Women come in many beautiful body types. If you are a woman, this post will help you embrace your body type by helping you look your best.
I will explain all types of female body, and I’ll share some fashion do’s and don’ts for each of them. I will also discuss what accessories, including shoes, look best on many female body types. When you learn to embrace your body type, you will feel more self-confident, starting you down a path where amazing things are bound to happen.
Not to mention that I’ll cover what body types are found under the system developed by William Herbert Sheldon and how he believed people perceived each body type.
Come along, let’s start on our journey to making you look even more beautiful.
Once you finish reading this post, you’ll be such a types of female body expert. Thus, you’ll know what’s best to wear depending on your body shape.
Women often see much better than men. In fact, over 12% of them have four types of cones in their retinas instead of three. Therefore, instead of seeing 1 million colors like most people, these women can see 100 million colors.
Muscles in the female body have more elastin than those found in males, and this helps them be more flexible than their male counterparts. Scientists theorize one of the reasons for this is to carry the extra weight caused by pregnancy easier.
Young women blink on average 19 times per minute while men only blink 11 times. It becomes even more noticeable after women reach menopause because then they blink even more because of higher estrogen levels.
The female brain is wired differently than the male brain. On average, it has the same number of cells as the male brain, despite being 9% smaller. There is a significant difference, however, as females have more cells in the part of their body responsible for smells. Women also remember what they are doing and need to do better than guys who recognize what they have done better than their female counterparts.
What makes women’s bodies different from men’s?
Women hear high-pitched sounds better than men, which may be because they have traditionally been the ones to take care of babies. They are also less likely to lose their hearing than men. Their bodies are more flexible, and their brains have more smell receptors.
There are many other ways that a woman’s body differs from a man’s body. In the female brain, connection paths zigzag between the two hemispheres, while those pathways are a straight line in men.
The average woman’s heart is 25% smaller than a man’s. The heart in female beats about eight beats per minute faster than a man’s heart.
The average woman takes 47 hours to process each meal, while the average man needs 33. Women have less acid in their stomachs, so food does not pass through the digestive tract as fast.
Women have more language protein in their bodies. This is why the average woman speaks about 20,000 words a day while the average man speaks only about 13,000. It is also the reason that women speak faster than men.
Women’s skin is 25% thinner than male skin, which is why women’s skin ages faster and gets more wrinkles.
While men have more fibrous muscles, women have more estrogen in their muscles than men. Therefore, they can go on with strenuous exercises for about 75% longer.
All these reasons and more makes the woman’s body a unique creation.
Why is it important to know your body shape?
If you have ever gone clothes shopping and left a store empty-handed, then you probably did not consider your body shape. When shopping online, knowing your body’s shape can be even more critical to avoid countless returns. When you know your body shape, you can buy clothes that look great on you and feel great wearing them.
Imagine that you could open your closet and find a wardrobe full of clothes that fit your body beautifully. Instead of trying on countless dress styles or jeans, you know that each one fits you beautifully.
Rather you are going on a blind date or a job interview, imagine that the person looking at you is noticing things like your beautiful eyes and your intelligence as opposed to the fact that your top is too tight around your stomach.
Instead of leaving fashion stores in utter frustration, imagine that you can quickly choose outfits that will look great on you. The same applies when you shop online. You can fill your closet with clothes you love instead of things you forgot to return but never wear. There will be no need to beg your friends to buy your shopping mistakes so that you can buy something that looks great on you.
It is easy to feel confident when you know that you look super in many scenarios. Therefore, it is easier to catch the eye of the guy you want to get to know better. It is also easier to look good at work to get the next big promotion. Feeling good about what you are wearing makes you more self-confident.
Can body shape change?
Yes, your body shape can change over time, and therefore, it is beneficial to consider your body shape frequently. After all, the clothes that fit you a few years ago may be back in style, but you may not feel fabulous wearing them because your body shape has changed over time.
The woman’s body does not get its shape until she is in her 20s. At that point, fat from her face leaves and settles around her mid-section. Depending on where it settles, you will have a different body shape than when younger.
Secondly, many women find that pregnancy changes their body shape forever. Hips and ribs often become wider to accommodate the growing fetus. While some women will get their original form back after giving birth, others will find these changes permanent. Women will want to consider their changing body shape during and after pregnancy to keep looking sharp.
Often, menopause changes a woman’s body shape even more, and body fat may move from the hips to the central tummy area. When this occurs, the change is often permanent, requiring women to find new attractive ways to dress.
Most people put on a few extra pounds around their 30th birthday. This excess fat tends to gather around the body’s midsection, and this change continues to happen for many years. You may combat some of these changes by eating a healthy diet.
