Dressing for height is all about drawing the eye from the bottom of the body to the top. You want to avoid bringing attention to your lower half or out to the sides. Follow these tips and you’ll learn how to dress with complete confidence and create the illusion that you’re taller than you really are.
Most mens clothing is cut loose to fit the biggest variety of body shapes, but if you don’t fill out the clothes you wear it can look like you’re shrinking inside them. If you can’t find slim fitting clothes it’s worth investing in tailoring. A correctly tailored jacket will show that your chest is larger than your waist, drawing people’s eyes up.
Pants should be worn at the waist, not the hips, unless you’re still in high school! The same goes for baggy crotches. Choose a style that has the highest in-seam you’re comfortable with, they’ll make your legs appear as long as they can.
Tall men look like giants because their heads are small in proportion to their bodies, whereas shorter men appear to have larger heads in comparison. Wearing large accessories, such as a watch with an oversized face, a chunky belt or hiking boots, add to this illusion, so choose smaller items that are in proportion to your body size.
Invest in accessories that sit high up on your body. Instead of a designer belt or feature-studded watch, go for a pork pie hat, sunglasses or a pocket square. As less common accessories, they’ll make you stand out more.
Pants that contrast with your top break the body line, making you look like two smaller halves. If all your similar tops are in the wash, opt for a lighter top and darker pants. The exception to this is the all-black outfit, you don’t want to disappear at night-time!
Your feet should appear a natural extension of your legs, but with contrasting shoes they’ll look tacked on to a small body.
As with a tight fitting jacket, cuffs peeking out from your jacket arms create the illusion that you’re slightly outgrowing the clothes you wear.
Have your pant legs taken up to avoid bunching of material at the ankle. If they’re cut at a length that’s a little on the short side it will have the same effect as cuffs poking out from your jacket arms: longer legs. The same goes for ankle cuffs, avoid as they’ll draw attention to your feet.
A shorter haircut has the effect of elongating the neck and chin. Keep the sides trimmed short and go for volume on the top.
Ties are a great way to appear taller because they draw the eye up the body. Opt for a narrow style that you can tie in a smaller knot.
As with your tie, opt for a jacket with thinner lapels than usual. Big collars that splay outward also create width, so go for smaller ones with tips that point downward.
Have a look at where your dress shirt comes down to in the mirror, if it’s covering most of your fly cover, your legs will appear shorter than they really are.
Horizontal stripes draw people’s eyes out to the sides of your body, making you appear shorter than you really are. Opt for narrow vertical stripes or corduroy pants to draw the eyes up the body.
For an ideal fit, the waist button on your jacket should be above the navel. It’ll draw the eyes up, creating a longer-looking torso and legs. Avoid jackets with vents at the back as they flare out and draw attention to the middle of the body. The same goes for distracting pocket flaps, slit pockets are much more inconspicuous.
Buttoned jackets create a slimmer silhouette that accentuates the chest. The diagonal lines will also make your shoulders appear larger, in addition to the extra bulk of shoulder padding.
Shorts draw attention to your legs and their length compared to others around you. Breathable linen pants can be just as comfy in summer, and they’re classier too.
As with shorts, a short sleeve business shirt will draw attention to your arms and their smaller length. Instead, roll up the sleeves of a long sleeved shirt to create the appearance of a longer limb.
Vests draw attention to the middle of your body, away from your eyes. Belts do the same thing while also dividing the body into two smaller halves.
Suspenders are a unique accessory that few guys consider wearing, but they’re great for drawing the eyes up. They’ll also force you to wear your trousers at the proper height and eliminate the need for a body-dividing belt.
V-neck sweaters and shirts are excellent neck extenders.
Shoe lifts are height-increasing soles that can be inserted into shoes you already own, adding a modest, but not unnoticeable 1.2 to 1.6cm. For a more significant increase of 6 to 10cm, try elevator shoes. These are designed to incorporate a built in sole and look identical from the outside. Have a look at our latest styles to see for yourself.
Most importantly of all, wear clothes that you’re comfortable in. While it’s good to be brave every now and then and try an item you’ve never worn before, don’t wear something if you can’t be 100% confident in it. If you’re proud of your appearance you’ll also stand up taller and walk up to more people anyway.