How to Make Your Arms Look Thinner in a Dress

Slimmer arms are just a few style tricks away!

Celebs and stylists know the secrets to making arms appear thinner: it’s all about wearing the right clothes, accessories and even contouring with tanner and makeup. If you don’t have time to tone up before your big formal, these style tricks are a life-saver. Slimmer arms, here you come: 

01
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Try a v-neck dress with wider straps.

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Brian Ach/Getty Image Entertainment

A v-neck dress will accentuate your collarbone and décolletage and draw attention away from any upper arm flab that you want to hide. This is a very flattering cut on most teens and women. Be sure that the straps fit and are not so loose that they’re digging into you- that will only create unwanted bulge. 

02
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Try a dress with loose-fitting cap sleeves.

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Brian Ach/Getty Images Entertainment

 Hide your shoulders and upper arms with a sleeve. It can be a small cap sleeve or a longer three-quarter sleeve, anything that will hide the tops of your arms will do. Just make sure it’s not too tight. Getting slimmer-looking arms is all about the right fit, and anything that cuts into your skin will only make you appear heavier.  

03
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Try a high-necked dress that exposes your shoulders.

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Beyonce in Lanvin Maxi Dress. Getty Images

This may seem counter-intuitive. After all, you want to hide your arms instead of exposing them. However, this is a bit of an illusion trick. If you pick a dress with a gorgeous, ornate high-neck, all the attention will be drawn up towards your face instead of your arms. Plus, you’ll be exposing your shoulder line in a flattering way. Suddenly, your arms aren’t the focus. If you still need an extra confidence booster, you can always…

04
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Get contour-tanned.

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Spray tan. Image Source/Digital Vision/Getty Images

You’ll want to go to a reputable spray-tanning place for this trick, so either ask your friends for recommendations or get a test-tan before your big day to make sure they can deliver. But yes, it’s possible to get a spray tan that will make your arms look thinner! It’s all about the contouring. You can also… 

05
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Contour your arms with makeup.

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Tetra Images/Getty Images

Flex your arm, then use a bronzer or self-tanner to lightly outline your biceps and triceps. Less is more, so start with a small amount of product and add onto it as needed. There are all sorts of body makeup products to help with this. 

06
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Wear a long-sleeved dress.

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Brian Ach/Getty Images Entertainment

 Not all formal dresses have to be sleeveless. Long-sleeved formal dresses are gorgeous, on-trend and will totally make your arms look thinner just by hiding them. They come in all sorts of styles. Sequined or sheer are my favorites. 

07
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Wear loose-fitting bracelets and avoid cuffs.

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Getting slimmer-looking arms is about more than just sleeves. Loose-fitting bracelets like bangles will help your arms look thin by creating a gap between them and your skin. Avoid tight-fitting bracelets and arm cuffs. Anything that clamps down on your arms and makes the skin bulge out will not help your cause.  

08
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Avoid strapless dresses that push everything up.

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David's Bridal

Strapless dresses will not help your arms look thinner. They have a tendency to push everything up, and that includes the skin underneath and around your armpits. Your arms will bulge out and can even look bulkier than they actually are.  

09
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Avoid thin straps and spaghetti straps.

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Natalia Campbell/NC Photography/Getty Images

A thin strap will only make the rest of you look wider… especially a thin strap that cuts into your shoulder. 

10
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Make sure your dress fits correctly.

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Hans Neleman/Digital Vision/Getty Images

The real secret to slimming down any body part: fit. You always want to dress for your body's shape. Pay no attention to what the size is labeled as; all that matters is how your body looks when you put it on. A well-fitting dress should properly accentuate any figure.