A Guide to Finding Your Perfect Basic Dress Style

posted by Chris Valentine

If you are a simple woman who doesn’t really focus on trying to chase trends or be the most stylish woman on the block, then you probably can appreciate the idea of finding a simple dress style that flatters your body. Even for those who may want to be the center of attention or the most stylish person in the room, knowing the basic dress style that is best for your body will really help you out.

Body sizes and types are as unique as each person. However, there are a few general body shapes and compositions. This guide is based on explaining the right basic dress style based on overall body shape. Simply find the body shape description that sounds most like yours and you will find the basic dress style that will look the best on you.

Curvy Body Shapes

Often referred to as an hourglass figure, a curvy body shape will usually be large on top and bottom with a thin waist. The best basic dress style for this body shape is a wrap dress. A wrap dress, as the name suggests, wraps around the body and cinches at the waist. This style plays up your curves, while also highlighting your small waist. These dresses are usually clingy and hug the body to show off your curves.

You should stay away from any dresses that are loose fitting because they can make you look heavier than you are. You should also avoid high necklines, which will make you appear top heavy.

Round Body Shapes

If you carry your weight in your middle with slim legs, then you would be called an apple shape. The best dress for your body would be a shift dress. This style of dress hangs loosely and straight down from the shoulders. It can camouflage the tummy area. It is a great idea to show off your legs because people with an apple shape usually have nice ones.

Stay away from anything fitting around the waist. You can also pair a jacket with a dress, which will look great and hide your middle area better. Avoid clingy fabrics or tight fitting dress styles.

Slim Body Shapes

A body that is athletic without curves is often called a banana. If this sounds like you, then your best dress would be one that helps create the illusion of curves. Dresses with cut-outs at the waist can be great, like the ones on If you don’t want to show skin, though, you can go for belted dresses.

You should not wear tank dresses or dresses with too much volume. However, you will look great in dresses that have ruching.

Larger Bottom Body Shapes

If your weight is mostly in your bottom half, then you would be a pear. Pears look good in dresses that help draw attention upward. Any off-the-shoulder dress is a great choice. You can also wear fit-and-flare dresses.

Try to avoid anything too fitted on the bottom. Generally, you want to stick with fitted on top and loose on bottom styles. It will be difficult for you to wear a shift style without the top being too loose and the bottom being too tight.

Other Body Concerns

While most women fit into one of the above categories, there are those who have special concerns that trump the general body type. An example is if you have a large bust. Large busted women are best in a semi-fitted shaped dress. Wraps work nicely, too. Anything that draws the eye up should be avoided.

For those on the opposite end with a small bust, the eye should be brought up. Ruching at the bust, strapless dresses and darts are all good features in a dress that can help the small busted woman.

Ladies that are short may face many issues trying to find a good dress. It is best to avoid long dresses or dresses that hit mid-calf, which can make you look shorter. Try dresses that hit above the knee. It is also good to stick with simple designs, like a wrap dress, shirtdress or fitted style. A dress that is too busy can make you seem shorter.

Finding the right dress for your body can be challenging, but using the tips in this guide should help to make the process easier and lead you to the dress that will make you look amazing.

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