Debora Sulca

Debora Sulca

The Complete Guide On How To Dress For Your Body Type

Learn styling tips that will make the most of your best assets.



Nowadays online shopping has become a true necessity and we have learned over the last three months of staying at home during Corona Virus that selecting the right clothing pieces is an art to be mastered. Especially when choosing your essential clothing items. As practical and convenient as shopping online may be, it can also generate a roller coaster of emotions and make us face unnecessary disappointment.  Why you wonder?

Because the items you visually fell in love with when browsing your favourite retailer’s e-commerce website were simply not for your body type.  Most of us are oblivious of the ‘body type basics’ which is why our expectations of sizing and fit aren’t met by our purchase.  Well, the Gaggler is here to reassure you that all is not lost, you can master online shopping and you can love your purchases when they arrive.  

As part of our online shopping series, in this post, we are going to share some precious advice on how to dress for your body type. This way, the process of choosing and adding things to your shopping cart will be easy and, dare we say, delightful.  But you need to follow these tips when making your final selections in what you add to your shopping cart. Ready?

THE BASICS ON SHOPPING FOR YOUR BODY TYPE

Being knowledgeable about your body type is a powerful tool.  By applying the ‘body type basics’ you can dress your body in a way that creates visual balance and opportunities for accessories to optimize not only the fit but the impact of your outfits. Styling your outfits not only makes you look good; it also makes you feel great and boosts you with the confidence to take on the world and knock ‘em dead.  There is power in fashion.

Some basic concepts we need to consider when dressing our body type are:

  • Your body type has nothing to do with your size. ‘Body type basics’ are all about the proportions between your bust, waist and hips. It’s the playing up and down of your proportions that is going to help create a more balanced visual of your shape.
  • Bright colours, busy patterns and details such as pockets and ruffles tend to emphasize and maximize the appearance of things, while dark colours tend to minimize it.
  • Focus on your strengths and accentuate your features. This helps make the process much more enjoyable and rewarding.  You have unique assets, it’s what you do with your assets that matters.

How to determine your body shape and how to style

Your silhouette is your body type. Traditionally, there are five body types. But, we aren’t much for following tradition so we’ve added a sixth body type especially for our petite gals out there (we won’t forget you!). There are a few tips specifically for petite women that can be beneficial.

Let’s begin by exploring your vitals first because these are important to better understand your body type.

STEP 1: Measure

Use a cloth measuring tape to get precise measurements. If you only have a metal measuring tape at home you can certainly use that but we find the cloth tape easier to use. Your measure tape should be neither too tight or loose; it should be snug to a point where you think it will slip (but it won’t) and this gives you the most accurate number. Start with your bust and move down your body with your measurements.

Bust

Here you need to measure the fullest part of your bust. It’s essential you stand straight before you do this. Place one end of the tape at the fullest part and wrap it around from under your shoulders and bring it back to where you started. Here you want to ensure you don’t have too tight a grip so the tape should just graze your chest to get the right measurement.

Waist

Standing as straight as you can, without slouching your stomach or pulling it in, start at the slimmest part of your waist above your belly button, and below the rib cage, this is your natural waistline. Wrap the tape around your stomach and bring it back to where you first started.

Hips

Here you need to measure the circumference of the fullest part of your buttocks to get the measure of your hips. Start from one side of the hip and take it around the rear towards the other hip. Bring it back to the starting point. You are best standing in front of a mirror when doing this so you know the tape is levelled throughout.

High Hips

This measurement is taken from a different place than the one above. Here you need to place the tap on the upper swell of the hip over your pelvic bone. This is not the widest point as you are taking the measurement at the top of the hip curve.

Once you have all your measurements, feed it into the Body Shape Calculator provided below to determine your body type.

Body Shape Calculator

STEP 2: Watch to learn all the tips you need

Our lovely Debora Sulca shares all her top styling tips you need to dress your body type to its best in this video.

WATCH THE VIDEO: ONLINE SHOPPING FOR YOUR BODY TYPE


STEP 3: Apply our styling tips to select the right products for you

APPLE SHAPE

This body shape has little to no definition on the waistline and tends to hold most of the weight around the bust and torso while showing thinner hips, legs and arms. People with this body type usually have broad shoulders, bigger bust line, and that’s why it feels like the weight gathers around the midriff.

