Fashion Advice for Tall Women

by Angel

Fashion advice for the tall women who want to accentuate their height and those that want to detract from it.

Should Tall Women Play it Up or Play it Down?

When looking around a typical store there are all kinds of clothing options for Plus Size and Petite women. Where are the Tall Woman sections of the store? You won't find many unless you are in a store specifically for Tall Women and there are not too many of them. The average woman is 5'4” tall. Most clothes are made to fit the average woman. Finding clothes that fit you correctly can be a task.

If you are like me you have to try on everything before you purchase it. I am 5 ft. 9 inches and I have a hard time finding clothes that fit me like they are supposed to. Many of my pants end up being way to short after washing them a couple of times and shirt sleeve lengths start climbing up my arm. They start off just on the edge of being too short to start with. Then after washing it shrinks them to being too short. When I find a good fit that lasts through a few washes I look so much better and feel better when wearing it.

Some of us feel more comfortable showing off our height while some of us prefer to tone it down a little bit. There are options in clothing for both. It is nothing wrong with being tall. Feel good about it and wear it well with some of these tips. However, there may be times when you want to take away from it and there are ways to dress for that as well.

Vertical Stripes Make You Look Taller
Vertical Stripes Make You Look Taller

Tall Women Who Want to Play it Up

Women that are tall and like showing off their height can wear many different styles that will play it up.

  • Solid colors from head to toe is a good way to show off your height. Wearing a solid color from head to toe creates an elongated look and has no breaking point. A solid colored dress is a good example of how you can look tall or taller. Stay with the same colored belt if you want to look tall. Use a different colored belt if you want to create a breaking point which will detract from your height. It won't take away much with the solid color dress but it will break it up enough to move the eye to your belt instead of a continuous color.
  • Vertical stripes will give the illusion of looking taller.
  • Long skirts and long dresses will make you look tall or taller.
  • High heels will obviously add to your height with a little boost of confidence as well.
  • Long scarves and long necklaces will give you a longer look.
  • Skinny jeans will make your legs super long. The darker the jeans the longer your legs will look. Lighter colors will make you look shorter.

Tall Women Who Want to Play it Down

For those of you that want to play down your height there are ways to do that as well.


  • Horizontal lines tend to break up a look and play down your height. Look at the same model in both a solid colored blue sweater and then in a blue striped sweater. The stripes detract from her long torso area.
  • Wide belts will take away from your height if in a different color than your outfit. Not everyone can wear belts. Tall women have that advantage.
  • Prints in general will take away from your height. Anything that breaks up a line of continuing color will work.
  • Pants with cuffs tend to make you look shorter.
  • Flat shoes will keep from adding any height.
  • Wearing separates will break up your look too. Especially if done with the top being a different color than the pants.

The Fashion 411 For Tall Women

Wear it Well and Be Confident

There are a lot of things that tall women can wear that shorter women cannot. Belts would be one that look better on a taller woman. Stripes is another. Especially horizontal stripes.

High wasted style clothes make a tall person look more proportional. It provides more of an hour glass look for you. Wide legged pants will also make things look more in proportion.

When something does not fit properly it can make you wish you were shorter. Nothing is worse than a pair of high water pants. Tall women usually need a 34”-36” inseam. It is hard to find at times. When you do it feels so good to sport those pants around.

Regardless of what you wear, make sure it fits properly. This will give you the confidence you need to be happy with your height.

Updated: 02/07/2012, Angel
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Angel on 02/08/2012

Jimmie - as always thanks for reading and commenting. Yes.. length is a big problem with me too. I get so mad when my pants are short on me after one wash. I think I only wash in cold but need to pay more attention to that...might be why my pants shrink! I like being tall too.

Angel on 02/08/2012

SPB - I do like being tall. I never had a problem with. It is kind of like Brenda said below... there is more area to spread the fat around...LOL.

SPB on 02/08/2012

Oh to be 5'9"... I would love that. I went from being the tallest girl in the class and then stopped growing. I'm that average height now :( and would love to be tall!

Jimmie on 02/08/2012

I'm only 5'8", but I do find that length is an issue. I absolutely cannot wash my clothes in warm water. It makes them shrink too much. I love being tall, and although I never wear heels, I would never play it down.

Angel on 02/08/2012

You are so right Brenda.. I feel like I am huge but everyone tells me that I can carry it because I am so tall.. no sure I agree 100% .. I wear more patterns on top and solid on bottom for some designs.. Everyone calls me Big Girl so I guess I need to just accept it! I even created my new website with the title of Big Girl. Big Girl's Curvy Beauty and Fashion Spot! Ha... work it.

BrendaReeves on 02/08/2012

When I was a kid and taller than even the boys in my class, I hated being tall. My mother didn't help by insisting short is better. I got over that as an adult. Thank God I'm not 5' 2" like I always longed for. Tall women have more area to spread the fat. lol Love your suggestions. I like to wear solid colors from head to toe.

Angel on 02/07/2012

Katie - I think you could pull of the orange dress only because it has the stripes and darker brown color going through it. If it was solid I would say no. It is beautiful. I love long dresses like in the summer too. My problem is that I am tall and bigger... wish I was slim. I am a Big Girl! But even the 12-14 in the Plus size is often too short for me...

katiem2 on 02/07/2012

I just have to add I love Love LOVE the long flowing dress in the light fabric, I wear them all the time in the summer. These dresses make me feel so good when I wear them, that color, do you think I could pull that off, love the orange. You know what's really hard is buying off the rack when you 5'10' thin with long legs and arms there is no small sizes long enough...

katiem2 on 02/07/2012

This tall woman loves your fashion sense and ideas for us tall girls. I love being tall, heels, long short dresses or skirts, it all works for me! Versatility!

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