CURVY FASHION: HOW TO STYLE BEST AT 50-PLUS

Welcome to ‘Curvy Fashion: How to Style Best at 50-Plus’ and step into a space where fashion celebrates confidence and style, custom-made for women over 50 with fuller figures.

In this article, we not only explore the latest trends for plus-size women in their 50s but also delve into the transformative power of fashion as a means of empowerment.

Curvy fashion is a beacon for women with fuller figures, offering a collection curated just for you. It goes beyond mere clothing styles; it's a design philosophy crafted to flatter, enhance, and most importantly, embrace your distinct style. Our goal is to empower you to feel wonderful in your skin.

Discover how fashion can be a catalyst for confidence.

Plus size woman in tailored dress

This is an invitation to embrace your style, to wear outfits for your curvy body with comfort, and to feel the transformative power that comes with looking and feeling wonderful. 

Let the journey begin, and let your style tell a story of empowerment and self-assured elegance.

UNDERSTANDING CURVY STYLE

STYLE VERSUS FASHION

To start, let's delve into the distinction between style and fashion, as it significantly influences how we approach dressing.

Fashion is ever-changing, adapting with each season and year. Trends tend to repeat, with styles from the past resurfacing in a familiar way. It's amusing when younger generations think they've discovered something entirely new, while you, having experienced it before, know better.

What was in vogue last year might no longer be fashionable, as people eagerly follow the industry's seasonal offerings.

On the other hand, style is more enduring, reflecting who you are. Even as fashion evolves, your style remains a constant expression of your personality.

It's less influenced by fleeting trends dictated by the industry. Style is timeless, adapting subtly with each season but not overly reliant on the latest industry look.

Style mirrors individual preferences, lifestyle choices, and self-awareness.

Vogue - all about fashion

This brings us to our main focus: dressing for a full-figure body. It takes courage to dress according to your preferences, especially if you've felt the need to hide your full figure due to past comments or unintentional remarks that may have affected your self-image.

Dealing with low self-esteem can lead to a negative cycle, affecting how you perceive yourself and influencing your confidence. The key is to dress in a way that makes you feel better about yourself, ultimately boosting your confidence.

Plus size and body positiv

It's about embracing your curves and taking pride in showcasing who you are. This involves adopting a body-positive approach to fashion and styling, celebrating all body types.

Choosing fashion that suits a fuller body size becomes a powerful means of expressing yourself authentically and enhancing your self-esteem.

CONFIDENT CURVES WARDROBE - PHILOSOPHY

Imagine a wardrobe that not only boosts your confidence but also celebrates your unique curves. It's all about feeling fantastic in what you wear, and making a real impact on how you see yourself.

Carefully choosing outfits that highlight your curves can free your mind and transform how others perceive you. You might even become the envy of others. Dare to be seen, and watch how it changes your entire outlook.

Feeling empowered is crucial, and embracing a body-positive philosophy is the key to building your confidence. Celebrate your individuality and the beauty of your fuller figure by trying out bold designs and staying on-trend. It's all about accentuating the gorgeous parts of your body.

Body-Positive Philosophy

The body-positive philosophy is all about accepting and celebrating every body type, pushing back against narrow beauty standards.

It encourages self-love, rejects body shaming, and supports a healthy body image.

Celebrate your size

The idea is to break down unrealistic beauty standards seen in media and promote diverse representations. It also emphasizes individuals' right to make choices about their bodies without judgment.

Importantly, it's not about endorsing an unhealthy lifestyle but creating a culture of kindness, acceptance, and self-love. This movement is gaining strength, challenging social norms, and fostering a more inclusive and compassionate view of beauty and worth.

FASHION INDUSTRY

Over the years, plus-size fashion in the UK, just like in many other places, has changed because of how people think about bodies, cultural changes, and the fashion industry's understanding that bodies come in all shapes and sizes.

During the early to mid-20th century in the UK, plus-size clothing options were scarce. The fashion industry mainly focused on smaller sizes, lacking inclusive sizing.

In the 1920s, Lane Bryant, a major plus-size retailer, emerged in the United States. Although not UK-based, its influence and the growth of specialized retailers globally impacted how plus-size fashion was perceived.

Starting in the 2000s, there was a significant rise in dedicated plus-size fashion brands in the UK. These brands aimed to offer stylish and trendy clothing for people of all body sizes.

The emergence of social media platforms became a hub for body-positive activism, giving more visibility to plus-size individuals.

Influencers and activists played a vital role in challenging stereotypes and promoting diverse representations in the fashion industry.

