The Best Coats For An Hourglass Body Shape – 2024 Coat Guide

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Updated:

February 15, 2024

Finding a coat that fits and flatters you when you have an hourglass figure, can be a real struggle.

Most coats aren’t typically designed to cater to a large bust and a defined waist, so you end up compromising on fit and look.

  • You either go up a size to accommodate for your bust, but then you end up feeling frumpy, top-heavy, and larger than you are because the coat hides your shape and adds bulk.
  • Or, you take your usual size and put up with the coat pulling across the bust area when you wear it done up.

That’s not OK. You should not, and do not, have to settle for poorly fitting coats that make you feel crap.

I’m a Personal Stylist, and for the past 18 years I’ve worked with hundreds of hourglass women from a size 0 to a size 20+.  

I understand the frustrations you’re experiencing when looking for coats for your larger bust.

I know which coat styles will fit you best.

And I know where to shop for them them...

Want to know how to find a coat that fits your full bust and waist…without going up a size?

Look for a coat that has a V-neckline like this, or that has long lapels like this coat does. This will give you some room across the chest, and the v shape will help to narrow the appearance of your bust, whilst drawing the eye down to your defined waist. For extra waist-defining elements, choose an A-line coat with a v-neckline like this - it will fit you well, and highlight your beautiful curves.

Want to know which style of winter coat will enhance your femininity, rather than hiding every curve?

The best option is a wrap-style coat like this. You’ll be able to wrap it as tight (or loose) as you need to fit your bust, and you can use the belt to cinch in your waist - it’s the most effective way to showcase your feminine curves in a coat.

Or, maybe you want to know what the best style of autumn coats are for an hourglass silhouette?

My go-to’s are: Princess style coats like this, or Crombie style coats that have a long lapel and a single button that fastens under the bust.

Whatever you want to know about choosing a coat for your gorgeous, curvy, hourglass body type, this post has the answer (and if it doesn't, please send me your question here!). 

Scroll down to see my tried and tested tips on choosing coats for an hourglass shape, and make 2023 the year when you look forward to putting on your coat! 

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase a product via these links I will earn a small commission. This does NOT make the price higher for you, and I NEVER link to products that I wouldn’t recommend to my clients, or purchase myself. 

Want a quick answer?

these are 3 best coats for an hourglass shape in 2023 

The Oscar nipped waist coat from Reformation

oscar nipped waist coat

Reformation

This is a  modern take on the Princess style coat and it is PERFECT for an hourglass this season. As the name says, it will nip you in at the waist to show off your curves, and the open neckline will fit your bust well.

 compact belted coat

Karen Millen

Coats with a little stretch are a great choice for an hourglass shape, as it helps them to countour your curves. This coat has a zipper closure that you can open to the perfect length, and it's belted which will prevent the coat hiding your shape.

swirl maxi puffer

ASOS DESIGN

A wrap coat is always a great option for an hourglass body-shape.  You can wrap it as tight as you need to get a good fit, and the belt will cinch you in at the waist. Puffer coats are tricky to find in a good fit, so this one is a real gem!

what is an houglass shape?

Before you scroll down, it’s worth checking that you have an hourglass shape. These tips and recommendations are specifically for women who have an hourglass-shaped body, so if your body shape is different, you will probably find that my information doesn’t work for you, and doesn’t solve your frustrations.

Illustrations of different types of hourglass body shapes
The classic characteristics of an hourglass body shape are:
  • You typically wear the same dress size on the top half as you do on the bottom half (although, as I mentioned earlier, you may sometimes go up a size on the top, to give you the room you need across the bust).
  • You have a large bust
  • Your waistline is very well defined - whether you’re a size 2 or plus-sized
  • You’ll have great legs
  • Your hips and shoulders are almost the same width, which gives you a well balanced silhouette
  • Your torso may be a little shorter than your legs (which will make you feel even more top-heavy)

Some of those characteristics are shared by the other body shapes (namely, apple body shapes and pear shapes) so it’s highly likely that you recognize some of them, but not all of them.

This is perfectly normal.  In fact, I expect it.  Few women slot neatly into one body shape category. 

Your body shape is probably a combination of two body-shapes, but knowing what your primary body shape is (the one that you align with the most), is a great place to start when you’re leaning which clothes will work best for you. 

