Knowing what body shape you have is key when it comes to experiencing a successful shopping trip and a bit of self-styling at home! Being unsure of what suits you clothing-wise can hinder your confidence as well as encroach on your precious time in terms of trying to get it right and feeling good! This can also lead to being left stuck in a rut fairly quickly, and from my experience, this feeling is incredibly common.
During your lifetime your shape and proportions can change due to having children, weight loss or gain, sports activities, your age or a simple lifestyle change so it’s best to bear this in mind and as time goes by, continue to assess your body shape.
In this article, I am going to share some valuable styling tips for those of you that have an HOURGLASS body shape.
But first, lets determine if you have an hourglass body shape – here goes!… Your upper and lower body will be in proportion, shoulders and hips will be aligned and you will have a noticeably smaller and defined waistline. Typically you will take the same dress size top and bottom and women with this shape are fortunate as, weight gain or loss is evenly distributed on the body.
Your hourglass figure is deemed to be the perfect body shape! In fact, only 8.4% of the UK population can be proud of their hourglass figure along with the likes of Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie, Kelly Brook and Scarlett Johansson.
There are two versions of this body shape; neat and curvy – the second being the most commonly recognised.
The Neat Hourglass can be characterised by having:
- Shoulders and hips aligned
- A defined bust and waist
- A neat bottom and neat hips
The Curvy Hourglass can be characterised by having:
- Shoulders and hips aligned
- A full bust and small waist
- Rounded bottom and hips
Hourglass – General Rule of Thumb
The cut and style of clothes need to compliment your figure-of-eight hourglass shape. Mimicking and showing off every curve whilst accentuating this feminine body shape, the aim is to highlight your waistline, avoiding any boxy clothing shapes that disguise these curves.
#1 BELTS – The Hero Accessory
Wear belts that sit on your natural waistline, they will emphasise the smallest, and one of the greatest parts of your body. Be careful in choosing a width that complements your overall body proportion – if you’re a petite hourglass, opt for a narrower belt, which will best suit to your proportions, a wider belt width will suit curvier figures.
It’s time to notice coats and jackets, dresses, tops and knitwear that feature a belt!
Wear tops that stop on your natural waistline, the eye will be drawn to the slimmest part of your body and create a flattering silhouette. Avoid wearing long tops, as it’s harder to notice that neat, defined waistline, also stay away from cropped styles, as it will mess with your beautifully aligned proportions. Square necklines will also look too angular and not very balanced overall.
Also, tops with softer curved necklines will naturally flatter and accentuate your curvaceous figure along with v-necks, scoop, rounded neck and wrap tops. However, if you are conscious about showing too much cleavage then layer a camisole underneath.
Make a conscious effort to choose one or two buttoned single-breasted jackets – this will showcase your lovely defined nipped in waist and fabulous curves. Avoid double-breasted styles with overpowering detail, as this will create too much fuss and distraction but most of all you could end up looking bigger than you are.
It is true, curved lapels and necklines on jackets will flatter your natural shape. Flowing hemlines on jackets that skim your waist as well as fitted waists with little or no detail are also great styles for you to wear.
High waist trousers that have a wide leg will be one of the most flattering styles for your body shape. However, if you’re itching to try a cropped length then you had better try a cropped flare style of jeans, for example. If you’re going for full-length trousers, ensure the hem sits half way down the heel of the shoes for the perfect length.
If skirts are more your ‘thang’ then why not try a pencil skirt, wrap style or skirt with a fish tail back? These styles will sit high on your waistline and follow your natural hipline and mirror your curves.