Many fashion magazines and online shopping websites now offer clothing suggestions based on your body type. Once you know how to describe your body using their terminology, a whole new world of flattering choices opens up to you.
The first step in dressing thinner is knowing your body type. The terminology to describe women’s figures used by the fashion industry isn’t always easy to understand. Here’s an explanation of the typical descriptions so you can figure out what body type you have.
Western society has chosen an hourglass as the ideal shape for a woman’s body. That breaks down as shoulders, bust and hips having about the same width and the waist having about 75% of that width. The descriptions of all the other body types are based on comparisons to the hourglass figure.
In Dress Yourself Skinny, figures are broken down into 13 body types that are described in the way women talk about their bodies: big breasts, small breasts, wide shoulders, narrow shoulders, thick waist/tummy, short torso, long torso, wide hips, narrow hips, tall, short, straight figure and skinny. In the rest of the fashion world, women’s body types are divided into 3 or four categories.
Some stylists use the fruits for comparison: apple, pear and banana. Others use geometric polygons: triangles, circles and rectangles.
Apple/Oval/Circle – This woman has a thicker waist and tummy.
Pear/Triangle – This body type has wide hips or narrow shoulders.
Banana/Rectangle – This woman has a straight figure or thicker waist. Her waist, shoulders, bust and hips are all about the same width.
Inverted triangle – This woman has broad shoulders or narrow hips.