People over 40 tend to get shorter, changing their body’s shape. In fact, by the time a person turns 60, most women will be about 2 ins. Or 5 centimeters shorter than when they graduated from high school. Some medical conditions can also cause changes in a woman’s body shape as she ages.
In this chapter, we have looked at the importance of your body’s shape and why you should care. Keep reading because, in the next chapter, we will define some common body shapes. I will share my knowledge with you so that you can start applying it to your own body.
Before I get too far off-track, let’s learn about different female body shapes.
Researchers asked 18,000 women to define their body shape. The study found that 20.5% of women describe themselves as full hourglass while 19.3% define themselves as neat hourglass. Meanwhile, apples and pears were almost tied, with 16.7% of women defining their bodies as apple-shaped and 16.6% defining their bodies as pear-shaped. Only 10% said they were rectangles, while even less defined their bodies as another shape.
Yet, the frustration for many women comes from the fact that manufacturers create 80% of clothing for neat hourglasses. Before we look at what clothes look best on different body shapes, let’s set some definitions in place.
Grab a soft tape measure and measure your hips, waist, bust, and shoulders. You will also need to know your height.
Rectangle, straight, or banana
Approximately 33% of all women fall into the rectangle, straight, or banana body shape category, even if they may not perceive their bodies that way. If you fall within this category, all your measurements will be within 5% of each other. Additionally, you will have no defined waist. In addition to being called rectangular, straight, or banana, you may also hear this body shape referred to as a supermodel or ruler body shape.
For example, if your hips measure 54 in., then all your other measurements must fall between 51 ¾ and 56 ¾ in. or if your hips measure 28 in., then your shoulders, waist, and bust must measure between 26.5 and 29.5 cm.
Triangle or pear
At its most basic definition, a triangle or pear body shape is larger on the bottom than on the top. Start by determining if your shoulder measurement is bigger than your bust measurement or vice versa. Then, take your hip measurement. If you have a triangle or pear shape, your hip measurement will be at least 5% larger than your shoulder or bust measurement.
For example, if your bust measures 52 cm. and your shoulder measurement is 53 cm., your hip measurement must be at least 55 cm. In order to look at it another way, if your hips measure 28 inches, then your bust or your shoulder measurement must be at least 29.5 in., or you are not a pear shape.
The woman with a spoon body shape has a tiny upper body and gets larger around the waist. The bust should be at least 2 in. or 5 cm. smaller than the hip measurement. The spoon body shape is very similar to the pear, but the pear has a larger stomach. Therefore, look at where your body stores fat to decide between the two. If it is in the legs and hips, you have a spoon body shape.
This body shape gets its name because many believe that the woman’s body looks like a spoon. The upper body forms the handle, while the bottom middle forms the spoon’s bowl.
Sometimes called the strawberry body shape, this body shape has broad shoulders, a full bust, and narrow hips. If your measurements show that your shoulders and bust measurements are at least 5% bigger than your hip measurement, then you may be this body shape. You have much broader shoulders and a fuller bust compared to the triangle shape. While there is no agreed-upon definition, fuller busted women usually wear a size 34D or larger bra, and your hips have little definition.
You are an inverted triangle if you can draw a line across your shoulders and have it end below slightly below your hips, and it looks like an upside-down triangle.
The apple body shape has a full bust and little or no waist definition. They also have wide round shoulders. Their upper bodies are straight from the bust through the waist. The hip measurement should be at least 5% smaller than the bust measurement. Women with apple body shapes have thin arms and legs. If a woman puts on weight, she will first notice it in her stomach.
Some people believe that this body shape looks like an apple. The head is the apple’s stem, while the top of the apple is at the bustline, and the bottom is at the waistline.
If the widest part of your body is your waist, then you may have a diamond body shape. You have narrow hips, butt, and thighs. In addition, you also have narrow shoulders. Your stomach is round, and it tends to be one of the widest parts of your body. The great news for diamond-shaped women is that they usually have beautiful legs.
This body shape shares many characteristics with the apple body shape, but women with this body shape have broader hips than shoulders. While you would not describe the shoulders as narrow, as in the pear shape, they are not as full as in the apple body shape.
Round or oval
If your bust and waist measurements are larger than the rest of your measurements, you probably have a round or oval body shape. These women have tops that are bigger than their bottoms, and the shoulder measurement should be at least 5% larger than the waist measurement. It may be difficult to tell, however, because the waist is undefined. This body shape also has very narrow hips.
This body shape lends itself well to tops that flare, but I will have more to say about that later in this post.
