Look Longer and Leaner
Most of us wouldn’t mind being a couple of inches taller, or at least looking like we are, right? Well, outside of wearing sky high heels or going for body-altering surgery – there are some easy tricks you can use to make yourself look longer and leaner. One of the most straightforward is how you use color. Knowing how and when to use colors deliberately can visually elongate your frame and give you those extra imaginary inches that you’re looking for.
The simplest way to look longer and leaner is to wear the same color on the top and the bottom. This is easiest when you’re wearing a dress, of course, but is a little more interesting when you go for separates. Your top and bottom don’t need to be the exact same color or fabric – they just need to be similar in hue and tone, and you can even play with prints. Pair a dark blue cowl-neck sweater with a navy pinstripe skirt and nude heels and look what happens! The consistent color on top and bottom (paired with an always lengthening vertical stripe) help you appear taller, and a pair of nude heels will give you legs for days (as if you didn’t already know that!).
When you’re adding an ever-important third piece – like this great leather moto jacket – you can still keep the same principles in mind. Continue the color from the top that you’re wearing underneath the jacket to your pants – it maintains that ‘column of color’ look. And don’t think you need to keep your outfit based in dark neutrals – choose a fun color like this cobalt blue. As I said, exact color matches aren’t necessary. It’s more important that the colors are similar in tone, so don’t feel the need to grab your top and bottom from the same store.
Looking for another tip to make your legs look longer? Go for floor-grazing trousers, as opposed to shorter pants. Don’t get me wrong – I’m a big fan of ankle pants, since you can wear them with any heel height – but a trouser leg that extends almost to the floor gives you some extra visual inches.
The same thing works when you go for a consistent color with your third piece and your pants – it’s that ‘column of color’ idea again. In this case, a pale gray carries one color from your shoulders all the way down to your feet. Yes, your shoes can help you look taller, too – and boots or booties are perfect for this. Keeping a similar color from your pants to your shoes is the same idea as wearing nude heels against bare skin. Just one thing to watch out for – if you want to look the tallest possible, don’t show any skin between your booties and your shoes – it would cause a visual ‘break’ that you’re definitely not looking for!
Paul Julch helps busy people to streamline, organize, and update their wardrobes so they can get dressed with ease and always look stylish and feel confident. Any budget, any lifestyle, any body. His business is Urbanite|Suburbanite, and he works with clients to develop a modern, current, versatile wardrobe that expresses personal style rather than trends. Paul is based in the SF Bay Area, and remote wardrobe & style coaching is available for out-of-towners. Visit Paul’s website for more style advice, and follow him on Facebook , and Instagram to stay up to date on the best styling tips and tricks.