The swimsuit review post is always the #1 fashion post of the year (traffic-wise, it’s up to almost 500,000 views now), but the problem is that it’s just one body (me) and it’s not like I can or want to shop from all the brands out there to review them. There were so many great recommendations in the comments for other suits for different body types, and a follow-up post felt very necessary. So I came up with an idea: I’d ask readers (and those close to EHD) if they wanted to review a swimsuit they love for the blog (even my team) and in exchange, I’d Venmo them $100 for their time. They just had to have a current suit that they LOVED and tell us why it makes them feel good, and of course, be willing to be on the blog and social.
Look at these beautiful women, that yes are also brave because regardless of your looks unless you are literally a model, putting a selfie on the internet requires true confidence and bravery. I am HERE FOR THIS. Seeing real suits on real bodies, hearing about how they fit, and what is so great about them will hopefully get us all closer to feeling comfortable and beautiful in a new or old suit this summer. Thank you, ladies. Let’s change swimsuit marketing one review at a time and hopefully, more companies will start putting a greater variety of real bodies in their suits (and clothes) and stop photoshopping. It helps literally no one.
Ok now let’s get to these gals!
The Colorful Bikinis With Some Support That Are Also Kinda Sexy (At High and Low Price Points)
From Jess: Yes, these are two different suits on my real body, in a fake spray tan (my first one ever (!) but after 16 months of being a vampire it was just the only way to get me to be “brave”… and the sadness I feel now that’s it’s fading is truly ridiculous). Anyway, here’s the story behind my two blue suits. Vitamin A (one of Em’s favorite swimsuit brands) sent a few of us suits to try-on. I was SO EXCITED because I’ve been dying to check them out! We also loved the idea of showcasing a great, sustainable brand on a few more shapes of bods. Buuut I thought I was getting a black suit so I bought that cutie on the left at Target and cut off the tags. But honestly, I love them both and if you want a blue suit here are two awesome options at two very different price points. The quality of the Vitamin A suit (on the left) is unmatched and the style of this combo is super classic. My 34D boobs feel very secure in the top too:) The bottoms are also good but I think are actually meant to be more of a high leg cut because I did have a slight “baggy butt” situation with how I have them on in this shot. Also, 14 is the largest size they have which I REALLY hope they change soon. In normal clothes, I’m a 10 to 12/30 in pants to give you an idea of the real sizing. Then my Target suit (on the right) is fun, textured (the material is ribbed) and the bottoms make me feel kinda sexy. After this past year, I didn’t think that feeling would ever come back. I was actually shocked that those bottoms don’t cut in and that those straps just lay nice on my hips. Highly recommend.
WARNING! It wasn’t until a few days later did I realize that my Target top and bottoms were slightly different blue hues. It’s truly very hard to tell, even in person. The reason is, the top is from the Xhilaration (their juniors line) and the bottoms are from the Shade & Shore (their adult line which is why I got a large and not an extra-large like you will see below). Here is the link for the Shade & Shore top if you for some reason want matching colors:). The Xhilaration one is just a teeny bit brighter which I like but they don’t have the same sexy bottoms available. UGH. So choose your own adventure.
For some reason, I was jonesing for a hot pink suit this year. I think I’m needing to be in happy colors in 2021. But after this spray tan, I think I might be getting a little too “GTL” minus the “G” (Jersey Shore throwback in case you forgot THE phrase of 2009/10… Gym, Tan, Laundry). But maybe I don’t care! The suit on the left is J. Crew (in Neon Flamingo) and I definitely like it. It’s not a home run for me but I like the support of the top and the color is super pretty. I don’t love the bottoms. The fabric looks a little too baggy but going down a size would for sure be too small. Also, the fabric is a little too thin for me. Now the Target suit on the right is my ideal pink hue for a swimsuit. It’s kinda that 80s/90s neon pink that makes me feel fun and very ready to be by a pool (she feverishly looks for Airbnbs with pools). The top is the same as the blue one. They do have pads but you can take them out which I normally do but didn’t mind them for this one. Also, the bottoms have a little V cut in the front which is a pretty cute small detail. FYI both of these are from the junior’s line and I don’t think there are bigger options in this color. But seriously Target has SO many suits that are great. Oh, I actually might even mix and match my blue and pink suits. I’m about to be WILD this summer (very much JK).
