Coats are a winter wardrobe must if you live in a climate that gets cold. Knowing how to select the best coats to flatter your body type is a major style win.
Coats – like any other item in your closet – can be incredibly figure flattering as long as you know some essential tricks.
Follow along some of these tips to upgrade your coat wardrobe this winter season.
Women’s Body Shapes
Body shapes have long been a pain point for women, understanding your own body shape AND how to dress it in a way that is flattering is no easy task.
That’s part of the reason we like to break down tips and tricks for specific garment types.
Before we get into the nitty gritty details of coats, let’s break down each body type.
Even though women’s shapes can vary from woman to woman there are a 5 common body types that most women can find they fall under.
These body shapes include:
If You Are Petite
Knowing how to dress your body type is half the battle as a petite woman, if you’re petite this is something you’re well versed in.
As with any other garment type, there are some essential things to consider when on the hunt for the best coat to flatter your shape.
First things first, petite women are advised to avoid any coats that are oversized, really fluffy or overwhelming to the body.
While oversized fits are trendy right now, they tend to be way too much on a petite frame and end up shortening the body.
These trendy styles are still able to be worn by petites, but just ensure that they still show the outline of the body shape – this will keep from hiding the body shape.
Fit, in general, is something that should be the main focus when it comes to coats (or anything really) for petites.
Piggybacking off of fit is another big focus for petite coats and that is:
This definitely isn’t anything new for petites, coats and any type of outerwear are no exception.
If You Have an Apple Shape
An apple body shape is typically defined as a shape where the bust, waist and hip measurements are fairly close to one another.
With an apple body type, there is no defined waistline, this is a key factor to remember when selecting clothing to suit an apple shape.
Because there is not a natural waist definition, one of the most flattering ways to dress is by choosing items that create waist definition.
Fortunately, this is something that can be done fairly easily with coats.
The best coats for an apple body shape are going to be options that are cropped, meaning they rest above the widest area of the hips.
Don’t worry though, cropped isn’t the only option that’s flattering – longer coat styles that have a belt or some sort of waist definition that resembles a belt is another winning choice.
Or, you can also go longer, wear a coat that rests well below your belly (the concerned area of the apple).
If You Have an Hourglass Shape
The hourglass body shape isn’t incredibly common, but highly admired by women all around the world.
This is because an hourglass shape is proportioned meaning the bust and hip measurements are the same, if not within 2” or so of one another, with a defined waist.
Because an hourglass shape is proportioned on its own there’s a lot of flexibility around the types of coats that are flattering.
That being said, any coat style that emphasizes the naturally defined waist is going to help to reach ultimate figure flattery.
Think of coats like a belted trench coat or a puffer coat with a waist cinch.
If You Have a Pear Body Shape
Chances are if you have a pear body shape, you’re probably well aware.
If not, a pear shape is defined as a body type where the hips and thigh area are more pronounced than the top half of the body – resembling the shape of a pear.
Because of the features of the pear shape a key styling trick is bringing more of the outfit’s focus towards the top half of the body. Doing this creates the illusion of a more balanced shape.
All this to say, there are a few different coat options to try out and are sure to flatter.
First, a trench or wool coat with a defined collar – this will draw the eye up towards the face.
Another option is selecting coats with shoulder pads and minimal detailing around the waist and bottom half of the coat – again drawing attention upwards.
Last but not least, try a cropped style coat. It may sound intimating but the shorter length can be incredible for a pear shape. Not to mention it’s a great way to rock a puffer style coat for your shape.
If You Have an Inverted Triangle Shape
The inverted triangle body shape is essentially the exact opposite of the pear.
Meaning: the shoulder and bust measurements are more exaggerated than the waist and hips.
This means that the best coats are going to be options that offer minimal detailing, exaggeration and ‘puff’ style around the top half of the body – these things can lead to the shoulders appearing even more broad. Instead, keep the shoulder and chest area of coats simple and minimal and leave the fun details for the bottom half of the coats.
Longer length coats can be a favorite choice for inverted triangle shapes because they can help to create length and elongate the body overall.
Another fun option is a coat that offers a bit more volume around the waist/hips and below to give more balance to the body.
If You Have a Rectangle Body Shape
Rectangular body shapes are often also referred to as athletic or straight because there isn’t much difference between the measurements.
Similar to an apple in that sense, but different in that this body shape doesn’t typically carry weight in the midsection in the same way.
Because a rectangular shape is straighter in silhouette, this gives a lot of opportunity to give the illusion of curves utilizing various coat styles.
Again, similar to that of the apple body shape, rectangles don’t have a defined waist so any coat style that gives that illusion is a major style win.
Another really great coat style for a rectangle body shape is anything trench style AND anything with color blocking – these types of coats lengthen and move with the body which gives that curve illusion beautifully.
If You Have a Belly
Dressing a body shape with more of a midsection can be a pain point for many women, coats in particular.
If you are someone who carries more weight around the midsection (i.e. muffin top)- don’t worry, there are plenty of coats that will look incredibly flattering on your shape.
Hands down the most flattering coat style for you is going to be something with an a-line silhouette.
This silhouette isn’t just for dresses, it’s available in coats as well!
It’s a semi-loose fit that won’t have you feeling constricted but also aids in creating subtle waist definition without looking like a marshmallow.
If You Have a Big Bust
Another body type that can cause a hang up for women when it comes down to finding flattering coat options to wear: big bust.
If you have a big bust you’ve probably experienced some struggles in the coat department.
This is where long overcoats come in handy.
These style coats offer some structure so your shape won’t get lost in a sea of fabric, but aren’t too fitted causing your chest to feel crushed when wearing them.
A few other favored coat options for women with bigger busts include wrap style coats, belted options, and single breasted (stylist tip: avoid double breasted!).