January is prime time for slim-down resolutions and “detoxes,” but it also coincides with the start of awards show season, beginning with the Golden Globes on Jan. 7. Wellness resolutions notwithstanding, if the goal is to look thinner, look no further than the red carpet for tried-and-true styling hacks that can be applied to real life. No heavy lifting (or dieting) required.
1. Use an A-line style to emphasize the waist
Perhaps the oldest slimming style hack in the book, the waist cinch has the most impact when paired with an A-line silhouette. The red-carpet return of the tea-length dress, as seen on Nicole Kidman and Millie Bobby Brown — both in Calvin Klein — is a good reminder of this vintage look.
2. Created a lean line with dress details
Sometimes the right dress is all one needs to create a slimmer look, whether it’s with illusion color blocking or embellishment details, like the buttons on Mary J. Blige’s navy dress.
3. Go nude (with heels)
One of the most tried-and-true red carpet styling tricks, the nude heel continues to live on as a slim-down move because it works. It’s also a signature tactic for Jennifer Lopez, who wears both patent, matte leather and sparklier iterations of the style.
4. Keep it all simple
Less does not have to mean more. Selena Gomez stays simple and sleek in black strappy dress, pulled-back hair, nude lips and minimal accessories (save for the amazing architectural heel on her Jacquemus sandals).
5. Lengthen the neckline
Whether it’s a V-neck sweater or a plunging evening dress, the V-shaped neckline does wonders for the face and an overall streamlined appearance. Olivia Wilde’s sparkly red Michael Kors gown highlights her perfect skin, and the floor length is forgiving on anyone.
6. Brighten up a (belted) monochrome look
The continuous line of color — regardless of the actual hue — is the key to this trick, which means it’s more important to match top to bottom. Stylist usually recommend using a more subdued palette, but Blake Lively showed that it can even be done with a bright banana yellow top and wide leg pants (the belt also helps).
7. Go long and adorned
There’s a reason that the long, flowing and highly embellished gowns by Valentino and Gucci continue to be both red carpet and fashion girl favorites. The long-sleeve, floor length and belted-waist silhouette is perfectly proportionate and allows for height-enhancing hidden platform shoes. The dress cut also provides a good balance to intricate embellishments so they don’t look too busy.
8. Try a riskier style in black
The ultimate slimming tool, wearing black allows for more risk-taking in sexier or more avant-garde styles. Longtime reigning Queen of the Black Dress Jennifer Aniston has proved time after time that a slit here and a plunge there can be done tastefully.