How to: Dress for your body type

Hello and welcome to part two of the body type series. Previously we introduced the different body types and discussed how to dress the Apple body type. We’ll go into more detail about the other body types but before we dive into the good stuff let’s remind ourselves of some caveats we mentioned in our previous article.

NUMBER ONE: the body types are on a spectrum. If you have the privilege of being born a female, then you like myself know how much your body has changed over the years and thanks to biology we’re in for some more changes. Thus, it is likely that you’ll change from one body type to another or even sit between two body types. Whichever is the case, your body is amazing and deserves to be dressed well.

Body Type Spectrum

NUMBER TWO: these style tips for each body type are GUIDELINES to help make better fashion choices that will have us looking our best.

Having said that, let’s look at the next body type: Pear.

Note: To find your body type, you’ll need the following measurements: shoulders, bust, waist and hips. Find out how to take these measurements here (insert the link to the previous article).

The Pear (triangle) Body Type

You are a pear if your hips ÷ shoulders or bust ≥ 1.05.

Characteristics of the body type

  • ➔  Hips are wider than shoulders
  • ➔  Small torso and bust especially compared to the lower half
  • ➔  Defined waist
  • ➔  Full thighs and hips
  • ➔  Likely to gain weight first around the lower tummy and upper thighs
  • ➔  Full/ muscular legs What clothes to avoid This body type tends to be bottom heavy so you may want to skirt around clothes that overemphasise your bottom half and make you look disproportionate. Here are some items to be wary of whilst dressing this body type.

Very baggy/loose-fitting pants e.g., harem pants. These types of clothing can make you look too bottom heavy. When it comes to loose-fitting pants for this body type, try wearing wide- leg pants that are synched at the waist and skim over your curves.

Bottoms with busy prints or heavy detail e.g., horizontal stripes, bell-bottom pants. Try keeping the detail to further down the legs e.g., around the calf or ankles.

Also, opt for bottoms with vertical stripes as these elongate the silhouette and redirect attention from the hips and thighs.

Unstructured tops/jackets that fall past the hips. Instead, opt for structured jackets that stop mid-thigh and tops which stop just above the hips.

Wardrobe must-haves

Note: fitted clothing with a structured top half suits this body type best as it creates a balance between the top and the bottom halves of the body. Also, clothing made from stretchy fabric will follow the natural line of this body type and will create a visually appealing look.

➔ Cropped tops/jackets/sweaters

➔ Statement tops

➔ Bodycon dresses

➔ Blazer dresses

➔ Full/flared skirts that stop mid-thigh or just before the knee.

Key style tips

Show off your curves. If you’ve got it flaunt it. No seriously, flaunt it. Your hips being one of your prominent features means you may not always have to do much to pull an outfit together. Wearing pieces that naturally accentuate your figure such as X-line and wrap dresses can make styling this figure easy.

Wear bright colours and prints on the upper body. As your bottom half is likely to draw attention without you doing much, you can explore different prints and colours on top.

Draw attention to shoulders and bust. By wearing statement tops/ dresses with dramatic sleeves to create visual proportion. Off-shoulder, cowl and square necklines work well with this body type.

Keep it simple at the bottom. Choose bottoms with solid colours made from light fabric and do the opposite for the top. This balances out the silhouette and is one of the easiest ways to style this body type.

So that’s all for the pear body type. What did you think of these tips? If you lean towards this body type which clothes, are you thinking of restyling? Not pear-shaped? Don’t worry there’s still more to come. The next body type we’ll explore is the inverted triangle. Again, thank you for making it to the end of the article. See you soon 😊



It’s Not the What, It’s the How

Views and opinions expressed here solely belong to the author


How to: Dress for your body type

To build a house you must start with the right foundation. In the same way, to develop a good
personal style you must start with the right tools. Knowing your body type is one such tool.
Although People come in different shapes and sizes, there are 5 primary body types that
everyone typically falls under. These are apple, pear, inverted triangle, hourglass and rectangle.
I know the term ‘body type’ sounds quite limiting but I like to think of the body types as being on
a spectrum. For those of us that live in the real world, we know that there’s no one way that
bodies are shaped. So, these categories are just guides that can help us pick the best clothing to
flatter our wonderful bodies. Most people may sit between two types and other factors (e.g.,
genetics, hormone changes, diet, weight loss/gain) could cause us to move from one body type
to another.

Finding your body type

First, you need to take your measurements. You’ll need a measuring tape and a calculator.

➔ Shoulders: start at the tip of one shoulder and wrap the tape around the broadest point of your shoulders. You may need someone to help with this.
➔ Bust (chest): pull the measuring tape taut around your back and across the fullest part of your bust. Tip: make sure you wear a bra with good lift and support to give accurate measurements.
➔ Waist: Wrap the tape measure around the smallest part of your natural waistline (usually just above your belly button).
➔ Hips: Start at one hip and wrap the tape around the largest part of your bum.

With that being said, let’s look at the first body type: Apple.

The Apple Body Type

You are an apple if your waist ÷ shoulders and bust is ≥ 1.05.
Characteristics of the body type
➔ Broad/wider shoulders
➔ Slim hips
➔ Little definition to the waist
➔ A bit more flesh in the midsection
➔ Average to large bust
➔ Slender limbs
➔ Likely to gain weight around midsection/bust

What clothes to avoid

Now you can wear anything you want but it’s the way you wear it to suit your body that makes all the difference. Here are a few clothing items that can be tricky to wear for this body type.

➔ Cropped tops/sweaters: try wearing a high waist flared skirt to define the waistline and add balance to your figure. This also applies to when you wear bodysuits or tuck in.
➔ High-waist skinny trousers: this highlights the torso which isn’t a bad thing but if you don’t want to show off that part of your body, you can layer this with a simple blazer that stops right at your hips.

➔ Belted jackets/ coats: consider buttoning and belting the jacket at the waist as this would
elongate the figure and create balance. Note: very tight-fitting clothes highlight the torso and make the individual look more top-heavy. A tip to counteract this is to wear a simple fitted top and a bottom with hip or leg detail.

Wardrobe must-haves
Soft clothing and flowy styles suit this figure best as clothes follow the natural line of the body
whilst still creating the illusion of visual proportion.
➔ A-line & skater dresses
➔ High waist flared skirt

➔ Tops and dresses with wide and low necklines e.g., sweetheart, scoop and V necklines are very flattering for this body type
➔ Mid-rise flared trousers

Key style tips
➔ Invest in a good supportive bra. This is important especially for ladies with fuller busts as a good bra lifts the bust, reduces bulk in the torso and elongates the figure. Check out these bras.

➔ Show off your legs
➔ Try ruched dresses/tops
➔ Create balance by defining the waistline and adding volume to the bottom.
Well, that’s all for now about the apple body type. I hope these few tips have got you excited about getting dressed if you fall under this body type. If you don’t fall under this body type thank you for making it to the end and stay tuned for more tips on how to dress for your body type. In the next article, we’ll look at the pear body type.

Till next time!