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While you may not be able to drop 20 pounds overnight with the mysterious weight loss pills or electronic paraphernalia you've seen advertised on late-night television, there is one sure-fire way to make big bodies look thinner -- dress differently. By using color, accessories, fabrics and clothing cuts strategically, you can visually lose weight instantly. It won't make the arrow on the scale move, but it can give you enough of a boost in self-confidence to make you believe that you can look sexy and fashionable, regardless of your size.
Don't try to camouflage yourself in baggy, shapeless shirts or blazers. You'll only end up looking larger because of all that extra material. Instead, get yourself a fitted suit jacket -- preferably with a matching pair of straight-legged pants -- a forgiving tunic top that skims over troublesome areas without letting on what's underneath and some nicely fitted three-quarter-sleeve V-neck sweaters. When you wear button-down shirts, opt for ones that feature feminine touches like frilly, ruffly collars and details along-side the buttons. It'll make you feel more kittenishly sexy and keep attention up and away from your not-so-kittenish stomach and thighs.
Stick with boot-cut jeans and slimming flat-front trousers for your pant choices as well as neutral-hued numbers made from hold-it-all-in fabric blends containing wool rayon, jersey, fine cotton or flat knits. When it comes to skirts, think full, knee-grazing A-lines that glide smoothly past troublesome hips and thighs. Go for sturdy fabrics that won't cling to every dip and groove. Leave the miniskirts, cutoffs and hot pants to the fashion novices.
For those of you who carry most of your weight around your middle, seek out dresses with empire necklines and waistline ruching or wrap dresses that help create that coveted hourglass figure. Pear-shaped ladies will look slimmer in a flowing tunic-style or shift dress that is nice and loose below the waist. If you can get away with it, bypass dress-wearing altogether and wear snappily matched separates, opting for a brightly colored top and darker skirt. By doing this, you can spend time finding both a blouse and skirt that fit well and take attention away from your stomach and hip area.
Can accessories really have anything to do with making you look thinner? You have no idea. For starters, examine your handbag. If you've got some microscopic little mini-bagette, dump it and get one that's a decent size. Carrying around a small bag can make you look larger by comparison. And don't give up on heels. According to Charla Krupp, author of "How to Never Look Fat Again: Over 1,000 Ways to Dress Thinner -- Without Dieting!" every woman looks slimmer and more elongated in heels, even if you're only able to rock a 4-inch platform wedge.