This photo is almost two years old, but it is the most recent photo I have of myself with B in a non-maternity bathing suit since I was super pregnant with C all last summer. Other than a brief weekend in South Beach (see prior post), I haven’t worn much non-maternity swimwear over the past couple of years.
Needless to say, I am in dire need of some swimwear updates. I’ve tried on countless swimsuits and feel like I’ve finally got a few I can be excited about wearing this pool season. Read on for some swimwear shopping tips and for my picks for this season.
If I can offer one piece of advice to any swimsuit shopper it would be to order a bunch of swimsuits online so that you can try them on at home. As long as you make sure you only order from stores with free shipping and free returns (Wala Swim, Athleta, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Zappos, ShopBop, NetAPorter, etc.), this tactic will cost you nothing (except for a little bit of time returning items) and will save you a lot of time and frustration in the long run.
This season I ordered from Wala Swim, Neiman Marcus and Athleta. Once my items all arrived, I set out to have a swimsuit trying on party in the comfort of my own home (and with a glass of wine). I was able to try everything on at once (instead of hopping from store to store all while having to get back dressed in between stores), avoid the horrific dressing room lights, and ask for my husband’s opinion when I was conflicted. I emerged from my swimsuit trying on party with a few great swimsuits.
This might be the world’s best one piece. I know that women come in all shapes and sizes, but this — dare I say — may be universally flattering. It has built in underwire cups and adjustable straps for a little bit of support (why oh why do most one pieces lack any support for the girls?), comes up high enough in the back to cover any dreaded back fat while still revealing enough skin to prevent the grandma effect, and comes in a great classic navy (and many other colors as you can see in the widget at the end of this post).
Next up is the two piece. I have a short torso so despite the fact that I do not have abs of steel sometimes a two piece is the better choice for me. Also, I still don’t understand the wisdom behind putting more clingy fabric over problem areas. I sometimes wish we all could just run around naked. Except – maybe not . . .
I was skeptical about Athleta swimsuits even though I love their athletic wear but not any more — I am a total convert. The quality and price can’t be beat, and there are so many size and style options. My plan is to wear these with the rash guards (see later in this post) at the beginning of the summer (since I am still getting my body in gear) and whenever I want more coverage, but I am equally as excited by their potential to be worn without a rash guard at the end of summer and next summer.
I got these two tops and liked them both. Both have a moderate amount of padding, good support, and adjustable criss-cross straps. They are sized and fit like a bra. Hallelujah. T liked the navy twister top so much that I decided to send the printed one back and exchange it for a turquoise twister top. I figure I can mix and match the two tops with the bottoms below depending on my mood since I stuck with similar colors. They will also work with my navy and white striped, navy blue, and white rash guards. Sensing a color scheme yet?
These shirred bottoms are fab. I also scooped them up in navy and turqoise. They provide just enough coverage without looking frumpy. The sides are excellent love-handle-containers. The Smocked Medium Tide Bottom is also worth checking out.
Now, on to braver pur-suits. I also scooped up this number for our anniversary trip. It may or may not make an appearance back in Atlanta this Summer depending on my comfort level, but I am so excited to wear it poolside in Napa. If nothing else, I’ll wear the bottoms with a white or navy rash guard this summer. I finally found a swimsuit that fits like my favorite and most flattering bra and underwear! Hooray!
Speaking of rash guards – Lands End makes the best rash guards. Hands down. Unless you are a toothpick, most rash guards are way too tight and not very flattering. These are cut more like a shirt and are not too long. I LOVE them. Sun protection (UPF 50) and confidence booster? Yes please! These are also great for the countless hours you moms may log chasing your little ones around the pool. One tip – I am 5′ 6″ but ordered a petite so that there is a tiny bit of skin between the hem and the top of my bikini bottom. I snagged this print to wear with solid navy bottoms for days I am feeling like I want a bit more of a print. It reads even better in person.
Check out the widget below for my above picks and for some other favorites. I am particularly fond of the barbados print bikini from Athleta. Wouldn’t it be so refreshing with a white rash guard over it? It says it is best for A-C cups, so the top may not prove to be my best match but it might be a nice option for a lot of you.
And this Karla Colletto rick rack one piece looks very promising for all body types. I’ve seen it in black, navy, wine, and coral. I try to keep the blog full of positives, but I feel like it would be helpful to share some of the bathing suits that didn’t work for me. I ordered a few pieces from Tory Burch Sport and just didn’t love the fit or the look of any of them. Depending on your shape and preferences, you may have better luck so the site may still be worth checking out. I hope to pick tennis back up this Fall so I may give Tory Sport another try because her tennis clothes are straight up adorable.
Stay tuned for my NYC Mother/Daughter Weekend guide!