As you become more familiar with your shape, and you better understand your unique characteristics and which clothing styles fit you best, how you define your body-shape becomes less important. 

want to get a better understanding of your body shape?

Here are 4 resources that will help you:

  • I created a FREE body-shape quiz here, that will help you get clearer on what your primary body shape might be.
  • This blog post shares some of the reasons why you might be struggling to identify your shape, and 3 exercises that might help you.
  • This blog post, will  give you an overview of the 4 primary body types, and shares a few things you can do to uncover what your body shape is.
  • For just $27 you can purchase a Body Shape Analysis from me, and I'll tell you exactly what your body shape is!

5 things to look for in a coat, if you have an hourglass shape.

I’ve shared my favorite coats for hourglass women further down this post, but before you take a look, I want to share a few of the elements you might want to look for when you’re choosing the right coat for your hourglass frame. 

A pink single breasted coat for an hourglass shaped women, hanging on a rail

1

choose elements that fit and flatter a large bust

Low necklines are a firm favorite of mine. V necklines like this coat are the best, as the open neckline allows a little extra room for a large bust, but if you prefer to show a little less cleavage a scoop neckline is also great.

2

look for elements that define a waistline

The best elements for defining a waist are waist ties, belts, and structured banding that wraps around the waist.

3

Keep an eye out for coats with structure & shaping

A little structure and shaping is a great design element to include in your coat choice, especially if it's in a fabric that has a little stretch. It will help to showcase your curves and will prevent the coat from swamping you and your shape. 

4

look for design features that draw the eye to your waist

This is a great tip if you're wearing a bulky or padded winter coat that doesn't have a lot of shape. elements such as banding, chevron prints, and color blocking will draw the eye to your waistline to show that you have some shape under all that coat.

V necklines are another great design feature for this - they are literally an arrow pointing down to your waist!

5

choose elements that narrow your bust

If you feel self conscious about your bust, there are some elements that will help to narrow your chest a little.  The best one is a V-neckline - It draws the eye in from your shoulders, and down you torso in a vertical line to narrow your chest and draw attention to your waist.

Coats that wrap will also narrow your bustline.

18 tips for choosing the perfect coat for an hourglass figure

The biggest frustration my clients share with me when there're trying to find a winter coat, is that most coats are too tight across their bust, or are too shapeless and boxy, that they end up looking larger than they are.   If you can relate, I have 18 tried and tested tips that will help you find a coat you enjoy wearing.

BUT - before you even begin to look for a winter coat that works for your hourglass shape, do this:

Make sure you’re wearing the right bra size.

If you’re not, your bust could be looking larger than it is; and it’s probably sitting lower than it should, too.  Both of which will make it even harder for you to find a coat that fits you.

When you wear the correct bra size (and the correct bra style, because the bra shape matters, too!) you’ll find you have a more defined waistline, your bust may look a little smaller, and your chest will be more lifted.

And this will give you a better chance of finding a coat that fits you well. If you want more information about choosing the right bra size, I have a pretty in-depth article right here

1

choose v-neckline.

V necklines are a great choice because they draw the eye in to narrow your bust, and they draw the eye down to highlight your waist.

2

opt for a single-breasted coat.

A double-breasted coat has two rows of buttons that run down the middle of the coat and over the bust, adding bulk and fuss where you might not want it…that’s also two sets of buttons that will likely pull and gape across your boobs.

A far better option is to choose a coat that is single-breasted, it's less bulky and helps to draw a vertical line down your frame to narrow your bust.  And if it buttons below the bust- even better.

3

choose a coat that has structure and shape.

Coats with structure at the waist are brilliant at highlighting your gorgeous waist, and a belted coat is even better as you can cinch it in and show off your waist.  Look for fabrics that have a little stretch so they contour your silhouette.

4

Choose a coat that buttons below your bust.

A coat that buttons below your bust will fit better, will pull less across the chest, and will cinch you in a little under the bust and across the middle to highlight your curves. 

5

Choose simple, fuss free styles.

Choose simple, fuss-free coats that are clear of bulky details like pockets and zippers. Not only will these elements add too much bulk across the chest, but they will draw attention to your bust.

6

long lapels look great on an hourglass shape.

Coats that have a long lapel are are great way to narrow your bustline and draw attention away from your chest, and down to your small waist.

An hourglass shaped women wearing a flattering coat

7

Choose a wrap coat.