Social Media Platforms

Despite improvements, there are still challenges and ongoing efforts to make plus-size fashion more inclusive, representative, and accessible worldwide, including in the UK.

In recent years, the fashion industry has been changing for the better as more brands realize the importance of being inclusive, especially when it comes to plus-size fashion. 

These brands understand that people have different body types and preferences, so many of them are now making clothes in a wider range of sizes.

It's all about making fashion that includes everyone and promotes a positive view of different body shapes. 

Fashion industry is changing

When brands support plus-size fashion, they're not just helping create a more diverse idea of beauty but also reaching out to a group of people who haven't been given enough attention before.

Forward-thinking brands are now focused on making clothes that make people feel confident and allow them to express themselves, regardless of their size.

This positive change in the fashion world shows that people are starting to see beauty in different ways and that fashion can be a way for everyone to celebrate who they are.

Numerous fantastic influencers are leaving a significant mark on the fashion scene and their empowering stories resonate with undeniable authenticity.

Consider Sarah Jane Adams, an Australian fashion blogger renowned for her distinctive and daring style.

Ashley Graham, a prominent body activist, advocates for body positivity and self-acceptance, particularly championing women.

Another noteworthy figure is Felicity Hayward, who wears multiple hats as a model, author, content creator, and activist.

Feeling geared up to elevate your daily style? Let's plunge into a world where practicality meets sensational fashion.

Ashely Graham - fashion icon

Ashley Graham - an American plus-size model

WHAT SHAPE ARE YOU?

As we delve into common body shapes, it's important to remember that these are general descriptions. Each person is unique, and individuals often have variations and blends of these body types.

Knowing your specific body shape can be a helpful guide for choosing clothes that highlight and flatter your distinct features, making your wardrobe more personalized and stylish.

Pear Shape

Characterized by a narrower upper body and broader hips and thighs.

Apple Shape

Involves carrying excess weight around the midsection, with a broader upper body.

Little to no definition of the waist.

Hourglass Shape

Features a well-defined waist and balanced proportions between the upper and lower body.

Full or larger bust.

Rectangle Shape

Exhibits a straighter, more athletic build with similar measurements for the bust, waist, and hips.

Inverted Triangle Shape

Involves broader shoulders and narrower hips, creating a triangular silhouette.

Diamond Shape

Has a fuller midsection with narrower shoulders and hips.

In the next part, discover how to enhance your appearance by choosing clothing that complements your body shape.

Group of women of various sizes

PRACTICAL EVERYDAY WEAR FOR CURVY SHAPES

First off it is important to celebrate your individuality and the beauty of your fuller figure. Start with the foundation of wearing clothes: Invest in quality underwear.

Bid farewell to uncomfortable, worn-out undies and welcome the empowerment of lingerie and shapewear. Make sure that your essentials are:

  • Well-fitted, supportive bra - in your skin colour
  • Comfortable panties with support
  • Shapewear for compression and support

Creating a stylish wardrobe for those aged 50 and beyond starts with embracing your body shape. Fashion is inclusive, inviting everyone to explore vibrant colours, bold patterns, and diverse styles.

Let's kick things off by figuring out your unique body shape, and we'll share tips on which clothes will suit you best!

CURVY FASHION: HOW TO STYLE BEST AT 50-PLUS

In this section, we'll provide valuable advice on choosing clothing that complements different body shapes, ensuring you can make informed and stylish choices for every silhouette.

HOURGLASS OR PEAR SHAPE

Well-fitted pieces that highlight your favourite features and provide comfort for everyday wear. The following are tailored for curvy figures, suitable for an hourglass or pear shape:  

  • Wrap Dresses: Ideal for hourglass shapes, as wrap dresses highlight the waist and flatter curves.
  • High-Waisted Jeans: Perfect for both hourglass and pear shapes, as high-waisted jeans accentuate the waist and elongate the legs.
  • A-Line Skirts: Particularly flattering for pear shapes, A-line skirts create a balanced silhouette by flaring out at the hips.
  • Tunics: Versatile for both hourglass and pear shapes, longer-length tunics pair well with leggings or fitted pants.
    Structured Blazers: Great for both body shapes, a well-fitted blazer adds polish and streamlines the overall appearance.
  • Wide-Leg Pants: Suitable for hourglass and pear shapes, high-waisted wide-leg pants offer comfort and a chic look.
  • Peplum Tops: Especially flattering for pear shapes, peplum tops emphasize the waist and add a stylish touch.
  • Belted Trench Coat: Ideal for both shapes, a belted trench coat defines the waist and provides a classic outerwear option.
  • Tops: Choose tops with low or wide necklines. A sweetheart neckline will complement well.
  • Tailored Pencil Skirts: Especially flattering for hourglass figures, tailored pencil skirts highlight curves and provide versatility.
  • Fitted Blouses: Versatile for both body shapes, fitted blouses with strategic detailing enhance the overall look.
  • Colours: Pick darker colours for the bottom part and lighter colours for the top part.

