Looking for the best pants and skirts to hide your belly? We’ve got you covered. In this article, you will find two key strategies to use to find pants and skirts which perfectly fit and hide your belly.
Finding the best pants to hide your belly
A challenge many women experience is finding pants to hide your belly and skirts that fit perfectly when your hip and waist are drastically different sizes or you have a larger tummy.
Another desire is to find pants and skirts that tuck the belly in.
The challenge is to find the best pants that fit. If you have a belly, that often means looking for pants with an elasticized waist.
There are TWO different, but just as effective options you could select.
- Pants with an elastic waist
- Pants that help tuck the tummy in
First, let’s look at pants and skirts which are comfortable and which fit well because they have an elasticated waist.
Second, I will show you some stylish options which actually help to tuck your tummy in and give you a smoother silhouette.
Getting the right fit for your skirts and pants to hide a belly
There are a few approaches you can take.
First, an option to get the fit right is to have your pants and skirts tailored. This is certainly a great option for pants you already own (or those without an elastic waistband).
When buying new pants to hide your belly it’s usually best to buy pants that fit the widest part. That way you can ask your tailor to fit the part that is too loose.
A second option (and the one which this post is centered on) is opting for pants and skirts with an elastic waistband.
Comfortable pants with elastic waistbands
Let me show you the extensive options you have when it comes to selecting pants to hide your belly with elastic waistbands that create flattering and chic looks.
From on-trend cropped jeans to wide leg black trousers, mostly every kind of pants you can imagine comes in elastic waistband styles these days.
An extra benefit of selecting pants and skirts with elastan is that they also help you tuck your tummy in.
Similar top, linen pants (another option here), shoes and hat
Elastic waistband skirts and women’s elastic waist pants can be super stylish and flattering!
Don’t automatically think that an elastic waistband means severely limiting your styling options or that you have to settle for a pair of very, very unflattering pants.
Whereas once, these may have been seen as a styling option only for the very old, and they were made in rather unflattering man-made materials such as polyester, elastic waist pants have come a long way in the style stakes.
Some quick guidelines to keep in mind when looking for pants to hide your belly
Keep your body shape in mind
Just because you are opting for a pair of elastic waist pants, don’t forget about what styles flatter your body shape.
You will find elastic waist pants in every style from skinny to bootcut.
Also take a look at how to wear printed pants.
Try a longer top
If you pick a dressy pair of pants that has a drawstring, it might be best to select a longer top to keep your look appropriate. Look out for draped or asymmetric styles, or tops with a print.
Massimo Dutti Textured Linen Overshirt
Kimba @kimbalikes above shows how you could wear a long, plain color shirt with a pair of print pants. You could also add a necklace to draw attention to your face and neckline.
Recreate her outfit with this similar long shirt, pants, sandals and necklace.
Or a TIGHTER TOP
Keep the style rule in mind that it’s usually best to combine a loose fit with a tighter or more tailored top. If your pants have a tighter fit a wider top may look better. If you do choose a tighter top, some ruching and draping will help to hide a tummy.
Loveappella Cross Drape Sleeveless Top
Treat elastic waist pants the same way you would any other style. They might be more comfortable and fit better, however, you should still strive to style them appropriately.
Women’s elastic waist pants
Typically, if you are going for a dressier option in a style with an elastic waist, you should aim for pants that do not have those scrunchy type of hems.
As mentioned above, there are a number of great elastic waistband options.
These can be a challenge when going for an office-appropriate look, and can be more appropriate for casual or after-work hours looks.
A good style to look out for can be pants which look like regular pants at the front, but with an elasticated waistband at the back.
You can still opt for a belt if your pants are elasticated. Just make sure the belt doesn’t draw attention to any problem areas.
Many pants come in a style where they look like “regular” button-fastening pants from the front, but they have an elasticated waistband at the back.
As well as traditional elastic waist pants, another option is a stretchy pull-on pants.
There are also a number of casual options with elastic waistbands.
Some styles even create very flat waistband looks that almost appear to be button closure pants.
You will find that drawstring pants with cuffed hems look best styled casually.
There are also plenty of elastic waistband pants which are very versatile and which could be dressed up or down.
Pants with an elastic waistband can also be a good option for travel.
Caslon Wide Leg Pull-On Linen Blend Pants
COS Wide Leg Printed Silk Pants
ARGENT Pull-On Wide Leg Stretch Wool Pants
Georgette @grownandcurvywoman above (read her style interview here) opts for a pair of print pants, and keeps her top neutral.
Steal her look with this similar tank top, printed pants, sandals, bag and earrings.
