How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (2023)

Are you petite? Do you have inverted triangle shape?

First, I want to start with that I am also petite (I’m 5’2″) and my site is about fashion for short women. I have many readers who reached out and asked about how to dress their broad shoulders.

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Celebrities with Petite Inverted Triangle Body Shape

If you are not sure what is an inverted triangle shape (sometimes known as the strawberry shape), in today’s Hollywood, these petite celebs have the most typical inverted triangle shape.

How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (1)
How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (2)

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(Video) How to Dress an Inverted Triangle Body Shape: Petite Women 5’4” and Under

What it Means to Be a Petite Inverted Triangle Body Type

Inverted triangle shares some similar characteristics with rectangle shape.

Some women are clearly inverted triangles. Others tend toward some features of being rectangle shaped, but are slightly triangular in an inverted way.

At Petite Dressing, we believe each petite body type have their own unique treats and everyone has the potential to be attractive, as long as we use the right dressing techniques to enhance our assets.

First things first, let’s take a look at what is an inverted triangle shape.

  • You have prominent and broad straight shoulders, which are wider than your waistline or your hips.
  • Like the rectangle shape, you are likely to have athletic build
  • You have ample bust and a wide back. Your chest may be larger and your back may be fuller than petite rectangles.
  • You have a proportionally larger upper body
  • You tend to have rather flat buttocks. Your hips are slim and your bottom may have a tendency towards the flat side
  • Your waist is subtle and you have a tendency to gain weight first in your belly and upper body, especially your back, when you gain weight.

In one word, petite inverted triangle shape women have an “athletic build”, and above are the typical features of petite body shape.

However, because human body have some many different variations, most likely not one body would fit into all features of one body type. If you feel like you have some but not all of the traits above, it is possible you are a combination of inverted triangle and other body types. Click on Petite Body Type to read more and take the quiz and find out what body type is closest to you.

Strengths and Weaknesses of of Petite Inverted Triangle

Now that we talked about how to define the inverted triangle shape, it may have become clear to you that the best assets is your beautiful, shapely legs. Even if you are petite, you are still likely to have nice toned legs, which is one of your best assets you should accentuate.

The key to dress an inverted triangle body type is to balance your broader shoulders, chest and back with your narrower lower body to create more of an hourglass effect.

This is achieved by choosing clothes that add curves to your hips and bottom while creating a more defined waist.

For instance, a nipped-in waist and flared bottom will add curves to your hips. I will get into more details next.

(Video) Inverted Triangle Body Shape "Do's and Don'ts", Part 1

Best Tops for Inverted Triangle Shaped Petite Ladies

First of all, because you are petite, you need to always make sure your tops are well fitted. Anything loose or shapeless never looks good on a shorter woman.

Tops with vertical detail

The inverted triangle shape should think vertical- as anything that has width in a horizontal direction is only going to make your shoulders look wider.

For petite women, another benefit of wearing vertical details is they will also visually create length in your body, and thus make you look taller. Consider vertical stripes, thin lapels, and vertical seams that draw in at the waist. Princess seams, side paneling, pin tucks and top stitching all look great on inverted triangle shaped petite women.

It is important for the inverted triangle to create some balance between the slimness on your bottom half and the width of the top.Tops with vertical details on the upper body will make your upper body look more slender and therefore will balance with your slim bottom half.

Deep V neck tops

You will look great in tops with narrow v-necks and nipped in waists that flare slightly at the hip, as they will narrow your upper body while creating some curves around the hip.

Wearing deep shawl collared or lightly coweled tops, particularly in dark colors with a light shell underneath will also achieve the same effect.

Deep V-neck wrap style tops is universally flattering to petite women, because they makeyour neck look longer and proportion look better. They are especially suitable for inverted triangle shape petite women.

Tailored button down

You will also look great in a highly tailored button downs that emphasize your waist and can be unbuttoned at the throat. Even collarless looks are great for inverted triangle shape, especially if you can unbutton at the top a bit and the shirt is tailored at the waist.

What not to wear

If you want to distract people’s attention away to your prominent shoulders, you may want to stay away from strapless tops and off shoulder tops.These tops draw attention to your broad shoulders and make them more noticeable than any other necklines.

The Importance of a supportive bra

For inverted triangle shaped women, your bra can help to balance the width of your shoulders by bringing more attention and definition to your bust. The right bra will help to accentuate your waist and give your more options when it comes to tops and dresses.

(Video) How to Dress an INVERTED TRIANGLE Body Shape

Best Jeans for Petite Inverted Triangle Shape

Best Jeans style

We mentioned earlier your best assets are your beautiful legs.

