Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Fit 101: Finding Flattering Pants

I'm one of those people who notices everyone's outfit, and am quick to compliment.  What I would never do is critique, as much as the patrons of my local grocery store need me to do so.  However, since someone asked me in a comment, I decided it would be helpful (and fun!) to put together a quick review on how to pick pants that are flattering on your body.  Here are a few things to keep in mind when you shop:

Consider straight-leg instead of skinny
Even though the skinny jeans trend seems to be here to stay, many women will look thinner in a slim cut, straight leg style that doesn't cling to the leg from the knees down.  When a pant leg is tight all the way to the ankle, it helps create an upside down triangle shape on your body if your legs aren't thin.  However, a slightly looser leg is going to make your thighs stand out less and make you seem taller, while still following the trend.  This is the best way to wear white jeans if you're scared of appearing larger than you are!

Source: via Jen on Pinterest

You should be able to stick your hands in your pockets, even if it means going up a size
A lot of women clearly think that if they zip, they fit.  This could not be further from the truth, since the best way to look fat is to be squeezed into your pants.  If you cannot stand comfortably without sucking in and put a hand in your pocket (or the waistband) then sitting down is going to be really awful and you'll likely have to adjust them every time you stop moving.  (If you need some reassurance regarding that number on the label, check it out this post I wrote on the topic a while back)

Look, here's an example of pants that skim the hips but aren't too tight with horizontal wrinkles radiating from the crotch:

Source: via Haley on Pinterest

Shop to fit your hips, then worry about length
Most stores offer pants in a choice of three inseam lengths, at most.  Last time I checked, women came in a much wider variety of heights, which means most of us need to hem our pants to the perfect length.  That means that you should keep your eyes open for pairs that flatter you from waist to knees and worry about the length later.  Since I like wearing my pants cropped just above my ankle bone (to show off my shoes!) I often end up buying long length pants on clearance and then chopping off eight inches or more.  So long as you're not buying an extremely flared shape, you'll be fine!

For example, for me to have pants like that, the inseam would be 26 inches - good luck finding that in a store!

Yes, you can wear color! (if they fit)
I'm not sure why people think colored pants make them look large since we all walk around wearing blue pants and think we look great.  The challenge with finding colored pants is that the trend seems to be most available in skinny cuts, which are hard to wear.  It's common knowledge (on this blog) that jewel tones look great on everyone, and the same goes for pants if they follow the same fit guidelines you look for in the rest of your wardrobe, it just may be tougher to find them. 

Source: via Haley on Pinterest

Hopefully this was helpful.  I think I should print it out and post it at my local Tom Thumb so that the too-small jeggings wearers know that they're hurting my eyes.

What's your pants pet peeve?  Or am I the only person who has one of those? 


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