10 Tips to Visually Slim the Overweight Man

by | Mar 11, 2021 | Clothes for Overweight Men, Dress for Success, Image consulting for Men, J Hilburn

It’s Rare to See a Well Dressed Man who is Significantly Overweight – Why is That!?

When the stomach outpaces the chest and rear, fit issues occur. But that doesn’t mean give up and throw in the towel.  I love seeing a well dressed man of ANY size or shape, and so here I share my top 10 tips to visually slim and remain powerful and elegant.

  1. Monochromatic dressing (all one color dressing such as a suit, or a sweater same color as your pants) is VERY slimming.  The eye just bounces from top to bottom without getting stuck at a giant line of demarcation between your light shirt and your dark pants. (or visa versa – see photo)

2. You likely wear your pants under your tummy which requires a lower rise trousers.  The worst thing a young man can do is buy off the rack “big and tall” clothes with a giant long trouser rise just to get it to fit in the waist.  Grandpa pants.  (see photo)

3. White advances, dark recedes.  Darkers colors will appear more slimming.

4. Use color to your advantage – the eye travels to a pop of color, maybe a pocket square in your jacket, jaunty bow tie or a contrast sweater collar?

5. Understand the proportional issue you have; the larger the tummy visually the smaller the legs appear.  Wearing the modern skinny jeans or slim cut suit pants will accent this.  Keep some width proportionally to your silhouette from top to bottom.

6. Buying a shirt big enough for your neck and or belly can result in giant oversized too long arms.   (see photo).  Even if you only paid $30 bucks at JC Penney for the shirt you MUST invest another $30 to $40 get the sleeves slimmed and shortened by a tailor.  Or buy custom from me.  🙂

7. Worse (only slightly) than swimming in “too big”, is fighting the constriction of “too small.”  Shirts that gape at the bottom buttons, trouser pockets that pop open on the sides from pulling and more.  It’s always better to buy big, and then have the really big parts tailored down.  And have your pants hemmed please – when you create a nice crisp vertical line the eye travels well up and down, instead of getting stuck in a puddle of fabric at the shoes. (see photo).

8. Be aware of the proportion of your height.  Often a man will wear a button-up shirt “out” over his pants to camouflage the stomach area, but the tails of the shirt are way too long, making his torso seem WAY bigger and longer than his smaller, shorter, lower half.  You don’t want the length of your shirt to be longer than the visual midpoint of your body.  If you want help with this schedule a free zoom call with me.

9. Some men have big chests and tummy’s like a rock (aka subcutaneous fat) and some are more squishy. If you tend to the later variety you likely carry some weight in your breast area.  This is easily solved with a compression undershirt, which I do recommend to clients.

10. Wear the correct shirt collar for your face shape.  Some men hold weight in the face and throat, and in this case you want a shirt collar that harmonizes with the area, a broad spread or cutaway collar that gives balance to the width of the neck.  This client photo with a narrow point collar (severely cropped to protect the innocent!) is a “what not to do” because the narrowness of the collar accentuates the broadness of the throat.



Overweight should not come part and parcel with poor fit.  Let me help you to combine the best of ALL of you and the best of  the apparel resources I know are available to you, including the J.Hilburn Extended Fit suiting program, with the best larger men fit templates in the industry.

Ann Lindsay is Style of Success and Suited for Love 

I work to make you look effortlessly confident.

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