How to know you are short-waisted

You are short-waisted when you look relative petite when you sit and relative tall when you stand. Or in a more scientific way, determine the distance between your waist and the bottom of your bum as well as between your armpit and waist. If the latter measurement is shorter than the former, you’re short-waisted. If the opposite is true, you are long-waisted. I am long-waisted and always strive to elongate my legs.

fashionover50 mature woman in a military inspired shirt dress
Front view of military style shirt dress with wide statement belt and Great Northwest utility jacket, GNW tights and booties (all own)

Styling goal for short-waisted women

When you are short-waisted your lower body looks leggy. To balance your body you want to elongate your torso.

#fashionover40 mature woman in utility jacket
Great Northwest suede utility jacket with shirt dress from summer worn with GNW tight and Nine West camouflage pony hair booties (all own)

What to wear when you are short-waisted

Here I share with you a couple of tips that I give my short-waisted friends:

  • Go for tops that fall below the waistline with hems on your low hip.
  • Pick your belt in a color similar to your top or when your top is darker than your bottom go for a dark belt, and a light one if the opposite is true
  • Wear your belt below the waistband of your pants and skirts.
  • Go for thin belts less than 3/4 inch in width.
  • Lower the loops on your pants, skirts, dresses, jackets and coats to get the illusion of a slightly longer torso than it actually is.
  • Go for deep V-neck sweaters, unbutton the first two buttons of your shirts, go for oblong scarves and long necklaces or pendant necklaces. These items all lead the eye up away from your waist.
  • Look for tops with vertical stripes. The stripes like vertical lines and seams keep the eyes moving and provides the illusion of length.
  • Keep your shirt untucked.
  • Wear only printed tops. The break between the top and bottom provide the illusion of a longer wait than it actually is.
  • Make tunics your best friend.
  • Go for a low raise in your jeans/pants, but make the sitting test. You don’t want to expose the Y! 😉
  • Sheath dresses and shifts in knee-length are great options too.
styleover50 wide belt
Zoom-in on the belt. This belt would be too wide for a short-waisted women. While the vertical lines and the v-neck would be great, a short-waisted women should go for a belt no wider than the button and wear the belt lower than her natural waist.

What not to wear when you are short-waisted

Here is a list of items that are not flattering on short-waisted women.

  • Wide belts
  • Dresses with waistbands
  • Prints on the bottom
  • High-waisted pants or jeans
  • Cropped jackets
#over40fashion mature woman in a boxy leather coat
Boxy leather coat over the casual work outfit shown in the photos above and Camel bag (all own)

Are you short, long or “equal” waisted? What do you do to balance your body appearance? What are your body shape challenges? Let me know by email, so I can help you.

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Photos: G. Kramm

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