The best clothes to buy to hide your stomach

Updated April 17, 2017

If you want to conceal your belly, you're not alone. The right clothes can slim any figure, but the wrong outfit will not only show off your bulges, it may even add the illusion of extra pounds. Figure out which clothes look best on you so you can hide your stomach and get the most out of your wardrobe purchases.

Women: What to Buy

Don't automatically reach for baggy, shapeless clothing; tent-like clothes make you look bigger. Instead, wear fitted (but not tight) clothing that camouflages your stomach, such as baby-doll tops, flat-front trousers and structured jackets. V-necks and sweetheart necklines draw attention away from your stomach. You'll also look good in A-line skirts and dresses, which give the illusion of a thinner waist. Black and dark colours tend to be slimming. In addition, wear shapewear, which smooths your tummy and prevents bulges from showing.

Women: What to Avoid

Don't wear thick or shiny fabrics, such as velvet and satin. Stay away from horizontal stripes and large or loud patterns. High-waisted trousers and skinny jeans won't flatter you, either. Don't wear cropped shirts or tops that are too short; longer shirts draw eyes past your tummy and are more comfortable. Finally, avoid trousers that are too tight, which gets rid of a muffin top, or flesh spilling out over the top of your trousers.

Men: What to Buy

Choose shirts and trousers of similar colours, such as light grey and dark grey, instead of sharply contrasting colours like black and white, which draw too much attention to your middle. Vertical stripes give the illusion of a slimmer stomach. Wear low-rise trousers and make sure your jacket falls just below your bottom. Wear a belt to create the illusion of a waist, but don't secure it so tightly that your stomach hangs over it.

Men: What to Avoid

Avoid horizontal and diagonal stripes as well as large patterns, which make your stomach look bigger. Don't wear trousers that are pleated or too tight. Wear V-necks instead of turtlenecks to give the illusion of a sleeker silhouette. Avoid overly loose or baggy clothing, which makes you look bigger. Finally, choose lighter fabric over thick fabrics, which add inches and bulk to your stomach.

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About the Author

Rebekah Richards is a professional writer with work published in the "Atlanta Journal-Constitution," "Brandeis University Law Journal" and online at She graduated magna cum laude from Brandeis University with bachelor's degrees in creative writing, English/American literature and international studies. Richards earned a master's degree at Carnegie Mellon University.