Styling Rules are hardly generic! As a matter of fact, they should be customized to the individual; since everyone comes in different body sizes and shapes, we all need to learn what to wear and what to avoid in order to best flatter our body shape. Being compared to an object like an Hourglass or a Pear is not always flattering, especially when we carry a few extra pounds that we are trying to lose; it can be hurtful to stand in front of a mirror and look at our own body flaws trying to determine the body shape, but it is a necessary step.
Remember: no one has a "perfect" body; I have met many women who are ready to tell you exactly what they don't like about their bodies, even models and celebrities!
It is extremely important to determine our body type - first and foremost- as it helps us to visualize a certain shape; then, we chose what to wear to best suit our body shape, making therefore, the most of our body by creating an illusion of a well balanced figure.
The LOLLIPOP body shape: Big breasts, not too broad shoulders, short waist and long skinny legs.
The HOURGLASS body shape: Big shoulders and breasts, small short waist, big hips (bottom half and top half are equal in size).
The VASE body shape: It's a stretched Hourglass, more length and a flatter bottom.
NO CURVES/ ATHLETIC BODY TYPE:
The BRICK body shape: it's a masculine shape, broad shoulders, flat buttocks, no waist line, straight up and down short legs.
The COLUMN body shape: very tall, statuesque build. No curves, the top half and bottom half are equal in size.
TOP Heavy body shapes:
Don't Wear: A lot of women who have larger busts try to camouflage it with boxy blazers. A blazer hides a double-D bust, but it makes a waist and the rest of the body look much bigger as well.
BOTTOM Heavy body shapes:
Clingy skirts and tapered pants are a no-no as they highlight the hip, so trow them out of the closet; fuller leg trousers and flared skirts hide bulges. Wear any vertical pattern on the bottom half (to slim the appearance) even if it is in the seaming. Darker colors recede, so go dark on the bottom half of the body (no shiny fabrics) and wear lighter colors on top. To broaden shoulders and bring the attention up to the top half, wear big lapels, color and embellishment on the neckline, even a small shoulder pad will bring balance to a wider bottom.
Avoid side pockets, opt instead for a flat-front trouser. Super-slim jeans and pencil skirts are not a good choice. A defined waist, full skirt and strapless cut dress will bring all the focus to the smaller upper half. High-waisted, belted skirts draw attention to a slimmer waist line (hem it just above the knee), but wear them only if you have smaller breasts. Avoid Empire waist dresses that hide the waistline, choose instead a defined waist and an A-line skirt (wrap dress) to accentuate the upper half. Get a full, pleated Knee-length skirt to conceal a wide hip. Full, wide-leg gauchos drape without clinging and are a fashionable choice. Avoid tapered cut pants that emphasize a wide middle area, try a boot-cut pant and jeans to create a straight, lean line. Pleats are dangerous and so are too-high waist lines on pants, a flat front trouser on a medium rise (1 inch below belly button) is more flattering on this body shape.
Cone heels on a dressy shoe will help balance out the bottom half of the body. Straight winter boots will look fashionable and also help cover shapeless calves and ankles. Don't do ankle straps, they brake the line of the leg.
Do Wear: A wrap dress to emphasize the smallest part of the body (the upper half), allowing the bottom to A-line over the rest, camouflaging large hips and thighs. A print, especially over a darker background is slimming and will diffuse the attention on the pattern, not on the curves.
TOP and BOTTOM Heavy body types:
No CURVES body types:
Now that you know what to wear, a few last minute tid-bits of advice: Practice the art of camouflage. A well known fashion truth: darker colors minimize, while lighter or shiny ones highlight. To play down a large chest, avoid wearing bright metallic tops. Have a thicker waist? A dark brown belt is better than a white one. Horizontal stripes make anything look wider. To look taller and leaner wear monocromatic tops and bottoms (match shoes to trousers for a longer leg line). To do color safely, accessorize!
Styling Dos and Don'ts have nothing to do with size. These days, flattering choices abound for women of all shapes. Love your body, be stylish and confident, it shows that you appreciate and respect yourself.
Personal beauty, fashion trends, style, glamour like celebrities.
(most)Body shapes by: TV style gurus Trinny Woodall and Susannahtype Constantine.
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