How to Make Your Legs Look Longer
If you've ever found yourself wishing for an elongated appearance, you'll be happy to know it's surprisingly easy to achieve. You just have to know how to make your legs look longer with the clothes you wear. Luckily, there are countless outfit possibilities from your shoes to tops, bottoms and outerwear to achieve this look. Learn how to dress to make your legs look longer below!
1. Consider Your Proportions
Your entire figure may have different proportions that will influence how to dress short legs. If you want, accentuate or play down certain areas of your figure to help create balance. That balance means it's easier to elongate your legs. As you develop outfits, consider if you have features like:
- Broad shoulders or a large bust: If you have a triangular body shape, broad shoulders or a large bust might make your legs seem shorter compared to the heavier proportion up top. Play down these features of your figure if you want with fitted tops and looser bottoms.
- A long torso: An elongated upper body could make your legs seem shorter by comparison. Try to use a longer torso to your advantage with high-waisted bottoms.
- A short torso: A shorter torso keeps your body in proportion. You'll have to create the look of longer legs carefully to avoid making your torso seem extra short.
2. Wear Nude Shoes That Match Your Skin Tone
Wear shoes that match your skin tone to make your legs seem longer. This trick works best when you're wearing bottoms or a dress that shows off a bit of your legs. Shoes in other colors stop the eye once your legs end. A nude color that fits your skin tone continues the eye from your legs to your feet, giving the illusion of longer legs. You'll find an array of nude shades in different shoe types, making it easy to try this elongating style in options like:
- Pumps: Take this look from work to formal occasions. Matching nude pumps give you the benefit of added height with the heel, and they elongate your legs with their skin-matching color.
- Sandals: Because sandals are typically flat shoes, choosing a skin-matching nude shade can give the illusion of long legs. If you can't find sandals that feature an all-over nude color that matches your skin, find ones with clear straps to get the same effect.
- Booties: Since short boots would otherwise stop the eye right where your legs end, a matching nude color can transform your figure with an elongated appearance. Try to pick booties that don't feature too many details like ties, buckles or texture.
3. Avoid Ankle-Strap Shoes
Sandals or heels with a strap that wraps around your ankle stops the eye at the end of your leg. When the eye stops that soon, it emphasizes a shorter length for your legs. Instead, opt for shoes that are more open — the more of your foot and ankle you can see, the better. Use this trick especially when you're showing off your legs in shorter bottoms or dresses to maximize the effect.
If you like the ankle-strap style, compromise by finding these shoes in a matching nude shade or with a clear strap. With this trick, you can wear anything from gladiator sandals with straps all over your ankles and calves to retro-inspired heels.
4. Go for Pointed-Toe Shoes
When selecting your footwear, try to wear shoes with pointed toes. The angular look acts like an arrow, carrying the eye from your legs to your feet and past them. The illusion makes your legs seem longer since the eye doesn't stop at any point. Rounded or square toes stop the eye, which could make your legs appear shorter. Find pointed features in nude shoes that don't have ankle straps, and you're sure to elongate your legs. Just ensure you can see the point of your shoes, especially if you want to wear long, loose bottoms.
5. Wear Over-the-Knee Boots
Tall boots carry the eye up most of your leg, giving the illusion that it's longer. For this trick to work most effectively, make sure you don't have skin showing between your boots and whatever you're wearing. Try longer hemlines or tights to create a seamless look from top to bottom. Style over-the-knee boots in these outfits:
- Layer tall boots over tights, skinny jeans or jeggings.
- Wear tall boots under a little black dress.
- Use tall boots with an outfit that features a midi skirt or shorter skirt.
If your hemline doesn't reach the top of the boots, consider wearing a pair that matches your skin tone to maintain the elongating effect.
6. Opt for Dark, Tapered Bottoms
If you plan to wear pants, jeans or leggings, consider a dark wash or darker color. Darker colors create a sleek look that elongates your legs, and a slim or skinny fit carries the eyes down as the bottoms get tighter. Combine these bottoms with any of the shoes that will elongate your figure, and you'll have a better idea of how to dress short legs. You have lots of options when it comes to dark, tapered bottoms, including:
- Dark pants: This style is suitable for formal occasions and work.
- Dark jeans: These can be casual or stylish for a night out.
- Black leggings: Dark leggings are versatile for lounging, running errands or dressing up.
7. Lift Your Waistline With High-Waisted Bottoms
For the look of longer legs, make it seem like they begin higher up on your body. High-waisted bottoms emphasize your natural waist, creating the illusion of much longer legs. You can even create the illusion of a higher waist using belts or clothes that taper in and have accents around your waist. Try elongating clothing like:
- Dark, high-waisted skinny or straight-leg pants.
- A high-waist skirt in a mini or maxi length.
- A jumpsuit belted at your natural waist.
- A mini or maxi dress that tapers around your waist.
8. Tuck the Front of Your Top
To emphasize your lifted waistline and make your legs look longer, tuck the front of your top into your bottoms. This method of styling your clothes is called a French tuck, and it's been a trendy fashion choice recently. Tucking the front of your top into your bottoms helps elongate your legs since it draws the eye up more. Combine this trick with high-waisted bottoms for a dramatic and stylish transformation.