People who have an athletic body shape define themselves as having a boyish figure. If you have too many curves to be considered a straight body shape, but you are on the verge, you have an athletic body shape. These women have hip and shoulder measurements that are almost the same. While not well defined, your waist measurement is a tad smaller than your hip and shoulder measurements. You have an athletic body if your weight is evenly distributed across your body. The chances are very strong that you have more muscles than fat, so the scales may not indicate your appearance because muscles weigh more than fat.
Many people consider the hourglass body shape the perfect body shape. The hip and shoulder measurements must be within 5% of each other in this body shape. This body shape is very similar to the athletic body shape as weight is carried all over the body. The waist curves in a little more than on the athletic body shape. The curves on your body are fun to accentuate once you figure out how to do it properly.
If you have trouble deciding between the two, consider using a body shape calculator. I will share with you my favorites later in this post.
If you have a well-defined waist that flares out to your hips, you may have a top hourglass. Your bust measurement should be your largest measurement. Additionally, your shoulders should be nicely rounded. While your measurements on top are near perfect, you have a larger bottom. Therefore, creating a balanced look when you get dressed is a challenge, but you can overcome it. You may need to learn to sew so that you can take tucks in some areas to show off your upper body curves.
Christina Aguilera and Jennifer Lopez are among the women with bottom hourglass figures. You may have one, too, if your waist is well defined. Your bottom half is noticeably larger than your top half. Therefore, your hip measurement should be your largest measurement. In particular, your hip measurement should be at least 5% bigger than your chest measurement. You can think of this as a subclass of the hourglass figure, so the chances are that you have rounded shoulders and an average-to-small chest. If you lose weight, you are likely to lose it first in your face and arms.
One unique characteristic of the skinny body shape is that their pelvis and shoulders are perfectly aligned. You can easily wrap your thumb and forefinger around your wrist because you have a small bone structure, and you have very defined buttocks. Your friends may be envious of you because you can eat almost anything and not gain weight. In fact, you find it very difficult to put on weight, so you do not weigh very much. One interesting characteristic of women with skinny bodies is that they almost universally have a very square jawline. Generally, your body weight is 20% or more less than other people of the same height.
You have a lollipop body shape if you have a full bosom and tiny hips. While the average woman’s legs are almost as long as her torso, your legs are much longer and usually very slender. Your shoulder measurement should be more than 5% larger than your waist measurement if you are a lollipop. The chances are very strong that you have an ample bosom, but it is not heavy.
While I will have more to say on the subject in the next chapter, avoid any clothing that makes your chest appear even bigger. You will also want to avoid necklaces that end at the chest line.
As I have hinted several times, you will want to keep reading to find out what you should and should not wear for each body shape. After all, you want to accentuate the positive features of your body style.
I will also be offering some suggestions on what to avoid. Often, it is not that a woman should avoid a particular clothing style altogether. Instead, she will want to focus on avoiding items with specific features.
What to wear
Choosing the right things to wear allows you to accentuate the positives of your body shape. It may bring balance to your overall look.
When you wear clothing that makes you look good, you naturally have more self-confidence. You will also have a wardrobe full of clothes that you look forward to wearing instead of wondering why you ever brought that item. Furthermore, feeling good about the way you look helps improve your mental outlook on life.
Rectangle, straight, or banana
The upper and lower portions of the straight body are exceptionally well proportioned. Therefore, you must choose outfits that break up the rectangle at the waist. You can add more volume to your top and bottom while leaving the waist unadorned if you are slender. Alternatively, heavier women will want to visually pull your waist in to make your top and bottom look bigger.
If you choose to adorn your waist, consider wearing garments that have a belt. Alternatively, if you opt to leave the waist unadorned, select options with big collars, lace trims, and ruffles near the neckline, or choose options with low, wide necklines. Tops and dresses with embellished sleeves that are loose and wide are a fantastic choice. Prints and bright colors help to create the illusion of volume. Boot cut, flare, or wide-leg pants are an excellent option for adding volume to the bottom. Choose low-or-mid-rise pants to draw attention away from the waist.
Triangle or pear
Since the pear’s body looks bigger on the bottom than on the top, you need to choose outfits that draw people’s eyes upward. Select tops and dresses with wide necklines as they will make your upper body appear wider. Tops and dresses with interesting collars can help make your upper body seem bigger. In particular, consider cowl necklines or those with lace or ruffles. If the outfit has short sleeves, choose options like batwings and bells with lots of volume. In colder months, where you need long sleeves, pick out sleeves that taper from the top down.
Select relaxed fit options that hang straight down from your hips when choosing pants. Select options that help define your waist.
