For as long as I can remember, I’ve been one of the shortest people I know. Seriously — even children enjoy pointing out that they’re swiftly approaching my height, which, in all fairness, leans more toward 4’11 than 5’0. While being short comes with its perks (you always have a case for being front and center in every group photo), there’s a downside — especially when it comes to clothing. On top of having to tuck, hem, or roll almost every pair of pants, midi dresses tend to cut me off and turn my legs into stumps. I’ve also noticed that, depending on color and length, certain shoes have the same effect.
For the past few years, however, I’ve sworn that white boots and sneakers make me look taller. Perhaps it’s because they’re a classic, neutral color, or the fact that they pop and brighten up any outfit (as opposed to darker alternatives, which often do the opposite) but they weirdly lengthen my legs. I’ve tested out this theory when styling photo shoots, and, even when I’m trying not to, I end up reaching for a crisp white shoe when dressing petite women The trick works even better when said shoe is slim and snug around the foot or ankle — something like Vans slip-ons, Converse Chuck Taylors, or zip-up, sock-like booties — and also includes a subtle platform (for obvious, height-boosting reasons). It’s details like these that help to create a seamless, uncut line, which is the ultimate goal when aiming to look taller.
On days when white shoes won’t do, I find myself reaching for metallics instead, which work a similar type of magic (in my book, they do qualify as a neutral), or rely on something closer to my skin-tone, a.k.a. a trick that has been around for years.