By: Maria Leucia
I am actually so excited for today’s post because it’s all about FASHION and dressing for YOUR body type!
This topic is a little different than my usual content, but I strongly believe that body size shouldn’t matter when it comes to health and that beauty is totally subjective.
I know that fashion plays a big part in my confidence, because when I look and feel good in my clothes, I feel like I’ve got my shit together! 😉
However… after 29 years, I still don’t know what looks good on me. I still struggle every time I have to choose something other than yoga pants to put on. And shopping- oh, don’t even get me started on that one!
Well thank god for my friend and fellow Athletic Therapist who turned fashion blogger, Maria Leucia!
Maria started her blog The Pink Brunette around the same time I did, and ever since we have become super close. She always has the most amazing outfits and fashion tips on her blog and her YouTube Channel. Maria has been an inspiration to me and others as she has worked so hard to grow her blog and I am excited to see what big things are coming her way!
So today, Maria has graciously agreed to cover some BIG fashion topics in today’s post like:
What kind of body type do I have?
The Dos and Don’ts of dressing for your body type
What staples should every woman have in her closet
Shopping rules to live by
The importance of buying quality clothes
Her favourite brands
Upcoming fashion trends for 2018
Until further ado, let’s dive into the post:
How To Dress For Your Body Type – By Maria Leucia (aka, The Pink Brunette)
1. Can you go over the different body shapes there are?
Most people like to say, “you are what you wear” and what we wear depends a lot on the type of body shape we have. Women come in all different shapes and sizes, but there are 4 distinct body types that can help categorize us.
Now you might not like to hear what I have to say next, but it must be said. “Not every style trend is for every body, and that’s okay”. Yes that’s right, and trust me it’s the truth. Let’s think about it. If all of the sudden mini skirts became the new hottest trend, do you think every women out there should be rocking a mini skirt? Heck no, I mean I love my grandmother and all but I do not want to see her in a mini skirt. It’s just not appropriate.
As a women, you need to be dressing for your particular body shape and I promise you’ll be more comfortable and confident if you embrace your silhouette, rather than work against it.
Let’s break down the different body types there are. If you don’t know the shape of your body or you feel like you could fall in between two different body types, I’ll try and explain each one of them to help you figure it out.
1. Banana: With this body type all of your body parts are of the same proportion.
2. Apple: You tend to have a larger chest compared to hip region, undefined waist, rounded shoulders and slim legs.
3. Pear: You have a tiny waist and chest region and larger hips.
4. Hourglass: You have a tiny waist section and your chest and hip region are equally proportioned in size.
Now, before we move on ask yourself which body type are you?
2. Can you discuss what advantages each body type has when it comes to clothing/accessory options?
In order for us to dress with confidence we need to be dressing for our body type. Accepting your body for what it is and being able to appreciate your beauty will help you build the confidence in order to dress appropriately and confidently.
As women, we all body shame ourselves; it’s innate and sometimes we can’t help it. But from now on, when you find yourself body shaming, try and turn it around. For example, instead of saying “My hips are too big” try and change that phrase to “I love my hips, they’re gorgeous”. It will allow you to see your body in a different point of view and develop that self confidence within. That’s just my little tip for your self-confidence and self- esteem J 😉
Alright, I have put together a chart of Do’s and Don’ts for styling each of your body types. I am going to help show you the different pieces of clothing and accessories you can wear to help flatter your body figure so that you can learn to love and embrace your body!
If you have a ‘banana’ type body the number one thing you need to focus on is defining your waist! If all of your body parts are proportionate, then we need to find a way to help give your body curvature and definition. The best way to do that is by accentuating your waist by wearing clothes that help create the illusion of defining your waist and giving you curves.
If you have an ‘apple’ Body type the number one thing you want to focus on is creating your waist and highlight your cleavage. Putting on a v-neck really helps to create the illusion of a smaller chest region. The narrowing of the ‘v’ helps balance out your chest region with your hips.
If you have a pear figure the main thing you want to emphasize is drawing attention to your top with textures, push up bras, bold jewelry and bright blouses. Work your chest girl! This is a great way to bring attention to your upper body in a tasteful way by adding a beautiful statement necklace, or a fun and colourful patterned blouse.
If you have an hour-glass figure you want to focus on showing off your curves! Girl if you got it flaunt it (That’s the exact quote that I got in a fortune cookie one time, and I keep it as a daily reminder.)
3. Can you give examples/sample outfits for each body type?
When shopping for clothing the most important thing I emphasize to everyone is “you don’t know until you try it”, but for a lot of us we have a hard time putting outfits together simply because we just don’t know how. This is what I am going to show you today! I don’t know about you but I myself am a visual learner, so instead of blabbing more about what to put together, I thought I would create a collage and help make things more clear.
