Calling Short Girls: The Best Skirts for Petite Women You Need Now (2022)

Since I am 5’2″, I have gone through all kinds of frustration when searching for that perfect skirt.

Skirts don’t have inseam, so it might seem like you can always find skirts that don’t require hemming. However, just that you can pull it on doesn’t mean it looks good on you.

After years of trial and error, I’ve found these 7 skirts work the best on women with shorter legs!

The best skirts for petite women should not just be the shorter version of regular size skirts.

Because certain styles are not suitable for petite women, making it shorter doesn’t really change that. Okay, call me a perfectionist, but I think the best skirts for petite women need to meet the following criteria:

  • They should shift focus upwards and draw attention to your upper body
  • They should make your legs look longer and create the illusion of height
  • They should help create a long and lean silhouette and lengthen your petite figure
  • They should be flattering to your specific body shape, i.e. accentuate your assets and camouflage the areas you do not want people to focus on
Calling Short Girls: The Best Skirts for Petite Women You Need Now (1)

Table of Contents

High Waisted Skirts

I was wearing this skirt in this picture.

(Video) How to choose the best skirts for YOUR body shape

These are universally flattering to petites, and that is why they are the number one on our list of best skirts for petites. High waisted skirts are a perfect piece to elevate your waist line, and improve the proportion of your body.

  • The key of wearing a high waisted skirt is to tuck in your top, so that your legs will look longer than they are.
  • High waisted skirts also have the flare of retro style, which is quite hot in today’s fashion trends.
  • Another bonus of wearing high waisted skirt is it can also make your stomach look flat, which is what every body type would appreciate regardless if you are petite or not.

Since high waisted style has more fabrics around the waist area, you should be careful about the colors and patterns you choose. Darker color and simple prints or patterns are universally flattering. If you are petite plus, you want to avoid colors that are too bright or patterns that are too busy, as they will only catch people’s attention around your tummy area.

When picking out the best skirts for petites, one general guideline for women under 5’4″ is to go with skirts 3-4 inches above your knee. However, for high waisted style, you do not have to be restricted by this rule. Because your waistline is significantly lifted by the skirt, you can opt for knee length and your legs will still look elongated.

A Line Skirts

I am wearing this skirt in this picture.

A line skirts are on the top list of best skirts for petites because they are universally flattering, regardless of your body type. The shape is clean and the slight flare makes your legs look more slender.

  • If you are a petite pear shape who is self conscious about your prominent thighs and hips, A line skirts are your best friend because you do not have to worry about drawing attention to those area.
  • If you happen to be a petite inverted triangle shape, A line skirt balance out your broad shoulders.
  • If you are a petite rectangle shape and your goal is to create curves through your outfit, go with A line skirts with ruffles.

I am a petite apple shape and my area of concern is my stomach, I love A line skirts because the flare camouflage my mid riff and I do not have to worry about showing my mid section like in a pencil skirt. The best length for petite women is slightly above the knee or at the knee. Because of the A line shape, if you are wearing a very short skirt and want to avoid showing your undies, make sure it is a skort.

Mini Skirts

I was wearing this skirt in this picture.

These are the Classic Must-haves for Your Petite Wardrobe!

This one goes without saying. As a short girl, you NEED mini skirts. If you don’t own a lot of them already, please, please add some to your wardrobe. Mini skirts are the easiest to style for a short person and make her legs look super long, instantly.

(Video) PETITE STYLE TIPS PART 2 / How To Dress When You're Short 5'4 and under!

What is the ideal length for you? 2-3 inches above your knee is perfect. That is the classic mini skirt length without looking trashy.

Pair them with tall boots in the fall and winter for an easy and fashionable look. Add a long coat when the weather gets chilly and you are good to go.

Maxi Skirts

Talking about the best skirts for petites, we have to talk about maxi skirts, even though this sounds a bit counterintuitive on the surface.

Don’t all the fashion books and stylists teach us wearing a skirt above or at the knee is best style for short women?

Yes, short skirts definitely is one of the most obvious ways to lengthen your legs and look taller than you are.However, if you do the opposite, i.e. wearing a really long skirt, it could also work very well for petite women.I am talking about maxi skirts that reach (almost) your ankles.

Is it surprising to you they are very flattering to petite women?

If you wonder why, here is the reason: petite women needs length in their style in order to look taller. Maxi skirts and skirts create that long column of colors which vertically lengthens and thus makes petite girls look taller.

