It’s easier than ever today to find what you need online, and clothes are no exception. In minutes, you can check a couple of websites to find the perfect outfit and then receive it right at your doorstep in just a few days.
While shopping online does offer its many conveniences, it also means not being able to try things on in a dressing room before you buy, which is why many stores use certain terms for body shape to help customers figure out which will be a good fit for them. By knowing your body type with the help of a body shape calculator, you can purchase clothes online with more confidence.
The Beauty of a Unique Body Shape
It’s important to make one thing clear: There is absolutely no such thing as a perfect body shape. People come in all different shapes and sizes, and body positivity is important. You are unique, and you should embrace that!
Also, even if someone has the same body shape as you, that doesn’t mean that you two will look exactly the same or fit into the same type of clothes. There are always slight differences. Body shape is just a simplified way to categorize individuals so that people (or, say, online stores) don’t have to account for all of the many variations in size out there.
The Different “Types” of Body Shape
You’ll run into the same few words used to describe body shape. Here are the main “types”:
- Straight or rectangle: When your bust, waist, and hips are all generally the same size. Your weight is more evenly distributed, and you’re not labeled as “curvy.”
- Pear: Also sometimes called triangle. When your hips are wider than your bust and waist.
- Inverted triangle: When your bust (or shoulders) is wider than your waist and hips.
- Hourglass: When your bust and hips are about the same size and wider than your waist. Your waist is well-defined.
How to Figure Out Your Body Shape
Even after reading through the different body types, you may be wondering, “What is my body shape?” As you can see in each definition, determining body mainly depends on the proportion between your bust, waist, and hips.
Using measuring tape, measure around the fullest part of your bust, the narrowest part of your waist, and then the widest point below your waist to get each of the sizes respectively. Once you have your measurements, plug them into our body shape calculator, and it’ll let you know your basic body type!
Body Shape and Shopping Online
After getting your general body type from a body shape calculator, you can start looking for clothes online that will work best with your body type.
Some online stores may flat out say that certain item of clothing is good for certain body shape. Otherwise, there are some general recommendations regarding which clothes type are more flattering for each body shape.
- Straight or rectangle: Wear a belt with dresses to create more of a waistline. Wear tops with more features at the shoulders or bust, such as ruffles. Avoid baggy clothes that don’t give your figure definition.
- Pear: Wear tops that accentuate your shoulders, such as a structured jacket or a shoulder-less top. Wear statement necklaces or scarves to shift the balance away from your hips. Avoid tight or skinny pants that make your legs look narrower.
- Inverted triangle: Wear bolder colors and design in your pants and skirts to draw more attention to your lower body. Avoid styles that draw focus to your top, such as those with big shoulder pads or big collars.
- Hourglass:Wear belts, crop tops, and V-necks to accentuate your body shape. Avoid shapeless clothing that hides your natural curves.
All this considered, your style is an expression of your personality, and you should feel comfortable wearing whatever makes you feel the most confident. These are just some general ideas for how clothing can be used to enhance or alter the appearance of your figure, and what items you might want to keep an eye out for when you shop online.
When buying clothes online, consider first using a body shape calculator to determine your general body type so that you can shop for styles that will help you look your best.
Cindy is a freelance writer and editor with previous experience in marketing as well as book publishing. Along with her content writing for a diverse portfolio of clients, Cindy’s work has been featured in Thrillist, The Points Guy, Forbes, and more.