Crop tops are undeniably one of the biggest fashion trends right now. Fun and sexy, a crop top can also exude elegance and class. Worn a slightly different way, the same top can also look downright trashy.
It comes down to styling. If you want to keep your look from venturing into sketchy territory, heed these important crop top styling tips.
1. Say No to Low
The super low-rise jean trend of the early 2000’s hit us like a truckload of frat boys descending on the local 7-Eleven for their midnight Slurpee fix. Most of us thank God its popularity has waned, if not altogether died. Paired with the inevitable crop top, not only did this trend have us core training like crazy and giving just about everyone ample views of our underwear, but it also smacked of a certain lack of polish and – dare I say it? – refinement. (And apparently, low rise jeans are also bad for our health.)
Face it: showing off your g-string and butt crack for the world to see doesn’t exactly smack of class. This is why it’s great that higher rise pants are back in. Not to be confused with the dreaded “Mum jeans”, which are an insult to stylish Mums everywhere, high-rise jeans are sleek, fitted and far from frumpy – and they look killer with a crop top, offering just a peek of skin. (Bonus: if your waist area isn’t exactly a washboard, then high-rise jeans also allow you to sport a crop while concealing a myriad of sins.)
2. Pencil Skirts
With their waist resting on your natural waistline (i.e. about two finger widths above your belly button), pencils skirts look nothing short of chic with a crop top. You can aim for a tighter fit or looser fit of the top and still rock this look.
Tip: Look to mix textures. Pair a cotton tee top with a leather pencil skirt, or an eyelet pencil skirt with a flowing silk crop. Just because a pencil skirt is a little more formal looking than your basic A-line doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, and still look put-together.
3. Buy the Right Size
This may seem obvious, but when it comes to crops, keeping it classy is also about making sure you keep your shirt in place. You don’t want side or underboob ruining your smart look. Be sure to raise your hands, twist, turn and bend to make sure you know what your top may be at risk of exposing.
4. Go to Lengths
Crop tops come in different lengths: if you are wearing lower waisted bottoms, aim for a longer top. The most elegant look will reveal a peep of skin: not the whole shebang from hip bone to rib five. If class is what you’re aiming for, then the less skin you show, the better.
5. Wear a Bra
Related to point #3, crop tops are already covering less than the average shirt, so you want to make sure you have the support and structure you need to keep your visage chic. You may opt to wear (or need to wear) a strapless bra, or even a bandeau, but make sure your girls are reigned in properly.
6. Know When to Hold Out
There are certain situations where a crop top is almost never appropriate. At a professional office, for instance. In court. In most places of worship. If you have to think about whether or not you should wear this top to a certain event or place, then chances are, you shouldn’t.
Now go forth, and rock your crop with peace of mind that you don’t look you’re trying to revive Christina Aguilera circa 2001. You’ve got this.