Should Swimsuits Be More Modest? 9 Tips For Finding The Right Swimsuit

American photographer Brian Bowen Smith has been shooting for over ten years. The Los Angeles-based photographer has since shot for publications including W, Interview and Vanity Fair. As for doing anything other than photography, it is “not an option” according to Smith. His new book, “Projects”, showcases images from throughout his career featuring well-known names such as Cindy Crawford, Carolyn Murphy, Hilary Swank and Demi Moore to name a few.

It seems like year after year, swimsuit fashions become even more sexier.    The latest trend is the thong bikini.  Once only marketed to Florida and California beach goers are now making their way in mainline catalogues.  Ahem?  Who wears this stuff out in public?  What do you think is going to far?

On the flip side, high waisted bikini’s are now more fashionable than ever.  The high waisted swimsuits of the 50’s are everywhere.  If you aren’t doing your sit-ups at the gym this year, don’t worry, you can hide it in this years fashions!

Retailers assume young women want to wear next to nothing, yet I wonder if it even sells in the younger age group?  This is what I ask myself. According to CDC, 69.0% of adults 20 years and over are overweight, which pretty much represents the majority of the public.  Lets face it, if you are looking for a swimsuit, we ALL have to shop online, no matter what size you are.  What is in the stores is just too sexy, and frankly doesn’t fit the every day gal.  The good news is that there are so many more brands and styles out there which are available to buy today for all ranges of body shapes and budgets.  The trick is to know what you are after, and what size you fit into.

Picture Credit Above- Zimmermann Floral Swimsuit

We all want a swimsuit that accentuate our best attributes and hide what we don’t want to draw attention to.  If you invest in a great classic swimsuit, chances are, you won’t have to buy one every season.

Here are 5 tips to find the best swimsuit for your figure…..

1.  Boy Shorts Appear Like They Hide, But Sometimes They Don’t

Boy shorts, if worn in a size too small can squeeze and exaggerate excess flesh.  Boy shorts can look great, be sure to wear it in a size that isn’t too tight.  With the right size, they can look like a pair of shorts that ride along your curves.

2.  Many Colors Can Make You Look Thinner Besides Black….

Every woman looks great in black, but if you don’t have to go black when there are so many more colors out there.  If you are hoping to hide weight, consider the saturated shades such as navy, plum, brown, and green.   Instead of focusing on colors, pay more attention to the cut and design of the swimsuit.  Look for vertical and diagonal stripes.  Small prints and patterns can also make the body look leaner.

3.  Don’t Be Discouraged If You Don’t Fit Into Your Normal Clothing Size

This happened to me last year.  I was trying on swimsuits, and grabbed a couple in my normal clothing size.  I found out I fit into 2 sizes up than I normally wear, so expect this if you go shopping, or shopping online.  Swimsuits are typically sized smaller than clothes because they are meant to fit snugly. You may have to go up a size or two. If you do find a swimsuit, buy two sizes and return the one that doesn’t fit.   Go for snug, because when you get into the water, the suit will loosen up.  Be sure the suit fits around your arms, and bottom areas, as weight can be pinched and won’t look right.

4.  Are You Bottom Heavy? Choose Minimal Fabric and Pattern On Your Hips…..

Avoid the boy-cut bottoms and go for a high-cut bottom which can give the illusion of longer, leaner legs.  Focus on the top with a pretty pattern, and go for solid prints on the bottom.  Draw attention upwards.  Two-piece suits work really well with bottom heavy figures.  Consider tankinis and swimdresses.

5.  Wide Shoulders?  Halter Tops Look Amazing

Halter or scoop neck tops look fantastic on gals who have wide shoulders.  Wide straps also do wonders by making shoulders appear smaller. Show off your shapely shoulders with a wider bandeau top.   Ruffle bottoms, belts, prints or patterns are great choices for bottoms.

6.  No Curves?  Cut Out Swimsuits Are For You….

Go for cut-out bathing suits that elongate the torso.  Look for swim suits with details at the waistline to create more of an hourglass shape, such as trim, details at the waist, or plunging necklines.  Bikinis which show off a lighter colored bottom, or v neck shapes emphasize the bust, and draw attention to the waist in an inverted way.

7.  Small Bust?  Go For Ruffles…..

Underwire, while meant for heavier bust lines can add definition to small busts.  Go for ruffles to add the illusion of more up top.  Beading, pleating and bulk in this area can add interest.  Bandeau bathing tops are essentially a strip of fabric gathered in the center aren’t your best bet.  Halter tops can look fantastic on small or medium bust lines.