Garments made from soft fabrics, like satin, georgette, or chiffon, are an ideal choice for spoon-shaped bodies. This is the perfect body shape for wearing off-shoulder and one-shoulder options. Pick out tops with wide necklines and select sleeves with lots of volume to make your upper body look more prominent.
Straight and boot-cut jeans are ideal for making your lower body look smaller. You can also opt for skinny jeans and other tight-fitting options because making your bottom look smaller helps balance your body. Selecting lighter-colored tops and pairing them with darker bottoms helps to give you a more balanced look. You can draw attention to your legs by picking out short skirts.
Inverted triangle or apple
The trick to dressing if you have an inverted triangle body shape is to choose clothes that make your upper body look smaller, and your lower body look bigger, allowing you to achieve a more balanced appearance. Select garments that drape well across the shoulders. Draw attention to your neckline by choosing options with waistline embellishments. Pick out asymmetrical tops or narrow necklines to help provide the illusion that you are taller and draw attention away from the shoulders.
Details, like big pockets, will attract attention to your slimmer lower body. Think about trousers in bright colors. Likewise, when choosing outerwear and blazers, opt for choices that end below your waist, especially those with design details that will draw the viewer’s attention down towards your legs. Choosing pieces that have asymmetrical features, especially near the stomach, can help break up your body shape. Tops with deep necklines help to make you look taller.
Since the diamond shape has a larger midriff and a smaller top and bottom, clothes should help draw the viewer’s attention up or down. Choose tops made of flowy material that have interesting embellishments near the shoulders. Select dresses and tops with an uneven hemline to help camouflage your thicker middle.
Pants should sit comfortably on the stomach. Select polyester cotton and polyester elastane options as they drape nicely. Suppose you wear pants with a zipper, choose options that have a side zipper. Choosing skirts that are at least knee length will make you appear taller.
Round or oval
Wearing dark colors will make you look smaller, but use this to your advantage by incorporating light-colored options to accentuate your best features. Using horizontal stripes can help you look taller. An excellent choice for women with a round body shape is tops with features near the shoulders. These tops make you look wider and taller.
Make jackets your best friend if you have a round body because the horizontal lines will help to break up your body shape. Choosing options with no closures is usually best so that the line is continuous. Choose high-waisted trousers to help create a waistline.
If you have an athletic body, you may want to consider adding volume to your body through the clothes you choose. You can easily wear tops and dresses with wide necklines. Additionally, consider wearing outfits with lots of volume in the sleeves. Since you have curves in many of the right places, consider wearing spaghetti-strap dresses or tops and options with cutouts in the sides or back.
When it comes time to pick out your bottoms, you can easily wear big belts and other design features that will attract attention to your waist. You have the perfect body shape for wearing short dresses and shorts.
Since the hourglass figure is perfectly proportioned between the top and bottom, the trick is to flatter your body’s natural curves. Belts and other options that help define your waist allow others to see how well balanced your body is, so be sure to select those choices. You will look fabulous in outfits with narrow necklines because they will not detract from your body’s natural balance. Opt for options with set-in sleeves that follow your body’s natural curves. Select those types of coats, blazers and tops that extend to your hipbone to avoid upsetting your body’s natural balance.
Select pants that are wide-legged and go straight down to the floor. High-waisted trousers usually look best. Opting for trousers with large waistbands that fit snugly often helps to show off your body’s beautiful curves. A pencil skirt is an excellent option for an hourglass because it draws attention to your tiny waist. You may also want to consider full skirts with a tight band at their top.
Your goal when getting dressed should be to balance your beautiful upper body with your lower body. Choose tops made from form-fitting fabrics as they will keep your bust covered while accommodating your large midsection. You are likely to look stunning in deep V-neck tops as they help make you look taller and can help your body’s two halves look more coordinated.
Flare, boot-cut, and wide-leg jeans are great options to help balance your look, especially if they are distressed or have other embellishments to help draw attention to your midsection. Choose skirts with a fitted waistband and some flare. Long dresses that hug your curves and flare out slightly at the bottom are an excellent option for special occasions.
Since your bottom half is naturally larger than your top half, your goal in dressing needs to create balance. Dresses and tops with scoop necklines are perfect for helping you look a little wider on the top. Options with puffy sleeves often look great on you because it moves the viewer’s eyes towards your face.
Choose skirts with a fitted waistline and skim over the body instead of hugging your curves. An empire dress can be a great option, especially options made from lightweight material. Jeans with some flair are an excellent option for hiding some of the weight of your lower half, helping to bring your two halves together.
