Contrary to popular belief, all men were not “created equal”. At least not where body type is concerned. Males and females have various body types, or shapes, and these types are what help us determine what to wear.
Because they don’t have quite as much curves as women, the male body has less variations in body shape but knowing how to dress to suit these shapes is the key to locking on to your personal style.
When you’re out shopping for new clothes, you should always keep in mind that the fit of an outfit is its ultimate test. It’s not going to matter how expensive what you’re wearing is if it doesn’t fit you just right. In the same light, a cheaper item that’s right for your body shape will make you look like a million bucks (even though it cost about 10)
So, if you’re interested in learning how to dress for your body type, and how to find clothes that will flatter you, then keep on reading.
The Bulky Man
If you’re a bit bigger than the average man, then the first thing you want to do when picking out clothes is avoid anything with horizontal or diagonal stripes. Vertical stripes are better suited for you because they draw the eyes downward, elongating your silhouette and making you look slimmer.
If you’re dressing up to go out, pinstripe suits are the way to go. Pair it with a crisp, black dress shirt and dark jeans/trousers. Going for the casual look? Try a pair of dark corduroys with slim stripes.
Something else you want to avoid is double-vented jackets. Of course, you already know your jacket should always cover your posterior but, if your behind is a bit large and you don’t exactly like attention on that area, then steer clear of blazers and jackets that have two slits at the back. Go with those that are single-vented, or have no slits at all.
A lot of people believe that tight clothes will cover up imperfections and flatten out pudgy areas. However, this only works for women because they have access to control underwear. As a man, tight clothes will only draw attention to your flabby parts. Also, loose/baggy clothing will not hide your bulges but make you look even bigger.
The trick to looking slimmer is to get fitting clothes – Fitting in the sense that your clothes should lightly skim your body without hugging it.
When you wear a shirt and trousers in two extremely contrasting colors — like black and white — it will break you in half and make a large middle stand out. It’s more advisable to choose tops and bottoms that are identical or similar in color in order to create a cleaner visual impression and to instantly look 10 pounds slimmer.
Turtlenecks are a no-go if you’re a heavy-set male. V-necks are much better as they draw the eye down and create a sleeker silhouette. Also, V-necks give the illusion of a longer neck, which is awesome if you have a short neck or a double chin.
T-shirts or dress shirts with large or busy prints should be avoided like the plague. Prints like this draw attention to your upper body, which isn’t what you need if you have a large tummy you’re trying to conceal. Small prints work better with your body type.
Finally, invest in good belts. Belts nip your waistline and will make it look slimmer. Just don’t make it too tight or your belly will over hang.
The Tall and Skinny Man
If this is your body type, then you are probably constantly wary of looking like you’re withering away. To bulk up a bit, opt for horizontal stripes. A shirt with one large horizontal stripe on the chest will make your shoulders look broader and create the illusion of a perfect physique.
Monochrome may not exactly be your thing. Wearing a single solid colour from top to bottom will make you look even slimmer than you already are. What you want to do is incorporate different colours into your wardrobe; experimenting until you get the combinations that work best for you.
A Loose-fitting, untucked shirt will fly around you and make you look like a stick with a bed sheet tied to it, so you’ll definitely want to choose something more fitted instead. However, you should avoid skin-tight shirts because they will accentuate your bony upper half. Choose slim-cut shirts and learn how to layer them to fake a bit more mass.
Shoes with a round toe will make you look disproportionate. To make your shape more balanced, try square-toed shoes instead.
Skinny jeans are a no-no. Always say “yes” to a pair of straight-cut or boot-cut jeans with a long in seam. Also, remember lighter colours work best for you as they make you appear larger. So, choose clothes in light blues, grays, and pastels.
The Short Man
If you happen to be below average in height, don’t despair! The first thing you need to do is invest in square-toe shoes. Pointy shoes are only okay if you are a bit taller and the pant leg can cover most of the shoe. Also, try to buy shoes with a substantial heel. Want to give yourself some additional height? Try a pair of dress boots with longer pants to disguise the heel.
You can’t go wrong with brilliant accessories like a chain or tie that will keep people’s attention on your face not your stature. A hat is probably your best bet to add an extra inch or two.
You also want to keep in mind that large prints will overwhelm with your stature. Go with small prints like a graphic black and white.
Finally, opt for slimmer neck ties as opposed to larger ones. This prevents you from looking disproportionate.
All in all, remember fashion is not a democracy. There isn’t one specific look that automatically makes all bodies look fabulous, but there are a few rules you can follow to look your best:
– Your tailor is your best friend. No matter your body shape or size, a qualified tailor will make sure your clothes are flattering.
– Know what looks good on you and stick to that. Avoid jumping on fads and trends.
Experimenting with trendy pieces is awesome, but if you try it on and it doesn’t look good, don’t dwell on it. It’s much better to stick to what makes you look and feel great. Follow these simple guidelines, and you’ll be the best dressed guy around in no time