Summer outfits that erase 10 pounds instantly? Yes please! We asked top stylists to dress 8 readers in the season’s most flattering looks. The results: simply stunning! Scroll down for the fashion finds that will have you feeling cool and confident as the temperatures rise.
Photos by Lisa Sciascia/First Magazine
slimming swimsuits pear-shaped body types
Slimming Swimsuits for Pear-Shaped Body Types
Tara Geraghty, 40: “I want a swimsuit that hides my hips, but everything I try makes my hips look wider!”
The Problem: A suit that covers the hips backfires because the bottoms hit at the widest part of the thigh, emphasizing width.
The Flattering Fix: “Unlike skimpy styles of the past, the modern-day two-piece is made to flatter a woman with curves, and mix-and-match styles are ideal for balancing uneven body types,” says Samantha Brown, who has dressed Faith Ford and Candice Bergen. “A halter with details like ruffles gives the illusion of volume on top, and high-waisted bottoms that curve around the tops of thighs make legs look longer, optically minimizing hips.”
Get the Look: Swimsuits for All Originator Brigadoon Folded Bikini ($51, SwimsuitsForAll.com); Chinese Laundry Natti Flat Sandal in Dark Nude ($40 with 20% off code FIRST20 at checkout, ChineseLaundry.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Erase cellulite with a coffee-infused scrub. Caffeine acts as a diuretic to flush dimple-causing fluids. Try: Bath and Body Works Coffee Bean Body Scrub ($15 for 5 oz., BathAndBodyWorks.com).
summer clothes for women big bust
Summer Clothes for Women With Large Busts
Diane Eschenbach, 60: “Work-appropriate summer tops make my big bust look even bigger — not good!”
The Problem: A fitted button-down top is a stay-cool way to look polished in the warmer weather, but it can leave “the ladies” busting out at the seams.
The Flattering Fix: A dark top with neckline embellishments. “Dark colors don’t absorb light, so shapes recede, helping to minimize the bust,” says stylist Eric Himel, who’s worked with Jenny McCarthy and Giuliana Rancic. “And pretty pearls along the neckline jazz it up for a more office-ready spin while directing the eye up for a subtle breast ‘lift.’” Finishing touches like statement heels and cuffed pants add interest to the bottom for a more visually balanced body.
Get the Look: Ann Taylor Pearlized Embellished Tee ($70, AnnTaylor.com); Slimsation Narrow Pant with Pockets in White ($69, Slimsation.com); Betsey Johnson Sultry Spark Slingback Heel ($69, ModCloth.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Nix boob sweat with an aluminum chloride wipe. It blocks sweat glands to end excessive perspiration for up to seven days. Try: SweatBlock ($18 for eight towelettes, SweatBlock.com).
slimming bathing suits curvy body type
Slimming Bathing Suits for Curvy Body Types
Carol Murray, 61: “I feel a lot more comfortable at the pool with a sarong, but it makes me look short and boxy.”
The Problem: Tying a sarong over a swimsuit is the speedy way to hide lower-body trouble spots, but one that’s long and billowy completely erases curves to make the body look bulky, and the light color further amplifies the lower half.
The Flattering Fix: First, look for a bathing suit with built-in shaping fabric. “This fabric smooths any belly bumps and helps trim the torso,” says Brown. And a suit with a linear pattern directs the eye vertically for a leaner look on top. Then opt for a sarong that’s only 21 inches long and 48 inches wide and tie it so it hangs just below the stomach. “This streamlines the body from the waist down,” Brown explains, “while the shorter style gives a glimpse of legs to create the illusion of a svelte silhouette from head to toe.”
Get the Look: Miraclesuit Caravan Odyssey Swimsuit #6511618 ($148 with 15% off code ODYSSEY at checkout, Miraclesuit.com); Sassy Sarongs Georgette Royal Sarong ($28, SassySarongs.com); CL by Chinese Laundry Best Match Nubuck Sandal in Dusty Pink ($40 with 20% off code FIRST20 at checkout, ChineseLaundry.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Soothe razor burn with an aspirin paste, which has been shown to diminish irritation by 96 percent. Experts explain that aspirin’s salicylic acid calms inflammation and itching. To do: Crush 2 aspirin tablets and mix with 1 Tbsp. of water to form a paste, then use a cotton swab to apply the paste to irritated areas along the bikini line or legs. Let sit for 5 minutes, then gently wipe away with warm water.
cute outfits for summer jeans big butt
Cute Outfits for Summer for Wide Bottoms
Sally Comollo, 51: “I like to cover my thighs with long shorts, but they still showcase my old-lady knees and backside.”
