We've all been there: the dress that makes your best friend look like Megan Fox makes you look pregnant; your roommate's cutest pair of shorts don't do your legs any favors. But before you jump to the conclusion that you need to lose ten pounds or that you should never wear a bikini ever again, consider learning to dress for your body type. Revered French couturier Hubert de Givenchy once said, “The dress must follow the body of a woman, not the body following the shape of the dress.” His advice still rings true today. Bergdorf Goodman's publicist Cannon Hodge, the voice behind one of my favorite Twitter accounts, @Bergdorfs, recently tweeted, “Identify your assets first. Then let the trends drift in.” The right silhouette can make you look like a supermodel, so dress for your body type and put your best foot forward.
What's Your Body Type?
No two bodies are exactly alike, but most of us fall into a general body type. For the purposes of this guide, see which category sounds most like your body:
Curvy: You have a fuller chest and hips. Celebrity look-alike: Amber Riley.
Busty: Your chest is wider than your hips. Celebrity look-alike: Jessica Simpson.
Pear: Your hips are wider than your chest. Celebrity look-alike: Beyoncé.
Petite: You're 5'2” or shorter. Celebrity look-alike: Mary-Kate Olsen.
Straight: Your body is narrow and athletic, without many curves. Celebrity look-alike: Cameron Diaz.
Are you pear-shaped but petite? Curvy and busty? It's okay to fit into more than one category – if that's the case, lucky you! You can probably wear a variety of styles well. Feel free to draw inspiration from more than one of the categories below. Read on to find the best shorts, bathing suits, and dresses for your body – plus one cute summer trend that was practically made for you!
Look for shorts that hit somewhere between mid-thigh and your knee. For the most flattering look, opt for shorts that skim over your curves, rather than drowning yourself in excess fabric or squeezing into a size too small. If you're not comfortable showing a lot of leg, rock cropped jeans instead. Hitting just above the ankle, they're a totally chic alternative to shorts. (Tip: If you're worried that cropped jeans will make your legs look short, balance out the cut of the jeans with your favorite pair of heels or wedges. Your legs will look miles long!)