APPLE SHAPE

Designed specifically for those with curvier figures, these styles are perfect for individuals with an apple shape:

  • V-Neck Tops: Flattering for apple shapes, V-neck tops draw attention to the upper body and create the illusion of a longer torso.
  • High-Waisted Bottoms: opt for high-waisted pants or skirts to elongate the legs and balance out the broader upper body.
  • Skater Dresses: These pieces emphasize the waist, drawing attention to the smallest part and creating a flattering silhouette.
  • Empire Waist Tops: Empire waistlines emphasize just under the bust, drawing attention away from the midsection.
  • Bootcut or Straight Jeans: Bootcut or flared jeans add balance to the figure by creating a wider hem at the bottom.
  • Longer tops and cardigans
  • Limit the use of patterns on your upper section

RECTANGLE SHAPE

Crafted with curvier figures in mind, these styles are ideal for those embracing the rectangle shape:

  • Belted Dresses: Dresses with belts create the illusion of a defined waist for rectangle shapes.
  • Peplum Tops: Peplum tops add volume to the hips, providing a curvier appearance.
  • Flared Skirts: Skirts with a flared silhouette add curves and dimension to the lower body.
  • Structured Jackets: Tailored jackets with defined shoulders and a cinched waist add shape to the torso.
  • Printed Tops and Bottoms: Opt for prints or patterns to create visual interest and enhance curves.
  • Skater dresses: Skater dresses shape a flattering silhouette by accentuating your figure. They are designed to enhance your overall look effortlessly.

INVERTED TRIANGLE SHAPE

Tailored for beautiful curves, these styles are a perfect match for individuals with an inverted triangle shape:

  • A-Line Skirts: A-line skirts balance out the broader shoulders by adding volume to the lower body.
  • Wide-Leg Pants: Wide-leg pants provide balance and create the illusion of a more hourglass shape.
  • Scoop Neck Tops: Scoop necklines soften the shoulders and draw attention downward.
  • Wrap Tops: Wrap tops create a flattering V-shape, complementing the inverted triangle silhouette.
  • Flared Dresses: Dresses with a flared or fit-and-flare silhouette add volume to the lower body.

DIAMOND SHAPE

Fashioned for stunning curves, these styles are curated to complement the elegance of a diamond shape, whereby you camouflage your waistline:

  • V-Neck Dresses: V-neck dresses elongate the torso and draw attention upward.
  • Wide-Leg Jumpsuits: Jumpsuits with wide-leg bottoms balance out the upper body.
  • A-Line Dresses: A-line dresses provide balance by adding volume to the lower body.
  • Open Cardigans: Open-front cardigans create vertical lines, elongating the silhouette.
  • Bootcut Pants: Bootcut pants balance out the figure by adding volume at the bottom.


PETITE AND CURVY

When styling a petite and curvy woman, the main objectives are to elongate the shorter frame and choose clothing that creates the illusion of a taller and leaner appearance.

Our standout features include a generous bust, and for those blessed with an hourglass shape, a slender waist in contrast to the hips may also be part of your natural beauty.

Highlight the part of your body you feel most confident about. If you have lovely legs, accentuate them. Don't conceal a beautiful cleavage, and if you take pride in your hips, flaunt them.

For further insights into fashion and curves, explore the contents of the following books: ‘The Art of Dressing Curves’ and The Curvy Girl's Style Handbook: Book 3 of the Stylish Upgrades Series (Stylish Upgrade Series)

TREND ADAPTION AND SEASONAL STYLE TIPS

Given the emphasis on women over 50, this article provides extra tips for achieving a sophisticated plus-size outfit during your search for spring, summer, or fall attire.

This extra information is tailored specifically to help ladies in the 50-and-over age group navigate trends while embracing their curves with grace and confidence.

When striving for a refined look, it's advisable to avoid large necklaces, as they may convey a cheap and unsophisticated vibe. Embracing minimalism is the key to achieving a classy and elegant appearance.

Accessories add a stylish touch! Choose a fashionable bag to enhance your look, whether it's a small or a super-large one – whatever suits you best. Don't limit yourself to just one functional bag; have some fun and experiment with different styles.

Don't hesitate to embrace the current season's colours based on the shape advice provided. Since seasonal styles continually evolve, stay updated. Check out Pinterest: plus size fashion

For plus size clothing ideas, see the following seasonal trends

For a stylish appearance, invest time in your makeup and hairstyling. Ensure that your hairstyle complements your overall look.




