ith endless categories being used to define women’s bodies, swimsuit shopping has become an impossible task—especially as clothing tags don’t tend to say: “buy this if you’re an inverted triangle.” This season is all about body positivity and feeling good in your own skin, so let’s leave the apples and pears in the fruit bowl and get back to soaking up the sun. Baring all in a string bikini is easier said than done, however. If you feel more confident drawing eyes away from a certain area or giving yourself a little more support, our swimsuit guide for different body types has— literally—got you covered.
If you’re looking for a suit that flatters a smaller bust, go for an embellished or ruffled design up top to help give the illusion of a larger chest. Alternatively, there are many styles on the market that have sewn-in padding to give you a little extra boost.
A triangle bikini may not be your friend, but cup sizes, underwire and thicker straps are. Choose a stretchy material that won’t dig in, don’t be afraid to get coverage by going up a cup size, and consider flattering your décolletage with a deep V-neck. Halter straps may place pressure on your neck, but halter-top suits that sit higher up on your chest can provide great support.
Swimsuits for broad shoulders
If you’ve got wider shoulders, you can balance them by going for suits with an asymmetrical neckline that will draw the eye up and away. Similarly, patterned bottoms with a plain top, or a solid-colored suit with paneling details, will give the illusion of an hourglass figure.
Solid bottoms and printed tops will draw the eye away from broader hips and balance out your body. Off-the- shoulder numbers will also serve to elongate your clavicle and give you a curvy silhouette.
Complimenting a short torso
If your waistline is closer to your chest than it is to your hips, you have a small torso. By lifting the bust line with a bikini and donning low-rise bottoms, you can serve up an elongated mid-section. Adding halter straps will also work by showing off your neck and shoulders, instead of your short torso.
The ideal swimsuit for a long torso
Long torso girls can really rock a one-piece. Bikinis with high-waisted bottoms will also work to give the impression of a shorter mid section.
Flatter your back
If love handles are getting you down, tuck them away with a one-piece or high-waisted bikini bottoms that cover the belly button (to prevent a muffin top). If your problem area is higher up, go for pieces with a high back and thick straps that—instead of digging in and creating depressions—flatter and smooth your profile.
Swimsuits for short legs
To elongate shorter legs, go for high-cut suits that sit further up on the hips, creating a V-shape. If you’re feeling brave, thong-style bottoms will work to generate an optimum limb-length.
If you have an athletic or narrower figure you don’t need to worry about balancing proportions. To create a curvier silhouette, you can add dimension with cutouts, shirring and bold prints.
To hide a tummy or the liters of seawater you accidentally swallowed, sport a peplum style one-piece or a tankini for a cute cover-up. Ruching will also work to conceal a stomach and a plunging neckline will draw eyes away from your mid-section. Tummy control suits are revolutionary—offering easy curves and ample stability.
For the guys
Boys: will you be bold in briefs or opt for comfort in board shorts? These are longer than swim trunks and are perfect for adventurous-types that plan to surf or skate whilst catching rays (hence the word “board”). More options include square leg swimsuits, which are the equivalent of boxer underwear, and swim jammers, which hug the legs and are ideal for endurance pros.
Wear what you want
Swimsuit shopping, harsh dressing-room lights and friends with mile-high legs can be more-than-enough to ruin a beach day. Remember that nobody is looking at you. In fact, everyone feels this way—we’re just all built differently. Try to focus on emphasizing your favorite feature when choosing a suit, not covering up your least favorite. If you’re comfortable, protected and having fun, swimsuit season can’t get you down.
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