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How to dress 10 pounds slimmer

Updated: 12/3/2013 4:07:49 PM
© iStockphoto / Thinkstock © iStockphoto / Thinkstock

By Michele Meyer  
Life & Beauty Weekly 

Wish there was a way to get slimmer quickly? There is, and it’s closer than you think: in your closet. Wearing the right styles, fit and colors can take off pounds instantly -- without dieting (and you don’t have to wear head-to-toe black, either)! Discover how to look thinner with these dress-skinny guidelines:

Choose firm fabrics

Clothes made of stretchy-but-firm material, such as cotton and Ponte with a bit of Spandex, hold you in, says Roseanne Morrison, fashion director at retail consultancy The Doneger Group. In contrast, silks, satins and shiny fabrics reflect light, making you seem broader, while hefty tweeds and cables add too much padding.

Plunge ahead.

V-necked and scoop necklines pull eyes away from a fuller chin while appearing to lengthen your torso. Ditto for wrap dresses, chains and elongated scarves with low knots. Heart-shaped necklines help make your shoulders appear wider, in turn helping your waist look smaller.

“Reveal your clavicle. It’s a part of the body that always looks good,” says Morrison. By contrast, chokers draw eyes to your chin, while square, crew and boat necks overemphasize your upper body.

Go rich and dark.

Black is a traditional slimming color because it absorbs light and softens your curves. But other dark colors have the same effect: chocolate, wine, eggplant, charcoal, navy and even jewel tones such as ruby, emerald and sapphire. Surprisingly, prints -- marbles and wood grain -- hide bulges, as do ruffles and textures, says Julie Matos, Alyssa Milano’s stylist. Skip solid pastels and neon shades, which tend to add pounds.

Dresses with darker vertical panels at the sides and lighter shades at your center trim your torso and are totally in right now. Skirts and slacks with dark tuxedo stripes on the sides achieve the same effect. And forget that old advice about never wearing horizontal stripes. They can actually create an illusion of thinness if they’re varied, with wider dark stripes at the waist and narrow, lighter lines up top.

Choose the right sleeve length.

Go for tops with sleeves ending at the wrist, or try today’s trendy three-quarter length, says Jeff K. Kim, stylist to Rosario Dawson and Lauren Graham. “Our first instinct is to go with something super-loose, but that just looks bulky.” Avoid cap sleeves, which emphasize the plumpest part of your arms, as well as sleeveless and strapless dresses.

Skim your curves.

It sounds counter-intuitive, but baggy isn’t better. Instead, flaunt your figure with fitted dresses and nipped-in blazers. Also look for clothes cut on a bias, or with diagonal seams, which cling to the right places. “Italian movie stars of the ‘50s and ‘60s were curvy and sexy -- and men love that look.” Morrison says.

Watch your waistline.

Natural waistlines are best to maintain a slender silhouette. An empire waist can hide a rounded tummy, but it can also overemphasize your bust. “Drop waists are the worst, unless you’re a stick. Even then it can be difficult, because you look boxy,” Kim says. As for pants, stick with natural-waistline styles; low-rise cuts create muffin tops. Avoid pants with tiny pockets on the rear -- either go big, or go without.

Longer is better

Cropped tops and blazers and cuffed and Capri pants -- especially trendy full versions make you look wider. Pants should reach the ankle, or longer, while pencil skirts slim more than minis, Matos says.

Appreciate yourself.

In the end, it’s all about attitude. “When you look in the mirror, what makes you feel sexy?” Kim says. “Accentuate that, tastefully. If it’s your bust, go with a scoop neck and suggest an hourglass. If it’s your feet, wear beautiful heels and keep everything else simple. Embrace your body. Confidence is the most important way to help you look and feel your best.

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