We all want that ‘perfect’ hourglass figure don’t we? How many times have we looked in the mirror and said “I wish I had hips”, “I wish my shoulders weren’t so boxy”, “Why isn’t my body proportionate”?
One of the most important takeaways I want to share with you here is to focus on this number one rule:
Regardless of your shape and size, you always want to focus on defining your waist.
When you define your waist you give your body shape, texture, and definition. It is a great starting point if you have a hard time finding clothes to fit your body type. We all have a waist, so we need to try and define it so we can then focus of complimenting and showing off our other fabulous body parts.
With outfit number 1 on the left we are seeing a pleated skirt and a peachy blouse that has high neck collar. Having the high neck and adding the statement necklace will help bring emphasis on your chest region (like a spoke about above in question 2). With the outfit on the right we have a gorgeous vibrant A-line red dress! Add a belt to help define your waist and instead of wearing a statement necklace, add some earrings and a fun shoe to spice it up for a night out!
Bring on the v-neck! Ladies we all want to look slim so all my apple bodied girls, v-necks are your best friend! Here we have two casual outfits here and both do a great job complimenting your body type. We have v-necks and well fitted jeans. By adding a high waist short we are elongating your legs which will help compliment your chest region by making them look more proportioned.
Outfit number 1 on the left is super casual and very chic. Adding a patterned top will help bring attention to your torso region to help balance out your hips. By adding a bell bottom jean, you will create more curvature in your legs to really compliment and show off your hips. Outfit number two is for a fun night out! Statement faux fur jackets are so in! Everyone has them, so to help bring this outfit together add a cute fitted shift dress! A shift dress will help give an illusion that your top and bottom region are equally proportioned which in turn allows you to look slimmer.
Where my curvy girls at?! With outfit number one on the left we have a fitted blazer that buttons in the waist region which will help show off your figure. We also have the cutest peplum skirt with a bit of a flare at the bottom to really show off your gorgeous hips! With outfit number two on the right but wearing a fitted maxi dress, you are leaving all the work to the fabric to tastefully outline and show off those sexy curves of yours! Be confident and show them off J.
4.What are your top 5 staple items you think every woman needs in her closet?
1. A well fitted bra
2. A well fitted pair of jeans, nothing too tight, and nothing too baggy. Especially in the butt region… not flattering at all.
3. A waist belt. Any type of belt that can be interchangeable between dresses and flowy tops, or even vests and blazers. Having a black leather belt or a brown braided belt that can be worn to help accentuate your waist is very important
4. Every woman needs a blazer that you can wear casually and dress it up as well. It’s a classy piece that never goes out of style.
5. A basic colour flat. I love a nude flat because you can literally style it with any outfit!
5. Are there any “rules” to follow when purchasing clothes/accessories that you would recommend we follow?
Every woman shops by their own rules and there isn’t necessarily a right or wrong way to shop but I will share with you some of my rules I like to follow:
1. Buy what you love and not what you think you need.
If you love something you will always find an excuse to wear it. You will be more excited to style that item and incorporate it into different outfits. Whenever you find yourself in the dressing room debating with the should-I-or-shouldn’t-I conundrum, just ask yourself one question: Do I love this? It sounds simple, but I swear it works every time! If you don’t love a black blazer and can’t find any use of it in your lifestyle or wardrobe? Then don’t buy it! If you fall in love with a pink floral blazer and can find a million more ways to style it then go for it
2. Visualize it.
Can you wear it with more than one outfit in your closet? Can you dress it up and dress it down? Can you wear it all year long or is it seasonal? These are all questions you should ask yourself to help you determine if you want to purchase that item or not. There is no wrong answer, only what you feel is right, and trust me if you love something and can visualize yourself wearing it with only one outfit in your closet, sometimes you just need to go with your gut and splurge on that item! Go for it! Who knows you might get creative and end up creating more outfits as you go
3. Always, always, always try things on!
Please follow this rule! I don’t care what the items looks like on the rack, it might look completely different on your body! As Stacey and Clinton always say from What Not To Wear “You never know until you try”. This is the number one rule I tell everyone! There’s a reason why they have dressing rooms in every store!
4. Shop throughout the year and not in bulk…
Seriously, I’m not kidding. How many of us shop once a year and then never hit the mall again? What? How? Why?… Stop! Don’t shop like this, you will constantly find yourself with nothing to wear and there is nothing worse than going shopping last minute under pressure for a wedding or an event and can’t find anything to wear! It’s brutal. Now I am not telling you to hit the mall every weekend and spend hundreds of dollars, but maybe go once a month and pick up a few items. Stores are always having sales so visit the sales rack! You might find a cute evening dress for a really good price that you could wear to your cousins wedding in a few months.