Certain tops tuck better than others. Good options include:
- T-shirts: Make a casual T-shirt look more stylish by using a French tuck. Give your outfit some shape while emphasizing your waist and elongating your legs, all in a simple T-shirt.
- Button downs: A button-down top transforms from business casual to trendy with a simple tuck. Consider only tucking one side of the top for an asymmetrical shirt tuck.
- Blouses: Create a trendy look that's ready for work or a night out when you French tuck a blouse. This trick works best when your blouse is loose on the bottom rather than elastic or fitted.
9. Wear a Longer Hem
For pants, skirts and dresses, try hemlines that sweep the floor, especially when you wear heels. If you have short legs, you may find that many of your clothes already naturally reach the floor, and you can use that to your advantage. Any bottoms or clothes that are maxi or long styles can create the illusion of longer legs, including:
- A jumpsuit: This style elongates your body and gives you a vintage look.
- Long, loose pants: Long and flowing pants are comfortable, trendy and stylish.
- A maxi dress: You can style a maxi dress to be formal or casual.
- A maxi skirt: This is a stylish choice you can easily match to your tastes.
10. Try Shorter Styles
It may seem contradicting to wear short styles after hearing that long hems elongate your legs. But if the weather is right and you're comfortable showing off your legs, try short hemlines. Mini skirts and dresses or shorts that hit mid-thigh or higher will elongate your figure as they let the eye see most of your leg.
If you aren't comfortable showing off your legs, wear tights. Choose sheer tights in a matching nude shade to have coverage while still maintaining the appearance of long legs. Whether you wear tights or not, consider wearing skin-matching nude shoes with the look for an added long-leg illusion.
11. Wear One Color
Wearing one color can make you look taller or elongate your legs, depending on what you wear. Putting on a dress or jumpsuit is a simple way to have one color from head to toe, but you could also match different pieces of your outfit. Of course, you could break up this color with a solid or patterned piece somewhere in the outfit, but try to keep the main parts the same color or pattern. Achieve this elongating style with outfit pairings like the following:
- Match your shoes and bottoms: When you show off your legs, wearing a matching nude color shoe elongates your figure. The same idea works when you match your shoes to your tights or bottoms. Wear fitted bottoms or tights that match up with your shoe or loose bottoms that go past your shoe for the best results. You won't see skin peeking through, which would ruin the illusion.
- Wear matching suit pants and a jacket: If you want something formal or work-ready that elongates your legs, wear a matching suit set. Find a set with either pants or a skirt based on what you prefer to wear. You'll also find these outfits in countless colors and patterns for your professional options.
- Try a matching set: Matching sets are trendy and comfy-casual. Get the look of long legs, even when you're wearing comfortable sweatpants and a sweatshirt that matches.
12. Try Vertical Stripes
You may have heard the fashion myth that horizontal stripes can make your figure look wider. But what isn't a myth is that vertical stripes elongate your figure. That's because vertical stripes direct the eye up and down wherever you wear them. That creates the illusion of longer legs or a taller figure, depending on what you wear with vertical stripes. Try these pieces to incorporate vertical stripes into your wardrobe:
- A jumpsuit for a formal outfit.
- Loose pants for a comfortable and trendy outfit.
- Suit pants and a jacket with vertical stripes for a matching set.
13. Wear Cropped Jackets
If you're layering your look, consider a cropped jacket. This outerwear style will also help lift your waistline or maintain the illusion you create with pieces like high-waisted bottoms. You'll find various cropped jackets to try, making them perfect for almost any type of outfit. Find styles like these in short options:
- Jean jackets are retro and trendy.
- Moto jackets add an edgy flair.
- Teddy jackets are a cozy cropped option.
- Bomber jackets give your outfit personality.
14. Use Asymmetrical Designs
Asymmetrical designs help create the illusion of longer legs, depending on where the asymmetrical details are. This trick works because the highest point of your asymmetrical clothing can look like the point where your leg starts. To try this illusion, consider wearing:
- High-low dresses: From the front, a high-low dress has a shorter hemline to show off more of your legs and make them seem longer. From the back, your hem may sweep to the floor, giving you a clothing item that gives you coverage and combines ways to elongate your legs.
- Dresses with slits: You'll commonly find formal dresses that feature a cut in the skirt to show off a leg. The higher the cut starts, the longer your legs might appear. For a casual twist on this trend, opt for a comfortable maxi dress that combines an elongating, sweeping hemline with a slit that also gives the illusion of longer legs.
- Asymmetrical tops: Combine high-waisted bottoms with a top that has an asymmetrical hemline across the front. That can help lift your waist and elongate your legs more, depending on where the higher point of the hemline is.
Shop Elongating Clothing and More With Perfectly Priscilla
At Perfectly Priscilla, we want you to love your body and what you wear. Whether you dress to accentuate your figure or you want to know how to dress to make your legs look longer, we have pieces that'll suit your wardrobe. Our exclusive styles and sizes give you a boutique shopping experience online. You're sure to discover clothing and accessories that fit your tastes with Perfectly Priscilla.