With so many studies pointing to height as the key to success and happiness, it’s no wonder so many people are striving to look just that bit taller. How short you are is relative, – for example a 5ft 7in man would be tall in Cambodia but short in The Netherlands – but it is still an issue some men and women worry about everyday and severely effects their self-esteem.
Yet many people don’t realize that if you’re feeling a tad self-conscious about your height, then there many ways you can get around it by ‘appearing’ to look taller. Sound difficult? Well here are 7 simple tips to help you out.
1. Vertical stripes
It may be trite, but the truth is that wearing vertical stripes really does make you seem that bit taller. Lines encourage the eyes to follow them up the body, giving the impression of extra length. The trick however, is in the subtlety. Narrow vertical lines have the same effect as bold stripes, but are much less likely to draw attention to the fact you’re wearing stripes to purposely enhance your height. The last thing you want is an outfit that screams
2. Avoid baggy clothing
This tip works especially well if you’re both short and thin, as baggy clothing can completely swap your frame – making you look smaller than you really are. Close, sharp fits will not only look much more stylish but also will suit your short frame much better.
3. Choose your formal wear with care
When it comes to choosing a suit, short men have extra considerations to make. Instead of going (like most men) for a suit that errs on the larger side, you should go for a much closer fit that does not end up sagging. Suspenders are also a great option as they look cool while also ensuring the trousers rest at your waist not your hips, lengthening your legs.
4. Dress in one (preferably dark) color
Wearing contrasting colors divides your body up into blocks, emphasizing the smallness of each part. To avoid this, you should try to wear varying shades of the same color. That way, your entire form is taken in by the eye instead of individual parts. Dark clothing is a help here too: black clothes may emphasize your narrowness but they will also lengthen you out by again presenting your body in a single block.
5. Consider lifts or height-adding shoes
The decision whether to buy lifts for your existing shoes or buy height-adding shoes can be tricky. While lifts might be over-kill for a person who is only slightly short, they may also look too obvious on someone who is undeniably small. As a rule of thumb, purpose-built height shoes are better than lifts; shoe inserts can be uncomfortable and embarrassing if noticed.
Height-adding shoes can be a great addition to your wardrobe as they are often subtle, while actually adding inches. The best key is to go with quality. The image that springs to mind of ugly, heeled shoes is actually far from the stylish height shoes now available from specialist stores online and in many retailers. By picking a pair of solid, stylish height shoes you will be able to add a few inches without looking like you are trying too hard.
6. Devise a strategy based on your height
There are certain tricks that play better depending on how short you are. If you are very short, a combination of height-adding shoes and quality fitted clothes will work quite nicely. If you’re only a few inches short of the average, then it is perhaps better to avoid lifts and focus on subtler tips like stripes and dark clothing.
7. It’s all in the attitude
There is nothing that draws attention to your height more than a Napoleon complex. By not constantly pointing out and stressing about your height, you will draw less attention to your short stature. Being comfortable in your own skin is often more important to looking good and exuding confidence than panicked attempts to look taller. While there’s nothing wrong with wanting to attempt to appear taller, you should also be comfortable with yourself – just as you are.
This is a contributed article from guest author Charlie Oszvald. Charlie is a fashion enthusiast, and now writes for Altitude Shoe a cutting edge of height increasing footwear, fashion and shoe technology.