If you have a skinny body, you should aim to add volume and dimension. You can add dimension to your frame by choosing structured fabrics, but you also have the option of wearing silky fabrics that will show off your curves. Whichever you choose for the day, select the same amount of structure for your body’s top and bottom parts. Another way to add volume to your body is by wearing horizontal stripes. Long-sleeve tops and dresses are ideal for camouflaging skinny arms.
Bootleg jeans and trousers are ideal because they add volume to your lower body. Consider choosing design details that will add volume to your stomach and waist area, such as big pockets.
Since lollipops often have a top-heavy look, it is vital to add design features to your clothing to give a more balanced look. This body shape is ideal for wearing deep V-neck tops and dresses as it helps to bring attention down to your slender legs. Additionally, sweetheart necklines and halter tops bring the viewer’s attention up towards your face.
When choosing bottoms, flared skirts and bell-bottom jeans help to bring balance to your look. You will also want to wear jeans and pants with design features that make your hips appear a little wider than they are in actuality.
What not to wear depending on your body type
I have now discussed what to wear for each of the body shapes. While that is the most important, each body shape also has things you will want to avoid.
Keeping these items out of your wardrobe will give you a closet full of clothes that look wonderful on you, and you will love wearing everything that you own.
Rectangle, straight, or banana
Do not choose tops with a square neckline because they will make your body look even more rectangular. You have so many fun styles of sleeves that you can wear, but you should be careful to avoid fitted sleeves as they will make your body appear more like a column. Avoid shirts that should be worn tucked in or that end right at the waistline, as they will draw attention away from the volume that you need to balance your lookout.
When selecting trousers, avoid those that end precisely at the waist. They will make you look shorter and squarer. While you want some flare to the bottom of your slacks, stay away from those with extremely wide openings, as they will make you look off-balanced. Avoid A-line dresses because they will make you look shapeless. In addition, avoid skirts that are too full as they will make you look bottom-heavy.
Triangle or pear
You will want to avoid long or thin necklines as they will make your upper body seem even thinner. Avoid any outfit that creates a line across your body. This includes cropped blazers and coats ending at the waist. Any dress with a straight cut, such as many jumpers, will make you look heavier as it hides your waist.
Avoid pants with too many design details since you have a larger bottom than top. You should also avoid bottoms that taper as they will make your midsection look even bigger. Leave the skinny jeans at the store because they will make the upper part of your body look even bigger.
Avoid wearing light-colored bottoms with darker tops, as it will make your upper half look even smaller and your bottom half appear bigger. Regardless of whether it is a pair of pants or a dress, avoid wearing anything made from stiff fabric. You need to avoid any top that is too loose, especially those with embellishments around the waist.
Leave behind any jeans or trousers that do not fit you tightly. In addition, you should avoid those with design details, like big pockets, that will attract attention. Avoid all types of blazers, jackets, or outerwear with design details that will lie on your hips or waist. You should also skip any choice that ends right at your waist or hips, as they will make that area look more prominent.
Inverted triangle or apple
You want to choose options that draw the viewer’s eyes away from your broad shoulders, so stay away from wide necklines as they will make your shoulders look even broader. Likewise, you should avoid off-shoulder tops and dresses as they naturally draw attention to your shoulders. Puff and options with significant design details on the sleeves will also make your shoulders appear broader.
Avoid light-colored tops as they will make your upper half seem even more prominent, especially when paired with a dark-colored bottom. Skinny and tight jeans make your lower half look even smaller, so you should avoid buying these. When selecting blazers, jackets, or outerwear, avoid those that end precisely at the waist or have any design detail that will draw the viewer’s eyes upwards towards the shoulders. You should stick with single-breasted jackets as they will make you look slimmer in the upper body than double-breasted options.
Avoid anything with embellishments near your waist. Furthermore, you should avoid designs and fabrics that stick out away from the body. You should also avoid button-down shirts as they will gap open to accommodate your larger middle. Long-sleeves, especially those with elaborate design details at the cuff, should be avoided as they will draw attention to your midsection.
Do not wear short dresses as they will draw attention to your heavier midriff area. The same applies to trousers with significant design details near the waist, like fancy closures or big pockets. You should also avoid any outfit with design features, such as belts or large bows, near your waist.
Round or oval
Avoid anything that fits too tightly, especially on the upper body. You should also avoid anything with vertical stripes. Another thing that you will want to avoid is wearing monotone colors as it will make your body appear even rounder. You should also avoid fitted tops because they do not help break up your body shape.
When selecting pants, dresses, or overcoats, avoid those options that have large prints, especially if you tend to be a little overweight because they will make you look even larger.
