If you have an apple-shaped figure and carry weight on your tummy, you probably spend far too many hours searching for tops, skirts and dresses to hide it. We know you have better things to do, so we’re here to share the fashion insiders’ best kept secrets to dressing a tummy. It’s not all about hiding your stomach, either – it’s about showing off your assets. Yes, we’re talking about the enviable cleavage and killer legs your pear-shaped friends would kill for. Read on to find out how to hide a tummy and make the most of your best bits with our guide to finding the best tops, skirts, leggings and dresses for apple shapes on the high street.
1. Wrap it up
Meet your new best friend. This softly draped and gathered wrap-style dress will camoflauge your tummy whilst a delicately scooped V-neckline adds length to your upper body and a fitted skirt section acts to emphasise slim hips and thighs.
Carbon Wrap Front Jersey Dress, £49, Mint Velvet
2. Earn your stripes
Don’t shy away from patterns and prints: the larger the print, the smaller the body, according to fashion experts. Stripes can be tricky, but stick with the vertical variety and you’ll be amazed by their slimming effects. This smart-yet-relaxed style will skim over a pronounced tummy as its print lengthens. You might be tempted to opt for a longer style, but a hemline which sits on your hipline tends to be more flattering (and allows you to show off those fabulous pins!). Undo a few buttons to lengthen that torso, instead.
Split Back Stripe Shirt, £30, Simply Be
3. Scoop it up
High necklines have a shortening effect on the upper body, adding bulk to a curvier torso. Opt for a scooped, sweetheart or V-neck neckline to add length. Feeling brave? Showing a hint of cleavage will not only draw the eye up and away from belly bugbears, but make you look slimmer, too! And don’t give ‘cold shoulder’ styles the cold shoulder. They’ll show off the slimmest parts of your arms whilst concealing bingo wings and drawing attention away from your midriff.
Cold Shoulder Jumper, £70, French Connection
4. Make a statement
Didn’t think the ruffle trend was for you? Think again. Detail, volume, colour or embellishment around necklines and hemlines will draw focus away from your tummy area and towards slim shoulders, hips or legs. Try a bardot-style top with oversized ruffle detailing, or a pencil skirt with a frilled peplum-style hem.
Frill Bardot Top, £16.75, RI Plus
5. Take control
If you haven’t hopped on board the shapewear train, it’s high time you jumped on, because Spanx is no longer confining its magical waist-whittling powers to underwear. These faux leather beauties will show off slim legs whilst cinching in tummies, courtesy of their shaping waistband’s hidden power mesh. Discover how to work leather trousers into your wardrobe.
‘Ready to Wow’ Faux Leather Leggings, from £89, Spanx
6. Find your inner superhero
Belted coats and jackets can draw unwanted attention to a chunkier waistline. However, an A-line cape which sits on the hipline will disguise a tummy whilst flaunting slimmer hips and thighs.
Embellished Cape With Printed Lining, £41.40, La Redoute
7. Watch out for waterfall detailing
Button-up blazers may not be flattering, but a more fluid style with waterfall front detailing will not only look uber-chic, but lengthen and conceal, too. Team with tailored skirts and trousers, dresses or a V-neck T-shirt and jeans.
Open Front Waterfall Jacket, £39.50, Marks & Spencer
8. Get smart with scarves
Long, textured scarves will lengthen your torso whilst a pop of colour or bold print draws attention to your face.
Floral Print Scarf with necklace, £16, Simply Be
9. Accessorise all areas
Long statement drop-style earrings will draw attention away from your middle and give you a ‘longer’ overall look.
Long Earrings, £8.99, H&M
10. Bag it up
Bulky tote bags which sit high under your arm can add bulk to your midriff. Opt for a more streamlined style with a longer shoulder strap for a more flattering look.
Small Embossed Duffle Bag, £65, Karen Millen