Taylor Swift. Beyoncé. Jennifer Lopez. Meghan Markle. Celebrities seem to know how to dress themselves better than the rest of us. The truth is, though, that they all have their secret tips and tricks for accentuating their bodies and looking their best. And many of them can work for you too. So read on to find your favorite fashion-forward celeb – and see how you can make your wardrobe look red-carpet ready with just a few updates.
20. Gabrielle Union’s crafty hack for pulling off patterns
Patterned top, solid-colored bottoms – or vice-versa. That may seem like the only way to work a print into your look. But actress Gabrielle Union has shown us time and time again that you can wear a non-solid fabric with another patterned piece and make it work. Here’s how the star of Being Mary Jane host does it.
To mix patterns like Union – who broke into Hollywood in 2000’s Bring It On – choose designs that come in similar shades. Mixing prints in all different colors will look messy. But if you choose patterns in similar hues, it won’t overwhelm the eye to see them layered with one another.
19. Vanessa Hudgens’s secret to elongating the neck
You can’t change your frame – so, if you don’t have a supermodel-length neck, you won’t be able to grow one over time. What you can do is try out this trick from Vanessa Hudgens, best known as the star of all three High School Musical movies.
Hudgens often makes a point to accentuate her neck when she hits the red carpet, and her go-to methods create that elegant, elongated look. Sometimes, the star of Netflix’s The Princess Switch will wear turtlenecks to make her neck look longer. She also layers chokers and longer necklaces to create this effect too.
18. Tilda Swinton’s way of (visually) shrinking her feet
Tilda Swinton won an Oscar for her performance in the 2007 movie Michael Clayton. But the actress has mastered more than just her theatrical craft. She has also become a fashion icon for her bold, unique style, which has engendered this very easy, very effective fashion tip for those with larger feet.
Swinton wears a size eight shoe, but you wouldn’t know it when looking at her feet. That’s because she often wears two-tone shoes, which Coco Chanel designed for this very purpose. If you want even more of a shrinking effect, wear two-toned footwear with a rounded toe.
17. Keira Knightley’s leg-lengthening trick
Keira Knightley, the star of Bend It Like Beckham, measures in at an average height of five feet, seven inches. But when you see photos of her on the red carpet, the actress appears to be taller than that. That’s because she relies on this style tip, which keeps her legs looking long.
Many of Knightley’s red carpet looks are high-waisted, a style that instantly makes the legs look longer. And the two-time Oscar nominee will often add further definition to her high waist – and boost the effects of her higher-than-average bottoms – by wearing a belt or tucking in her shirt. You can easily put these tips into practice too, especially if you have some high-waisted skirts or jeans on hand already.
16. Marilyn Monroe’s enduring way to flatter your face with fashion
Marilyn Monroe passed away in 1962, but her face is still instantly recognizable to people around the world. The stunning blonde turned heads for many reasons, one of them being her classic style. It’s easy to replicate, too, so long as you know what Monroe hoped to achieve with her fashion: accentuating her face and curves, more than the clothes and accessories themselves.
Monroe stuck to neutral hues – camel, black and cream, mostly – so that her assets got top billing over the clothes themselves. The Some Like It Hot star skipped out on jewelry for the same reason. She told fanzine Modern Screen, “I don’t own even a little diamond the size of a pinhead.”
15. Chrissy Teigen doesn’t hide her curves – here’s why
Chrissy Teigen’s big modeling break came in 2010, when she featured for the 2010 edition of Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue. Clearly, the woman knows how to dress herself in a way that’s flattering. Her affinity for body-hugging outfits is one that any person can replicate, according to her stylist.
A bodycon dress or a top made of stretchy material will only enhance your curves and give you extra support. Teigen often follows this advice from her stylist, Anita Patrickson, who shared it with Self magazine in 2016. For even more flattery with this style, Patrickson told those with hourglass shapes to not “be afraid to show off the smallest part of your body,” a.k.a. your waist.
14. Jessica Alba’s tried-and-true combo for unexpected flair
Jessica Alba is a busy woman, working as both an actress and an entrepreneur at the head of The Honest Company. Somehow, she manages to look great while doing it all too. So she shared some of her best tips for throwing together a fashionable outfit on the fly with People magazine in 2016.
