Belts and the Big Woman

How to Wear a Belt if You’re Curvy

Belts and the big woman. That sounds like a 70’s cop show. The only police who will arrest a curvy woman wearing a  belt is the fashion police.

Okay, it’s a corny opener, but if you’re a curvy or bigger woman, you understand that even though belts can be tricky, the right belt worn in the right way will take your outfit from mumu to whit-whew! (that’s a written whistle in case you were wondering. 😉 ) Here are my best tips for how to wear a belt if you’re a curvy woman.

Also, although I’ve got the belt thing figured out, I’m still figuring out this blogging thing. So if you’re interested in helping a sister out read the end of this post. I’m looking for your opinion!

Can a full figured woman wear a big? YES, you can and should wear a belt.

A woman’s belt is for more than holding up her pants. It’s a fashion accessory and can expand your wardrobe without purchasing anything new. Win! We can belt almost anything; dresses, kimonos, sweaters, tunics, dresses, and blazers to start. You could also belt a jumpsuit, but that will create a disadvantage if you have to scoot to the bathroom in a hurry. 😉

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Best Belt Placement for a Curvy Woman

Tunics, sheaths and swing dresses may look breezy and effortless, especially on the skinny peeps, but belting them can create a slimmer silhouette for the full-figured woman. It will also help create a shape for someone with a straight body type.

I think the best belt placement if you’re belting anything besides pants is to go high on your waist at or near the smallest place on your torso. This means the belt will most likely sit above your navel.

My navel area is rather like a donut right now because of a hernia above it. Cinching in the area above the hernia protrusion creates a nice little gather of fabric to help camouflage the bump while the belt sits at a most flattering curve of my waist. Here’s a perfect example.

If the dress or blouse has a natural break or seam, belt it there.

Note: Some dresses don’t belt well regardless of where the belt is placed or how wide or thin the belt is. This is especially true for us big booty girls, but it also depends on the fabric and the volume of the dress. I will often get a big poof of fabric between the belt and my buns. Don’t be discouraged, simply move on to another dress.

Belts for bigger women  ||  Plus Size Fashion  ||  Full figure fashion advice

Best Belt Width for a Curvy Woman

Okay, here’s where style advice is more opinion that fact…at least that’s my opinion. I’ve read advice that says choose a wide belt if you’re a bigger woman and then I’ve read the exact opposite. I think it has a little to do with the size of your torso too. My mom tells me “we’re short-waisted Paula, we stand tall and sit short”. I think it means that I don’t have a lot of room above my pelvis so wide belts won’t always work on me.

 If you’re like me and Mom, take the middle ground on belt size. I like a belt that’s about an inch wide but I have worn wider belts in certain situations and depending on placement. A smaller width belt would work too but if you’re unsure, snap a photo in your mirror with each belt to determine what looks best on your frame and with your outfit.

Best way for curvy women to wear belts  ||  Belts for full figured women  ||  Full figured fashion

How to Belt Skirts and Tops – High or Low?

I belly is bigger now than it’s ever been. If my boobs get low enough to meet my belly, belting the smallest part of my torso will mean I’m putting a belt around my neck. Chokers are still in, right? 

Seriously though, if midlife is expanding your middle too, you’ll need to wear your skirts higher on your waist. I’ve tried belting them around my natural waist and it’s no bueno.

Seek Out Inspiration

My curvy style hero, Ms. Krisitne from Trendy Curvy, gets the curvy style right! Check out how she belted a poncho.

Curvy women can wear belts || Fashion tips for full figured women
Cardigan (sold out) – similar, similar || FAVORITE T-shirt (wear XL or XXL) || Jeans (wearing 18 plus) || Belt – brown, black (wearing 14/16) || Shoes (sold out) – similar similar

Don’t Pull Your Belt Too Tight

A too tight belt can cause all our soft, wobbly bits to squish out above and below it. I prefer to have ultimate control of how snug my belt is fixed and that’s the reason I stay away from stretch belts. I’ve seen full figure women like Tanesha Awhatsi, wear them successfully but it’s not been my experience. Read her post about belting anything.

You’re a Big Girl Now, Tuck Your Shirt In

There are blouses made to leave out, but bigger women can and should tuck their shirts in sometimes. There’s also the cool and clever half or front tuck and a belt peeking out can complete a look. I’ll link some pretty belts for this purpose.

 But, do you want to know how to get more mileage out of your belt wardrobe?

Big girls can tuck in their shirt too. || Belts for bigger women  ||  Plus Size Fashion  ||  Full Figure Fashion

Customize Your Belts

Unless you’re a straight or apple shape, larger women will almost always have much bigger hips than our waists, even our high hip measurement is larger. And most of us don’t have the budget or storage space for tons of belts. What’s a curvy girl to do?

Buy one of these nifty leather punch tools. Then buy the belt to fit the largest area you’ll be using them, probably your jeans, and add holes to be able to cinch clothes in at the smaller part of your waist. Tah-dah!

If you don’t already wear belts, I hope you’ll get out of your mumu, er… comfort zone and try one. Get the basics of course, black and brown. Definitely add an animal print belt, they’re neutral in my opinion. And then go for some special ones in metallics and bright colors.

If you’re already rocking belts, do you have any style tips and tricks for making them work for your shape?

Be comfy, confident and cute!


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How to wear belts if you're full figured  ||  Full figure fashion  ||  Plus Size fashion

SUPER Important Questions for YOU!

