Dressing Your Body Type

Believe it or not, summer is just around the corner. That means the time to shop for a new summer wardrobe is here. Dress to impress by following a few simple rules to flatter your figure.

Pear Shape

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If you have a well-defined waist but your hips are wider than your bust-line, you fall into the pear-shaped category. The goal for dressing this body type is finding clothes that balance out the bottom and top halves by making you appear slimmer through the hips.

Short sleeves or shoulder pads can help balance out your top, while low-rise, straight-legged pants slim the bottom. Choose skirts that are straight or slightly flared, but avoid anything that hugs the hips too closely. Wearing a chunky necklace draws attention away from your bottom half.

Don't wear skirts or pants that are tapered at the bottom and stay away from skirts, dresses or belts that add additional bulk to your bottom half.

Apple Shape

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If you are round through the middle and narrower in the legs, you have an apple-shaped body. Dress to bring attention away from your midsection to your face, and choose colors, patterns, and shapes that lengthen your body.

Wearing the same color on top and bottom will give the illusion of a longer body. For tops, choose lower necklines and don't tuck in shirts. Fabrics that flow rather than cling to the midsection are generally more flattering, and skirts should either be straight or slightly flared.

Hour-Glass Shape

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If your hips and bust are proportioned and you have a well-defined waist, you fall into the hour-glass category. The goal here is to wear clothing that defines your waist without adding bulk to the top or bottom.

Wear soft, clingy fabrics that are fitted but not too tight. Belts that cinch at the waist are perfect for defining your figure. Stay away from baggy styles that don't show off your waist, which may make you look heavy or boxy. Avoid high necklines unless you have a small bust line, as they make your top half look disproportionately larger than your hips.

Of course, no matter what your body shape, wear clothes that you feel happy and comfortable in. Remember, confidence is half the battle!