Maxi dresses and maxi skirts have been trendy for almost a decade now, and they are a summer favorite of many “IT” girls. They are so easy to wear in the summer time for so many reasons.

  • If you are packing for a resort vacation or going to a beach wedding, they are probably your best bet.
  • They are so comfortable you can just throw them on and wear them and hang by the beach or the pool all day.
  • They are also very forgiving and you can save on razor time, to state the obvious.
  • For petite girls, another bonus is you can wear wedges under it and look great and feel comfortable.

In general, we advise petite women to be cautious about wearing chunky shoes such as wedges, as the bulkiness is not very flattering on a smaller frame.

(Video) STYLE TIPS FOR PETITES PART 2 | Style tips for women 5ft and under!

However, since your legs and feet are almost fully covered when wearing a maxi skirt, paring it with wedges actually balance it out and they give you an instant lift of 4 inches and all day comfort.

To avoid looking buried by the fabrics, the best style of maxi skirts for short women is the one with slit.

The best way for a short girl to wear maxi skirts is to pair it with a crop top. Doing so will double the leg lengthening effect of the maxi skirt by further shifting the focus up. Plus, since maxi skirts already have so much fabrics, a crop top will balance it out and will not make you look like being worn by the clothing.

  • If you are under 5’4, the regular size maxi skirts will probably be dragging on the floor for you.
  • To find the best maxi skirts for petite women, picking out the right length is critical.
  • You need to make sure to get it in the length that works with the shoes you have in mind.
  • Do you plan to wear it with flats? Or with heels? The best length could be quite different.

When maxi dresses and skirts first became a summer trend, they were only available in regular sizes, so the only way a short girl could pull it off was to first send it the tailors and cut off the extra inches.

After so many summers, now more and more brands (ASOS, London Times, Reformation, Anthropologie, etc) are making petite size maxi skirts at all kinds of length as well as price level, and we do not have to worry about alteration any more. Maxi skirts are available in all kinds of prints and patterns and they are normally inexpensive, so you should definitely try different colors and have fun with them. For petite girls, you should avoid maxi skirts too long and be very careful when you walk, as there is a risk of stumbling on it and fall.

Front or Side Slit

I was wearing this skirt in this picture.

Since we are on the topic of best skirts for petite women, a lot of you might ask if midi skirts are off limits. Well, it depends. Generally speaking, midi length is the hardest length for petite women to pull off.

The reason is simple- it ends at an awkward length at your calves between your knees and your ankles, so there is a big risk that your legs could look cut off.

Also, one general rule is we should want the hem to be where we want people to notice the most, because the hem draws people’s attention there. Very few people want to the focus to be on their calves! Regardless the height, it is easy for midi skirts to make your calves look bigger than they are.

(Video) BEST CLOTHING BRANDS FOR PETITES 2021 | 5' 3" & under

Does that mean petite women should stay away from midi skirts for good?

Nothing in fashion is absolute. If midi skirts have slide slit, that changes the balance point of the look and will have a totally different visual effect. When you are walking or sitting down, the side slit shows some skin of your legs, which will make your legs look longer than they are and you will not look like drowning in fabrics.

Skirts with Vertical Prints

The best skirts for petite women should have some vertical designs that draw eyes up and down and create the illusion of length for your legs. Don’t worry, that doesn’t mean you have to wear zebra prints. There are many other prints that are more subtle and achieve the same effect of lengthening.

For instance, grey stripes on navy or black background could be very flattering to short women who want their bottom half to look smaller (like the petite pear shape). When picking out prints, make sure they are not too busy or too loud. Otherwise they might make you look like drawn by the fabric.

One rule of thumb for short women to find the best patterns is to go with the “rule of fist”. That is, the print should be in proportion to your body size and should not be bigger than the size of your fist. Being proportional is key, and that does not mean petite women should all wear tiny prints.

If you are petite and skinny, sure, wear small prints by all means. If you happen to be short and curvy, then tiny prints might do the opposite for you (make you look even bigger by contrast). Going with a medium size print is your best bet. Also, this vertical preference is not restricted to just prints- you can also look for vertical designs (such as side zipper, etc) which are equally flattering for petite women.

Skirts with Asymmetric Hem

Besides the traditional silhouette of best skirts for petite women, skirts with asymmetrical hem can also work out very well on short women. It can be short hem in the front (above or at the knee) and longer hem in the back (reaching your mid calf), which looks like a mini skirt in the front and a midi skirt in the back.

This kind of skirts are fun to wear, and they can also change the proportion of a short person because of the uneven hemlines. Another example is slanted hemline with ruffles, which is similar to a vertical line design.

