Apparent leg length can be increased by pairing wedged shoes with long, flared pants, wearing high-waisted pants, or by donning shoes and pants of the same color, explains Tiffany Tse of Who What Wear. Actual leg length is increased through surgery, notes Dr. Rock Positano on the Huffington Post.
Donning heels and other footwear with color resembling the wearer's skin complexion creates an optical illusion that makes legs look longer, explains Tse. An increase in apparent leg length can also be achieved by wearing high heels with extra long toes or by applying bronzer on the legs, especially on the shins, when wearing shorts or mini-skirts.
Where an actual increase in lower limb length is required, surgery may be the only recourse. Two types of surgery are used to increase leg length: bilateral femoral lengthening and bilateral tibial lengthening, explains Dr. Rock Positano. Bilateral femoral lengthening is used to increase the length of thigh bones, while shin bone length is the focus of bilateral tibial lengthening.
In both procedures, bones of the leg are broken at selected points and then attached to pins that connect to external devices. These devices are carefully manipulated to subtly increase the size of the gaps between the broken bones. The body responds by filling these gaps with a material that eventually hardens into bone. By repeating this process over several months, it is possible to augment leg length by up to 3 inches, notes Dr. Rock.