Avoid wearing clothes that unbalance your body’s natural physique. If you choose to add volume to your upper body, you need to add it to your lower body. Horizontal stripes will make you look taller and leaner, so you should opt for smaller prints and vertical lines if you need to add volume to your look. Skip over options that have deep narrow necklines to make you look thinner and taller.
Wearing jeans and trousers that are too big hide your body’s shape. Avoid high-rise pants as they will hide your body’s natural curves.
Avoid options that hang straight down from your shoulders without any design details to accentuate your waist. Likewise, avoid anything that hides your body’s natural curves, like boxy tops and dresses. You should not wear necklines that are too wide or have too many embellishments because they will make you look top-heavy. Likewise, turtlenecks and boat necks will unbalance your look. Dresses and tops with lots of embellishments on the sleeves or with too much fabric in the sleeves will not look good on you.
You should avoid any option that adds extra bulk at the waistline as it will deter from your body’s natural curves. Avoid pleats, darts, or embellishments that will attract attention to your hips. Stay away from low-waisted options, as they will make your hips look wider. Unless you balance them with a top with lots of fullness around the chest, avoid skirts that are too full as they will make your bottom look too heavy.
While many body shapes need to wear dark on the bottom and a lighter color on the top, you should avoid doing this, but you should do just the opposite. Avoid options that add fullness to your top, but choose to add fullness in your midsection and at the bottom. Button-down shirts can be very problematic for you because if you choose one that fits across your bust, you are likely to need to expand the waist.
Avoid skirts and trousers that end right on the waist as they will make this area look bigger. Leave shorter coats and blazers at the store as they will detract from your beautiful upper body.
You should avoid anything that adds more volume to your bottom. Avoid tops that fit your body too snugly because they emphasize its volume. Tops and dresses with small neck holes do not belong in your closet unless they have other design features, such as bows or ruffles, that will draw the viewer’s attention up towards your face.
You should avoid tight and skinny jeans because they show off your slender legs, making it even more challenging to balance your body’s two halves.
Avoid wearing black because it will make you look even skinnier. Likewise, horizontal stripes will make you look even thinner. If your arms are extremely thin, then avoid short sleeves.
If you would prefer people not to talk about how thin you are, then avoid skinny jeans. They will only make you look slimmer. Additionally, wearing short dresses will bring attention to your legs.
Avoid clothes that have lots of design features, such as ruffles and big collars, on the top because they add additional volume to your upper body, which already looks bigger than your lower body. This is especially true of any outfit with many design details around the bosom.
While you will want to avoid skinny jeans, you will also want to avoid those options with extremely wide bottoms. Both will bring your body further out of alignment.
If you are in a hurry to buy a new outfit and know your body shape, then you are set to go shopping. I recommend that you keep reading, however, so that you can pick up even more styling advice.
If you are still debating which body shape you are, I will also be sharing some online tools to help you find out. Therefore, you will want to keep reading.
Body type quiz
American psychologist William Herbert Sheldon developed a different way to describe body shapes in the 1940s. He called his system Somatotype and named the three body shapes after the three germ layers of embryonic development: He felt that three body shapes not only looked different but had different emotional traits.
Others have developed the system further since Sheldon’s death. Some doctors even believe that they can predict current and future health challenges based on the system. I remain skeptical, but it is fun to think about sometimes, and I am certainly thankful that I do not see a person’s mental health as based on their body shape. Instead, I choose to see all bodies as beautiful.
Take this quiz to see which one matches your body the best before delving deeper into the three body types.
Which one of these choices comes closest to describing your body shape?
- A) Round or pear
- B) Athletic
- C) Skinny
Where do you carry your body fat?
- A) In your midsection
- B) All over the body
- C) What fat?
How easily do you put on weight?
- A) I put on weight easily
- B) I tend to gain muscles instead of fat
- C) I could eat all day and not gain any weight
How would you describe your bone structure?
- A) Stocky with larger hips and midsection
- B) I have narrow shoulders and hips for my height
- C) My shoulders are wider than my hips
How would you describe your metabolism?
- A) I have a slow metabolism.
- B) I have a fast metabolism.
- C) My metabolism allows me to gain and lose weight easily.
How muscular are you?
- A) Most of my muscles are hidden behind fat.
- B) My muscles are smaller than I would like them to be.
- C) I have an average amount of muscles.
If you have more A answers than any other answer, you would be an ectomorph. Under Sheldon’s system, you are short, fat, and have trouble losing weight. You are also friendly and outgoing, but you can be perceived as lazy. Since you carry a lot of your weight around your midsection, you should look for clothes that help balance your look while minimizing anything around the waist that might make you cut in half. Single-breasted blazers that are at least as long as the bottom of your hips can be a great choice to make you appear taller.
