How to Find the Right Swimsuit for Your Body Type and Shape

Discover The Perfect Swimsuit For You!

Is there anything worse than swimsuit shopping? I don’t think so. Especially if you shop in the store and change in the fitting rooms with bad fluorescent lighting. Not to sound totally dramatic…but it can be soul-crushing. In this post, I share some essential tips to help you find the right swimsuit for you and your body shape, that will fit and flatter you, and make you feel more comfortable.

I’ve shared how to determine your body shape using measurements in this post in case you’re unsure of what your body type is.

How to Choose the Best Swimsuit For Your Body TypeSource:

You might not fit neatly into any of these categories (below), but this guide will definitely help you get on the right track toward finding what does complement your body and have you feeling your best! Yes, it’s possible.

How to Choose the Best Swimsuit For Your Body Type

#1 | Small Bust

To address a small bust I recommend wearing a top or a one-piece swimsuit with an eye catching top that has ruffles, a print, a bold color, or embellishments like sequins, fringe, beading, etc. To build your bust, padded tops are also a great way to go. This tip applies to any Triangle body shape (also called pear body shape) as well. If you have a Triangle body shape, your upper body is smaller compared to your lower body. So wearing swimsuits with details that draw attention to your upper body will help to create that balance, build a bust, help even out narrow shoulders, etc.

#2 | Larger Bust

The next common area of self-consciousness in a swimsuit might be a large chest. It can be very difficult to find a suit that makes you feel secure, supportive, and comfortable, while still feeling modern and sexy (without that plunge neckline). I recommend a top that comes in cup sizes, so you can pick the appropriate cup size for you. It will traditionally have an underwire, and might also be adjustable. Also, thicker straps will help you with the support that you want and need for a fuller bust. Two brands I recommend are MiracleSuit and Sea Level.

By the way, if you’re looking for flattering tops for big busts, check out this post next.

swimsuit for women with broad shoulders one piece halter v neck swimwear bathing suitSource:

#3 | Broad Shoulders

Another common concern when it comes to selecting a swimsuit is broad shoulders. If you have an inverted triangle body shape, you probably know this struggle. A halter neck style is an easy choice, as it softens the shoulders and makes it less pronounced. I have an athletic body shape, which means my shoulders and hips are about the same width, with no defined waist (like an hourglass body shape would have). I’ve found that asymmetrical necklines will help. It’s difficult to find, but a cap-sleeve swimsuit top is a great choice to help soften shoulders as well.

#4 | Flat Booty

When you don’t have a lot of shape in your behind, the goal is (of course) to build shape. You want to grab a swimsuit bottom that has ruching, or one that has a print or embellishment. A ruffle bottom also builds volume, similar to the small chest option. All of these options add some volume in a way that looks natural and not forced, and still very stylish.

#5 | Large Booty

If you have a bigger behind, you are going to want more coverage. This doesn’t mean overdoing it with coverage, but just to get something that covers enough to make you feel comfortable. (If you wear bottoms that have too much coverage, that can have the opposite effect and make your bum look larger.) A solid color bottom with a printed top works great as well, as the eye is drawn upwards, away from the areas you are self-conscious about.

bikini swimsuit for no waist womens body shape bathing suitsSource:

#6 | No Waist

Where are my fellow Spongebobs?? 😉 That’s what a troll called me and I think it’s hilarious. If you are like me and you have a rectangle body shape, there are options for you as well. I tend to prefer bikinis (specifically high-waisted bikini bottoms and a top with shoulder-building details) because I feel this makes it appear as though I have more of a waist.

Another great option is cutouts or belting at the waist like this swimsuit. Sharp cutouts will make the waist look more defined, and add the appearance of curves, which creates that hourglass figure. A waist belt or any waist-defining details on your swimsuit can also create a waist.

#7 | Love Handles

If you want to conceal your sides, I would suggest a bathing suit with a high-waisted bottom. Not only is this on-trend right now, but it also covers some areas that you are conscious about. A one-piece with built-in shapewear can help smooth lumps and bumps too!

#8 | Tummy

A tummy is, let’s face it, one of the more common problem areas, and the great news is… there are SO many options to help! Suits that cover up the tummy include the tankini, a suit with strategic ruching, any swimwear with shapewear like Miraclesuit, or a one-piece with a peplum. Another option …a faux-wrap front swimsuit!

#9 | Short Torso

What if it feels like you have no real estate between the bottom of your bust and your hips? If you are wearing a bikini, I would avoid tops with lots of fabric or straps under the bust. That will cut into that space. What you really want is for this space to appear maximized so your short torso is lengthened. You can also lengthen the upper body by wearing a top that extends upwards, not downwards, like a bikini top with ruffled shoulders. Keep in mind that the same rule applies to the bottoms. If you wear a high-waisted bottom, you will cut into your torso. A lower-rise bottom will create the illusion of more space.

perfect swimsuit bathing suit swimwear for women with shorter legs one piece with cutoutsSource:

#10 | Short Legs

If you have shorter legs, try one of the newest trends in swimwear, the high-cut, or French-cut, bottom. This swimsuit bottom is cut high so that your legs appear longer.

#11 | Wider Hips or Thighs

Fuller hips or thighs are a common concern, and there are many options out there. Boy shorts are one option, and you’d be surprised at all the fun styles. There are many cute boy shorts that cover the hips and make you appear slimmer. Swim skirts and swims dresses are also great for minimizing the hips, butt and thighs. Additionally, I’d always go with a solid color on your lower body if you want to make your hips and butt look smaller. Prints tend to add volume.

Some Of My Favorite Brands

Some of my favorite swimwear brands especially for women over 40 include: Becca, Karla Colletto, Miraclesuit, L*SPACE, and La Blanca.

These are all excellent brands that are really designed for a more mature woman, but the styles are still modern and sexy! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve ordered swimsuits, only to put them on and think… where’s the REST?? LOL. You know what I mean.

You CAN Find A Flattering Suit!

I hope this guide helps you find the best swimsuit for your body shape. (If you need help figuring out your body shape, be sure to watch my video here.) I strongly suggest skipping the whole ‘fitting room nightmare’ and carefully ordering a selection based on my tips above. Try the suits on in the privacy of your home to save your sanity and be patient with the process. You WILL find the perfect suit for your body.

You can subscribe to my weekly newsletter here to receive some incredible style resources including wardrobe basics checklists and closet organizing checklists!

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