A wrap-style coat is a great option if you have an hourglass body shape and a large bust (as are wrap tops!).

You can wrap the coat around you to hug your curves; and you can belt the waist tightly enough to define your waist.

The diagonal line of the wrap will also help to break up the line across your bust, making it appear smaller. It's the best coat style for highlighting your best features.

8

opt for a belted coat.

Belted coats are one of my favorite coat styles for an hourglass body shape. A belted waist prevents an oversized coat from swapping you and hiding your curves. If you have to go up a size to accommodate your boobs, do so in a coat that belts.

An hourglass shaped women wearing a flattering winter coat

9

Look for coats that flare out from the waist.

A-line coats and princess cut coats are great options for an hourglass shape.

Both styles have a neat top half that will fit your upper body well, and a fitted waist and flared skirt that do a fantastic job of highlighting and enhancing your natural curves. These are classic coat styles that rarely date, so are a great option for your collection.

10

consider the fabric choice

Think about the fabrics - a fabric that contains some stretch will be more forgiving than stiff, starchy fabrics that don’t contour.

11

Look at the sleeve style

I often find that a wide sleeve can make a large bust look larger, especially if it is seamless like a raglan, dolman, or kimono-style sleeve. This is one of the reasons why sizing up on a coat can look so dreadful.

A more flattering sleeve style will be a narrower sleeve that’s set into the coat.

12

use colour blocking to highlight shape

Color blocking is  when contrasting colors are used in solid panels on a garment to create shape and illusion. It's one of my favorite style tips when it comes to enhancing and minimizing parts of the figure.  A dark panel down the center of a coat (this is a great example)will draw the eye in and narrow your frame.

13

high necklines will be difficult to get in a good fit

High necklines are more likely to pull across the boobs, and they can actually make your bust look larger than it is as they add weight to your torso and bulk to your bust.

14

You might want to avoid shoulder pads

Coats that have shoulder pads can make your torso and bust look larger.  BUT if you have slightly rounded shoulders then shoulder pads can actually be a great element for you - this is one of those tips that you might want to experiment with.

15

The bulkier the fabric, the bulkier you might look

Bulky coats and heavy fabrics, such as faux fur, teddy, and quilted fabrics, have a tendency to add bulk and weight that can create a boxy silhouette and make you look and feel heavier than you are. Opting for warm, thinner fabrics, like a cashmere or wool coat, will be a more slimline option.  However, if you can find a quilted coat with a belt, snap it up!  It will be warm and flattering. 

16

Add some thin down jackets to your collection

If you struggle to find a winter coat that fits you well, and you don't enjoy wearing them in a size (or 2) too large, one option is to purchase some thin warm coat liners to layer under your less warm coats.

I like these ultra light down jackets from Uniqlo - they're super thin and have a round collar that can be fastened back to mimic a v-neckline, so they work well under a variety of coat styles.  They come in a range of colors, and there's a sleeveless option too.

17

Unbutton the neckline and add a scarf

If you cannot find a coat that fits you when done up to the neck, add some warm scarves to your collection and wear these to fill the gap when it’s cold.

18

consider repositioning the buttons 

And lastly, if the buttons are only slightly pulling across the bust, you might be able to move them a little to give you a little extra room.

these are the best choice of coats for hourglass women in 2023.

Shopping for coats when you're hourglass shaped and have a large bust, doesn't have to be frustrating! 


I’ve been a personal stylist for 18 years, and I've sourced coats and jackets for hundreds of hourglass women, and these picks are some of my favorites:

Looking for a comprehensive guide to dressing your hourglass shape?

an infographic illustrating how the hourglass shape can overlap with the 3 other body shapes

some other tips to help you choose a coat that works for your hourglass shape:

What is the best winter jacket for an hourglass figure?

If you have an hourglass shape, the best winter coat to choose is a wrap style. 

You can wrap it snugly around your body to showcase your curves and keep you snug and warm, and the belt will cinch you in at the waist to highlight your defined waistline.

Here are some fantastically warm wrap coats that will work for your hourglass shape:

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How do you dress an hourglass in the winter?

My general guidelines for dressing for an hourglass body shape in the winter, is to wear fine layers that contour your shape and don’t add bulk.

