There is actually a science to looking sexy, contends celebrity designer Bradley Bayou.
In his book, "The Science of Sexy," now out in paperback, he says there are four basic women's body types, and women who pick their outfits with that in mind can make themselves as attractive as possible. There are right and wrong ways to dress for each, Bayou observes.
He says, "The most important rule of fashion is: Don't follow trends. Find your body type and what works for it and stick to that," clothes that flatter your shape.
"What you want to do," he continued, "is know your body and your body type and use the trend to your advantage. If the trend does not work for your body type, you stay away from the trend."
Bayou has advised the likes of Eva Longoria and Oprah Winfrey.
On The Early Show Thursday, he coached co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez about her fashion flaws and possible enhancements based on her body type, which he described as rectangular, with hips, waist and shoulders roughly the same.
Then, he did the same for three other women, each representing the other body types: a triange (hips proportionally wider than shoulders), an inverted triangle (shoulders proportionally wider than your hips), and an hourglass, which Bradley calls "the most attractive shape," saying, "That is really what men find attractive, and women. It's sort of the balance of nature that people find attractive."
Bayou tried to help women look as much like an hourgass-type as possible. For Rodriguez and other "rectangles," that means empasizing their waistlines.
"Sexy is confidence," Bayou, who has his own line of clothing, told Rodriguez. "I can give women confidence just by the way they dress. I balance their bodies out, make women feel better about themselves."
He shared a secret about a dress he designed for Oprah, saying it "worked for her because it synched her waist in. She's always worried about her hips, so (with a) fuller skirt, you cover it up. Like every woman in the world, she didn't like her arms. So I created something to cover up the part of her arms she didn't like. Put it all together and you have the Oprah dress!"
Bayou has what he calls the "Ten Commandments for Fashion': Thou shalt choose the right undergarments. Thou shalt select skinny fabrics and cuts. Thou shalt choose the highest quality fabrics thou can afford. Thou shalt ignore clothing tags -- the fit is the thing. Thou shalt not force your figure into every style. Thou shalt hail accessories. Thou shalt use your skin to your advantage. The prints and accessories must be in scale with the body. Thou shalt not buy big-ticket trendy items. Thou shalt wear the V-neck shape -- it looks good on every woman.
To watch part of the Bayou Early Show segment,
To read an excerpt of "The Science of Sexy," click here.