Do you have an apple body type and are you wondering what are the best dresses for apple shaped plus size? This is the right place for you.
First, I am 5’2″, and an apple body type myself. Being shorter makes it even harder to find dresses for apple body shape. If you are a plus size girl with apple shape, the challenge doubles!
I started writing about petite styling tips for short women since 2016, and my articles have touched the lives of millions since then. Based on my own fashion trial and errors and feedback from numerous petite readers, I have published a book “The Petite Style Bible“, first of its kind dedicated to petite fashion. Click here to learn more.
Over the years, I have put a lot of effort trying to figure out where to buy clothes for apple shape. Through trial and error (believe me, I have made a ton of mistakes), I finally have come up with these tips to share with other apple shaped women.
The first step of dressing for a plus size apple body type is to understand your strengths and weaknesses. I believe a great way to learn how to dress better is to observe the celebrities that have the same body type, and see what works and doesn’t work on them.
Celebrities with Plus Size Apple Body Shape
I want to talk a bit about Melissa McCarthy’s style as an inspiration for other apple shaped plus sized women. If you know her as a funny and witty comedian, you may not realize she is one of the best dressed celebs (in my opinion at least) who really knows how to make her assets work for her!
She is not the traditional tall, thin type of goddess of Hollywood. She is a petite plus size woman with apple body type, so you can imagine being both short and curvy could it make it such a challenge to find the right clothes. But she absolutely looks amazing any time she is in front of the camera and she can pull off so many different looks that always stuns me. So, I encourage you to look her up as your style inspiration.
I will also mention some of the techniques she uses to make herself look so good as a apple shaped plus size woman, so that you can also learn some of the tricks and make it work for you.
Strengths of Apple Shaped Plus Size Women
Before we get into the details of what are the best clothes for the apple shaped plus size, I want to remind you that the most important thing before you put on any outfit is to feel confident about yourself. That’s why I want to first to talk to you about your strengths.
As an apple shape plus size woman, your best assets are your beautiful round chest! I presume you must have got a ton of compliments for your curves, am I right?
Additionally, apple body type naturally have slender and firm legs (relative to the rest of the body), plus size included.
So, when you are looking for the right clothing for the apple shaped plus size, you need to keep in mind you should draw attention to your best assets and make them the focal point of the outfit!
Here is an example from Melissa Mccarthy. In this outfit, she is wearing a bright color top with deep V neck, all our attention is drawn to her pretty face and nice chest!
Weaknesses of Plus Size Apple Body Type
I don’t think you need me to tell you how frustrating it is to find clothing for the apple shaped plus size girls because you carry weight on your waist (trust me, I am an apple too so I know exactly how that feels).
Now that you know very clearly your strengths and weaknesses, it is time to find the best dresses for apple shaped plus size that accentuate your assets and camouflage your weaknesses!
How to Style to Apple Shaped Plus Size Women
One thing that is critical I want to point out is that do not try to hide your curves, instead, define them.
The best dresses I’m about to mention to you all share this in common.
Ideally, the best outfit for apple shaped plus size women should:
- Draw attention to your round breasts and nice butt
- In the meantime, it should distract away from your waistline or form the illusion of a defined waistline.
Best Dresses for Apple Shaped Plus Size
Through years of effort looking for the best outfits for apple body shape, I have found these silhouettes and design details do the best job to hide my belly and give the illusion of a slender waist. Let’s dive right in!
Structured dresses with waist definition
If there is one thing you take away after reading this post, I want you to remember one word “structure”.
The apple shaped plus size women comes across as a round shape which is fleshy vs bony. For you, it is critical that you wear structured clothing to define your features.
What does that mean?
Structured dresses means the dress is tailored carefully so that it holds its shape, and it also means the fabrics needs to be thick enough and won’t be flimsy and cheap looking.
This dress on Melissa McCarthy is a perfect example. The dress has the cut I am referring to to hold the curvy body of apple shaped plus size women in a very nice and structured way.
A line dresses
This is the most versatile silhouette that flatters all body shape universally. For apple shape plus size women, it does two things that you really need.
First, it defines your waistline without drawing attention to your stomach.
Second, it effortlessly hides your stomach because the skirt naturally flare out under your stomach.
Ruched waist dresses
Ruching is a genius design in my view, because it just makes our lives so much easier as an apple body type! The ruched waist have an amazing slimming effect, which is why every apple shaped plus size girl need to make sure you have at least a couple of them in your wardrobe.
If you ever want to wear something curve hugging, I highly recommend you go with the dress with ruching on the waist. They just make a whole world of difference in terms of hiding the stomach and make you look slimmer.
This type of dresses looks like they have a separate top and bottom, but they are actually one piece. The benefit of wearing them is it will look like you have a waist. Importantly, look out for those with the same color from top to bottom, because that will have elongating effect for short girls.
Color block dresses with light top and dark bottom
This is self explanatory why it is one of the best clothing for apple shaped plus size body which is in great need of shrinking the mid section. Like I mentioned earlier (as seen in the example of McCarthy), when you wear a lighter top with a dark bottom, you are drawing all the attention to your face and your nice chest, which is exactly what we should do as apple shaped women!
Shift dresses are normally a great choice for apple shaped plus size women, because they are tailored yet they are not body con.
I have mentioned how you should not be hiding your curves as a plus size apple, instead you should define your curves.
That sounds really hard to do, because they seem to be the opposite of common belief.
The shift dress strikes a fine balance, because it doesn’t really emphasize your curves like the formfitting dresses, but it also does not conceal your body- it still shows you got curve!
Read more about “Definition of Shift Dress and Why it works for you“.
Smocked waist dresses
Normally dresses with smocked waist band have a top that is fitted but not too tight, and the skirt part is not loose. The smocked waist forms a contrast with the top and skirt, thus creating the illusion of a waistline.
Finally, I want to talk about the belted dress. Before you go ahead and purchase a belted dress, make sure you read the rest of this first.
Since apple body shape does not have a defined waistline, it sounds like tying a belt will easily fix that. I have read famous stylists’ advice like that, but does that really work?
My honest view is in most case that can actually make things worse, especially if you have a plus size apple shaped body.
I think whoever is suggesting tying a belt as an easy fix for apple body type is probably not an apple herself. Here is why.
If you use a belt, it immediately draws all the attention to your mid section. That is exactly the OPPOSITE of what you want to do.
So, what kind of belted dresses flatter the apple shaped plus size women? In other word, how do you define the waist without drawing attention to your mid section?
Here is the key. You need to make sure the belt is the SAME color as the dress,or the same color scheme but a shade or two darker.
Like in this outfit, McCarthy is wearing a belted dress that perfectly illustrates my point. It defines her waist, without making her stomach look more obvious.
The belted dress could be a wrap dress, or it could have a line shape, as long as the belt is the same color as the dress. The key is it creates a subtle definition of your waistline.
Should you wear loose dresses?
Now, here is another popular myth. Since apple shape body, especially if you are a plus size, tend to carry most of the extra weight around the stomach, it seems like wearing a loose outfit will hide that, right?
The issue with loose dress is that it will seem obvious you are are trying to conceal something. Plus, if you are petite, a shapeless dress normally makes you look worse, because your small frame could look totally swamped.
Instead, wear a dress that is fitted but just make sure it is not too tight, especially not tight around your stomach area.
Everything else you need to know about the apple body type
I highly recommend you also read my other blog posts on how to style the apple body type: