Why would I want to look taller?

It feels a bit taboo to admit you’d like to look taller. After all, here we are championing the petite revolution, empowering short women everywhere, and at the same time sneaking in advice articles on how to disguise this most undesirable of afflictions.

Look, we don’t mind being short (maybe we ARE a bit cute), but what we do want is to look well-balanced and in-proportion, and these body-lengthening illusion tips have the added benefit of doing just that.

So, let’s agreed that while ‘5 easy ways to look taller’ made for a quick and pithy title, what we’re all here for is some good, solid advice on how to truly do our figure justice when we want to.

When should I try to look taller?

Off the top of our head:

  • For a job interview
  • At one of those excruciating local networking events
  • When you have to give a presentation at work
  • To confront your next door neighbour about how loud they have their telly
  • When meeting your ex and wanting to give the impression of post-breakup thriving
  • For a mortgage appointment with the bank manager
  • If you’ll be the only woman in a room full of blokes

Let’s get straight to it.

 

1. Tie your hair back

Hear us out. Or better yet, go stand in front of the mirror and see for yourself. This is for you girls with longer hair (past the shoulder) – if you’ve got short hair, that is already working in your favour in respect of height.

If you want to look taller, a really simple way to do this is to show off your neck – this will instantly elongate you. You can tie it back however you like, or add additional height by wearing it in a high ponytail, twist, or bun. Literal but it does work.

Conversely, if you have very long hair (beautiful as it is), wearing it down can make you look shorter for a few reasons; it can swamp your frame, it tends to draw the eye downward, and it interrupts or covers up areas where you could otherwise show some skin. Why does that matter? Well, in a lovely segue to our next point…

2. Show some skin

This one’s counter-intuitive. It makes more sense that having a longer block of colour (from your neck to your shoes) would elongate you. You’d think that breaking up this area would segment your frame and make you look shorter.

But it doesn’t. Showing some skin actually has the opposite effect, and makes you look taller. How? By creating the illusion that there’s extra space. A perfect example is wearing high-waisted trousers with a cropped top – you just want to show a sliver of skin.

The same rule applies for showing your neck and chest area (Bardot tops, square and sweetheart necklines, for example), ankles (cropped or cuffed trousers) and arms or legs (perhaps because they’re more slender parts of our body – who knows).

3. Go monochrome

One of the oldest tricks in the book when it comes to looking taller is to wear monochromatic outfits, or colour-block in all one shade.

If you’re worried about your outfit looking a bit basic, the best way round this is to mix up different textures and fabrics within your outfit, and try layering different pieces to add interest.

This goes for your shoes, too. For the ultimate heightening effect, go for pointed shoes or boots that match your trouser colour (black is ideal). If you’re wearing a dress, nude shoes that match your skin colour, or a similar colour, won’t cut you off at the ankle, and instead draw the eye down and lengthen your legs. It seems a bit patronising to mention wearing heels, but also a bit silly to omit in an article that’s all about how to look taller.

4. Elongate your legs

A girl can dream, eh.

The best way to make your legs look longer, and you look taller overall, is to wear them fitted, high-waisted, and in a dark colour.

It stands to reason that the less width you create, the taller you’ll look in comparison. Afraid that means out with the mom jeans – on your tall days, at least.

It’s not a myth, either – black does tend to be more slimming, and in general, darker colours tend to minimise our size, so pale trousers are more likely to make you look shorter (unless they’ve got vertical stripes, perhaps).

And finally, high waisted styles – of course. The holy grail of wardrobe staples when you’re petite. Unless you’re particularly short in the body (in which case, a mid-rise might be better), high-waisted trousers will almost always elongate your figure and make you look taller and better-proportioned. Just remember to tuck your top in, or it doesn’t count.

5. Nip in all the right places

If you’re self-conscious about your figure, it’s natural to want to wear loose, comfortable shapes that skim over anything you want to hide.

But listen. No matter your size, wearing baggy pieces will always make you look bigger (wider) than you are, and that is the nemesis of trying to appear taller.

So try and choose more fitted pieces, or pieces that show your figure more. We promise you’ll look slimmer for it, even if it’s outside your comfort zone at first.

If you’ve got a defined waist, make sure that you show it off, by belting a loose dress or tucking in your top. Otherwise, how about showing your legs – even if it’s a midi skirt, but mini’s even better.