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Style tips that don’t require a whole new wardrobe

Balance proportions

How to actually do it: Obviously, you want to show off what you’re proud of—toned arms or a slim waist. It’s the downplaying of less beloved parts that’s tricky. One tactic? Add opposite volume, like wearing wide-leg trousers to offset a heavier upper half that’s wearing something fitted. “The object is to even yourself out. “So, avoid anything too oversize or you’ll look bigger.”

Another idea: Distraction. If you’re pear shaped, wear forgettable black pants, then bring the focus upward with a bold scarf.

Wear trends in an age appropriate

How to actually do it: Odds are, there’s a grown-up version of the style du jour. Take crop tops: To avoid revealing skin, pair a shirt that hits at the navel with a high waisted skirt—or a longer top with a crop top over it. “It gives you a similar look. Bottom line: “You never want to seem like you’re uncomfortable with your age and trying to look younger.

The right bra makes you look slimmer

How to actually do it: “Where your breasts sit on your chest makes a big difference in how clothes fit. In other words, if you’re wearing a bra that fits properly, there will be no sagging or bulging—and that means your silhouette will look trimmer from every angle. The target is midway between your elbows and shoulders. You’ve scored a match when “the front center panel of the bra lays flat, there’s no wrinkling or gapping in the cups, and the bra is not hiking up or creating bulges. If you can squeeze just two fingers under the band and it still feels snug, that’s the perfect fit.

Show skin selectively

How to actually do it: “Don’t give people too many things to look at all at once,” says Priscilla Mensah. If you’re wearing a lowcut dress, focus on the cleavage.”

The concept applies to fit as well: A body-hugging dress is better with a more sensible neckline and hem, whereas a skirt that hits a few inches above the knee won’t raise eyebrows if it’s flared rather than tight. Develop a signature style. How to actually do it: “Figure out your go-to, foolproof looks,” says designer, then seek out variations on that theme. Stumped? Picture the outfits that you feel most comfortable in. Or ask people close to you what you look best in. Once you’ve zeroed in on what works, find different takes. “I gravitate toward bodycon dresses and skirts, so I’ll do that style, then a silk version, or a jeans with shirts.” Whenever you feel the need to talk yourself into things, that’s a red flag that you shouldn’t buy them. If you have doubts in the dressing room, it may help to take a photo of yourself in the item, ‘It’s much more accurate than looking in the mirror.’

 

Written by Priscilla Mensah

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