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How To: Find Your Body Type Using Kitchener + Kibbe Style Essences

Non

Non

I have been exploring the Kibbe system of body and essence typing. The key component is this system is the Kibbe Body Types Test.

This system aims to help people discover their best style- the style that naturally suits their natural lines- by identifying their particular mix of yang (masculine) and yin (feminine) within their body composition (bones, flesh, facial features).

Added to the physical body, there are also the essences that each body type seems to embody or convey. Kibbe’s system has five pure essences: Dramatic, Natural, Classic, Gamine, and Romantic. Kitchener’s system adds two more essences to this list, Ingénue and Ethereal.

 

In this post, I’ll be doing a visual process of elimination to see which of these seven essences I have by seeing how I look in their characteristic lines and styles. Most importantly, I’ll be looking to see if I can bring to life or animate these essences. To see if I look believable and at home in them.

Let’s begin:

 

1. Dramatic

Kibbe Dramatic Essence

The Dramatic Kibbe body type is characterized by long and lean lines, picture a long, thin rectangle with sharp edges. This gives an elongated, masculine, and powerful appearance. Dramatic clothing lines are long and sharp and fabrics are stiff, creating an altogether sleek, sculpted, and elongated look.

 

Related: Kibbe Dramatic Style Analysis: Tilda Swinton

 

The Dramatic essence is powerful. They may come off as intimidating and domineering. They give off a ‘straight to business’ vibe. Here’s me projecting this essence:

What makes these outfits ‘Dramatic’ is the crisp tailoring, the deep color, and the sharp edges. A suit (my husband’s) is about the most ‘Dramatic’ outfit one can put on, as their strong yang essence shines in menswear and actually highlights their femininity. The sharp red coat is great for emphasizing the vertical line.

I am quite surprised at how much I love these lines on me. I feel powerful in these outfits.

 

Do I have this Essence? Yes, at least a little bit. I look great in the lines, but I don’t fully connect with the assertive and intensely powerful spirit that I understand the pure Dramatic essence to embody. But I animate it so well in these images that I think I must have it at least a little bit.

Verdict:, I may have a Dramatic Body Type as well as a bit of the essence.

 

2. Natural

Kibbe Natural Essence

The Natural body type is defined by soft yang and is the overall combination of a slightly broad and angular structure, with a defined musculature- think of an athlete. Natural clothing lines are long but wide, and with blunt edges (not sharp). This creates an altogether relaxed, straight, and unconstructed silhouette that allows for easy movement.

 

Related: Flamboyant Natural Style Analysis: Gigi Hadid

 

The Natural essence is easy-going, down-to-earth, and fresh. It embodies an open spirit. Naturals give off a ‘girl-next door’ vibe. Here’s me projecting this essence:

What makes these outfits ‘Natural’ is the loose fits, the gentle colors, the textured fabrics, and the overall easy-going feel. Loungewear is just about the most ‘Natural’ ensemble there is.

These lines look good on me and I feel relaxed, comfortable, and like myself in them.

Verdict- I definitely have the Natural essence. I embody everything I believe it to be. I explored this essence in further detail here.

 

3. Classic

Kibbe Classic Essence

The Kibbe Classic body type is defined by a perfect (blended) balance between yin and yang and the overall look created is smooth and symmetrical with even edges- not a hair out of place. Classic clothing lines are soft, straight lines or smoothly curved lines – softly tailored or slightly flowing.

The Classic essence is timeless, reserved, sophisticated, and polished. Classics give off a traditional ‘old money’ vibe. I also think of them as ‘prim and proper’ and buttoned up. Here’s me projecting this essence:

 

What makes this outfit ‘Classic’ is the tailoring and color scheme and pieces that feel (mostly) somewhat classic. The outfit is a color-matched (shoes and top) and formal ensemble that has that ‘work clothes’ vibe typical of the Classic body type.

I think I look basic in classic lines, I don’t think they do anything particularly special for me.

 

Do I have this essence? No. I don’t consider myself to be overly polished or traditional and ‘proper’- all of which are traits I associate with the Classic essence.

Verdict: I don’t think I have a Classic essence.

 

4. Romantic

Kibbe Romantic Essence

The Romantic Kibbe body type is defined by lush yin and characterized by roundness and curves, think of Bunny Rabbit. Romantic clothing lines should emphasize their full hourglass figure, and the overall shape of their clothing should be round and soft. Luxurious fabrics and feminine details (ruffles, lace, ruching) are ideal.

The Romantic essence is magnetic, sensual, and luxurious. Romantics give off a sexy ‘come and get it vibe’. Here’s me projecting this essence:

 

What makes these outfits ‘Romantic’ is the sensual feel of both the lace wedding dress as well as the black ensemble. The figure-hugging nature of both outfits add to their romantic feel.

These are not my best lines. The first outfit works because of the long vertical line, but the delicacy and smallness of the lace contrasts against and highlights my strength (in a way I like). The second outfit is more flattering, I think because it lacks the dainty details and has a Dramatic undercurrent.

 

Do I have this essence? While these are not my lines, I look and feel sexy in these items. They don’t feel awkward or completely separate from me.

Verdict: Interestingly, I don’t have a Romantic Body Type, but I think I have some (non-dominant and non-overt) Romantic essence.

 

5. Ingénue

Kitchener Ingenue Essence

The Ingénue style essence invokes princess energy and has a look that is girlish, innocent, and sweet, think barbie at prom. Ingenue clothing lines are large, rounded with delicate, ornate, and often childish detailing. Ingénue is distinguished from Romantic in that it’s feminine but not overtly sexy.

The Ingénue essence is cute, innocent, sweet, and girlish. They give off a ‘Baby doll’ vibe. Here’s me projecting this essence:

 

What makes this outfit ‘Ingénue’ is the length of the dress, the flair of the skirt, and the floral print. The pastel print also works to create an overall cute essence.

