A good coat should be three things: warm, stylish, and flattering. Different styles of coats come and go every winter, but just because they’re trendy it doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Coats are one of those items where you really need to pay attention to the fit. There aren’t really any styling tricks you can do to make it look more flattering, like a shirt, sweater, or even a dress. To avoid a trip to the tailor (or even worse - disappointment!), make sure you’re choosing a coat style that works for your body.
Your bust and hips are around the same size with a clearly defined waist.
You’ll want a structured coat that gently skims your curves. Too boxy and you’ll look like, well, a big box. Belted coats work wonders to define your waist, while wrapping you up nice and warm. Make sure you get a style that ends below your hips. You don’t want your coat to end right at the hips, as it will make them appear wider. Try to find that more or less tapers past the hips, which keeps the body looking proportionate (straight or slightly flared is ok too). Some great options are trench coats or belted wool wrap coats.
Your bust and waist are visibly narrower than your hips.
Look for styles that accentuate your shoulders and waist while elongating your legs. They will draw attention from your hips to create more of an hourglass effect. Also keep the length in mind. Avoid shorter styles that end right at the hips. Knee-length is usually a great bet. Choose styles with interesting collars and wide lapels, like a wool coat with a contrasting fur lapel or collar, or a cascading lapel. You can also choose belted coats to define your waist. If big collars and lapels aren’t your thing, try a double-breasted coat to add some volume to your torso. A classic trench coat with epaulettes or duffle coat works well.
Inverted Triangle Shaped
Your shoulders are broader than your hips, giving your torso a slightly inverted effect. You might have a more athletic build.
Upper and lower body balance is key with this body shape. You don’t want a bulky coat that makes your shoulders appear broader than they are, especially in contrast with slimmer hips and legs. Look for long, clean lines and avoid big lapels and collars. Choose a-line coats with flared silhouettes that give the illusion of curvier hips. You can also go for a loose, open fit open coat that has plenty of room for your arms and shoulders.
Your midsection is the widest part of your body, and your legs are slimmer.
You’ll want to draw attention away from your waist. Choose a roomy style that draws attention to your legs. This means finding a coat with just the right hemline. At the top of your thighs is the magic leg-elongating mark. Cocoon coats are probably the best option, but an a-line coat is also great for making the waist appear slimmer. For a sportier feel consider a lined bomber jacket.
You have a small frame and are under 5’4 (160cm).
Petite women need to find just the right amount of fabric so their coats don’t appear overly bulky. Petites are the perfect candidates for shorter styles, like a pea coat or a cropped shearling. However, longer styles like classic wool and duster coats can actually be quite flattering on petite women as long as they are well-tailored have slimmer cuts. The clean, long line create the illusion of height. Belted coats are also great, as a clearly defined waist means elongated legs. Basically, petites should choose between two extremes. Avoid knee-length options as they will cut the body in a strange place (making legs shorter than they actually are).
You have a long and lanky frame: your bust and hips are around the same size, but your waist isn’t very clearly defined.
Tall women are lucky. They have the height to pull off more voluminous shapes and don’t have to be conscious of hemlines. They can wear styles that are tricky to many other body shapes, like oversized cocoon or duster coats. If you’re looking for a more feminine style, you can go for a tailored coat with a wide hemline that will define your waist and create a curvier bottom, like a princess or swing coat.
Sometimes having a big bust can make shopping for the right coat hard. You need a style that gives you enough room for comfort without looking overly boxy. Look for an open front coat that won’t restrict you. Draped or cascading styles are excellent because they have less fabric than wrap coats with wide lapels. Choose a belted version to add definition to your waist.
Shopping for a constantly changing body is challenging to say the least. You’ll want a style that allows room for growth while remaining stylish. If you can wear it post-pregnancy, even better! Choose a belted style like a trench coat or a wrap coat. Tying the belt above your bump creates a fake waist by making an empire silhouette. A cape is another ultra stylish choice that will comfortably fit your growing baby bump.
Just because the temperatures drop, it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style. There are flattering coats out there for everyone. It just takes a bit of trial and error to find the perfect one for your body.