Welcome to Brunette with a Budget.
A style, runway & wellness blog created by Chicago-based fashion journalist Amanda Kaplan.

DEFEATING BODY IMAGE SELF-BULLYING | STOMACH & LEGS

DEFEATING BODY IMAGE SELF-BULLYING | STOMACH & LEGS

Girls are TOUGH.  At let me tell you, they are even more tough on themselves.  In today's media, we see how girls are suffering from eating disorders.  Why?  Because of something that should be the least of our concerns: our bodies.  Working at a boutique, I hear quite frequently women and girls complain about the parts of their bodies that they don't like.  For me, I have never been a huge fan of my legs.  But no matter how much I work out or how healthy I eat, I will never have the skinny "thigh-gap" looking legs.  After struggling for quite sometime to be fully confident with my body shape, I have decided and learned that it isn't about criticizing myself for the way I look, but that I should dress and wear clothes in a way that doesn't necessarily hide my "imperfections", but focuses on complimenting the parts of my body that I am not a huge fan of.

I think that the most important step to starting to love your body is to dress in way that not only flatters but compliments yourself while remaining comfortable.  Today, I am going to touch on a couple area's of a woman's body that most girls do not like. 

STOMACH

Whether you were gifted or not with a flat stomach and perfectly defined abs, many woman struggle with the "muffin top".  Instead of wearing old tee shirts that hang to your knees in order to avoid an awkward lump in your mid-section, there are 2 different types of tops/dresses that instead of looking like a potato sack, actually compliment your figure.

1) Tee-shirt dresses (worn as a tee shirt): Being someone who is tall, I have always been drawn to tee-shirt dresses.  Not for their length (because trust me, they barely cover my booty), but for the way that they flow around you stomach and allow your body to look slim.  I have found, that the best kinds of tee shirt dresses are the ones that aren't fitted, but the ones that are meant to be flowy and somewhat oversized.  After much scoping the internet and purchasing one for myself, I have found that the best place to purchase these kinds of tops are from Brandy Melville

2) Cami dress:  I am a lover of flowy clothing.  But sometimes, flowy clothing falls in a way that actually unflattering and causes your midsection to look worse than it actually is.  Thankfully, about a year ago, I discovered the cami dress when searching through the racks at Forever 21.  The way that a cami dress differs from just your typical sun-dress is that it sintches at 3 spots: right below your chest, by your ribcage, and by your belly button.  Because this dress is carefully tapered in these spots, it allows your entire torso to appear slimmer without hugging too closely to your body.  Not only are these dresses extremely flattering, but they're incredibly comfortable.

LEGS

Unfortunately, myself included, not everyone can be blessed with skinny legs and a thigh gap.  As much as we all wish that our insides of our thighs wouldn't be touching, that is not always the case for everyone.  Since legs are a harder part of our body to hide with baggy clothing (because who likes saggy pants? not me!), there are 3 different types of bottoms that will do the trick to give the appearance of skinnier legs.

1) Trousers:  Feel like sweatpants, look a whole lot classier.  Trouser pants, since last year, have been one of my favorite pieces to wear.  I'm obsessed with the loose fit on the upper half of my leg and the tapered fit around my ankles.  Not only are they flattering to the eye, but they also make the wearer feel a lot more comfortable because instead of hugging their "imperfections", they loosely fit around them without making you look like a gangster.  After shopping around for a little, I have found 2 places that have cute trousers: Forever 21 and H & M.  

2) Side detailed leggings:  While classic cotton leggings may be comfortable and easy to wear, they are actually extremely unflattering on your legs unless you:

a) wear the right top

and/or

b) purchase the right style

The best type of leggings to by are ones with detailing either on the sides of the pants or in the middle of the thigh.  In my personal experience, leggings with detailing on the side (contrasting color, print, ect...) draw attention to the center of your thigh, taking away from the wideness of your legs.  In addition, I have a pair of leather detailed leggings that have a section of my mid-thigh blocked off with leather.  This type of detailing allows your legs to have the appearance of being very slim. My favorite place to buy leggings is Forever 21. They have great styles for low prices!  You can't beat that!

3) Cotton skirts: The third favorite clothing item that I swear by for hiding that terrible upper thigh fat are skirts.  You can layer them over tights, leggings, or just wear them alone!  The best part is, most cotton circle-style skirts are tailored so they fall mid-thigh, hiding your upper thigh, but hitting in a place that makes your lower thigh look slimmer.  After searching stores and website, I have found that my favorite place to buy these skirts are Brandy Melville.  Though they are a little more pricey than a Forever 21 skirt would be, they fit great and are extremely comfortable.  (side not, tall chicas should always buy the HEATHER style of the Brandy Melville skirts, they run a little longer so that they cover even us tall girls' butts!). 

So regardless if you're unhappy with your body or striving to make a difference in the way you look, there is no need for body type self-bullying.  Fashion and styling yourself in ways that flatter your lovely shape is a non-harmful and beneficial way to boost your self-esteem and make self-bullying disappear completely!

** Do you have other body areas that you want me to cover?  Comment below so I can do a part 2 of, "Defeating Body Image Self-Bullying"!! **

SKETCHES | NEW & IMPROVED

SKETCHES | NEW & IMPROVED

"WHY DON'T YOU DRESS LIKE EVERYONE ELSE" | AN OUTFIT OF THE DAY

"WHY DON'T YOU DRESS LIKE EVERYONE ELSE" | AN OUTFIT OF THE DAY