These Body Shape Style Tips are intended specifically for women who are feeling lost with their personal style and need some guidelines and boundaries to start with, until they find their confidence.
The best thing about fashion is that anything goes! You can pull off pretty much anything if it authentically suits your personality and you have the confidence to pull it off. However if you don’t, I have found that some of these style tips have helped my clients to start off by experimenting with new looks, leading eventually to greater confidence.
Apple Body Shape OR For Ladies with a Fuller Bust, Upper Arms and Tummies
Apple shapes usually have great legs, slim hips and a skinny bottom in comparison to their quite generous and full bust.
Apples can often feel they have a bit of a tummy and find that when they put weight on it goes on their boobs, upper arms, and tummy; making them look quite top heavy at times if they wear the wrong outfit.
However if you are a lady with a generous bust, arms or tummy, you can use the style advice for an apple shape to find more styles that may work for you.
Apple Shape Golden Rules
In general apples want to create the illusion of length on their torso and break up the volume of their full bust, tummy and sometimes heavier arms with the use of open necklines that elongate such as v-necks and halter-necks.
However the lengthening effect can also be achieved with tops that feature vertical ruching, vertical patterns, long necklaces or any layering with open jackets or cardigans which helps to break up the volume of the body.
The bust can also be made to look more compact therefore balancing better with the lower body, by layering tops for example using a darker vest top under shirts and blouses and leaving the top button open to reveal the small triangle of darker fabric below. Clients have been shocked at how this can shave inches off their waste and bust and give an overall slimming appearance.
Clever layering like this and this also overcomes the challenge that apples often face of gaping shirts and blouses, as instead they are taking control of the situation and deliberately allowing the shirt to be more open over the bust, with a vest top underneath to cover the bra and bust.
Lucky apple shapes or those with good legs can get away with skirts and trousers with more volume, pattern, detail or colour and can wear a wider variety of shoe, sandal and boot as the detail on the bottom half balances with their more generous upper body. This is usually the complete opposite of a pear shape.
The first step for all women especially apples, is to get properly fitted for a bra, so head to your local lingerie shop where the service is free and the women really know their stuff. When you are fitted with the right size and style of bra for your figure, it will knock at least a size off your waist, improve your posture and make your bust look more toned and younger!! Yes a bra really can transform your body that much so it’s well worth the investment of time and money.
Don’t forget that style of bra is important too and for many larger, fuller busted ladies as apples usually are, I often recommend a balconette style which lifts and separates the bust giving the appearance of a slimmer waist and flatter stomach; providing curves to die for. Ask lingerie specialists for minimiser bras too which can work wonders, if you feel you have a disproportionately large bust and struggle with dressing because of this.
If you have a generous bust, ensure your bra doesn’t show underneath your clothing by wearing a beige coloured bra as this will blend with any skin tone from alabaster to black skin tones. I have found that when you see a white bra under a white top, it’s like two shining beacons that draws the eye straight to them and will automatically make your bust, waist and tummy look bigger.
Some apple shapes are conscious of their stomach so even though shorter, fitted tops actually can look better than longer tops (which cover their great legs up) it is often second nature to apple shapes to pull their tops far down over their tummy in an attempt to hide it.
By making tops a little shorter so that they finish mid-tummy (when I say mid-tummy I actually refer to about the top of the hip bone), this cuts up the volume of the stomach and makes the tummy appear smaller and the legs appear longer. If you feel too ‘exposed’ in a shorter, more fitted top just try to layer a long line cardigan or open drape jacket over the top to make it work.
Apple shapes often look great in a pencil skirt with tops tucked in which makes the legs look longer, the tummy and waist smaller, and enhances the full bust. When wearing trousers, shortening the top slightly uses the same principles as it gives the apple back her long, slim legs.
Point of Interest
When I talk about points of interest in terms of an outfit, I am talking about where we want to draw the eye to or perhaps add volume in order to balance the figure.
With an apple shape’s upper body volume isn’t a problem as apples have a full bust, often with a short waist and fuller tummy and sometimes less toned upper arms, giving the appearance of a more rounded upper half.
Here we are looking to lengthen the upper body rather than add a point of interest as this will balance the body with the slimness of the legs, hips and bottom. This can be done with clothing that creates vertical lines on the body such as necklace or pendant, scarves, deeper necklines or layering that give the illusion of length down the body and breaks up the natural volume.
When it comes to adding interest to an outfit, apples can get away with a huge variety of fabulous shoes as they have the legs to carry them off, so any coloured, patterned or interesting shoe is a fabulous way to accessorise if you’re an apple.
If an apple shape wears loose, baggy, short tops, it adds pounds and width to their upper body (which we are looking to slim and lengthen) and in comparison makes their legs and hips look even smaller and shorter, giving a very imbalanced look.
