bathing suit guide for women with inverted triangle body shapes

Inverted Triangle Body Shape: The Complete Swimsuit Guide

What is an inverted triangle body?

The inverted triangle body shape in women is mainly characterized by broad shoulders coupled with a comparatively narrower waist.

Other common features include a big bust, chiseled legs, and a top-heavy, athletic build.

Combinedly, these attributes lend the body a “V-shaped” appearance, similar to a triangle turned upside down.

For this reason, it’s commonly called the “inverted triangle” or the “strawberry” shape.

You are an inverted triangle only if your hip or waist measurement is 32 inches or below.

In a nutshell, a minimum difference of 2 inches or more between the shoulder and the hip sizes indicates the body is inverted triangle-shaped.

How to know if you have an inverted triangle-shaped body?

The inverted triangle body shape comes with a number of strikingly distinguishable physical features. For instance, you have this body figure if;

  • Your upper body is wider and bulkier in size than the rest of your body 
  • Your shoulder length is approximately a tiny bit longer than your waistline
  • You have plump shoulders but somewhat slender arms and legs
  • You appear neither too skinny nor too chubby
  • You have defined and flattering body curves, especially bosom
  • Any amount of weight gain reflects in your upper half first.

Notably, some of these traits also commonly occur in certain top hourglass bodies. However, the two body shapes are drastically different from each other in several ways.

Top hourglass vs. Inverted triangle – The difference

An inverted triangle body shape is different from a top hourglass body shape in the following ways;

Shoulder-to-hip proportion

Those with an inverted triangle body shape have big, chunky shoulders that outsize their hips. But in the case of a top hourglass body shape, the shoulder and hip sizes are well-aligned. 

Waistline definition

The feature that makes an inverted triangle-shaped body look tapered is the scarcely defined waistline. Contrastingly, top hourglass bodies have highly defined waistlines that make them look curvy. 


Due to that heavy upper half, inverted triangle-shaped bodies appear brawny. On the other hand, top hourglass bodies look chiseled and voluptuous, especially in the bosom and hip areas. 

Inverted triangle and other body shapes

All body shapes change, and the inverted triangle is no exception. Some of the most frequently noticed transitions in this figure include;

  • Shifting toward a top hourglass shape if the hips and shoulders make even in size.
  • Shifting toward a diamond shape with the widening of the torso.
  • Shifting toward a pear shape if the hips outgrow the shoulders.
  • Shifting toward an apple shape with the simultaneous widening of the bosom and midriff.

best bathing suit styles for inverted triangle

When it comes to beachwear, there’s immense scope for styling the inverted triangle body in a way that it looks flattering.

Here are a few styles that you can opt for;

Bikini Tops


Any neckline design that succeeds in drawing focus away from the broad shoulder area is the perfect neckline for inverted triangle-shaped women.

Precisely, you should aim to seek the ones that make your upper body appear narrow and chiseled, right in proportion to your waist. This will make you look less athletic while adding a beautiful, curvy touch. 

In this context, bikini tops with deep and long necklines deliver just right. They do not cluster attention but equally distribute it, either towards the bosom or below.

A range of suitable bikini top necklines: V-neck, scoop neck, sweetheart neck, halter neck, and plunging neck. 


If you have an inverted triangle-shaped body, a more preferable resort for you would be to choose printless, solid bikini tops.

Prints and motifs not only yield unnecessary limelight, but they also downplay other style elements.

Yet, if you want to sport a printed bikini, choose your prints wisely. 

Since your upper half is already pretty voluminous, go for relaxed, playful prints that aren’t very eye-catching.

Large floral ones also do the trick in shifting focus away from those bulky shoulders. Stripes – whether horizontal or vertical – are a big no-no. 

Refrain from picking bikini tops with embellishments or tasselling, especially around the neck. They make the top side look all the more heavy.

Also, make it a point to stick to neutral, earthy tones to avoid emphasis to the maximum.

Bikini Bottoms


When choosing bikini bottoms, go for the ones that help you draw attention toward your hips and make your lower body look voluptuous.

Bottoms with high-hip cuts do exactly this while accentuating your waistline. You can also go for regular swim bottoms or high-waist bikini panties. 

So choose bright, neon tints like lime green, clementine orange, or fuschia pink.

To add more details, pick bottoms with flashy prints and embellishments. This way, you can easily add volume to your lower body and achieve a more balanced look.

Some bikini bottom styles you can go for are: side-tie panties, Brazilian bikini thongs, high-cut panties, and a-line bikini skirts.

One piece swimsuits


one piece bathing suits that are good for inverted triangles

Swimsuits that blur out the extra shoulder thickness and accentuate the hips and waist are perfect for inverted triangle bodies.

So pick the ones with uneven, asymmetrical necklines, like one-shoulder swimsuits.

They create an illusion that not only makes your big shoulders look nicely tuned. In addition, they also make your hips look more appealing and add a touch of definition to your waistline. 

If you are rather skinny, your ideal swimwear style should be one that highlights your bust area to strike visual harmony across your body.

To achieve this, you can go for underwired swimsuits, padded swimsuits, or the ones with deep, plunging necklines.  

Other swimsuit styles for inverted triangles include: a-line, halter neck, and cut-out styles.

What to avoid if you are an inverted triangle?

Being a top-heavy body shape, the inverted triangle attracts the most attention toward the shoulders. To balance it out, here are a few swimwear shopping tips you should follow;

No strapless swimwear

Strapless swimwear styles resist focus on the hips and divert it toward the shoulders. So, keep bandeaus, off-shoulders, and tube-top bikinis and swimsuits at bay. 

Avoid embellishments on the top

Ornamented bikini tops add extra volume to your shoulders, making your body look disproportionate. So go for solid, plain bikini tops with no tasselling or embellishment.

Don’t choose high necklines

Necklines that conceal your entire neck area make your shoulders look extra concentrated and bulky. So, it’s good to avoid high necklines, especially turtle neck swimwear styles.

Ditch shorts and briefs

Basic shorts and briefs do not flatter your bottom. That redirects all the focus toward your shoulders and makes your figure look more imbalanced. Go for high-leg panties instead.

Give bright colors a miss

Bright-colored bikini tops emphasize your upper body, precisely your shoulders. So, avoid sporting them at all costs, especially on the top.

Luna Wilde covers the latest swimwear collections, designer collabs, tutorials and industry innovations. She brings over 5 years of digital journalism experience to crafting clever, conversational content about all swimwear-involved things.

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