As mentioned earlier, any vertical line in your outfit will help to create the illusion of height, thus is great for short women. So if you have never tried uneven hems, be sure to try them on and they could be a very pleasant surprise for you.

(Read more about How can a Short Woman Rock Maxi Skirts and6 Best Fashion Tips on How to look Taller)

(Video) Midi Dresses for Short Girls- How to Make it Work on Petites

FAQs

What kind of skirt should a petite woman wear? ›

A-line skirts are on the top list of best skirts for Petites because they are universally flattering, regardless of your body type. The shape is clean and the slight flare makes your legs look more slender.

What is the best skirt length for a short person? ›

Now, if you have short calves (A is greater than B), your ideal skirt length should be kneecap minus Magic Number. Per this formula, my ideal skirt length is 2 inches above the knee. If you have long calves (A is less than B), your ideal skirt length should be kneecap plus Magic Number.

Should short girls wear long skirts? ›

Wearing a maxi skirt as a petite person is always a possibility — no matter what those silly fashion dos and don'ts rules say (spoiler: they don't mean anything at all). Just remember that altering, styling, and shrinking are always a possibility and keep on searching for your perfect skirt.

What should a petite girl wear? ›

So if you're petite your legs is one of the easiest. Ways that you can elongate your body using high

What is the height for petite? ›

In fashion and clothing, a petite size is a U.S. standard clothing size designed to fit women of a short, smaller build of height 163 cm (5 ft 4 in) or less.

Do pencil skirts look good on short girls? ›

Although it might seem as though only slim women would be able to wear a pencil skirt successfully, women who have one of the four major figure shapes, triangle, rectangle, inverted triangle, and hourglass, can all wear a pencil skirt and look good in one.

How do you style a petite body? ›

15 PETITE STYLING TIPS // How to Style a Petite Body Type - YouTube

How do you wear a skirt with short legs? ›

7 Must Know Midi Skirt Styling Tips If you have Short Legs (like me)

What dress length is best for short legs? ›

The best dress length to make short legs look longer: 2″-3″ above your knee. The most versatile length for petites: right at your knee. The ideal length to make a petite girl appear taller and leaner: ankle length.

Do midi skirts look good on petites? ›

A hi-low midi skirt is also very petite friendly! Tops: Choose a top that is fitted. Oversized tops, although so cute, can be overwhelming on a petite person. You can wear a bodysuit for a slimming effect, or tuck your top into a shapewear half slip so you get smooth lines.

Can short girls wear midi skirt? ›

We're debunking a fashion myth at Glamour today: You don't have to be taller than 5'4 to wear a midi skirt. Midlength skirts are one of our favorite spring fashion trends, and they're going to continue well into the fall.

How can short height girls look attractive? ›

The 8 Best Styling Secretes that Empower Short Girls
  1. Wear fitted clothes.
  2. Avoid low rise pants or jeans.
  3. Wear monochromatic outfits.
  4. Simplify your accessories.
  5. Wear dresses whenever you can.
  6. Wear shoes with pointed toes.
  7. Find a good tailor, or DIY at home tailoring.
  8. Pay attention to the fabrics.
29 Jun 2020

What is a petite body type? ›

WHAT IS PETITE? Petite refers to stature not weight. Most people still think petite means skinny when in fact petite has nothing to do with weight. Petite is the term used in the fashion industry to describe a woman who is 5'3 tall or under. Petite women come in all shapes and sizes, whether they're a size 4 or 14.

What kind of jeans should a short girl wear? ›

Skinny and straight-leg jeans are the number one most recommended silhouette for short girls because the way they hug the legs creates a lengthening illusion. They also make hips look narrower and legs skinnier, which in effect makes the wearer look taller.

Can short girls wear high tops? ›

Stilettos that are too high make a short woman look out of proportion, and since they also make walking difficult, stilettos that are too high can call attention to a woman's appearance, but not in a good way. Best bet for petites who want to wear stilettos well is to keep the heel height to four inches or less.

Are petite sizes smaller or just shorter? ›

When most people hear the word "petite," they assume it means "tiny." To be clear, while "petite" does mean small, in terms of clothing, it refers to a specific height size range that is made to fit those who are shorter. Keep in mind, though, that shape also plays a role in how an item of clothing will look and feel.

