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How to Feel Your Best During Swimsuit Season

Updated on January 17, 2014


During the cold, snowy months of winter, you long for the lazy, hazy days of summer when you can relax by the beach or at the pool. As you shovel your way out of the driveway and frostbite burns through your fingers, thoughts of summer and a refreshing dip in the pool can make your task a bit more bearable; however, when you remember that you need to wear a swimsuit for those days summer days to come, the longing can often turn to dread.

For many women, swimsuit season is the most dreaded season of them all because they are just not comfortable enough with their bodies to show some skin. Because let's be honest--being in your swimsuit has a way of making us feel practically naked in public! However these days, there's a multitude of swimsuit styles available, so there is no reason to ever feel uncomfortable in a swimsuit. Choosing one that suits you is the key to feeling cool and confident at the beach.

Don't be afraid to rock a one-piece if that's what makes you feel comfortable. Plus a monokini will help create the illusion of curves!
Don't be afraid to rock a one-piece if that's what makes you feel comfortable. Plus a monokini will help create the illusion of curves!

Don't Pay Attention to Numbers

When you're shopping for a new swimsuit, don't pay any attention to that number on the tag. Like most apparel, swimsuit brands, styles and cuts all run differently from one another. What might be an 8 in one suit may be labeled a 4 or 6 in another. Ignore the numbers and buy the suit that fits your body best. Don't try to squeeze into a size 6 if it just doesn't fit right. Wear the size that not only looks good, but also feels good. If the suit feels way too tight or way too loose against your body, then odds are you will feel self-conscious wearing it. Or even worse, you could experience a horrifying bikini blooper! Forget the numbers so you don't wind up on any "don't" lists.

Need a boost up top? Look for a swimsuit with molded or push-up padding!
Need a boost up top? Look for a swimsuit with molded or push-up padding!

Do Pay Attention to Your Shape

In addition to sizing, it's important to choose a swimsuit style that will complement your particular body type and shape. For example, if you are a bit hippy, then a tankini with a dark-colored scoop bottom may work best. The darker hue will help minimize your bottom half, especially when paired with a printed top. If you have a bit of a tummy pooch, try an A-line or flowy blouson-style swimsuit, a style with ruching along the torso area or a high-waisted two-piece. For women who are skinny as a stick and are looking to create the illusion of hourglass curves, try a solid-colored twist bandeau top paired with a printed hipster or boyshort bottom, or even a one-piece with side cutouts, also known as a monokini. Finally, if you're self conscious about a smaller bust, you could always accentuate your top half by choosing an embellished top (think fringe, ruffles or bold prints) or a top with molded or lightly padded cups. All women are shaped differently and what looks great on one may look terrible on another. By choosing a swimsuit style that's flattering for your specific shape, you'll feel more confident at the beach or pool. (For more fit and style ideas, check out this swimsuit style guide).

If you're into bold prints and patterns, don't be afraid to show it off with a fun-in-the-sun style
If you're into bold prints and patterns, don't be afraid to show it off with a fun-in-the-sun style

Do Choose Swimsuits that Reflect Your Style

Finally, it's utterly important to always choose swimsuits that reflect your personality and style, or else you'll run the risk of feeling uncomfortable in public. If you are a more of a demure person with timeless and classic style, don't feel pressured into wearing bold and bright colors with busy patterns or trendy embellishments. Choose a solid black suit that will make you feel chic and sophisticated, and that will always be on-trend. If you are more extroverted and love to express your bold personality, go for it! Try a suit in a fun print or color palette, or something with some fun details or embellishment!

Black is the most slimming of swimsuit colors and one-piece swimsuits can help hide a tummy pooch
Black is the most slimming of swimsuit colors and one-piece swimsuits can help hide a tummy pooch

Don't Compare Yourself to Others

Remember--the number one thing to keep in mind is that you should never compare yourself to others, whether "the others" are your friends, celebrities or models. Celebrities and models in particular often have entire glam squads, nutritionists, personal trainers, etc. to help them look the way that they do; for the majority of us, these standards are near impossible and just plain unrealistic! You don't have to wear an itty bitty bikini just because others are, nor do you have to go for the hottest trends. Play up your best assets and don't worry about what everyone else is wearing. Celebrate who you are in the swimsuit in a style that is right for you, and enjoy that well-deserved dip in the pool or ocean.

Mini Swimsuit Style Guide

Body Type
Best Styles
Pear Shapes
Dark, solid-colored bottoms + printed or embellished tops to accentuate your top half
Apple Shapes
Dark, solid-colored tops that offer support + printed bottoms to draw attention downward
Long & Lean Shapes
Mix & match a solid twist bandeau + printed hipster bottom to create the illusion of curves. Or try a monokini
Hourglass Shapes
Matching top & bottom so you don't throw your proportions off-balance
Curvy Shapes
High-waist two-pieces, swimsuits with ruching or blouson-styling
Choosing the right styles for your shape will help you feel more confident at the beach!

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