Every year there's a round of "best for your body" articles that hit the mags and sites. Every year you get advice to dress for your shape or play up your best feature. And every year you (like me) give the information a passing glance and then toss it aside only to spend your next bout of shopping tearing through your favorite trends with no thought to whether your new pieces are flattering you. I'm here to tell you, let this article be the one that changes your shopping perspective. Because you will not believe how your self confidence skyrockets when you're wearing a look that shows what you've got in the best way. You already know what I'm saying is true, because you have a favorite pair of jeans or favorite dress that makes you feel like a goddess. Imagine if that was your entire wardrobe? Not just one or two looks? It's possible. Think about it and get inspiration from these high fashion figure-flattering dresses.
You might be lacking in curves, but if you're reading this, you don't lack a sense of style. This summer, it's definitely time for you to join the peplum and/or structured skirt bandwagon. Adding volume and shape to your lower half will accentuate both your bottom and top half. It's like a two-for-one deal for amping up your looks.
She's Got Legs
We've all got that part of us we like showing off. If yours are your stems, then absolutely embrace minis and shorts. While you're at it, keep your eyes peeled for m-slit skirts and dresses. They have a way of being subversively sexy and play peekaboo in the most enticing way when you move. Extra tip, barely-there sandals and nude heels will make your legs appear even longer and more gorgeous.
Small and Humble
Summertime is the time to rejoice in having a modestly sized chest. You can pull off deep-Vs and the thinnest-strapped cross-backs like nobody's business. Take advantage of it! The most delicate and beautiful pieces are on the table for you. Let no neckline be too low (like this Roberto Cavalli) and no lace insert be too sheer.
It's true that women with bodies that resemble Lombard Street have dressing challenges. We need to make sure there's at least a little spandex in most of our pieces for stretch and movement, we need to be careful not to show part of our bodies others would consider indecent, even though on a less curvy figure it wouldn't raise an eyebrow, but for all our grief there's the knowledge that we're lookers. We also get to keep our wardrobe simple and chic because what we have on underneath is display enough. This stunning plum dress from Issa is exactly what I'm talking about. Let your shape be your guide and let your pieces show it off.
Shorties can easily get lost in flowing gown-like maxi dresses. But for a woman with a few extra inches on her frame, they're an ideal piece for days and nights. Allowing for breathability under the sun and glamour under the stars, if you're on the tall side, this is your summer dress.
It's called the inverted triangle, sometimes the apple, and it refers to a shape that's a bit top heavy. What it needs is detail and/or volume around the hip area to create balance. Think of Donna Karan as your inspiration. She's one of the reigning queens of draping for flattering a woman's figure.
You might call yourself a triangle or a pear, we'd probably call you perfect in all of your shapely glory. Either way, you're an ideal candidate for mid-length dresses that float and follow your movements, just like this dress from Edun. Keep your shoulders and chest exposed for balance and to draw the eye upward.
Shoulders... many say they're the universally beautiful part of a woman, while others know that we can have insecurities about a set we feel is too wide. Kick that second guessing to the curb by sticking to wide straps, halters or tops cut like this dress from Craven. Drawing the eye inward will create the illusion of a more balanced pair.
It's All in the Details
If you have the opposite concern: shoulders that are too small, feel free to look for dresses that have extra straps and details, creating a focal point and the gift of shoulders that look further extended than they are.
The Gun Show
Love your arms? Then definitely show them off as often as possible. You don't need layers and short sleeves, you need looks that are going to put them on display. Here's one: Thinner straps and skin tones will have onlookers checking out those beautiful arms.
For some of us, it's not our shape or a specific body part that calls to mind our confidence, it's our skin. Whether it's tawny or fair, or slathered in self-tanning moisturizer, you want to simply glow. And we agree that it's one goal every woman can have in mind for the summer to great effect. Pick out iridescent fabrics to highlight whatever shade your skin is.