Kibbe’s 13 vs. these 7…

Kibbe’s 13 vs. these 7…

A while ago I looked into the Kibbe system to see if I could learn anything from it. I did learn some, but nothing that helped me; I have a yin body but a lot of yang in my face, and Kibbe didn’t have much to say about that.

Then I looked around some more and found the “Truth is Beauty” system, which builds on Kibbe but allows for one type of face and another type of body. There are [seven style identities] ( Dramatic, Natural, Gamine, Classic, Ingenue, Romantic, and Ethereal. There are also blends of two or three identities.

(There’s also mention of [things you can do if you don’t like your style identity] ( My favorite is #4: F it! Rachel says dress for face not body, but I’m not about that Natural life.)

Has anybody tried this system? How much has it helped you? Should I forget I ever read this website?

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Comments ( 12 )
  1. exmechanistic
    April 30, 2018 at 7:12 pm

    > Should I forget I ever read this website?


  2. bexcellent101
    April 30, 2018 at 7:14 pm

    Honestly I think they are all crap. Anyone can adapt any style they choose, it’s just a matter of getting the details right. It doesn’t matter if you have “chiseled perfection” or “sensuous mouths, smoldering eyes.”

    Also, sooooooo many of the celeb examples directly contradict the advice. Like the [Ingenue]( page that gives Lupita as an example and then says “they look silly — like a kid playing dress-up — in anything “sexy” or womanly, such as elaborate jewelry or a plunging neckline.” Girlfriend has never met a plunging neckline she didn’t love, and she looked AMAZING on the Black Panther poledance rocking elaborate, sexy looks.

  3. mallutts
    April 30, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    I don’t think the style of clothes you wear is as important as learning proportions and what colors look best on you. I remember looking at this and since I’m under 5’4″ I was automatically put in Gamine or Ingenue, don’t remember which one it was, with no other option just because I’m petite? Most days I try to wear a color that doesn’t make me look like death and something that doesn’t look too much like a sack. haha

  4. definitely_at_work_
    April 30, 2018 at 7:32 pm

    I’m the kind of person who thinks these systems fall into the realm of things like personality tests and astrology, in that they should be treated as novelty rather than truth. If you think it’s fun and interesting and it resonates with you and makes fashion more enjoyable then absolutely go for it!

    But I also don’t think there’s any actual knowledge that you’re missing if you never look into it, or if you don’t abide by the system. At the end of the day, it’s just a categorization that someone made up. Not that it can’t be useful! If it’s a fun thought experiment and you like the system, then by all means take it into consideration. But also don’t stress over figuring out or conforming to your type or your style identity, because it’s all arbitrary.

    Now, that said, I do love me some novelty non-scientific categorization and style typing on occasion! I have wasted countless hours on the Truth is Beauty site, haha.

  5. tyrannosaurusregina
    April 30, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    If you find a particular taxonomy useful to you, then use it. If it doesn’t feel “right” to you, ignore it. They’re all just opinions.

  6. ACosmicOlive
    April 30, 2018 at 9:13 pm

    I don’t know… I sort of hate how these systems take something that should be personal and turn it into a half ass mathematic formula. I mean, If we are going to be turning something artistic into a science I would much rather do so with long drawn out equations that require me to take a slew of body measurements and make me feel like I’m taking a course in advanced statistics.

    Style=(log)bust measurements+((log)leg length + (log)calve width)^2) / (log) ass curvature + (log) ass depth / Waist circumference… ect ect

  7. Susccmmp
    April 30, 2018 at 9:14 pm

    I feel like they’re trying to define style by your cheekbones which makes no sense.

  8. the-roaring-girl
    April 30, 2018 at 10:42 pm

    Personally, I love Kibbe and it’s been so influential for my own style but I while think there’s a lot of truth in it, it’s not the final say in fashion.