In order to balance your bottom with your prominent shoulders, what you can do is to create volume in your bottom half. These are the best leg shapes and most flattering on your figure.

  • Boot cut
  • Slightly flared
  • Trouser cut jeans
  • Wide leg jeans
How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (3)
How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (4)

Since you are petite, the best jeans are those with asubtle flare at the hemline. Because of your petite height, you don’t want the flare to be too exaggerated, which would widen you horizontally and make you look shorter.

For petites who have the inverted triangle shape, you need to make sure the wide legs pants are full length.You should avoid wide leg pants at crop length because they can make your legs look cut off.

Jeans with pocket details

Whiskering at the hips and flap-pockets will add curves to your lower half. Similar to petite rectangle shape, if you want to create some curves back, then you should go for jeans with pocket details.

How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (5)

Jeans with brighter colors

Best petite jeans for you is straight or skinny jeans in light or bright color, which will balance your broad shoulders and add some femininity to your athletic body frame.


Olive color jeans has been the favorite choice of color for jeans by many Hollywood celebrities and models in recent years, because it is sexy, classic and chic.

Best Pants for Petite Inverted Triangle Shape

Similar to jeans, pants with wide or flared legs are flattering to your figure.

Side pockets or flap-style back pockets also help balance your upper body.

Cargo style pants are particularly flattering because they add volume to your legs which balance out with your wider top.

How to Dress Petite Inverted Triangle Shape: Dos and Donts (6)

Best Skirts for Petite Inverted Triangle

You have amazing legs so feel free to play with skirt lengths, but don’t go too short otherwise you will further a top-heavy look.

A-line skirts fill out your slight hips while balancing your upper body. Look for details around the hips or bold colors and prints to further enhance the effect.

Full or ballerina type skirts add curves to your lower half and balance your broader, upper body. You have great legs, so feel free to play with length.

As a petite woman, you should especially pay attention to thelength of the skirt because when the hem of a skirt falls across a thick part of the leg, either thigh or calf, it makes you look wider and shorter.

In most cases, the best skirt length for short women is 3-4 inches just above the knee. However,don’t go too short otherwise you will further a top-heavy look.

Everything Else You need to Know about Inverted Triangle Shape

  • Inverted Triangle Shape: Ultimate Guide
  • How to Dress Broad Shoulders
  • Bathing Suits for Inverted Triangle Shape
  • Wedding Dresses for the Inverted Triangle Shape


What should I wear for a petite inverted triangle body shape? ›

Best Clothing Styles for an Inverted Triangle Body
  • Blouses and tops with U, V, scoop, or asymmetric necklines.
  • Blouses with flared long sleeves like Japanese or kimono.
  • Tank tops with wide, thicker straps.
  • Peplum tops.
  • Dark-colored, plain tops.
  • Jackets that extend beyond the hips.
Feb 11, 2021

What should you not wear with an inverted triangle body? ›

Avoid Wide and Low Necklines

When you're trying to draw the eye away from your shoulders, you'll want to consider the necklines of your tops. With an inverted triangle body shape, you should avoid wide and low necklines. That includes styles like boat necks, V-necks, and plunging necklines.

How do you wear an inverted short triangle? ›

Shorts for the inverted triangle body shape should add volume to the lower body and hips. Great styles are wide, baggy and printed shorts. These will balance with the body's broader shoulders. Shorts should have pleats and fuller legs to add width to the hips.

What shoes should inverted triangle wear? ›

Inverted triangle body shape

"Big" shoes such as wedges, platforms, and heels with a medium to chunky heel are great. Ankle straps for when its hot outside, and ankle boots, Ugg boots, and cowboy boots work well when it's a bit chillier.

What sweaters look best on inverted triangle body shape? ›

Sweaters for the Inverted Triangle Body Shape

Knitwear will add volume regardless of the knit gauge so keep it simple in flat knits. Slim turtlenecks, crew neck, or v-neck sweaters that either are tucked into a waist-defining bottom or fall below the hipline.

Where do inverted triangles gain weight first? ›

If you gain weight it tends to show up in your upper body first, but it can show up in your waistline eventually. Your legs come straight down from your hips with no curve in the thigh unless it's from your muscular thighs. Your body is angular and straight.

What is the best T shirt for inverted triangle? ›

The best tee shirts for inverted triangle bodies have a V-neck or deep scoop neckline. These draw the eye down and make your shoulders look narrower. Elbow, 3/4 or long sleeves move attention away from your shoulders and help add balance. Looser cuts that skim the torso and waist are most flattering.