If you have more B answers, then you are an endomorph. You are skinny and tall. While you are seen as intellectual and gentle, you prefer to stay home instead of partying, and you may suffer from anxiety. You probably have a slender waist, narrow hips and shoulders, small joints, and long legs and arms. Think about wearing options that will make you look wider, such as vertical stripes. You may also want to consider wearing clothes with visually interesting features near your waist, like trousers with big pockets or made from a different material.
If you had more C answers, then you are a mesomorph. Your weight is naturally distributed across your body. You build muscles quickly and have a narrow waist. You love to go to parties and are very competitive. You can also be a tough negotiator. You probably have broader shoulders and narrower hips. Choose skirts and dresses that flare out at the bottom to make you look a little wider. Avoid sleeves that have too much volume along with plunging necklines, as they will make you look taller and narrower.
Body type calculator
If you have gotten to this point and are still a little confused about your body type, an online body type calculator can help. Most of these calculators ask you to use your body measurements to determine your body type.
Remember that not everyone agrees on how many body types there are, so you will want to figure out how many types the calculator acknowledges before using it. In some cases, it is as few as five. Therefore, you may still fit into one of our other categories.
You should follow some tips when taking your measurements with a soft tape measure:
- Bust – Take this measurement across the fullest part of your bust.
- Waist – Take this measurement at your natural waist, which is usually located just above your belly button.
- High hip – Take this measurement around your pelvic region, which is about 7 in. or 18 cm. below your waist.
- Hip – Take this measurement at the widest point of your hips.
One possible calculator that you will want to consider is at Inch Calculator. I especially like this calculator because it allows you to enter your answers in in., cm. or mm. These easy-to-understand diagrams show you exactly where to measure. The answer is found in seconds, followed by information on different body shapes.
Another fabulous choice is Good Calculators. I love this one for its simplicity. If you already understand how to take accurate measurements of your body, then this can be an excellent option because it just gives you the answer. Then, you can apply the information I have provided in this book to your body type. Unlike some body type calculators, there is no advertising on this site, so no one is trying to sell you clothes that may or may not be right for your body’s shape.
A third option that I like is Calculator Online. If you are in charge of buying clothes for your family or want to surprise a male friend with a special present, this option can be an excellent choice because it allows you to see body shapes for males and females. You only have the option of entering figures in cm., so be sure to measure using a metric soft measuring tape or convert your figures.
When a calculator uses fewer body types, they often group together:
- Apple and inverted triangle
- Banana, straight, and rectangle
- Pear, spoon, bell, and triangle
- Hourglass, bottom hourglass, and top hourglass
We have marched through a lot of territory to save you time and money buying clothes, and we have not finished yet. No outfit is complete without accessories. In the last chapter, we will look at what accessories look best with each body style, so you will want to be sure to keep reading. After all, you want to look fabulous, and choosing the right accessories for your body type helps you achieve that goal in a big way. It may also save you time because you can quickly determine what suitable choices are for your body type.
Instead of writing about a style for every body type, I have made comments where I feel like the choice is significant.
Earrings are a super fashion accessory, but you should choose your style based on your body type. If you are a:
- Rectangle – Select stud earrings paired with a matching statement necklace are an ideal option.
- Pear – Picking out dangle or drop earrings to help make your body look even taller.
- Inverted Triangle – Selecting small earrings, like studs, are often the best choice because you do not want to detract the viewer’s attention from your lower body.
- Hourglass – Choose earrings that help keep your shoulders and hips balanced.
- Apple – Picking big earrings helps draw the viewer’s eyes up and away from your larger midsection.
- Athletic – Picking out stud earrings because they do not detract from your body’s natural curves.
- Round – Choosing dangle or drop earrings helps to give your body more of a horizontal appearance.
When choosing rings, you want something that will balance your body type. Therefore, you will want to think about:
- Pear – Cocktail rings can be the perfect option for this body type as they can help draw attention away from the hips.
- Apple – Small rings and bands are a great option so that they do not detract from pulling the viewer’s eyes upwards.
- Rectangle – Wearing several different rings is a great way to break up this body shape.
- Inverted triangles – Picking out colorful toe rings is a great way to draw attention to your legs and angles, which are the best parts of your body.
- Hourglass – You have the perfect body type for wearing large statement rings.
Necklaces can be a great way to direct the eye where you want the viewer to look. Unique styles work best for different body shapes. Consider:
- Rectangle – Selecting stud earrings and pairing them with a matching statement necklace is an ideal option.
- Inverted Triangle – Opting for long pendant necklaces is a great choice because they break up your chest vertically.
