When it comes to summer and fashion, it often seems that all anyone can talk about is what your body looks like when you’re wearing as little clothing as possible. The much discussed “bikini body” is omnipresent, as are loads of wisdom nuggets and tips on how you can get one. Pish, posh—all you need to achieve the perfect bikini body is a really solid wardrobe. Yes, you can use your clothing to look more svelte—and we’ve got 30 outfits that prove it! Read on for 30 summer-perfect outfits that will make everyone look 10 pounds thinner!
Contrast right at the waist.
Aside from tucking in at your natural waist, another great trick is to wrap your waist in a brightly colored belt or sash. If you can coordinate that color with an accessory, like this stylish civilian did, all the better.
Layer an oversize crop top over a tank.
For the brave and bold at heart, there’s the trick of layering an oversize crop top over a tank. It’s a curvy gal-friendly way to wear a crop top, and it minimizes your middle without showing too much
Make your waist the focal point of your outfit.
The boxy print on this drop-waist dress draws the eye to the very center of the waist, minimizing width and making your mid-section look ultra-tiny.
A flouncy full skirt minimizes and masks.
Tuck a classic screen tee into a flouncy full skirt to minimize your mid-section and conceal the sometimes troublesome hip and thigh area.
Mix prints like a pro.
One print on top + a different one on bottom = the best optical illusion your body could have asked for.
Midline zippers are your friends.
A great A-line or sheath dress with an exposed midline zipper draws the eye to the center of your frame, making you appear instantly thinner.
When in doubt, more flounce.
There’s a common myth that adding fabric also adds the pounds—but it’s just not true. A chic, oversize sweater tucked into a voluminous skirt draws the eye to the smallest parts of your figure.
A great pair of high-waist shorts works wonders.
Another myth: shorts can never be flattering. False! A well-fitting pair that hits right at your waist, paired with a classic white button-down blouse, has a very slimming effect.
Yes, crop tops can be minimizing.
The key with a crop top is to rock one in the appropriate size. Make sure it comes down to your natural waist, and wear a high-waist skirt or trousers to match. It doesn’t hurt if it’s black, the most universally slimming color.
Don’t fear a pair of very ripped boyfriend jeans.
Ripped jeans are very on-trend right now, so look for a pair in an easy-to-wear boyfriend cut and the result will be an of-the-moment and slimming look.
Try a shift in a soft color.
The shift dress is an incredibly forgiving silhouette. It conceals what you don’t want shown, it’s playful, and a soft summer color enhances the overall effect.
Rock a classic A-line.
The A-line dress should be your best friend. The figure-grazing middle makes your waist look small, the boxy upper minimizes, and the flouncy skirt conceals.
All black everything.
When in doubt, opt for an outfit that’s entirely black from head to toe. Nothing slims more than the dark shade during summer.
Find your perfect LBD.
It’s all about the LBD! Find one in a silhouette you love, then wear it all summer long, changing it up with varying accessories. You can thank us later.
Reach for summer’s staple shade from head to toe.
Not unlike its distant cousin black, white can be equally as flattering. A well-fitting pencil skirt paired with a classic white button-up shirt makes for a slimming statement.
Yes, vertical stripes work.
It turns out your mother was right: vertical stripes really do lengthen and thin out your frame. If a full-on vertically striped look is a bit too much for you, reach for a top or pants in the print.
Color-blocking is your friend.
Pick pieces that feature large chunks of color when working with color-blocked items. They minimize what’s underneath more so than delicate, soft prints.
Toss a light jacket over your shoulders.
If your problem areas tend to reside more in your breadth—in other words, your shoulders, upper arms, and back area—tossing a light jacket across your shoulders does worlds to melt off the pounds.
Don’t shy away from geometric silhouettes.
A dress with extra-boxy shoulders and even perhaps an exaggerated hip will not make you look bigger—au contraire, it helps to make the small parts of your figure look even smaller.
Raise the hem, belt the waist.
A statement belt at your waist will be your best friend this summer; combine it with a shorter hemline to lengthen your legs, for an overall long-and-lean effect.
Throw on a shirtdress.
Every stylish woman needs a shirtdress as a staple in her wardrobe. They never go out of fashion, and their flouncy yet crisp vibe flatters every body type.
Go for a midi-length skirt.
If your legs are one of your worry zones, you’re in luck! Midi-length skirts are perennially in style, and the combination of extra fabric and a cinch at the waist never fail to flatter your figure.
Long over, short under.
For an interesting twist on the blazer trick, you can toss on a long overcoat to offset a very summer-y outfit, like a T-shirt tucked into a pair of denim cutoffs. We promise—you’ll look about a foot taller, and leaner in the process.
The peasant sleeve is a secret weapon.
Contrary to popular opinion, peasant sleeves can actually be very slimming. The trick is to reach or a midi-length option instead of a full or short sleeve.
You can go untucked.
While many slimming tricks focus on tucking your shirt in at the waist, wearing a shirt out over a skirt or shorts can also detract from your width. Make sure the top hits right at your hip points, and that the skirt or shorts are a mini-to-knee length.
Stack your jewelry.
A stack of chunky necklaces never hurt anyone���they make your shoulders look smaller by contrast. And giving the illusion that you’re top heavy isn’t necessarily a bad thing—it creates an upside-down triangle effect that makes your waist and legs look tiny.
Slick hair, big shades.
There’s a reason Nicole Richie always looks so impossibly chic—the combination of a slicked-back hair ‘do and an oversized pair of shades makes everyone look a tad bit sleeker. The duo highlights your cheekbones and sets off just about any outfit nicely.
Experiment with looking slightly undone.
A great way to slim down instantly: put on a normal outfit, then tug at it until you look just slightly rough around the edges. Untuck your shirt on one side, muss up your hair—there’s something very thinning about looking cool.
Do not be afraid of bright colors and prints.
We repeat: do not be afraid of bright colors and prints. Especially in a mini-dress or a matching set, these trends are assets. They dazzle the eye and distract it away from anything you don’t want people noticing.
Use ruffles to your advantage.
While classical wisdom holds that ruffles make people look bigger, if you utilize them correctly, they can do quite the opposite. Placed slightly above your natural waist, for example, they make that area look smaller than it really is.
Hailing from the heart of the South and cutting her teeth on the mean streets of New York, Meghan has six years of experience covering fashion, style, celebrities, culture, and human behavior. A longtime devotee of rap music, tacos, and generally perfect weather, she is excited to put down roots in Los Angeles. Her top three style staples are a good pair of cutoff shorts, virtually any kind of colorful digi-print, and a solid set of shades.
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