Elastic waist jeans
Jeans are wonderful but the heavy buttons and thick zippers can sometimes enlarge your belly. Instead opt for elasticized jeans.
You will find that elastic waist jeans come in every style that “regular” jeans do, but jeggings tend to be the easiest style to find.
XÍRENA Rex Tie Waist Denim Pants
Anne Klein Pull-On High Waist Slim Flare Jeans
Madewell Pull-On High Waist Skinny Flare Jeans
Lands’ End Starfish High Rise Pull On Knit Denim Straight Crop Jeans
Jag Jeans Valentina Pull-On High Waist Crop Straight Leg Jeans
Karen @styledbykaren above shows how you can create a column of color with your outfit, and then add a different color long shirt, cardigan or jacket over the top. This creates an elongating, slimming effect.
Get her look with this similar tee, shacket, skinny jeans and sneakers.
Effective belly hiding elastic waistband skirts
Just as with pants, you can find plenty of styles of skirts which feature an elastic waistband.
Skirts too can be very effective in hiding bellies and stretchy skirts are very easy to fit.
If you add a print in the mix, they can be really flattering as they highlight your curves and the elastan sucks in your tummy.
This means you can dress to suit your body type as well as being stylish and comfortable.
Similar tee, skirt (another option here), cropped jacket, hat, earrings and Fly London Bani sandals
The skirt I am wearing above is made out of stretchy cotton (similar here) with an elasticized waist, so it’s an easy fit . The asymmetrical design is far from standard though.
Eileen Fisher A-Line Organic Linen Midi Skirt
Anne Klein Polka Dot Pleat Midi Skirt
NIC+ZOE Flower Field Tiered Cotton Midi Skirt
ANRABESS Elastic Waist Tiered Skirt
DJT Handkerchief Hemline Midi Skirt
Another option is to choose a skirt with some ruching which can help to cover up any lumps or bumps.
Kate Kasin Wear to Work Pencil Skirt
Kylie @kylish_aus above chooses a print skirt, paired with a white shirt. A print can help to disguide a tummy as it ‘confuses’ the eye. Rather than fixing on one place, the eye dots about.
Recreate her outfit with this similar shirt, maxi skirt (other options here and here) and earrings.
Pants that tuck the tummy in
Some of the examples above in the sections on elasticated waist clothing may have good tummy tucking capabilities, but in this second section, I will specifically talk about pants and jeans that can smooth out your tummy.
Here are a few that I and 40+Style contributors have personal experience with.
Of course, you don’t have to choose an elasticated waist to make sure that your pants or skirts fit your tummy.
Another good option is to look for clothes with “tummy tucking” technology or with a high-rise.
I love my cropped legging pants below from UNIQLO (similar here) which I have in a dark and light wash.
Although my bootcut PAIGE jeans do have buttons and a zipper, the elastized fabric is so good that they do a great job at sucking the belly in.
If you choose jeans that have a high rise, they will do an excellent job at tucking the tummy in.
I’m loving these brands:
Below are more tummy control options you could choose.
Rekucci Secret Figure Pull-On Knit Straight Pant with Tummy Control
Rekucci Secret Figure Pull-On Stretchy Wide Leg Dress Pants
Lee Secretly Shapes Regular Fit Straight Leg Pants
Marika Carrie Tummy Control Bootleg Pants
Alison @wardrobe_oxygen above (read her style interview here) wears a blazer over her burgundy pants.
Get her look with this similar tee, blazer, ponte pants (another option here) and pumps.
Leggings can do an excellent job at hiding the belly.
I especially love the leggings from Stella Carakasi (pictured below). They have knee versions and long leggings.
I have these in several colors. I use them in casual chic looks and combine them with tunics or layered tops as shown below.
I also wear the knee-high leggings for yoga!
These capris are super stretchy and comfortable but the material is thick enough and do an excellent job sucking the tummy in. They keep their shape very well.
Read more about this in our article on how to wear leggings – an extensive guide.
Tummy tucking jeans
Some of these jeans have an elastic waistband, and some have a regular fastening but are made from stretchier fabric with clever control panels.
Below are some more tummy control options for you.
NYDJ Marilyn Straight Leg Jeans
Lee Sculpting Slim Fit Pull On Jeans
Signature by Levi Strauss & Co. Gold Label Totally Shaping Skinny Jeans
Democracy Ab Solution Jeggings
iChosy Women’s Totally Shaping Pull-on Skinny Jeans
Find out what more what are best tummy control jeans in stores now.
shop some of the pants to hide the belly below:
What are some your biggest challenges when it comes to finding the best pants to hide your belly?