What leg length is petite? ›

Length/inside leg
Petite(small)75 cm (29,5 inch)
Regular(standard)79-84 cm (31-33 inch)
Tall(long)89-91,5 cm (35-36 inch)
Plus(standard)79-84 cm (31-33 inch)

How do I know if I am petite? ›

This is determined by your height and proportions. Petite women are typically 5'3 and under, with a pants inseam of 27 inches or less. There's a common misconception that being petite indicates a certain weight. This is not true – a petite size is measured solely by one's height.

How long should my skirt be for my height? ›

For an average height lady, knee-length A-Lines are the best option. They offer the perfect balance between skirt and leg.

How can I hide my belly in a pencil skirt? ›

Try a Wrap Top. If you prefer to tuck out, a wrap top or a fitted top with some stretch and ruching works well to camouflage the tummy.

What is the correct length for a pencil skirt? ›

HOW LONG SHOULD A PENCIL SKIRT BE? A classic pencil skirt should sit anywhere between the knee and mid-calf. Skirts that sit above the knee or thigh area may still come in a fitted pencil shape but are considered more of a mini skirt.

What should I wear with short and petite? ›

PETITE STYLE TIPS / How To Dress When You're Short ... - YouTube

How should a petite curvy dress? ›

10 Styling Tips for Petite and Curvy women - YouTube

How do Petites wear tunics? ›

Petite – The shorter you are, the shorter the tunic should be. Ideally, it should hit at the hip.
...
Choose a tunic that has:
  1. minimal detail/embellishment at the neckline so as not to emphasize your broad shoulders.
  2. An open neckline to soften your broad shoulders.
  3. No horizontal lines, which will make you look wider.
17 May 2016

What to wear to make legs look longer? ›

Wearing pants, jeans or a jumpsuit in the same color as your footwear creates an optical illusion that makes your legline appear longer. Matching the color of your tights and shoes (or wearing nude shoes with bare-leg looks) offers the same optical illusion.

How should I wear jeans with short legs? ›

8 Must Know Jeans Hacks if you have Short Legs (like me) - YouTube

What can I wear with a short skirt? ›

Pairing Other Clothing with a Short Skirt. Wear loose shirts or sweaters. Pair a short skirt with tops that cover more skin in loose, comfortable fabric. You can pull on some comfy sweaters for fall and winter, or keep the material light and thin for warmer weather while still feeling a little more covered up.

Is 5 4 a regular or petite? ›

What Height Is Considered Petite? Petite sizes are designed for women 5'4” and under, regardless of their size. In the petite category, sizes range from extra-small to plus-size.

How can I look taller with short legs? ›

11 Easy Ways to Look Taller Instantly (esp. if you have short legs) - YouTube

Do wide leg pants look good on short girls? ›

By now it's no secret that wide-leg pants work wonders to elongate petite legs. Opt for a pair, especially if you're wearing them with heels.

How can I make my skirt look taller? ›

How To Look Taller & Slimmer: Outfits I Wear As A Short Girl - YouTube

Can I wear a midi dress if I'm short? ›

The biggest tip for styling a midi dress if you're petite is that there are no rules. I'm focusing more today on footwear to wear with these dresses. No, you don't have to wear sky-high heels with a midi to appear taller. You can wear whatever shoes you want!

Do midi skirts make you look taller? ›

When in doubt, go for a high-waisted midi skirt! The high waistline will create the illusion of longer legs which makes you look taller. Pairing a light-coloured top with a dark midi skirt gives your figure a balanced and flattering proportion.

How long should a maxi dress be for petites? ›

As a petite woman, the ideal hemline for a maxi dress is somewhere between ankle length and the top of your foot. Where it almost looks like it could touch the ground but it won't – that's your perfect length maxi dress. So I'd say about an inch or two above the floor is a good reference point.

How long should maxi dress be for 5 3? ›

My sweet spot on maxi dresses at 5'3″ is usually around 54-56″ in total length. Be warned, many websites don't give total length and instead give the height of the model. If you're shopping a brand that offers petite sizing, definitely check out their maxi dress options!

What type of dress suits short and fat girls? ›

Try dresses that are fitted, but have layering around the stomach area, which is a clever way to camouflage extra bulk by not being baggy. Go for A-line dresses, if you are not comfortable with fitted ones or wrap around dresses.

How can I look taller in clothes? ›

Vertical prints or stripes

So any vertical stripes, seams, or prints help the eye to move from top-to-bottom of the outfit, as opposed to horizontally. This helps with appearing thinner and taller.

Is petite a compliment? ›

When you call someone petite, it's usually meant as a compliment — implying that she is dainty and adorable. Many clothing stores offer petite sizes for women who are short.