5. Dress for success.
Go to the mall knowing your going to try things on.
- Do not eat a big meal before a shopping trip, you will hate everything you try on.
- Do not go shopping in your sweats. You know how many times I’ve gone shopping with someone and they look like they just rolled out of bed and they say “Ugh, nothing looks good on me”… yeah because you don’t look good yourself (harsh, but this trick works). No one styles an evening gown with sweat socks and a messy bun!
- Always go shopping with an open mind
- Purchase clothing that makes you feel confident and beautiful
6. How important is quality when purchasing clothing or accessories?
I absolutely love shopping, I am a shopaholic and I love myself a great deal. Typically, the more expensive an item is, the better quality it is.
If I know I will use an item of clothing more than once, and it is a pretty classic piece that will last me a few years, I won’t mind spending that little extra on it.
Remember you always want to stay on budget and within your means. Every season we are constantly seeing new trends and new items of clothing that are in style, so how do we stay on budget BUT also stay trendy? Well this is the million dollar question my friends, and I have an answer for you!
Firstly, you want to make sure you have good basic pieces in your closet and if you want to splurge on your everyday basics, then I say go for it. These are the type of pieces that will be lasting you a very long time.
Now when shopping for trendy and in style pieces, I tend to not splurge a lot on them because chances are they will only last me a season or two so there is no point wasting an entire pay check on it.
Now everyone has a different budget, but one tip I will share with you when purchasing any type of trendy or in-season clothing item: make sure you are able to style that item at LEAST 3 different ways. By doing this you are getting your bank for your buck!
7. What are some of your favourite brands? And what do you look for in brands when purchasing clothing?
I am a pretty consistent shopper in the fact that I usually shop at the same stores because:
1) I like the brand
2) I know the brand is good quality
3) The brand is trendy and fit’s my style and
4) It’s cost effective
I’m going to list my favourite stores I shop at and why I love shopping there. (ps. It’s in no type of order)
H&M and Zara
The reason why I have put these two in the same category is because they both serve the same purpose for me. Firstly, they always have the trendy pieces every season. Secondly, they have the best quality of basics. I don’t shop anywhere else for my basic t-shirts, jeans, tank tops, blazers, etc because I know their quality and you cannot argue with their prices! They are so reasonably priced and some of my oldest items of clothing are from these stores.
Remember when I said you need to find a place that is cost effective for those in style trendy pieces that won’t last long, but will still serve it’s purpose? This is the place to go. Forever 21 has great pieces, especially in the summer time, if you want a cheap summer dress and some cute sunnies, this is the place to shop! Don’t bring your $300 designer sunglasses to the beach! Walk over to forever 21 and get a pair for $6. Trust me if you lose them on vacation, you won’t be that sad!
This is the number 1 place I shop for shoes. Aldo has great prices (even their sales are amazing) and their quality of shoe is amazing! I have sad shoes from Aldo that have lasted me years and I still won’t give it up. If you need a good pair of flats or a nice heel, this is the place to go for that staple item.
These places are like massive treasure chests! Sometimes they have really good items for amazing prices. I love shopping here! I have found some great pieces for good prices and lasts a long time.
Some other stores I frequently shop at:
- Steve Madden
8. What are some of your must-have, can’t-live-without staple items for spring/summer?
- Jean shorts
- Pleated skirts
- Flat sandals
- Light weight dresses ( pastel colour/ floral/ or soft pattern of small polka dots or thin stripes)
- Straw hat
- Floral/ eyelet lace blouses
- White jeans
- Small Cross body bag
9. What big clothing/accessory trends do you foresee for 2018?
Some of the biggest trends we are starting to see arise in 2018 are polka dots and puffed sleeves. In 2016-2017 pink became the new black and we saw millennial pink everywhere, but now in 2018 we are seeing lavender all over the runway. Remember that 90s trend where we thought denim on denim with fanny packs were super cool? Well guess what ladies? It’s back and all over the shelves! We are also seeing a lot more feathers and fringe, sequence, and statement straw hats!
Wow! I cannot thank you enough Maria for all that valuable info!!! This post blew me away; I learned so many great tips!
If you liked this post and Maria’s style, please make sure to give her a follow. You can find her on her website at www.thepinkbrunette.com or any of the social media channels below:
Youtube: Maria Leucia
If you liked this post, please let me know in the comments below or on social media and if you know someone else that would benefit from it, please make sure to share it with them too!
Until next time,