In short someone with broad shoulders (also called inverted triangle) will have this sort of silhouette (well mostly, unless your waist and hips are wide too). Charlene Wittstock who is the Princess of Monaco and the wife of Albert II, Prince of Monaco has broad shoulders. She was a former Olympic swimmer hence that explain her built.
However there are also women out there who are not swimmers or athletes but are gifted with natural broad shoulders. I said gifted because it’s not a bad thing. You might think it is with the ugly ‘men’s back’ but in fact women with broad shoulders look nice, elegant and attractive in the right choice of clothing because the clothes hang on to the body beautifully.
But wait, how do you know if you have broad shoulders or narrow shoulders?
If you have broad shoulders, your shoulders will be wider than your hips. As for narrow shoulders, it’s the opposite; your shoulders will be narrower than your hips.
I have broad shoulders. Here’s what I should do…
The trick to minimizing broad shoulders for women are as below:
1. Balancing the lower body with volume.
2. Soften the shoulders area.
3. Trick the observer’s eyes into looking elsewhere.
4. Add details that lure the eyes into looking up and down instead of left and right (across).
Let’s learn the tips and tricks to minimizing broad shoulders for women:
1. Wear necklines that create narrow shoulders illusion.
Go for V-neck, plunging V-neck, scoop, halter, wide straps or gathered neckline evening dresses or top. If you want to wear one shoulder top or dress, go for one that has diagonal pleating. The diagonal lines will help distract the observer’s eyes and also soften the shoulders area.
At our Paris Ciel boutique, we offer a wide range of top quality evening dresses which will cater for your broad shoulders.
3. Wear dark colour tops and light colour bottom.
Dark colour like black is known to make you look smaller because it has the slimming effect. When you wear dark tops, you’re making your upper body smaller and with light bottom, you’re making your lower body ‘heavier’ hence it helps to balance out your proportion. Don’t just stick with black, you can go for dark brown, dark purple, dark navy or dark grey for example.
5. Avoid puffy sleeves and horizontal cut sleeves.
Puffy sleeves will only make your shoulder broader and same goes with horizontal cut sleeves because you’re adding horizontal detailing (across) which adds weight to your shoulders.
6. Wear tops with raglan sleeves, dolman sleeves and kimono sleeves.
Raglan sleeves has diagonal seam from armhole to collarbone which actually works to de-emphasize your broad shoulders. Although dolman sleeves is wide at the armhole and narrow at the wrist, it is cut as part of the bodice hence there is no stitching at the armhole-shoulders area. As a result dolman sleeves has the influence of minimizing the appearance of the shoulders because dolman sleeves has the effect of sloping your shoulders. Kimono sleeves on the other hand is wide from the armhole and flares out to the wrist or elbow which help soften the shoulders.
7. Avoid shoulder pads in tops, jackets and dresses.
Shoulder pads adds volume to your shoulders. You don’t want to look like someone from the American football team now do you? Avoid wearing shoulder pads at any cost in tops, jackets and dresses. Epaulette should be a no-no too.
8. Wear embellishment and detailing on your skirt and bottom dress.
Trick the observer’s eyes into looking at your bottom half by adding embellishment and detailing like beadings, lace, applique, ruffles, prints or pleating. This will also help create more curves at your lower half.
9. Avoid embellishment and detailing on your shoulders and upper top.
Embellishment and detailing like applique, lace, bold prints and so on will only add unnecessary weight to your upper top and lure the eyes to your shoulders. Do not wear horizontal stripes or prints at all.
10. Wear narrow collars and lapels or go collarless.
Do not wear jackets, cardigans or tops with wide collars and lapels. This will only draw attention to your shoulders. Go for narrow lapels and collarless jackets, cardigans or tops instead. Mandarin collars will do too.
12. Volumized your hairstyle. Wear your hairstyle long.
Straight flat hair will only attract the eyes to your shoulders and so does short hair that falls above shoulders. Wear your hair long and volumized with hair mousse, curling iron or by perming. This will balance out your shoulders.
13. Wear coat, cardigan, jacket and pants with pockets.
To balance out your lower top and bottom, wear coat with patch pockets that end at the hips. Cropped jacket will make you look squarish and is better if you avoid it. Pants and jeans with pocket detailing are a welcome sight. Cargo pants will also help create curves for a well-proportioned body.
15. Wear skirt that flares out.
Flare skirt like A-line and pleated skirt will add volume to your lower half thus balance your overall body. Tulip skirt is recommended too. Avoid straight cut skirt as it create a slim bottom which will only attract attention to your upper half and hence shoulders.
16. Wear evening dresses that flares out and adds volume at the bottom.
Dress silhouette like A-line, ball gown, mermaid, trumpet and empire are great choice to de-emphasize your shoulders. Bias cut and shift dress are also good because it helps create appealing look at the bottom.
For more tips on choosing evening dresses for broad shoulders, check out this guide: BEST Evening Dresses Solutions for Broad Shoulders Women
Do you have broad shoulders?
What do you think is the pro of having broad shoulders? How do you style and dress your daily outfit around your wide shoulders? Share your secret tips with our readers.
Next post, let’s learn how to broaden narrow shoulders for women.