The attention you give to your makeup and the care you put into styling your hair will reflect in the overall look and enhance your sense of well-being. Avoid overdoing it; sometimes, less is more.

Plus-size dressing tips: Define your style. Let your watch make the statement. Just one distinct element can capture attention, prompting a second glance. It's not just a statement; it's a transformation – that is the new you.

Stylish accessories

Embrace boldness and experiment with new items during your shopping trips. Take the given advice to heart - note it down if needed - and don't settle for the ordinary.

And finally, a crucial piece of advice: demonstrate a positive attitude about yourself! Someone consistently making self-deprecating remarks appears less appealing to others, regardless of their weight.

Conversely, radiating happiness and confidence in your appearance can attract people to your personality. It's noteworthy that many men also find larger women attractive.

BODY-POSITIVE FITNESS

Body-positive fitness is an exercise approach that celebrates and embraces all body types, regardless of size, shape, or appearance.

Instead of focusing solely on looks or weight loss, body-positive fitness takes a broader approach, prioritizing overall health and well-being.

It encourages kindness towards your body and moves away from the typical judgment and appearance emphasis found in traditional fitness culture.

This caring approach considers individual preferences and needs, promoting self-acceptance and overall well-being while promoting a positive and inclusive approach to fitness.

CURVY FASHION: HOW TO STYLE BEST AT 50-PLUS

Irrespective of your size, maintaining good health and incorporating physical activity into your routine is essential. As you reach the age of 50, your metabolism slows down, increasing the likelihood of weight gain around the midsection.

Rather than turning to strict diets, adopting a healthy lifestyle can boost metabolism. Learn more about how to increase your metabolism This includes maintaining a balanced diet, increasing physical activity, ensuring sufficient sleep, and managing stress.

When integrating physical activity into your routine, do so in a safe and manageable way, while promoting a positive and inclusive approach to fitness.

Consulting with a healthcare professional before starting a new exercise regimen is crucial. Exercise not only improves physical well-being but also contributes to a positive mental state.

SEEK ADVICE

To prevent burnout and maintain interest in exercise, start gradually and choose activities that match your fitness level. Seeking guidance from a doctor or qualified fitness expert can help tailor an exercise plan to your individual needs and health conditions.

Considering all of the above, it's crucial to love and accept yourself just the way you are. Embracing self-love and being seen for who you truly are, not just as someone who is overweight, is a significant step in feeling confident and content with yourself.

A thought-provoking story by Aubrey Gordon, who wrote anonymously as Your Fat Friend, sheds light on the social challenges individuals face with a significant amount of excess weight.

She emphasizes the importance of being recognized for your thoughts and ideas rather than being labelled solely based on your weight.

It's about being seen as a woman with unique perspectives, not just a woman with extra weight. Sometimes, when society always highlights your weight, your opinions may be overlooked or considered differently.

The key is to be acknowledged as yourself, without the constant focus on your weight. It's not about saying, "I don't see you as fat," but rather acknowledging and appreciating the person as a whole.

While societal norms may take time to change, it's essential to stay true to yourself and maintain a positive attitude about your body. Body-positive fitness encourages everyone to engage in exercise and appreciate their bodies, regardless of their size.

ACTIVEWEAR & WORKOUT CLOTHES

Pay attention to the fabric of the clothes you choose, especially if you tend to sweat easily. Fabrics like polyester, nylon, rayon, and faux leather may trap or absorb moisture, causing discomfort when sweating.

When looking for fabrics suitable for sweaty conditions, opt for moisture-wicking materials like cotton blends, technical fabrics, or those specifically designed for activewear.

Nowadays materials are often treated or engineered to have moisture-wicking properties, effectively redirecting sweat away from the skin.

Stretchy material

Choosing the right workout clothes is essential for a comfortable and effective exercise routine. Here are some top materials to consider, each with its unique benefits:

