Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Fat Clothes

Many women wear boxy, oversized clothing in the effort to camouflage imperfections. These styles do cover the rolls and they also add volume to your body, making you look 10, 20 or even 30 pounds heavier than you are.

Here are some common styles that make you look bigger than you are. Avoid them at all costs!

• Tops, jackets and sweaters that are longer than three inches below your hipbones look like they will camouflage your hips and bottom. However, these styles actually make those areas look wider.

• Pants with pleats at the waists or hips are supposed to camouflage your tummy area. Actually, this style adds bulk to the hips and tummy and makes these areas look bigger.

• “Skinny jeans,” leggings and bike shorts fit tightly across the hips, butt, thighs and calves. These styles of pants turn your hourglass figure into a diamond shape, with the widest part across your hips and bottom. In this case, a diamond is NOT a girl’s best friend. Yes, those pants do make your butt look big!

No matter your size or figure “flaws,” flattering clothing does exist! Here are some styles that will work way better.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Spanx Skinny Britches

Skinny Britches – a new line of lite shapers from Spanx – are whisper thin and can be layered to customize the level of compression that’s perfect for you. They come in hipsters (briefs) and shorts (bike shorts) styles. Wear one for smoothing, layer two for shaping or three for super-power!

The Imagine testers tried the shapers to see how they performed. Skinny Britches worked best for smoothing and shaping in the butt, hip and thigh areas.

Our butt/hip/thigh tester found that they fit well in the waist, tightened up the butt area and smoothed out giggles and imperfections in the hips and thighs. She loved the fit under jeans. A single layer did a great job smoothing problems below the waist.

Our tummy tester found the Britches tight in the waist, rolled down from the waist after wearing them for a couple hours and squeezed rolls out the top creating a more lumpy figure. She couldn’t recommend them for smoothing or control in the waist and torso. Rumors are that Skinny Britches will be offered in a high-waist style for smoothing the tummy and waist. Fingers crossed!!

Skinny Britches come in beautiful colors so you can spice things up and have some fun! Wear grape, red, hot pink or teal under black and darker clothing or lilac, jade or haze under lighter clothing. Here's a link for more info.

Shorts, Hipster, Shorts Layered Over Hipster

The Slimming Rainbow

Black is slimming. And there is a rainbow of other colors that give you the same effect - any deep color will give you the same slimming result as black. Any of the colors of the outer ring of the color wheel below will work.

Monochromatic Dressing

Monochromatic dressing is wearing the same color from head to toe. This strategy works with any color and creates a long lean look. The deeper the color, the thinner you will look. Try this strategy with chocolate brow, navy blue, eggplant, burgundy, olive green, etc. This technique also works when wearing clothing all in the same color as your skin tone.

Monotone Dressing

Monotone dressing is wearing a mix of colors with the same depth. Meaning, all the colors used have the same lightness or darkness. Mix black, chocolate brow, navy blue, eggplant, burgundy, charcoal gray, etc. All the deep colors look great together, so you can be as traditional or creative in your color combinations as your comfort level allows.

For the most slimming results, skip shinny fabrics like satin, solid sequins, lame, vinyl. Stick to matte fabrics (materials that don’t reflect light) such as suede, knits and twill to look your thinnest.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Get Taller To Be Thinner

Looking taller automatically makes you look thinner by stretching your size over a longer area. For example, a 145 pound woman who is 5'9" tall looks thinner than a woman who weighs the same amount but is 5' 1" tall. Here are some ways to get taller:

• Wear shoes with heels or platform soles, even ½ inch makes a difference. High or low heels, wedges, chunky or delicate heels, thick or slim platform soles are all great options. Choose styles that you like and are comfortable for you.

• Lengthen pants so the hems are about 1-inch above the floor behind your heel. This will make your legs look a lot longer. Note, you may need to have different pants for high and low heeled shoes.

• Avoid horizontal stripes at all costs! Choose fabrics with vertical or diagonal stripes. Anything from subtle pin stripes to wide bold stripes to can be flattering. Even patterns with vertical elements can work.

Just these three tips can make you appear to be 3 to 4 inches taller than you really are. That translates into making you look about one size smaller. What other ways do you have to look taller? Please share what worked for you!

Want A Thinner Waist? Get A Better Bra!

A great-fitting bra is critical to creating the illusion of a smaller waist. When your breasts droop, they make your waist look wider than it really is.

The right bra may introduce you to new letters of the alphabet. You may think you are a B, C or D and find out that you really are a AA, DD, E, F, etc. Most of the bra’s support comes from the band, so the fit of the band is just as important as the fit of the cups. The straps don't provide support, they just keep the cups closer to your body. Here's how a bra should fit:

− The cup should cover your entire breast, except for push-up styles. No breast tissue should poke out the sides or top of the cup.
− If you wear underwires, the wires should lay around your breasts, against the edges of your breast tissue (not on your ribs).
− The bra band should be level with the floor around your whole body and snug around your ribcage so it doesn’t move up or down when you move.
− The front of the bra band should sit directly under the breast tissue and flat against your body, especially when raising your arms.
Bra fitting is more art than a science. Help from a bra professional is the only way to get a bra that really fits because they understand how variances in brands, styles, materials and fabrication affect the way a bra fits. Beware of the bra fitter who uses a measuring tape. The best fitters use their instincts and experience to find the right bra.

For more bra fitting advice, check out the Boobologist.

Thank you Katie Dylewski for the bra illustrations!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Shape Wear That Shapes You The Right Way

Some underwear, body shapers and pantyhose squeeze out more than they smooth out. Often, they actually create bumps and bulges that you don’t really have. The wrong underwear and foundation garments can create back-boobs, tummy rolls, muffin-tops, visible panty lines and other random bulges. These bumps and bulges make you look heavier and more out of shape than you really are.

If you wear “shape wear” (modern girdles), opt for smoothers instead of shapers. They have lighter control so they smooth rather than squeeze. You can even buy them one size "too big" so you get a smoothing effect rather than a squeezing effect.

If you want to smooth the waist or tummy area, choose the full body shaper or high-waist bike shorts that extend from the bottom bra band to mid-thigh. This style will smooth the entire torso without creating VPLs or the dreaded bulges at the waist. If you want to smooth just the hips and bottom, opt for the regular bike shorts or capri style shaper that extends from the waist to the mid thigh or calf.