bathing beauty

Image from http://www.polyvore.com/bathing_beauty/set?id=51563525

It almost seems cliche to write about h0w much women hate trying on bathing suits. But really, this task cannot be understated.

I already did a bathing beauty post last summer on this topic, but have been asked three times this week to offer some guidance on how to make this essential summer purchase. Plus, I was inspired by DC Celine’s recent bathing suit buying experience. So while I’m the worst person to give bathing suit shopping advice (after all, as you can read in last summer’s post, I will wear the same hated suit for years in a row just to avoid having to buy another hated suit) I will attempt to provide some direction to those destined for a pool or a beach this summer.

First of all, if you need a suit, and you find one you like, buy it right away. I failed to learn this lesson last summer. Two weeks ago, I had three different bathing suit options in my electronic J. Crew shopping cart, but I was hemming and hawing over sizes, colors and whether or not I can get away with a bikini. J. Crew decided for me, since as of this morning, the green polka dot bikini pictured above is no longer in stock in my size. The green and navy stripped one-piece is backordered until August. The J. Crew version of the pictured green Norma Kamali (a dream purchase I would only make if I planned to spend the summer on the French Riviera) is no longer available in a color I want, and alternative colors aren’t available until, you guessed it, August.

The moral of the story is: buy your suit now.

My other advice is to consider what level of activity you plan to do in said bathing suit. Strapless is good for working on the perfect tan but maybe not for playing with active kids in the water.

Obviously, level of coverage is important as well. I happen to belong to a pool frequented by a number of professional contacts, thus you won’t find me in super revealing styles. But if your pool and/or beach is the hot spot for singles, by all means, opt for the string bikini.

If you can’t find what you are looking for, take your search beyond the usual places. I found last summer’s suit at Zappos, and had delivered next day to destination number two of my New England vacation (too late for a day on the beach in Ipswich but just in time for the pool in Maine).

The bottom line is only you are going to know whether a certain suit works for you, and it may take some trial and error to find the right one. If I find the perfect suit this summer, I plan to buy it in multiple colors so that maybe I can make it another five years before having to undertake this arduous process again.

Unless, of course, I get an offer for that Norma Kamali-worthy summer on the Riviera.

Thanks to Alison Gary of Wardrobe Oxygen for teaching me how to make collages for my blog. You will see more images in my posts thanks to her creativity and willingness to share.

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One thought on “bathing beauty”

  1. Loved my ruched bathing suit, but it’s basically strapless and I’ve had more than one embarrassing moment. I was really attracted to that navy / green striped one, myself. Didn’t even investigate it enough to find out it was backordered. I do like that suits are going “retro”, i.e. more coverage without looking like one’s mom.

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