  9. lumenphosphor
    May 1, 2018 at 4:57 am

    Oh hello again!! We have much in common, as I also took a look at the Kibbe System stuff when it was wandering around last time—my answers were also not exactly typable. I also have a very yang face (prominent aquiline nose, heavier brows, squarish jaw) but my body is very yin–like super hourglass, tiny hands and feet (but they’re long hands so they didn’t fit in any of the “what do your hands look like answers” because I have the smallest hands of all my friends but my fingers are kind of spindly).

    It appeared as though I was a “theatrical romantic” at best. Okay cool: so what does it say I should wear. Oh! It’s the exact opposite of things that I like!! Fits and cuts that I’m not inherently into and loads and loads of frills! Great.

    It’s fair that I might look “my best” in these–***if and only if*** “my best” is defined as “most conventionally attractive [maybee???] to a straight man**”. Obviously my hourglass figure gets shown off when I nip things in at the waist, but…[I](,c_limit/fashion-2013-07-esther-quek-street-style-white-suit-main.jpg) [want]( [to]( [look]( [like]( [Esther]( [Quek]( I think I succeed in doing this (though I don’t have her “gamine” [probably??] body type *at all*) because there are days where people have told me I look “dapper”, or “dashing”.

    If I’m not trying to look vaguely androgynous I’m wearing shapeless oversized fuzzy sweaters that make hit my body only at its widest points. I should look the “most unattractive” in these outfits actually, because there is no waist definition at all, but I actually feel like I still pull off the *idea* of [this](–sweater-skirt-oversized-sweaters.jpg).

    When I *do* (and this is the most rare thing ever) wear tight fitting outfits, they are deeply minimal, all one color and very very sharp in terms of cut and style. My favourite dress in this category looks the most like [this.](–sexy-fashion-style-fashion-styles.jpg)

    All of these outfits that I have/try to emulate are **completely not recommended** for my body type. But–and maybe someday I’ll take pictures of myself to prove it–I truly think I look incredible in these outfits. But I don’t know if I look “conventionally” attractive.

    I can see how a pencil skirt and a top or a bodycon dress or those frilly blouses that I (for some reason) *hate* look “inherently good” on me. It emphasizes parts of my body that are considered feminine, or agreeable to look at. But I want to send out specific ~*~*feelings*~*~ with my clothing choices, and dressing up with that in mind rather than my body in mind (though I do have to change things up for it to w*ork *with my body–not ever button down makes me look like Katharine Hepburn–most actually look like [this](, so I have to be discerning) then I am much happier.

    I hadn’t planned on using the Kibbe System at all anyway, to be honest. I treat all of these cute little “which type/style are you” with the same feelings as I treat horoscopes. Fun and cute and like ~oh my gosh I’m such a gemini, I’m such a romantic, I’m such a Griffinclaw omg~ but lol I’m actually going to do me instead. I will not avoid traveling on new moons nor will I eschew mannish blazers. Like actually. That link had a thing about “[what not to wear](” if you’re romantic (if you click on romantic and scroll down) and said essentially that women with this sort of body type would look ‘frumpy’ in oversized looks, and overly sexual in sharply cut looks and had examples for both, but like—hourglass women can wear suits!! [Here](’s an example (in fact she’s always a “romantic example”). The examples worked because they were poorly tailored fits for both of those things!! Or maybe poorly tailored is the wrong choice, it could also be “deliberately tailored to emphasize sexuality”, which may not be what is wanted.

    This newest what hogwarts style are you thing seems to tell me that I have some ethereal qualities along with the classic romantic stuff. Neat. I’ve always wanted to be described as “ethereal” which here apparently means looks like an old person, which I’ve also aspired to tbh (the guide thingy said “If a rude guy has ever looked over your shoulder at a fashion magazine and asked, “Is she supposed to be pretty?” you were probably looking at an Ethereal.” <–this is my #goals). What does it want me to wear? Oh drapey flowy gowns that will never work with my lifestyle at all? —Well it uses Cate Blanchett as inspo and I’ve seen her slay a suit or two, so I think I’ll just keep doing what I want.

