The hourglass body shape characterised by hip and bust measurements nearly equal in size, with a narrower waist measurement. The shoulders are slightly round and the legs are in proportion with the upper body.
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The hourglass body shape is naturally balanced with a defined waist.
The key to dressing this body shape is to follow its natural silhouette by proportionally dressing the top and bottom of the body while accentuating the waist.
You need to ensure that you don't unbalance the body frame by making it either top- or bottom-heavy.
This means maintaining the body's naturally balanced proportions without drawing attention to only the lower or upper body.
Wearing anything that draws attention to the waist helps bring out the body's balanced proportions.
Necklines must not unbalance the natural silhouette of the hourglass body by either visually widening the shoulder line or adding unnecessary volume to it (e.g., through embellishments).
Slightly rounded styles are great - such as oval, deep oval, rounded or jewel necklines. Because they are not extremely wide or narrow, they don't draw any attention to them. Lower and wider necklines - such as scoop or sweetheart necklines, will show off your bust.
If you don't want to show off your bust, avoid wide necklines, like the ones mentioned before, square and boat necks, as well as high necklines and turtlenecks as they will add volume to that area. Instead opt for slimming necklines (like a V-neckline).
A selection of flattering neckline styles:
Just like necklines, sleeves must not unbalance the natural silhouette of the hourglass body by either visually widening the shoulder or hip line or adding unnecessary volume to either.
The best type of sleeve is a fitted one. Set-in sleeves work great as they follow the body’s natural curve. If you opt for light shoulder-enhancing sleeves (such as cap sleeves), make sure to balance the extra volume out on your bottoms.
Avoid embellishments, as well as loose and wide sleeves that would draw attention to the upper body.
A selection of flattering sleeve styles:
Look for shirts that will accentuate your waist and maintain the balanced look of the hourglass shape, i.e. tops should be fitted.
They should nip in at the waist without adding bulk to your chest (unless you have a smaller bust). Belted tops and wrap tops are great to accentuate the waist.If you want to de-emphasise your curvy hips, choose tops that extend right to your hipbone.
This will help skim over the curves and make you look thinner.
Avoid big ruffles, bows or any other embellishments that would add a lot of volume to your upper body (unless you add some volume to your hips to balance it out). Also steer clear of extra bulk on the waist which would hide your waist’s natural slimness.
A selection of flattering shirt & top styles:
Like with anything else, it’s all about that waist for the hourglass body. This shape is already very proportionate, so the goal is to maintain that proportionality and to not lose it in excessive fabric.A lightweight, form-fitting sweater is the best option, especially since it highlights your curves. Belts are also great to further highlight the waist.
Lightweight fabrics and fine knits will complement your shape by highlighting your silhouette.
Avoid chunky, heavy knits and loose sweaters that hide the natural hourglass shape.
Jackets should follow the natural body line and draw in toward the waist.Form-fitting and belted jackets are great. Single breasted jackets are best since they don’t add extra bulk like double breasted jackets do.
Short jackets that stop just above your hips accentuate your curves. If you are petite, stick to shorter jackets that end at your hips.
Avoid straight and boxy styles as these do not show your waist and so make you appear heavier. Also steer clear of heavy detailing and embellishments that let you appear top-heavy.
A selection of flattering jacket styles:
Like jackets, coats should be form-fitted and tailored to follow the hourglass body's natural silhouette.
Styles that achieve this are trench coats, long coachmen coats, and also A-line coats.
To keep the silhouette uncluttered, keep coats simple without too many details or embellishments which could make you end up looking unbalanced. If you opt for a coat with embellishments around your bust, make sure you add the same amount of volume around your hips.
Puff-sleeves or epaulettes to emphasise your shoulders are great.
Avoid boxy and straight coat styles - such as empire line and drop waist coats, as they hide your natural waistline(unless they can be belted in).
A selection of flattering coat styles:
A selection of flattering jump- and playsuits: