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Share to PinterestClothes That Make You Look Taller
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Clothes That Make You Look Taller

By Alicia Smith
Share to PinterestClothes That Make You Look Taller

There's nothing wrong with being short — you usually look young for your age, never run out of legroom, and can save money by shopping in the pre-teen section — but even short girls who embrace their height can sometimes wish they looked taller. Luckily, it's surprisingly easy! It's all about proportion; people judge height based on the proportions of your body, which means you don't need to rely on a late (and highly unlikely) growth spurt to fool people into thinking you've got a few more inches to your name.


It's All About Fit

The most important thing you can do to make yourself look taller is to make sure your clothes fit properly. Good tailoring makes more of a difference than you think: small changes, like having your pants hemmed at the correct height or a jacket taken in at the waist so you don't look like you're swimming in it, don't have to be expensive but can be big improvements. Good fit doesn't always have to mean professional tailoring, though — something as simple as tucking in your shirt instead of leaving it hanging loose can make you look instantly taller.

Share to PinterestWoman getting clothes tailored
Zinkevych / Getty Images


Keep it short

Sticking to shorter hemlines keeps things in proportion, giving you the illusion of height. Crop tops are a great example; just like tucking in a shirt, visually raising your waist makes the middle of your body look longer, and by extension, makes you look taller. And don't be afraid of miniskirts — the same rule holds true, here. Shorter skirts make your legs look longer, and are usually more flattering than ones that cut you off at or below the knee.

Share to PinterestWoman in crop top
Stanislaw Pytel / Getty Images


High-waisted jeans

If you want to double down on this effect, embrace the high-waist trend. High-waist jeans, skirts, and pants all elevate your natural waistline and elongate your legs, which — you guessed it — makes you look taller. High-waist doesn't have to mean mom jeans, either — they're actually quite flattering and hopefully back to stay. So leave the low riders in the 90s where they belong, and embrace the high waistline.

Share to PinterestWoman in high waist jeans
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The length of your hem isn't the only thing that can affect your perceived height. Your neckline plays a big part, too. Specifically, v-necks can make you look taller by creating a vertical line, elongating the neck and adding height. Though it may seem counterintuitive, mock turtlenecks and polo necks similarly make your neck look longer, which has the overall effect of making you look taller.

Share to PinterestWoman in v-neck top
milan2099 / Getty Images



The cardinal rule of trying to look taller is to avoid breaking up your body as much as possible. The best way to do this is with color — sticking to a monochrome palette makes your body look long instead of being composed of a bunch of obviously shorter sections. This doesn't mean you need to dress head to toe in a single color; different shades of the same color work just as well. Dark colors can also help streamline the body, but if you're sick of black, colors like navy, charcoal, and forest green work too.

Share to PinterestWoman dressed all in blue
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Column dressing

Column dressing is about both shape and color. It creates a vertical line, fooling the eye into thinking you look much taller than you really are. Creating a column effect is all about layering. Long lines and similar colors create levels without cutting up your body — think long cardigans or coats layered over short tops, maxi skirts or dresses with long boots. Then, pair the outfit with belts and shoes that match your pants.

Share to PinterestWoman in long cardigan
filadendron / Getty Images


Vertical stripes

Share to PinterestWoman in vertical striped dress

If you're short, you're probably sick of hearing that you should stick to vertical stripes, but it's true. Vertical stripes have a lengthening — and often slimming — effect, so they really do make you look taller. The trick is to choose the thickness of the stripes in a way that matches your natural body shape. If you're slim, narrow pinstripes are best, and if you're curvier, opt for a thicker line.

DarthArt / Getty Images


Micro prints

Busy prints tend to draw the eye across the body, which emphasizes width. Big prints can also swamp a smaller frame, which isn't great if you're naturally petite. In contrast, sticking with smaller micro prints keeps things balanced: small prints + small frame = well-proportioned. Think tight paisley patterns or small animal prints rather than bold florals.

Share to PinterestWoman in leopard print dress
Guasor / Getty Images



Share to Pinterestpointed-toe high heels can make you look taller

This might seem like cheating, but it works, so why not? Obviously, if you're trying to look taller, heels are your best friend. Not only do they add height, but they can also change the shape of your legs, making them look longer and more toned. Even if you're not into heels, a pointed toe can work wonders; they make your feet, and by extension your legs, look longer. The same is true for nude shoes; by avoiding breaking up your legs into different color blocks, they appear longer and you appear taller.


Things to avoid

Now that you know what you should do, how about what you shouldn't? Avoid cropped pants like capris — these usually cut you off at a weird height, making your legs look shorter. Horizontal stripes are also not your friend if you're trying to look taller: just as vertical stripes can emphasize your height, horizontal lines emphasize width, making you look shorter and wider than you really are. And go easy on oversized anything — instead of looking casual and chic like some of those willowy 5'11 models, you run the risk of looking like a kid who raided their mom's wardrobe, instead.

Share to PinterestWoman in baggy capri pants
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