What is your body type and shape? Do you really even know what that means?
These buzz words are things that you hear a lot about in the beauty and fashion world, but the average person doesn’t really think about their body shape all that much. There are some shape categories that we all fall into based on the width of our hips, the size of our chests, and where we carry our weight, but most of us are totally unfamiliar with them.
Not to worry! It’s important to note that your body shape does not define your beauty. Even in body positivity spheres, specific body shapes seem to be glamorized, whereas others are hidden away. But the reality is that all bodies are good bodies!
Even so, knowing your body shape can help you when you are looking for clothing online, figuring out fitness routines, and more. So, let’s find out what body type and shape you are and celebrate your beauty!
Types of Body Shapes
Let’s start with body shapes. The most common (but certainly not the only) body types fall into one of four categories:
- Triangle Or “Pear”
- Inverted Triangle Or “Apple”
Like we said, there is a TON of variation within these four types, and sometimes, people will fall into multiple categories. For example, if your weight fluctuates, you may be an hourglass shape, but if you lose weight in your chest, you become an apple shape. In fact, there is so much variation that we’ve even added some categories over the years.
Rectangular Shape: Also known as a straight or “banana” body, this is a common shape when people are younger or before they have babies. People with this shape will have waist measurements that are about the same size as their hips and busts. Their shoulders and hips are about the same width as well.
Triangle or Pear Shapes: An extremely popular shape, particularly within the body positivity community, is the pear shape. This is when you have narrow shoulders and a smaller bustline, but your hips and butt are bigger. These people have a defined waist and may have slimmer arms. Pears tend to have a gentle slope to the hips.
Spoon Shaped: This is a variation on the pear shape, but there is a slight difference. The spoon shape means that your hips jut out quite a bit from your body, but you still have a smaller chest. Spoons are more likely to have thicker thighs and maybe thicker arms.
Hourglass Shape: The traditional “vixen” body shape is the hourglass body type. If you are a true hourglass, you have hips and a bustline that are nearly equal in size with a smaller, defined waist. You have legs and arms that are generally proportionate to the rest of your body. Often, hourglass shapes will have rounded shoulders and a well-defined butt. This shape is lucky because a lot of the clothes on store racks are designed with this body in mind, even though most people don’t fit into this category.
Top Hourglass: A slight variation of the hourglass shape, this is when your top half is a little bit larger than your bottom, but you still have that shape. You may prefer to wear V-cut shirts or those that show off your chest. Because if you’ve got it, why not flaunt it?
Bottom Hourglass: Conversely, a bottom hourglass is when you have that same shape, but your hips are slightly larger than your bust. Here, you like to wear form-fitting clothes that show off that booty!
Apple or Inverted Triangle: Another common body shape, this one is for people who have shoulders and a bustline that are larger than their hips and legs. You might like to show off your legs if you fall into this group.
Round or Oval Shaped: If you have a bust that is bigger than the rest of your body, and you have a bit of a belly, then you are considered a round or oval shape. You usually have hips that are narrower and thinner legs as well if you fall into this category.
Diamond Shape: People who have a diamond shape have hips and a waistline that is broad, but their chest and shoulders are thinner, as are their legs. They may carry some weight in their upper thighs, but their calves are thin.
- Athletic: If you have a body that is muscular, you may have what people call an “athletic” body type. Anybody can be athletic, so this is a bit of an imperfect category. Still, those who fall into this grouping may have smaller butts and breasts and their shoulders and hips tend to be the same size.
Forget the Old Rules About Body Shape
Physically, you cannot change your shape all that easily. So, why worry about it?
Certainly, there are workouts that allow you to build muscle in one area of your body, but those can take a long time to work. You can create illusions with the clothing that you wear as well.
But overall, it’s best to know your body shape, and embrace it! While you can always choose to work out, diet a little, and shed some pounds, body shape rarely has to do with weight and is more just about how you were built!
Why Did My Body Change Its Shape?
It happens! There are many reasons why your body may have changed shape. Aging impacts shape and size over time. As we get older, we tend to get more body fat and that can accumulate in different areas causing our overall shape to morph a bit.
Injuries, surgeries, pregnancy, and more can all change your body shape. You can also slightly change your body shape -- if you start working out more, you may change your shape. Maybe you eat more, that can change your shape as well. Menopause changes our shape, too! The shape is often the same as the one you have now, it just may be a bit more or less exaggerated.
Want to know how your body will change? Look to your family members -- much of our body shape is determined by our genetics, and they are really hard to fight against. Unless you opt for a different lifestyle or plastic surgery, you will most likely look like other members of your family at some point.
How to Appreciate Your Body More
We need to show our bodies the love! Your body does amazing things on a daily basis, and even if there are parts that you don’t love, you should appreciate it every single day. Remember that someone somewhere would give up quite a bit to have a healthy body like yours.
So, how can you focus on appreciating your body and not shaming it? We’re here to share a few tips:
Don’t Buy Into Media Trends: A few years ago, everyone needed to be super skinny and have impossibly large, perky breasts. Now butts are having their moment. Lips are supposed to be large as well. Before that, heroin chic told us we couldn’t have any curves. Who knows what will be next? You cannot possibly keep up with these trends unless you have an unlimited bank account and a really good plastic surgeon. So, don’t even try! Just be beautifully YOU!
Diversify Your Media: Don’t just take in media that features one body type. There are so many great companies that highlight different kinds of bodies -- think Savage x Fenty, American Eagle, and Nike. Listen to musical artists who have different types of bodies, follow influencers from all over the size spectrum, and take note when a brand doesn’t highlight different types of bodies.
You Can Appreciate Your Body and Still Work To Make Changes: Too often, we think that anyone who is trying to change their bodies must automatically hate themselves. That’s totally not true! Some people are looking for a new challenge, want to feel better, or just enjoy the many benefits of exercise. You can be thankful for the body you have but still want to change it, perfect it, or just tone it. It’s your body and your masterpiece!
Take Care of Your Skin: Never forget your beautiful skin. Your skin holds your body together and serves as a portal to the rest of you. Remember that whatever you put on your skin will travel through your system, so you want to use high-quality products that have clean ingredients meant to nourish your bawdy! Take the time to learn about your skin type, and take care of it as best you can.
- Take Care of Your Favorite Parts: Your beautiful body deserves love and TLC, and you can get that TLC right at home! Give your behind a little extra love by indulging in a clay butt mask, moisturizing it properly, and getting some of that dry skin off. Take some time to massage and moisturize your chest after a long day. If you love your legs, give them a good exfoliating and lotioning and show those babies off in some short shorts. Simply put, love the body you’re in!
Conclusion – Love and Appreciate Your Body Shape
No matter what shape your body is now or what it may become in the future, your body is absolutely gorgeous just the way it is. There is absolutely no such thing as an ideal body, no matter what the media tries to tell you.
What matters is that your body is healthy and supports you in all that you want to do. If you want to change something on your body for you, then go for it! Your body is yours to love! However, don’t change anything about your body just to fit an image you see on Instagram.
It’s your life and your body, so do it your way!