As a matter of fact, pleats at the waistline make you look like you weigh more. That should scare everybody off.
Huh -- I never heard that before. As I've commented before, I really saw the difference in more formal wear between pleats and flat fronts: American Suits were flat fronts; European Suits were tailored/pleated.
As someone who was taller/slimmer pleats looked good on me where whereas flat fronts never quite worked -- made me look too square. But as my waistline grew, pleated pants certainly made me look wider.