How to Choose Flattering Dresses for Your Body Type

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How to Choose Flattering Dresses for Your Body Type

When you start looking for a flattering dress, you need to be on the lookout for dresses that suit your silhouette, proportions, and shape. Choosing a casual or formal dress according to these criteria can have a dramatic impact on your look. One of the most important things to do before going shopping for a new dress is to determine your body type. This allows you to learn which areas of your body you should focus on for a spectacular effect. There are several shapes to the female body, and clothing designers have embraced these types and are now designing for the variety of body types. By learning more about different body types and the most flattering dress styles for each of them, you can be sure you make the right choice every time.

Tips for Determining Your Body Type

Not every dress is flattering for every body type, so you should start the search for the perfect dress by first assessing the shape of your body. In order to do so, stand in front of a mirror and try to evaluate your body objectively. By determining your body type correctly, you can easily learn what style of dress best enhances your features.

To determine the shape of your body, you should pay attention to the areas where you tend to hold more weight. Each of the main body types is prone to holding weight in a particular area, such as the stomach or the thighs. By evaluating this, you can determine the narrowest and the largest parts of your body. You should then consider the basic features of the main female body types and compare yours to them in order to determine which shape is closest to your body.

Choosing Flattering Dresses for Your Specific Body Type

The main body type categories are apple, pear, hourglass, rectangle, inverted triangle, and round. Most women belong to one of these types. The main characteristics of each of them are available below, along with tips for choosing flattering types of dresses for each body type. 

Apple Body Type

Women with an apple body type have a full bust, a wide torso, and often broad shoulders. They tend to gain weight towards the waistline, but in many cases they may have slim legs, arms, and hips. As a rule of thumb, the upper body is significantly larger than the lower body. This is probably the most challenging body type when it comes to choosing a dress. You should avoid anything that accentuates your broad shoulders, including heavily decorated necklines, off-the shoulder dresses, and boat necklines. Puffy sleeves and embellished bodices are not ideal choices either. If you have an apple body type, you should opt for a fuller skirt that can balance your bust. As for fabrics, try to choose fluid materials and avoid stiff ones. Another good choice is a dress with an empire waist that can draw attention away from the fuller top.

Pear Body Type

This is perhaps the most common body type, and it is essentially the opposite of an apple shape. Women who are pear-shaped are noticeably larger on bottom than they are on top. They tend to gain weight on the hips and thighs, hence the name of the body shape. If you have a pear-shaped body, your bottom is curvy, but your shoulders may be narrow. A-line dresses and ball gowns are the best choices for this body shape. They are especially a good idea for women with slim waistlines. Boat necklines and thin straps are not a good idea, and you should also steer clear of dresses that have gathered fabric at the waistline as these accentuate the hips. You can also try to add some more volume to the bust by opting for different kinds of embellishments.

Hourglass Body Type

Even though an hourglass figure is considered ideal by many women, the truth is this very proportional body type is not very common. If you have been blessed with it, you are lucky because it is very easy to find dresses. As this is a proportional, yet curvy figure, there is nothing to hide and nothing to emphasise. You can choose to enhance your natural curves by opting for corset bodices and two-piece dresses. Strapless dresses are also a good choice. The only thing that may not work well with hourglass figures is heavily beaded dresses because they may make you look fuller than you actually are.

Rectangle Body Type

If you have an athletic body and very few curves, you probably have a rectangle body shape. In many cases, women with this body type have small chest sizes, and weight gain occurs evenly throughout the body. A flattering dress for a woman with a rectangular body shape is one that adds the appearance of curves. Empire dresses and ball gowns can achieve this. Dresses with belts, ornaments, and ribbons at the waistline are other options for a flattering dress for this body type.

Inverted Triangle Body Type

The inverted triangle body shape is characterised by a larger size on the top half than on the bottom. In most cases, there is little definition between waist and hips, and the hips and bottom are rather flat. In order to create a visual balance, you should keep the top half of the body simple and keep all the embellishments and details that create volume confined to the lower half. Details such as a wide belt may create the illusion of a waist.

Round Body Type

Women who have a round body shape tend to have large breasts and quite a lot of weight around their stomachs. With this body type, weight gain occurs around the waist, and the trick for finding a flattering dress for this body type is to look for slimming styles that disguise the thick waist. A-line and empire dresses are good choices because they can help you hide the waist and hips. Thick straps are a good idea, as is a deep V-neck.

How to Buy Flattering Dresses on eBay

Regardless of the body type you have, finding the perfect dress for a given occasion can be a daunting task. By choosing to buy a dress on eBay, you gain easy access to thousands of styles available in all sizes, colours, and fabrics, many of which are suitable for all budgets. Start your search by typing the terms that best describe your favourite kind of dress into eBay's search bar. For instance, if you are looking for an A-line dress, type this term into the search bar. You can then browse through the several pages of results until you find your ideal dress. Additionally, there are plenty of excellent deals available on the website, so you may be able to save a significant amount of money as well when shopping on eBay.


Different women have different body types, and for this reason, not all dresses are flattering for each individual. In order to be able to find a dress that emphasises the best parts of your body and conceals its flaws, it is important to know your body shape. After determining this, you should also give some thought to the styles of dresses that are suitable for your shape and the styles that are not.

There are countless styles of dresses available in local clothing stores and online on eBay. If you want to try items on, shop locally, but if you want to browse the largest possible selection of options, eBay is a great choice. You can  use the site's intuitive search system to find the perfect dress for any occasion with just a few clicks.

Women's Dress|A-line Dress|Empire Dress|Ball Gown|Ladies' Dress

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