3 Rules for Pulling Off Body-Con at Any Age, According to a Stylist

When she’s not working with big names like Lupita Nyong’o, Jennifer Hudson, and Hilary Swank, celebrity stylist Micaela Erlanger divulges her fashion expertise in our Ask a Stylist column. Come back each week for a professional’s perspective, from the best places to source vintage to the secret to finding your most flattering jeans.

Hot topic of the week? Body-con clothing and whether there's a right age to give up the figure-forming pieces. I have a simple approach to body-con, and it comes down to these three rules. 1) Only wear something if you feel comfortable. 2) Pay attention to the silhouette. And 3) Never forget about shapewear. While I always remind my clients and friends of these guidelines, the most important thing to keep in mind is to know your body and acknowledge when you don't feel comfortable—end of story.

Keep reading for more details on each rule.

Only Wear If You’re Comfortable

The number one rule to wearing anything, whether it’s a statement trend or figure-forming dress, is to remember that confidence is key. If you feel 100% comfortable, wear it. There's no right age per say—it's a matter of confidence and feeling comfortable in your wardrobe selection.  

A fluted hemline never disappoints. 

I love this option for a special occasion, like a birthday or anniversary. 

Pay Attention to the Silhouette

Rule number two comes down to detail and keeping a close eye on the silhouette selection. It’s key to find a style that flatters your figure, whether that means opting for an off-the-shoulder option or a dress that hits below the knee, it’s important to find what works for you.

Accentuate your waistline with contrasting colors like this bold option. 

This silhouette is so flattering and hits the leg at the perfect spot. 

Don’t Forget Shapewear

Lastly, I always remind my clients to stock up on the best shapewear. Selecting the right undergarments for your body-con top or dress is a must. From a slenderizing bodysuit to your go-to pair of Spanx, take advantage of the power of great shapewear.

These are a game-changer—I promise. 

Be sure you're stocked with nude and black undergarment options. 

shop more figure-flattering pieces for any age

Style a thin turtleneck under this LBD for a stylish winter night. 

One of the biggest trends this year? Statement sleeves. 

Pants with a cropped flare flatter every body type. 

You can't go wrong with a wrap-style top. 

This slimming suit makes for a great beach-to-drinks option. 

Exposing your collarbone is a subtle way to show some skin. 

Elegant gold earrings never go out of style. 

Layer a sleek leather moto jacket over this for your next date night. 

Wear this with simple skinny jeans and low ankle boots for a casual weekend look. 

Submit a style question for Erlanger in the box below, and check back next Sunday to see if she answers yours!

Opening Image: Collage Vintage