The Hunt for the Perfect Swimsuit – A Neverending Story

It’s crazy cliche but buying a bathing suit is stressful. Okay, not really stressful. I mean, I’m not breaking out in hives or getting anxiety acne (or maybe that’s what it’s from) but buying a bathing suit is an endeavor.

I have been on a mission to find the perfect suit. Or just a suit that I like enough to feel confident rocking at the pool. To say it’s been an undertaking would be an understatement. Since I’ve purchased no less than 20 suits in the last month and decided on a few, I thought I’d share the ones I liked, the ones that fit wonky and some general sizing tips.

My goal with this is to help save you some time and the pain-in-the-ass returns process. If you end up getting any of these, I’d love to hear what you think!

J.Crew Rainbow Stripe One-PieceΒ 

In all honesty, I’ve been out on J.Crew the last few seasons and I haven’t loved a bathing suit from there in a couple years. This year, they are back. This rainbow striped, underwire suit is making my one-piece dreams come true.

Normally, the torso length on J.Crew one-pieces is an issue for me. Not with this one. It could stand to be cut a little higher in the leg but it’s high enough to not give you that dumpy boy short look on the legs. It also sucks you in really well. It makes it a little harder to put on but once it’s on, you feel like you’ve got bathing suit spanx on – in a good way, not in a ‘I can’t breathe’ kind of way. It also doesn’t get saggy in the water like so many seersucker suits can do. It runs pretty true to size – I ordered a 6 and it fit really well. But if you’re in between, I’d say size down.

I wore this one on Saturday and Sunday over the weekend and got so many compliments. It’s a winner and I love it so much that I’m considering getting it in the pink or blue version too.

Verdict: WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!

I love Athleta but had never tried their bathing suits until this week. More than a few friends have raved to me about them, especially because of the sizing for girls with bigger chests, but I’d held off because I hadn’t really loved any of the styles.

Last week they had a 20% off sale so I took the plunge and ordered a couple. I did love that you could mix and match so much with the tops and bottoms which all come in a ton of colors, so I will definitely be back.Β  Here’s the verdict on the two I tried.

Cloudbreak Ribbed Bikini: I bought this one in pink and it was love at first site. The color is so good so I was inclined to love it from the start but the fit was on point. A lot of scoop neck tops are unsupportive but this one lifted the girls up and held them in place. I actually loved the bottoms on the other suit I ordered more but these ones get a solid B+ from me. A little more cheeky than I’d like but they have a good amount of coverage and don’t squeeze at your hips – saving from that muffin top bulge.

This ribbed one comes in black too if you don’t want something so bright. It runs pretty true to size but you might want to size up in the top if you’re in between sizes. The only thing I don’t love is the cup inserts which are a little bulky. I’m thinking I might swap them out for ones from another suit that are a little thinner.

South Swell Bikini Top + Twist Bottom: So I really loved this suit but I ordered it in the violet and it ended up looking more like a bra and panty than a bathing suit. Not really the look I’m going for at the pool. I think this one in black or the bright blue would be really cute.

The bottoms are perfect. The right amount of coverage without looking granny and the twist in the front is a nice detail. I didn’t love the top. It looked more like a sports bra on me than a regular top. That being said, I think that’s because I have super broad shoulders so the straps didn’t hit right. For someone more narrow, this would be a cute style, especially since the detailing in the back is different.

If you’ve got broad shoulders like me, you may want to try this style. It comes in bra sizes which is really nice so you know you’re getting the right fit.

These suits are both great options if you have to chase kids around at the pool or if you’re going to be tubing or skiing at the lake/beach.

VERDICT: GOOD STUFF. Highly recommend.

More Athleta Swim

Amazon is the new Mecca of swimsuit shopping.

I’ve thrown so many in my cart when buying boring stuff like packing tape and laundry detergent. These are three I’ve bought and tried. I’ve bought about three or four others and returned them because I ordered the wrong size. I’ve actually loved almost everyone I’ve ordered, it’s just that sizing is tough.

If I have one tip with Amazon suits, it’s order a couple sizes. That way you don’t have to do a lot of back and forth.

Two-Piece Pom Pom Bikini: The pros on this one is that it comes in a TON of colors. I’ve actually ordered it in black as well as this paisley print. My biggest tip on this one is size up. My second biggest tip is order one where you can’t see your belly button through the mesh.

This print one was PERFECT in the bottoms but the top just didn’t work for me. I wanted to love it so much because the bottoms fit AMAZING. Sometimes high waisted bottoms look like a diaper on me and these hit in all the right places. Seriously, the quality and fit for a $19.99 suit was awesome. I just wish there were some other options on the top because it wasn’t a great fit for me. I need a little more support. That being said, if you love a triangle top or are smaller chested – this suit is GOLD.

My friend Courtney has it in red and it is the perfect holiday weekend suit. It comes in a TON of colors so I definitely recommend checking it out.

Stripe Ruffle One-Piece: Guys, this is the magic suit. I have it blue stripe and am obsessed. The quality is on par with much more expensive brands and the fit is spot on. I’ve recommended this suit to tons of people and everyone has loved it. It’s like the Sisterhood of the Traveling Stripe Suit.

Now it comes in a few other colors. My friend has the red/blue stripe one and it is so darling on her. This is the $20 suit we all need. I would say to size up if you’re in between sizes. I have it in a large and it fits great.

Color Block One-Piece: I saw this one when hunting for a different Amazon suit but loved the simplicity on this one. When it came, I loved it. The quality is great and the fit was awesome. I ended up returning it though because it fit a little weird in the boobs. The padding made it jut out a little. If you’re small chested, you could easily just remove it and be good to go. But if you’re in need of the padding, this one probably isn’t for you.

Here’s some others I’ve tried as well as some my friends have recommended to me. All of these are winners, just size up.

Here’s another J.Crew option that I bought fully expecting to return but instead, fell in love with.

A lot of seersucker tops either tie in the back or are pull-over styles. This one has a clasp in the back, automatically giving it a leg up in my book. It also has adjustable straps, another key feature. Add in the adorable pom trim and you’ve got a winning top. I got a medium and am happy with it. It’s definitely the most true-to-size of the bunch.

Just like the other seersucker suit, this one doesn’t get saggy in the water. The bottoms are pretty standard – fit well and run true to size. This one is selling out pretty quickly, so if it catches your eye, go ahead and order it.

 

Aerie Swim

This one is going to be pretty vague since most of the suits I ordered specifically are sold out but the general styles are still the same. But overall, I have LOVED every aerie suit I have ordered. I have made some sizing errors (thinking I could squeeze into a small was my mistake, firmly in the medium/large camp) but the quality is on point and it’s no lie that these suits flatter every body type.Β 

I’m 100% convinced that their high-waisted bottoms are the best around. The leg is cut high enough to flatter every shape but not SO high that you’re worried about giving a peep show. I bought them in black and the bright red/orange color and have already mixed and matched them with other tops.

Their one pieces are equally great. Basically, it’s a good product at a good price point in a TON of styles. There’s no way you can’t find a suit that flatters your figure for under $75 (probably less). I tried to order the one above but it was sold out in my size before I could grab the top.

Definitely order your true size. These ones are pretty spot on.

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