From empire to fit and flare; midi, maxi and more, there are dresses for every shape and age. Fashion magazines and fashion bloggers all over the world are always on about telling us to love our bodies and to dress for our shape but unless you are a fashion expert with a knowledge of body types, dressing for your shape can leave you at a loss when the choices of dress designs are so vast.

While you really should own your body shape and love your silhouette, understanding your body type really does help in enhancing how you look in a dress which will lead you to have a boost in confidence. There are a number of body shapes out there and below is a list of the most common, together with tips on the best dress designs for your shape.

The petite shape

petite shape

When you are under 5’3” tall and you are not big boned, then you are considered petite. The best dresses for this shape is detail oriented pieces that will create the illusion of more volume on areas on your body such as your hips. A dress with a peplum feature is one way to create this illusion.

The slim shape

Slim Shape

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When your body shape is very slim, often straight with very little curves, then donning dresses that have a lot of ruffles and gathered pleats, drapes and twists will help you create the curves you want around your bust, hips and thigh area.

The curvy shape

curvy shape

When your body is super curvy, going for minimalist pieces that don’t have a lot of zippers, details or ruffles is a way of keeping the curves under control. Play with patterns here — go for stripes that create the illusion downwards or try asymmetrical dresses to create the illusion of more length in your body and rest assured that you don’t need things like corsets to accentuate your curves in the right way.

The hourglass shape

hourglass shape

The hourglass shape is when your shoulders and hips are similar in size. Find fit and flare dresses when you have an hourglass shape. They will give you a small waist and open up at the bottom thus flattering your shape with their ultra-feminine silhouettes.

The cone shape

The Cone shape

When you have a big bust but you have narrow hips and thin legs, then your body has more of a cone shape.  Dresses with long sleeves and a classic piece like the wrap dress are great silhouettes to flatter this body shape.

The pear shape

The Pear shape

When you are wider at the hips than on top, then you have a pear shape. Dresses with an empire waist are the best designs to bring attention to the small, top part of your body while minimizing the larger part of your body to create balance.

These are some of the ways you can accentuate your body type by choosing the best dresses for you. What other concerns do you have when it comes to wearing dresses? Share your thoughts below!

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