How To's: The Perfect Style For Your Body Shape

Choosing the right outfit has a strong impact on our style and how people perceive us - style yourself to the incorrect body shape and you could emphasise the wrong parts of your body, making yourself look entirely out of proportion.

We’re not all the same shape when it comes to our bodies. There are many dimensions from which men differ from one another – height, shoulder width, waistline, muscle mass, etc.

A little overwhelmed and confused? This guide will cover different body shapes, and how to dress to fit your specific body shape so you can be guided when choosing your ensembles.

I’ve mentioned that people come in a range of different sizes, but generally speaking we are all categorized into five different shapes: rectangle, trapezoid, inverted triangle, rectangle, triangle, or oval. These are mostly based on your shoulder and hip proportions and what silhouette they create respectively.

Which Body Shape Are You? Find Out Below:

The Rectangle

This is the simplest body shape and very well explanatory. When your shoulder width is reasonably similar to the size of your waist, then you have a rectangular shape. Rectangular people tend to be reasonably tall in height and slight of frame.

The Oval Shape

This is similar to the rectangle but typically involves a larger frame and is a lot softer around the middle. This shape doesn't limit how stylish you can be, in fact many top celebrities are rocking this body shape dapperly.

The Trapezoid

This shape looks a little like a trampoline and differs slightly to the rectangle in that the shoulders protrude out more from the body making them more prominent compared to the hips.

Rectangle, Trapezoid, Inverted Triangle, Triangle & Oval | Photo Credit: Pinterest
The Inverted Triangle

This is a slightly exaggerated form of the trapezoid. More muscular men tend to have more emphasised arms and shoulders that loom over their waist, making a triangular shape.

The Non-inverted Triangle

This is similar to the inverted triangle but rather than the shoulders protruding it’s the hips that take prominence.

The Right Style For Your Body Shape:

Now that you know your body type, it’s time to find out how you can best dress to suit it.

The Rectangle

With a rectangular body shape, the main aim is to:
  • Bring out your shoulders by opting for more structured clothing. Add some architecture to your frame with stiffer blazers or jackets that won’t sag downwards.
  • Add layers to your outfit to make your shoulder bulk out – sweat shirt in particular can come in handy here as it can easily go over shirts or polos without necessarily making you too warm.
  • Again, accessories can act as a quick fix - scarves, backpacks, etc and horizontally striped t-shirts can also give your frame a little more width.
  • Choose a jacket with a single button fastening in the centre of the torso so as to draw emphasis in that area. If your jacket has more than one button, always fasten the centremost one.
  • In order to induce more of a downward point to your shape, tight fitting trousers should be an essential wardrobe staple and act as a base to build your outfit from. Combine these with skinny shoes or trainers to further amplify the effect.

The Oval

  • Similarly to rectangular shaped gentleman, a well rounded body shape gent also needs to think of adding some structure to their clothing too.
  • Keep a good shape to your shoulders with structured jackets as this will add some definition to your shape and reduce the slope towards your middle.
  • Vertical stripes can also help to streamline your shape and can be incorporated via pinstripes on your jacket or trousers or even just a patterned t-shirt.
  • Avoid V-necks as they will make your shoulders appear smaller and give more focus to the middle. A crew neck will suit this shape perfectly well.
  • On the leg front, rather than slimming down like with the rectangles, try a looser fit so as to widen your legs and take away some of the emphasis from your middle.
  • Chinos or straight leg jeans are ideal here and can be coupled with desert boots for a great smart-casual look.

The Inverted Triangle

Strong shoulders and a comparatively small waist are what defines the inverted triangle body shape – it’s the waist and legs that should be focused more on.

  • Looser fitting items will help to widen your lower half whilst a V-neck, can reduce the appearance of your shoulders and give you a more proportioned appearance.
  • Cardigan or sweater will offer a slightly reduced shoulder appearance whilst loosely hanging to soften the contrast between shoulders and hips.
  • Straight leg or looser fitting trousers will add better dimensions to your legs and balance your proportions.

The Triangle

Much like the rectangle shape, as someone with a triangular body shape you’ve got to think about bringing out your shoulders. On top of that though, there’s also your hips that need some attention.

  • Bring out your shoulders with blazers and other structured jackets. This will give your top half some stronger lines whilst taking away some of the emphasis on your hips.
  • As well as wearing blazers, incorporating some vertical stripes into your look will help to stretch out your body shape – perhaps go for a pinstripe blazer to streamline your appearance.
  • Looser fitting trousers will widen your legs and take emphasis away from your middle. Much like the inverted triangle, a straight leg jean or chino will give you a much steadier figure.

The Trapezoid

This is the ultimate body shape to have so you’ve got virtually nothing to worry about.
  • But as an advice, polo shirts will give a clean line that perfectly suits an athletic frame. but if you’d prefer something more lightweight then a bomber jacket would be perfect.
  • For the lower part, you’re completely free to indulge in skinny jeans and statement footwear for a casual look. 
  • For a more sophisticated feel, try slimmer chinos with boat shoes.

By understanding the shape of your body you can learn how to emphasise areas of your body in a positive way whilst reduce emphasis to less flattering areas.


How To's: The Perfect Style For Your Body Shape How To's: The Perfect Style For Your Body Shape Reviewed by Ibitoye Tolulope on October 25, 2016 Rating: 5


  1. I like men in costumes and trousers and shirts. They are so elegant. I like them.

  2. Okay, although as soon as I saw those white images, I knew I had a Trapezoid, nevertheless, plus try not to make it sound as though having broad shoulders mean the end of the world for a man, cus I damn well know a lot of guys who would kill just to get broader shoulders...nice article though, even if I thing that it's the rectangular guys that really benefited from it

  3. They have the good shape and moreover their style is perfect... Like that you added these photos which illustrate the whole topic.


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