How would you describe a petite woman? ›

relating to or being a woman who is short and has a small, trim figure; diminutive: She is a petite brunette. The sash accentuates her petite waist. small; little: I usually buy frozen petite peas.

What is perfect female body shape? ›

Based on various studies, the ideal body shape is the hourglass type body shape. The amount of these qualities vary between culture and race, but as long as you hold an hourglass shape, then you have an ideal body shape. An hourglass shape has the following qualities: Shoulders smaller than the hips.

Should short girls wear bootcut? ›

Bootcut jeans are the best fit for hourglass and apple shape petite body type. They are highly recommended for short females as they are specially made for them. Dark washes or dark shades are highly suggested. High bootcut is not recommended for petite women.

What is difference between petite and short? ›

The difference between our petite and short is the rise and cut. The inseam and the cut of the pants in petite are smaller than our short for a petite person. The short is simply shorter in length and cut the same as our regular.

What kind of jeans are in style 2022? ›

The relaxed straight is a 90s throwback style, and probably the most trendy of these denim trends for fall 2022. You will also see these called loose fit, slouchy straight, dad jeans, baggy straight…

How do you wear a full skirt with petite? ›

How To Wear : A Maxi Skirt Under 5'2 - Petite or Short - YouTube

What dress length is best for short legs? ›

The best dress length to make short legs look longer: 2″-3″ above your knee. The most versatile length for petites: right at your knee. The ideal length to make a petite girl appear taller and leaner: ankle length.

How do you wear a skirt with short legs? ›

7 Must Know Midi Skirt Styling Tips If you have Short Legs (like me)

Do midi skirts look good on petites? ›

A hi-low midi skirt is also very petite friendly! Tops: Choose a top that is fitted. Oversized tops, although so cute, can be overwhelming on a petite person. You can wear a bodysuit for a slimming effect, or tuck your top into a shapewear half slip so you get smooth lines.

Do pencil skirts look good on short girls? ›

Although it might seem as though only slim women would be able to wear a pencil skirt successfully, women who have one of the four major figure shapes, triangle, rectangle, inverted triangle, and hourglass, can all wear a pencil skirt and look good in one.

How long should my skirt be for my height? ›

For an average height lady, knee-length A-Lines are the best option. They offer the perfect balance between skirt and leg.

How do you wear a midi skirt with petite? ›

How To Style: Midi Skirts For *PETITES* / PETITE ... - YouTube

How can short height girls look attractive? ›

The 8 Best Styling Secretes that Empower Short Girls
  1. Wear fitted clothes.
  2. Avoid low rise pants or jeans.
  3. Wear monochromatic outfits.
  4. Simplify your accessories.
  5. Wear dresses whenever you can.
  6. Wear shoes with pointed toes.
  7. Find a good tailor, or DIY at home tailoring.
  8. Pay attention to the fabrics.
29 Jun 2020

What type of jeans should a short girl wear? ›

Skinny and straight-leg jeans are the number one most recommended silhouette for short girls because the way they hug the legs creates a lengthening illusion. They also make hips look narrower and legs skinnier, which in effect makes the wearer look taller.

How do you style a petite body? ›

15 PETITE STYLING TIPS // How to Style a Petite Body Type - YouTube

What to wear to make legs look longer? ›

Wearing pants, jeans or a jumpsuit in the same color as your footwear creates an optical illusion that makes your legline appear longer. Matching the color of your tights and shoes (or wearing nude shoes with bare-leg looks) offers the same optical illusion.

How do you dress when you're short? ›

PETITE STYLE TIPS: How To Dress When You're Short ... - YouTube

How can I make my skirt look taller? ›

How To Look Taller & Slimmer: Outfits I Wear As A Short Girl - YouTube

How should a petite curvy dress? ›

10 Styling Tips for Petite and Curvy women - YouTube

Videos

1. Petite Fashion Tips- Summer Staple for Short Women
(Petite Dressing)
2. Clothing I Don’t Wear As A Petite | Clothing Items Petite Girls Should Avoid
(Thessely Juliet)
3. 10 Petite Style Secrets That I Use to Look Taller and Leaner (Fashion Over 40 & Over 50)
(Busbee Style)
4. Have short legs? These are the 5 must have shorts
(Petite Dressing)
5. How To Style White Sneakers On A Petite Body Type! Tips, Tricks & Outfit Ideas!
(Elana Kinda)
6. SKIRTS for the "BODY TYPES"
(Aly Art)

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