- How To Hide Your Belly With The Right Clothes
- The Best Tops To Hide Your Tummy
- The Best Tummy Control Jeans To Give You A Smoother Look
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My impression is that you really have to be extremely slim to look in good trousers or skirts with all-around elastic waistbands – they always seem to add some more layers to your front area (even models often don’t look very shapely in these). And wearing a longer/wider top over a fuller skirt or wide trousers is rarely flattering. That’s why I absolutely prefer the back-only elasticated options.
To balance things out, and also to modernize the whole look, I love wearing slim trousers or leggings flaring off from the knees down (bell-bottom or boot cut) with longer tunics and even dresses of various lengths.
Partly elasticized (and at the back) is definitely better. However, there are also tighter stretchy pants and skirts that don’t cause any bulky effect. Even though wide over wide is hard to wear, you can still use a wider cropped top that ends at the waist or just a bit lower (and just covers any elastic). A layered shorter top also works well or a rushed tighter top.
Just sad that the models wearingbthe pull your tummy jeans are so very slim
I love your blog! You give us practical options and great ideas! Thank you!
Thank you Sylvia! I spent already hours reading, and yes I started to love myself as I am…
About skirts, I was wondering if pleated or gathered skirts with a low waistline (like on the hips) is a solution when you have a tummy. Would it also be the same with a long skirt cut in biais? I sew most of my clothes because I don’t find my size in the style I like (for ex. Massimo Duti) I live in Belgium.
Some skirts cut in bias are fitted around the tummy area so you would need to wear a top that covers your belly halfway (depending on your unique proportions).
I absolutely love your website!!! Everything on here is so practical and useful. Thank you for addressing all shapes and sizes without breaking the bank!!!!
Do you have any brand/shopping information about the red/white skirt and white tie-bottom tee shirt shown as the title photo for this article? Thank you.
Every photo of a woman displayed on this page is linked to her Instagram photo. You may find details of the clothes there.
Thank you. I don’t do Instagram, so I was hoping for a shopping link.
I have a tummy that looks about 6 months pregnant as well as thunder thighs to go with it. How do I hide both?
If you want to downplay your hips go to https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-dress-a-pear-shaped-body/ To downplay your belly go to https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-hide-your-belly/
Can you wear a tucked-in shirt or top with pull-on pants? I get bored wearing tunics and leggings or skinny jeans.
It depends o the kind of pull on pants you’re using. If they’re very tight and more like leggings, it’s usually not a good idea. Also see my guidelines on how to wear leggings. https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-wear-leggings-over-40-an-extensive-guide/
However, for slightly looser styles, it can be great for your silhouette to either tuck or semi-tuck.
Thank you so much for showing me all this info.
❤️ Sílvia Jorge
Hi! I suffer from enlarged kidneys and find it very difficult to find dresses to hide my huge pregnant like abdomen due to my illness. I end up hiding in the same ugly clothes. Please help.
Did you check out my article on how to hide the belly with the right clothes yet? https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-hide-your-belly/
Where do you find such pants!? I find them to cover my muffin-top but they are still cut low over the belly. Seems like all the tops are made of rayon type materials which cling to your belly and show the waist band that is too low. Impossible to dress stylish in a hot Fl. Climate. Body shapers are too hot in the warmer climate and roll down.
I listed a few examples here (like the Stella Carakasi leggings). It’s just a matter of finding the ones that work for you. I offer more ideas in this article https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-hide-your-belly/
Hi good advice, and the outfits look great, my other problem is hot all the time and sweating- I struggle with ant colour bottom except black because of the wet patches and can only wear 1 top layer
You want to get a top that has good hiding properties on its own. I’m giving lots of examples in this article https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-hide-your-belly/ Also be sure to ONLY choose natural fabrics that can breathe.
hi thank you so much I use to do moderling 25 yrs ago I could wear anything but since having children I have put a few pounds on ,and found it hard to get clothes iam 45 yrs old 6foot 3 inches and 18 stone ,so and all my fat is on my belly ,the clothes I iam wearing make me look bigger people asking me if I was pregnant again ,o now I can go out and do a good shop for clothes I know I will look good in thanks to your advice ,sincerely lisa Roberts.
Thanks very much Sylvia for the information you are sending me
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR PUTTING THIS TOGETHER SYLVIA! GOD BLESS YOU!
Thank you for all the fashion tips. My concern is that all the stretch waistband roll on my belly.
It shouldn’t be but you may also check out this article on tummy tucking jeans https://40plusstyle.com/tummy-control-jeans/ Quite a few pants on that page are designed to keep the tummy under control.