The Simple And Easy To Move Around In One Piece
Square Neck One Piece (size S)
From Ajai: I wanted a swimsuit with a simple design, but a bit of color. I’m a new mom, and I imagine going to the beach and pool this summer with my little one will be quite the workout, so I needed a suit I could move around in without having to constantly adjust it. I had a c-section, so two-piece swimsuits aren’t very comfortable for me just yet. This one-piece feels good up against my incision and I love the low back on it.
The Vintage & Classic Looking One Piece That Is Super Fun & Form Fitting
From Anita: I love this swimsuit so much because it’s comfortable and makes me feel confident! The combination of the stripes and ruching is just so flattering to the bust and tummy areas – and I love the classic, vintage, look! Who says a one-piece can’t be fun? When I’m shopping for a new swimsuit, I look for something that is going to make me feel my best, a suit that makes me feel confident in my own skin!
The Simple & Classic Black Two-Piece That Comes In A Variety of Sizes
Lightly Lined Twist-Front Bikini Top (size 36D) + Bottoms (not online, size L)
From Cristina: I purchased this swimsuit from Target recently and I love it. I like the simplicity of an all-black bathing suit and I feel like it’s slimming in the waist area because of the color. I also like that this particular top comes in a variety of sizes, which has always been an issue for me when buying swimsuits. This particular size top is a 36D and the bottoms are a size Large.
The Supportive Top With Great Coverage & A Fun Pattern Swim Skirt
From Diana: I like the top because it holds everything together in place in case I need to race after my boys in the pool. The bottom is the absolute best though… it covers my work-in-progress butt and the pattern camouflages my [belly] pouch! I feel cute and I’m comfortable.
The Best Bikinis (And Brand) For Big Chested Gals
Etna Bikini (size XL)
From Caitlin: After like, two years of recommending clothes and undergarments by writing, “I have 36F boobs and a big butt,” it feels kind of surreal to be like “AND HERE THEY ARE!” But now, please let me tell you about Andrea Iyamah (aka the only place I will be purchasing swimsuits for the rest of my life – also a Black-owned business!). The Caitlin of yore would have been feeling insecure about posting bikini pics at her highest-ever weight but the Caitlin in *THIS* swimsuit DOESN’T GIVE AN F. Like, uh, WHERE IS MY CABANA BOY? Where are my grapes???? Someone fan me!!! I love it – I’m very pale and the color doesn’t make me look like I’ve recently climbed out of an ice chest in a morgue. PLUS the detailing just feels so special and the top is really sturdy. This is definitely more of a “Vegas suit” (read: to be worn while you’re standing around or sitting in a hot tub) but it makes me feel really good. I got an XL top and XL bottom (which is supposed to be high-waisted, but I have a really long torso, so it tried to be high-waisted and just fell short). Highly recommended.
Yassa High Waist Bikini (size XL)
From Caitlin: (The slippers were an accident. And I guess my spare Birk, too. Woof.) In any case, I love this suit because my boobs are SECURE. I first discovered this brand through one of my favorite fashion influencers, @simimoonlight, who wore this exact suit in an IG post and I was like “WOW I WISH I LOOKED LIKE THAT AT THE BEACH.” Only caveat is that the top is a little difficult to get on (so many straps and components!) but it makes me feel awesome. The high-waisted bottom is SUPER high (it’s hard to find one that can cover my belly button) and I think you can tell from the back shot that my boobs are like…UP. They’re LOCKED AND LOADED. If you’re a curvier gal who has struggled finding something unique and fun, look no further than Andrea Iyamah – TBH I had never spent that much on a swimsuit before and now I’m like, “OH, YEAH, the quality is worth it.” So happy with them!
