Find the perfect swimwear for your shape

Can I just start by talking about things people wear over their swimsuit?

I see way too many women who wear board shorts. They obviously think that said shorts hide their bums, and that they’re less offensive than a bum in a cozzie. Let me tell you – they’re not. Board shorts are possibly the most unattractive thing a woman can wear on the beach.

They bunch at the wrong places and actually ADD bulk to your bum and thighs. The only time board shorts are attractive is if you’ve got a tiny bum and long legs and you’re wearing the super mini cute ones that don’t cover much.

If you don’t want to stand at the edge of the waves – baring all, go for a lightweight kaftan or a beach dress, it’s a much prettier and more flattering option.

Maaji - Egality in Parkhurst stock their range.

Seafolly - Lingerie & Leisure stock their range.

Now for the tips on your cozzie choice:

The bikini:


I had clients getting into bikinis last summer who never thought their tummies would ever see the light of day again. It’s all about getting the right style and support for your shape. You don’t need to have a perfectly flat stomach for a bikini; I mean how many people over the age of 30 (especially those who have had kids) can claim to have a washboard tummy??

The one-piece:


If you’re really not comfortable with your tummy and prefer to have it concealed, then this is obviously the style for you. Plus – this style was trending in a big way last summer, and I think it’s here to stay.

I love one-pieces, they can be so classic, understated and feminine. I’m not talking your average Speedo that you train in in the gym. You get some really pretty one-piece designs from brands like Maaji; Seafolly; and even Woolies or Edgars for the more budget conscious. So even if you’re a skinny malink, a one-piece can be a lovely option and it will be super comfy for body surfing.

The tankini:


The perfect compromise between a bikini and a one-piece. A tankini is also great for post-beach lounging as all you need to do is throw a sarong around your hips and you’re sufficiently ‘covered’, if that’s what you’re after. A tankini can also be a great option for a post-pregnancy tummy that is still a bit bloated and out of sorts.

Some basic guidelines in terms of what style to get for your body shape when shopping for swimwear:

Broad hips: plain bottoms are better i.e. no ties, bows or ruffles at the hips
Narrow hips: the opposite of the above. Add some interest in the bottom half via colour, print or embellishment.
Flat chest: the bandeau/strapless style works well. Go for a padded top if you want to provide the illusion of some boobs.
Big boobs: halter neck styles with underwire support, these don’t look like a bra as such, yet they offer the support of a bra.
Big tummy: ruching is a winner, as is a print – Both will provide the perfect amount of distraction and disguise.
Long torso: a one-piece with interest or detail at the tummy can work well for you.

Here are some more visuals for you to reference:






Banana Moon

At the end of the day, you need to be comfortable too. My advice is to really try to get the best style for your body shape, and then to just embrace your figure and do what you like to do best when on the beach…be it swimming, playing bat and ball or just lounging. Nobody is really looking at you; they’re all too worried about their own body imperfections!

I wish I had been less self-conscious when I was a taut and lean 20-something, I’m now much more carefree and happy with my body and it’s not nearly as good as it was 10 years ago!

So I’ll leave you with a parting note: Enjoy your body for what it is today, because next summer it will be a whole year older.

Personal style is the outward expression of your inner self. We all want to look (and feel) gorgeous, but often we don’t have the energy, time or means to look our best. That’s where PippaJ comes in. No matter what your shape or size, I take the hassle out of looking great, partnering with every client on an effortless adventure to their own personal style.

For more articles from Pippa J go here.

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