If may not summer yet, but as someone famous once said ‘A year without summer is like a life without love’. Ok, so I may have just made that up but it’s true no?
But with all the beauty of summer comes something dreadful that we spend weeks upon months fretting over. You’d think we’d be used to it since it comes around ever year but, like winter, it’s just as horrible and full of shock each time it happens.
Bathing suit shopping.
Too many times I’ve aimlessly wondered into Swimco with no idea of what I want, what size I am, how much I’m willing to spend, or even what colors I like. This year I’ve done my research and I’m going to share what I’ve learned so this doesn’t happen again...
Ok for the most part I know it’s in my head, but there has been times where I’m standing at the mirror under light that makes me look like an extra from the Walking Dead and I think to myself ‘this one would be great if my legs and my neck were the same size or, is this a child’s size? Hi, my name is Every Woman Ever and my boobs and butt are NOT the same size'.
So here it is ladies. 7 Steps to picking the perfect suit before you even hit the store.
- KNOW YOUR BODY TYPE: If you face facts now that perhaps you don’t have the legs, ass, chest, you want but are willing to love and work with what you’re staring at in the mirror you will be successful. I’m completely top heavy. There is no way I can get bottoms and a top that are the same size, and that’s ok. The easiest way to gauge your shape is simply to measure. Measure your hips at the widest point, waist at the smallest and bust at the fullest point for the best reference, since swimsuit sizing and styling depend on these ratios. You will fall (for the most part) into one of these categories.
-Side note: Do not call yourself ‘apple or’ pear shaped in my presence. Be kind and accept the true shapes you are below.
- The Queen Bee: If your hips are wider than both your waist and bust, you're thee Queen Bee.
- The Lusty Latifah: If your waist is wider than your hips, and equal to or nearly as wide as your bust, you are the strong and sexy Latifah.
- The Sexy Scarlett: If your bust and hips are about the same width, but your waist is significantly smaller, you're a classic Scarlett.
- The Premium Paltrow: If you're thin all around, with no significant difference between your hips, waist and bust, you're a Premium Paltrow.
2) FIND YOUR CONFIDENCE: Now that we know what we’re working with the next step is too glam up. The best advice I can tell you is to doll yourself up before heading out to shop. Yup head over to the swim store dressed to impress because the better you can make yourself feel the more confidence and self-love you will have entering the front doors.
3) FLATTER YOURSELF: Now we can highlight what we LOVE about ourselves and downplay what we love only slightly less.
- To highlight your best features use bright colors or pattern.
- To minimize something you love less, use a solid color.
- If you have pale skin (like me), try deep jewel tones.
- If you have dark skin, bright colors can actually be more flattering and help hide what you love less.
- To add curves for those Paltrow’s out there, choose a piece with ruffles, ruching, or embellishments in that area.
- To emphasize your sexy curves use shirred or ruched fabric.
- Lastly don’t be afraid to mix and match! Solid tops with patterned bottoms and vice versa. Choose what makes you feel your best.
- SIFT THROUGH THE STYLES: Not ever cut will work on every shape. I love that I’m a Scarlett. But there’s no way that I can fit my chest into one of those cute little triangle tops. As much as I like them, I have to avoid them.
Here are a few tips to help you choose a flattering cut.
- High-cut bikini bottoms make legs look longer. If you're a sassy shortie, or you're long in the torso, this is a good option.
- Halter tops draw attention to the bust, as do triangle tops. However they’re not the same. If you're ta-ta heavy a halter can be a great way to get the support you need.
- Tie-front bikini tops draw the eye to the bust. If you want a hand in this area this top will pull the ladies closer to one another, effectively making them look larger.
- Bandeau tops will make the bust seem wider. If you're a Queen Bee and you want to smooth out your proportions choose a bandeau top with ruffles or other detail.
- ASK FOR FEEDBACK: Don’t be afraid to ask for help: If you’ve met me coming into Sister’s you’ll know just how honest I can be. I will send you back into the change room with more options if you aren’t looking as amazing as I think you can, and my standards for you are high. So go in and if you still just aren’t sure, ask. Get one of the girls to assist you and give you honest feedback. Don’t be afraid of constructive criticism.
Basically the best way to shop for something that stretches beyond our natural comfort zone is to go in with an open mind and accept your body for what it is. Amazing.