Curves & Confidence: How to Nail Plus-Size Dressing

Your days of boring, “safe” OOTDs are over. Work your killer sense of style with these plus-size guidelines.



If there’s one trend we’re loving in fashion right now, it’s the focus on diversity. The celebration of different types of beauty — be it by skin colour or body type — is a vital step in making fashion more inclusive and accessible. So we’re all for the rise of plus-size fashion and curvy spokespersons like Ashley Graham and Demi Lovato.

If you think that you have to skip certain trends or abide by particular style guidelines just because you’re over Size 14, it’s high time to revise that notion. Instead of avoiding certain clothes, here are some ways to look good in anything you wear, size be damned.


Ditch the Black, Embrace the White


Sure, the LBD is a classic wardrobe staple. But that doesn’t mean you should live in black. White is a fresher alternative, and can look flattering and chic too.

The key is in the fit, not the colour. Just like how black won’t make you look smaller if your clothes don’t fit properly, white won’t make you look larger if you find the right pieces. Particularly for jeans and ruched dresses, go for more structured materials — not only will they provide more support, their extra thickness will help you avoid any instances of VPL.


In Fact, Have Fun With Prints and Colour


When it comes to colour, all you have to do is make sure it complements your skin tone. You don’t even have to shy away from a stunning red number as long as it sits comfortably on you.

If you’re still uncertain about decking out in brights, start with small, vibrant details like a clutch, shoes, or jewellery before moving on to bigger pieces.

As for prints, they should be proportionate to the scale of your body — tiny prints can make you look bigger. For a more forgiving and flattering option, try watercolour prints.


Play Up Your Monochrome


Yes, monochrome can indeed streamline your figure by creating one long, lean, line. But throwing on mismatched pieces in the same shade can make you look sloppy.

Instead, experiment with different fabrics. Pair a textured item such as tweed with something flowy like chiffon rather than wearing the same boring fabric from head to toe. Nudes should also not be the exact same colour as your skin or you’ll look like you’re wearing a skin suit.


Repeat After Us: Stripes Are NOT the Enemy

Don’t simply draw the line at stripes. While thick horizontal stripes don’t do anybody any favours, there are other types of stripes that create flattering optical illusions.

Go for thinner stripes rather than thick ones, and lighter-coloured striped against a dark background always work better than the other way round.


Don’t Hide in Baggy Clothes


Trying to hide your figure in too much fabric is counter-productive and unflattering! Instead, flaunt your shape in clothing that skims your curves, not cling to them. Thanks to new technology, fabrics now have the right amount of stretch that looks sexy without make you feel uncomfortable.

If you do wear baggier clothing, team them with something fitted. For instance, a flowy trapeze top should go with slim-cut cropped pants. Volume should be on either the top or bottom, not all over. Head-to-toe volume isn’t flattering on anyone.


Incorporate Details into Your Outfit


The myth that busy details like ruffles will draw unwanted focus to “problem areas” needs to be set right.

Of course wearing a huge floral pattern on your least favourite feature is a terrible idea. What you can do instead is to make those details work for you! When properly placed, for instance, ruching helps to create some shape without adding volume. Tapered seams on the sides of shirts and jackets help give you more of a waist. Strategically placed vertical ruffles on one side of a dress or skirt elongates your figure. Ruffles are also a pretty embellishment on hems, sleeves and shirt cuffs.


Don’t Just Stick to the Basics


If it’s something you want to wear, by all means go for it. The key trick is to make the trend work for your shape. Crop top? Pair it with a high-waist pencil skirt. Colour-blocking? Try multi-toned pieces with vertical panels for a figure-friendly effect.

So many women go, “Oh, I could never wear that.” But how would you know if you haven’t tried? Don’t dismiss something that could potentially become your next wardrobe staple.


What are some of your tips to dress for your shape? What are some concerns you have? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below!