The Problem: The boxy appearance of baggy shorts that hit right above knees causes the eye to scan back and forth, adding optical width from hip to knee — at every angle! Plus, the contrast between dark shorts and pale legs can shine the spotlight on agers like droopy knees, dimply skin, and spider or varicose veins.
The Flattering Fix: Try the season’s lightweight cropped jeans. The light denim material shapes the rear for a more toned look, skims over any flaws, and exposes enough skin at the ankle to let air flow in on a warm day. “And by hitting right above the ankle, this cut pulls the eye down so legs appear long, tricking the eye into seeing a trimmer, higher tush,” says Himel. He adds that detail at the hem lends playful pizzazz while enhancing the leg-elongating effect. Himel’s easy key to even slimmer? “Keeping the look in all primary colors — blue denim, a yellow tank, and red mules — creates a chic colorblock effect that keeps the eye moving up and down for a more statuesque silhouette.”
Get the Look: T.J.Maxx top ($17, TJMaxx.tjm.com for similar styles); Chico’s So Slimming Tassel-Hem Girlfriend Crops ($109, Chicos.com); Shoe Dazzle Shea Block Heels in Red ($40, ShoeDazzle.com); Gen3 Jewels Gotta-Have Glam Beaded Necklace in Mint ($19, ModCloth.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Mask skin flaws with self-tanner. The bronze tone camouflages everything from purple veins to scars while imparting a healthy glow that gives the illusion of a toned appearance. And one infused with seaweed firms skin to reduce the look of cellulite or arm jiggles as well. Try: VersaSpa Self-Tan Spray with Bronzer ($45 for 6 oz., VersaSpa.com).
summer clothing wide shoulders sloping shoulders
Summer Outfits for Women With Broad, Sloped Shoulders
Jacquelyn Youst, 51: “I like the airy feel of open necklines and sleeveless tops, but they put my broad shoulders on full display.”
The Problem: A wide U-shaped neckline optically widens shoulders while thick cap sleeves hang awkwardly, dragging the shoulders down for a slouchy effect. The result? More frumpy than fabulous.
The Flattering Fix: A tank-top jumpsuit has a light, airy feel and its more structured design on top helps shape and streamline shoulders, says Himel. A sharp V-neck draws the eye inward for a shoulder-trimming effect and a tank-like top with straps that sit close to the neck “pulls” shoulders up, visually straightening out posture for a taller, trimmer look. As a bonus, a cropped wide-leg pant on bottom helps offset width on top for beautiful balance. Also flattering: A tie-style belt highlights an hourglass, distracting from a broader top. Himel suggests fashioning a scarf around the neck, which further works to draw focus inward to offset wide shoulders. Choose one made in a silky fabric to keep skin feeling cool no matter how high the temperature soars.
Get the Look: Echo Design Paisley Lace Silk Diamond Scarf ($39, EchoDesign.com); Vince Camuto Sleeveless Belted Wide-Leg Jumpsuit ($139, Macys.com); Deluxity Some Sunny Day Bamboo Cage Bag ($49, ModCloth.com); Naturalizer Mabel Sandals in Sapphire Suede ($89, Naturalizer.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Firm a crepey décolletage with shimmery argan oil. Light-reflecting particles in the oil blur creases while the oil’s vitamin E and fatty acids smooth fine lines for a more youthful-looking neckline. Try: Physicians Formula Argan Wear Argan Oil ($15 for 1 oz., Ulta.com).
cute summer dresses for big arms
Cute Summer Dresses for Thick Arms
Alisha Griffith, 41: “It’s too hot for long sleeves, but my arms look bulky in short sleeves. I need a fix that won’t have me sweating!”
The Problem: Short sleeves that hit midway between the shoulder and the elbow offer some coverage for arm jiggles, but they also direct the eye to the widest part of the arms, making them look thicker than they actually are.
The Flattering Fix: Go sleeveless! “It may sound counterintuitive, but putting arms on display from top to bottom draws the eye up and down, lengthening the look so arms appear longer and leaner,” explains Brown. “Plus, a dress with a deep-V neckline and a graphic pattern causes the eye to travel toward the center of the chest and away from arms, so they appear smaller. Especially flattering: opting for a wrap-style dress. The waist tie makes a whittled middle the focal point, detracting from any bulk around the arms, while the slight flare of an A-line silhouette helps mask trouble spots such as a bigger belly and thicker thighs. Pairing the dress with color-coordinating strappy sandals helps highlight gorgeous gams.
