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The Most Flattering Neckline For Your Face and Body

Necklines come and go in popularity but it’s helpful to know which ones flatter your shape best. Since the goal is to draw the eye up to your face, that neckline you’re sporting can be pretty darn important. Don’t think of these as rules. Think of them as proportion tips to use or not as you please.

Fashion is architecture: it is a matter of proportions. – Coco Chanel

Let’s start with the best neckline for your body shape.

Round shaped figuresillustration of round body shape

The round or apple body shape is narrow on top and bottom and is fuller through the tummy. Your shoulders may be wide, narrow, or rounded and your backside tends to be flat. Scoop and deep V necklines are best for you because they elongate the look of your torso and draw attention to your face. High and turtle necklines will make your bustline look larger.

Triangle body shapetriangle body shape illustration


Triangle or pear-shaped figures have narrow shoulders and wide hips. A bateau, square, cowl, and jewel neckline add width to balance your hips. V-necks are universally flattering but the high, wider versions are most flattering for you.

Inverted triangleinverted triangle body shape illustration

Inverted triangle figures have wide shoulders and narrow hips. They often have flat backsides and little or no waist definition. Cowl, halter, deep scoop and V-necklines look best on you.

Rectangle body shaperectangle body shape illustration

The rectangle body shape is straight up and down with little or no waist definition. Halter, deep scoop, and deeper V-necklines look great on you. Asymmetrical necklines and shawl collars add softness which adds balance to your straight silhouette.

Hourglass figureshourglass body shape illustration

The hourglass silhouette is balanced through the shoulders and hips with a well-defined waistline. Lucky you! Crew, scoop, boat, and V necklines are all flattering. Boxy tops are not your friend.

In addition to body shape, your neck length and face shape also plays a role in which necklines work best on you. Here’s a rundown by neckline:

Boat neckline

These look great on women with long necks and long faces because they draw the eye vertically. They help widen the look of narrow shoulders and balance wide hips. Boat necks look great with oval and round faces.


These flatter people most everybody. They’re especially helpful for women with broad shoulders, and short necks because they lengthen the look of your body and draw the eye up toward your face. This neckline helps petite women look taller and balance out a pear figure.

Sweetheart Neckline

This is almost universally flattering because it lengthens a short neck and chin, provides balance for a square jaw. It creates the illusion of curves and accentuates the bustline in a modest way. The wide neckline helps balance the hips in the hourglass, rectangle, and pear-shaped figures.


Crewnecks draw attention to your face and neck. They can accentuate a large bustline, make your neck look shorter and your face look rounder. The crewneck looks great on a narrow or angular face.

Scoop neckline

A looser more relaxed version of the crewneck. These elongate a short neck and helps balance a long face. A large and long scoop flatters the small bust and short neck. A deeper scoop accentuates a large chest and makes your neck appear longer. Angular faces look great with scoop necklines.


Cowlnecks flatter both large and small bustlines and works with most face shapes. If the fabric is bulky it can make your neck look shorter.


These look great with a long neck and face. They accentuate the chest so it is flattering on small-busted women. Be sure there is space between the top of the neckline and your chin. Double chins are seldom flattered by these:) Turtlenecks can make wide shoulders look wider.

Finding your personal style is often a journey of trial and error. Knowing the most flattering proportions for your silhouette can save you a lot of time. Details matter so keep your body shape in mind while shopping.

Do you shop with your body shape in mind?

If you liked this post, I would love you to share this graphic to Pinterest.what's the best neckline for your face and body?

Thanks for reading ladies and remember to wear what makes you feel confident!


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  1. I’ve read through the article and comments and am feeling inspired and uplifted with everyone sharing.

    I’m an hourglass spoon, which is a bit rare, so finding clothes is an intuitive game and can quickly become a disaster.

    As we are less than 10% of the population, so it takes a certain mindset to find clothes, that flatter and fit.

    Wrap tops, dresses and jackets are good. Form fitting clothes, pencil skirts, and floor length high/mid rise jeans all work.

    The jeans may be skinny, slim straight, wide straight, or cigarette. Materials such as organic cotton and hemp win.

    After reading this I’m still not sure what neckline suits. A form fitting silk turtleneck? A mid-v? A crew or scoop?

    Love to hear any feedback and thoughts, as well as accessory suggestions, colors, haircuts and anything else I forgot!

    I have a medium short bob with wide shoulders. Shoulders a bit bigger than bust, legs about 31.5 inseam.

    Love to hear back about how I can better dress myself a bit and to learn some tips and tricks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. If your shoulders are larger than your bust, I would question the hourglass shape. I use bone structure to determine silhouette, not our fleshy parts.We cover many of those things here so I’m glad you’ve joined us

  2. I am definitely a Round Shape but with 34DD bust line- deep V shirts are a definite no for me, especially in professional attire. Being only 5’4″ adds another level of difficulty it getting an over all flattering fit.

