How to Dress Your Plus Size Body Type
Understanding your body type is the most helpful way to improve the fit and appearance of your wardrobe. Just like your favorite pair of shoes, your clothes should fit you well, look stunning and make you feel the way you deserve.
For all intents and purposes, there are three basic body shapes used to talk about fashion. There's the pear shaped figure (upper body is smaller than lower half), athletic figure (straight, toned, square body), and apple shaped figure (upper body is larger than lower half). We all know our measurements change over a lifetime, but our basic shape is a product of bone structure that remains constant.
Dress for a Pear Shaped Figure: The pear is the most common female body type. You can call yourself a pear if your upper body is noticeably smaller than your lower body. If you were to gain five pounds, four of them would go to your hips and thighs. You may have a long or slender neck, sloping or narrow shoulders, narrow back, small to medium bust, defined waist or full calves. You definitely have very curvy hips, thighs and seat. As a pear you should always emphasize your face, neck, bust, waist and arms. You want to bring the eye up and broaden the shoulder line, which can be done by wearing wide neck colorful tops. Your upper body is your best asset, so wear semi-fitted and tailored plus size tops. Necklines like cowl necks and square necklines will help broaden your shoulders. You want to maintain focus above the waist so use flowing comfortable bottoms to elongate your lower half. Straight skirts are your friend and Maxi dresses look amazing on pear shapes.
Dress for an Athletic Shape: The women with the athletic body types have a straight, well-defined, and toned figure. They tend to have broad shoulders, toned arms, toned/flat stomach, square hips, and not much curve to them at all. Athletic shapes will have square silhouettes, no matter what their height, and will have a lower ratio of fat to muscle than body types like the apple or pear. With this type of figure you have to create an illusion of curves by wearing certain types of silhouettes and belts definitely help with that. Try wearing flowy plus size tops with sweet details like ruffles or lace that can enhance the bust line, or soften the shoulders. Cinch up a flowy top or dress with a trendy belt to add a waistline. Choose a tulip or bubble style skirt or dress to play up your hips and toned thighs. If your hips are on the wider side choose a skirt or dress that has details along the hemline that will balance your curves and draw the eyes to another area.
Dress for an Apple Shape: The apple seems to be the more challenging body type of the three to dress. It also is one of the easiest body types to camouflaging your problem areas. Apples generally will have fuller breasts with a wide back, slim arms while your shoulders could be wide, slim hips and a trim backside, and they generally gain weight in the midsection. Basically if you are an apple your upper body is larger than your lower half. As an apple having slim arms and legs, can be used to your advantage. You can look slimmer and more shapely when fitted with the proper figure flattering silhouette. For tops try to pick styles with an empire waist that begins under the bust to draw attention away from the stomach. Also, plus size tops with a deep v-neck are great on apples and work to keep the eyes moving upward. Because apples are more top heavy you want to choose plus size dresses or skirts with a fuller silhouette and try for styles that come up to your natural waistline to hide a larger stomach.
- When dressing your plus size shape be sure to flaunt your assets and play up your curves.
- The ideal garment should look great, create an overall balanced silhouette, and the fit should be as naturally flattering to your figure as possible.
- Some cuts might look great on the hanger, but if they just don't do it for your body type they might as well be drawer liners.
- Finding flattering pieces for your body type can make a huge difference, so use these tools wisely in order to create a fabulous figure flattering wardrobe.