Often apple shapes can feel too exposed in a fitted top and trousers as they don’t feel they have the waist or tummy to pull it off, so what’s the answer?
If you feel too exposed with a fitted top on, add a layer over the top such as a long line cardigan or open single breasted or drape jacket, which will make your torso look more compact, long and slim, whilst giving you coverage AND a well fitted look. Long line cardigans/jackets that finish just on the hip or thigh work fantastically for apple shapes.
It is also important that no matter what the style of trouser you wear, they must show off the shape and size of the leg as this is the asset you want to be highlighting. Don’t swamp your pins with baggy ill-fitting trousers, which many apple shapes are tempted to do; as they feel are working on the notion that making the bottom half look wider in this case will make the upper body appear smaller in comparison.
In this instance it’s not the case and apples can appear bigger all over if they wear wide trousers and loose baggy tops together. Trousers must fit nicely, especially around the thigh area.
Dressing the Upper Body
With a fuller bust look for neck-lines that are more open and elongate the torso. V-necks and halter-necks are always winning styles on bustier ladies because they lengthen the upper body, however you can use necklaces and scarves over any top to break up the volume of the bust to create this length. When looking at jackets, avoid double breasted as this may make you look wider so opt for single breasted styles and wear them open rather than fastened.
If you have problems getting shirts to fit you and want to avoid the embarrassing “popping” of buttons, wear a good quality cami or vest underneath the shirt, blouse or top in a plain colour such as black and just button the shirt half way. That way you will still be able to control your curves whilst looking smart and professional. The same goes for deep neck-lined tops where the fabric can appear stretched over the bust.
For apple shapes conscious of their tummies, layer longer line cardigans over block colour to elongate the body. This creates a vertical strip of colour down the centre of the body which lengthens and slims all the way down. Jackets and waistcoat that are tailored in at the waist will give the illusion of a defined waist (apple shapes usually have a shorter thicker waist), hence a more defined hourglass figure so blazers or short tailored jackets will work well.
Show off Your Legs
Apple shapes often have cracking leg therefore trousers should balance the fullness of the upper body, but must always fit well in order to enhance the leg. If you are an apple and want to wear a shorter style top, look for slim bootleg styles which will highlight your figure but provide balance with your fuller upper half. Any trousers with soft pleats, details or pockets on the hips will also give your lower body more curves, so some of the more current styles of trousers we are seeing in the shops such as peg trousers or harems should also look great on you.
When working with any wider leg trouser you must be aware that you need to really highlight and accentuate the upper body with shorter, fitted tops or layers otherwise wider styles of trousers may run the risk of making you look wider and shorter all over.
When wearing longer, looser tops you can go to town with your choice of trouser and try leggings, treggings, skinny jeans; often even using lighter or brighter colours and a variety of lengths such as white crops. If you really have the legs, you may even be able to get away with more textured fabrics, all of which is the opposite advice for dressing a pear shape.
When it comes to skirts you can use tulip, peplum and bubble skirts in bold colours and patterns to give you an instant bum, hips and waist. A belt can be added for additional impact if you wish. 50s style a-line skirts that cinch in the waist are also a great option if 50s is your style as they make the hips and thighs fuller (and the waist look smaller in comparison). 50s skirts work for apples as they create more fullness on the bottom half and in comparison make the upper half look smaller. You can also go for 60s style minis if they work for your personality and style, as you have the legs to play around with some more daring hem lengths. Fuller skirts work better for apples, rather than fuller trousers such as wide leg or boyfriend jeans, providing the skirt still reveals the leg from the knee down, enhancing the leg, were as trousers cover them up.
Its good to wear slimmer style trousers such as leggings, treggings, cropped styles and skinny jeans with a chunkier platform style shoe, wedge or boot to re-balance the figure whilst still showing off your fantastic pins, otherwise you may look too top heavy.
Other Body Shapes that may be worth checking out: –
- Pear Shape (Main Challenge Area: Hips, Thighs and/or Legs)
- Apple Body Shape (Main Challenge Area: Bust and / or Upper Arms)
- Diamond Body Shape (Main Challenge Area: Tummy)
- Hourglass Body Shape (Main Challenge Area: Achieving balanced outfits)
- Column Body Shape (Main Challenge Area: Want to Look More Feminine)
Many women also have to deal with body shape challenges when it comes to proportion in terms of: –
- Plus Size Body (Main Challenge Area: Find it hard to Find Stylish Clothes and may want to Look Slimmer)
- Tall Women (Main Challenge: Find it difficult to get clothes to fit well in the arms and legs, and often avoid heels)
- Petite Women (Main Challenge: Find it hard to get clothes to fit well around the torso, shoulders and in terms in length. Can look drowned easily)