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How to Reduce Broad Shoulders With 6 Female Top Styles

Wondering how to reduce the bulky look of broad shoulders on the female body by selecting the right shirt (or dress) style? I’ve got you covered!

As a woman who was also born with broad shoulders, there are times when I want them to look less muscular and bulky. I don’t completely dislike them, being that broad shoulders are considered a beautiful trait to have (yet they are always the first body part to get sunburned lol!). 

In fact, broad shoulders are a feature of many beautiful models in the fashion industry. This is because a wide range of styles on the market is extremely appealing on strong, straight-lined shoulders.  

If you have broad shoulders, then you likely have an inverted triangle body shape. With this kind of body shape, it is best to draw the attention away from the shoulders to other areas, such as the chest and waist. 

The secret to styling broad shoulders involves optical illusion. Wearing tops with certain necklines and details can soften the sharp appearance of the shoulders, as well as emphasize their beauty. 

Here is how to reduce broad shoulders using six female shirt styles that make them appear a bit more angular and graceful. 

1. Tops with Wide Straps 

Clothing styles that feature wide straps – such as a camisole, dress, or tunic – minimize the appearance of broad shoulders. The thickness of the straps breaks up the chiseled shape of the shoulders, making them look less broad. 

2. Asymmetrical Strappy Tops 

Tops that have asymmetrical shoulder straps bring beauty and elegance to broad shoulders. The juxtaposed position of the straps creates a beautiful balance of the shoulders by visually breaking down their otherwise proportioned shape.  

3. Tiny, Very Thin Shoulder Strap Tops 

Here’s why very thin strap tops work for broad shoulders: The attention shifts to the waist, away from the shoulders. By showcasing threadlike straps, the broad shoulders become less prominent to the eye, allowing the focus to be drawn elsewhere, such as the waist area. 

4. One Shoulder Tops

Tops that travel across just one shoulder, whether a tank or long sleeve, enhances the look of broad shoulders with visual equivalence. This is because having one shoulder bare and the other shoulder covered (or somewhat covered) creates a balanced look, yet minimizes the normally stout appearance of the upper body.  

5. V-Neck Tops 

V-neck tops are another shirt style that plays on optical illusion to reduce the look of broad shoulders on women. The V-neckline deters the attention from the shoulders down to the chest. The V shape in particular creates a balanced effect on the shoulders, making them appear not so broad.  

6. Off-Shoulder Tops 

Go for an off-the-shoulder top with a neckline that creates a U-shape across your upper body, such as a V neckline, sweetheart neckline, or scoop neckline. These necklines draw the eye away from the chiseled look of the shoulders to instead highlight the bicep muscles and chest. 

I think it looks very lovely and elegant! Avoid off-shoulder tops that go straight across your upper body if you don’t want your broad shoulders to stand out so much.  

These six shirt styles are my recommendations for those who want to know how to reduce broad shoulders so that as a woman, the body looks more balanced. 

Shirt Styles to Avoid on Broad Shoulders 

I want to add that there is absolutely nothing wrong with flaunting broad shoulders as they are. What’s important is that you love how you look, giving you the confidence to live your best life whenever you are in the moment. 

So, if you prefer other tops aside from these I listed above, that’s perfectly alright!

However, I suggest that you stay away from these types of tops if you don’t want your broad shoulders to be super noticeable:

  • Padded shoulder tank tops and blazers
  • Tube tops or strapless tops 
  • Halter tops
  • Bolero Tops 

These tops effortlessly highlight broad shoulders because their designs support the straight, robust line of the upper body’s silhouette of the inverted triangle.

But, I do still wear these occasionally as I see fit. It really depends on your preference. 

My broad shoulders stand out in this padded blazer!

Love Your Broad Shoulders!

One thing to keep in mind is not to be so self-conscious of your broad shoulders. Everyone is born different and unique. 

My shoulders are so broad, that I have had people ask me if I am a professional dancer or gymnast upon meeting me for the first time. I know they are noticeable and that is why they ask, but I actually think it is funny and cannot help but laugh because I have neither of those skills (I wish! lol).

If you get comments from people about them, then they are really just fascinated by you! Isn’t that cool?

There you go! Now you know how to reduce the look of broad shoulders. As a female, (Or however you identify) remember to love your body – all the parts of it – because it’s what makes you one of a kind! And well, there is no one else like you!

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