How to Choose the Perfect Foundation Garments or Shapewear for Your Body Type

By Ashley Berg , last updated December 5, 2011

Evening gowns, party dresses, and holiday attire call for slim silhouettes that can often only be achieved by using shapewear and foundation garments to smooth, compress, and control the consequences of holiday dining excesses. But knowing which types are best for your body and your outfit is difficult to figure out on your own. For a helpful guide on the perfect foundation garments and shapewear for a variety of body types, read on and discover some tips and tricks to selecting the right piece every time. Though you are unlikely to curtail your eating habits during this season, you can count on the following items to assist in keeping the extra pounds off, at least in appearance.

If You Are Pear Shaped

An extremely common body type is the pear shape. This shape is recognizable by its smaller on top, bigger on bottom proportion. If you are pear shaped you probably feel that your thighs and booty are the main concerns when it comes to perceived flaws. Fortunately there are lots of options in the shapewear world to help you minimize the distracting elements and maximize the positives. For longer legs and slimmer thighs, try Spanx Simplicity Shaper. It has breathable, lightweight fabric that slims the tummy, butt, hips, and thighs for an all over smooth look women crave. Seamless edging promises to remain hidden under even the most body-conscious clothing. It retails for around $52.

If You Are Rectangle Shaped

The rectangle is a straight body shape and is marked by narrow shoulders and hips, creating a bit of a boyish shape. If you would like a more womanly, hourglass figure you need to use the appropriate foundation garments to cinch in your waist and boost your derriere. The Body Wrap strapless padded underwire body suit has all the things you are looking for. A padded bust adds femininity and softness while the compressive bodysuit nips in the waist for a dramatic effect. The lifting and enhancing quality of the seamless microfiber can also firm your rear while tucking in a tummy. Removable straps are available in clear and regular should your outfit require them. Available in nude and black, this multifunctional piece retails for roughly $86.

If You Are Diamond Shaped

The diamond, or rounded, shape is characterized by a bulging middle, including belly, hips, and chest. While a full bust is often desirable, the other areas require some management. The best way to streamline this body type is through more traditional foundation apparel. Romantic and classic, a corset is an effective and supportive item that can draw in the belly and improve posture, while lifting the chest for a beautiful hourglass result. The Carnival Full Figure Torsolette is a great compromise between traditional microfiber shapewear and constrictive corsets with boning. The Torsolette is slimming without being bulky under clothing, with its paneled design and shaping cups, and even has some optional garters for an additional after hours appeal. This beautiful and elegant piece is listed for around $55, and is sure to become a staple of your fine evening wardrobe.

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