It is definitely shorts season, and believe it or not you don’t need to be a size 0 model to wear summer shorts. You do however need to think smart about what you may want to highlight and hide when wearing them, so you feel super confident in your summer shorts. Sometimes fashion dictates a certain shape or length that is deemed on-trend. This is not a trap you should fall into… Stick with what works best for you.
Look in the Mirror
Take a long, hard, and loving stare at yourself in the mirror, you rock, no matter what your size or shape. Love yourself, because if you can’t, no one else can.
Once you’ve done that, you need to identify three spots; the smallest part of your waist, this is where ideally the waistband of your shorts should sit. The widest part of your hips, you need to be aware of this spot so you can avoid highlighting it, and the thinnest part of your thigh which is where your shorts should end.
To Pocket or Not to Pocket?
It’s true, pockets do give your shorts a certain coolness. They also give you an extra inch or two around the hips, so the general rule is: if you can afford to widen the silhouette of your hips, then go for it. Otherwise, stay away from pockets, and if you already have pockets, feel free to cut the actual pocket out, and sew down the pocket flaps for a more contoured approach. One of the most important points about pockets though, closed or not, are where they actually sit. Talking specifically about pockets that slant across the hip. Where your pockets sit, is where the eye will be drawn. If you have an hourglass silhouette that you want to accentuate further, then find a pair of shorts with pockets that hit the hips. If you would rather highlight another part of your body, say your waist, for example, then make sure the pockets hit above the hips. Below the hips doesn’t actually work, because it shortens the legs…
To Drawstring or Not to Drawstring?
Drawstrings don’t usually come on their own, they generally come with some serious ruching and pleating around the waistband. So it will be a spot that will draw the eye, which can work in your favor if you would like to draw attention away from other parts of your body. For example, say you are an apple shape type, and your bottom half is smaller than your upper body. Wearing drawstring-style shorts will keep the eye firmly focused on the waist and below, which works for you! Also, let’s say you have killer abs, and really want to show them off, well the drawstring is the style for you! Drawing attending to your torso in general and highlighting all that hard work at the gym. Perhaps avoid drawstring if you are an hourglass silhouette and need to lose a few around the waist, in which case it won’t be such a great idea to show off your midriff.
You know that center pleat that often goes down the front center of your shorts, well if you find them, buy them. That’s my general rule. The center pleat will always cut your thigh in half, giving the illusion of a slimmer thigh. No matter your size or height, you will always benefit from a little slimming down of the thigh. The center pleat will also help elongate your thigh, what’s not to love?
How Wide is the Leg in Your Shorts?
The larger you are, the slimmer the leg needs to be, as the width of the shorts where they end will give the general illusion of your size. So, keep the leg slim if it is important to you to look as slim as possible. Sometimes, it’s not about size at all, but more about proportions, I am a size 4 but I always feel that my thighs need a little slimming down relative to the size of my upper body. In my case, I like to opt for a pair of shorts with a wider leg, because it gives the illusion of thinner thighs, relative to the size of the shorts. So my thighs actually appear smaller than they are, and more in proportion to my shoulders.
Back Pockets, Are they Still a Thing?
To be honest, you won’t find many shorts nowadays with back pockets they seem to be a thing of the past unless we are talking about denim shorts. If you do have the option though of back pockets then consider them if you want to accentuate your derriere. The size of the pocket will also play a part, the smaller the pocket the larger your derriere will appear relatively speaking.
Are Bike Shorts For You?
Absolutely! No matter your height or size, there are a pair of bike shorts out there for you! Follow the same rules as in point 1, identifying your strengths, etc. And then match with a long cargo jacket, open shirt or blazer for a heavenly cool look. Naturally, avoid camel toe at all risks, wearing a pantyliner should help disguise your crotch, and ensure that the waist is sitting where it is intended to, pulling them up further will accentuate your crotch, unfortunately, and create a camel toe.
What Color Are You Wearing on Top?
The color of your top actually goes a long way in defining how flattering your shots are on you. If you choose a top with strong color contrast to the shorts, say a white top and black shorts, then know that the eye will be drawn most to where the two colors meet, so the waist. If you would rather draw attention to your shoulders or thighs for example, then opting for a top in a similar color will work best for you.