The Right Hemline: tips to flatter your silhouette and achieve a stylish look

When picking out your perfectly fitted jeans or pants, the choice of the appropriate length is an essential feature, as wearing trousers that are not the right length for your figure can weight down your figure – and style.

If the hem is at the right height, your legs will look longer and leaner, whereas improperly hemmed trousers not only enlarge your whole figure, they also are the opposite of chic.

Yet, it is also true that every season, there are new, different dictates for hems and lengths, which can make the choice quite tricky.

To make the most appropriate choice, always consider that, as far as hems are concerned, trends are just the last thing to consider. If you look slim and chic with your fitted trousers hemmed at the ankle, it’s nonsense to wear cropped jeans just because they happen to be in fashion. Though this may not coincide with the current trend, this is not your concern: your goal should not be to achieve an up-to-the-minute-but-totally-unflattering look, but a style that will always look trendy, stylish, and chic while at the same time enhancing your silhouette.


That said, choosing the most suitable length for your trousers is especially important in winter, as your lower leg is the only part of your figure that remains in plain sight – therefore, it’s essential to style it in an impeccable way.

Here are some useful tips for a faultless outcome:

  • The first thing to keep in mind is that properly hemming your pants (or having them hemmed by a tailor) is always a must. Unhemmed jeans (that from time to time happen to be in fashion) wrap themselves around your lower leg and add unpleasant volume to your ankle and calf, thus making you appear anything but polished.


  • For straight and skinny pants, the ideal length is usually at the ankle. This way, you can pair them with any kind of shoes – flats, heels, sneakers (as you can see in the picture below).


  • If you have a lovely ankle (which does not necessarily mean incredibly thin), you can also hem your trousers slightly higher than your ankle. Though, if you don’t have long, lean legs, avoid pairing shorter hems with high sneakers, as this ensemble visually divides your legs, making them appear shorter. Plus, as high sneakers hide the ankle itself (that is, the thinner part of your legs), this pairing can make your legs look shorter, and is only suitable for those who would like to look fuller.


  • A lovely alternative to high sneakers (that are usually quite tricky if you are not tall and thin) are lace-up boots (as in the picture below). When paired with straight pants or with skinny jeans, this kind of shoe visually creates a long, straight line, thus elongating your lower half and making your figure look more proportional.


  • When wearing wide pants, the ideal length depends on the shoe you are wearing. With high heels, the hem should gaze the floor, so as to completely hide the heel and give the impression of longer legs. With flats, hemming your pants at the ankle is usually your best bet, so as to leave some skin in plain sight (which is always slimming). If you have thin ankles, another option is hemming your wide trousers a couple of inches above the ankle (as in the picture below).


Moreover, if you want a flawless and enhancing result, it’s better to avoid cuffed jeans (unless the cuff is a tailored one): a cuff visually divides the figure, shortening your legs.

This is especially true with denim fabrics that are darker on one side, and lighter on the other. Therefore, if you love cuffed jeans, it’s essential to pick out a fabric whose color is the same inside and outside, as in the picture below on the right.


And never, ever, wear short, flared pants (unless you are six feet tall), as this will make even thin legs look shorter and fuller.

In one of the next posts, we will see in detail how to make use of flared pants to achieve a chic and visually thinner figure.

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