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Body Shapes: The O Shape

Updated: Nov 11, 2023

For those of us who tend to gain weight around the middle instead of the hips or thighs, it is very easy to become an O shape (also called apple shape) when we become a little overweight. This often happens due to hormonal changes during menopause. It is common with V and H shapes, who have precious little waist definition to begin with, and with those who are proportionally short-waisted (long legs-short torso or balanced with short mid-body). Of course, pregnant women also - temporarily - fall into this category.

If you are O-shaped:

O shape or apple shape. What to wear and what to avoid
Body shapes explained: the O shape
  • Your waist appears as wide as, or wider, than your hips or shoulders

  • You are probably an H or V shape, or a petite, that has gained weight

  • You probably have great legs, and most likely beautiful smooth skin as well.

You will look great in:

  • Jeans/leggings with a long top

  • Longer jackets that hang open to create a column of colour

  • Empire line dresses/tunics

  • V-necks

  • Fabric that drapes but doesn't cling

  • Monochromatic outfits

  • Detail above the bust or below the knees

  • Larger-scale accessories such as chunky necklaces or interesting earrings


  • Waist detail like belts, pattern, gathers, pleats or pockets

  • Cropped or double-breasted jackets

  • Very fitted styles or bias cuts

  • A-line skirts


Creating a Vertical or Column

Draw attention away from your middle and to your face and/or legs


Buy clothes to fit your waist and have it taken in over the hips/thighs

Famous O-shapes:

  • Lizzo

  • Octavia Spencer

  • Rosie O'Donnell

  • Nikki Blonsky

  • Gabourey Sidibe

  • Melissa McCarthy

  • Rebel Wilson (before her dramatic weight loss. She is now a V shape)

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