The Ultra Supportive One Piece That Is Comfortable & Stretchy In The Right Places
From Danielle: I have the pleasure of being tall and midsize (6′ tall and anywhere from 14-18 with a 36D bra size and purchased a size XL long if that helps anyone who will read this swimsuit roundup) and can relate to every woman everywhere in that finding a comfortable swimsuit that’s simultaneously cute is about as rare as stumbling across a $50 bill on the ground. If you do happen upon a lucky $50, it just so happens that’s all you’ll need to buy this suit. Allow me to introduce you to the Aerie Ribbed Tie Back One–Piece swimsuit. This is my favorite suit I’ve ever owned for 4 core reasons:
- It has built-in cups so you have the support you need without being obnoxiously compressive. It’s perfect for throwing on a flowy skirt or jean shorts to wear around town before you head to the beach/pool without feeling like you’re prepared for a swim meet.
- The fabric is truly the perfect amount of stretch and compression so you feel supported rather than the usual oscillation between feeling constricted or like you may as well be wearing a wet t-shirt.
- It has perfectly sized leg holes for my fellow distinguished derriere/thick-thighed ladies, meaning it’s very adaptable to the type of fit you like. Whether you want the suit pulled low over your hips and backside or up higher for an almost high-cut look, this suit can do it all. Few swimsuit situations are worse than being stuck in a wet suit all day while it squeezes your underbutt and/or legs.
- The tie back is a super cute way to zhush up the classic silhouette of this suit and it’s not just for show! You can tie it tighter or looser to better fit your shape.
The Bikini With Removable Straps That Is Ideal For Tanning
From Sarah: This bikini is my favorite two-piece because it highlights all my glorious fat. As someone who hid their fat belly for years (26 to be exact), I ADORE the way the sun warms it up in the summer. I also appreciate that I can remove the straps and even out my tan. Plus, with my breasts being two different sizes this is the only bikini top I own that fits perfectly.
The Unexpectedly Sexy One Piece With An Open Back
Leah One Piece (size 14)
From Ryann: I will forever love a red one-piece and yes I do feel very Baywatch in this in the best way. It almost looks like I photoshopped the color but I promise I did not — it really is that bright and showstopping in person. This is definitely a swimsuit I would wear on vacation when I know I won’t be running around or doing rigorous activities (but honestly, I think I could have sized down to a size 12). It has a low scoop back that is very sexy and there is no shelf support so it’s not a sport-friendly suit, but damn does it look good and make me feel good. The fabric also feels incredible (hence the high price point) and it doesn’t cut in on the thighs which is so nice. This is a swimsuit I will be pulling out on my honeymoon for sure.
The Super Affordable Two-Piece That Comes In SO Many Patterns
From Mackenzie: You can buy this one on Amazon and it’s only $26 and comes in all different kinds of prints. It’s so flattering! I’m a 5′ 10″ and quite rectangular in body shape – but this made me feel so pretty and curvy in the right spots! Highly recommend!
The Adjustable One-Piece With A Shelf Bra For Extra Support
From Kelsey: My sister approached a girl on Miami Beach to ask her where she got this suit — she knew it would look good on us and she wasn’t wrong. Aside from the super fun and summery color, this suit is adjustable! With ties in the back that control the height and width of the suit, it’s easy to make this work well for my body. There are also ties at the bottom of each side to adjust the leg rise/coverage. It includes a shelf bra for extra support and I love that I still feel sexy shaking skin but am supported well enough to hang at the beach with my kids!
The Bikini Top With Great Support But No Padding (That Is Great For Small Chests)
From Mallory: When I shop for swimsuits I often make it a goal to find tops that make it seem like I have more boobage than I actually have. It’s harder than it seems because if you get one of those pushup suits with padding then there’s a highly awkward gap that can occur between the suit and your actual chest which is not ideal in my personal opinion. I’m highly in love with this top from Vitamin A because it’s not only VERY cute, but it has an underwire without a bunch of uncomfortable and awkward-looking padding. The material is seriously silky smooth and good quality while also being super thin but not see-through… it’s just very very comfortable and good. Another thing I look for in a suit is when I can buy different sizes in the tops and bottoms (I usually need a medium on the bottom and a small on top), and since I could choose my size for each, they fit perfectly. I 10/10 recommend this suit, but size up if you want more coverage (especially in the bottoms because they can definitely run small) this is a 4 top and an 8 bottom for reference.
