Not understanding your shape is what prevents that amazing frock look less than amazing (though I think you always look great!).
It’s why a dress that looks fantastic and stylish on one person might look like a potato sack on another. Understanding your body shape isn’t about understanding your weight- people will invariable fit into one category or another regardless of their build.
Fear not! It’s not rocket science and it’s not difficult. It’s just a matter of understanding your strengths and understanding how to enhance them with what you wear and how you accessorise.
Of course, it’s important to remember, that if you wear something that you love love love and feel confident and gorgeous in, these guides are to be thrown out the window! Also, often a style of dress will suit more than one (or all!) body shapes!
Read our shape definitions and recommendations below, or choose one of the icons to see which dresses we know will suit you to a tee.
If you are an apple, you may also describe yourself as “top heavy”. You have a bust larger than your hips by 6cm or more. You will have lovely slim arms and sometimes wider shoulders. You may carry weight around your mid section, and have narrow hips and long legs. You may also have a protruding belly and you will probably carry your weight in your midriff section – especially if you are a smaller bust.
Celebrities that have apple shapes include Angelina Jolie, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Blake Lively and Elizabeth Hurley.
You have a gorgeous bust. So celebrate it with low necks, v necks, scoop necks, strapless and low sweetheart necklines. Your wonderful arms will own a cap sleeve, and your long legs suit a shorter skirt.
If you’re a pear, the fit and flare dresses of the ’50s are completely your bag! You have gorgeous fine shoulders and a delectable waist, but sumptuous larger hips and thighs. You might consider yourself bottom heavy. One of my best friends is a pear shape and she constantly laments “I’m a size 12 on the top but 16 on the bottom!” I’m always jealous of her va voom when she leaves the room. She’s truly sexy.
Just ask Kate Winslet, Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez or Selena Gomez how they feel about being pear shaped! Always glamorous, always gorgeous and always rocking it.
If you’re a pear, you need to play up your top half because your bottom half will play up for you! Gorgeous necklines, fitted bodices, showing off your shoulders, tailored cuts and structured jackets with shoulder pads will make you look and feel a million bucks!
Do you wear the same size on your top and bottom? Have a smaller bust and hips, but with little waist definition? Is your bottom enviably flat?
If you can answer yes to most of those questions, you might be a rectangle shape.
You’re in great company! Think Keira Knightly, think Kate Hudson, think Gwyneth, Natalie Portman and Reese Witherspoon.
If you’re an hourglass like me, your boobs and hips are the same width, with a narrower waist. You may find it hard to buy jeans that fit, and when you gain weight, it’s proportioned equally through your body.
That’s ok. Because Christina Hendricks, Sofia Vegera, and Scarlett Johansson also find it hard to buy jeans… for this very reason.
If you’re an hourglass, you need to pander to your smaller waist, and let your hips and boobs speak for themselves. Fitted dresses will suit you because your curves