P-Shape Body: Definition, Styling Tips & More

What is a P-shaped body and how to know if you have one?

A P shape body is a body type characterized by having a disproportionately large bust in comparison to other body parts like the waist, hips, and shoulders. This gives the body an outline similar to the letter “P”, with a full bust on top and narrower hips and waist below.

Women with a P shape body often have a bust measurement several cup sizes larger than would be proportionate for their frame size. For example, a very slender, petite woman with a 30-inch underbust measurement but DD or larger cup size would exhibit the disproportionate bust-to-frame ratio characteristic of a P shape.

Similarly, a taller or average height woman with a 32-34 inch underbust may have G, H, or larger cups. This creates the visually striking difference between the fuller bust and narrower waist associated with a P silhouette. This rare body shape affects overall fit of clothing and makes finding properly-sized bras and swimsuits especially challenging.

When it comes to swimsuits, there’s no such thing as an “ideal” body type, insecurity equally haunts everyone, regardless of your shape. It’s just that if you happen to be one average woman with a torso that falls into the typical apple/pear/inverted triangle/hourglass/etc. category, anything bikini-related may be less painful for you.

But for other rare body types or people that are in-betweens, it’s a whole other story.

It’s a disaster.

How common is the “P shape” body?

The P shape body is considered one of the less common silhouette categories overall. Below are some points regarding the commonality of P shape bodies:

  • Primarily affects tall, slim women or those with an ectomorph body type
  • Also occurs in some petite body types combined with larger breasts
  • Genetics play a key role – those predisposed to store fat in the breasts are most prone
  • Can be seen more often in areas with higher average bra cup sizes, like Northern/Western Europe
  • Becoming more common with rising rates of breast augmentation surgeries that are disproportionate to the body

How can you tell if you have a P body shape?

If you are not sure whether you have a P-shaped body or not, here’re the 9 visual characteristics:

infographic on the characteristic of a P shape body
  • Extremely top-heavy with narrower ribcage, waist, and hips.
  • Underweight with overly big busts.
  • Tall and thin with DD+ cup sizes.
  • Shoulder, tummy, and hips appear rectangular.
  • Petite with large busts.
  • Weight gains usually add up to the bust area.

Having a P shape body—like it or not—means you are constantly battling with your breasts, because nothing ever fits, and since trends are mostly made for and by flat-chested people, you are always behind them.

And finding a cute, wearable bikini for a P-shape can be as difficult as hitting the jackpot.

Is ‘P shape body’ the same as ‘pear-shaped body’?

No, a P shape body and a pear-shaped body are not the same. While both body types tend to carry more weight in the bottom half, the pear silhouette has a smooth, gradual curve outward from the shoulders to the hipline. The upper and lower halves of the body appear balanced.

The P shape has an abrupt, stark contrast between the very full bustline and the straight, slim midsection and hips. The top half dominates the outline, giving a top-heavy vibe.

Differences in Body Measurements

A pear-shaped body generally has wider hips that are larger in circumference compared to the waist and bust. The hip measurement is often greater than the bust measurement.

A P shape body, in contrast, has an extremely full bust paired with narrow hips and waist. The bust measurement far exceeds that of the hips and waist, creating a top-heavy silhouette.

Differences in Weight Distribution

For a pear shape, body fat tends to accumulate in the buttocks, thighs, and legs rather than the upper body. Weight gain leads to a fuller bottom half.

In a P shape, excess weight often concentrates in the chest region instead, enlarging the bust size further. The ribs, waist, and hips remain quite narrow even with weight fluctuations.


Finding flattering clothing and swimwear can be difficult for both body shapes, but for different reasons:

  • Pear: Bottoms are often too small while tops are too big. Creating balance and accentuating the waist is key.
  • P shape: Tops are frequently too small and bottoms too big. Covering up or downplaying the bust area helps achieve proportional balance.

What other body shapes are similar to a P shape?

Hourglass: Hourglass figures also tend to be quite busty like the P shape. Both tend to have a nipped-in waist. But hourglasses have wider, curvy hips and a more balanced lower body unlike the straight, narrow hips of a P shape.

Inverted Triangle: Inverted triangle shapes have broad shoulders and larger busts like P shapes, but they don’t typically have as large of a bust in comparison. Their waist definition also tends to be more straight rather than nipped-in.

Spoon: Spoons are similar to P shapes in that they have a larger bust paired with narrow hips. But spoons tend to store more weight and fat on the stomach area. P shapes tend to remain straight and narrow there.

Rectangle: Both rectangles and P shapes lack a defined waist and have straight figures. But rectangles lack the disproportionately large bust that P shapes have.

Oval shape: An oval shape and P shape can both exhibit a heavier upper body if weight is carried predominantly in the bust. Yet ovals lack the slim waist and hips characteristic of a P.

How to properly dress a P shape body

The P shape can be just as attractive as any other body type, but only if you get it right.

One of the biggest struggles of having a P shape is that, even if you don’t mean to, you can easily get yourself a night-out look with nearly any piece of clothing.

And covering things up does not always solve the problem, it’ll either make you baggy or look like you’ve gained extra pounds.

