Mom swimwear: Go retro (at any price point)
June 27, 2011
Oh I always look like this while sunning myself poolside... don't you?
Ah, swimwear season. Majority of the moms I know aren't big fans of donning a swimsuit. If it's not their weight they are worried about, it's their postpartum tummy, their stretch marks, their varicose veins, or just the worry of what is appropriate for a modest mom to wear to the public pool.
I, myself, am focused on modesty; I feel almost naked in a swimsuit and just feel odd wearing (essentially) my underwear in public. For that reason, last summer I purchased a tankini with matching boyshort from J.Crew as soon as it went on sale. It's something I feel comfortable in, and since I don't go swimming very often, it's something I plan to have for a while. It cost just shy of $100, but it was worth every penny.
If you are equally as worried about swim season, don't be! I've found some great options for swimwear that will make you feel comfortable in your skin thanks to the retro swimwear trend.
Retro swimwear is the perfect choice for a modern, fashionable mom. Designers like Nanette Lepore brought retro to the runway this summer due to a trend in increased femininity. “There’s a real feminine moment happening in fashion right now, and it’s great to be able to capture that,” said Lepore (La Times Blog, May, 3, 2011)
Retro swimwear is great at displaying all the right curves, covering you up, and maintaining your modesty. Plus, these looks reminiscent of the '40s and '50s are adorable!
Here are some of my top picks; each at a different price point. Just remember, your comfort is worth every penny, so don't necessarily skimp on this purchase. Cheap suits will only last you one season (the quality will deteriorate over time, and by next summer when you pull it out of the drawer, you'll realize it's time for another suit). Side note: To make your purchase last longer, rinse or (ideally) wash your swimsuit after each use. Allowing it to sit in a wet ball soaked in chlorine will literally deteriorate the fabric.
Scroll through these retro swimsuits to find the right one for your body type (there's something for everybody!).
Retro Plus Size:
If you're a plus-size girl, consider this polka dot one-piece from ModCloth. The ruching will flatter your tummy, covering up flaws, and the lowcut legs will give you great curves and minimize your thighs. If you're not crazy about polka dots, ModCloth.com has several plus-size options, with suits in solid colors and patterns.
The Retro Save (for most body types):
Target 2 pc. Stripe Tankini Swimsuit $17.99 (top), $14.99 (bottom)
This retro striped swimsuit from Target is a great deal at under $35 for both pieces. The retro bandeau top tankini offers coverage & style. The gold stripes add modern flair (plus a bit of a '70s feel, no?). This suit will cover your entire midsection so you'll feel comfortable.
The Retro Splurge (for all body types):
If you are ready to splurge for quality and fit, I would go with this retro one-piece from Carmen Marc Valvo. It is shirred for a flattering fit, fully lined, has full bottom coverage, and comes with removable soft cups. You'll feel comfortable and sexy in this perfectly fitting suit. It comes in three colors.
Retro for Small Busts:
I love this retro strawberry print ruffle suit from Urban Outfitters. It's a bustier style with reinforced seams down the front, which will enhance your curves and give you great shape. This swimsuit got great reviews on their website, although it is suggested for girls with smaller chests because there's not a ton of support up top.
Retro for Big Busts:
Coco Rave Swimsuit, Bra-Sized One-Piece Swimdress $56.99 (sale)
This ruffled swimsuit will give you great coverage and great support. The ruffled lowcut legs will cover thighs, while the ruched sideseams will enhance your curves. With adjustable straps, bust seams, and removable soft cups, this swimsuit will support larger busts as well (plus you order it in your bra size, so it's sure to fit up top).
This retro halter one-piece has a gorgeous floral pattern and is great for covering up a postpartum tummy! The ruching through the midsection will camouflage your flaws, and the lowcut legs will minimize thighs. It also contains boning to ensure you show your best curves.
The Retro Bikini:
If you're the brave mom ready to head out in a bikini, try this retro style. The full-coverage bottoms have cross-gathering to help minimize any flaws. The halter provides great coverage and support as well, with a flirty ruffle bust to boot. It doesn't really get much cuter or more affordable!