Thermals or fine knits are the warmest options. Try Uniqlo, Hanro, or  Everlane for warm, super fine layers that fit seamlessly under knitwear and coats.

trench coat for hourglass

If you’re looking for a transitional coat, a trench coat is a great choice. It has a belt to cinch in your waist and highlight your hourglass figure.

Most trench coats are double breasted which can add bulk across your bust, but a simple solution is to unbutton the top couple of rows so the coat cinches you in under the bust. 

And you might want to avoid trench coats with storm flaps as these can also add bulk where you may not want it.

Here are some great trench coats for an hourglass shape:

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how do i find a flattering coat

To find a flattering coat, first, you need to understand your body shape and learn about its unique characteristics and proportions. Once you’re armed with this knowledge it will be easier to choose a coat that flatters you.

For example, if you know your torso is longer than your legs, you can look for a coat that will shorten your torso and lengthen your legs so your proportions are more balanced.

Or if you know that your hips are wider than your shoulders, you can choose a coat that won't highlight the widest part of your hips, and instead, choose a coat that broadens your shoulders to balance your top half and narrows your shoulders to help balance them with your narrower hips.

If you want to get a better understanding of your shape and which coats will flatter you the most, here are some resources that will help you:

  • I created a FREE body-shape quiz here, that will help you get clearer on what your primary body shape might be.
  • This blog post, will  give you an overview of the 4 primary body types, and shares a few things you can do to uncover what your body shape is.
  • You can purchase my Body Shape Analysis for only $27 and I will tell you exactly what your shape is.
  • And once you know what your primary body shape is, you can purchase my Ready Made Guide To Dressing Your Shape, that shows you exactly which clothes will work best for you.

What blazer style is best for an hourglass shape?

The best blazer style for an hourglass-shaped body is a single-breasted, tailored jacket like this. The low neckline will draw the eye in to narrow your bustline, and down to highlight your waist. The button that fastens below your bust will conch you in to enhance your already-defined waistline.

Wrap style blazers are another great option for an hourglass, I love how the waist tie cinches you in at the waist to highlight your curves.

Can an hourglass wear a bomber jacket?

A bomber jacket can be a difficult item to get in a good fit if you have an hourglass shape, as they typically pull across the bust. The best way to wear a bomber jacket is to open the to just below the bust so it cinches you in below the bust. it will be a better and more flattering fit.
I also recommend choosing a bomber jacket in a fluid fabric, rather than a stiff leather, this will add less bulk to hide your curves.

want to know exactly which clothes work best dress for your body shape?

My easy to use guide will show you exactly which clothes work best for your body-shape, so you can (finally!) enjoy getting dressed!

The simple guide to dressing an hourglass shape

conclusion

Ultimately, you must wear a coat that you love, that makes you feel great.  If that doesn't hug your curves, or makes your bust look larger, it doesn't matter!  The most important thing is that you enjoy wearing it.

The tips I shared in this post are there to help guide you towards something that works for you. Use them as just that - a guide - they're not hard and fast rules. Some of the most interesting and stylish looks are the ones that don't follow the body-shape guidelines! 

Experiment, have fun, and reach out if you need some help. 

iF YOU FOUND THIS POST USEFUL, YOU  MIGHT LIKE THESE:

flattering jeans for hourglass shapes

the best jeans for an hourglass shape in 2023


Jeans can be a little tricky to get in a good fit when you're an hourglass shape - these tips will help you find a pair that look great and fit well...they wont' gape at the waist! 

An hourglass shaped women wearing a flattering swimsuit to illustrate the most flattering swimwear styles for hourglass shapes

best swimwear for big busts (top picks in 2023)


I draw on my 18years experience dressing hourglass women worldwide, to bring you an in-depth article about choosing the best swimwear if you're an hourglass shape 

The simple guide to dressing an hourglass shape

simple guide to dressing an Hourglass Shape


This is the ULTIMATE guide to the hourglass body shape. you'll find out exactly wich clothes work best for your hourglass figure, so you can confidently shop for clothes that look good on you...that can't wait to wear!

Hi, I'm Niki

author and personal stylist

Over the past 18 years I’ve freed thousands of women from the frustration of disappointing outfits, by showing them how to dress to make the most of their shape, and helping them build a closet that's easy to use and fun to wear.  My blog shares the tried and true tips and knowledge I've developed, to help you stop wasting money on disappointing clothes, and build a closet you enjoy wearing.


You can find out more about Niki here

And you can get in touch with Niki here