Real Simple answers your questions.

Anya Kroencke

Q. I love the look of belts, but I have a large midsection. Can a belt flatter my body?

A. Definitely.
“A belt is an instant waist creator,” says stylist Ricci DeMartino.

Here’s what to keep in mind: A wide belt that is contoured (or cut on a curve, so that it looks like a smile when laid down) will give an undefined torso a nice shape. “If it’s made of thick elastic, it can even act as a girdle,” says style authority Bridgette Raes. Steer clear of skinny styles. “A wide belt will suck you in more,” says DeMartino.

Keep your overall look monochromatic and sleek by choosing a belt in a shade similar to that of your clothes. Position the belt slightly below the waist, close to the pelvic bone. Anywhere else will call attention to the tummy. Wear the belt over something soft that you can blouse slightly above the buckle. That way, the extra fabric can hide the fullness around your middle.

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