Your Best Beachwear

beach shot

With the holiday season fast approaching it’s time to start thinking about beachwear.  Wouldn’t you love to feel as confident and happy in yours as the women in this picture? Unfortunately many of us lack body confidence and find shopping for swim/beachwear quite disheartening. The harsh overhead lighting in changing rooms doesn’t help as it is deeply unflattering and magnifies every tiny lump and bump. Rest assured, you will look better on your actual holiday (particularly if you have a bit of a tan, natural or otherwise) than you do stood staring at your reflection  in the changing room mirror. Knowing the styles that will work best for your shape will also make finding something you feel good in that much easier. Here are a few tips to help you get it right.

Lumps and bumps?

This M&S Secret Slimming costume combines print, with ruching and secret support!

Prints are great for disguising lumps and bumps. If you’re fairly straight up and down geometric designs will look good whereas if you’re curvy, florals and abstracts will look better.

A bit of strategic ruching around the midriff can also work wonders when it comes to disguising “love handles”.

Big tummy?

Apple-shaped ladies who carry their weight around their tummies will benefit hugely from a one-piece with “tummy control”. Fortunately these are widely available on the High Street. If you have this type of figure you may be blessed with long slim legs, so can actually look really good in the right swimwear.

Small/big bust?

It is worth spending a little extra on your swimwear if you’re large busted.  On a beach holiday your swimwear essentially becomes your underwear and it needs to give you the same support, so go for designs with some structure. Retro style swimwear is very “in” for this Summer and should fit the bill.

If you are not well-endowed, a little discreet padding can do wonders to boost your assets. Many bikinis have padded tops or you can simply insert gel “chicken fillets” into your existing beachwear.

Bandeau may be great for minimizing tan lines but are rarely flattering as they have the unfortunate effect of making a small bust look even smaller (trust me, I know!) and don’t provide enough support large busts.

Big Bottom?

Don’t be tempted to cover up with big bikini bottoms. A large expanse of fabric will just make your bottom look even bigger. Opt instead for a briefer version as this will break up the area and therefore make it look smaller.

Short legs?

If you want to give the impression of longer legs, choose a bikini or costume with a high cut leg.  Be careful though if you’re pear shaped as a high cut leg will draw attention to the fullest part of your thigh.

Mad dogs and Englishmen….maria odabash

If you want to be seen in the most flattering light, stay out of the sun at midday (it has the same effect as that overhead lighting in changing rooms!) or slip on a knock-out beach cover-up.

And finally, take heart, even women with fabulous figures have their hang-ups. Luxury swimwear designer and former model Melissa Odabash  (pictured right) revealed that on a recent holiday:

“I refused to walk down to the water in case the paparazzi got a shot of my thighs in the midday sun…. Trust me, even Gisele ( Bundschen) would have a problem if she was being photographed in full daylight”.