Celebrities with this body shape include Drew Barrymore, Kate Winslet, Jessica Simpson and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

Our picks

Tops:

  • Boohoo exclusive puff sleeve with peplum hem and tie waist in pink
  • Bardot front tie puff sleeve top

Puff Sleeve Top With Peplum Hem And Tie Waist ON SALE

aed 42.00 Boohoo
aed56.00 25

Front Tie Puff Sleeve Top ON SALE

aed 79.00 Bardot
aed190.00 58

Dresses:

  • BAR iii by macys v neckline wrap floral maxi dress
  • H&M a-line dress
  • NA-KD wrap pleated midi dress
  • TFNC london narcise midi dress

V-Neckline Wrap Floral Maxi Dress ON SALE

aed 191.00 Bar III
aed319.00 40

A-line Dress

aed 139.00 H&M

Wrap Pleated Midi Dress ON SALE

aed 123.00 NA-KD
aed309.00 60

Narcise Midi Dress ON SALE

aed 232.00 TFNC London
aed289.00 20

Jackets:

  • Mango belt long gilet

Belt Long Gilet

aed 399.00 Mango

Skirts

  • Mango pleated floral skirt
  • Mango pleated floral skirt

Pleated Floral Skirt

aed 199.00 Mango

Pleated Floral Skirt

aed 169.00 Mango

Trousers

  • M&S collection ivy skinny jeans

Ivy Skinny Jeans

aed 140.00 M&S Collection


PEAR SHAPE

A body type with narrow shoulders and bust, with a small well-defined waistline. This type carries most of the weight in the hips and thighs. The pear-shaped body is all in the lower part of your body. Your butt and thighs are visually bigger than your upper body. So, make some space for that base, people.

Celebrities with this body shape include Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Alicia Keys and Cinthya Nixon.

Celebrates with Pear Body shape

Our picks

Tops:

  • River Island broderie sleeve top in pink
  • River Island floral long sleeved bardot top in blue

Broderie Sleeve Top In Pink ON SALE

aed 119.00 River Island
aed149.00 20

Floral Long Sleeved Bardot Top In Blue

aed 150.00 River Island

Dresses:

  • Mango puffed sleeves dress
  • Glamorous striped midi dress
  • Gap flutter midi dress

Puffed Sleeves Dress

aed 349.00 Mango

Striped Midi Dress ON SALE

aed 194 Glamorous
aed279 30

Flutter Midi Dress

aed 349.00 Gap

Jackets:

  • Mango double breasted structured blazer

Double-Breasted Structured Blazer

aed 499.00 Mango

Skirts

  • Mango pleated midi skirt

Pleated Midi Skirt

aed 199.00 Mango

Trousers

  • Mango straight high waist jeans
  • Zara flowing trousers

Straight High Waist Jeans

aed 269.00 Mango

Flowing Trousers

aed 169.00 Zara Collection


INVERTED TRIANGLE SHAPE

This body shape is the most athletic looking body type. Your strong broad shoulders and upper back are prominent and much broader than your waist and hips.

Celebrities with this body type include Cameron Diaz, Megan Markle, Naomi Campbell, Angelina Jolie.

Our picks

Tops:

  • Asos design ruffle sun top in dobby cotton in khaki

Ruffle Sun Top In Dobby Cotton In Khaki ON SALE

aed 82.00 Asos Design
aed103.00 20

Dresses:

  • Mango ruffled poplin dress
  • Gap midi shirtdress

Ruffled Poplin Dress

aed 349.00 Mango

Midi Shirtdress

aed 249.00 Gap

Cocktail dress

  • Flounce London ruffle wrap midi dress in green

Ruffle Wrap Midi Dress In Green ON SALE

aed 106.00 Flounce London
aed304.00 65

Jackets:

  • Mango Cape

Cape

aed 599.00 Mango

Skirts

  • Mango flows printed skirt
  • H&M flounced skirt

Flowy Printed Skirt ON SALE

aed 249.00 Mango
aed349.00 29

Flounced Skirt

aed 219.00 H&M

Trousers

  • Zara wide leg floral trousers

Wide-Leg Floral Trousers

aed 289.00 Zara Collection


RECTANGLE SHAPE

A lean, well-balanced figure with little to no waist definition. Your torso is straight down to the waist and hips. An elongated silhouette, opposite to the curvy type. This is a fairly straightforward body type.

