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Article: How to Dress for Your Body Shape

How to Dress for Your Body Shape
Fashion Fix

How to Dress for Your Body Shape


Dresses for your body shape

Whether you're curvy like Adele, athletic aka Cameron Diaz, or hourglass shaped like Scarlett Johansson, making the most of your body shape is easy with some simple style rules.

Shapewear 2

Some of Team LBD's favourite celebrity apples include Drew Barrymore and Kimberley Walsh.

Shapewear 3


An A-line dress for abstract print to draw attention away from the middle area.Or try the Raishma shift embroidered dress for ultimate chic, we're loving the attention to detail of the embellished sleeves and hemline. Or try this  crochet lace shift dress - it's pretty and has detail in the fabric.

  • Flaunt your best bits and draw attention away from your tummy a short dress will accentuate those pins whilst a scoop or V-neck will draw the eyes upwards away from your middle.

  • Empire line dresses are great for flattering apple shapes as they draw a line underneath the bust, skimming over wider waists and lengthening the body.

  • Tunic dresses are another superb choice for apples; their structured shape covers up an undefined middle whilst high hemlines and sleeveless styles are great for showing off lithe limbs.

  • Dresses with a colour block centre and black edges are a great choice for skimming inches off your middle.

  • Adding a belt can transform apple to apple core in an instant or choose dresses with a fuller skirt to create the illusion of a smaller waistline.


Pleated or tiered skirts will add unwanted inches whilst short, boxy jackets will give your waistline unnecessary attention. Bandeau styles are a no-no for apples as they will broaden your shoulders. And avoid flared maxi dresses because you don't want to hide your best assets!

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Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna and Beyonce are all super-sexy pears.


This embellished dress is perfect for evening wear glamour for pear shaped women.

Or try the Alesha `Dixon Reef Dress to show off your slender top half in a strapless or spaghetti strap black dress.

  • A strapless midi dress with a flared skirt is a wise choice it will add focus to your top half and take emphasise away from your lower half.

  • Large collars, lapels and sleeves with eye-catching detail also draw attention to your top half, as will accessorising with statement necklaces, earrings and neck scarves.

  • Prom dresses are great for showing off a tiny waist and covering up wider hips.

  • Colour block and wear black or dark colours on your bottom half to create the illusion of narrower hips, whilst saving colour for your top half.

avoid pear

Avoid side pockets and tight-fitting skirts, which will add unwanted inches to your hips and bottom.

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Hourglass shapes - Marilyn Monroe, Scarlett Johansson


wear hour

  • Take inspiration from the 1950s (think cult TV show Mad Men) with figure-hugging frocks and pretty tea dresses to show-off your womanly curves.

  • Any fitted dress or skirt suits an hourglass figure, but the pencil skirt flatters the most. Emphasise your tiny waist by adding a belt to dresses.

  • Another Team LBD favourite is the wrap dress, which will accentuate your curves by pulling you in at the middle.

avoid hour

Shop for hourglass styles


Curvy shapes - Adele, Jennifer Hudson



A sequinned embroidered maxi dress which is sheer is perfect for those curves. Or try a wrap dress, which highlights those hourglass proportions beautifully.

  • 50s and 60s inspired silhouettes will cinch in your waist and show off those curves.

  • Maxi dresses are great for creating the illusion of height and skimming off inches. Choose a black dress for its super-slimming effect.

  • Look for details such as an embellished neckline to draw attention upwards, away from your middle and up to your cleavage. Or try out the sports luxe trend with full-length scuba zips to elongate your body.

  • Body control underwear is amazing at creating a slimmer silhouette. Draw emphasis to your waist with a belt.

  • Show a hint of skin without revealing your modesty with detailing like sheer lace sleeves, which are great for concealing upper arms.

avoid ccurbes

  • Horizontal stripes add the illusion of width whilst double-breasted jackets do not flatter a fuller-figure, they simply over-emphasise the bust.

  • ¬†

Shop for curvy shapes

line However, if you want to create some feminine curves and add definition to a boyish waist, here's what to wear.





Maxi, mini, fitted, you'll suit all dress styles.

  • A-line skirts are great for creating curves and balancing out broad shoulders, whilst a peplum dress will add shape to a slender frame.

  • Create the illusion of a bigger bust with a cowl neckline, or accessorise with chunky, statement necklaces for a similar effect. You can refine broad shoulders with a scoop or v neckline.

avoid boy


Shop for boyish bodyshapes



Here's the Team LBD guide on clothing for petite women.


Petite women look great in fitted or semi-fitted dresses to show off their slim frame.

  • Clothing with vertical lines not necessarily stripes, this could be in the detailing - will create the illusion of height.

  • Dressing head to toe in one colour will elongate the body and choosing summer's favourite vibrant, bold patterns rather than ditsy floral print will make you seem taller too.

  • High heels are the easiest way to add stature to a petite frame. Keep it on-trend with summer's favourite wedges or heels with concealed platforms.


avoid small

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Our beautiful illustrations are by fashion illustrator Laura Hickman and were created especially for Little Black Dress. bne6

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