How to make large calves flattering

Written by rebekah richards
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How to make large calves flattering
Boot-cut trousers conceal large calves. (Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

Strong, powerful muscles are nothing to be ashamed of, but thicker calves may make your legs look shorter. You can hide big calves in long dresses or baggy clothing, but these outfits don't necessarily create a flattering silhouette. Instead, learn the tricks to create the visual illusion of longer, leaner calves. You'll look more polished and be able to wear a more varied wardrobe, plus you'll feel more confident about your appearance.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Wear skirts and capri pants that end at your knee. A-line skirts are more flattering than pencil skirts because they create more volume.

  2. 2

    Create the illusion of slimmer legs with black, navy or brown tights. Avoid patterned or striped tights, which draw attention to your legs.

  3. 3

    Pair boot-cut or flared trousers with heels to lengthen and balance your silhouette.

  4. 4

    Wear colour-coordinated shoes, tights and skirts in dark colours to create an unbroken line. For example, wear a black skirt, black tights and black heels.

  5. 5

    Consider wearing shapewear leggings underneath trousers to give you a sleeker silhouette.

  6. 6

    Wear shoes with chunky heels to add height. Avoid stilettos and skinny heels, which will look imbalanced with thicker legs. If you have thick ankles, avoid shoes with ankle straps.

  7. 7

    Attract attention to your upper body by wearing brightly coloured tops, sparkling jewellery, interesting necklines and flattering make-up.

Tips and warnings

  • Avoid clothing that breaks mid-calf, such as skirts and capri pants.
  • Avoid tapered or cuffed trousers, which make your legs look shorter.

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