just below the knee, or opt for ankle booties (pair them with matching tights to create a longer leg line).

19 of 20

OFF-THE-SHOULDER

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Showing your collarbone can be flattering if a dress has three-quarter-length sleeves or longer, which help hide arms' heaviest parts and expose less bulky shoulders.

20 of 20

BRING ON THE WRIST CHARM

Dressing for Your Body
Time Inc. Digital Studio

Add attention down to your slim wrists and hands with stacked bangles (thick or thin both work, or a mix) or a chunky cocktail ring.

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