For Women: How to Dress to Flatter Your Shape

Women come in different shapes and sizes. This is why clothes fit us differently. Knowing your particular body shape can help you decide which clothes will suit you and which ones won’t.
The four most common shapes are Apple, Pear, Hourglass and Banana. Find out your body shape and how to flatter it here.

1, Apple shape (you tend to carry weight around the midsection)

Look for:

• Wrap tops, which will give the illusion of a smaller waist
• Seaming on blouses and anything with a corset-style structure
• Pleating and gathering under the bust that draws the eye vertically down the tummy
• Deep v-necks and scoop necks
• Straight-leg rather than skinny trousers build a sense of proportion with your upper half
• Higher-waisted pants and pants with a bit of stretch; these have a girdle-like effect and hold your stomach in


• Extreme A-lines, or anything too baggy
• Busy details like pockets on tops

2, Pear shape (smaller on top, heavier on the bottom)

Look for:
• Darker colored pants that have a stiffer fabric or some stretch, which will have a slimming effect.
• Seams that run down the front of the leg, which create a leaner leg by “bisecting” it
• Fluted skirts that flare out a bit at the bottom
• Lower and thicker waistbands that help minimize the bottom
• Tops that are slightly A-line
• Low-slung tunic tops


• Partly faded denim, which will only highlight trouble areas
• Too-tight tops, which will accentuate the difference between your upper and lower halves
• Attention-grabbing pocket details on the hips and thighs

3, Hourglass shape (curvy around the bust and hips, with a smaller waistline)

Look for:

• Simple, solid shapes that will highlight your waist.
• Thick belts, pencil skirts, a little volume around the shoulder to make the waist appear even smaller
• Wrap tops, scooped and boatneck necklines. Pants should be bootcut or flares that fill well in the thigh.

Avoid: Ruffles, frills, lapels, busy patterns; any straight, boxy shapes

4, Athletic/ Boyish shape (straight up and down)

Look for:

• Details at the bust such as ruffles, wraps and rouching―these add fullness up top
• Sleeveless tops and halters; they show off toned arms
• High-waisted skirts; they should begin at the smallest part of your waist, just underneath the bust
• Bootcut pants and jeans, with a lower rise for maximum curviness

Avoid: Menswear-inspired styles, straight cuts, “boyfriend” jeans

Nobody is born with a perfect body and you can’t really dictate your genes. You can, however, make the best of the body you have by dressing it right.