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STYLE ADVICE

HOW TO DRESS: SKINNY DUDES

By Matt Glazebrook, 20 January 2017

If your potential sartorial pitfalls include bursting out of your work shirt, Bruce Banner-style, or if your most pressing problem is not being able to reach the top shelf of your wardrobe, we've already lent a hand. Now it's the turn of those of us whose list of daily style challenges feature figuring out how to hammer an extra hole into our belt in order to keep our trousers from falling down.

how to dress: skinny dudes

Picture: WENN

1. Don't hide in oversized

Unless your surname is Dogg (first name: Snoop), there's little chance that your slim frame will look great in a fully baggy ensemble. Trying to disguise your inherent slightness might seem appealing, but will usually leave your gear looking shapeless and sack-like. A much better bet is to embrace your shape, and make the most of your striking lines and sharp angles. Plenty of people struggle with the skinny-jeaned rocker look: you don't, so have some fun with it.

how to dress: skinny dudes

Picture: Rex

2. But don't go too skinny either

On the other hand, you don't want to look like Ewan McGregor in Trainspotting. Just because you can (just about) fit into that child's size T-shirt, doesn't mean you necessarily should. Especially not if you've also recently risked life, limb and future fatherhood zipping yourself into a pair of equally undersized trousers. An outfit that works on an indie band frontman won't necessarily feel as appropriate on a Saturday afternoon trip to the shops. Leave a little breathing room, yeah?

how to dress: skinny dudes

Picture: Xposure

3. Mix up the widths

For a flattering, fashion-forward alternative to all-skinny, all the time, try pairing tight trousers with an oversized shirt, sweat or tee (or even a regular-fit top with the sleeves rolled). The resulting baggy/slimline silhouette is both on trend and a bit more interesting to look at than standard rocker chic.

how to dress: skinny dudes

Picture: Rex

4. Suit slimly

One of the most challenging sartorial scenarios for a slender chap is a formal occasion. While not quite filling out your outfit might get a pass elsewhere, turning up to a wedding or job interview with sloping shoulders, a shapeless middle section, and sagging smart trousers will just leave you looking like you're an awkward teenager who's borrowed his dad's suit. Happily, there are a range of ace-fitting slim and skinny two-pieces available these days, so even if you aren't ready to shell out for a personally tailored number, you can still turn up at a posh do looking slim, sharp and totally on top of your style game.

how to dress: skinny dudes

Picture: Getty

5. Use colours to boost the bits that need boosting

If you do want to enhance certain aspects of a slender physique, there's a hack that women have known about for years: using patterns and colours to bolster or diminish various body bits, optical-illusion style. Worried your legs look a little stick-like? Try a light denim paired with a darker top: the contrast will make your pins seem a bit fuller. If it's your chest width that concerns you, keep the legs looking slim in dark, plain trousers and highlight the difference with a patterned or printed top (horizontal stripes are the girth-boosting cliche, but any eye-catching print or pattern will do the trick).

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