Loving Your Summer Skin: Swimwear For Every Shape

It’s mid-July and as we’re writing this the outside temps feel like they’re in the mid-100’s… OK maybe we’re exaggerating, but only a little. We’re not sure where you’re reading this from (and here’s a warm hello to our Southern hemisphere moms in the midst of winter!) but we’re guessing it’s pretty warm for a lot of you, too.

As the days get really hot, sneaking away to a seaside town or lakefront location is one of the only ways to get some cool relief. If you’re able to do that this weekend, you definitely should. Here’s why: because the beach is good for you.

We know that sounds like a broad statement, but studies have found that time outside, and especially time by the water, is beneficial for both your physical and mental health. We could write a whole post outlining all the benefits, but instead, here’s a great piece to read about what the beach does to your brain. Now, that allows us to move on to another topic related to those mood-boosting beach trips: your swimwear. Because when you’re on the beach we want you to feel so good and confident in the skin you’re in.

If you have a collection of swimsuits or even one swim item that you love wearing and makes you feel so good in it: cheers to you. It’s not always easy to find! A good swimsuit should help you celebrate your body, but unfortunately, shopping for bikinis and one-pieces can leave women feeling not so body-positive.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.  It’s not about needing to have a certain body type to look good (and more importantly feel good) in your swimwear, it’s about knowing what styles, cuts, and prints will help you show off your already stunning body.

Shopping for shape is always a good rule to go by when it comes to your clothes, and it’s something you’ll learn to do well in pregnancy – if you haven’t already! Swimwear can be a bit trickier, so we’ve outlined some general guidelines for every body shape to help you pick up a suit that will help you enjoy those beach days even more.

Women’s Swimwear for Every Shape

For an “8” Body Shape: Classic Cuts & Supportive Shapes

An “8” body shape has a narrower, defined waist with curvy hips and a fuller chest. You’ll want to look for options that balance showing off your shape and providing support. Suits that accentuate a natural waist and draw the eye to the neckline are a good bet as well.

We recommend tops that feature a wrap style around your breasts, and bottoms that provide medium coverage for your bum but also have a higher cut on the hip to help elongate your legs. For an added touch of elegance, chose a black swimsuit to highlight your shape. 

Our top pick: Aerie Wrap One Piece Swimsuit



For a “V” Body Shape: Feminine Necklines and Low-Coverage Bottoms

Wider shoulders and narrower hips indicate a “V” shape, and a good strategy here is always to accentuate the curves you have. Suits that show a bit more skin can help you do this, hence the low-coverage bottoms we’ve referenced.

Tops with a deeper cut, more feminine neckline are a good choice (especially if you go for a one-piece). For the bottoms, suits that have less coverage (think cheeky cuts!) and a little bit of ruffling or a bold pattern can help accentuate your hips and balance your silhouette. 

Our top pick: L* Space Bodhi Strappy Bikini Top and Johnny Bikini Bottoms



For an “H” Body Shape: Bright Colors & Bold Styles

If your shoulders and hips are almost equal in width and you’re on the petite side, we’d call that an H body shape. To show off natural, feminine curves that you do have, opting for suits with interesting cutouts is a great way to go.

It’s best to avoid patterns with horizontal stripes that tend widen the silhouette, but two-pieces that utilize graphic and geometric prints can also help highlight your shape.

Our top pick: Aerie Cutout One Shoulder One Piece Swimsuit


For a “0” Body Shape: Chest-Flattering Cuts & High-Waisted Bottoms

If your natural waist is not as defined and you have fuller breasts, you can follow the “0” body shape guidelines. These tips also work well when purchasing swimwear during the early stages of pregnancy. In later stages of pregnancy, you’ll want to pick up a maternity-specific suit that gives your bump the support it needs while providing plenty of stretch.

If you’re less comfortable with your belly, high-waisted bottoms or one-pieces with a cinch around the waistline will be your best friend. For tops, look for a quality swimsuit material that gives you support while highlighting your assets.

Our top pick: J. Crew Eco Plunge V-neck Bikini Top and Eco Seamless High-Waisted Bottom


For an “A” Body Shape: Mix & Match Styles

If you have narrow shoulders, a smaller waist and wider hips, you have an “A” body shape. In general, a lot of the classic cuts we referenced for the “8” body shape will work, but with this, you’ll want a slightly different strategy for your tops.

We love mixing and matching your tops and bottoms with this body shape as it allows you to emphasize your breasts with a bolder print or bright color while opting for a more subdued, simple style for the bottoms.

 Our top pick: Aerie Leopard Bandeau Bikini Top and Black Ribbed Bikini Bottom



Keep in mind the above recommendations for various body shapes are just guidelines and hopefully help give you a bit of direction when shopping for swimwear next!

Ultimately, pick the prints and patterns and shapes that appeal to you and are comfortable to wear. When you feel good in what you’re wearing we promise you’ll be looking good too.

For more lifestyle and fashion tips be sure to download the Baby2Body iOS app.


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