Swimsuits: My Favorite Styles

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As promised, to follow up on my post Swimsuit Saga I am showing some of my favorite styles. Given the number of comments, I think there is a fair amount of Swimsuit Phobia out there. Perhaps this post will help get the conversation going!

I’ve categorized for quick viewing and given the style name and source for easy searching. I’ve done even more research since my last post and this hopefully will give you some suits to try.

One Piece Miracle Suits: Jena, Isabella and Camila

The first two styles will work well if you want to enhance and bring a little volume to your bust. The last style will work well if need a little more support on top. It also has an optional strap. All three styles have amazing support and “suck” in the middle and hips!

Tankinis: Michael Kors, La Blanca and Tommy Bahama

Say what you want about Tankinis (and I’ve read it all) I think these are pretty darn cute. If you have a long torso or just can’t face baring your stomach, these are some really great options. All the above would work on a small to average size chest. Not sure about the smaller bottom. Then try one of these:

In my last post I mentioned that if you have a larger chest, it is more very difficult to find a suit that fits. Last time I shared these two suits. Fantasie and Freya.

I was determined to make the second style work with the “skirtini” One of my readers also ordered it and she wrote that although the halter style wasn’t her first choice, she was happy that “the girls” weren’t squished or coming out the sides. This may be laughable to some of you, but it is a real problem!

The swim expert at Nordstrom is very partial to the first style for me, but I said that I didn’t know what to do about a bottom that would “match”. We then found this. It does not come in extended sizes like those above, but in a “D” cup. I ordered up a size. It’s on the way so we will see. Gottex.

I’ve also noticed these tops just new on the site with a DD and D cup. Note the color blocking technique with the second style–extremely flattering for the middle! Seafolly and Gottex.

If you need to FILL up the cups in your suit, try these:

All these suits shown are from Nordstrom. Land’s End  is known for their great suits. You can also try Eddie Bauer. Order early. Last year I tried to order a suit in July and everything was sold out. If you order online, be sure you are not paying for postage and return postage. Sites with FREE shipping both ways are worth a lot!

Once you find the perfect suit, you need the right cover up. Take a look at this video to see what you can do with a scarf!

So what do you think? Do any of these suits make you want to book that Hawaiian vacation?

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Swimsuit Saga

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It’s been two years since I wrote about swimsuits. Looking back at my post, I still like everything I wrote and it all applies today. If you missed this post the first time around, I think you will enjoy it. If you read it originally, you may want a review.

Recently I became “Swimsuit Fit Certified”. Can I just tell you I didn’t realize what I was getting into when I agreed to this. We were told to choose 6 suits of varying styles to try. We all had to come out of the dressing room to show and critique each other. Talk about a humbling experience, even if it was with peers and fellow stylists! But you know, the hands on approach is really the only way you learn. It was much more helpful than seeing a suit on a hanger that’s for sure.

Trying on swimsuits is every woman’s nightmare, no doubt about it. Being fitted for a swimsuit is really very similar to being fitted for a bra. You must trust the salesperson’s knowledge AND you must show her each suit on your body! She cannot help you and make a recommendation behind a closed door. So shave, slap on some self tanner and head to the store.

If you can’t face it, read reviews carefully before ordering online and be prepared to order SEVERAL. Here is what I’ve learned about some brands.

1. Miracle Suits are worth every penny. Hands down, they will offer you the best overall support especially in the middle.

2. However, Miracle Suits do not work as well on everyone, especially if you are well endowed. For whatever reason “the girls” just don’t fit into the cups correctly and there always seems to be some spillage, or as we learned to call it “east to west migration”.

3. If you have a LONG TORSO, I learned that La Blanca offers the best coverage to the seat so it’s not creeping up, but it is not as supportive in the bust.

4. Brands like Fantasie and Freya offer extended cup sizes.

After trying on my six suits, I did not find one that was a winner. I told our expert going into this that I would be the challenge in the group and indeed I was! I have a long torso, thick middle, heavy thighs and a large chest. Every suit I tried had it’s drawbacks in various areas. Luckily I’m not moving to (or even visiting) a tropical island anytime soon.

Time did not allow me to keep trying more possibilities, but here is what I know now that works for me.

-I will continue to search to find a top that fits correctly instead of settling with an ill fitting top and squishing my chest into something that doesn’t fit.

-As much as I want to wear a one-piece suit, they just don’t seem to work.

- I absolutely will not wear a two-piece suit unless I have plastic surgery.

What to do?

I have always had some luck with a tankini especially the “skirtini”. I tried on one of these skirts  and everyone liked it. Years ago I had purchased a similar one at JC Penney and it had a slit on the side. It worked well, but the top never fit. That skirt has seen better days. I think I really like this one by Tommy Bahama.

Next, what to do for a top? Our swim fit expert suggested Freya and Fantasie who also make bras. 

My plan is to try the bottom shown above in BLACK with the Freya polka dot top and see how it comes together. If it works, I might even just be brave enough to model for the blog.

Stay tuned later this week for my favorite styles of Miracle Suits, Tankinis and 2 pieces!

Are you swimsuit challenged? I just put it all out there for everyone to read, so let’s hear how you feel about swimsuits!

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I am not sure what is worse–trying on jeans or swimsuits. The latter gets my vote for worst dressing room “trauma”. I hate shopping for swimsuits. Most women would agree. So how do you choose the right suit for your body type? Actually many of the same rules I’ve been talking about for balancing the body type apply to suits as well. Now when there is way more skin showing this proves to be quite a challenge. Again, it’s about creating illusions to help one area look bigger or smaller. You always want to draw the attention AWAY from the flaw. From my research, it seems I could sum up this post in two words MIRACLE SUIT. Every magazine and site is talking about them. I’ve tried them on and they are fabulous. 


I’ve heard some critique Miracle suits as a little “matronly”. How about these? Also Miracle suits.     


Check out Eddie Bauer for even more styles. Note how they highlight what style enhances/minimizes an area. Very helpful! You can now get swimwear from Spanx. www.spanx.com

 Trying on Tips:  

1. Give yourself enough time and be prepared to try on 10 or more suits. If you just can’t bring yourself to go to the store, then try online shopping. 

2. If possible use a tanning cream or get a spray tan. Everything looks better when it’s combined with a little color on the skin. (Just stay away from the tanning beds) 

 3. Choose sizes larger than you wear in pants/tops. One of the worst mistakes women make is purchasing and wearing a suit that is too small. Keep in mind that suits run very different and don’t get discouraged by the size. 

I found some of the best tips from O magazine. Don’t miss the related links! Lots of good info here.

One piece or two-piece: How do I choose?

Hopefully the photos on the Oprah site gave you some ideas what will be the most flattering. Generally, from everything I’ve read and seen a one-piece suit is the most flattering as far as hiding the most flaws and helping enhance your assets. There are some great 2-piece suits out there and you don’t need 6 pack abs to wear them. If you are in the market for a new suit, spend some time at the beach or the pool and OBSERVE. Note what you like and don’t like. Think of how you want to present yourself at the beach and follow your instincts with a few rules thrown in:

-Small bust: add details such as ruffles

-Large Bust: Halter top, deep V, suits with built in cups

-Minimize the middle: criss cross, faux wraps, ruching and color blocking.

Add curves or volume: ruffles or tiers

-Long Torso: A band below the bust takes inches off the torso

-Short Torso: Faux belt or other fun details lower on the torso visually lengthen

-Dark colors minimize the bottom half.

-High cut legs elongate the leg.

If you go swimsuit shopping let me know how you do. Were the tips helpful? Do you have a better idea of how to “suit” your body type? Keep the questions coming.

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