Lifestyle » Style & Beauty » Vol. 16

Don’t Panic ~ Your Swimsuit Can Be Your Friend

By Lynn N. Capri

Summer has arrived (finally!), and that means it’s the one time of year when shopping becomes a little less pleasurable, our excursions to the mall a little less enthusiastic ~ and that’s because we are on a quest for That Bathing Suit…the One that supports, hides, compliments, slims, doesn’t become totally transparent when it hits the water, and doesn’t make us look like something out of a floral display.

Fortunately, the phrase “middle ages woman” no longer means “dull and dowdy woman,” so there are tons of very flattering options out there. We can pretty much ignore our age and choose a swimsuit that is flattering to our shape and confidence level (a prime example of this is actor Helen Mirren, who was photographed at the age of 62 wearing a skimpy red bikini while on vacation – not the normal choice of swimwear for the mature woman, but she looked toned, stunning, and completely at ease showing a lot of glowing skin).

Now I’m not saying all women over 60 should opt for red (or any other color!) bikinis, but the point is that mature women today want to look sexy and confident and swimwear for our demographic is starting to reflect this trend.

And as always, the old adage stands: accentuate the positive and downplay (or even hide completely, when possible), the negative.

Here are a few tips to help you decide on your choice of swimwear:

• Most mature women should avoid bikinis and opt for one piece swimsuits or tankinis, as these do tend to stylish but not too trendy

• If you have a larger bust, choose styles that flatter that area and detract from the tummy area. Try swimsuits with patterned tops and plain bottoms, or wrap over styles that hide the tummy and accentuate the bust.

• Buy a good quality swimsuit that contains Lycra to help your swimsuit maintain its shape and also to offer you more support. If you spend the money on a really good suit, it may just serve you well for many years to come.

• If you’re a little flabbier than you like around the middle, another good choice is a tankini, as these overlap the briefs and help disguise your tummy. Also, the tops and bottoms can be purchased in different sizes, making them very versatile. Monochromatic is best, as it gives a nice long, uninterrupted line to your torso

• Ladies, don’t even think about buying a swimsuit without built-in cups ~ nothing is more unattractive than when “the girls” sag.

• If you’re heavy around the leg area, try a swimsuit with an attached skirt (or even a separate Lycra wrap skirt that you can wear with a plain suit ~ many department stores sell them in the swimsuit department) or go for a boy leg style which is flattering to the figure.

• If you’re truly unhappy with/self-conscious about your body (which we encourage you not to be!), then invest in a top of the line “miracle” suit. These are swimsuits that contain an enormous amount of clever styling and lots of Lycra to make you look instantly slimmer and firmer.

• And if you are purchasing a suit solely for those times when you are submerged in water and would prefer not to show much skin at all poolside, on the beach, or even walking to the car after a day at the ocean, buy a sarong or even a full cover-up made from lightweight, beachy-colored material. Cover-ups are made from great fabrics these days ~ pretty, breathable, translucent but not transparent, and light enough to pull off a very summery look that’s still perfectly appropriate for the beach.

Now, these suggestions are all well and good, but really, what’s most important when you dress for the beach is that you are comfortable, confident, and wearing appropriate protection from the sun!

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