8.  Large Frame?  Look For Vertical or Angled Lines….

Flatter your curves by looking at the overall design and shape of the swimsuit.  Avoid any string straps, and go for wider straps.  Try wrap styles in 1 piece suits, as they can be very thinning.  Higher cut legs can make your mid section look thinner.  A low cut top can also even things out than a top that cuts across the top.  Again, consider triangle shapes than rectangular shapes that make you appear boxy.  Go for matte swimsuits, as shine will show more than you want to pay for.  Look for suits with a hidden bra, and avoid halters that dip down too low with a large bust.

9.  Apply Tanner A Few Days Before Going Shopping or The Beach

It is amazing how tanner can warm up winter skin, and make you feel more comfortable with your body.  Tanned skin just makes you appear thinner.  Skip the tanning booth which cause skin problems, and apply tanner.  Plan on applying tanner a few days before you shop, as it might rub off on the fabric if applied the same day.

10.  Be Trendy And Mix And Match

Buying the top you want with the bottom you like has been a fashion decision that makes sense.  Retailers are coming out with collections that allow you to mix and match bottoms with tops.  Another trend we see now is mixing different patterns together.  Different kinds of patterns together is in style.  Go for two styles of florals such as the ones that Zimmermann pushes in their lines.  Next year, if you still want to work with the top or bottom, you can go online and add a new piece to your collection.

Check out my picks below for swimsuits that are modest, yet classy …

What do you like, and what do you want to buy for this year?


Marina West Mold Bra High Waisted Bikini Swimsuit Set $29 Dollars Amazon

Model Marloes HorstModel Marloes Horst

Profile by Gottex Polka-Dot-Print Sweetheart Tankini & Polka-Dot-Print Skirted BottomProfile by Gottex Polka-Dot-Print Sweetheart Tankini & Polka-Dot-Print Skirted Bottom Macy’s

SwimsuitsKenneth Cole Reaction Plus-Size Ruffle-Licious Bandeau Swim Dress 1X,2X, 3X $126 On Amazon

Profile by Gottex Women’s Shirred Princess Swim Dress, Sizes 6-16 $108 On Amazon

Profile by Gottex Martini V-Neck Cut-Out One-Piece Swimsuit Sizes 6-16 $128 On Amazon

Lisa Curran Swimwear Women’s Bond One Piece Bandeau Swimsuit $190 On Amazon

L’Officiel Paris by Thanassis Krikis1

Fraîche Oasis – Dutch beauty Ilse de Boer spends a day of relaxation in this story printed in L’Officiel Paris’ June-July issue. Photographed by Thanassis Krikis and styled by Vanessa Bellugeon, the blonde soaks up the sun in the summer designs of Chanel, Isabel Marant, Anne Fontaine and Gucci amongst others with tropical touches. / Makeup and hair by Sergio Corvacio

Kiera Knightley in Atonement

Kiera Knightley in Atonement

Gene Tierney 1945Gene Tierney 1945

vntage swimsuitsVintage Swimsuits

High Waist Bikini

High Waist Swimsuits-

Fancy - Sophia Gingham Maillot by Seafolly

Sophia Gingham Maillot by Seafolly

SwimsuitsSeafolly Women’s Matt Skirted Pant $58 On Amazon.

Women’s Retro Print Two Piece Long Tankini Ruffled Skirt Beach Bikini Swimwear $40 On Amazon

Tank Top Style One Piece Slimming Full Coverage Ruched Printed Bathing Suit $39 On Amazon


Miraclesuit DD-Cup Side Effects Temptress 12,14,16DD $158 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Women’s Solid Ambassadress Sizes 16-14 Plus, $149-$155 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Women’s Great Scott 16-24 Plus $129 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Women’s Colorblock Touche 16 plus only $120 On Amazon

Bekah Jenkins takes to the beach in summer brights and white hot bathing suits for the July issue of Woman Spain. 2Bekah Jenkins -July issue of Woman Spain

Bekah Jenkins takes to the beach in summer brights and white hot bathing suits for the July issue of Woman Spain.

