pear shaped body? How to dress for the pear shape body type

Do you have a pear shaped body? In this article, updated for spring and summer (check the latest trends here), learn how to dress for your pear shaped body type and get a complete capsule for this body shape that you can shop online!

Why it’s important to dress for your pear shaped body type

In our article on how to determine body shape we discuss several general body types.

Knowing which body type you have will help you choose more flattering outfits that will make you feel and look better.

Today, let’s see how to dress for your specific female body type – the pear shaped body.

I’ll be sharing my updated tips for the pear shaped body type, also called the triangle shaped body, with lots of tips on how to create the most flattering shapes for your body shape and ideas for clothes you can buy right now.

We also created a special capsule wardrobe for the pear body shape, which you can see at the end of this article.

What is a pear shaped body?

different body shapes | 40plusstyle.comdifferent body shapes | 40plusstyle.com

As a quick recap, you have a pear shaped body when:

  • Your hips are wider than your shoulders
  • Fat tends to accumulate on your thighs and sometimes the buttocks
  • You tend to have an elongated waist and the legs tend to be shorter in comparison to the rest of your body
  • You have a defined waist

What looks good on pear-shaped body?

In this article you’ll find lots of inspiration if you’re searching for clothes that look good on a pear-shaped body. As you’ll see, you’re aiming to balance out your silhouette, skim over the parts of your body you aren’t so keen on and show off what you do like. One idea, for example, is to opt for a top with a wide neckline and wear with an a-line skirt.

Mel wears a denim co-ord suit | 40plusstyle.comMel wears a denim co-ord suit | 40plusstyle.com

Mel @curvycartel above adds a belt to her co-ordinated outfit to show off her waist. This is often a great idea for pear shapes as you usually have a nicely defined waist.

Check out this similar shirt (another option here), pants (another option here), sandals (another option here) and belt.

Your aim when dressing your pear shaped body

We are all different and you may like to highlight or downplay different parts of your body. You may like to emphasize your curves and your hips by wearing leggings or brighter colors around your bottom section.

However, many pear shaped women like to downplay their hips. The guidelines in this article will give you some pointers on how to achieve that.

In order to downplay your hips, you will accentuate the shoulders, draw attention to your upper body and waist and elongate the legs.

Again I like to emphasize that these are general guidelines as every body is different. Perhaps you want to celebrate your hips fully and that’s totally fine too.

Always experiment with your unique shape and see what works for you.

How to dress for your pear body shape?

Women with pear shaped bodies tend to store their weight on their thighs and their legs may be heavy.

Often they have a very well proportioned upper body which is why you will see that much of the emphasis in dressing for your pear body shape is on the upper side of the body.

Is a pear shaped body the same as a spoon body shape?

While you are likely to be more familiar with the term “pear shape”, the pear shaped body is also sometimes referred to as a spoon shape.

Think about this shape as if the bowl of the spoon is where your hips are, with the handle being your torso. A spoon is also often used to describe a pear-shape with a little bit of a tummy.

Tips for dressing the pear shaped body in spring

It can be easier to dress during winter and fall for any body shape, because you can use layers in a way you can’t during the warmer months.

However, there are still plenty of ways to dress the pear shape in a flattering way during spring and summer. Read on for lots of ideas as well as well as a capsule wardrobe created especially for the pear shaped body type for this season.

How to dress the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.comHow to dress the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

Above is another look from Mel @curvycartel above. Choosing a wide neckline like a boat neck or a bardot style top can be a flattering option for pear shapes.

Steal her look with this similar dress (other options here and here) and shoes.

Famous pear shaped women

If you have a pear shaped body, you are in good company. The most famous pear shaped women include Kim Khardashian, Beyonce and Rihanna. Rather than downplaying their curvy hips, they usually highlight them!

Which garments are good for the pear shaped body?

If your goal is to downplay your hips we have some recommendations for you on the best clothing for the pear body shape.

Further on, you’ll find some specific tops, coats, dresses, skirts, pants, shoes and accessories which will work for the pear shape.

But, first, here are some top tips.

1. Draw attention to your upper body

The idea is to detract from your bottom half and draw the attention to your slim, upper body.

Choose bright colors on your top half and darker shades on your bottom half.

Boden Pom Trim Ruffle Sleeve Top | 40plusstyle.comBoden Pom Trim Ruffle Sleeve Top | 40plusstyle.com

Boden Pom Trim Ruffle Sleeve Top

2. Think about your neckline

Several types of neckline can work for you, but to create width across your shoulders to balance out your hips, look out for boat necks and Bardot styles.

