Bikini Body Ready!
I read the sign in silence and lowered my eyes.
For a very long time, I believed I didn’t have a bikini body. I am an average height woman, with not so average measurements. I had struggled to define myself, “plus size”, “large”, “chubby”. Nothing really felt right. I knew I didn’t have a swimsuit body. I knew I didn’t have a summer body.
But then I found, The Suit.
The one bikini suit to rule them all. The Fatkini. And she was named ‘Karbara’.
The inherent skimpiness of swimwear wasn’t a part of this suit. It looked like the right size, the perfect color (because screw you, black IS slimming), and offered adequate support — which you know is invaluable when it comes to feeling confident and comfortable.
And even though body empowerment was at an all-time high, I get that not every plus-size woman is a fan of the bikini or Fatkini. If you are though, let me tell you the three important things I kept in mind while shopping for mine…
1. It doesn’t have to be a Fakini
Not feeling the two-piece look? Say no more. This is about you feeling the most comfortable in your own skin. So don’t worry what all the other Instagram influencers are saying. If you don’t want it all to hang out (because it might), there’s no need to do otherwise.
Look for a one piece that you find shines as bright as your personality. Some of my favorite bathing suits have been one pieces that I still get compliments on it Even with a one piece I found a wide range of ones that showed just a little skin, a lot of skin, or hugged my curves oh-so-tight! Wear what works for you and no one else.
2. Dress rehearsal at home
If you’re terrified like I was, that there would be a possibility of spillage, (oh the spillage my boobs saw that first summer…), find one you like and then wear it around the house. I did a battery of self-test: jumping on my bed, running around chasing my dog in the backyard, talking to my friend on the phone while cooking, and even showering — so I could know what it looked like wet, before taking it out for beach patrol. This allowed me some adjustments like a bathing suit tunic, shortening straps, seeing where to shave, and more before I ever hit prime time.
I was thankful because I know there could’ve been some viral worthy accidents ready to happy before I simulated waves crashing into me like I did jumping on my bed.
3. Find inspiration
I had already seen my Fatkini online before I went to view it in person. Research the suit beyond the retailer’s website. I wanted to see what other real women like me had thought of the bathing suit. I read forums, reviews, and looked at more candid photos of the bathing suit I was curious about. It helped me get the scoop and prepare to enjoy my new bathing suit to the fullest.
Quick tips: Consider ordering a size up, as their material can be smaller fitting, focus on fit – if it’s comfortable that’s what is most important, discover your silhouette because there are. I prefer the high-waisted bottoms.
Where to purchase plus size suits
As larger sizes are offered in more places, we’re no longer stuck with only local options. Shop around online from the comfort of your home for a suit, or look online like I did before going in-person. Either way, save yourself some time and plan ahead. I enjoy suits from Adore Me, dresslily, LANDS’ END, BloomBloom, ROSEGAL, and more places. Let your fingers do the walking and let your eyes enjoy the beautiful visuals.
There’s a range of price points from very affordable, mid-range, and oh-my-god-this-counts-as-a-birthday-gift to me, find your desired price bracket and I bet you’ll be surprised at how much you can find.
It’s time to embrace your curves and at least try bikini/Fatkini/bathing suit! And after you purchase your flattering plus-size swimsuit for your body, it’s important to care for it properly. Here are some of the best ways to keep your suit looking its best:
- Think of the purpose. Are you catching some rays? Swimming? Going to be in hot tubs? Wearing the right suit for the right activity will keep them looking great over time.
- Buy more than one suit. Alternate swimsuits daily. That way they will give your bathing suits time to dry and re-shape properly.
- Keep em’ clean. As often as possible rinse out your suit. Chlorine and salt water are corrosive, so that means your suit will break down eventually. Rinsing them will extend the life of them for longer wear. and they will wear through your suit over time.
Ultimately, every ‘body’ is a bikini body…
…you just have to put a bikini on it. Wherever you fall on the size spectrum, just know there are styles out there — in a range of colors, prints, and silhouettes — that are tailored to your style.
The fitness industry would have you believe that there’s only one type of “attractive summer body” but that shouldn’t be the only message that’s out there. Having a “bikini body” is more than appearance, it’s functionality and mental health benefits of exercise, right now is the time to bring it to the forefront.
Cherish a new (or continued) experience to better prepare yourself for all the water related activities you want to do this summer, and look good when doing it!
Credits: Feature image courtesy of allure.com