Celebrities with this body shape include supermodels such as Kate Moss, Gisele Bundchen and actors like Nicole Kidman and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Our picks

Tops:

  • Zara blouse with cutwork embroidery
  • Zara ruffled poplin shirt

Blouse With Cutwork Embroidery

aed 289.00 Zara Collection

Ruffled Poplin Shirt

aed 169.00 Zara Collection

Dresses:

Day time dress

  • Setre sleevless jacket mini dress
  • H&M v-neck playsuit

Sleeveless Jacket Mini Dress ON SALE

aed 95.00 Setre
aed319.00 70

V-Neck Playsuit

aed 139.00 H&M

Cocktail dress

  • Asos design one shoulder ruffle a line mini dress

One Shoulder Ruffle A-Line Mini Dress

aed 164 Asos Design

Jackets:

  • Mango saharan leather jacket

Saharian Leather Jacket

aed 799.00 Mango

Skirts

  • Mango knot denim skirt
  • H&M cotton satin paper bag skirt
  • H&M pleated skirt

Knot Denim Skirt

aed 199.00 Mango

Cotton Satin Paper Bag Skirt

aed 169.00 H&M

Pleated Skirt

aed 99.00 H&M

Trousers

  • Zara ZW premium 80’s high waist vintage blue jeans
  • H&M paper bag cargo pants
  • Trendynol high waist paper bag jeans

ZW Premium ‘80s High Waist Vintage Blue Jeans ON SALE

aed 99.00 Zara Collection
aed199.00 50

Paper Bag Trousers

aed 139.00 H&M

High Waist Wide Leg Jeans

aed 183.00 Trendyol

HOURGLASS SHAPE

The most proportional body type. Extremely feminine with an equally broad bust and hip line, well-defined waist and well-defined curves. You know when you’re an hourglass body. Yours is a body to die for, so flaunt it and in the right way.  

Celebrities with this body type include Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson, Salma Hayek and Kim Kardashian

Our picks

Tops:

  • Zara satin blouse with knot detail

Satin Blouse With Knot Detail

aed 169.00 Zara Collection

Dresses:

  • Threadz peplum schiffli dress
  • Setre v neck cross back straps midi dress
  • Quiz bardot peplum detail dress

Peplum Schiffli Dress

aed 530.00 Threadz

V-Neck Cross-Back Straps Midi Dress ON SALE

aed 91.00 Setre
aed229.00 60

Bardot Peplum Detail Dress

aed 199.00 Quiz

Jackets:

  • Mango belt flows trench

Belt Flowy Trench

aed 349.00 Mango

Skirts

  • H&M flounced skirt
  • H&M rib knit skirt

Flounced Skirt

aed 269.00 H&M

Rib-Knit Skirt

aed 99.00 H&M

Trousers

  • Re/Done hi-rise flared leg jeans

High-Rise Flared Jeans ON SALE

aed 695.00 Re/Done
aed1739.00 60

PETITE FRAME

This is our addition to the traditional five body types as there are specific aspects of styling petite women need to be mindful of. Women who fall into the category are those who are shorter than 160cms. You can be a combination of the different body types already mentioned and also have a petite size.

Celebrities in this category include Eva Longoria, Victoria Beckham, Vanessa Hudgens and Reese Witherspoon. Your goal is to lengthen your body and make yourself appear taller.

Our picks

Tops:

  • Zara asymmetric poplin bodysuit
  • Wallis petite ruffle trim top

Asymmetric Poplin Bodysuit

aed 169.00 Zara Collection

Ruffle Trim Top

aed 100.00 Wallis

Dresses

  • H&M smocked jumpsuit
  • Wallis petite halter neck printed dress

Smocked Jumpsuit

aed 219.00 H&M

Halter Neck Printed Dress ON SALE

aed 99.00 Wallis
aed235.00 58

Jackets:

  • Miss Selfridge Petite tailored blazer

Tailored Blazer ON SALE

aed 181.00 Miss Selfridge
aed259.00 30

Skirts

  • Dorothy Perkins petite maxi skirt
  • Lost Ink Petite bow detail denim mini skirt

Maxi Skirt ON SALE

aed 57.00 Dorothy Perkins
aed95.00 40

Bow Detail Denim Skirt ON SALE

aed 59.00 Lost Ink
aed150.00 61

Trousers

  • Dorothy Perkins Petite leopard print palazzo pants

Leopard Print Palazzo Pants ON SALE

aed 71.00 Dorothy Perkins
aed155.00 54

Shoes

  • Castaner carola wedge espadrilles
  • Public Desire honey transparent strap sandal beige

Carola Wedge Espadrilles ON SALE

aed 460.00 Castaner
aed660.00 30

Honey Transparent Strap Sandal – Beige

aed 190.00 Public Desire

Being self-aware and most importantly informed about your body type can solve a lot of your shopping nightmares, particularly online. By embracing the uniqueness of your body shape, working with your individual assets and more than anything understand that there are outfits that are meant for all of us, we just need to know how and where to look! I hope by now you have gotten a better idea of how to dress for your body type.