Outerwear for Curvy Women


For many women, shopping for stylish clothes that fit well is a chore at best and a nightmare at worst. Women come in many shapes and sizes, and not every style is right for every body.

As a customer service representative, I get a fair number of calls from self-described “curvy” women who have trouble finding the right outerwear. Confession time: I’m curvy as well.  I wear a size 12/14. I can relate to all your struggles with finding pants that aren’t 4 inches too long and fit well through the hips and butt. I too have been frustrated with women’s jackets that don’t have enough room for my chest. I feel your pain, and I’m here to offer you some tips to help you select the perfect outerwear for your curvy figure.

1)    Go fitted, not frumpy Curvy women often fall into the trap of wearing loose, baggy clothing because at least we know it gives our curves extra room, it tends to be comfortable, and we mistakenly think it hides our flaws. Not so. Wearing big, boxy tent-like jackets and pants will only emphasize your shape and make you seem bigger.

Styles to Try: A fitted jacket like the Obermeyer Circuit Down Jacket emphasizes your assets in a flattering way. For pants, you can’t beat the fit and feel of the Nils Lane pant. The four-way stretch fabric is comfortable and ensures a flawless fit. It comes in a range of sizes (up to size 20 available for special order) and the best part: long, regular and short inseams! A short, curvy girl’s dream.

2)    Cinch that waist!  You may have noticed the wide waist belt trend that has been so popular in fashion in recent years. This look translates to outerwear as well. Accentuating your waist line is a great way to show your shape (or even create shape). A cinched waist gives you that desirable hourglass figure.

Styles to Try: The Columbia Midtown Myth jacket is a down jacket that won’t make you look like the Michelin man! The cinched waist is very flattering, and the down insulation and Omni-Heat lining keep you feeling warm and looking hot!

3)     Make color work for you Curvy women often make the mistake of wearing a monochromatic outfit in a dark color, because black is slimming. Wearing one color head to toe hides your shape. Instead, pair a bright color jacket with a dark color pant to emphasize your waist and chest and draw attention away from your rear. If you want to emphasize your bottom half and draw attention away from your midsection, try a bright pant with a dark jacket.

Styles to Try: The Burton Women’s Indulgence Pant in Vain paired with the Burton Women’s Prowess Jacket in True Black will keep the emphasis on your bottom half. The Spyder Women’s Posh Faux Fur Jacket in Fuchsia paired with the Spyder Women’s Ruby Tailored Fit Pant in Black will de-emphasize your backside and keep the attention on your top half. Plus the clean lines and stretch fabrics make for a very flattering fit.

4)     Choose the correct size  This may seem like a no-brainer, but a lot of fit problems stem from choosing the wrong size. Sizing varies from brand to brand, and certain brands like Burton even have lines with different sizing/fits for different body types. We really can’t stress this enough: measure, measure, measure!  Since you can’t try on our outerwear before you buy, taking accurate measurements is key to choosing the right size. We have size charts for all our brands here. When you measure:

  • Measure your natural waist for a waist measurement.
  • Measure the fullest part of your bust for a chest measurement.
  • Measure the fullest part of your rear around your hips for a hip measurement.
  • Use a pair of pants that is the perfect length and measure the inseam from the crotch to the ankle to get an inseam measurement.

The WinterWomen.com team is available via phone or email 7 days a week from 9am-5pm Mountain Time to answer all your sizing questions. We can try styles on for you and give our personal opinion of the fit, or we can take exact measurements of the size and style you’d like to purchase. If all else fails, you can exchange for another size or style–we offer free exchange shipping both ways (in the U.S. only)!

Finding great-fitting outerwear that flatters a curvy figure can be challenging, but the payoff is worth it! You’ll look and feel great all winter in our womens designer ski clothes and women’s snowboard clothing. Just follow these four tips and call WinterWomen.com with your questions.  We’re always here to help!


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2 Responses to “Outerwear for Curvy Women”

  1. Sherry December 15, 2012 at 6:29 am #

    Great post! Thanks! As a woman with 44″ hips and a 35″ waist, it’s extremely difficult to find pants that fit. Add the idea of warmth to the mix and it becomes impossible. (My rear is always cold!) Got any recommendations?

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