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Dressing the Skinny Guy

Wouldn’t it be great if we lived in a perfect world, where we had the perfect body and no issues to contend with?  Maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who have no wardrobe challenges because your body is “off the rack” perfect, but, if instead, you find nature has let you down, don’t despair… we can dress ourselves in ways to conceal nature’s cruel sense of humor.

We can use clothing to both disguise the worst of us, and accentuate the best of us.  And, so is true for the overly thin man, who, by following a few tips, can outsmart Mother Nature by looking larger than he actually is.

Dressing the Skinny Guy Tips

Avoid slim fitting shirts.  This pertains to all shirts; from t-shirts to dress shirts.  Any shirt that is form fitting, or tapers close to your body, will draw attention to your size.  This includes shirts that are too small or tight, and those made of stretchy or clingy material.  Wearing shirts that are too large will emphasize your thinner build, also.  Choose shirts that fit your shoulders, and are loose fitting in the midsection area.

No skinny jeans!  Being able to wear them doesn’t mean you should.  They will only emphasize your skinny legs.  Straight leg and boot cut jeans are best.  Relaxed fit is another fit you want to avoid.

Wear turtleneck and crewneck sweaters instead of v-necks if your neck and chest are thin, or if the collarbone protrudes.  For this reason, keep button-up shirts buttoned up to the collar.
Choose sport coats and suit jackets with light shoulder pads, as opposed to heavy ones.  A smaller pad will proportionately enhance your shoulders, while thick padding will be overdone, making the jacket appear too large for your body.

Jacket length is best just below the buttocks.  Outerwear that falls at the waist should be avoided because it will draw attention to your thin waist.  Longer jackets and coats can overwhelm a thinner build by looking too large and all-consuming.

Flat front pants are always safest and in style; however, pants with pleats and pockets do volumize; creating a girthy illusion.  Cuffs do the same thing, but be aware that cuffs, as well as pleats, also make you look shorter.  So, these features may be best suited for a thin, taller guy.
Bulky, thick fabrics create a larger appearance, so wear heavy sweaters, corduroy pants or any material that’s thicker and adds size.

Layering is a great option because it allows you to build on your size, and makes you appear more massive.

Get to know your tailor!  Chances are suit jackets and sport coats will need to be custom tailored, so excess material can be removed; resulting in a properly fitted jacket.  Pants, regardless of type, should always be hemmed to the proper length.  This is especially important for the thin guy because excess material bunched around your ankle detracts from the balanced look you’re going for.

Speaking of balance, stay consistent by dressing your top half the same as your bottom half.  You want your outfit to flow; without bringing attention to any particular skinny body part or parts.  Wearing thick and layered fabrics on top, with tapered pants, will only make you look top heavy and emphasize thin legs.  One way to avoid this fashion faux pas is by ditching the tapered pants!

Consider purchasing finer clothing like slacks, dress shirts and suits from companies who custom make them specifically for you, based on your exact measurements.  Surprisingly, they aren’t as expensive as you’d think; especially when compared to the final cost of clothing you have tailored.  There are many online companies worth checking out.

If being larger and not just visually appearing larger is something you want, be sure to eat properly, which means consuming additional healthy calories and protein.  Protein, along with lifting weights, will bulk up muscles and add to your size.  There’s not a body builder on the planet that would have nearly as much muscle and size if he didn’t workout.  Weight training benefits the thin guy, too.

Utilizing these simple style rules should take you from looking skinny to looking sharp; giving you the confidence to reflect an image you’ll be proud to own!

by Aaron Marino

Pete and Pedro

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