How To Find The Best Clothes For an Inverted Triangle Shaped Body

Are you top heavy? Do you have broad shoulders? You're probably an inverted triangle.


You have an inverted triangle shaped body if your shoulders are wider than your hips, or if your bust measurement is larger than your hip measurement. Either way, you tend to look a bit top-heavy thanks to athletic shoulders or an ample bust. If you're an inverted triangle, most likely your hips are on the narrow side and you have relatively slender legs.

Inverted Triangle shaped body

Since your measurements are uneven, you're probably pretty sure that you have an inverted triangle shaped body.

But if you're on the fence, our handy video can help you figure it out.

Your Mission, Should You Choose To Accept It

Balance. You're looking for balance - to make your hips look as wide as your shoulders or bust. You're going to do this by adding volume to your lower half.

You also want to avoid any embellishments that add volume to your top. Stylist Karen Brunger says, "Avoid pockets and details in the bust and shoulder area." But details such as pockets and pleats are great for your lower half.

Remember, you're not trying to make your body look like it's a different shape. You're just drawing attention away from your unbalanced proportions and putting the spotlight on YOU.

Lauren Ralph Lauren Plus Size A-Line Skirt, Macy's, $57.99
Lauren Ralph Lauren Plus Size A-Line Skirt, Macy's, $57.99

A-Line Dresses that Fit & Flare

Cynthia Schames, AbbeyPost's founder says, "an A-line silhouette works well for this body type since the volume balances out wider shoulders." We've got a gaggle of A-line dresses at AbbeyPost, but not all of them are flattering on an inverted triangle shaped body. To wear an A-line successfully, you'll want to choose a weightier fabric (like our Ponte knit) to make sure that the skirt hangs properly on your relatively narrow hips. A great choice would be the Kelly dress.

Cassaundra, the mastermind behind AbbeyPost's styles, explains: "An A-line silhouette is not good for an inverted triangle when the fabric has a lot of drape (like jersey or charmeuse). Knits like Ponte that have structure can work, but a jersey will fall straight from the bust and have nowhere to land, so your hips and waist are lost."

Stylist Karima Renee of Skinny Minority suggests that you "try dresses with fuller skirts to create balance between the shoulders, bust, and hips." Cynthia Schames agrees, "The key to inverted triangles wearing an A-line well is that you must belt it! The Kelly dress is a great choice, as it has a fit & flare silhouette that’s ultra-flattering."

AbbeyPost Kelly A-Line Dress with Obi Belt, $185
AbbeyPost Kelly A-Line Dress with Obi Belt, $185.

Sheath Dresses

Sheath dresses also work nicely with a triangle shaped body, even though they don't add extra volume to the hips. Cynthia Schames says,

"A straight sheath like the Sutton works well on many inverted triangle shapes because they tend to have flatter bellies. The sheath accentuates your narrower hips, while the v-neck adds some vertical interest to the neckline and breaks up the horizontal line of broader shoulders.

"Similarly, a sheath wrap, such as the Holly, keeps the top line of the body spare while highlighting a slimmer waist and hip, and the length lets you really show off great legs. It's also a little more forgiving in the belly area than a straight sheath."

Since sheath dresses don't add bulk to your hips, make extra sure to keep your top half simple and sleek. Skip the jacket or scarf and try wearing a long necklace.

inverted triangle
AbbeyPost Sutton Sheath Dress, $155.
AbbeyPost Plus Size Wrap Dress
AbbeyPost Holly Wrap Dress, $145

Empire-Waist Dresses

Empire-waist dresses, like Cassandra, add volume to your lower half, so they're great for women with an inverted triangle body shape. It's obvious: a triangle shaped dress on an inverted triangle shaped body creates balance.

Go as long and flowing as you like, though don't forget that shorter lengths will show off your great legs!

The AbbeyPost Cassandra Empire Waist dress, $185.
AbbeyPost Cassandra Empire Waist dress, $185.
Soprano Plus Size Cap-Sleeve Pleated Empire Dress, Macy's  $43.99
Soprano Plus Size Cap-Sleeve Pleated Empire Dress, Macy's $43.99


You can wear pretty much any neckline, except for boat-necks, which will emphasize your broad shoulders. "High necklines, such as a turtleneck, make the bust appear larger, and are best avoided," according to stylist Karen Brunger of The Style Institute.

Cynthia Schames says that, "scoop necks, V-necks and even halters and strapless," are fair game for you. Karima Renee explains that halter tops work on inverted triangles because, "It's the exact opposite of their shape; narrow at the top and fuller at the bottom. The fuller size the woman, the thicker the straps of the halter should be."

Charter Club Plus Size Three-Quarter-Sleeve Pima-Cotton Tee, Macy's $22.98
Charter Club Plus Size Three-Quarter-Sleeve Pima-Cotton Tee, Macy's $22.98

Hem Length

You've got slender legs, so show them off with shorter skirts. Go for hems that hit you right above the knee or higher.

Halogen Pleated Soft Linen Skirt (Plus Size), Nordstrom, $68
Halogen Pleated Soft Linen Skirt (Plus Size), Nordstrom, $68


Jackets are a great way to modify your silhouette, while adding an accent to a dress. A jacket can make a dress business-like enough for the office, or casual enough for lunch with friends. Karen Brunger says that inverted triangles should look for, "One-button jackets, with the button close to the waist." The jacket flares out below the button, adding volume to your hip area. She also says you should, "avoid collars and lapels – they just add bulk where none is needed."

AbbeyPost Shala Cap Sleeve Maxi Dress, $165
AbbeyPost Shala Cap Sleeve Maxi Dress, $165

And do I need to tell you to avoid shoulder pads and puffy sleeves? You already have strong, powerful shoulders - the added volume would be too much.

Vince Camuto Single Button Blazer (Plus Size), Nordstrom, $98.40
Vince Camuto Single Button Blazer (Plus Size), Nordstrom, $98.40


Accessorizes are like the frosting on a cake, so have fun with them. Karen Brunger suggests that you, "Accessorize below the waist, rather than above." That means colored tights, eye-catching shoes and fabulous belts.

That doesn't mean you can't wear any jewelry. Karima Renee says, "Long layered necklaces are still on trend and look great on Inverted Triangle shapes. Even when wearing a crew neck top, it forces the eye down away from the shoulders. It's all about creating a longer leaner illusion."


BaubleBar Bold Beaded Stands, $40


Your inverted triangle shaped body gives you a top-heavy, athletic build. But you're not stuck wearing sporty clothes. Pay attention to fabrics, and there are quite a few dress styles that will look great on you.

Inspired? Shop the perfect styles for your body shape on AbbeyPost today!


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