As always thanks for your support of this blog. What other topics would you like to see covered?

I’m thinking of adding more unique, Paula-esque flavor to this corner of the internet by sharing some funny, real-life stories.

I’ve also never shared any of the remodel of My Cedar Palace. Would you like a peek inside? Besides my family, it’s where my true passion lives.


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  1. Gina D from Texas

    I’m always afraid of belts because I feel like they draw “more” attention to my um … curves … which I do my best to hide. I rarely tuck my tops too because of that same reason. But I think I’ll try tucking and belting (that sounds like a dance move 🤣).

    I’d love to hear more of your personal stories and see your palace. And your fashion tips are always helpful.

    Have a blessed day!

    • Paula

      Hey Gina, you’ll be more comfortable with just a front tuck. That way the sides and back are still looser. It also looks casual. Thanks for the go-ahead with more personal blogging.

      Oh, and your “dance move” sounds a lot like “The Bend and Snap” (Legally Blonde). 😂

  2. Mary K.

    Yes, absolutely share personal stories and home/life moments. These set you apart and give your readers insight into your uniqueness!

    • Paula

      Thanks Mary! I’ve been feeling like I need to do more “me”. I’m a small fish in a big pond of fish all doing a lot of the same thing.

  3. /

    You look so Comfy and Kuute. I’m afraid of belts . . .they seem to accentuate my belly.

    • Paula

      Do t be afraid, just experiment- Try belting above your belly with a flowing blouse or dress or…. belt AT your belly BUT, create the illusion that your waist is smaller by wearing something fuller cut in the bottom like a wide leg pants or full skirt.

  4. Jessica Mullins

    Reminds me I need more belts!

  5. Heide V

    Great article on belts, making me rethink my no belt status 😊 Also for the questions, YES and YES for the stories and cedar palace 💃🏻🕺🏼

  6. jodie filogomo

    I’m sending this to Nancy…thanks so much for breaching this subject. I may have to copy this for all three of us!!
    As for your questions….yes, share your decorating and personal stories!!!

    • Paula

      As always, thanks for your support Jodie! I feel like I’m not making progress and fall into the pit of comparison… And it’s not pretty down there.

  7. Gina P from NEPA

    I like Gina D’s name for it, Tuck & Belt (remember the Bend & Snap from Legally Blond), LOL! I’ll have to give it a try! As for your question on what we’d like to see, I’m new to the blog so I’m in to see anything!

    • Paula

      Thank Gina, that’s what I thought about too- Tge Bend & Snap 😁

  8. Kelly Palmer

    This outfit is really cute on you and I think the belt does give a slimming effect. I love your sense of humor and would love to hear more about your family and home! Thanks for sharing yourself with us 🙂

    • Paula

      Thank Kelly! I’m working on those other posts. 😃

  9. /

    I’ve just met your blog but you have humor so I like to read more about you!

  10. Karen Miller

    First, that outfit looks really good on you! Second, I would love to read more about you and your home! But keep the fashion coming, ok?! 😉

  11. Robin OSBORNE

    Yes to the addition of more Paula-esque flavor, and yes to more about your home. Ok….just yes to everything about your blog! Yours is one of my absolute favorites to read. After retiring from teaching in 2016, I have become a bit of a blogaholic. (Hey the first step is admitting I have a problem, right?) Being a 5’2″ full figured apple with a 40 H bust means belts are something I don’t often wear. I am way too self conscious of my front. Sometimes plus size clothes are difficult for me to find because it seems that many designers assume that all fluffy girls carry their weight in the hip and thigh area. Not all of us do, I like to describe myself as deep, not wide.

  12. I felt like I already commented on this…was it on Instagram?? Lol! Anyway, I totally agree on the belt situation. They really are an easy way to add a little something to an outfit. I don’t always wear one though because they sometimes bug me…kinda like wearing a bra. And yes to Paula stories! You are simply too funny to not share more Paula with the world. xo

  13. Sue

    I think personal stories are the heart of a good blogger. Please share.

    • Paula

      Thanks Sue! As a chronic over sharer, this should come easy to me.

  14. Irene

    Your stories and peaks inside your home life make your blog special. I would love more of Paula.

    • Paula

      Thanks Irene! I’m working on it.

  15. Kim Hess

    I think I will dig out the belts at the back of my closet and give them another go. Thanks for the tips!

    • Paula

      Hey Kim, I haven’t talked to you in a while but I always love seeing those beautiful grand baby pics. Ages do darling!

      Hugs – Paula

  16. Great article on belts.Amazing varieties of belts shown in your blog with different colors.Love your article.Thanks for sharing it.Keep up the good work.

  17. Aurora

    What about if you’re a short and curvy? I’m terrified to wear a belt and even more terrified to tuck! I want to hide my belly and my “love” handles, that are not really loveable, if you know what I mean. 🙂

    • Paula

      I hear you Aurora! My middle is what I struggle to accept the most. I think you can still wear belts to define the waist but you don’t have to wear them. However, I think they have their place. For instance. Say you wear a pair of pants and top with a blazer or a long cardigan overtop, the longer outer layer creates a linear line that can help slim and a belt would draw the eye in a create a waist.

      One cautions as a curvy woman is to stay away from super wide belts.

      For more style tips for your body type, you might really love Melissa Murell Styling on YouTube. She has styled tons of different body types and always has great advice.


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