We’ve all got areas we would like to hide, Alarna Hope, Editorial Stylist and Founder of That Effortless Bitch shares how you can camouflage your problem areas without losing your body shape under all your layers.
When I was a teenager starting to get some shape, all I wanted to do was cover myself up. How was it that I was still an AA cup, but my hips were getting wider? Where did these stretch marks come from? Why were my thighs touching when I walk? I used to have a really unhealthy relationship with my body, and despite loving clothing growing up, I used to wear oversized tunics and knits in the hopes that no one would notice my shape. Luckily, training for my profession as a stylist helped me to get out of this bad habit, but I still see many adults making the same mistakes I did.
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Many years and experiences later, I know that the old long-top over the bum trick doesn’t work. It’s kind of like sticking a lampshade on your head and hoping no one will see you hiding in the lounge room. As a teenager, I dressed like a tent, and tenting doesn’t work when it comes to personal style.
What I often see with new clients who are struggling to adapt to their bodies after a baby, during weight fluctuation or even during menopause is that they cover up their figure so much that they lose their shape completely. Our shape is what makes us fabulous, whether we’ve got a big curvy backside, slim legs, a small waist, broad shoulders or short torsos – we’ve all got something unique that can look fantastic if dressed strategically and this week that’s what I’m here to teach you to do.
IF YOU HAVE A BIGGER TOOSH:
Personally, I love my backside; sure it takes up extra room on the couch, but it’s one of the curvier areas of my body, and I like to embrace it. If however, you would prefer to disguise it and put your focus on another area of your body, wearing a darker colour or a smaller print on your lower half will do the trick.
IF YOU HAVE NO TOOSH:
Opposite to the curvy toosh is the flat toosh, but there are ways to make it look a little plumper. Choose mid-rise pants with high back pockets. Pockets that sit on the higher part of your backside will give you a lift where you need it. Extra pocket details like curved stitching, pocket flaps or embellishments will also add a little extra cushion. Try wearing lighter colours on your bottom half if you’re wearing a skirt or a figure-hugging pair of pants.
IF YOU DISLIKE YOUR ARMS:
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If your arms the-the cause of your sweating summer problems, don’t fear. You don’t always have to cover up completely. Avoid cap sleeves as they tend to end right where your upper arm curves out. If you’re working a sleeve, make it three-quarter length. If it’s too hot, opt for a top with thick straps, wear a lightweight kimono over the top or wear something that takes the attention away from your arms, hello statement heels!
IF YOU WANT TO COVER YOUR STOMACH:
If you feel self-conscious about your mid-section, it’s time to disguise it with some strategic layering. Find yourself a pair of high-rise jeans in a medium to dark blue, next add a top that skims your figure and has an open neckline or a v-neck. Half-tuck your top into your pants, keeping the tuck loose and in line with your nipple. Add a lightweight jacket that ends past where your top is tucked in. Doing this breaks up your proportions and makes your legs look longer, and makes your legs the focal point of your outfit.
IF YOU WANT TO SLIM YOUR LEGS:
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The above trick definitely works for slimming the legs and the hips, remember to choose a dark colour for your bottom half and a lighter colour for the top. If you’re wearing a skirt, aim for it to fit your high waist, this will make your legs look longer and slimmer – hooray!
IF YOU WANT TO APPEAR TALLER:
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I love a nude shoe and a cropped pant combo, worn in a flat shoe style or a heel, the nude shoe makes your legs miles longer. A cropped jean or pant will show a little more ankle, making it appear like there’s much more leg happening down there. An extra tip for you is to dress monochromatically. Pick a colour, like soft blue for example and wear it all over in different shades, it makes your figure look longer and more fluid – did I mention it’s super chic?
IF YOU WANT TO APPEAR SHORTER:
If height has always been a problem for you, you don’t always have to wear flat shoes, instead, pick statement shoes and pair them with brighter skirts and pants. This will bring more attention to your lower half, making you appear shorter.
IF YOU WANT TO DOWNSIZE YOUR BUST:
A well-fitting bra is the first step to downsizing the appearance of your bust, ensuring you’ve got the right size on will lift your ladies and make your waist longer and leaner. Next, you’ll want to wear a darker tone on top, compared to the tone down the bottom and if you’re wearing a jacket, pick a contrasting colour to your top to bring your shape in. Try to avoid heavy collars and lapels.
IF YOU WANT TO MAKE YOUR BUST APPEAR LARGER:
Being a lifelong A cup, I can tell you that wearing dark colours on your lower half and lighter on the top helps, but going one step further and adding an accessory on your chest makes it appear even more shapely. You can also play around with structured shoulders, larger collars, frills and chest details on tops to make this area appear bigger.
Now you’re all shaped up, remember to not only practice strategically dressing to cover your problem areas but don’t forget to show off those areas you love. Pick your favourite colours, wear those fabulous jewels and show off that figure!
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