2018 Swimwear for All Shapes and Sizes

If you’re looking for swimwear that covers your “assets,” this year’s selection offers a tempting array of swimsuits for all figure types.

By Stacia Friedman


Mix & Match

The old two-piece bathing suit has evolved into mix and match tankini tops and bottoms that solve a myriad of problems. Don’t be fooled by the name. There’s nothing “bikinish” about tankinis, swimsuit tops that cover midriffs, tummies and hips. Too bosomy? Flat chested? Midriff bulge? Muffin top? Hippy? Short-waisted? Long torso? There’s a tankini top that will camouflage your trouble spots and emphasize your positive attributes in regular and plus sizes, at all price points.

(Above left to right) Let’s start with Miraclesuit-So-Riche-Marina, an underwired tankini in red, Peacock Blue or black. This sexy top draws attention to your decollate while slimming your midriff with tummy-control lining and strategic draping. $106 at Macy’s. For a more demure top, consider Miraclesuit Taylor Racerback Tankini in blue, Samba Coral and black. $114. Or go Hollywood with Profile by Gottex Hollywood Halter Tankini in black, blue or fuchsia with white trim. The deep V-neckline and empire waist trim pull the eyes up while the midriff ruching sucks the tummy in. $94, also at Macy’s.

(Above) All of these tankini tops may be paired with your choice of swim briefs, swim shorts or swim skirts. Love your thighs? Go for briefs. Hate ’em? Try shorts. If it’s a love/hate thing, consider swim skirts which come in a variety of styles, including straight, flared, slit and sarong. All comfy, stylish and at Macy’s, starting at $54.

(Above left to right) You’ll find the exact same array of tankini tops and bottoms at Target for much less. Our favorites? Aqua Green’s Tiered Plus Size Tankini in black and pink floral print as well as a wide array of other prints and solid colors, $32.99. (Regular sizes, $29.99) Surfside’s Medallion Blouson Tankini  in multi-color design on black, plus size only, $34.99.  Sea Angel Plus Size Sarong Swim Skirt with adjustable ruching, in black (right), $29.99. (Regular size swim skirts starting at $22.99.)


One-Piece Wonders

If you are small breasted and pear-shaped like many women, look for a one-piece swimsuit that draws the eye up. (Below left) We love Magicsuit’s Natalie which captured one of the hottest trends, the off-the-shoulder look, combined with bosom-enhancing and tummy trimming ruching in blue-grey. With removable soft cups. This suit is so eye-catching, we think you’ll want to wear it with skinny jeans and wedge heels.

(Above center) Another trending look that flatters pear-shaped figures is ruffles. Check out Profile by Gottex Ruffled Straps which combines off-the-shoulder flirtatiousness with secure straps in stunning black and white. With side ruching, molded cups and low back. $128 at Bloomingdales.

(Above right) Want to lose 10 pounds in 10 seconds? Slip into Miraclesuit Marais, a Grecian-draped swimsuit with an oooh-la-la neckline, and a skirt that falls just below the hipline. In regular and plus size in Eggplant, Lagoon Blue or black. $182 at Macy’s.

(Far left) There are miracles and there is magic! We love Magicsuit’s soft, flowing Brynn Allover Slimming Swimdress which provides complete coverage, underwiring, along with a flirty asymmetrical drawstring to lift the hemline up (or not). In black. $172. Also at Macy’s.

(Left) Upper arm flab? Consider a swim dress with sleeves. Shape Solver Zen Garden Fly-a-way Swim Dress turns your most flattering dress style into swimwear. Deep-V neck, scoop back, elbow length sleeves, empire waist and an A-line skirt that flutters to reveal a classic body-hugging swimsuit underneath. It comes in a floral pattern of blues or lavender and rose. $139 at Bloomingdales.

Sexy Illusions

(Above left to right) The newest swimsuits take their cues from the 1970s when mesh inserts revealed as much as the law allowed. If you dare, try Aqua Green’s Mesh Inset One Piece, a devilish combo of mesh and strategically draped fabric, offering glimpses of decollate and waistline. It’s deceptively high neckline belies a transparent inset that plunges low while offering full coverage down below. In black. At $39.99 at Target. (Psst! The same exact style, Miraclesuit’s Solid Palma Ruched One Piece Swimsuit, will set you back $166 at Bloomies.)

Same story, different tune. Dreamsuit by Miracle Brands Slimming Control Mesh High Neck Swimsuit. This time, the mesh is more discrete, offering just a peak of waistline and total coverage of breasts with keyhole back in black. $64.99 at Target.

Retro Suits

There’s a certain sex appeal to swimsuits that signal a bygone era. Whether you wear regular or plus size, consider the coy, throw-back styles offer by Unique Vintage. (Above left to right) Their Esther Williams Rockabilly Swimdress has it all! A low-cut halter top, slimming shirred midriff and swingy skirt in a luscious Black Cherry print. $88. Marilyn Monroe would’ve loved Unique Vintage’s Mansfield Halter Swimsuit, a 1950’s polka dot print in black, navy or red with a sweetheart halter neckline, keyhole back, and ruching from top to bottom. On sale for $55.

At Unique Vintage, plus isn’t a size. It’s an attitude. The lifeguard will lose his whistle when you stroll by in their Zip Up One Piece, a body-hugging swimsuit that’s all covered up but unzips down to there! With frilled cap sleeves and slimming mid-section ruching. In black. Sizes 6-18. $98.

Mastectomy Suits

While many swimwear shops offer bathing suits appropriate for women with mastectomies, only Lands’ End offers a wide selection online with no obligation and no charge for returns. Their mastectomy suits have a higher neckline and armholes, plus sewn-in soft cups and prosthesis pockets. Available in all sizes, including regular, petite, plus, long and long plus. Try on an array of flattering styles in the privacy of your home!

(Above left and center) A curvaceous figure comes inside every Lands’ End’s Slender Tunic with Tummy Control. A sweetheart neckline adds allure to this artfully draped swimdress with slimming asymmetric shirring across the tummy and a keyhole back. The drapey overlay minimizes hips and provides coverage without a full skirt. With UPF 50 sun protection in Dark Purple Grape or black. $119. (With special offer, $83.30) Also available in Black Ombre Palm, a tropical asymmetric print of brilliant blue palm leaves on black. $129. (Special offer, $90.30)

(Above right) Lands’ End’s mastectomy swimwear includes mix and match tankini tops and bottoms. We like their Squareneck Tankini in Deep Sea Jungle, a vibrant floral print of fuchsia, green and gold on a dark blue ground. Available with or without Tummy Control. Also in White or Black Deco Floral, a bright print of orange and lilac on white. Underwired with removable pads. Pair with your choice of briefs, shorts or swim skirt. $59. 95. Now $41.97.

Whether you choose a tankini or one-piece, if you like the way it accentuates your “positives,” consider extending its life beyond the beach or pool. Pair it with jeans, capris or a gauzy black maxi skirt and wedge heels. Those black mesh numbers will heat up any summer night!

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Stacia Friedman is an award-winning Philadelphia-based journalist who writes on health and lifestyle for regional and national magazines. She also contributes humorous essays to NewsWorks.org and PurpleClover.com.

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