You can see how the J.Crew top (below) for example draws the attention upwards and creates width at the shoulders.

J.Crew Stripe T-Shirt | 40plusstyle.comJ.Crew Stripe T-Shirt | 40plusstyle.com

J.Crew Stripe T-Shirt

3. Accessories are your friend

To draw the eye up away from your hips and thighs, choose colorful or print scarves, statement necklaces and hats.

Nordstrom Cashmere Silk Scarf | 40plusstyle.comNordstrom Cashmere Silk Scarf | 40plusstyle.com

Nordstrom Cashmere Silk Scarf

4. Go for darker shades of denim

When choosing your jeans, opt for a dark wash as these will be most flattering. Choose bootcut rather than tapered.

PAIGE Claudine Kick-Flare Jeans | 40plusstyle.comPAIGE Claudine Kick-Flare Jeans | 40plusstyle.com

PAIGE Claudine Kick-Flare Jeans

5. You will look fabulous in dresses

Pear shapes often look beautiful in a fit and flare style dress which nips in at your waist and then skims over your hips. You can see that the Boden dress (below) adds volume at the shoulders, which will balance out the hips.

Boden Joanna Cap Sleeve Wrap Dress | 40plusstyle.comBoden Joanna Cap Sleeve Wrap Dress | 40plusstyle.com

Boden Joanna Cap Sleeve Wrap Dress

Now, let’s move onto some specific ideas for each individual item of clothing.

Tops for a pear shape capsule wardrobe

  • Since your hips are a lot wider than your shoulders you want to emphasize the shoulders and widen them. So it’s actually good for pears when shoulder pads are back in fashion! Puffy shoulders will work too and are on-trend right now. Always make sure that the shoulders are properly fitted.
  • To give the impression of longer legs and a shorter torso you can wear a few layered tops with one very short layer, like a short jacket. This will break up your elongated torso and give the illusion of longer legs.
  • Wear something catchy on top. Either a catchy color or some nice detail on your top. Breast pockets, big collars or a pattern are also good. Horizontal stripes help to widen your upper body to bring it more into balance with your hips as do (subtle) shoulder pads.
  • It’s best that your tops and jackets end either above or below the widest point of your hips and bottom
  • V-line tops will draw further attention to your upper half
  • Wider necks will also work, as will horizontal strips and tops with puffed sleeves.
  • But good necklines for you are also the boat neck and the Bardot style as these will make your shoulders look wider.
  • Wear a good bra.

Below, you can see more styles that would work well for the pear shape. Look out for wrap styles, interesting necklines, structured shoulders and puff sleeves which will all draw attention upwards and balance out your hips.

Best tops for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.comBest tops for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com

Karmamia Ines Satin Wrap BlouseMisook Tie-Waist Burnount Knit TunicNation LTD Abana Drape Off the Shoulder TopRUE SOPHIE Thessa Knot Detail Long Sleeve Knit Top

Wrap top and black pants | 40plusstyle.comWrap top and black pants | 40plusstyle.com

Misook Tie-Waist Burnount Knit TunicAlice + Olivia Dylan High-Waist Wide-Leg PantsSam Edelman Bri Ballet FlatsCOACH Cassie Crossbody BagKendra Scott Grayson Drop Earrings

Best SWEATERS AND CARDIGANS for the pear shape

Even in spring and summer, you will still need some sweaters to keep you cozy on cool days. And you’ll definitely need some warm sweaters during the cooler months. Colorful styles will work very well, as will stripes, off-the-shoulder and boat or Bardot necklines.

Anything with a tie waist is also a good idea. Plus, you could take advantage of the current trend for voluminous sleeves and shoulders to create balance for your silhouette. You could also try a long cardigan to skim over your hips and create long lines.

Best sweaters and cardigans for the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.comBest sweaters and cardigans for the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

Boden Ella Long Sleeve BretonZAFUL Drawstring Ruched Knitted Crop Top  – Boden Jacquard Zip Up CardiganLL Long Open Front Cardigan

Long cardigan and jeans outfit | 40plusstyle.comLong cardigan and jeans outfit | 40plusstyle.com

LL Long Open Front CardiganJ.Crew Stripe T-ShirtPAIGE Claudine Kick-Flare JeansFLY London Yotu Wedge SandalsMICHAEL Michael Kors Ruthie Small SatchelKendra Scott Grayson Drop Earrings

Best jackets and coats for the pear shape

  • Wear structured A-shaped coats of knee length. A great coat for you is the trench. Make sure you get one with lots of details on top (like lapels on shoulders) and that it is plain from the waist down.
  • Belted blazers are also a good option for the pear shape because they draw attention to the waist. Choose one in a vibrant or paler color to your bottom half.
  • You can also use a longer top and then add a shorter jacket to give the illusion that your legs are longer than they are.
  • Long cardigans and jackets that end well below the hip can work really well too
  • Look out for styles that give the illusion that your top half is wider, to add balance, or that accentuate your waist.

