Inverted Triangle Body Shape Guide

An inverted triangle body shape has broader shoulders, a smaller waist and slim hips, and usually has excellent legs. The goal of this body shape is to create a balance between the upper and lower body. This body shape is also known as the T-shape or V-shape. Clothes that elongate your torso and add volume to the lower body work best for this shape.

Figuring out your body shape

Everyone has a unique body profile, but most of us fall into one or two of the typical body shape profiles. It is totally normal to fall between 2-body types. Here are some of the common cross-overs:

Inverted Triangle leaning towards an Apple, without lots of exercise weight gain on the stomach and bust can occur. Weight gain on the bust, arms and stomach is quite normal after childbirth and leading up to and during menopause.

Roberta Style Lee _ PIN _ How to Dress the Inverted Triangle _ The V-shape _ The T Shape
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Best styles for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

  • A-line skirts that flare at the bottom to balance the shoulders
  • Wide-leg pants that create a vertical line
  • Tops with detailing (not bulk) around the waistline or hips
  • V-neck or scoop-neck tops that elongate the neckline and break up the broadness of the upper body
  • Wrap dresses or tops that define the waistline and offer a feminine flattering shape.

Best styles of tops for Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

Inverted Triangle _ Sleeves on tops

The more flattering styles of tops range from Trapeze, Peplum, Fitted T-shirts, Wrap and Fitted shirts with cuffs Opt for tops with soft, flowy fabrics that drape gently over the shoulders and bust – this can create a more relaxed and balanced silhouette.

Wrap-style tops can create a flattering and feminine look by cinching at the waist and drawing attention away from the shoulders. Scoop necklines that have a gentle curve can create a softer frame for the upper body and minimise the appearance of broad shoulders, softening the V-shape.

Best type of neckline for the Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

How to dress an Inverted Triangle _ Neckline of tops

Sweetheart, Asymmetric, Scoop, U-neckline and V-necks are all flattering and help break up the larger proportions of the upper body and draw the eyes away from the width of the shoulders.

Best styles of sleeves for Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

How to dress an Inverted Triangle _ Sleeves on tops

Sleeveless, Wide straps, Kimono, Dolman, Raglan, and Flare/Bell sleeves all offer some balance to the broader shoulders of the inverted triangle shape. Longer-length flutter sleeves can also be flattering and soften the frame.

Ruffles or frills on the end of long sleeves can add volume and create a visually interesting detail, shifting focus away from the shoulders. Any drama you can add below the waist works great on the triangle body shape’s narrow hips.

Best style of shorts for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

How to dress an Inverted Triangle _ Best Styles of Shorts

Asymmetric wrap- shorts that create an A-line work best. Bermuda, those with a decorative waist (A-line), and Tailored shorts, all help keep symmetry with the broader shoulder by adding width and shape to the lower body. Look for shorts with details such as pockets, pleats, or patterns around the hips and thighs to add volume to the lower body.

Avoid super tight shorts: this only highlights the narrowness of your hips and the broadness of your shoulders. 

Best style of trousers and jeans for an inverted Triangle (T) body shape

 How to dress an Inverted Triangle _ Trousers and Jeans best styles

Opt for Turn-up styles, Culottes, Palazzo, Fit and Flare, Bootcut and straight-leg versions all work well to offset broad shoulders. Experiment with different rises on trousers. To widen the hips go for a low-waisted style and wear it with a belt.

To create more definition of the waist stick to medium to high-rise cuts depending on the length of your torso.

Consider the fit and proportion of the trousers or jeans to ensure they feel comfortable and you are happy that they flatter your figure. Experiment with different styles and find the ones that make you feel confident and comfortable.  Remember this is just a guide, these aren’t rules just tools to help steer you towards styles that will help balance your silhouette. 

Best style of dresses for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

How to dress an Inverted Triangle _ examples of the best dresses for a T-shape

A-line dresses, round neck or v-neck, and layered or peplum dresses work great for balancing broad shoulders. The inverted triangle can explore dresses with skirts that have volume, frills layers and contemporary shapes. Keep the upper section simple and play around with how much volume you are comfortable wearing from the hips

Opt for dresses that draw attention away from the width of the shoulders, and keep the top part of the dress simple. You can have a lot of fun with different details, and ruffles, and ramp up the volume on your lower body. Wear big patterns, bold colours and prints on the lower half.

