How To Dress For Your Body Type: Thin/Slim

For those thin men out there (like Dorian!), you can probably just walk into most stores and find something that generally fits your frame. But, understanding how to properly dress for your body type when you’re thin is more than just wearing the right size.  And, since a great fit is probably the biggest factor in making you look your best, we’re going to dive in on some specific tips for those of you who have thin or slim builds.

For item-specific fit tips, be sure to check out all the different Fit Guides we have available!

General Tips

Thin men can struggle to find things that fit trim enough and often just settle for wearing oversized clothes; don’t do it!  It can be tempting to wear clothes a bit big to feel like you’re adding mass to your frame but actually, it’s the opposite. You want clothes that fit properly and highlight your shape.

Since a “slim fit” can vary widely across brands, it’s really important to try lots of brands and find the one with the right slim fit for you.  Then, it’s important and to find a good tailor to make the tweaks you need to your wardrobe.

Shirts

Say no to v-necks, they’ll only make your neck look overly long and this isn’t flattering. Focus on crew neck t-shirts, polo shirts, oxfords, and dress shirts.  You can wear all patterns, stripes, and prints.  Vertical stripes are fine but horizontal stripes will add some visual width.  Make sure shirts and tops are tapered in the waist to give your body some shape.  You don’t want things to hang off your frame in any area as baggy fits will just enhance your slim frame.

Fit Guides: T-Shirts, Polo Shirts, Dress and Oxford Shirts

Jackets/Suits

Bomber jackets and blazers are best for a thinner man’s frame.  Just make sure you have them tailored if necessary to fit you in the sleeves and body.  Any suit style will work for you but just make sure you have the proper size and a slim fit.  Try a double-breasted suit or blazer to add a bit of size to your torso.

Fit Guides: Suits, Blazers, Jackets

Sweaters & Cardigans

Shawl collar sweaters and cardigans can add some size to your shoulders so we highly recommend them as a good option for your frame, but stay away from standard cardigans, they can hang off you too much.  Crewneck sweaters will also look great and can be layered with a t-shirt or a collared shirt.  But, if you’re going to wear a v-neck sweater, make sure you only wear it with a colled dress shirt or oxford underneath.  Like a v-neck t-shirt, it’s going to accentuate the length of your neck in a bad way without a collared shirt underneath.

Fit Guides: Sweaters, Cardigans

Pants/Jeans/Trousers

For jeans, trousers, and chinos, a slim fit with a tapered leg will look the best.  Stay away from straight or relaxed fits and avoid super skinny or tight pants, they will only enhance your slim legs.  Pants should be fitted at the waist and in the seat. Tailor if there’s too much fabric in the seat.  From there you can focus on tapered fit from the knee down – straight leg or no taper will give your leg the incorrect proportions.  Again, try on a bunch of different brands to find one that works best for you.

Fit Guides: Jeans, Chinos, Trousers

How Shirts Should Fit A Muscular Man With Steve Cook

Finding the right shirt fit can be a challenge, especially when you’re very muscular up top and have a narrow waist. We’re excited to be joined by our friend and fitness guru Steve Cook to discuss Ashley’s shirt fit tips for all of you fit, muscular guys!

In terms of fit details, there are four main areas you want to focus on in terms of a good or bad fit.

Chest/Shoulder Fit

Make sure you’re buying your appropriate chest/shoulder size. Focus on this area first and foremost as other areas (sleeve, waist) can be tailored much more easily. Look for trim/fitted but not tight. You don’t want button-up shirts pulling at the chest or riding up into your armpit. When you’re shopping, look for slim fit or athletic fit t-shirts for the ideal starting point. From there, test out a bunch of brands so you can figure out which ones work best for your body type.

Neck Fit

For dress shirts, make sure the neck isn’t squeezing or tight, you should be able to insert a finger or two between the collar. For t-shirts, I recommend going with a v-neck as it will highlight those neck and shoulder muscles you’ve worked so hard on in a really great way. Just make sure the v doesn’t extend too low, it should hit just above your armpit line. This rule goes for scoop neck t-shirts as well. In terms of polos and casual button-ups, you can mimic a v-neck by unbuttoning one or two buttons (but not too many, don’t be that guy!) and highlight those muscles we spoke about before.

Sleeve Fit

Again, trim and fitted (depending on preference) but not skin tight is what you want. You want the sleeves to lightly hug your bicep but not pull. For short sleeves, I also recommend keeping an eye on sleeve length. Your sleeve should hit midway down your bicep, you don’t want too short of a sleeve. If your sleeves need a bit of taper, a tailor can help.

Waist Fit

As with other areas, you want your clothing fit to accentuate the v-shape you work so hard for, and the waist area is a hugely important spot to keep an eye on. If the shirt fits your chest and arms properly but is loose and baggy around the waist it’s time to visit a tailor. Ideally, you want to be able to pull 1-2” max from the sides of your shirt, any more and it’s probably too baggy. The great news is, this is a simple alteration that a tailor can make, and trust me, it’s money well spent, even for t-shirts.

Don’t forget to check out our companion video on pants fit for muscular men over on Steve’s channel!

Extra special thanks to Steve for joining us, for more, check out his channel and site:

Youtube

Instagram

Website

Style Tips To Make You Look Slimmer

Your wardrobe should always be working for you, not against you and for those of you guys out there who are on the broader and bigger side, there are some simple tips and tricks you can use to help you look leaner. As a stylist, Ashely works with guys of all shapes and sizes, and we’re excited to share a few simple things she’s learned over the years.

1. Get the right fit

It may be a common misconception that bigger men should dress in baggier clothes. Wrong. It’s even more important to find the right fit that flatters your shape if you want to look slimmer.  Get the right size first, then get things tailored properly as well. Don’t forget to check out all of our fit guides for more info!

2. Try darker colors

It’s true, dark colors are naturally slimming, especially on your lower half. Plus, a dark, monochromatic effect can also help slim you down

3. Go for larger-scale patterns

From there, you can introduce some patterns but keep them on the larger side to match your larger frame. And yes, it’s also true that you want to avoid horizontal stripes, they’re only going to accentuate your width.

4. Keep your blazers/suit jackets buttoned

If you’re wearing a well-fitting suit or blazer keeping it buttoned, it slims you visually and can take pounds off your look. (If you don’t believe me, believe Tom Ford, he knows a thing or two).  By keeping it buttoned you’ll be nipping in your waist and giving you a leaner shape.

5. Keep casual jackets/sweaters unzipped/unbuttoned

If you’re wearing more casual items like a bomber jacket or cardigan you want to leave those unbuttoned to break up your middle and create some vertical visual aspects.  Despite what you may think, keeping them zipped up will actually draw more attention to your stomach area and create extra bulk.

6. Choose the right materials

The wrong fabrics and materials can definitely work against you. Thick, heavy fabrics can make you look too bulky and super thin ones can be too clingy. The right textured fabric can also lean you down, as we discussed in our polo video, so find the right ones that work for you.

7. Add a layer or two

Throwing on a well-fitting jacket or blazer can definitely work in your favor to create a leaner visual look, but you’ve got to be smart about it. A common misconception is that a lot of layering will slim you down, but too many can make you look even bulkier, so keep it to just one or two. Try wearing a cardigan or vest underneath your suit jacket or blazer but be sure to keep the inner layer buttoned while the jacket stays unbuttoned.

Dorian’s Outfit

Brooks Brothers Polo

Barton Perreira Glasses

Nivada Grenchen Chronomaster (Vintage)

Watch Strap