Part of my job here at People includes interviewing celebrity stylists about how they create stunning, memorable red carpet moments. While many tell me it’s the right dress on the right person at the right carpet (on many occasions, in those exact words), I’ve discovered that there is one other trick they have come to rely on time after time: Body shapers.
Nearly every major celebrity stylist has told me that looking all smoothed out is the true secret to creating a remarkable red carpet look and ensuring their clients feel confident, despite the obvious trade-off of being smushed in tight. This is true of any star they work with, too, regardless of age or body size—even stars as petite and short as me.
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I can’t help but agree with these glam creatives: I, too, believe that fashion can build confidence for anyone, no matter who you are age-wise or size-wise. That’s why I love doing what I do—shining the spotlight on people who feel amazing while looking amazing and inspire others to feel and look amazing in the process. Because as we all know, there’s something about that feeling you get when you know you’re wearing an outfit you can kickass in. Or deliver a presentation in. Or, for me, interview a celebrity in. If covering the red carpet has taught me anything, it’s that confidence is a visible quality when you have it. And if smoothing everything out just right can help you get it, then why not go for it.
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So with this in mind, I decided to take this red carpet advice up a notch and wear smoothers not on the inside, but on the outside with Spanx’s clothing line. The Atlanta-based brand launched their apparel selection a few years ago, but expanded it recently in the fall to encompass skirts, jackets and more. I spent a week wearing the new additions, such as jeans, jackets, and skirts, which are available in sizes XS to 3X and some, even a range of petite sizing. The most common reaction I got? “Those are Spanx? Really?” Yes. And yes. Below, the best pieces from the trial.
The Skater Skirt (New addition to the Spanx apparel line)
I kicked off the week in the Faux Leather Skater Skirt. This was a surprise win for me: It is incredibly lightweight (emphasis on the lightweight) and comfortable (it’s zipper-less, which made it way more comfortable than other skater skirts). It did not move throughout the day despite it being a pull-on style, and it did not wrinkle, even when I purposely tried crinkling it. Plus, the glossy stretch fabric gave it the appearance of faux leather. I was impressed!
Buy It! Spanx Faux Leather Skater Skirt, $98; spanx.com
The Distressed Skinny Jeans (New addition to the Spanx apparel line)
There’s no B.S.-ing this—this distressed denim style is a pair of glorified jeggings. And guess what? It was fabulous. No zipper? Who cares. You can cover up that fact with a longer top or sweater. This pull-up style fit just above the waist, which minimizes muffin top potential, and the super-stretch material (a mix of cotton, recyclable tencel, polyester and spandex) maintained its stretch all day long.
Buy It! Spanx Distressed Skinny Jeans, $128 to $132; nordstrom.com – and they’re also available in black
The Faux Leather Leggings (Petite sizing is a new addition to the Spanx apparel line)
These leggings have become a cult favorite because they are crazy comfy and crazy flattering. The high waistband tucks everything in without being too tight, and they have just enough spandex to keep them curve-hugging, while not revealing every single crease. Now, they launched a petite version for shorter women—perfect for a 5-foot-tall person like myself—so they finally fit the way they were meant to. Thrilling.
Buy It! Spanx Faux Leather Leggings, $98 to $102; nordstrom.com
How I Wore the Pieces
From left: The Skater Skirt, the Distressed Denim and the Petite Faux Leggings.
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