Seriously sexy curves, with a small waist and big hips and thighs, outfit celebs like Beyonce and Scarlett Johansson. If you want to get out of your skinny jeans and join these ladies in the curvy club, it's going to take some hard work.
To add size to your hips and thighs you need to strength train and eat enough calories to support muscle growth. That's the only natural way to increase the size of a body part. Keep in mind, however, that body shape is largely determined by genetics. Although you can enhance your curves, it's smart to be realistic about how much your body shape will change.
Your Workout Plan
If you're new to strength training, don't worry. You don't have to do any complex moves or lift a lot of weight to get the curves you want. Working out can be fun, and achieving your body goals will give you the motivation to keep going.
Workouts should focus on building the glute muscles in the butt, the hamstrings on the backs of the thighs and the quadriceps on the fronts of the thighs. A lower-body workout two to three times a week is a good goal. Toned abdominal, oblique and lower back muscles will also help accentuate your hips and give you that hourglass shape.
You shouldn't neglect your upper body, even though the lower body is your focus. Be sure to add in a few upper body exercises to your routine.
On days you're not strength training, do some type of cardio. If you have trouble keeping weight on, keep the cardio light to moderate, such as walking or jogging. If you have some fat to burn, up the intensity of the cardio, running or doing interval training.
Read more: Health Tips for a Flat Stomach & Bigger Butt
Seven Exercises for Your Butt, Hips and Thighs
For dangerous curves, these exercises have your back (literally). Start with no weight so you can learn the move, then add weight to make it challenging and up your muscle-building potential.
Single-leg squats - Stand in front of a weight bench or chair. Lift your right foot up and extend it out in front of you as you send your booty back and down, sitting in the chair with control. Without using momentum, stand back up into your left leg. Repeat the move for 10 to 20 reps, then switch legs. To add weight, hold dumbbells at shoulder height.
Lunge to step-up - Stand in front of a bench, box or sturdy chair. Step up onto the chair with your right foot. Bring your left foot up, bend the knee and bring the thigh parallel to the ground. Reverse the movement to step off the chair. Then, take a big step back with your right foot and come into a lunge by bending your front and back knees to 90 degrees. Make sure your front knee doesn't come out beyond your toes and keep your torso centered over your legs. Press into the back foot to come back to your starting point. Do 10 to 20 reps, then switch sides. Hold dumbbells at your sides to add weight.
Sumo squats - Stand with your feet wider than your hips with your toes pointed out. Keeping your torso straight and your shoulders back, bend at your hips and knees, lowering your bum down toward the ground as far as you comfortably can. Pause at the bottom, then rise back up to standing. Do 10 to 20 reps. Add weight by holding a dumbbell or kettlebell in your hands between your legs.
Single-leg hip thrusts - Lie on the floor on your back with your left foot on a weight bench or the seat of a chair. Extend your right leg toward the ceiling. Push through your left foot to raise your hips off the floor as high as you can. Pause at the top, then slowly lower your hips down. Do 10 to 20 reps on each side.
Side step-ups with side kick - Stand perpendicular to a weight bench or sturdy chair. Step your right foot up, bring your left foot up next to it, then raise the left leg out to the side as high as you can. Bring the left leg back in then step down with the left foot then the right foot. Do 10 to 20 reps on each side. Hold dumbbells at shoulder height to add weight.
Fire Hydrants - Get on all fours with your wrists aligned under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Bring your right knee off the floor and open your hip out to the side, until your inner thigh comes almost parallel -- or as high as you can lift it. Lower to the starting position and repeat. Do 10 to 20 reps on each side. Add weight by squeezing a dumbbell behind the knee of the working leg.
Side lunges - Stand with your feet together. Take a big step to the right with your right foot. Land with a bent knee and lower down into a lunge, pushing your hips back and down and keeping your torso upright. Pause at the bottom, then push through your right foot to bring it back in to your left foot. Repeat 10 to 20 times on each side. Add weight by holding a dumbbell in front of your chest with both hands.
Dial in Your Diet
Now that you have your workout plan, you need a diet plan that will support increased activity and muscle growth. Chances are, you're going to need to add calories to give your body the materials to make the muscle for those new curves your working on.
How many calories you need to add is the question, and it's one best answered by your doctor, a trainer or a nutritionist who can take into account your current weight, your activity level and your goals to come up with your perfect number. Once you have that number, it's your job to stick to it as much as possible each day.
But the number isn't all that matters. What you eat is just as important. You need energy to kick ass in your workouts and you need protein for building muscle. A clean diet that focuses on fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean sources of protein, such as white meat chicken, fish and beans will meet all your body's nutritional needs.
What your body doesn't need is sweets, sugary drinks and processed junk foods. Save these for the occasional treat.
Read more: What Food Makes Your Hips Big?