If you want to, you can also think about wearing a longer layer under a shorter jacket. For instance, if you wore a long darker layer under a short jacket, the attention would be on the point the jacket ends rather than your hips.

Best jackets and coats for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.comBest jackets and coats for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com

Misook Crepe Wrap BlazerUndra Celeste Belted Wrap JacketL’AGENCE Wayne Striped Denim Crop JacketSam Edelman Cotton-Blend Belted Trench Coat

Belted jacket and jumpsuit | 40plusstyle.comBelted jacket and jumpsuit | 40plusstyle.com

Undra Celeste Belted Wrap JacketBoden Carla Linen JumpsuitVagabond Shoemakers Adison Patent Mary Jane PumpsMICHAEL Michael Kors Ruthie Small SatchelNine West Silver Necklace

For more inspiration take a look at how to wear short jackets.

Best pants and skirts for the pear body type

Here are a few tips and some examples of good pants for this body shape.

  • Wear trousers that are not too tight or light. Bootleg trousers are very good for pear shaped bodies.
  • Avoid pants that are too low on your hips. A higher rise is better.
  • You will look best if your trousers or skirt are the darkest part of your outfit.

Finding a pair of jeans for the pear shape can be tricky because of your lovely curves.

If you find a pair that fits at the hips and thighs, they can gape at the waist, and if you find a pair that fits at the waist, they can be too tight on the thighs.

It can be best to look for a pair of jeans specifically designed for a woman with curves so that they are tapered in from the hips to the waist.

The most flattering style for a pear shape is a dark wash, bootcut with a high waist.

Some of our favorite brands for jeans include:

Also take a look at the best jeans for pear shaped women

When choosing skirts, A-line skirts are a pear-shaped woman’s best friend.

When you wear a well-structured A-line skirt that emphasizes your waist, people will not even notice your wider hips.

Good brands for A-line skirts:

Best pants and skirts for the pear body type | 40plusstyle.comBest pants and skirts for the pear body type | 40plusstyle.com

PAIGE Claudine Kick-Flare JeansHudson Jeans Nico Mid-Rise Barefoot Boot-Cut JeansAlice + Olivia Dylan High-Waist Wide-Leg PantsMaje Knit Maxi Skirt

Wrap top and a-line skirt | 40plusstyle.comWrap top and a-line skirt | 40plusstyle.com

ZAFUL Drawstring Ruched Knitted Crop TopMaje Knit Maxi SkirtSam Edelman Bri Ballet FlatsCOACH Cassie Crossbody BagTagua Handmade Necklace

Best dresses and jumpsuits for pear shaped body

Women like Kim Kardashian like to emphasize their pear shape with form-fitting dresses and skirts, but most women prefer to downplay their hips and A-line dresses are perfect for doing that.

A-line dresses which fit and flare will always look good on you. Dresses with defined shoulders and a good A-line are particularly good.

Below are some of our current favorite dresses and also jumpsuits.

Dresses and jumpsuit that are perfect for pear shape bodies | 40plusstyle.comDresses and jumpsuit that are perfect for pear shape bodies | 40plusstyle.com

Misook Contrast Striped Midi-DressMICHAEL Michael Kors Satin Faux-Wrap Midi-DressBoden Joanna Cap Sleeve Wrap DressBoden Carla Linen Jumpsuit

Also, take a look at the best dresses for your body shape.

Mel in belted jumpsuit | 40plusstyle.comMel in belted jumpsuit | 40plusstyle.com

Here is another look from Mel @curvycartel above wears a jumpsuit that would flatter any body shape. For pears, the v-neck draws attention to the neckline and away from the hips.

Recreate her outfit with this similar jumpsuit (another option here), pumps and head wrap.

