When it comes to clothing, the secret to looking effortlessly stylish lies in understanding and embracing your unique body shape. From pear to hourglass, apple to rectangle, each body type comes with its own set of proportions and features that deserve to be celebrated.
Your unique body shape is like a blueprint that defines your natural proportions. And it plays a significant role in determining how different styles and silhouettes will flatter your figure. There are five main body shapes: Apple, pear, rectangle, hourglass and inverted triangle. Knowing your shape allows you to make informed fashion choices that embrace your overall look.
You may be wondering… but how do I know what my body shape is? We have pulled together a guide to help you identify your body shape and tips on how to dress for success.
Before we dive into the guide, remember to forget size - this isn’t about that and never should be but about your shape and how to embrace it.
Let’s dive in! Grab your tape measure, it’s time to use numbers to help identify your shape. We will be using fashion expert Bradley Bayou’s calculation system to determine your shape.
In order to get a clear reading make sure to measure the four main areas of your body including the shoulders, bust, waist and hips, don’t forget to jot these numbers down as they will come in handy later.

Measuring tips:

Shoulders: Getting an accurate measurement might require an extra pair of hands. Begin by measuring from the tip of one shoulder and wrap around. Place the measuring tape snugly around your shoulders, ensuring it’s positioned high enough that it’s almost on the verge of slipping off.
Bust: Gently extend the measuring tape over the fullest area of your bust and around your back. Ensure the tape measure is snug but not overly tight.
Waist: Measure the smallest part of your natural waist, just above your belly button.
Hips: Start at one hip point, just below the hip bone and wrap the tape measure around the widest part of your butt.
Now that you have your measurements, it’s time to use those numbers to determine your body shape.
You may find that your measurements place you in more than one body shape category, don’t worry this can happen. If this is the case you should consider both body shapes when shopping and seeing what feels right.
Don’t forget this guide is to be used as an indicator to help embody your shape.

Apple Shape:

You are an apple shape if your bust is your largest measurement, at least 5% biggest than your other measurements. Your shoulders and waist are also wider than your hips. Similar to an inverted-triangle shape, your bust and shoulders make more of a v shape but your wait is wider.

Apple-shaped bodies can often appear top-heavy due to a full chest and upper body with little to no waist definition. To balance your upper body, choose clothes that add curves and fullness to your lower half. With an apple shape body, it’s all about embracing your curves and creating balance.


Pear Shape:

You are a pear shape if your hips are more than 5% bigger than your shoulders or bust (calculate this by taking your hip measurement and dividing it by your shoulder or bust).

(Calculation example: You are a pear shape if your shoulders are 36 inches and your hips are 37.75 inches or longer).

The pear-shaped body can often seem heavier on the bottom which creates an imbalance with your upper half. The key to dressing this body shape is to take attention from your hips and draw it upwards to the upper body and defined waist instead.


The Rectangle Shape:

Your body is a rectangular shape if your waist is less than 25% smaller than your shoulders or bust. Calculate your waist measurement divided by your shoulders or bust. Your shoulders, bust and hip measurements should be within 5% of each other. To check if they are within 5%: Take the largest of the three measurements (this is usually your shoulders) and call this measurement T and for the other two measurements call them Y and Z. Calculate by multiplying t by 0.95. If Y and Z are greater than the results of T times 0.95, then your shoulders, bust and hips are within 5% of each other.

Ladies with a rectangular shape have a streamlined look as both the upper and lower body create a balanced silhouette. If this is your body shape, the focus should be to define your waist by breaking up the rectangular shape.


The Hourglass Shape:

You are an hourglass shape if your waist is at least 25% smaller than your shoulders or bust (calculate by using your waist measurement and divide it by your shoulders and bust) and your waist is at least 25% smaller than your hips (calculate your waist measurement divided by your hips) and your shoulder and hip measurements are within 5% of each other.

(Calculation example: You are an hourglass if your shoulders and hips measure 36 inches and your waist is 27 inches or smaller).

Those of you with an hourglass body shape naturally have a balanced look with a defined waist. The key with this body shape is to embrace your natural silhouette by proportionally dressing the top and bottom half of your body, whilst accentuating your waist. Avoid baggy clothes and opt for pieces that enhance your curves.


The Inverted Triangle:

You are an inverted triangle if your shoulders or bust measurement is more than 5% bigger than your hip measurements. Calculate this but taking your shoulder or bust measurement and dividing it by your hip measurements.

(calculation example: You are an inverted triangle if your shoulders are 36 inches and your hips are 34.25 inches or smaller.)

Opposite to the pear shape, the inverted triangle shape is heavier on top due to the wider shoulder. When dressing your shape, we recommend focusing on creating balance with your broader shoulders, check and back with a narrower low body.


Your body shape is a beautiful and unique part of who you are. Embracing it and understanding how to dress for it is the key to unlocking your full style potential. By celebrating your proportions and making mindful fashion choices, you can confidently step out in an outfit that makes you feel fabulous. Remember the perfect outfit isn’t about fitting a mold; it’s about enhancing what makes you, you.


So rock that gilet, embrace those jeans and let your style shine with the knowledge of your body shape as your ultimate fashion guide.


If you are still struggling to identify your body shape, contact us today and book a virtual shopping call with Jo who will help you identify your shape and provide personal recommendations based on your shape, style and likes.

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