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  • Writer's pictureLaura Miller

Prattville, AL Maternity, Newborn and Family Photography: Tips Look and Feel Your Best in Photos

Comparison is the stealer of joy. But let's face it, we've all been there. We compare the way we look, they way we dress, our success or failures, the way we parent, our homes, our cars....the list is endless. Because we do this we find so many things "wrong" with ourselves, so many things we want to change.

I know almost everyone has had thoughts like these before! I've been there too (especially after having 3 kiddos)!

We all want to look and feel our best, especially when we are in front of the camera. So today I want to share some tips on choosing clothing that is flattering to your body shape and skin tone and emphasizes your strong points to help you look amazing and feel more confident.

We are all wonderfully created to be different, to be individual. There is not another you out there! So be bold, be confident, be YOU!!

For the Ladies

Women with a straight or athletic frame want to look for clothing that defines a waistline with belts, piping, seems, etc. Clothing that flares below the waist such as flared skirts, A-line dresses, and wide legged trousers add the illusion of curves. Skinny jeans look great on this shape as well paired with a waist-defining top such as a peplum or fitted blazer. Avoid clothing that is too flowy or loose around the waist. Tops that draw attention to sleeves and the bust with ruffles, decorative necklines, etc. will also make the waist look smaller and create more of an hourglass shape.

For the pear shape ladies with more weight on the bottom half of their frames, wearing clothing with more visual weight and structure on the top half will balance the bottom half and create a hourglass shape. Clothing that draws attention to and defines the upper half is how we add this visual weight to the upper body. Tops with puff sleeves, boatnecks, structured shoulders, cowlnecks, and v-necks will do the trick, just to name a few. Accentuate the waist with a fitted and defined waistline. Utilize straight leg trousers to balance the wide hips and thighs. Pants with pockets are important because pants without pockets magnify the booty—which is not a bad thing— but again, balancing the overall figure is the most flattering because the eye naturally looks for and desires balance. Our eyes are funny like that.

Women with hourglass figures want clothing that flows with and works with their curves. Boxy styles such as cropped, wide tops or boxy dresses are not flattering for this body type. High-waisted pants and pencil skirts will hit at the waistline and accentuate the waist, and these items look beautiful and flattering paired with fitted blouses. Fitted tops and button ups as well as tops and dresses made of stretchy knit fabrics will accentuate your shape rather than hide it.

Women with a strawberry shape, broad shoulders and/or buxom bust lines, don’t want to amplify or draw attention to the dominant upper body. Button ups are a problem piece for this body type because—as buxom figured women will attest—button up shirts all too often leave gaping holes between the buttons covering the chest area. Button ups will typically only fit the widest point and hang on the other areas. Knit fabrics with stretch, on the other hand, will accommodate the wider areas as well as accentuate and define the waist. Darted dresses and tops that define the waist and maintain structure around the bust are flattering. Lengthening the torso is key, and to balance the upper half, we can add embellishment and pattern such as patterned pants or skirts to add visual weight to the lower half.

The Oval body type is shaped like an apple with their broadest width around the middle with slim legs and arms. Cap sleeves to showcase defined arms as well as fitted skinny jeans or skirts and dresses to highlight svelte legs will draw attention to those beautiful features. Tops or dresses should drape or frame the middle section and not cling to it. Clothing that is fitted around the bust and decorative necklines are flattering because they draw the eye up. Tops that are shorter in the front and longer in the back elongate legs and stretch the torso. Monochromatic colors from top to bottom keep the figure long and lean. Invest in quality jeans with a wide, firm waistband to corset in the middle, and you will be feeling great!

For the Guys

If you fall into the thin category, you want to look for clothes that aren’t necessarily skintight but don’t drown your frame. Tailored is a great look. Watch out for baggy jeans or pants and boxy shirts. You are the men that can get away with skinny jeans and straight leg jeans. T-shirts generally don’t look polished enough in pictures unless you’re going for a casual look. If you can find a tailored shirt with a “slim fit,” you’ll be able to avoid any extra fabric you don’t need. It’s not that the clothing needs to be tight, but you also don’t want your look to say “baggy” as this can translate to “sloppy.”

Men in the muscular category often have a tough time finding clothes with the right fit because of broad shoulders and wide necks. As a general rule, you should be able to fit a finger between your neck and the collar of your shirt. You don’t want too-tight fabric pulling shoulder to shoulder across the back or the chest area. When fabric doesn’t lie smoothly, you’ll notice the pulling in photos. Be aware of loud colors and pattern because you may be the largest body in the picture so, typically, complimenting solids and mild patterns are best.

If you have a stocky build, be aware of all the tips in the muscular category above and also avoid clothes that are too fitted on your middle section. Try jackets with structured shoulders as well as stiffer fabrics that won’t cling to areas you aren’t trying to draw attention to; stretchy knit fabrics don’t do any favors. Clothing that elongates your frame is your best friend: vertical stripes, long jeans or pants, and lower profile shoes will love you, and you will love them in return. Avoid boots and cropped pants as this creates the illusion of shorter legs.

Dressing for Your Skin Tone

There are quite a few variations, but to keep it simple, skin tones have either warm or cool undertones. If you’re not sure what your skin tone is, do a wrist check. If your veins appear bluer, you have cool skin tones. If they look greener, you have warmer, yellow skin tones. Sometimes it’s hard to tell until you compare your skin to a few others. Put your arms side-by-side with a few friends, and you should be able to tell who has warmer skin tones with more of a yellow, olive hue and who has cooler skin tones.

If you have a warm skin tone you have yellow undertones to your skin, and colors such as red, orange and gold are the most flattering for you within the warm color family. Colors in the cool family that complement your skin tone are warmer blue and green tones such as olive and reddish purples such as magenta. Your best neutrals are cream, brown, and taupe. You’ll want to stay away from jewel and icy tones.

If you have a cool skin tone with blue undertones your go-to cool colors include blues such as royal blue, sapphire, bright blue; deep purples; lilac; and greens such as emerald. Warm colors that work well with your coloring are ruby, pinkish reds, and bright rose. Your ideal neutrals are navy, grey, and white. Colors that are tougher for you to pull off are oranges and yellows.

I hope these tips help you feel more confident and love who you are! Because you ARE beautiful!


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At Laura Miller Photography, we specialize in maternity, newborn, baby and family photography. Our calendar fills up quickly, so be sure to schedule your slot early.

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