If you’ve been following along with our series of body shape blogs, you might have been waiting for this one. This week, we’re taking a closer look at the hourglass body and what exactly it means. Plus, we’ll be looking at which fashion pieces hourglass body shapes should be looking out for to best flatter their shapes and make the most of those beautiful natural curves.  

We’ve been taking our time going through each of the most common body shapes to give every one of our readers the chance to learn a little more about what the body shapes are and how to choose fashion pieces that really work for your shape. We’ve looked at pear body shapes, apple and triangle so far, with just rectangle shapes to go. So, if you don't have an hourglass figure and you’ve been patiently waiting for our rectangle blog, stay tuned, it’s coming very soon, we promise!

When we talk about body shapes, we never want to put women in definite boxes. So, try not to think of yourself as categorizing your body type and then having to adhere to strict rules. It’s more about different shapes that we can associate with to help us better understand the different proportions of our bodies, how are upper body and lower body can balance each other, and then working out which fashion pieces work best for these shapes.  

First, let’s take a quick look at how to actually know what your body shape is, just in case you’re not quite sure.

How to Know What Your Body Type Is

As we mentioned before, when we’re talking about body shapes, everyone is different and no one fits perfectly and absolutely into just one category as our bodies change and develop all our lives.

However, take a look below at each of the five most common body shapes and try to work out where you most feel represented to make a start.

Looking at the descriptions of each body shape, you’ll see that it is very much down to how the proportions of your body work with each other. You can read into much more detail about this with the help of the fashion pros at Who What Wear and their body shape calculator if you’re really not sure, but below we’ve summarized to make it super straightforward.

  • If your shoulders measure more than your hips, then you’re probably a triangle shape.
  • If your hips measure quite a bit more than your shoulders, then you’re most likely a pear shape.
  • If your shoulder measurements are very similar to your hip measurements but you have a much smaller waist, then you’re most likely an hourglass shape.
  • If your bust and stomach measurements are bigger than your shoulder and hip measurements, then you’re probably an apple shape.
  • If your measurements are fairly similar when it comes to shoulder, bust, waist, and hips, then you’re very likely a rectangle shape.

So, we’ve made it super simple. Depending on how the proportions of your body work, you will be closer to a certain shape, which in turn, means the hard job is done and now you can just soak in all the fashion tips and get started on a new, ultra-flattering wardrobe for the season!

Am I an Hourglass Shape?

If you’ve read our body shapes summary and you’re pretty sure you’re in the right place and you have hourglass proportions, then well done, you’ve made it! If you think it might not be quite your style, check out our other body shape blogs to find the perfect tips for you.

So, sounds like you’re an hourglass shape? Your shoulders and hip measurements are pretty similar and you have a defined waist that really stands out when you’re rocking something bodycon. Right?

Hourglass shapes are often said to be the most sought-after body type for women, thanks to icons, such as Marilyn Monroe, Jessica Rabbit, and even Kim Kardashian West. But if you think these measurements relate to you but unlike them, you don’t feel super glam and love your curves from day to day, this is the place to get started loving yourself. With help from Shop It To Me, obviously.  

For hourglass shapes, if you don’t nail the silhouettes and fit, you can end up feeling larger than you are, frumpy, and the opposite of that glamorous figure want to be. So, sit back and have a read through our top tips on how to dress an hourglass shape and hopefully we can inspire you to try and few new styles and shake things up, this season.

Top Fashion Tips for How to Dress an Hourglass Shape Figure

So now you’re sure you’re an hourglass shape, let’s look at our stylist’s top fashion tips to dress to flatter and feel fabulous.

Always Always Always Define That Narrow Waist

Your waist is defined and small, so you want to draw attention to it as much as possible. Choosing oversized fits and looser styles will give the illusion that your whole body is the same size as your bust and hips, which are your largest measurements, and can even make you look a little top heavy. Instead, choosing options that really hug the waist give you a sleeker, more fitted and more expensive overall look.

Whether this means opting for tighter, more sculpting silhouettes or whether it simply means adding a cinching wide belt to your outfit is totally up to you and depends on the kind of look you like to opt for. If you’re not keen on super tight bodycon and like a more modest overall look, use belts to create shape while leaving the rest of your outfit slightly looser.