Bekah Jenkins -July issue of Woman Spain

Black Ruffled Tankini

Black Ruffled Tankini $44- $139 On Amazon

L’Officiel Paris by Thanassis Krikis 2

L’Officiel Paris by Thanassis Krikis

SwimsuitsUjENA Women’s Bikini Swimsuit with Top & Shorts Bottom $43-$87 On Amazon

Matte Fifth Avenue Halter 1 Piece Black Swimsuit Swimset Beachwear $85 On Amazon

Blue Lagoon 1-PC $89 On Amazon

SwimsuitsLa Gabrielle 1-PC $179 On Amazon

UjENA Women’s Poolside Tankini Plus Swim Dress $43-$124 On Amazon

Inches Off Plus Size Swimsuit, 2-Piece Skirtini $55-$67 On Amazon

Chic Stylish One Piece Round Neckline Design Side String Lace Up Corset Swimwear Purple, Red And Black, $39-$44 On Amazon

One Shoulder Asymmetrical Bathing Suit Two Piece Swimwear Tankini Bikini S M L $39 On Amazon

SwimsuitsGottex Women’s Black Tie Collection In Poppy On Amazon

Profile by Gottex Women’s Cabaret Skirted Hipster Bikini Bottom $79 On Amazon

The Cabaret Collection By Profile By Gottex On Amazon

The Scarlet Collection By Profile By Gottex On Amazon

Hunter & Gatti Shoot Guess by Marciano’s Glam Fall 2013 Campaign

Hunter & Gatti Shoot Guess by Marciano’s Glam Fall 2013 Campaign

Barbara Fialho poses for Danny Cardozo in colorful swimwear and beach cover-ups for the July issue of Harper’s Bazaar Mexico.

Barbara Fialho -Harper’s Bazaar Mexico.

Kate Moss for VOGUE UK. The June 2013

Kate Moss for VOGUE UK. The June 2013

High waist bathing suits are considered to be high fashion…

You simply cannot go wrong with this look


Seafolly Bella Rose Collection

Bella Rose High Waist Bottoms $71 On Amazon

The Bella Rose Collection On Amazon only shows sizes 4- 10



Miraclesuit Women’s Plus Size Aloha Gardens One Piece Surplice Swimsuit Sizes 16-24 Plus $162 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Women’s Plus Size Life Lines One Piece Surplice Swimsuit Only Available in 16 Plus, and 18 Plus, $166 On Amazon


Miraclesuit Women’s Fashion Figures Jena OTS One-Piece Swimsuit Size 6- 16 $79 -$152 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Women’s Plus Size Pin Point Oceanus One Piece Swimsuit $156- $235 On Amazon

Miraclesuit Solid Adventure Ring Sizes 12,14,16 $39 On Amazon

Most Wanted Spliced High Waisted

Most Wanted Collection On Amazon

Neon Monroe Long Torso 1-PC $114 On Amazon

Sun and Sand Slider Bikini In Sunshine Yellow $45 – $89 On Amazon

Swimsuits2 PC. Ladies Gingham Orange Mold Bra Swimsuit Set $29 On Amazon

Celina Women’s One Piece Monokini Swimwear $20 -$29 On Amazon

SwimsuitsUjENA 1950’s Marilyn Tankini Polka Dot Swimsuit Beachwear $44-$149 On Amazon

Hourglass Underwire Swimsuit Beachwear Top and Bottom Swim Set $44- $99 On Amazon

Mint Leopard Buckle 1-PC $144 On Amazon

Elsa Hosk for Elle Sweden July 2013Elsa Hosk for Elle Sweden July 2013

Elsa Hosk for Elle Sweden July 2013Elsa Hosk for Elle Sweden July 2013

Swimsuits$9 Dollar + Free Shipping Swimsuits Here

Blue Plaid Swimsuit

$9 Dollar + Free Shipping Swimsuits Here

Royal Perfect Fit Slimsuit

Perfect Fit Swimsuits Bottoms $54 On Amazon

Perfect Fit Top $45 On Amazon


Magicsuit 2014 Black Stud Muffin Lauren Swimsuit $180 Sizes 6-16 On Amazon

Magicsuit Colorblock Heather $172 On Amazon

UjENA Polka Dot Underwire Plus Bikini Swimsuit Plus Size- $54- $124 On Amazon

Kate Upton covers the June 2013 issue of US Vogue

Kate Upton covers the June 2013 issue of US Vogue

SwimsuitsSeafolly Tropical Beat Halter Top $55 On Amazon

Seafolly Women’s Goddess Boyleg One-Piece Swimsuit $142 On Amazon Size 10-12 USA