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With a PHD in fashion, a hair ambassadorship with L’Oréal Paris and a global audience, Victoria is the lady behind the award-winning fashion, travel and beauty blog, Inthefrow.

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The Ultimate Swimwear Guide for 2018

19/02/18

The Best Swimwear For Your Shape

Location: Soneva Jani Resort, Maldives
Whether you’re a trend lover or you enjoy a classic, minimalist wardrobe, all rules are seemingly out the window when it comes to swimwear. We know our personal style so well that choosing perfectly flattering denim, the best length of dress for us or the colour palette that heightens our confidence, seem to be relatively easy tasks. Swimwear on the other hand, can leave you suddenly feeling like a fish out of water – all puns intended. So how do we choose the right swim style and leave ourselves feeling just as confident beside the pool, as we do wearing our favourite, well loved, everyday pieces?

When the time comes and you decide it’s time to invest in some new swimwear, it can be hard to know where to start. From bikini to one piece, from sporty to sexy, from retro to modern and don’t even get me started on how much support you might need both up top and down below – it can be daunting. After posting a few bikini pictures over on Instagram recenty, following a heavenly trip to the Maldives, *pinch me!* a few people messaged me to ask how I chose from so many styles and still managed to feel confident. The truth is there’s 2 answers.

Firstly I’ve learned over the years that we’re all different and that’s beautiful – confidence definitely starts from within, a topic I recently took on here. And secondly? Making sure I choose the pieces that I think will flatter the parts of me I’d like to try and enhance. Combining both my love of fashion and a healthy mindset means I’ll rock my swimwear and feel as confident as possible while doing so. As for finding the right swim for your shape? Here’s my guide to choosing the cuts, styles and patterns that will flatter us all!

THE HIGH CUT ONE PIECE

A style definitely not for the faint of heart – but so great for lengthening legs and making you appear taller, without the need to wear heels round the pool! If you want to add a few inches to your height, without much effort at all, then a high cut swimsuit is the way to go, especially if it’s a one piece. The eye will be drawn to the top of the cut (a few inches higher than your actual leg height) and will make you appear to have pins that would rival any supermodel. Choose a swim in a solid colour, to continue to draw the eye upwards but be wary that a high cut leg will often mean more bum cheek will be on show, than if you were to choose a more classic one piece. Another bonus to emphasising your leg length, especially in a one piece, is the extra coverage across the stomach if a bikini is not your go to pick. The one piece definitely isn’t boring any more! Unfortunately this pink striped beauty from Revolve is now sold out but there are some more of my favourites below.

THE ADJUSTABLE BIKINI

It may sound like a broad term, but an adjustable bikini can be a life saver! The amount of times I have shopped online for swimwear and found that the straps don’t adjust, the back has a single clasp or the halter doesn’t tie – it’s just something I personally dislike. I love a bikini that adjusts with me and my shape, and can be altered so I can definitely wear it more than once. Between being on my period and needing to adjust the back strap to accommodate my chest, to being slimmer or curvier the next time I pack for my holidays – an adjustable bikini is a great investment piece. From enhancing your bust with a halter style tie, to adding curves and balancing your figure with a tie side bottom – bikinis like this L*Space one can really boost your confidence.

THE SPORTY ONE PIECE

One of my favourite types of swimwear because of the brands that come to mind – Roxy, L*Space, Jets, Seafolly etc. Think supportive, rash vests, fun zip details and great coverage while still looking on trend and feeling uber confident. Easy to transition from the beach, to the pool, to the surf, without worrying about the right support. Often a great cut for boosting your bust with an added zip to the front but also awesome if you want a little extra coverage, for either sun protection or a little modesty. I love this striped number from Heidi Klein – the thicker straps give me some extra support, while the gold zip detail and racer back add a little sexiness to the choice.

THE CUT OUT SWIMSUIT

When I think of a cutout swimsuit, I think of adding a unique, trend led piece to my holiday wardrobe. Not always a piece that will see me through numerous holidays over the years, but always a swimsuit that makes a statement – no matter what the destination. Cutout one pieces, although a little terrifying initially, can definitely be flattering if chosen to flatter your personal shape. Don’t choose cutouts across the stomach if your other swimwear aims to flatten here, but do choose cut outs at the waist if you want to enhance your curves. Similarly don’t choose cutouts across the chest if you need more support, but do choose cutouts at the hips if you want to lengthen your legs. I love this floral swim from River Island with it’s cutout above the stomach and bandeau top.

THE SPORTY BIKINI

The sporty bikini is a great addition for your suitcase, if you have a smaller chest, a lot like me. You won’t necessarily find a lot of support, as a more athletic style top will usually be a bralette style and often lacks an underwire. Choosing a style with padding will counteract the lack of underwire and help to give that support you may be looking for. More sporty bikinis are often teamed with a ‘cheeky’ bottom, that will lengthen the leg, or a full hipster style that will enhance and balance out your curves (offering more coverage than the previous) but may not sit and flatter curvier hips. This bralette style bikini from Melissa Odabash has a flattering peek-a-boo across the chest and a high cut leg to lengthen pins.

THE TRIANGLE BIKINI

The triangle bikini is another great option for adjustable coverage and style. Quite often found in mix ‘n’ match sets on retailers like ASOS, with multiple bottom options and the ability to adjust the cups placement. This offers a great opportunity to enhance a smaller chest or to minimise cleavage on a fuller chest – multiple ways to boost your confidence! The string bikini bottom also offers adjustable coverage, dependent on how tight they’re tied, and the side ties draw the eye to the hips to boost an hourglass figure. This striped bikini from Tommy Hilfiger, in stores soon, has ruffles to enhance the chest and draw the eye away from the stomach – I love it!

THE BLACK ONE PIECE

Just like with every other item of clothing, if all else fails then LBS – Little Black Swim! We always have a fall back plan with every night out, work day and coffee date and quite often that’s something in black. Sometimes we just can’t make a decision and throwing on the most flattering, classic colour we know can be a great way to go – even when it comes to swimwear. A stylish, black one piece should be a staple in everyone’s holiday wardrobe. It might not seem the ‘go to’ shade for a sunshine break, but if it boosts your confidence and you invest in a well fitting piece, it can last you for years. Wear an underwired style to support a larger chest, a lower cut leg to enhance an hourglass figure or a bandeau to show off your shoulders. This retro style swim from Seafolly has tank top straps to offer support but a flattering low back to show a little more skin – a definite new favourite!

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All images shot at the Soneva Jani luxury resort in the Maldives; while celebrating the launch of Benefit cosmetics new BADgal Bang mascara.

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