Dressing bigger breasts is hard, but dressing them fashionably can be near impossible if you don’t know what you’re doing.

OLIVIA FLEMING – Former Features Director at HarpersBAZAAR

For that, here are some solid tips to follow.

1. Get the right bra in the right size

to find the perfect styles for P shape body is to get your bra size right

It’s the number one thing to do, and a well-fitted bra should provide just the right amount of support you need, and should not be squishing anything, have no spillage, and no puckering.

2. Wear V necks, but keep it shallow

p shape style tip number 2

You can balance it out with tops, shirts, or dresses with regular v necks that show a bit of skin/cleavage, it’ll help add distraction and downplay the upper torso for you.

3. Go with repeated, small prints/patterns

p shape style tip number 3

Why? Because large prints will accentuate your top and can turn a lowercase “p” into an uppercase! Repeated patterns, however, will just do the opposite.

4. Use layers

layering up can help balance a P shape too

When used right, layering up can do so many things. You can always use layers to understate the upper portion of your body, to be less bulky, and to transform a P shape into any looks you want.

5. Go w/ black or dark colors

if you are top heavy dark colors will never go wrong

You can also find the balance with colors too. Black/dark hues can hide shape for you, they can trim your silhouette and make your chest less noticeable without any extra effort. Certain bright colors may flatter your skin tone, but you need to be really careful with them.

6. Tuck it in, or tie-up

tucking your top in or use belts to tie up at the waist if you are a P shape

Focusing more on your midsection is yet another very useful trick you can do to add more curves and minify the bust for a P shape.

By highlighting your waist, you can create the contrast that draws attention away from the top, and if necessary, use belts and straps! If you don’t have a defined waist, try cinching it above your belly button.

More guides to help restore your wardrobe confidence:

How to find the correct swimsuit if you are a P Shape

women wearing a bikini with texting saying bikini shopping for a P-shape body

Bikini shopping has always been a nightmare for well-endowed folks, and it’s highly likely that you will get something ill-fitting on the first few tries.

So for anyone who’s having trouble buying bathing suits online/offline, remember the following rules.

1. Pay attention to the shoulder straps

  • Make sure they are adjustable.
  • The wider the straps, the better.
  • If you are shopping for bikinis for the first time, avoid halter necks. (neck/back pain)
  • Make sure they are highly elastic. 

2. Cup shape

  • Rounded/Shell-shaped cups offer the best support.
  • With triangles and half cups, spillage can be a problem.
  • Tube/bandeau top is an absolute no-go.

3. Keep your expectations low

  • That bikini may look perfect on models, but not on you.
  • Right style and right fit don’t always come together.
  • Try changing your attitude from “OMG it’s so cute and I’m getting it” to “it’s probably not gonna fit me but let’s give it a shot”.

4. Cleavage

  • Tank/wrap/high-neck bikini tops are best for coverage.
  • If you want to emphasize it a bit, get some triangle and halter tops.
  • No matter how much cleavage you want to show, make sure the bikini top you get passes the sit-down/hands-up test.

5. One-piece swimsuit Vs. bikini sets

  • Get bikini separates because normal sizes just don’t fit a P shape, and oftentimes the top’s too small.
  • If you have a one-piece bikini, double-check the measurements and make sure the top part is not squishy and the bottom part is not saggy.
  • A tankini top with a regular bikini bottom can not only offer a flexible fit but also give you a one-piece look.

Bikinis & Swimsuit Brands That Are P-Shape Friendly


  1. Below are some of the brands that offer flexible options for different body shapes and sell bikinis in bra sizes.
  2. We update the list every 2 months to remove unavailable items and add new styles/brands.
  3. We are not working with any of the following companies.


Zebra Print High Neck Bikini Top

Zebra Print High Neck Bikini Top


All Black Zip Style Short Sleeve Bikini Top

All Black Zip Style Short Sleeve Bikini Top


Wrap Front Geometric Print Bikini Top

Wrap Front Geometric Print Bikini Top


Summer Mood Gingham Triangle Bikini Top


She Blushing Wrap Front Halter Bikini Top

She Blushing Wrap Front Halter Bikini Top


Bare Necessities

Waikiki Tie Front Bikini Top


Emerald Tie Front Bikini Top


Across The Universe Muse Halter Bikini Top


Phoenix Muse Halter Bikini Top


Bondi Triangle Halter Bikini Top













Curvy Kate

Pool Party Non Wired Triangle Bikini Top


Twist and Shout Non Wired Triangle Bikini


First Class Tankini Black


Poolside Non Wired Triangle Bikini Top


Eclipso Balcony Bikini Top



High Apex Plunge Underwire Swim Bikini Top

High Apex Plunge Underwire Swim Bikini Top


Longline Underwire Swim Bikini Top


Flutter-Sleeve No-Wire Swim Bikini Top

Flutter-Sleeve No-Wire Swim Bikini Top


Multi-Way Strappy Underwire Swim Bikini Top

Multi-Way Strappy Underwire Swim Bikini Top


Underwire Buckle Swim Bikini Top


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