This time of year, I get tons of requests for bathing suit recommendations, so I’m updating my Swimsuit Guide with the latest trends and tons of swimsuits for women over 40!
It’s a big task because every woman’s body is different and we all have different features we want to camouflage or flaunt, but I did my best to cover all the bases.
We probably all have challenges when shopping for swimsuits. Maybe it’s a long torso, a menopausal midsection, a pear shape, a mastectomy, extra weight, or a large chest… My point is, we all have problem areas that make shopping for swimwear a bit of a challenge. Thankfully, there are swimsuits designed to target all of these issues.
I highly recommend shopping online so you can try on your swimsuits in the comfort of home. The lighting is more forgiving, and you can get the opinion of your husband or kids, which I always find helpful. When I’m in the market for a new swimsuit, I usually order a bunch and send back the ones that don’t work.
The Best Swimsuits for Women Over 40
When you get to a certain age, swimsuits become extra challenging because it’s all too easy to fall into the frump zone if we’re not careful, but it is possible to look good and feel confident in your swimsuit. It just may take some trial and error to find the right one.
As with most garments, you tend to get what you pay for with a swimsuit, and quality garments become more important as we age. A few brands that do a good job designing modern suits with the coverage and support more mature women need are Bleu by Rod Beattie, Sea Level, La Blanca, Summersalt, Birdsong, Athleta, and Miraclesuit.
When it comes to bathing suit styles, one-piece suits are definitely trending right now, and bikinis seem to always be in style. I haven’t worn a bikini top since I was 3 years old, but I think some women look fabulous and perfectly appropriate in a bikini top. It’s definitely easier to pull off if you’re smaller chested.
Amy and I rounded up a bunch of swimsuits for your consideration, and we broke them down into categories to help you with your search for the perfect suit. If you have a recommendation, feel free to let us know in the comments!
Swimsuits for a Larger Chest
photo credit: Bare Necessities (30% off!)
One of the best things to happen to swimsuits recently is bra-sized swimwear. If you have a larger chest, I highly recommend swimsuits with a built-in bra. Most stores carry them now; even Target has hopped on this train! Unfortunately. not all stores that carry bra-sized swimwear offer a wide variety of sizes.
Before my breast reduction surgery last spring, I was a 32G, and I had the best success with bra-sized swimwear in extended sizes at Bare Necessities. Everything But Water, Swimsuits For All, and Her Room have a good selection, as well.
Shop Swimsuits for a Larger Chest:
Swimsuits for a Smaller Chest
photo credit: Nordstrom
I’m no expert on this category, but I can tell you what I cannot wear and wish I could! Ruffles, padding, and push-up styles all add volume and give the illusion of a larger chest. Deep v-necks and halters also enhance smaller chests.
Shop Swimsuits for a Smaller Chest:
Swimsuits with Thigh Coverage
photo credit: Macy’s
If you like hip coverage, swim shorts and swim skirts are always an option, but they can quickly cross over into frump territory. I recommend the ones that are cut close to the body without a lot of flowy fabric.
Shop Thigh-Minimizing Swimsuits:
Swimsuits with Tummy Control
photo credit: Bare Necessities (30% off!)
If you’re self-conscious about your belly, there are a lot of great options that target this area. You can try to downplay the belly area with a blouson or swing top, but I would pair these with a bikini bottom or super close-fitting shorts. If you add a blouson or swing top to a skirt, it’s going to look frumpy.
Another great option for disguising a bit of a tummy is to wear a swimsuit with some ruching or shirring. Busy patterns also help distract the eye from any bumps or bulges we don’t want to draw attention to. Also, look for swimsuits with tummy control.
Shop Tummy-Control Swimsuits:
photo credit: Macy’s (extra 25% off with code SAVE)
If you need plus sizes, Bare Necessities and Swimsuits for All both have a nice selection, and they also have a ton of filters on the sidebar so you can drill down by the feature you’re looking for. Macy’s also has a lot of good choices.
Shop Plus-Size Swimsuits:
Got a long torso? Summersalt and Andie both have a good selection of longer length swimsuits, and Lands’ End has a bunch as well. Some are also available in long plus sizes. I also found some good ones at Boden.
Shop Long-Torso Swimsuits:
source: Neiman Marcus
Several ladies recommended Lands’ End for post-mastectomy swimwear. I also found a large selection at Amazon and Swim Outlet. If this is something you have experience with and you have another recommendation, feel free to leave it in the comments.
I hope this post is helpful as you’re swimsuit shopping this spring and summer.
And hey, when in doubt, throw on a cute coverup!
Cover-Ups for Women Over 40
Seriously, coverups are where it’s at! I practically live in mine during the summer months. Shop some of my favorites below:
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