It's easy to assume that all celebs are taller than the average individual, but looks on-screen can be deceiving (as can ultra-high heels). Indeed, there are plenty of 5'4"-and-under celebrities who qualify as petite. And while they're all certainly unique, they seem to have some sartorial commonalities. Specifically, stars over age 40, like Reese Witherspoon, Kerry Washington, and Sarah Jessica Parker, all seem to agree that there are certain trends and basics that are best avoided when you're petite.
We took the time to study some of the most stylish petite celebrities' best looks, and there is indeed plenty to glean from them if you too are petite. From what shoe style they avoid to the popular denim trend they're skipping, keep scrolling to find out what style patterns petite celebs over age 40 follow, and shop the styles they're wearing instead.
Skip: Maxi Skirts With Flats
Wear: Miniskirts With Heels
Plain and simple: If you want to look taller, show some leg. As Reese Witherspoon proves, you don't even need to show a lot of leg to lengthen your frame.
On Reese Witherspoon: Ray-Ban sunglasses; Draper James skirt; Loeffler Randall bag; Prada boots
Skip: Baggy Jeans
Wear: Skinny Jeans
Baggy jeans are undoubtedly having a moment, but we haven't seen too many over-40 celebs embrace the trend. Instead, they typically opt for skinny jeans that draw attention to their legs as much as possible.
On Keri Russell: The North Face jacket
Skip: Shoes That Cut Off at the Ankle
Wear: Low-Cut Nude Pumps
Shoes with wide straps (or short ankle booties) that stop right at the ankle will make your legs seem shorter. Instead, go for an elongating style with a pointed toe and low-cut vamp.
On Kerry Washington: Nanushka coat; Christian Louboutin shoes
Skip: Oversize Pieces
Wear: Tailored Pieces
Oversize pieces, while on trend, can overwhelm a petite person's frame, so you'll often find celebs opting for fitted, tailored styles.
WHO: Jada Pinkett Smith
Skip: Wide Belts
Wear: One-and-a-Half-Inch (or Thinner) Belts
A wide belt cuts you off at the middle, so shorter celebs usually opt for belts that are one and a half inches wide or smaller for an elongating effect.
WHO: Sarah Jessica Parker
Skip: Low-Waisted Trousers and Jeans
Wear: High-Waisted Options
Simply put, low-rise jeans and trousers will not make your legs look longer. Opt for high-waisted ones if you that's what you're trying to achieve.
On Julianne Moore: Isabel Marant Irren Sweater ($740)
Skip: Dad Sneakers
Wear: Classic Sneakers
Clunky dad sneakers can look a bit awkward when you're short, but classic sneakers won't easily overwhelm a petite frame.
On Melissa McCarthy: Nike Cortez Sneakers ($70)
Skip: Capri Leggings
Wear: 7/8 Leggings
Capri leggings cut off the legs at an awkward spot, making them appear shorter. Alternatively, 7/8-length leggings show just enough ankle to make your legs appear longer.
WHO: Reese Witherspoon
Skip: Large Handbags
Wear: Mini Bags
As we mentioned previously, oversize items will overwhelm a petite frame, and the same goes for bags. Luckily, mini bags are still very much a thing, so it shouldn't be hard to find one you love.
On Victoria Beckham: Celine sunglasses; Victoria Beckham sweater, skirt, and shoes