A series on how to dress your body type has been the overwhelming request from our readership for years, and it took me that long to figure out how to translate it in a way that will make sense for a large audience and add real value to our site.
Happily, today, I’m kicking off our new series, How to Dress Your Body Type, with an introduction and an exercise to help you figure out your body type for once and for all.
Before we jump in, it’s important to understand that these are guidelines rather than prescribed rules. Your body type may seem obvious, or you might be more than one. Most women will find themselves somewhere in the middle of two.
The more you learn about balance and proportion, the easier it will be to dress your body in a way that highlights your favorite features and helps you feel confident. So I encourage you to follow this series for its entirety, because the more you know the better.
For the sake of keeping this straightforward, I am focusing on five universally agreed-upon body types: Rectangle (sometimes called Straight), Round, Hourglass, Pear (also called Triangle), and Inverted Triangle.
Every Thursday for the next 5 weeks we will highlight one body type in a comprehensive post. The schedule is as follows:
Pear – June 10th
Inverted Triangle – June 17th
How to Dress Your Body Type
For today’s exercise, I want you to take some time to figure out your body type. Maybe you can tell just by looking at the examples above but we like to be exact around here, so you’ll have to do some math.
How to Dress Your Body Type Week 1
Take Your Measurements
For this you need a tape measure, and a calculator.
Shoulders: Start at the tip of one shoulder wrapping the tape all the way around you.
Bust: Pull the measuring tape taut across the fullest part of your bust and around your back.
Waist: Measure the smallest part of your natural waist, just above the belly button.
Hips: Start at one hip (below the hip bone) and wrap the tape measure around the largest part of your butt.
Dressing well is about creating balance. Below is each body type and the mathematical formula to use to determine where you fall. Knowing this will make getting dressed so much easier.
A rectangle shape is defined by your shoulders and hips measuring about the same and a waist line with just a little definition.
Formula: Waist ÷ Shoulders or Bust ≥ .75
If the number is ≥ .75, than your your waist is less than 25% smaller than your shoulders or bust and you fall in the category of rectangle.
A round shape, also known as an apple shape, is defined as broad shoulders, narrow hips and no defined waist. Your waist is wider than both your shoulders and hips.
Formula: Waist ÷ Shoulders and Bust ≥ 1.05
If the number is ≥ 1.05 this means your waist is more than 5% bigger than your shoulders or bust and you fall into the round or apple body type.
An hourglass is the easiest body type to determine because your shoulders and hips are close to/or equal in measurement and you have a very defined waist. Here you have two formulas:
Formula 1: waist ÷ shoulders and bust ≤ 0.75 . In this equation, you want to use whichever measures more, either your shoulders or bust.
If the number is ≤ 0.75 then your waist is 25% smaller than your shoulder or bust
Formula 2: waist ÷ hips ≤ 0.75.Your waist is 25% smaller than your hips
If the number is ≤ 0.75 then your waist is 25% smaller than your hips.
Pear shape and Triangle are interchangeable. Simply put, your hips are wider than your shoulders, and your shoulder may be on the narrow side.
Formula: hips ÷ shoulders or bust ≥ 1.05
If the number is ≥ 1.05 then your hips are 5% bigger than your shoulders then you are considered a pear or triangle shape.
You are an Inverted Triangle if your shoulders OR bust are larger than your hips. Typically this evident when you have extra broad shoulders, but you may also fall into this category if you have a large bust and narrow hips.
Formula: shoulders or bust ÷ hips ≥ 1.05
If the number is ≥ 1.05 then your shoulder or bust is more than 5% bigger than your hips making you an inverted triangle.
What is YOUR Body Type?
Your challenge this week is to take a few minutes and do the math to see where you fall, and let us know in the comments below, are you clearly on type or do you fall in between two?
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