  3. Christine says:

    Love this! And the slide shows/neckline descriptions make it so clear! I have a round shape with narrow shoulders and a short neck. A trick I use is to add a long (untied) scarf or a long necklace over a round neck top to fool the eye. Many V necks are too deep or gape above my bust because of my narrow shoulders/big bust. So I get the same effect of a lengthening V neck with my trick.

  4. Karen McB says:

    A public-service announcement 🙂 for those who want a more modest V neck
    With my square face and short neck, I like a V-neck tee — but also have a goiter and short hair, so I want shirts that are cut closer to my neck rather than the wide Vs so often available. Norm Thompson offered the perfect solution, a narrow-V, cut a bit higher in the back, so it has a little more style. Even though NT has gone out of business, the shirt seems to be offered still at Appleseeds here.
    I think I have 18 of these shirts in various colors and sizes. I’ve found that (like all clothes) one item can be cut a bit differently than another depending on where in the stack it was when the cutter came down, so dimensions can vary. Still, excellent choices.

    1. Thanks for sharing that Karen. I am always on the lookout for modest v necks.

  5. Great article. If you find any tops with Vee necks that are not cut too low please let me know. I don’t like a neckline that shows too much when I bend over.

    1. I am on a hunt for modest v necks too. I’ll share what I find.

  6. Definitely pinned this article, Jennifer for reference purposes. I honestly can’t recall if I ever have worn a crew or boat neck (exception — a jacket neckline or perhaps a button-up cardigan sweater which I would leave the top two buttons undone) and I do avoid mock-turtle necks. All said; kind of makes you sympathetic for men since their pickins are slim when it comes to choices in necklines … ☺.

    1. You’re right. I’ve yet to see men have our options 🙂

  7. Awesome post! So helpful…Thanks!!!

  8. Great post, but I’m not sure which category I fit in. In my younger days, I was pear-shaped. Menopause took away my waist – or should I say that all the extra weight I am now carrying is located from bust line to my thighs. Proportion wise, my hips/thighs are probably still wider than the rest. But my tummy and rear are big too. Bra is 36DD. My face is round, which also affects neckline choices. Which of your categories would be best for me?

    1. Joan I hear you! I would like to hear about this also. I used to be an hourglass but my middle has thickened and my face has gotten rounder. So what happens when you are somewhere between two shapes?

      1. I generally look at bone structure which doesn’t change. If you were an hourglass and your middle has thickened, you may be closer to a rectangle now.

  9. I find this to be very helpful.

  10. Took me years to figure out that I just didn’t like crew necks. I always felt uncomfortable in them. There’s always a reason why we feel uncomfortable but we may not understand it. We need to feel comfortable above all in our clothes I think. Necklines are such a great thing to talk about. Thanks, Jennifer.

    1. I couldn’t agree more, Eve. We have to feel comfortable in our clothes.

  11. Super article – so helpful. I have a pear body type, small shoulders and bust. Guess this is why my favorite t-shirts are bateau & boat neckline from Gap. I have them in all colors. So easy to throw a scarf on to change the look or wear by themselves.

  12. Pamela Lutrell says:

    Always so helpful …thanks for the great information, Jennifer!

  13. I can see from this I need to rethink my necklines! I have stayed away from V-necks due to my age and feeling like my upper chest isn’t what I need to emphasize, but since I am big busted (and wish I wasn’t) I will have to now look at V-necks in a different way:) I also have liked wearing some turtlenecks but see now that those are not my friends! I have never thought of necklines all that much, so thanks for sharing this information.

    1. Higher v necks will be most flattering for you any maybe more comfortable too. Keep in mind if you love something, you should wear it!

  14. Love this. I’m a classic rectangle now and have been trying to figure out what to wear. Now I know why the deep neck Everlane tees are one of my favourites!

  15. Great information!! Thank you

  16. Very informative post. I’ll be looking at necklines from here on.

  17. So helpful! Thank you!

    I wish stores would arrange clothing by body type.

  18. Great tips, Jennifer! I used to love turtle necks, but lately I’ve been wearing mock necks and cowls. They are more flattering at my age.

  19. Fabulous tips! Thank you, Jennifer. I usually look best in V neck, scoop, or cowl neck tops, but many stores are stuck in the crew neck or boat neck rut (think JJill). Often I buy these types of tops because I like the fit, color or fabric.
    Your article is a reminder that maybe I should pay more attention to the necklines of the garments I buy. Enjoy your day!

    1. I have trouble finding my favorite V necklines at several retailers too. Talbots, for example, make much more crew and boatneck than Vee.