A frequent request asks for suggestions for swimwear styles that are flattering yet functional. Keep reading for suggestions for swimwear to flatter different body shapes. I will also share a few ideas for coverups.
Those of us with an inverted triangle shape or an hourglass shape will look great in the suit above. (Found here) It has a deep V neckline, sturdy shoulder straps, and a crossover detail at the bust, which is very flattering. Ruching at the waistline is a feminine detail that many of us appreciate. One option for a beach cover shirt is shown below (found here).
The pants below (found here) are another option for coverage when you leave the beach or pool.
If your top half and bottom half are not the same sizes, you already know the struggle to find a suit that fits properly. I’ve found the solution is a two-piece suit. The tankini top shown below is perfect for the lady with a pear or apple shape. It draws attention away from the tummy, and you can opt for the swim briefs that flatter your shape and actually fit your body. I found the top here, and options for bottoms are also on the site.
If your shape is lean with a small bust, the suit option below will flatter you. The suit is here.
The pear-shaped lady will enjoy wearing the swim dress below. It flatters the waist and upper body while skimming gracefully over the hip area. I found the beautiful suit here.
A coverup that buttons down the front is a proven favorite for convenience and versatility. I found the shirt below here and the one shown above here.
The photo in the newsletter shows a dress from a few years ago. I have very few photos of me by a pool or the beach, so that one is recycled. Shopping links on my site may allow me to earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.
Thank you Susan! You’ve found some nice style options for all different shapes of women. We are so fortunate! I see more options now than ever. The cover ups are cute too. I even noticed petite size suits at Lands End. Have a great week!
Thank you, Lynne. I noticed that Land’s End also has some suits by cup size. LL. Bean also has some great options.
Where is the long dress from in the very first picture? It is very flattering on you.
That is a picture from a previous summer. The dress was from Dillard’s about three years ago.
Thanks for the tips, Susan! I hate swimsuit shopping. I have a pear shape body, so I always must go for a swim dress. I also have VERY fair skin, and unruly curly reddish hair (mom was 100% Irish with fair skin and fiery red curly hair). It’s safe to say the phrase ‘fairest of them all’ accurately describes my skin tone. I feel completely out of place in a swimsuit due to my very pale skin, really summer clothes in general because most pastels wash me out. Charleston a subtropical paradise and hide from the sun under straw hats and 50 spf-lol. I feel like my shape and skin tone would have been better suited here in the 1850’s hidden under hoop skirts and parasols. We spend as much time as we can at our Gatlinburg home during summers. Reading a book with my toes in clear cold mountain river on a hot July day is my cup of tea.
I’m of Irish-Scottish descent and I know exactly what you mean. I’ve really appreciated the swim tees from Lands’ End – I wear them all the time when I’m in the sun or the water, and I just need sunscreen for my face and hands instead of all of me. They dry quickly and are surprisingly cool to wear, even when it’s humid. Tankini top, swim tee and swim shorts is my usual swim uniform, and I put on my coverup skirt or pants (usually a light-colored linen or rayon) as soon as I’m out of the water. I live in Australia right now and have also found great options at the Cancer Council store: cancercouncilshop.org.au. Have fun and stay sun-safe!
Thanks, SUSAN, I struggle because I have a pear shape and this was helpful. It doesn’t matter if I weigh 100 pounds or 130, which I used to be, I still have a little tummy and small breasts. I was so upset at a birthday party when I was 13 and went to the bathroom with a friend who had very nice ones at that age. I told my mother and she said don’t worry you’ll get them soon. Boy, did she tell me a big one to placate me! It’s a memory I’ll never forget. Have a good day.
Thank you for the nice article and doing the research!
I just bought 2 button up shirts at Goodwill for a painting project…either or both could be used for coverups. So cute!!! I bought mens’ shirts because I wanted the fullness and length. $4.99….can’t beat Goodwill.
Love these selections and already have a few of them in my cart! Thanks so much!
I just had to remark about your picture, Susan! You look like a stunning southern bell! Just gorgeous!
Thanks so very much for all the information and ideas, you make shopping so much easier! Also, saving me from making so many mistakes in buying by explaining what our shapes need to wear.
On another subject, I keep trying to order the cream natural color/low cut Sheec footie, my first order last year through your site (to get your generous discount code) went smoothly and I won’t buy any other type footie now, however I have been trying for several months to order more and they are continuously out of stock. I wonder if I do something wrong? Do you ever have this problem ? I tried when you posted last week again. They have other style but not the ones I love, I guess they are most popular but has been months.
The athletic no-socks are made in India, so there will be delays before getting them again. I am also waiting for them.
Thank you, Susan, for these lovely examples of swimwear. I have very fair skin & burn easily. During our first extended stay in Florida 5 years ago, I came across the Cabana line you show above. I have that exact cover-up and several more because of the superb sun protection in these products. They are pricey, but stand up well to sand, sweat and sunscreen. Cabana cover-ups are very flattering & can also be worn as a casual sundress when running errands, or dressed up a bit with white leggings/capris and pretty sandals.
An advantage to tankini bathing suits is the ease with which you can change into dry bottoms instead of sitting on the beach in damp bottoms between swims. For a day at a Gulf Coast beach, I usually pack 3 bottoms to one tankini top. Makes washroom visits easy, too.
A bit pointless showing beach wear for over sixties on slim young models. How about real women of various shapes, and height.
The models are irrelevant to me. I look for the clothing shapes and fabrics that suit my needs.
Thanks for the info. Answers a lot of my questions. Also I loved that sundress you were wearing. Will look for similar style since it was a few years old. Blessings, Diane Stunden
Great suggestions! Thank you.
Lovely suits that are just right for our age, not too revealing. You mentioned a newsletter—is it possible to sign up and receive a notification when you publish a new post? Thanks!
If you are on your desktop, there is a sign-up link to the right of your screen. There are also signup links on the mobile version. Touch the three horizontal lines on the upper left corner of your screen and scroll to the bottom for the Newsletter link.
Thank you, Susan! I’m in!
Thanks so much for the tips!
Have you, or anyone else, seen romper style swimsuits with wide (full) legs anywhere online?
My 86yo Mom wants a new swimsuit … and so do I!
We used to have several in that style, which are getting pretty shabby!!! The suits are one piece with a full “panty” lining – very modest.
Thanks for your posts!
Always entertaining and enlightening.
Take a look at Land’s End here. I found a suit there last year and I’m very happy with the fit. They have a good selection.
Thank you for all of your extensive research into swimwear. I see many options to make me more comfortable around the beach and pool.
Good Morning. I so enjoy all of your posts. And I really enjoy the fashion tips and just checking out what you have put together to wear. I am trying to get your newsletter. But I am having difficulty figuring out how to do that. Thanks
If you are on your desktop, there is a sign-up link to the right on your screen. There are also signup links on the mobile version. Touch the three horizontal lines on the upper left corner of your screen and scroll to the bottom for the Newsletter link.
Hi lovely and stylish lady! I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts on how to wear a kimono, or do you avoid them altogether? “Maude” could pull off the look…
I don’t have a kimono anymore, but I enjoy wearing ruanas that are similar but without sleeves.