Best style of skirt for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

Best style of skirt for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

High-waisted versions of all skirts are best. A-line, Tiered, Full-circle skirts, Tulip, and Box pleated versions all work great to add volume to the lower body to balance broad shoulders.

Skirts with asymmetrical or diagonal hemlines that add visual interest and divert attention from the shoulders. Bubble skirts can also work by adding volume to the lower body and balancing out broad shoulders. 

Worst styles for Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

  • Shoulder pads and large lapels.
  • Horizontal stripes.
  • Ruffles, frills, or embellishments on the shoulders or bust (basically anything above the waist should be simple)
  • Overly fitted or tight outfits from head to toe, as this will highlight your narrow hips and broad shoulders.

Remember, these are general guidelines, and ultimately, personal preference and comfort should be taken into consideration when choosing clothing styles. Experimenting with different styles and finding what makes you feel confident and comfortable is key.

Clothing to avoid for an Inverted Triangle (T) body shape

The key to balancing out this gorgeous figure is to keep everything above the waist simple. Your goal is to avoid adding fuss and broadening your upper body further:

  • Boat neck or off-the-shoulder tops that widen the upper body
  • Puffed or embellished sleeves that add volume to the shoulders
  • Tops with horizontal stripes that highlight the width of the shoulders
  • Skinny or tapered trousers that imbalance and accentuate broader shoulders, unless worn with something loose at the top

Remember, personal style and preferences always come first, so these are just guidelines to keep in mind when styling your outfits. If you need additional guidance and support you can enquire about my online (video calls) or in-person availability in London.


Discover the best way to get started on your personal style journey     

Roberta Lee - The Sustainable Stylist sits in a chair laughing. She wears a hat and black blazer with cream skirt .

Can inverted triangle T-shaped figures wear any tight clothes?

In general, Inverted Triangle (T) shaped figures can wear tight clothes, but it’s worth considering certain factors to create a balanced silhouette: 

  • Avoid excessively tight clothes that emphasise the broadness of the shoulders and create an unbalanced look. If you go tight on the upper body team with the volume on the lower body. 
  • Choose fitted tops or dresses that accentuate your waist and hips to create the illusion of an hourglass figure.
  • Opt for tops or dresses with V-necklines or sweetheart necklines to balance out broader shoulders.

Famous Inverted Triangle (T) body-shaped celebrities

Famous celebrities who share this wonderful body shape include Naomi Campbell, Renée Zellweger and Angelina Jolie.

Keep in mind that body shapes can vary among individuals, and these celebrities also have unique proportions and variations within the Inverted Triangle category.  Take inspiration from them and adapt it to your own personal style and body shape.

Inverted Triangle shape - Famous shape for models
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Inverted Triangle body shape summary:

Remember to experiment with different styles and prioritise your own personal style and levels of comfort.  I know many T-shaped ladies, who don’t follow the T-body body shape rules all the time, they wear higher necklines and still look incredible. Not everyone likes V-necklines, so you do you.

Confidence is the best accessory, so wear what you like and do so with conviction. 

Variations of the Inverted Triangle (T)

There are additional variations of the Inverted Triangle (T) body shape, including the Wide Inverted V and the Athletic Inverted V, both share similar styling goals to create a balance between the shoulder and hips. Both of these variations share the primary characteristics of the Inverted Triangle (T) body shape, with the main difference in the extent of shoulder width, size of bust and overall body composition.

Wide Inverted Triangle :

This variation of the Inverted Triangle (T) body shape features shoulders that are significantly broader than the hips, creating a wide “V” shape. The waist may not be as defined as in the classic Inverted Triangle (T) body shape, and the lower body might be more toned. This variation usually includes a much fuller bust. The overall frame tends to be larger and prone to carrying more excess weight.

Athletic Inverted Triangle :

The Athletic Inverted V variation also has broad shoulders that create a V shape, but the overall silhouette is muscular and athletic. The waist may be more lean and naturally defined, and the lower body may have more muscle definition. The overall frame tends to be quite small.

Do you think that you’re an Inverted Triangle? Let me know.  Is there any Inverted Triangle body shape styling guidance that you ignore as it just doesn’t work for you?

Body shape series

Other blogs in the body shape series include:

What body shape am I?
How to measure your body accurately
How to dress an Hourglass Body Shape
How to dress a Pear (Triangle) Body Shape
How to dress a Ruler (Column) Body Shape
How to dress an Apple (Oval) Body Shape

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