Find the right swimsuit to flatter your body shape
Strappy top or halterneck style? Plain or patterned? Don’t go swimwear shopping until you’ve read our guide!
Whether you’re top heavy or have an athletic build, we’ve got a swimsuit option for you. Simply choose the body shape that closely resembles yours from the four basic body types below – Hourglass, Pear-Shaped, Inverted Triangle and Athletic – and read our recommendations to learn which will suit you best.
From pear to hourglass, find the perfect swimsuit for your shape with our expert guide
Hourglass Feminine and curvy, hourglass figures are characterised by having a bust equal (or very close) in measurement to the hips, often with a small, defined waist. This shape is seemingly the perfect body shape, so you can get away with most swimwear styles.
If you’re top heavy, go for a halter style neckline or underwired bust for extra support. Don’t be afraid of bold colours to show off your balanced curves.
Celebrities with an hourglass body shape include Scarlett Johansson, Salma Hayek, Jessica Alba and Kate Winslet.
If you’re Hourglass try the Speedo PristineShine or Aqua Delux swimsuits.
Pear Shaped On a pear-shaped body, weight tends to be carried on the lower half, normally around the hips and thighs. To balance this, bring focus to the upper half of your body with fun and pretty detailing, keeping your bottom half darker and higher cut to give the illusion of a longer, leaner leg. Use colour and pattern to balance your body visually – busy patterns draw attention to your top, while dark, solid colours on the bottom minimise attention. Try something with a plunging neckline or extra pattern on the top half. Slimming side-panelling detail will also help to narrow your silhouette.
Celebrities with this body shape include Kim Kardashian, Shakira, Rihanna and Eva Mendes. If you’re Pear Shaped, try the Speedo Premier Flowactive Swimsuit.
Inverted Triangle Inverted triangles are broader on their top halves, and may have larger chests that require extra support. Halter-style tops can be a good choice, offering support while providing a great cleavage too. Look for styles that are banded around the midriff and can be tied in the back and around the neck, allowing for adjustments for a personal fit. Some structure in the bust, such as soft foam cups, or at least a shelf bra, will help. Straight cut bust styles, such as a classic tank, can look clean and sporty, while wide shoulder straps offer more comfort than thin, spaghetti straps. Avoid high necklines and bandeau shapes which will create a uniboob! Being top heavy you may also have wide shoulders and slim hips, so balance is still the key word here: you’ll want to play up the bottom of your torso and minimise the top. Sporty accents at the hips such as ties, belts and added detailing, will balance your silhouette. Avoid plunging V-necklines and halternecks, which will only make you seem broader.
Celebrities with this body shape include Victoria Beckham, Angelina Jolie and Kelly Brooke.
If you’re an Inverted Triangle shape, try the Speedo Aquagrace one-piece and if you’re bigger on top, the Speedo Aqua Deluxe Seaspirit / Totem Swimsuit.
Athletic / Boyish Athletic or boyish, you may have no waist and/or slim hips and strong, broad shoulders. Your body shape lacks the curves of a defined waist, so create some by wearing a one-piece suit with a high-on-the-thigh cut. A belted waistline swimsuit will give you the appearance of a nipped in waist, while a curvy seam each side of the body will also help add balance. Pretty patterns and detailing will help to add a more feminine touch while balancing out a more athletic frame.
Celebrities with this body shape include Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson and Kate Middleton.
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