Summer Swimwear - Health & Beauty

Finding the perfect swimsuit can be a challenge and sometimes on a par with finding the perfect hairdresser. The actress, Helen Mirren was photographed by a paparazzo in 2008 whilst holidaying in Italy with her husband, Taylor Hackford. She turned 63 that year and wore a red bikini; although Mirren has since said that she was unhappy being photographed, the image went viral. The empowering message received by many was that women can wear any swimsuit they want to at any age. 

When buying a new swimsuit, consider whether you prefer classic and timeless, such as a black one-piece, or a graphic print. Dark colours can be the most slimming visually. Finding the right fit is important, so always try on new swimwear before buying. Take your size to the fitting room, but also one size larger. The fabric of some swimsuits expands after getting wet and a thin fabric may become translucent! Better quality fabrics will cope with chlorine, salty sea, the sun, and grainy sand. Try gently stretching the fabric to see if it recovers well. 

For those who like (safely) tanning by lying on a beach or poolside a bikini does, of course, allow for the most sun exposure. For UV sun protection or surfing, a long-sleeved, full-piece suit with thick straps is more suitable. 

Cheaper swimsuits may not be lined and, if you are a daily or weekly swimmer, try to have two suits that can be rotated. Wearing the same swimming costume regularly can weaken the fabric and the elastic. If you have a swimsuit with a gorgeous, brightly-coloured print, leaving it out in the sun to dry can cause the colours to fade over time. After a swim, when the swimsuit has been rinsed out, it’s advisable not to wring it out as this can cause stretching. Instead, roll it up in a towel so that excess moisture is extracted; it can be washed on a cold wash with a mild laundry detergent. 

2024 will see more eco-friendly swimwear, made from recycled materials, and bamboo has begun to emerge as a natural alternative to polyester and nylon. Look for brands that use 100% compostable packaging when shipping. It’s possible to be eco-conscious for a sustainable swim. It’s also worth putting effort into finding the right swimwear for you and either happily wearing a swimdress to conceal your curves or celebrating them this summer.   -Gill Towle