Being overweight can cause you to feel self-conscious about the way you look and are perceived by others. According to The Harvard Medical School Health Publications, feeling rejected and unattractive due to weight issues can lead you to gain more weight in response to emotional strain. If you are petite and overweight, there are ways to dress that can make you look taller and slimmer, which will have a positive effect on your psychological health and self image.

Step 1

Make an inventory of all the clothes in your closet and first get rid of anything that you haven’t worn for more than 5 months. Also, get rid of clothes that are too loose and can make you seem bigger than you are. No matter what your weight is, loose clothes will always make you seem at least one size bigger.

Step 2

Plan a day to go shopping for clothes and bring a friend that can be honest and who can help you choose what is most flattering for your skin color, personality and body type.

Step 3

Favor clothes with horizontal stripes. Contrary to popular belief, studies done by Dr. Peter Thompson of the University of York show that vertical stripes make a person appear fatter than horizontal stripes. Dr. Thompson notes that horizontal stripes make the body seem taller.

Step 4

Choose dark colored clothes, especially black, which hide any details you are not comfortable with and also make your body look slimmer. Avoid white at all costs as it will make you look much wider than you really are.

Step 5

Pick fabrics that are comfortable, stretchy and opaque, such as cotton. Shiny fabrics tend to show off curves more and stand out. Opaque fabrics blend in and make your body look tighter.

Step 6

Buy one-piece items such as dresses as well as skirts and pants that button up above your hips. Pants and skirts that end at the hips will accentuate the width of your hips and make your legs look shorter than those that button at the waist.

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