Types of Neckline: A Complete Guide

Do you know that there are a number of types of neckline out there?

Necklines show off beautiful shoulders and elegant necks, as well as help to enhance the way you can wear necklaces.

There are numerous types of necklines and each one of them can help you add value and individuality to the overall look of your garment.

As you shop online or head out to a store, knowing what type of neckline you prefer and are looking for will help you narrow down your search.

Moreover, it is also helpful to know which type of neckline you look better in and which suits you.

For instance, someone with a smaller chest may choose a jewel-style neckline that gives the illusion of more curves.

However, a woman with a large chest may choose an off-shoulder style that shows off their collarbone and shoulder.

Keep on reading.

Choosing the right type of Neckline

When choosing the right type of neckline either online or in a shop, or when you are designing your own dress, it is important that you first make a draft.

You can change the design of neckline types that suit you and your style.

Just because a dress or shirt comes with a horseshoe neckline does not mean it will have to stay that same way.

Understanding which neckline is best for you can take a little trial and error.

For instance, if you are a 12UK size, a boat neckline, bateau neckline, or slack neck look will look amazing on you, however, as an 18UK look, you may look like a lump in these styles.

choosing the right neckline

While if you are 18UK size, you may want to consider wearing more scoop necks and v-necks as these work with all body types and will make you feel more comfortable.

Often, as a rule of thumb sweetheart, scoop, v-necks, and square necks work well.

These will help to lengthen the body and are also flattering on most body shapes and sizes.

However, if you are more bottom-heavy, like a part shape, for instance, crew necks, boat necks, etc. will look well

These two will help to balance by adding width to your shoulder.

Learn more about Evening Dresses: For Different Seasons here.

Types of Neckline

There are a number of types of necklines you can choose from.

However, which type suits you better depends on your body shape and size. Let’s learn about some of the common types of neckline as follows:

Asymmetrical Neckline

In most cases, an asymmetrical neckline is one that goes from the top of one shoulder to under the arm o the other one.

This is also known as “one shoulder”.

One thing to note is that asymmetrical also refers to a neckline that is not mirrored on both sizes.

So, if 2 sides of a neckline are different, it is also an asymmetrical neckline.

Boatneck, aka Bateau

This neckline is that one that tends to be wide and goes past the collarbone and rests on the shoulder.

Moreover, it is a higher neckline that helps to draw attention to the shoulders and lower neck.

This neckline is very simple and gives a feminine as well as a beautiful look with a dainty necklace.


A collared neckline is exactly as it sounds.

It’s like a collar on a shirt. Collard necklines can be with or without a button and the collar itself can come in a number of ways like large, small, decorative, or plain.

Cowl Neck

A cowl neck is when there is an extra fabric cut at the top of the shirt or dress or folds around the neckline.

Moreover, the fabric often drapes just blow or around the collarbone and this neckline tends to be flattering.

The cowl neckline has been popular since the 1930s, however, it is inspired by the Ancient Greeks.

Crew Neck

A crew neck is the most common neckline for T-shirts.

It is a round neckline that sits just above the collarbone close to the neck and looks best on people with longer necks.

Halter Neck

A halter neckline is when the straps of the top connect behind the neck leaving your shoulders bare.

Moreover, this type of neckline often has a low cut or open back.

In most cases, it drops down toward the bust and can create either a V-neck, sweetheart style, or a keyhole neckline.

The straps can either be sewn together or could also be tied together by you.

Illusion Neckline

An illusion neckline is a combination of both a low neckline and a high neckline.

The low neckline often is a strapless neckline, sweetheart style is often common, while the high neckline is a sheer or lace fabric creating an illusion of a higher neckline.

Wedding dresses often have this type of neckline.

Jewel Neckline

A jewel neckline is a higher neckline just like a turtle neck and is somewhat round.

It, however, does not have a collar.

Keyhole Neckline

This one has a hole in the front of the dress or top and the fabric creates somewhat of a V-shape at the bottom and connects at the top, creating a gap in the middle.

types of neckline 1

Off-Shoulder Neckline

An off-shoulder neckline is when the fabric tends to rest off the shoulders to create a very wide opening.

Moreover, these showcase the collarbone and shoulders while sleeves cover a bit of the upper arm and upper body.

It is important to note that these are very flattering on most women.


This one creates a very deep V that often extends past the cleavage.

However, it is different from a V-neck as the V-neck often sits at the top of the chest while this one goes much below.

Queen Anne

Queen Anne’s neckline is a mix of a sweetheart neckline with a high neck.

As the name suggests, this style is very popular among brides and is named after England’s Queen Anne.

Scallop Neckline

The Scallop neckline has a small half circle that cuts out along the entire neck and can be either small or large.

These may either be towards the neck or towards the body and makes a great option for formal wear.

Scoop Neckline

This one has been around for decades and is a classic look for dresses and skirts.

It features a wide, scooping neckline that creates a U shape and is very flattering.

Other Types

Some other types of neckline are:

Semi Sweetheart Neckline

This one is a less dramatic version of sweetheart and has a round, heart shape neckline that creates a V in the middle.

Spaghetti Strap

This one is a very versatile neckline that you can wear along with other types of necklines.

Moreover, it features two thin straps which rest at the top of your shoulders.


The square neckline helps to create a square shape and in most cases has a wide cut and low to show off your collarbone.


This one is immensely popular for formal dresses like wedding dresses and stays without any straps leaving your shoulders bare.

types of neckline 2

Moreover, this type of neckline is perfect for women with a large chest and beautiful shoulders and collarbones.

Strapless Sweetheart

One of the most famous versions of sweetheart is a strapless sweetheart, and as the name hints, it has a shape like the top half of the heath which creates a V in the middle.


A surplice neckline is what you can see on a bathrobe with one part of the neckline overlapping the other, creating a faux wrap style.

However, the difference between a wrap style and a surplice neckline is the fabric is in place with a surplice, but not in the wrap style.


A turtleneck or a polo neck is a high fit and close fitting around your neck and most often has excess fabric you can fold down.

However, other versions of a turtle neck are mock turtleneck or mock polo neck where the fabric tends to stand up around the neck.

Interestingly, these were originally created in the 15 century to protect the necks of knights wearing chainmail.

It was then adopted by royalty with the addition of ruffles to indicate their status.


As the name suggests, it is a V shape that can either be in the front or the back or both.

This can be a short V or plunging V, whichever you want, making it adaptable to everyone.

Neckline Variations

As well as all of the above types of neckline, there are things you can do to make each neckline more distinctive than others.

Some of the neckline variations you may see are:

  • gathered neckline
  • strapless neckline
  • off-shoulder neckline
  • halter neckline
  • racerback neckline
  • plunging neckline
  • bib neckline



With different types of necklines, you can enhance the top or dress you are wearing and can help flatter and suit your tastes.

Moreover, choosing the right neckline can make a huge difference to th style and the overall appearance of your outfit.

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