- Hourglass – Picking either very short necklaces that hug your neck or longer angular options reaching almost to your stomach helps to accentuate your curves.
- Top hourglass – Select an option that ends above your bust to draw attention to this body part.
Bracelets are a great fashion accessory for many body types, including:
- Inverted triangle – Use chunky or bold bracelets to draw attention down away from your broad shoulders.
- Pear – Use chunky bracelets to draw attention away from your larger waist.
- Straight – Wear many bangles on your wrist as they will make you look wider and give you more volume.
- Inverted triangle – Wear long-chain bracelets to help move the viewer’s eye down towards your lower body.
Bags and purses
Easily carry everything you need with you while looking sharp. Your bag or purse should match your body style. Consider:
- Apple – Choose medium-sized handbags such as bowling bag purses, tote bags, and hand-held structured bags, and stay away from clutches, cross body bags, and shoulder bags as they will attract attention to your larger bust.
- Inverted triangle – Choose long-strapped satchel bags and long-strapped shoulder bags, hand-held structured bags, cross body bags, and hobo bags that end at your hips or below to deemphasize your larger upper body.
- Pear – Clutches are a wonderful choice for your body type because you can tuck them under your arm, making your shoulders appear broader. Choose options that hang between your natural waist and hips if you want a bag.
- Hourglass – Shoulder bags, satchel bags, cross body bags, and hobo bags that hang near your natural waist are outstanding options.
- Athletic and skinny – Choose bags that are the right size for your body, but you can easily carry almost any style.
- Rectangle – Choose satchel handbags and clutches that will hang at your natural waist.
No outfit would be complete without the right type of shoes. With so many different styles available, you should consider shoes that accent the positives of your body type. Consider:
- Top hourglass or inverted triangle – Bold-colored flats and thick-soled boots look awesome on you.
- Hourglass – High-heel peep-toe shoes aceturate your natural feminine form, but you can also rock neutral-colored brogues.
- Square – Sneakers and classic pumps look super on you, but you should avoid pointed-toe shoes, especially if you are tall.
- Apple – Stilettos are a perfect choice because they help to show off your cleavage.
- Pear – Open-toed sandals and sneakers are great choices for this body type because they will not detract from your upper body.
Many body shapes can benefit from belts, while others should avoid them. Consider:
- Rectangle – Avoid drawing attention to your waistline by choosing a natural or muted-colored belt.
- Pear – Choose options that fit right at your waist.
Inverted triangle – Choose belts that are medium-sized or larger to help balance out your body.
- Hourglass – Choose soft belts that naturally follow the curves of your body.
- Apple – If you choose to wear a belt, it should be right below your bustline.
Scarves are often overlooked as a fashion accessory. Yet, they can be perfect for many body types. Consider:
- Rectangle – Break up your shape with a fold-up or knotted scarf in a beautiful small print.
- Pear – Bold-colored and chunky scarves that wrap around your neck are perfect for this body type.
- Inverted triangle – Thin, solid-colored scarves and ties are a great option for elongating your body.
- Hourglass – Wear folded-up scarves that end at or above your bustline.
- Apple – Choose wide scarves and wear them near your shoulders or trade them in for a shawl.
It comes as no surprise that you must pick hats wisely. They can accentuate your features and either be flattering or terribly wrong. Most people select different types of hats based on their face shape, which is great. Still, you can also benefit from considering your body shape.
- Petite – Don’t pick hats with wide brims. Opt for hats with small details such as cocktail hats, a hat with feathers on the crown, or a pillbox hat.
- Full figured – Curvy women might benefit from choosing full-brimmed hats so as to add some balance. For instance, a hat with long feathers or a Derby hat can be tremendously flattering.
- Tall – Tall women need to wear a big hat. Choose hats with a wide brim but preferably a short crown, such as Pillbox hats. The idea is you go for a hat that’s flattering but doesn’t make you look even taller unless that’s what you want.
- Broad shoulders – Women with broad shoulders need to choose a hat carefully to balance their silhouette. Make sure you opt for a wide-brimmed hat.
- Skinny – Skinny women might want to select a Trilby hat or similar. Be careful not to pick a hat that’s too big.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this post about the body shape as much as I have enjoyed bringing it to you. Applying the information in this post will help you feel more confident in your wardrobe choices every day.
It is natural to have questions. Therefore, I encourage you to post them. I love answering your questions and interacting with you.
Please share this information with your friends if you have found it helpful. Even guys looking for some advice when shopping for a special outfit for their special lady will benefit from reading it.
Be sure to check out our other posts for fantastic advice that is easy to apply to your life.