Got a fashion or beauty question you need advice on? Ask ELLE Canada’s experts, Miss Chic and Miss Blush!

Q: I am 15 lbs overweight and have an embarrassing problem with back fat. I have no waist either, which adds to the problem. What tops can I buy that will give me the look of a slimmer midsection?

A: My gal-pal Genny Iannucci, PR manager for clothing retailer Laura Canada, tells me that this concern is a common one for many women. In fact, it is an issue that women of all sizes, from 2 to 22, have to deal with.

Genny breaks it down for us in a few easy steps!

Step 1: “The best way to approach this figure challenge is to work from the inside out. Start off with a well-fitting bra. If your bra is too tight, the flesh both above and below the back strap will appear to ‘pop’ over the strap, creating the illusion of that undesirable ‘roll.’”

Step 2: “Tight waistbands on pants, skirts and pantyhose are also a surefire way to create the illusion of extra bulges, both in the tummy area as well as across the lower back. So avoid anything that is too snug around your waist.”

Step 3: “Try wearing a camisole under some of your tops. Camis act as
‘buffers’ between the skin and the actual garment, creating a much
sleeker silhouette. For the best effect, select a cami that skims your
curves and has some stretch in its blend. Avoid camis that cling.”

Step 4: “Look for fabrics that have a much more substantial feel. Avoid tops in thin, flimsy fabrics — you’ll ‘see’ everything. Denser fabrics are much better options for you.”

Step 5: “Always ensure you get the right fit. A size small in one store may be completely different than in another, so do some experimenting and find the store that offers a fit that works best with your silhouette. Moving a size up from what you are is another option.”

Step 6: “There are some gorgeous options that will give you a little more room through the back without looking too boxy. Empire waist tops that gently flare out from just under the bust line are a great option. As well, bohemian-inspired tunic tops are a great match.”

Happy shopping!

Page 1 of 2Q: I am 5’6″ and heavy in the tummy and thigh. What style and length of blazer should I wear to camouflage this?

A: Le Château, one of Canada’s largest retailers of cheap chic, has its own resident style maven, known to all fashionistas as the Fashion Guru. Turns out we have a lot in common when it comes to fashion, so I asked her for some help with this reader question!

According to Ms. Fashion Guru herself,

“There are a few simple rules that you can follow for finding the perfect blazer:

#1: Most importantly, make sure that the blazer has a tailored cut. A blazer that fits through the body and nips in at the waist will define your waistline and reduce the appearance of a tummy.

#2: Avoid anything with a boxy cut. Instead, look for something with more than one button. A tailored blazer with two or more buttons will draw attention up towards your face and will maintain a more structured, flattering shape.

#3: As for length, it is best to avoid a cropped blazer, which can shorten your torso and draw attention to the stomach area. Also remember that a long blazer (below the hip) adds bulk to the thigh and stomach. Opt for a blazer that ends at the hip. This will lengthen the your upper body and give the illusion of a slimmer tummy area. Once you determine the length and cut, then you can play with fabric and colours. Simple black or pinstripes are both classic looks that are great at disguising problem areas.

#5: Finally, make sure the blazer fits! If it’s too small (and pulls) or too big (and bunches), it will not be flattering, no matter how perfect the cut, colour or fabric.

#6: Don’t forget — if you feel good in it, then you look even better!”

Miss Chic is ELLE Canada’s go-to girl when it comes to fashion. Whether she’s scoping out the latest trends to hit the runways or mingling with some of the industry’s biggest stars, this style enthusiast is your connection to all the latest news in fashion!

Visit Miss Chic’s home page to read more questions and answers, or to submit your own!

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