Do you have a pear shaped body? In this article, updated for spring and summer, learn how to dress for your pear shaped body type and get a complete capsule for this body shape that you can shop online!

Why it’s important to dress for your pear shaped body type

In my article on how to determine body shape I discuss several general body types.

Knowing which body type you have will help you choose more flattering outfits that will make you feel and look better.

Today, let’s see how to dress for your specific female body type – the pear shaped body.

I’ll be sharing my updated tips for the pear shaped body type, also called the triangle shaped body, with lots of tips on how to create the most flattering shapes for your body shape and ideas for clothes you can buy right now.

We also created a special capsule wardrobe for the pear body shape, which you can see at the end of this article.

What is a pear shaped body?

different body shapes | 40plusstyle.com

As a quick recap, you have a pear shaped body when:

  • Your hips are wider than your shoulders
  • Fat tends to accumulate on your thighs and sometimes the buttocks
  • You tend to have an elongated waist and the legs tend to be shorter in comparison to the rest of your body
  • You have a defined waist

Your aim when dressing your pear shaped body

The aim of dressing for your body type is to achieve a flattering look that accentuates your strengths.

In general, you will want to achieve a nice hourglass shape.

In order to achieve that you will accentuate the shoulders, draw attention to your upper body and waist and elongate the legs.

Please note that these are general guidelines as every body is different.

Always experiment with your unique shape and see what works for you.

How to dress for your pear body shape?

Pears tend to store their weight on their thighs and their legs may be heavy.

Often they have a very good upper body which is why you will see that much of the emphasis in dressing here is on the upper side of the body.

Is a pear shaped body the same as a spoon body shape?

While you are likely to be more familiar with the term “pear shape”, the pear shaped body is also sometimes referred to as a spoon shape.

Think about this shape as if the bowl of the spoon is where your hips are, with the handle being your torso. A spoon is also often used to describe a pear-shape with a little bit of a tummy.

Tips for dressing the pear shaped body in spring and summer

how to dress the pear shaped body - a striped blazer and jeans | 40plusstyle.com

It can be easier to dress during winter and fall for any body shape, because you can use layers in a way you can’t during the warmer months.

However, there are still plenty of ways to dress the pear shape in a flattering way during spring and summer. Read on for lots of ideas as well as well as a capsule wardrobe created especially for the pear shape for spring and summer.

Pepa (above) shows off a couple of techniques that can work for the pear shape. While a darker pair of jeans is generally more flattering and easier to wear for pear shapes, this outfit still works well for pears. The horizontal stripes of the jacket balance out the upper body, while the belt draws attention to a slim waist.

Recreate her look with this similar long top, stripe jacket, jeans, tote and belt.

Which garments are good for the pear shaped body?

If your goal is to downplay your hips we have some recommendations for you on the best clothing for the pear body shape.

Further on, you’ll find some specific tops, coats, dresses, skirts, pants, shoes and accessories which will work for the pear shape.

But, first, here are some top tips.

1. Draw attention to your upper body

The idea is to detract from your bottom half and draw the attention to your slim, upper body.

Choose bright colors on your top half and darker shades on your bottom half. Choose a top which emphasizes your waist.

Chelsea28 pleated wrap top | 40plusstyle.com

Chelsea28 pleated wrap top

2. Think about your neckline

Several types of neckline can work for you, but to create width across your shoulders to balance out your hips, look out for boat necks and Bardot styles.

Boden sweater | 40 plusstyle.com

Boden sweater

3. Accessories are your friend

To draw the eye up away from your hips and thighs, choose colorful scarves, statement necklaces and hats.

wearing a colorful scarf for the pear shaped figure | 40plusstyle.com

Echo square silk scarf

4. Go for darker shades of denim

When choosing your jeans, opt for a dark wash as these will be most flattering. Choose bootcut rather than tapered.

7 For All Mankind bootcut jeans | 40plusstyle.com

7 For All Mankind bootcut jeans

5. You will look fabulous in dresses

Pear shapes often look beautiful in a fit and flare style dress which nips in at your waist and then skims over your hips.

Gal Meets Glam fit & flare midi dress | 40plusstyle.com

Gal Meets Glam fit & flare midi dress

Now, let’s move onto some specific ideas for each individual item of clothing.

Tops for a pear shape capsule wardrobe

polka dots and black pants for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com
  • Since your hips are a lot wider than your shoulders you want to emphasize the shoulders and widen them. So it’s actually good for pears when shoulder pads are back in fashion! Puffy shoulders will work too and are on-trend right now. Always make sure that the shoulders are properly fitted.
  • To give the impression of longer legs and a shorter torso you can wear a few layered tops with one very short layer, like a short jacket. This will break up your elongated torso and give the illusion of longer legs.
  • Wear something catchy on top. Either a catchy color or some nice detail on your top. Breast pockets, big collars or a pattern are also good. Horizontal stripes help to widen your upper body to bring it more into balance with your hips as do (subtle) shoulder pads.
  • It’s best that your tops and jackets end either above or below the widest point of your hips and bottom
  • V-line tops will draw further attention to your upper half
  • Wider necks will also work, as will horizontal strips and tops with puffed sleeves.
  • But good necklines for you are also the boat neck and the Bardot style as these will make your shoulders look wider.
  • Wear a good bra.

