Winter may be on its way out (thank goodness!) but nevertheless a good coat remains an all-year-round fashion essential and a solid investment. Picking the best style of coat to flatter your body shape may seem like a minefield but it’s actually very simple; it’s all about balance. There are four main distinctive body types that most of us can identify with: Straight/Rectangle: Your hips are roughly the same width as your bust with only a slightly smaller waist Pear: Your hips are wider than your bust, with your waist sloping outwards to your hips Hourglass: Like the straight shape, your hips and bust are roughly the same width but your waist is much more defined Apple: You have rounded shoulders, wide hips and a full waist, giving your top half a rounded 'apple-like' appearance So, if you are slim and rectangle-shaped, you can pick a coat with plenty of body to enhance your figure or, if you’re an apple shape, you can balance out your bottom half with a belted waist and flared coat skirt. Our MYA girls have teamed up with some of the best fashion and beauty bloggers to give us their top tips on which types of coats they would choose for our lovely body shapes.

Pear Body Shape - Military Coat

[caption id="attachment_10244" align="alignnone" width="640"]double-breasted-coat-2-mango Credit: Mango.com[/caption] Starting with the Pear shape, our MYA girls have recommended a good double breasted or military style coat to help flatter a wider lower half. A double breasted coat creates extra detail that draws the eye to the top half of the body and balances out the lower half. Military-inspired coat styles with large button detail on the top half are also great for achieving the same effect, plus they look fabulous and are on trend this season. Go for the longer styles of these coats to skim over your bottom half and create a more streamlined look.

Hourglass Body Shape - Wraparound

[caption id="attachment_10247" align="aligncenter" width="640"]wraparound coat mango Credit: Mango.com[/caption] Our next tip comes from top London fashion and beauty blogger, Lela London. She says: "I have a stereotypical hourglass shape - heavy on the top and bottom. To put it simply: shapeless styles make me look far too shapely. A good 50+ lbs shapelier than I actually am! Knowing this, I try to cinch everything in at the waist (my smallest point) and adore wraparound coats for this very reason. You need something that moves with your shape when you have curves on board!"  

Apple Shape - Flared skirt coat

[caption id="attachment_10245" align="aligncenter" width="640"]fit-and-flare-coat-asos Credit: Asos.com[/caption] Fashion and lifestyle blogger Victoria over at Victoria’s Vintage says: “I always prefer coats with a flared skirt and cinched-in middle as I think this helps to give me shape around the waist and it looks extra girly! I tend to wear a lot of dresses and I feel that this style is perfect to wear over the top of a dress with cosy tights and heeled ankle boots, especially if you have an apple-like body shape.”  

Straight Figure - Poncho

[caption id="attachment_10248" align="aligncenter" width="640"]poncho-asos Credit: Asos.com[/caption] Next up is style blogger Megan from Sweet Sauce Blog who says: “For the straight figure: The new Poncho-style coat should be your cold weather friend. Ponchos will add curves and are very 70's boho-chic which is totally in right now. You can buy a poncho style coat with a built-in belt or you can pair it with any other chunky vintage belt you have to hand. Wear a long-sleeve tunic or sweater and throw on some gloves to adjust to the temperature. Your comfy leggings and flats will pair nicely for a chic look, or pull out your flared jeans and chunky heels to add some extra feminine edge (and height!). Be sure to tie your belt at the smallest point of your waste to elongate your legs and accentuate your curves.”  

All body types – Longline Trench Coat

[caption id="attachment_10246" align="aligncenter" width="640"]longline-trench-coat-missguided Credit: MIssguided.com[/caption] Last but not least we have Erica from Fashionlush who has the perfect coat for all body types: "When it comes to coats, I love a good longline trench/jacket. It's the kind of coat you can throw on with any look for that instant wow factor. These longline jacket styles are flattering on all body types and can be worn a ton of different ways - layered over skinny jeans & a tee, paired with sleek trousers, or you can even wear one over a dress. “I also love a good motorcycle leather jacket, it's an edgy classic & also works great for all body types, although be wary of where the bottom of the jacket hits. If you have a short torso, you may want to opt for a longer leather jacket, while longer torsos can get away just fine with a cropped version!"   Armed with this new style knowledge you can now hit the streets with bags of extra confidence. So step outside and brave the last of the winter weather knowing that you look absolutely on point in your expertly chosen coat. A huge thanks to all our fabulous bloggers for their useful tips too!