Where do inverted triangles put on weight? ›

If you have an inverted triangle body shape, you'll have a proportionately larger upper body, with broad shoulders, an ample bust and a wide back. Your hips are slim and your buttocks may be towards the flat side with a subtle waist. You'll have a tendency to gain weight in your belly and upper body.

How rare is a inverted triangle body type? ›

Body Type 2: Inverted Triangle

This shape is the classic 'swimmer's physique': broad, developed chest and shoulders taper down to a narrow waist and hips. It's a rare physique to have, with just five percent of the population naturally having this figure.

Can inverted triangle bodies wear baggy shirts? ›

If you want to opt for some baggy tops you want something that will distract or minimize the shoulder and/ or bust. Go for necklines that are deep, narrow, and asymmetric. Trapeze and wrap are great for your shape. Drop shoulder, dolman, kimono, and wide straps sleeves are suited towards inverted triangles.

Can inverted triangles wear skinny jeans? ›

Avoid skinny jeans

Skinny jeans are not a style of jeans for the inverted triangle shape because of your undefined waist and slim legs. Wearing this style of jeans would only make more obvious the width of the shoulders more and draw so much attention to your small lower frame.

Are straight leg jeans good for inverted triangles? ›

Watch for things that may not be flattering for an inverted triangle body type. Jeans with no pockets or large rear pockets will make your tush look less shapely. Dark, solid-colored jeans will make your hips look smaller, and standard, straight-legged jeans will make your waistline less defined.

Which hair style is best for Triangle face? ›

Below, take a look at 10 of the best hairstyles for people with a triangle face shape.
  • 03 of 10. A Short Pixie Cut. ...
  • 04 of 10. Face-Framing Layers. ...
  • 05 of 10. Bob with Bangs. ...
  • 06 of 10. Half Up with Waves. ...
  • 07 of 10. Deep Side Part. ...
  • 08 of 10. Short Beachy Waves. ...
  • 09 of 10. High Box Braid Ponytail. ...
  • 10 of 10. Sleek Low Fishtail. Getty Images.
Aug 16, 2022

How should an inverted triangle dress? ›

How to add balance to your inverted triangle figure
  1. add volume to your lower body if you're looking for balance and curves.
  2. draw attention to your lower body with bold prints and light colors.
  3. add softness to the shoulder line using soft or weighty fabrics, narrower necklines, and solid colors.
Apr 11, 2022

Can inverted triangle wear turtleneck? ›

It can be a bit matronly. If you need to wear a crew neck or turtleneck, then throw on a cardigan or jacket in a contrasting color. V-Necks and Scoop Necks work well on all inverted triangle shaped women. It breaks up that upper chest area visually and feels more open and comfortable on you.

Can inverted triangle wear puff sleeves? ›

Of course you can! Just take into account our tips: Wear puff sleeves if you have an hourglass body and you want to emphasise your waist even more. If you have an inverted triangle body shape, choose tops or blouses with subtle puff sleeves or darts and combine them with looser bottoms, such as flared trousers.

What is reverse triangle eating? ›

The inverted triangle shows the quantity of food that has to be taken from morning till evening. Break Fast. Just imagine the wide triangle base which forms our breakfast menu. Our tummy is as open as the wide triangle base, after a long gap of 10 hours.

Do inverted triangles have a small waist? ›

The Inverted Triangle S Body shape is distinctive, as the shoulders are broader than the hips and rarely is the waist much smaller than the hips. The waist is not 8-10 inches smaller than the hips, as it would be in the Hourglass Body Shape. Usually, the waist is only 1-3 inches smaller than the hips or shoulders.

What body type do men prefer? ›

According to a new study published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior, women with a 'low waist-to-hip ratio (WHRs)' – commonly known as an 'hourglass figure' – are seen to have the most attractive bodies.

What ethnicity has inverted triangle body shape? ›

The Apple Shape:

The “Apple Shape” or the “Inverted Triangle” body type is the most common figure amongst Indian women.

What are the benefits of inverted triangle body? ›

The Pros / Cons of being an Inverted Triangle:

Inverted triangles generally have beautiful wide shoulders, and often look taller and more confident at first glance. You probably also have great legs and should be able to wear clothes beautifully - assuming you choose the right ones.

Is inverted triangle body shape attractive? ›

Actually, a well-toned inverted triangular-shaped body is considered to be one of the more coveted body shapes. Many models and athletes have this shape, so you're in great company if you do too.


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