The High Waisted Bottoms That Don’t Bunch Up
From Heather: I bought my first two-piece suit since I’ve had my two kids, and here I am sending pictures of myself in it across the internet. I’ve found it very hard to find simple high-waisted bottoms that weren’t ruched to death or otherwise bulky. I feel great in this suit!
The Reversible & Adjustable One Piece
From Hana: I feel like I have a true pear-shaped body. With a very small chest and a larger bottom, making one-pieces difficult sometimes. This top is completely adjustable and fits incredibly well. Also, the suit is completely reversible!
The Supportive & Modest Suit With A Built In Bra
From Brittney: I looove this suit because as a mom of a preschooler, I need both support and coverage to run after her, and this has a built-in banded bra. I also have thick thighs, and I love that the romper accentuates them (while also stopping any thigh rub chafing!). Lastly, I love that it has pockets! So I can keep our sunscreen stick or my phone in my pocket poolside.
The High Waist Stripe Bikini With Great Coverage
From Elizabeth: As a mom of two who is about to turn 41 years old, I couldn’t believe how much I liked this striped bikini! The high waist is comfortable and the coverage is great. I got a small in the top and tried both the small and the medium bottom but decided to keep the small. Thanks for helping me get out of my comfort zone!
The Comfortable & Modest Enough To Wear In Front Of In-Laws Bikini (That’s Still VERY Cute)
From Keyanna: Okay, so in theory this suit probably isn’t the best option for sunbathing by the pool (because who wants cap sleeve tan lines?) but, I love how stylish it looks. This is definitely a suit I would feel comfortable wearing around my in-laws –modest, but cute. Although “support” is not necessarily something I have to worry about, the top is padded and gives me a little bit of lift. And the ruched knot detail gives the illusion of more cleavage, which if you’re a member of the itty bitty titty committee like myself, that’s a plus! I have a long torso and short legs (eye roll) so I like how the high-waisted bottoms make my legs look longer and the front overlay detail adds a little compression and added coverage to the tummy.
The One Piece That Shows Some Skin And Fits Right On Long Torsos
From Kristin: My name is Kristin and this is my new favorite swimsuit. It is the Aerie wrap swimsuit. I’m a mom of 4 and have parts of my body I’m still learning to love, like my tummy. I also don’t feel comfortable in a bikini. This swimsuit is a one-piece but looks like a high-waisted two-piece, so I can highlight what I am confident about! It also works with my tall 5’9” frame and it’s the perfect amount of booby, haha. So flattering on every shape! I tell everyone about this suit!
The Top That Looks & Fits Like A Bra
From Adrea: Since I am small busted, I wanted a suit that fits well in the top and does not gape. I ordered the J.Crew (on the left) because the top looked like a bra and you can order the top in Bra sizes (Genius Points). The fit feels like an underwire bra which I am used to. The suit is a simple, classic look which I loved. The bottoms are a lil cheeky but my husband begged me to get something a bit sexier this year – this is still wearable with in-laws and husband-approved.
The Super Cute Swim Skirt & One Shoulder Top
From Jana: I LOVE my suit from Albion fit! I love to wear swim skirts but they sometimes aren’t as flattering. I feel so confident in this! I never ever wear two-piece suits and feel like a million bucks. Super high quality and confidence guaranteed! My tiny shadow loves it too
The Two-Piece Great For Chasing Around Toddlers
From Tara: Feeling beach ready in my new suit! Loving the cute style of this suit but still feel covered and comfortable. Great for chasing my toddlers around the pool or down the beach. It has extra support in the top to keep you secure. The lemons are so adorable and unique. Can’t wait for pool season this year!
Two One-Pieces That Give The Illusion Of Curves
From Marie: I like this suit (on the left) because it is a simpler/sportier version of the trendy monokini style that is flattering on my body type. I am fairly rectangular shaped with little difference between my waist and hips, but this suit gives the illusion of a little more curve. It also has good coverage, which is necessary when I’m playing on the beach alongside my kids and protects more of my skin from the sun.
