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Spring Fashions That Flatter

Learn how to dress 10 pounds thinner this spring without wearing black.

Proceed With Caution

  • Bold Patterns. This year's dizzying ethnic-themed prints and bold jungle patterns may be on the daring side, but they have their benefits. "Patterns can be a wonderful way to camouflage bumps and bulges on the body," Saboura says. The key is to choose patterns that are in proportion to the size of your body. Taller women can get away with larger patterns. Shorter women should stick to small or medium-sized patterns. While runway models sport bold prints from head-to-toe, full-figured women should pair a busy print with a solid. Another option is to wear monochromatic clothing and bring in the ethnic theme with a handbag, shoe, or chunky bracelet.
  • Chiffon and Sheers. Light and airy fabrics can be flattering when combined with solid foundation pieces. Saboura recommends wearing sheers over heavier fabrics that "hold the body in and give it shape." For example, try a thick, stretchy tank top under a gauzy overlay. "Structure is always a great thing for a full-figured woman. It gives her smoothness."
  • Tankinis. "The tankini is a great way of having the freedom of movement of a two-piece with the coverage of a one-piece," Saboura says. But like all swimwear, the right cut is essential. "Full-figured women with a big bust should wear a V-neck," which minimizes the top half of the body by drawing the eye down. Choose a bottom that is cut straight across and tie a sash around the waist for some camouflage. If you prefer more coverage for the butt and thighs, go for a "skirtini." "This is not your grandma's skirted bathing suit," Saboura says. Today's skirted swimsuits are sportier and sexier.

Wear What You Love.

Investing in your wardrobe is about more than keeping up with the times. "The better a woman feels she looks, the more self-esteem she has," psychologist Dee Shepherd-Look, PhD, tells WebMD. She adds that wearing attire you're comfortable with is more important than being trendy.

Saboura agrees. He says assembling a thoughtful wardrobe based on your body type can improve your figure without plastic surgery. "Clothing can be corrective if you choose correctly." But don't get hung up on the rules. If you love the way you look in a cropped jacket, never mind that it's on the "Don't" list. According to Saboura, "The most important thing is to wear what you love."

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