  • Moisture-Wicking Fabrics: Polyester and nylon are excellent choices for keeping you dry during workouts by efficiently wicking away moisture. 
  • Bamboo Fabric: Known for its softness and moisture-wicking properties, bamboo fabric offers comfort and natural antibacterial benefits.  
  • Climacool (Adidas): has a 'moisture-wicking technology and is engineered to maintain the body's coolness and dryness during physical activity.
  • Spandex, also known as Lycra or Elastane, offers elasticity and flexibility, enabling a broad range of motion during exercise. It contributes to preserving the garment's shape and ensures a comfortably snug fit.
  • Cotton Blends: If clothes are all cotton, they can soak up sweat and feel kind of heavy. But if you go for a mix, like cotton with modal, it can make your workout gear more breathable and comfy, especially for lighter exercises.
  • Mesh: Mesh panels or entirely mesh clothing enhance breathability, allowing for air circulation and heat dissipation during intense activities.
  • Compression Fabrics: Clothes that squeeze a bit, often made from a mix of spandex and nylon, can give your muscles support, help them feel less tired, and improve blood flow.
  • Amazon offers a diverse range of products catering to fuller sizes, making them a superb addition to your activewear collection.
  • Enhance your comfort with breathable leggings tailored for full-figured ladies, offering a perfect blend of style and ease for every activity.
  • Coolmax: A type of moisture-wicking polyester fabric crafted for activewear, Coolmax stands out as a notable brand in this category.

When opting for a particular brand, many women prefer Nike or Adidas.

TIPS FOR SHOPPING SUCCESS

Are you geared up for a shopping spree in pursuit of that perfect item? Whether you're aiming for a standout ensemble or a classic addition to your closet, these simple tips will enhance your shopping journey.

Let's jump in and discover the extraordinary within the shelves and aisles!

Crafting a well-informed curvy wardrobe begins here.

Know your body shape

Know your body shape, so you can figure out the kind of clothes that will suit you best.

Make comfort a top priority

Stretch fabric enhances plus-size shopping, providing a satisfying, figure-hugging fit that surpasses typical sizing experiences.

Don’t go for price but focus on quality

Choose well-made items that fit nicely and last a long time.

Shop with confidence

Confidence is essential. Embrace your unique style and walk with assurance while shopping.

Know your size and understand sizing

Sizes can differ between brands, so don't hesitate to try different sizes for the best fit.

Don’t buy something just because it is in the sale

You are likely to regret this afterwards, as you are not looking for what you need to build up your wardrobe.

Do not buy something that ALMOST fits

You are likely to regret this afterwards!

Seek professional help

Consider getting assistance from a personal shopper or stylist who specializes in curvier figures for personalized guidance.

Think of building up your wardrobe

 Jot down what you intend to find during your shopping trip to avoid distractions.

Welcome the idea of tailoring

Explore tailoring options to guarantee your clothing fits flawlessly and complements your silhouette.

Highlight your best features

Emphasize your favourite parts, whether it's your neckline, arms, or legs, to showcase areas you love.

Experiment with styles

Try out different styles, patterns, and colours to find what makes you feel confident and stylish. Layering can add a polished look.

Make sure you can return the item.  If you buy anything online, then be aware of the return policy. 


HIGH-STREET PLUS-SIZE BRANDS

Today, numerous shops cater specifically to plus-size women, acknowledging diverse body types and promoting inclusivity in fashion. Check below for some of these dedicated stores.

SOCIAL MEDIA AND ONLINE COMMUNITIES 

If you're seeking style inspiration, why not explore the online realm of curvy fashion influencers?

Social media

By checking out these inspiring individuals, you'll discover countless ideas that can reshape your perspective on fashion and positive thinking. Plus-size influencers are involved in diverse activities, championing body positivity, inclusive fashion, and self-love.

Watch Jessica Torres in her video on 'How To Be Fat and Confident,' where she provides insights into what she did to build up her confidence. 

Plus-size influencers guide you in dressing confidently and expressing your unique style. Some noteworthy influencers include Lauren Nicole, Kellie Brown, Curvynyome, Callie Thorpe, Essie Golden, and Nicolette Mason.

Also, think about joining or starting online movements on social media to challenge stereotypes and promote inclusivity.

Here are some notable plus-size support communities to check out:

CONCLUSION 

Step into the world of curvy fashion for those in their 50s and beyond, where style is more than just clothing - it's a celebration of who you are.

From understanding your body shape to curating a wardrobe that highlights your plus-size beauty, the journey is about embracing individuality and self-love.

This blog is your guide, offering everyday wear tips, seasonal fashion advice, and encouragement for body-positive fitness. Uncover effective shopping strategies and connect with supportive communities where you can share your plus-size fashion experiences and find empowerment through community engagement.

Above all, remember that confidence originates from within and radiates brightly outward. It's not just about what you wear; it's about confidently expressing your unique self and celebrating the best version of you in the lively world of curvy fashion, where style has no age or size limitations. 

Birgit is a compassionate guide specializing in supporting senior women through life's transitions. Alongside her dedication to this cause, she finds joy in teaching piano, nurturing her garden, cherishing family moments, and enjoying walks. These activities fuel her creativity and bring depth and richness to her life.


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