The idea of having a perfect, slender body that is ‘bikini-ready’ has thankfully been largely dismissed (got a body? You're ready), but that’s not to say that finding flattering swimwear is any less of a yearly mission - we can happily accept our lumps, bumps and curves as part of our natural beauty and still want to look good as we head to the pool.
But whether it’s a bikini for your summer break or a stylish one-piece that you’re after, there’s one part of the swimsuit shopping task that’s hard to nail: the tummy. Some one-pieces stretch over bigger bellies only to make them appear worse (especially if you suffer with bloating ) and an ill-fitting high-waisted bikini bottom can draw more attraction to wobbly bits, not less; but find the right cut with built-in, flattering fabrics and shaping and you’ll feel more confident than ever. Dive in to our edit of the best tummy-taming swimwear below…
M&S Secret Slimming TM Monochrome Print Plunge Swimsuit, £29.50
M&S has, in my opinion, one of the best ranges for women who want to hide and support any wobbly bits, with a great size range and at decent prices too. I wear their tankinis regularly for swimming at my local pool and the ruched fabric makes you look and feel taut and toned - it’s their ‘Secret Slimming’ technology, and the non-wired padded cups help to enhance your figure too. With animal print everywhere this year, this monochrome colour is ideal for the beach and the size of the print has a slimming effect in itself, but do check out the rest of the range too for bright stripes or bold colours if you’re up for something a little louder.
Next Shape Enhancing Swimsuit, £25
This Next one-piece is available in plenty of colours but we love this bold red - it’s easy to be tempted to stick to dark colours if you’re wary of your tummy but it’s all about the cut, so plenty of fun can still be had. The wrap design is perfect for curvier shapes with firm support for your tum and soft and adjustable spaghetti straps; two shades are available in their petite range too.
H&M Shaping Swimsuit, £24.99
With a simple wrapover design for the top that’s lightly padded as well as adjustable straps and ruched gathering at the sides, this chic swimming costume suits all and again is available in multiple colours and prints - we love the khaki for a flattering, tan-enhancing shade. Fully lined, it’s designed to sculpt your tummy, back and bum - and with an impressive size range too.
Boux Avenue St Lucia Floral High Waisted Bikini Briefs (£20) and Top (£32)
Sizes: Briefs 6-18, top 30-38 B-G cup
While this option doesn’t have tummy-shaping technology as such, if you are looking for a flattering bikini for a rounder tummy then your best bet is to head to a brand such as Boux Avenue who know their lingerie - and therefore know exactly how to find you the right fit. As with the rest of the range, this pretty floral high-waisted number with an underwired balcony style top is sold as separates so you can buy the bikini top in your bra size and then match with your choice of bottoms, because women’s bodies do not just come in small, medium and large. The top can be worn strapless or as a halter neck too.
Figleaves Icon Spot Mesh Underwired Shaping Halter Black Swimsuit, £60
Sizes: 30-38, D-G cup
One of the brand’s bestsellers, this beautifully flattering black swimming costume has a spot mesh halter design to give it an added ‘something’, while the sculpting material, sweetheart neckline and underwiring creates a super smooth silhouette while giving you support. Plus, at the time of writing, it's in the sale - go go go!
What are your favourite brands for flattering swimwear? Let us know in the comments!