Style Guide: Understanding Different Prom Dress Types

There are a variety of prom dress types out there, and choosing the style that fits you best might seem like a momentous task when you start searching for your prom dress.

Our style guide is here to help you understand the popular prom dress types and give you an idea of which specific figure these dresses might flatter. Review our selection of different prom dresses below to get your search for the perfect gown started.

Should I Choose a Dress Based on My Body Type?

When it comes to choosing a prom dress, you want to find one that flatters your figure and helps you feel your most confident throughout prom, as well as a dress that lets your personality shine.

Review the styles below, and keep in mind your natural features as you decide which dress you would like to wear best. You can review our tips on dressing for your body type here to learn what might be the most flattering for your figure.

A-Line Dresses

prom dress body type

Suitable for most body types, the A-line dress is a popular prom dress style. This style is defined by a more fitted gown that highlights the bust and waist, flaring out into a skirt around the hips. A-line dresses might have more full skirts, or they could have flowing simple fabrics.

A-line dresses are found in both long and short lengths, and this style works with a variety of necklines, making them very versatile.

Ball Gowns

prom dress body type
Style 54277 in Ivory is a great choice.

Ball gowns are flattering for many individuals, and there is nothing better to wear to prom than a full-skirted gown that lets you feel like a princess.

Ball gowns tend to have a more form-fitting bodice area, and necklines vary on this prom dress type. The main defining feature of a ball gown is the full skirts that start from around the waist or hips, and the layers of fabric that make up these skirts.

Strapless Dresses

prom dress body type

Strapless dresses, especially ones that flow or have unique embellishments to the back, are an ever-popular prom dress style.

Individuals with pear-shaped bodies may find this silhouette particularly flattering. The strapless neckline brings attention to the bust, while full skirts give a balanced appearance to the waist.

Eye-Catching Necklines

prom dress body type

Eye-catching necklines are fantastic on virtually every body shape, but they are particularly suited for the inverted triangle body shape or individuals that have a larger bust.

Deep V-necklines can highlight the bustline and shoulders, or you can opt for an off-the-shoulder look for a hint of elegance. You may also find necklines with embroidery and sweetheart necklines to be flattering for your natural features and great to pair with unique pieces of jewelry.

Mermaid Dresses

prom dress body type

Mermaid-style dresses are those that hug the body throughout the torso and hips, flaring out around the calves or ankles. Some mermaid dresses are shorter and flare out around the knees, but you can expect these dresses to be fairly formfitting and body-hugging.

Mermaid-style dresses tend to flatter hourglass figures the most, and they can be found with a number of unique embellishments such as beading, ruffles, and sequins.

Slip Dresses

Slip dresses are typically made from a thinner fabric. While they may be more figure-hugging at the top where the bodice is, they tend to fall loosely starting at the waist or around the hips.

Slip dresses are typically long and made from flowing materials, and they are a great choice if you want a classic, simple prom dress style. This dress tends to flatter every body shape.

Navigating the Different Types of Prom Dresses

There are plenty of different types of prom dresses out there today, and choosing between all of the available styles can be stressful. Our guide is here to help introduce the different prom dress types available and give you an idea of which gown will best flatter your figure.

Complete your prom dress with accessories, a great pair of shoes, and stunning hair and makeup to look your best during prom.