I like this suit (on the right) because it’s a flattering one-piece that actually makes me feel really sexy while still having extremely small boobs (32A). The back is fun with some ruffles and intricate ties. I also love the ruffles on the front as they hide that annoying “armpit fat”.
The Modest, Comfortable, & Super Cute Suit That Is Size-Inclusive
From Tiffany: I am a currrrrvy girl and finding a swimsuit I feel good and comfortable and confident is the hardest thing for me. In fact, last year I didn’t swim at all because I didn’t have a swimsuit I was comfortable in. FAST FORWARD to this year and the brand Honeymark! Not only is the owner the most darling person I have ever seen, she’s made her line super size-inclusive and perfect for me. For anyone. This swim romper is super modest, comfy, and darling. Every single thing on her site is! I’ve never spent as much money on anything as I did this swimsuit. Not even my wedding dress (honestly) and I’m so excited to play at the splash pad and play in the swimming pool and at the beach in this little thing!
The One-Pieces That Offer Great Coverage
From Bryn: The LandsEnd suit (on the left) is great quality and full bum coverage. I like that the front zipper locks in place, so I can pull it down for a little bit of cleavage to counteract all the coverage elsewhere. Sewn-in cups mean I don’t have to wear a bikini top under a rash guard, so that’s a plus for me. I wish the legs were slightly higher cut, but I love this pattern combo.
The second suit (on the right) is from Amazon. I’ve owned it in blue and now pink. This is my favorite suit to wear to the beach or lake because I won’t be mad if it gets ruined. My blue one got sun-faded after I left it on the balcony at a beach rental and I was sad, but honestly, didn’t care much because of the price point of this suit. I sometimes pull the one-shoulder strap down and tuck it in for a different look. Quality is fine (it hides imperfections well), but this isn’t a suit that can last for seasons and seasons like the LandsEnd suits or J.Crew suits.
The Active & Body Contouring One Piece
From Ashlea: This is one of my favorite swimsuits because I feel like it fits well, it doesn’t cut into my butt and I feel like it is body contouring around the belly area. I have two boys that like to put on my shirt and so it’s nice that this is also high enough for that
The “Sisterhood of the Traveling Bikini”
From Sarah: This is my YouSwim bikini. It’s a DREAM COME TRUE. YouSwim is based in England and designs suits that fit 7 sizes! No joke. People size 2-14 will fit glamorously in this suit without slippage. The material is super comfy and stretchy, and has a ribbed detail to add dimension. Plus, all their packaging is sustainable and recyclable!
Full transparency, I hadn’t worn a bikini in 5 years before I tried this one. Now, I’m ready to buy out all the stock in every color. I’ve never felt so beautiful while showing so much skin. It’s pricy, but you’re paying for a suit that changes right along with your body—even through pregnancy! My roommate is a size 2 and I’m a size 6/8, and truly, it fits us both super well. (Sisterhood of the traveling swimsuit? Anyone?)
The different colors go in and out of stock often, but the customer service is great and I never have to wait too long before what I’m looking for is back. The style I’m wearing is the Aplomb high-waisted two-piece in Garnet, but all their style options have the same inclusive sizing.
The Affordable Bikini For Tall Athletic Body Types
From Daisy: I’m the tall (5’9″), athletic body type and not super curvy, but I think this swimsuit is very flattering on many body types. I’ve never bought a swimsuit at Target before but it was very affordable and, I have to say, actually better quality than many of the more expensive swimsuits I’ve had. It’s a beautiful color on all skin types, feels very secure top and bottom, and also comes with straps you can attach to the bandeau for even more support.
Huge thanks again to all these beautiful and confident ladies for contributing to this post. We hope it helps you feel amazing in whatever you chose to put on your body this summer. xx
The post Another Swimsuit Review: This Time On 27 Different Women With Different Bodies & Swimwear Needs appeared first on Emily Henderson.