Jona (above) wears a polka dot top with puff sleeves which draws attention to her upper body, along with a dark-colored pair of pants.

Checkout these puff sleeve top options from Halogen and Amazon, similar pants, booties, crossbody bag and necklace.

Best tops for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com

Ted Baker London floral wrap blouse Eileen Fisher boat neck t-shirtFRAME stripe puff sleeve t-shirtAL MC rolled sleeve v-neck t-shirt

Best sweaters for the pear shape

stripes and pants for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com

As we are heading into spring, you will still need some sweaters to keep you cozy on cool days. Colorful styles will work very well, as will stripes and boat or Bardot necklines.

Jaye (above) wears a pair of pale pants which can be difficult to wear for the pear shape. However, she puts the emphasis on her upper body with her colorful, horizontal striped sweater.

Get her look with this similar sweater, wide leg pants and loafers.

Best sweaters for the pear shape | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen bateau neck sweaterFRAME puff sleeve sweatshirtFRAME stripe sweaterCENY long open front cardigan

Best jackets and coats for the pear shape

  • Wear structured A-shaped coats of knee length. A great coat for you is the trench. Make sure you get one with lots of details on top (like lapels on shoulders) and that it is plain from the waist down.
  • Belted blazers are also a good option for the pear shape because they draw attention to the waist. Choose one in a vibrant or paler color to your bottom half.
  • You can also use a longer top and then add a shorter jacket to give the illusion that your legs are longer than they are.
  • Long cardigans and jackets that end well below the hip can work really well too
  • Look out for styles that give the illusion that your top half is wider, to add balance, or which accentuate your waist.

If you want to, you can also think about wearing a longer layer under a shorter jacket. For instance, if you wore a long darker layer under a short jacket, the attention would be on the point the jacket ends rather than your hips.

Aba opts for a long cardigan. This can be a good option for the pear shape as it skims over the hips, creating long lines.

Check out this similar tee, cardigan, jeans, booties and crossbody bag.

Best jackets and coats for the pear shape body | 40plusstyle.com

Sam Edelman moto jacketSam Edelman trench coatTopshop crop denim jacketHalogen drape lightweight jacket

For more inspiration take a look at how to wear short jackets.

Best pants and skirts for the pear body type

Here are a few tips and some examples of good pants for this body shape.

  • Wear trousers that are not too tight or light. Boot leg trousers are very good for pears.
  • Avoid pants that are too low on your hips. A higher rise is better.
  • You will look best if your trousers or skirt are the darkest part of your outfit.

Finding a pair of jeans for the pear shape can be tricky because of your lovely curves.

If you find a pair that fits at the hips and thighs, they can gape at the waist, and if you find a pair that fits at the waist, they can be too tight on the thighs.

It can be best to look for a pair of jeans specifically designed for a woman with curves so that they are tapered in from the hips to the waist.

The most flattering style for a pear shape is a dark wash, bootcut with a high waist.

Some of my favorite brands for jeans include:

Also take a look at the best fitting jeans for women over 40.

a puff sleeve top and pleated skirt outfit for pear shapes | 40plusstyle.com

When choosing skirts, A-line skirts are a pear-shaped woman’s best friend.

When you wear a well-structured A-line skirt that emphasizes your waist, people will not even notice your wider hips.

Anne (above) shows off an outfit which would work for a pear shape. The puff sleeves of her sweater effectively widen out the shoulders, creating balance, while the skirt skims the hips.

Check out this similar puff sleeve sweater, skirt and boots.

Good brands for A-line skirts:

Best pants and skirts for the pear body type | 40plusstyle.com

7 For All Mankind bootcut jeansZella crop wide leg pantsLeith satin midi skirtBoden jersey maxi skirt

Best dresses for pear shaped body

How to dress a pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

Women like Kim Kardashian like to emphasize their pear shape with form-fitting dresses and skirts, but most women prefer to downplay their hips and A-line dresses are perfect for doing that.

A-line dresses which fit and flare will always look good on you. Dresses with defined shoulders and a good a-line are particularly good.

Estrella (above) opts for a bright wrap dress, which is a flattering shape for most figures.

Check out these wrap dress options from Kiyonna and Amazon, and pair it with these similar ankle strap sandals.

Two brands to look out for at Nordstrom for A-line and fit-and-flare dresses are Eliza J and Gal Meets Glam Collection. Here are some of my current favorite dresses at Nordstrom.

