They're shoulder pads, but not as we know them

There are shoulder pads. And then there are shoulders so sharp they should carry a health warning. With the likes of Victoria Beckham and Rihanna plumping for the latter, the autumn trend for substantial shoulders has gone from evoking memories of Dynasty to harking back to another TV favourite: Star Trek.

Long associated with the power suits, red lipstick and big hair of the 1980s, big shoulders had been, rightly, relegated to fashion wastelands.

But now they have made a comeback, just not as we know them. Gone are the squarely bolstered shoulders of Joan Collins; enter the Vulcan-style peaks designed by Balmain which are proving so popular with celebrities.

Victoria Beckham

Giant shoulders are celebrated for their figure-fixing properties, serving to make the waist and hips look tiny by comparison, or so the logic goes. One thing is for sure: no one will be thinking that her bum looks big in this.

Rihanna

Never one to shy away from a difficult fashion trend, the pop princess turned style-icon makes sharp-shouldered Givenchy Haute Couture look modern and demure.

Kate Moss

Pioneered by Kate Moss months ago, when she stepped out in a space-age silver dress by the designer Balmain, it was only a matter of time before the look filtered down to the rest of us.

Dannii Minogue

While not as sharp as the Balmain jackets sported by Victoria Beckham, those superhero shoulders are a sure fire way for The X Factor judge to overshadow rival Cheryl Cole.

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