    I guess my **tl;dr** is what u/exmechanistic said. Sorry to ramble on just to say “fuck it, do you”, but. Fuck it. Do you!

    **I don’t think straight men actually care about what I wear as much as I do. And it doesn’t matter because my partner likes all my nonsense clothes for w/e reason.

  10. riggorous
    May 1, 2018 at 2:53 pm

    I think these systems are helpful for people who are unsure of their personal style or confused about how to put together outfits, not because these systems are accurate, but because it gives them a sense of security. You’re following a guide, it tells you what looks good on you according to the phases of the moon and so on… very medieval-type prophesising in the absence of science stuff. I still think it’s better to think about fashion critically and build your own aesthetic, but some people don’t have time for that, some people find it too hard, etc, so just do what makes you happy. it’s just clothes!

  11. magistra_monstrorum
    May 1, 2018 at 5:26 pm

    I like Kibbe derivatives a lot as a starting point, especially if your goal is to just look “good” – I think a lot of people on this sub look at fashion as a form of artistic expression, and if that’s the case then Kibbe is not going to do a whole lot for you, because you have different goals and are working from a different set of standards for whether a piece of clothing “works” for you or not. The original version from the ’80s is also a) very dated at this point and b) like the ’80s version of seasonal color analysis, disproportionately focused on white women. However, different people have taken those ideas and updated them and made them more accessible to nonwhite women, and in their modern incarnations I think they’re very helpful, if only to understand why a particular color or cut never looks the way I expect it to on me, when compared to the same item on a celebrity or model. It’s a shortcut for people who want a set of guidelines when shopping – like, ok, I have a “Yin” face so that’s why turtlenecks make my face look rounder, or I’m a Natural, so that’s why my blazer and button-down make me look like I’m being strangled. As an addition to that, I think knowing which category I fall into helps me break the “rules” – like if I’m a Natural type and want to look conventionally attractive in a blazer anyway, maybe I unbutton the blazer and wear it open instead. Or whatever.

    I don’t particularly like the “Truth is Beauty” system because to me, the style identity blends don’t really match how she defines the style identities – like how can your body be a Dramatic Classic Ingenue if all of those things mean something very different from each other? Sure you can have that style, but at that point it’s just a style choice, not based on your body.

    I’ve seen systems that take Kibbe’s 13 categories and cut them down to 10 to resolve the “one type of face, another type of body” issue, by taking Kibbe’s original 5 categories (Dramatic, Natural, Classic, Gamine, and Romantic) and splitting them into “Yin” and “Yang” versions of each, where “Yin” means body that looks curvy and looks more conventionally attractive in styles that emphasize the waist, and “Yang” means body that looks more straight. So like a Yin Dramatic would be a tall woman with sharp, Yang bone structure, but a curvy waist and maybe some softer facial features (eyes, lips, etc.). Like Sophia Loren. While a Yang Dramatic (or pure Dramatic) would be more like Katharine Hepburn. I like this version more than the Truth is Beauty system because even though two styles are getting combined, they’re being combined in a way that means something. “Yin Classic who likes edgy clothes” tells me a lot more than “Dramatic Classic Ingenue”, because the former description is based on a more systematic methodology, in my opinion.

    Obviously I have a lot of opinions on this subject, lol.

  12. ak2553
    May 3, 2018 at 5:30 pm

    Late to this, but I just wanted to add that I personally find this interesting. And it can be helpful to some people, maybe not to others. I have seen people pull off clothes and styles that they theoretically shouldn’t.

    It took me a while to get typed as an Ethereal though, because I’m only 5’2. So it’s harder for people to implement that kind of style visually onto me. I personally think it works better for me than Kibbe, which just confused me, because none of the categories really fit me at all.

    Either way, sometimes having some sort of system helps people form their own sense of style, and for others, it wouldn’t. To each their own!

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