Get the Look: Lace & Mesh Ensemble Advisor Striped Wrap Dress ($89, ModCloth.com); Bluma Project Ikat Hoops ($75, BlumaProject.com); Atelier Mon Ajoure Pearl Ring ($87, AtelierMon.com); Naturalizer Kinsley Heels in Hot Sauce Suede ($89, Naturalizer.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Smooth chicken skin with an exfoliating lotion. The lactic acid sloughs off dead skin and unclogs the keratin that causes the rough bumps to form on the arms, and its ceramides lock in hydration for silky-soft skin. Tip: Apply directly after showering, when pores are most receptive to nutrients. Try: AmLactin Rapid Relief Restoring Lotion ($18 for 7.9 oz., RiteAid.com).
cute summer clothes for curvy women
Cute Summer Clothes for a Thick Middle
Olivia Loiacono, 47: “Everything in my wardrobe clings to my full stomach — it’s my biggest body gripe since having kids.”
The Problem: High-waisted bottoms are back in style, but they can end up emphasizing the stomach. Tucking a shirt into the high-waisted skirts ends up erasing natural curves and creating more bulk — and a skirt with horizontal stripes magnifies the stomach area instead of slimming it.
The Flattering Fix: Opt for the stomach-taming, body-elongating combo of a crochet tunic and shorts. “The tunic’s texture instantly camouflages a belly bulge and the past-the-hips length creates the illusion of a longer, leaner torso while also skimming over any bumps and bulges,” says Dawn Del Russo, stylist to Vivica A. Fox and Rachel Bilson. Layering the tunic over a white tank and shorts creates a column that elongates the figure, Del Russo adds. For an even more slimming effect, look for the latest technology in shapewear shorts: built-in tummy control panels to smooth out lumps and bumps without the constricting feel of shaping underwear.
Get the Look: Charming Charlie Navy Blue Rosa Tassel Earrings ($12, CharmingCharlie.com); Chico’s Textured Pullover ($89, Chicos.com); Old Navy First-Layer Fitted Tank in White ($10, OldNavy.com); Slimsation Short in White ($54, Slimsation.com); Chinese Laundry Ollie Wedge Slide Sandal in Natural ($56 with 20% off code FIRST20 at checkout, ChineseLaundry.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Banish belly bloat with a stomach wrap infused with green tea and seaweed. The algae’s iodine absorbs into skin and helps flush out fat-packing toxins while green tea’s caffeine has a diuretic effect to help eliminate excess fluids. Try: FitTea Body Wraps ($30 for four, FitTea.com).
cute summer outfits thick thighs
Cute Summer Outfits for Thick Thighs
Nancy Fass, 42: “Being petite, I struggle to find clothes that don’t swallow me whole, but fitted items accentuate my thighs, making me look even shorter.”
The Problem: Straight-leg capris tend to make even the tallest of ladies’ legs seem shorter. And when you carry your weight in the upper thighs, capris end up hugging the area, drawing attention to the problem spot and making a petite figure appear more squat.
The Flattering Fix: A floral shift dress skims over hips without clinging to thighs, cleverly disguising any thickness around the legs. Choose one with a large cascading print, which creates a linear look that helps the body appear taller, recommends Del Russo. “Topping off the look with a fitted denim jacket and cuffing the sleeves draws the eye in to whittle the waist and carve out curves.” Tip: If you avoid dresses in the summertime for fear of chub rub, throw on a pair of lacy thigh bands like Bandelettes ($17, Bandelettes.com). The fabric covers skin to prevent thighs from rubbing together.
Get the Look: Charming Charlie Pink Ombré Cha-Cha Tassel earrings ($14, CharmingCharlie.com); L.L.Bean 1912 Jean Jacket in Stonewashed ($74, LLBean.com); T.J.Maxx dress ($25, TJMaxx.tjx.com for similar styles); Chinese Laundry Savana Cork Block Heel Leather Ankle Sandal in Nutmeg ($80 with 20% off code FIRST20 at checkout, ChineseLaundry.com).
Confidence-Boosting Bonus: Heal thigh chafing with a balm containing jojoba oil and zinc oxide. The oil’s fatty acids lock in moisture to prevent the harsh friction caused by thigh rubbing, and the zinc oxide works to soothe an existing rash. Try: Skinfix Rash Repair Balm ($18 for 2 oz., shop-US.SkinfixInc.com).