Just because you lack the height doesn’t mean you can’t be big in style.
Your smaller stature shouldn’t be a hindrance to looking like a fine, stylish man. Don’t believe me? You may be surprised that some of the most fashionable men in showbiz, like Tom Cruise, Al Pacino, Bruno Mars, James McAvoy, and Daniel Radcliffe, are no taller than 5’7”.
If you know how to dress well, height is (and forever will be) just a number. We round up 10 style tips, according to industry experts, that’ll help you look taller, leaner, and more stylish.
1. Pay attention to your shoes
You know the drill: wear a pair of shoes with a bit of height or use shoe lifts to stand a few inches taller. Aside from these tried and tested tricks, there are more hacks to looking taller using shoes.
- Don’t contrast too heavily with trousers. For instance, if you’re wearing black denim, try to avoid white sneakers. Instead, go for dark-colored sneakers that are in the same palette as your pants. Low contrast footwear helps elongate the legs.
- Go for pointed-toe footwear. They visually lengthen the foot, and then, the leg. Squared or rounded-off toes can make the feet look shorter.
- Keep the shoe below the ankle. If you’re wearing shorts, it’s suggested to go for low-cut shoes that show more ankle. High tops or boots, whose rise is past the ankle, make your legs look visibly shorter.
2. Draw the eyes upward
In order to look taller, you’ll want the people’s eyes to sweep upward. This way, the attention is drawn to your face, not to your legs, which instantly give a hint about your height.
It’s okay to wear a hat, scarf, and a well-fitted blazer. Play around with collars and narrow lapels to lengthen the neck. You may also go for a vertical visual effect with vertical stripes, v-necks, and suspenders. Take inspiration from this bold Avora London Clothing top with vertical prints.
Keep the upward sweep by avoiding anything that will put the focus below your chest. Avoid flashy shoes, over-the-top watches, big belt buckles, and bold socks. The lower you go, the simpler your accessories should be.
3. Opt for a perfect fit, mid to high-rise trousers
Another great trick to looking taller is to wear your trousers at your natural waistline to maximize your leg line. Longer-looking legs are a major factor in looking taller.
Stay away from low-waisted trousers. Anything baggy is also a no-no. Instead, go for mid to high-rise trousers with a slimmer cut perfect for short men’s fashion.
4. Make sure your top doesn’t go past the hipbone
If you’re wearing a button-down shirt, stylists believe that tucking your shirt 90% of the time would look flattering. It’ll give you a slimmer physique and elongate your legs.
If you must un-tuck for a laidback event or if you’re wearing a T-shirt, which is meant to be un-tucked, make sure the hem doesn’t go past your butt and hipbone. Anything longer will mess up your proportion and make your legs look stubby.
5. Know what a good proportion looks like
The proportion should be a top consideration when you’re dressing to look taller. If you’re shopping for a suit, a well-proportioned get-up has the following elements.
- Shorter jackets that expose the leg more
- Narrower lapels that keep the shoulders from looking too wide.
- Slimmer shirt sleeve widths that make the arms look long and lean
- Medium rise trousers, with higher buttons for a higher waist and longer legs
- Back pockets that actually sit on your backside
This doesn’t only apply to formal wear – you can use this guide when shopping for your casual wear or streetwear clothing. If you fit things right, everything else will follow.
6. Go for a streamlined look
If you’re a shorter gentleman, you should be going for a streamlined look. To nail this look, remember to stay in the same color family (monochrome palette), and opt for light or dark colors. Avoid items that cut the torso in two. If you can’t go belt-less, keep your belts slim and your buckles modest.
7. Avoid wearing a short-sleeved button-down
While short-sleeved tops are comfortable during hot days, they shorten your arms. And when your arms look shorter, the rest of you follows. Experts suggest going for a long-sleeved shirt and then cuff the sleeves or rolling them up to your elbows for a sexier, leaner look.
8. Layer with a blazer
A nice blazer or suit jacket flatter shorter guys in different ways. First, it helps build up your shoulders, which adds a heightening effect. Secondly, by keeping it buttoned, your jacket helps create a slim silhouette, making your chest look beefed up and your waist looks smaller. Just make sure to go with a shorter cut that doesn’t go past your butt.
9. Stop shopping in the boys’ department
The clothes in the boys/teens department are not of the same quality as the ones in the men’s department. These are designed for kids growing out of them. Additionally, the proportions are likely to be off.
10. Tailoring isn’t always the key
If you’ve been reading a few style guides for quite some time, you may have learned that tailoring is the answer in most situations. That, however, is not always the case when you’re short.
You should be paying attention to proportion, scale, and fit. When you don’t know what you’re working with and you try to shorten and alter your clothes, you’re messing with these three crucial elements.
Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is a savvy writer for Northern Menswear, an online streetwear fashion website for men, delivering clothing and footwear products from top UK brands such as Unforgivable, Jameson Carter, Loyalti, Rose London, and Avora London. She loves sharing tips about fashion and lifestyle for trendy gents.