Dressing for the season of eating

Dressing for the season of eating

Start your diet next month..er, year
how to dress slimmer at the holidays

By Megan Collins | Last Updated: Nov 16 2018 | 5 min read

holiday party food

The traditional, all-American end-of-year food binge is about to be in full swing. Starting with Turkey Day and slobbering straight through ’til New Year’s, our calendars are packed with a succession of holiday parties, family dinners and champagne. Lots and lots of champagne.

Aside from a gentle reminder to get thee to a gym, I don’t intend to play grinch this holiday season. After all, this is the one time a year you get to stuff yourself in the name of peace on earth. Instead, we’ve pulled together a few tips for how guys can dress slimmer after gobbling up a few too many bacon-wrapped everythings, with eggnog chasers.

Below, 7 tips on how to dress slimmer for guys this holiday season:


Big patterns on your clothes make you look – well, bigger. Stick to subtle checks and prints, and keep them away from your widest canvas. Most guys carry their extra weight in the belly, meaning prints should stay below the belt. Sorry fellas, no reindeer sweaters this year. If you absolutely must do a bold pattern up top, make it an accent – a pocket square perhaps. Or a festive bow tie!


Wearing a monochrome look head to toe makes you look taller and skinnier – always a good combo. Opposing colors on top and bottom cuts you visually in half, making you appear shorter and, unfortunately, stumpier. You’ll stealthily look your slimmest in one color.

Think about it: have you ever seen a fat ninja? Exactly.


I hope I’m preaching to the well-clothed choir by now, but please, please don’t don pleated pants this holiday season. Extra folds mean extra volume in the region us ladies like to call our “trouble area,” that is, the hips, butt and belly. Cut out the pleats to cut out a few phantom pounds.


Skipping extra material helps; so does skipping extra-heavy material. Stick to slimmer knits and fabrics to cut down on unnecessary bulk.

Meaning? Cashmere: yes. Wool: no.


Horizontal stripes are no friend to a stocky frame. If you’re reaching for the tinsel and the Tums in equal measure this season, keep your look on the up and up with vertical stripes. And stick to a pinstripe. The thin line draw the eye up and down (rather than across) your body, making it look longer, and yes, leaner.


A v-neck is a great “having a fat day” clothing option. By now, you’ve hopefully noticed a pattern in this advice – elongate lines and draw the eye away from any holly, jolly hefty zones. The v-neck’s low collar does both. At the office? Try a suit jacket with only one or two buttons, to the same effect.


Remember Chris Farley in Tommy Boy singing “Fat guy in a little coat” to David Spade? Okay, that shudder you felt just before the jacket split is the same one women get when they see guys wearing too-tight attire.

Steer clear.

At the other extreme, ditch baggy duds; they just make you look sloppy. And no, they’re not fooling anyone into thinking you’ve got a six-pack hiding underneath. A good fit covers a multitude of sins, including that third piece of pumpkin pie.

Tell me:

What’s your strategy for enjoying the holidays in moderation (or do you just say, “F*ck it” and make up for it with soup and breadcrumbs during No Jeans January)?

> Want more inclusive style ideas? Check out the new rules for guys who are big, tall or both

::Originally published December 2016. Updated with fresh product links!::

I started Style Girlfriend to help guys look, feel, and act their best.