High-Waisted Bottoms — It’s hard not to crush on this retro-inspired cut. With the added help of holding in the sometimes tricky-to-tone lower-ab area, this pin-up inspired two piece will flatter a range of sizes.
String Bikinis — While it’s one of the most classic swimwear shapes, it’s also one of the skimpiest. If you’ve got the right attitude to wear a string bikini, totally go for it — but just be sure to double knot.
Calypso St. Barth Rever String Bikini, $295, available at Calypso St. Barth; 3.1 Phillip Lim Ribbon Toe Bikini Set, $250, available at La Garconne; Old Navy Women’s Mix & Match String Bikini Tops, $14.94, available at Old Navy; String Bikini Bottoms, $14.94 available at Old Navy.
Cut-Out One Pieces — Sure, it’s a one piece, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less daring than those options on the last slide. We love to get a little creative in our choice of cutouts that wrap and hug our bods in interesting ways. Just don’t forget the sunscreen — these suits can leave you with equally daring tanlines.
Underwire — An underwire bathing-suit top can be helpful for those ladies who are either busty or in need of a little boost. The underwire not only helps provide support, but with the proper push up, can also create lift for those of us who are looking to enhance our cleavage.
Topshop Frill Underwire Bikini, $56, available at Topshop; J.Crew Deck Stripe Underwire Top, $58, and Stripe Deck Bikini, $56, available at J.Crew; One by Kore Swim Maverick Bikini Set, $206, available at Shopbop.
Maillots — No matter what your frame or size, some ladies prefer a swimsuit that offers more full coverage, especially around the derriere. Go for a sweet maillot shape that keeps everything in place and avoids any, erm, cheeky moments.
Seafolly Black and White Sorrento Boyleg Maillot Swimsuit, $119.63, available at My Wardrobe; Anthropologie Natalie One-Piece, $148, available at Anthropologie; Modcloth Beach Blanket Bingo One Piece, $89.99, available at Modcloth.
Wide-Banded Tops — If underwires make you cringe and strings are just not cutting it for you, the wide-banded top is the perfect solution, offering you the best of both worlds. Also, with ties around the neck and/or back, these options provide a snug fit that’s pretty easily customized to your size and shape.
Victoria’s Secret The Liya Push Up Halter Top, $18; Matching Bottoms, $18, available at Victoria’s Secret; Pret A Surf Printed halterneck bikini, $295, available at Net-a-Porter; Lucky Brand Love Child Tie Dye Halter, $68; Love Child Tie Dye Bottom, $58, available at Bloomingdale’s.
Athletic — Because sometimes we actually need a swimsuit to swim, or surf, or play. It’s a crazy concept, we know, but these styles add some support and coverage for sexy swimwear that’s anything but wimpy.
Free People Cropped Sport Brassiere, $88 and Sport Derriere, $88, available at Free People; Lisa Marie Fernandez Daphne Colorblock Zip-Up One-Piece Swimsuit, $495, available at Bergdorf Goodman; Lisa Marie For Peter PilottoJasmine Bikini, $472, available at Matches.
Wrapped Waist — Think of it as your go-to wrap dress’ beachy counterpoint. The wrapped-waist swimsuit has all the instant-hourglass power of your fave weekday frock.
Bandeau — You want as few tan lines as possible, but because we don’t suggest going full monty— unless it’s just that kind of beach — try something sans straps.
Ella Moss Native Bandeau Bikini Top, $65; Native Bikini Brief, $53, available at Swim Spot; Topshop Brown Tiger Bandeau Bikini, $64, available at Topshop; Island Soul Mila Bandeau Bikini Top, $27.99, available at Tilly’s; Rollwaist Bikini Bottoms, 27.99, available at Tilly’s.
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