Best shoes and accessories for the pear shaped body

  • Use accessories to further emphasize the top part like necklaces and scarves.
  • Waist belts may look good on you as they emphasize your small waist.
  • High boots are very flattering for your legs
  • Be careful with high shoes or shoes with ankle straps as they will shorten your legs
  • Wear medium to chunky heels with a bit of height to further elongate the legs.
  • Avoid handbags that sit on the hips.
  • You may wish to avoid big bracelets as, when you have your arms by your sides, they will draw the eye to your hips.
Shoes to go with pear shape outfits | 40plusstyle.comShoes to go with pear shape outfits | 40plusstyle.com

Marc Fisher LTD Quessa Heeled SandalsFLY London Yotu Wedge SandalsSam Edelman Bri Ballet FlatsVagabond Shoemakers Adison Patent Mary Jane Pumps

Accessories to wear if you have a pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.comAccessories to wear if you have a pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

MICHAEL Michael Kors Ruthie Small SatchelCOACH Cassie Crossbody BagNine West Silver NecklaceTagua Handmade NecklaceKendra Scott Grayson Drop EarringsNordstrom Cashmere Silk Scarf

Twist neck top and bootcut jeans | 40plusstyle.comTwist neck top and bootcut jeans | 40plusstyle.com

RUE SOPHIE Thessa Knot Detail Long Sleeve Knit TopHudson Jeans Nico Mid-Rise Barefoot Boot-Cut JeansVagabond Shoemakers Adison Patent Mary Jane PumpsMICHAEL Michael Kors Ruthie Small SatchelKendra Scott Grayson Drop EarringsNordstrom Cashmere Silk Scarf

General tips on how to dress for the pear shaped body

Let’s recap on some of the most flattering options for a pear shape:

  • Belted jackets and bootcut jeans are the perfect combination.
  • Put a lot of emphasis on your top part with colorful jackets, stripes and bold accessories.
  • The A-line skirt and dress is your best friend!
  • Put emphasis on the waist if you are a pear shape.
  • Create a column of color. A long vest worn over the top of this column. can make your hips disappear.

What not to wear?

You are always able to wear anything, but if your goal is to downplay your hips, you may want to avoid the following garments. Of course if you like to highlight your curves (as Kim Khardashian does), these are the items to choose.

  • Skinny jeans (however these can be worn with some tunics, A-line long tops or long cardigans).
  • Pencil or straight skirts
  • Very short skirts
  • Tops with narrow shoulder lines
  • Pleats and pants with a lot of details
  • Shoes and booties with ankle straps, very delicate footwear and kitten heels

If you have anything further to add, let me know in the comments’ section below!

below are 9 looks featuring the pieces we used above

You can combine the clothes, shoes and accessories in myriad ways, but here are 9 ideas to get your started. All links to the items were shared above in the relevant sections.

A capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.comA capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com

SHOP THE ITEMS ABOVE HERE:



More pear shape inspiration for you

Do you need inspiration for winter outfits or want to see lots of other examples of outfits for the pear shaped body?

Below are a few older capsules we created which should provide extra inspiration for you. Please note though, that these clothes are no longer available for purchase.

A capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.comA capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com
A capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.comA capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com
A capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.comA capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com

Want to know more about how to create your own unique capsule wardrobes? Read our ultimate guide to creating a capsule wardrobe that works best for you.

How do you even out a pear-shaped body?

To recap, you want to create a balanced silhouette. That is all about streamlining your bottom half so you downplay the width of your hips and thighs, and adding width to your top half. In this way, you can create the illusion of a more balanced hourglass figure.

Is pear-shaped body attractive?

Of course. Just look at Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez, for example. It’s really up to you how much you want to show off your pear shape curves and how much you want to downplay them. And, of course, you can choose to do that differently on different days, depending on your mood.

How do you dress modestly for a pear-shaped body?

If you want to cover up, then good ideas for the pear shape are to wear dark colored wide or bootcut pants or jeans, and then add a more colorful top with a wider neckline.

Need to discover your body type?

Want to know more about women’s body types, you can discover your body type here.

From there you can browse all the other body types: apple, rectangle, hourglass, and inverted triangle

All these articles are regularly updated with helpful videos and looks for the season you are in.

How do you prefer to dress your pear shaped body?

Continue reading:

  1. How To Determine Your Body Shape
  2. Best Tops To Hide Your Belly
  3. How To Wear Wide Leg Pants
  4. How To Dress The Apple Body Shape

Like this article on how to dress the pear shaped body? Save it on Pinterest!

How to dress the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.comHow to dress the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

Feature image by Mel @curvycartel

SylviaSylvia


Sylvia is 40+style’s editor-in-chief and has been helping women find their unique style since 2011. An alumni of the School of Color and Design, she is devoted to empowering women of any age to look and feel their best. Read more about Sylvia and 40+style on this page.

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