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How to Wear Boxy Tops

In this Article:Choosing a Boxy TopPairing Your Boxy TopWearing a Boxy Top ComfortablyCommunity Q&A

Boxy tops are a chic way to show off your love of fashion without being too revealing. These tops are cut in a box shape at the torso, giving the upper body a square shape that goes great with all kinds of outfits and body types. Learn how to pick the right boxy top for your shape and pair it with the perfect outfit to have you looking your best.

Part 1
Choosing a Boxy Top

  1. 1
    Decide between a crop and a regular boxy top. Most boxy tops are either a standard fitted t-shirt length, or are crop tops. There’s a lot of variations within crop tops too--you can get a shirt that shows off your entire midriff, or one that just shows a hint of stomach. Think about what you’re most comfortable with before you buy a top.[1]
    • Boxy tops that end above the hips usually look better on most people.
  2. 2
    Choose a fabric. Boxy tops hold the material away from your body, so you can try fabrics you wouldn’t ordinarily buy. A fitted shirt made of leather or layered crochet might not be your style, but in a boxy top the focus will be on the fabric itself, not on how it looks on your body.[2]
    • Boxy tops looks best in thicker, heavier fabrics like leather, knit, or linen. The thicker fabric helps hold shape together.
    • Avoid boxy tops made of t-shirt-style fabrics like jersey or ultra-thin cotton. They tend to lose their box shape after a few washes.
  3. 3
    Pick out a pattern. This is a great opportunity to play around a little with patterns. Because your upper body is hidden, you don’t have to pay attention to whether or not a pattern is flattering for your body type. Focus entirely on what kind of pattern you think is attractive and what will match your existing outfits. Solid-color boxy tops look fantastic too![3]
  4. 4
    Fit your boxy top at the shoulders first. The only part of a boxy top that should be fitted perfectly is the area around your shoulders. If your top is too tight at the shoulders, you won’t be able to move normally and you could rip the top. If it’s too loose, it might look more like a regular baggy shirt than a boxy top! Your top’s shoulders should line up with your actual shoulders--they shouldn’t sag lower or stick up.[4]
  5. 5
    Make sure your top isn’t tight. A boxy top shouldn’t rest against your bust, stomach, or hips, and it definitely shouldn’t be tight around those areas! Your boxy top should flow downward from the shoulders in a natural box shape without hugging any curves.[5]
    • If you can’t find a top that fits your shoulders and isn’t too tight elsewhere, buy a top in a size larger and take it to be altered.

Part 2
Pairing Your Boxy Top

  1. 1
    Buy a matching set. Some boxy tops are available as part of a matching set, usually with a pencil skirt. Buying the matching set takes a lot of guesswork out of pairing your outfit. To make it stand out a little, wear some bright shoes or chunky accessories.[6]
  2. 2
    Layer your boxy top over another shirt. If it’s a little cold or you aren’t able to wear the shirt alone, layer it over another shirt. A white button-up is always a great choice, but any fitted shirt with sleeves longer than the box top will be fine. This look is best for crop tops.[7]
    • This is also a great look paired with a shirt with extra-wide or bell-shaped sleeves.
  3. 3
    Wear it with tight pants. Since a boxy top hides your upper figure, contrasting it with something that shows off your lower body is an easy way to get a great look. Match your boxy top with skinny jeans or straight pants to add a little variety to your silhouette. You can even try wearing it with leggings![8]
  4. 4
    Pair it with a pencil skirt. Pencil skirts also show off your lower body, and they’re a great way to make your boxy top work-ready. You can buy pencil skirts in a variety of lengths--any of them will look great with a boxy top. It’s usually best to match a solid skirt to a busy top or vice versa, but you can also mix and match patterns for a daring look.[9]
  5. 5
    Try a miniskirt for a night out. Pairing a boxy top with a tight miniskirt is great for nights out, especially if you want to show off a little but don’t want to show too much. It’s best to stick to fitted, tighter miniskirts instead of flared ones. An A-line or flared miniskirt with a boxy top can create a rectangular effect.[10]
  6. 6
    Wear it with a full skirt for a feminine effect. Try pairing your boxy top with a full, fluffy skirt. This look is best for wider skirts and crop tops. A longer boxy top will hide your waistline, and if your skirt isn’t very full, you can wind up looking like a long rectangle.[11]
  7. 7
    Pair it with wide-leg pants for a daring look. Normally, you should pair loose tops with tight bottoms. But if you’re willing to break a few fashion rules, try matching your boxy top with wide-leg pants. This look isn’t for everyone--it looks best if you’re tall, are wearing a crop top, and are wearing high heels.[12]
  8. 8
    Put on shorts in the summer. When it’s hot out, a boxy top is a great way to stay cool--you get more breezes and less sweat with a looser top! Try matching your boxy top with a pair of shorts to beat the summer heat.[13]
  9. 9
    Try a statement necklace. Any outfit with a boxy top will look better with a statement necklace. This is especially good for solid boxy tops, since it helps break up a big square of color. Longer necklaces are best for this look, but you can wear collarbone and choker necklaces too.[14]

Part 3
Wearing a Boxy Top Comfortably

  1. 1
    Make sure your top doesn’t show too much. Everybody has their own comfort levels when it comes to showing their body in public. Make sure your boxy top isn’t showing more than you want by checking how it rises in the front and the back. Before you wear your top out, practice standing up, sitting down, and raising your arms above your head. Look in the mirror or ask a friend to check where the top rises.[15]
  2. 2
    Avoid low-rise bottoms. Boxy tops look great with higher-rise bottoms. Low-rise bottoms can show more skin than the top is designed for, and they can make the top look like it's not fitted. Stick to regular or high-rise bottoms with your boxy tops.[16]
    • High-rise pants and skirts are a great way to make even a crop top work-appropriate.
  3. 3
    Try not to wear jackets. Jackets tend to make boxy tops bunch up uncomfortably, and a heavy coat can make you look a little too boxy. Boxy tops are best worn in warm or mild weather. If you want to keep wearing your boxy top into the fall and winter, try layering it over a shirt or sweater, or taking off your coat as soon as you get inside.[17]

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    Tips

    • Try your boxy top on in person before you buy it. Boxy tops can be hard to fit, so if you're buying online, be sure you're already familiar with the designer!

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    Categories: Personal Care and Style

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