These are definitely not my lines. I look and feel awkward in this dress and it looks like I stole a little girl’s dress lol. The ultra-girlish elements feel juxtaposed to my physicality and highlight my strength- but this time in a way I don’t like.

 

Do I have this essence? No. I’m not a girly girl or overly delicate in the way I understand this essence to call for.

Verdict: I don’t have the Ingenue essence.

 

6. Gamine

Kibbe Gamine Essence

The Gamine body type is defined by an even yet seemingly random combination of yin and yang opposites. This creates an overall very youthful and energetic appearance. Gamine clothing lines are short and sharp, and are always striving for a staccato effect. Silhouettes should be fitted and compact with waist emphasis. Graphic elements and color usage that adds to their fun vibe are ideal.

 

Related: Flamboyant Gamine Style Analysis: Zoe Kravitz

 

The Gamine essence is energetic, youthful, and mischievous. They give off a rebellious yet fun ‘I make my own rules’ vibe. Here’s me projecting this essence:

What makes these outfits ‘Gamine’ is the cropped, boxy jacket, the boyish shoes, the turtleneck, and color blocking- all of which work to create a staccato effect. The detailing of the rolled-up sleeves and exposed ankles is also decidedly Gamine.

These are not my lines. I look childish in a full Gamine ensemble, it feels a bit ‘busy’ for me. That said, I think because of my strong yang presence, some aspects of FG work well on me (when done in the right proportion).

 

Do I have this essence? No, I do not consider myself to be highly energetic, overly fun, or like a ball of dynamite. I’m kinda the opposite lol.

Verdict: I don’t have a Flamboyant Gamine essence.

 

7. Ethereal

Kitchener Ethereal Essence

The Ethereal essence is clearly feminine but otherworldly instead of overtly sexy (like Romantics) or sweetly innocent (like Ingenues). It is often called Angelic. Ethereal lines are long and flowing, anything that adds to the sense of flying or floating away (as angels would). The materials are light and shimmery, yet the overall feel is powerful.

The Ethereal essence is feminine, mature, and powerful. It’s otherworldly and almost angelic-like. Ethereals give off a majestic, and slightly frosty ‘out of this world’ vibe. Here’s me projecting this essence:

 

What makes these outfits ‘Ethereal’ is the lightweight fabric that invokes a feeling of flying away. The whimsical design and soft colors also add to this otherworldly feel.

I think these are some of my best lines. I look great in this. I feel like I could be an ancient queen. But while the lines look great, I don’t think I animate the essence.

 

Do I have this essence? No. In my mind, I come from another time and place so I would love to have this essence, but I don’t think that I actually do. I’m sad.

Verdict: I don’t have an Ethereal Essence.

 

Note: I originally wrote this post almost a year ago and I then concluded that I did have Ethereal essence, but I think I wanted it to be true more than it was.

Plus, that was at the start of my body and essence types journey, so I hadn’t trained my eye to see and understand body and essence harmony as I do now.

 

Conclusion

This was very interesting. Considering the five Kibbe essences of each body type as well as the two additional Kitchener essences has allowed me to explore past the recommended clothing lines for each body type to engage with them more deeply.

I have concluded that I definitely have the following essences: Natural, Dramatic, and Romantic. However, I do not have them in equal parts. If I had to, I’d say the most dominant are Natural, followed by Dramatic, then Romantic.

I think this process was illuminating. I look forward to exploring this further as well as blending all of my essences in the appropriate portions to see if that creates my most harmonious looks.

 

Do you agree with my findings and have you found your essences? Please let me know!

Happy styling,

Non

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10 thoughts on “How To: Find Your Body Type Using Kitchener + Kibbe Style Essences”

    1. Thanks for your comment, Dorothy! I can honestly say I never considered that. I know I have big eyes, so I agree with you there, but neither the Gamine or Ingenue essence ever seemed to fit with me. Gamine feels too busy and Ingenue feels too girlish, both feel too youthful. But I’m forever intrigued by how we can all perceive each other so differently. 🙂

  1. You are Flamboyant Natural – Flamboyant is the dramatic part of your essence – so you are right that you are Natural with some dramatic.

    Natural:
    muscular shoulders, broad: nose, lips, far apart eyes.

    Flamboyant:
    pointed chin (you can see it when you smile, romantic would be round) – you suit pointed neckline (not round), you suit dreadlocks, your vertical line is long – suits long dress = monochromatic outfit.

    1. Thanks for you comment, Petra. I agree with you and it’s always nice when someone can confirm what we see in ourselves. 🙂 Thank you!

  2. I absolutely see Ethereal, but your hairstyle is conflicting with the dress (too round and restrained), and I think it’s throwing off the vibe. Either free and loose or the twists like you have in your Natural test outfit would work well. Possibly more Ethereal than Natural. Definitely agree with Dramatic and Romantic!!

    1. Noooo…don’t confuse me more lol. Thanks for your comment, I hadn’t considered the effect of hair in that particular image but I’ll look at it again with some fresh eyes. 🙂

  3. This was so helpful, thank you! Also I absolutely see Ethereal essence in you! (It actually seems much stronger than Romantic to me.) “Ancient queen” is the perfect description of you in that dress—regal and from another realm. The dress just looks like what you’re “supposed” to be wearing if that makes sense, lol. And I think it’s telling that you connect so strongly to this essence internally 🙂

    1. Thanks, Rue! I’m so glad this was helpful. OMG, you made my day- I don’t think you understand how badly I want to be Ethereal lol. It’s why I don’t trust myself to be objective anymore, so hearing it from a non-biased source makes me feel like maybe there really is something there…🤞🏽

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