For a quick, fashion-forward look, Alba recommended partnering something tough looking with a more delicate garment. She explained, “Pairing pieces that are unexpected is definitely something I like to do. If you have a very feminine dress or skirt and top, it’s nice to break up the sweetness with a moto jacket or tougher shoe, like a bootie, so it doesn’t feel so saccharine.”
13. Jennifer Lopez doesn’t skip the shapewear
When you think of the best bods in Hollywood, Jennifer Lopez is sure to come to mind – and quickly rise to the top of the list. The actress and singer eats a nutrient-rich diet and follows a regimented workout schedule, of course. But she also relies on shape wear to keep her curves looking their best – she has even revealed her Spanx on an episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2018.
Her stylists, Mariel Haaen and Rob Zangardi, explained why everyone should do the same. They told Elle in 2015, “It doesn’t matter how in-shape you are, women of all body types and sizes benefit tremendously from a little extra help underneath their clothes… It helps smooth out any problem areas or bumps and helps any material slip on in the most flattering way.” If J.Lo’s doing it, so are we.
12. Reese Witherspoon uses these two elements to look taller
Reese Witherspoon’s just over five feet tall, but she knows precisely how to fool you into thinking she’s taller. You’re probably thinking, the Big Little Lies actress has to wear heels to give herself added height. That’s true, but it’s also only part of the equation.
Witherspoon often pairs her heels with knee-length dresses, thus creating the illusion that she has longer legs. And, as we know, people with prominent pins tend to be taller. If it works for the Oscar winner, it can work for you too – pop on some platform pumps to boost your visual height even more.
11. Khloe Kardashian’s trick for taking jeans from day to night
It’s no secret that Khloe Kardashian loves jeans. She co-founded her own clothing line, Good American, which began by selling denim pants in sizes ranging from 00 to 24. Making inclusive fashion is just one way that the reality TV star has helped us wear jeans more often, though.
Jill Jacobs, who styles Kardashian and her sister, Kylie Jenner, told Us Magazine how the Good American designer and others make jeans work all day long. She said, “You can never go wrong with a cool pair of vintage-inspired jeans and a T-shirt. You can wear that with sneakers during the day or heels at night and across the board, no matter my client, everyone always loves that effortless look.”
10. Beyoncé’s way of making an old wardrobe seem new again
It’s hard to imagine Beyoncé recycling any of the looks in her wardrobe. However, one of her most common styling tricks can help you refresh your staples. Her stylist, Zerina Akers, spoke to fashion website Refinery 29 in 2018, and divulged how brightly colored accessories can revolutionize a look – something Mrs. Carter herself often does.
Akers explained, “You can make your wardrobe feel new again by mixing some of this season’s bright colors with pieces you already own in last season’s more neutral tones. Invest in some colorful accessories, like fun earrings or bright pumps, to refresh your favorite winter looks.” And, with that, you’ll be one step closer to becoming Queen Bey.
9. Sarah Jessica Parker’s fashionable method for balancing out her frame
Sarah Jessica Parker’s known by many as Carrie Bradshaw, the character she played on Sex and the City. Both her fictional alter ego and the real-life S.J.P. have something in common: they have a taste for bold fashion. But if you see the actress wearing an outfit with voluminous sleeves – she does so often – don’t think it’s just for style’s sake.
It turns out that having extra volume on your shoulders has a slew of benefits. For one thing, it draws the eye upward, accentuating the chest. Plus S.J.P. might like bold shoulders for their ability to create a more defined hourglass shape. Having voluminous fabric up high makes the waist look even smaller and more defined.
8. Priyanka Chopra’s secret to looking good in any outfit
Priyanka Chopra always wows on the red carpet, and she doesn’t have to wear something over the top to do it. The Isn’t It Romantic? actress told Hello Giggles website in 2016, “I am not someone who is like, ‘I want to break the internet with what I am wearing!’ I don’t think like that.”
Instead, the former Miss World revealed why she always looks great – and it comes from within. Chopra explained, “I wear what I feel, and I need to feel my best in what I wear. I decide on my clothes based on that. I’ve had a lot of great reviews for what I wear, but I really don’t wear my clothes for that reason. I pick outfits to feel the best that I can feel, and I think that’s the only way to wear clothes.”
