How do you dress your body when you feel like nothing fits right? You feel like your legs are too short, your waist is too wide, your arms are too big, and your butt is too small. Seriously, I’ve heard it all from both men and women regarding body image. When clothing doesn’t fit right, we blame our bodies when the clothing options are the problem.
Most people feel like there is something wrong with their body shape and that they won’t be able to find clothing, but I’m here to remind you that no perfect or ideal body exists. Every person’s body is unique; that’s what makes you, you! I’ve worked with clients of all body types, sizes, and ages, and all budgets have many options to find what works best for you.
When a client feels discouraged about how they look, I want to do everything I can to show them that their body is perfect the way it is, and finding clothing that fits well, will make a difference. I remember working with a client with beautiful Michelle Obama arms; she definitely did her push-ups but didn’t feel good about them. She had a smaller chest and felt her arms made her look too masculine, so when we worked together, I found short-sleeved options that complimented her arms so she could feel confident in her tops.
Finding out how to dress your body has more to do with becoming aware of your own body’s uniqueness and less with following a body type chart. As a personal stylist, I’m always looking to get in tune with each client’s challenges and goals to serve them best.
If dressing yourself has been a challenge lately, here are three tips to help you dress for your body and feel confident:
1. Accept your body
Accepting your body doesn’t mean you love every part of your body because the reality is that working through your body image is a lifetime process. Accepting your body is seeing it for what it is without judgment.
It’s saying, “Hey, my arms are full, and I know I can’t wear shirts that have elastic on the arms.” Or acknowledging, “My pants are tight because my waist got bigger, I need to find a pant that fits well instead of torturing myself for why the pants are too small.”
When we don’t accept our bodies, we go into a spiral because we want to keep dressing as we did years ago. We go back to wanting to wear our favorite 10-year designer jeans or expensive dresses. But why would you want to make something work that doesn’t? Why would you try to fit into something from your past when you’re in a different place anyway?
Dress your body for where you are now. Don’t feel you have to be 10 pounds lighter, get the tummy tuck, or get a personal trainer. What if you invested in yourself today to feel better and continue doing the work with time if that’s a big goal for you. I’m not saying at all to stay comfortable if you aren’t living in a healthy place; I’m saying that you can take care of yourself right now and once you lose the weight, update with new pieces again. In that time, you might feel differently about your style and body and switch up what you wear.
Love your body that gets you up in the morning and is with you throughout your day.
2. Find out what doesn’t fit your body anymore
Your closet has the answers for you; it’s the key to finding out what you need to stop and start wearing.You want to look for clothing that makes you feel good when wearing it and not self-conscious; it should fit your body and take you effortlessly throughout your day. No pulling or tugging included.
Look in your closet and find what you have to let go. Ask yourself questions like, do you have to let go of your extra small tops because they are too tight around your chest and shoulders now? Do you have to stop wearing mid-rise jeans because they fit funny on your waist?
When you edit down your closet from pieces that don’t serve you anymore, you’ll find space and possibilities to fill it in with things that feel good to you. When you keep items in your closet that don’t fit your body, it’s a constant reminder that your body has changed. This closet maintenance is done every six months to a year to ensure you keep it condensed to clothing that fits you best. Along the way, you might make some purchases you love and some purchases you tried out that didn’t work.
When working with clients, I take notes on everything! I call this The Style Tracker, which is available for you to purchase. It’s the best way to stay organized on what to avoid and look for later when you shop. The Style Tracker is a worksheet that you can print and take notes on anytime you try on pieces in your closet, make new purchases online, and try on clothes in the fitting room. It gives you a place to keep all your notes together to make your style discovery clear. You can purchase The Style Tracker here.
3. Find 3 new pieces
After you’ve gone through the first two steps, it’s time to shop! Instead of buying one new piece, purchase 3-5 to mix and match with clothes you already have and put an outfit that works together.
Try on clothing in the correct size, don’t try to make certain styles or brands fit if they don’t, move on and work through items that will better suit you.
It’s so important to listen to my clients’ insecurities and make sure they know just how perfect they are where they are at the moment. I find the suitable styles, colors, and cuts that make them forget about any imperfections and see themselves in a new light.
When you do go out and venture on your own, don’t be discouraged by pieces that don’t fit well. Don’t give up on trying something new. I promise you there’s clothing that fits you right, and it takes a few tries. If you keep track of what you try and what doesn’t work, it makes the process easier.
If you want to get on the waitlist of my online program, go to myclosetedit.com/refresh, you are taken step by step through finding your style, where to shop, and building outfits. Plus, you get a personal shopper along the way to help you.
Build a style and wardrobe that truly reflects you,