Elongate the Legs with Everything High Waist

Low-rise will do nothing for an hourglass shape. High waist everything is now your best friend and go-to. Straight skirts, A-line dresses, boot cut jeans, tailored trousers, whatever you love to wear day to day, a high, fitted waist (preferably with a wide waistband) will sculpt your shape and accentuate your fantastic waistline. A chic button-down paired with high waist bottoms is your go-to office style for an hourglass body type.

Style Secret: By choosing trousers and skirts that hit at the hip, you’re drawing attention to a wider area. Choosing high waist pieces draws the eye directly to your smaller waist and, just like that, it’s a more flattering head to toe look. Plus, a pencil style knee-length skirt sculpts all the way down the thigh, which is perfect for this shape.

Wrap Yourself Up

Wrap dresses flatter every shape and create curves where they don’t even exist so imagine how much they flatter an hourglass shape.

Dresses and tops that wrap at the waist, assist on cinching in your shape and creating that feminine flow of curves. Leopard print, simple black or statement pops of color, don’t stick to dark colors, whatever you like, grab a wrap style.

Show Off Some Skin

Hourglass shapes tend to really suit V neck tops and dresses and even more so, plunging necklines. So, if you’re headed to date night or a night out with friends, why not try a saucy neckline that shows off just a little extra skin?

Not only does this really flatter if your shoulders are on the broader side, but it also adds to the femininity of your shape.

Choose ¾ Length Sleeves

Stay away from boxy styles when it comes to jackets because they will just add bulk to your frame. Smooth lines and tailored finishes are perfect for an hourglass and the length of the sleeve is an added bonus to draw attention to the waist.

¾ length sleeves bring the eye to your smallest point, the waist, discreetly but effectively. Style simply with t-shirts or staple fitted tops.

Get the Denim Right

Denim is a pretty big part of most women’s lives and makes up a staple part of many people’s lower half wardrobes. So, it’s important to get it right. If you spend lots of your time in jeans, this is a great point of focus for your next shopping trip.

As mentioned before, it’s all about embracing the high waist jeans as low-rise will do you no favors. Mid-rise can be a comfortable alternative if you don’t like super high for day to day, just make sure they come up and over the hip bones. Full-length or ankle length is the perfect choice to continue elongating the legs and giving you a taller, sleeker look. Any more cropped than ankle length and you’ll start to feel ever so slightly out of proportion.  

Hourglass shapes can wear most shaped jeans comfortably and flatteringly, from skinny jeans to wide-leg or boyfriend, but straight leg and boot cut tend to work best.

Key Pieces for an Hourglass Shape Wardrobe

Now we've gone through some of our top tips for an hourglass shape, we've picked out our top key pieces to look out for, all chosen from Shop It To Me, which means huge discounts on all high street and designer labels. Just sign up, add your preferences, favorite brands, sizes and you'll receive emails catered to your chosen pieces as soon as they hit the sale.

Here are just some of the pieces you can find on Shop It To Me perfect for an hourglass shape.

  • Belts
  • High Waist Pencil Skirts
  • Wrap Dresses
  • V-Neck Tops & Dresses
  • ¾ Length Sleeve Jackets and Tops
  • High Waist Jeans

With our top fashion tips on how to dress for your hourglass shape, along with our top key pieces to look out for to flatter your body, we hope we’ve made shopping for your figure a little more straightforward. When it comes to shopping for your shape, it’s all about recognizing the proportions of your body and getting to grips with the shapes, fabrics, and fits that work best so that eventually absolutely everything in your wardrobe makes you feel a million dollars. For an hourglass, that's all about showing off your small waist and finding the form-fitting pieces that give you the sleekest silhouette.

It also makes it easier the next time you head on over to Shop It To Me for your fashion bargain fix, when you actually know exactly what to look out for. Whether you’re updating your workwear wardrobe, trying out a new casual style or searching for the perfect dress for that upcoming summer wedding, you now know the shapes that are going to look so good with our top style tips.

We’re nearly now complete with our series of blogs about body shapes but don’t worry, we’ll be back with more fashion tips, styling advice and top picks of all the latest designer and high street deals available on Shop It To Me. Straight to your inbox, we send your favorite brands, your favorite pieces and in your size. Sound good, right? Sign up today.