7. Kim Kardashian West knows how to flatter her curves
It’s no secret that Kim Kardashian West knows how to dress her shape. The reality TV star and beauty mogul has famous curves, and she has revealed how she makes them look so good. It’s all down to the right tailoring, says the wife of rapper Kanye West.
According to fashion website The Trendspotter, Kardashian West has said, “Anything you wear should be proportioned to your body, and a good tailor will make sure everything fits perfectly. Shortening a hemline on a dress can make a huge difference.” The social media star’s well-fitted attire serves to highlight her silhouette too, as opposed to oversized pieces that do nothing to flatter her curves.
6. Angelina Jolie’s method for oversized garments
Speaking of oversized garments, Angelina Jolie has a great tip for making them work. As we said before, extra-large pieces don’t always flatter the body. But you can try this hack from the Oscar winner, who often accentuates a sleek look with an oversized element.
Jolie’s oversized jackets, shirts and even extra-large accessories work because they’re only one element of her outfit. The rest of what she wears remains tailored and fitted to her body. That way, the bulkier element doesn’t overwhelm her frame. This tip’s easily transferable too: slip into a fluffy tulle skirt or a broader blazer and keep everything else form-fitting for a fashion-forward look.
5. Victoria Beckham’s go-to look for filling out her petite frame
Victoria Beckham was part of the Spice Girls, and her time in the spotlight made people realize that she knew how to dress. She parlayed her fashion-icon status into an eponymous clothing label, which has been a huge success. So it’s clear that she knows a thing or two about how to clothe herself.
Beckham has a uniform when it comes to flattering her petite frame. The former pop star tends to pair wide-leg trousers with flouncy blouses on top, but she’s always sure to highlight her waistline. The bits of extra fabric on top and bottom add volume to her silhouette, which magnifies her assets.
4. Kate Winslet’s asymmetrical silhouettes elongate her body
Kate Winslet is a decorated performer, one of the few with Oscar, Emmy and Grammy awards to her name. She has an artistic flair for dressing herself too – the Titanic star often dons asymmetrical gowns on the red carpet. They help her to stand out, of course, but these frocks also play a trick on the eye.
Having an asymmetrical top creates a longer vertical line from one shoulder all the way down to the bottom of the dress. As such, the top visually elongates the body and flatters the wearer. Perhaps that’s why Winslet wears one so often – and why you might add a few into your rotation too.
3. Kate Middleton’s classic styling means she can recycle fashion regularly
Having a totally trendy wardrobe is great… until what you’ve got goes out of style. If this happens to you often, take a page out of Kate Middleton’s book. Even with a presumably unlimited budget for fashion, the Duchess of Cambridge is often spotted repeating the same outfits at public events, and she does so years apart.
Investing in classic pieces means the Duchess can wear dresses, coats and even maternity clothes multiple times. When she does, though, she finds little ways to switch things up. For example, she might go with a different hairdo or choose different accessories the second time she wears the same getup, so that it feels new.
2. Taylor Swift shows her skin strategically
Taylor Swift’s fashion is just as good as her music – and she has sold more than 200 million records. The singer knows how to accentuate her assets, often finding a way to bare her long legs in her red carpet getups. However, she’s very strategic about how she shows skin.
When Swift shows off her legs in shorts, cocktail dresses or gowns with high slits, she tends to keep the rest of herself covered up. Strategic skin can draw the eyes to your best assets too – leave your arms, décolletage or legs exposed like Taylor, while ensconcing the rest of your frame behind fabric.
1. Meghan Markle relies on the Golden Ratio
Meghan Markle’s impeccable style sense comes down to a tried-and-true principle – seriously, the ancient Greeks used it to measure beauty two millennia ago. They call it the Golden Ratio, or phi, and they used it to determine which of nature’s creations were most beautiful. To find the golden ratio, they’d mark a line to divide between one-third and two-thirds of it.
To create the Golden Ratio with fashion, Markle often wears outfits with a defined, higher waistline. This creates a visual division between one third of the fabric on top and two-thirds of the fabric beneath it. This emphasizes her tiny waist, elongates her legs and shows off her silhouette. In other words, we should all try this too.