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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Suit up: a girl's guide to swimwear

Winter has kicked my ass this year.  Waking up to 18 degree weather is getting old.  I need sun.  I want to feel warmth!  This being said, I am very much looking forward to a trip to Florida to visit the parents.  My boys are very excited, as is my husband, because he opted OUT of this trip.  So I am going solo with the boys. Now this also means that I will need to squeeze my body into a bathing suit in less than 14 days.  Oh, the horror!

Bathing suit shopping is probably the most demeaning thing a woman can do. (with jean's shopping coming in at a close 2nd) The suit selection, the fluorescent lights, the white, pasty skin....Ugh!  Someone will be in tears by the end of this.  Again, I am not skinny.  Bathing suits are available in all shapes & sizes..just not mine.  Now, there is no shortage of suits out there.  I recently went shopping for a sled in January after the last snowstorm & found that at Target, it was already summertime. Bathing suits, inflatable pools, flip flops?  WTF?  

I digress.  Let's take a look at the suits that we, as women, are supposed to stuff our ladies parts into.

Exhibit A:  The BIKINI

All bikinis look good an a hanger or a size 0 plastic dummy.   Finding one that fits "just right" is pretty much an exercise in futility.  Do you see the top?  These little triangles are supposed to cover & support?  To be honest,  I do not think they could even cover my nipples.  Those strings would be pushed to the limit to support me.  So unless I go on a full body cleanse for about 2 months, (and invest is some serious lipo) this is not an option for me. 

Exhibit B: The TANKINI

Clever name for the 1/2 tank top & 1/2 bikini.  The tankini was once reserved for the pregnant woman.  I believe this is really for those women who are clinging to their youth & not ready to commit to the one piece. The waist is covered with material that is not connected to the bottom.  I don't know about you, but I think everyone looks like they are expecting in one of these.  The Urban Dictionary defines it as "A bikini for fat birds with beer bellies or similar wobbly guts"  I might have to agree with that one.

Exhibit C:  The ONE PIECE

I think all women are a bit sad when this is the option that they have to go with.  The cuts range from full coverage to high-cut & skimpy.  There does come a point when more coverage is better.  One of the more popular models is the "Miracle Suit."  As in, it will take a miracle to make your body look good enough to not scare other patrons & small children on the beach.  It claims to make you look10 lbs. lighter just by putting it on.  You just cannot breathe, sit down or operate heavy machinery.

There are also other "creative" options such as the "swim skirt"  & "board shorts."  In other words, just wear clothes you big fatty!  All in all...swimsuits = hell!

After years of sobbing alone in the dressing room, I have found MY miracle.  It is a company called Pango-Pango Swimwear.  This website has FOREVER changed my tainted views of summertime attire.  On this site, you can choose tops & bottoms separately that actually fit YOU.  Many companies like Victoria's Secret, Lands End & Newport News offer the same service.  But I have found that what these companies consider a D cup is more like a Dixie cup.

The selection at Pango-Pango is amazing.  Tops from the tiniest triangles to, my favorite "most supportive under-wire," really fit.  You order by cup size & back measurement.  This is key.  I have a large cup size but my back is small.  They understand that big-busted women do not have a size 45 back. The straps are sturdy & you don't bounce, around worried that you will spring free & injure other bathers while swimming.

The bottoms have the same flexibility.  Lined & double-stitched in anything form a g-string to a full-coverage brief.  One option I tried & I love is the custom made one-piece.  They literally make the suit to your measurements.  This includes the torso length so it does not ride up.  They will also take it back (with tags on) if it doesn't fit.  They also offer suits in every color, solid or print, under the sun.. Just AWESOME!!!

I'm telling you girls.  If you suffer from swimwear anxiety like I do, you have to purchase a suit from Pango Pango. Good luck & happy shopping!

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