Dresses that are perfect for pear shape bodies | 40plusstyle.com

Gal Meets Glam fit & flare midi dressFoxiedox stripe midi sweaterHarper Rose asymmetrical hem fit & flare dressMINKPINK faux wrap dress

Also, take a look at the best dresses for your body shape.

Best shoes and accessories for the pear shaped body

  • Use accessories to further emphasize the top part like necklaces and scarves.
  • Waist belts may look good on you as they emphasize your small waist.
  • High boots are very flattering for your legs
  • Be careful with high shoes or shoes with ankle straps as they will shorten your legs
  • Wear medium to chunky heels with a bit of height to further elongate the legs.
  • Avoid handbags that sit on the hips.
  • You may wish to avoid big bracelets as, when you have your arms by your sides, they will draw the eye to your hips.
Best shoes for the pear shaped body | 40plusstye.com

Fly London sandalFly London wedge sandalRebecca Minkoff bootieNaturalizer wedge sneaker

Accessories to wear if you have a pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

O’Neill wood handle jacquard bagMadewell snake embossed clutchNordstrom leather toteEcho square silk scarfBrixton fedoraMichael Kors beltMonica Vinader drop earringsGorjana huggie earringsBP. square sunglassesMadewell layered necklace

Kylie (above) is wearing an outfit which could be a good option if you are a pear shape. A fit and flare skirt skims over the hips. Meanwhile a bright top and jacket draw the eye upwards.

Recreate her look with this similar blazer, skirt, sandals and earrings.

Famous pear shaped women

If you have a pear shaped body, you are in good company.

Pear-shaped celebrities | 40plusstyle.com

The most famous pear shaped women include Kim Khardashian, Beyonce and Rihanna.

Rather than downplaying their curvy hips, they usually highlight them!

General tips on how to dress for the pear shaped body

Let’s recap on some of the most flattering options for a pear shape:

  • Belted jackets and bootcut jeans are the perfect combination.
  • Put a lot of emphasis on your top part with colorful jackets, stripes and bold accessories.
  • The A-line skirt and dress is your best friend!
  • Put emphasis on the waist if you are a pear shape.
  • Create a column of color. A long vest worn over the top of this column. can make your hips disappear.

In the picture below you can see how Annette puts a few of these tips put into practice:

  • She wears bold earrings to draw attention to the upper part of her body (similar earrings)
  • She also uses a scarf to do that (similar scarf)
  • A dark-colored v-neck dress (similar dress)
  • She uses a column of color for a lengthening and slimming look
  • The outer long layer furthers emphasizes the vertical lines (similar long cardigan)
  • Small heels aid the lengthening effect (similar pumps)
  • The end result is a very figure-flattering look in which the hips disappear.
How to style a pear shape body | 40plusstyle.com

What not to wear?

You are always able to wear anything (as the celebrity examples of pear shaped women show above) but if your goal is to downplay your hips, you may want to avoid the following garments:

  • Skinny jeans (however these can be worn with some tunics, A-line long tops or long cardigans).
  • Pencil or straight skirts
  • Very short skirts
  • Tops with narrow shoulder lines
  • Pleats and pants with a lot of details
  • Shoes and booties with ankle straps, very delicate footwear and kitten heels

Please note that the guidelines above are for general guidance only. Everyone is different and you certainly don’t have to stick to the above guidelines to dress well. 

If you have anything further to add, let me know in the comments’ section below!

Here are 9 looks featuring the pieces we used above.

You can combine the clothes, shoes and accessories in myriad ways, but here are 9 ideas to get your started. All links to the items were share above in the relevant sections.

A summer capsule wardrobe for the pear shaped body

A capsule wardrobe for the pear shaped body | 40plusstyle.com

A winter capsule for the pear body shape

Are you still in winter mode or heading into fall / winter season? The capsule wardrobe below as created for a winter wardrobe (items no longer available, but you can show your closet or look for similar items online).

A capsule wardrobe on how to dress a pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com

Want to know more about how to create your own unique capsule wardrobes? Read our ultimate guide to creating a capsule wardrobe that works best for you.

Video: How to dress your pear shaped body type

Want to know more check out this short video on how for your pear shaped body from our style expert Ruth Essex.

Need to discover your body type?

Want to know more about women’s body types, you can discover your body type here.

From there you can browse all the other body types: apple, rectangle, hourglass, and inverted triangle

All these articles are constantly updated with helpful videos and looks for the season you are in.

How do you prefer to dress your pear shaped body?

Continue reading:

  1. How To Determine Your Body Shape
  2. How To Dress The Apple Body Shape
  3. How To Dress The Rectangle Body Shape

Like this article on how to dress the pear shaped body? Save it on Pinterest!

How to dress the pear body shape | 40plusstyle.com

Feature image by Estrella

Celebrities image source: Vogue

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