Thursday, 29 June 2017

Amazing Swimwear Finds at Asda

A short rant about swimwear manufacturers incoming: why do bikinis for women with breasts have to be so bloody awful? Each year, ahead of my summer holiday, I embark on my least favourite shopping activity of the year - finding swimwear. It's always a horrible business. It doesn't matter when I choose to undertake this soul destroying but necessary task - the day I go bikini shopping will be the day I look my most hairy, most PMT-ish and most pasty. And I always seem to be wearing clothes that prove the most fiddly to get on and off which will only add to my general feeling of irritation. 

But the the thing that really annoys me? The fact that in 2017 it appears to remain an impossible task to buy a supportive, stylish, well made two-piece for under £100. Go into most high street stores and you'll be confronted with racks and racks of gaudy, poorly made items that will do absolutely nothing to boost your body confidence. It makes my heart sink. 

Despite that fact that, generally speaking, the modern world is more accepting of different body shapes than it used to be, a silly myth appears to persist amongst the people who make swimwear: that women are one size all over. So, if you're a size 12 in your clothes, a size 12 bikini will be adequate for your needs. This is, of course, madness. I don't know many people who have size 12 hips, boobs and bums. It's so completely illogical when it comes to breast size, as you can be the size of twiglet and still have big boobs, so a one-size-fits-all-body-parts just doesn't make sense. 

Then there are the shops that refuse to acknowledge a cup size over a C - &OtherStories, I'm looking at you (you may be under the impression that everyone who shops in your stores is a boyishly figured Scandinavian model, but that's simply not the case. I'm a 40-something lady who loves your aesthetic but your bikinis don't go anywhere near the average sized 40-something lady.) 

At the other end of the scale are the brands who actively target the more generously endowed....and they, to be honest, are equally as bad. Who said that women with a larger cup size want to be trussed up in some fussy, frilly get-up that recalls a scene from Butlins circa 1956? It seems there's an idea amongst swimwear designers that girls with boobs are a bit 'cheeky' and a bit wacky, so the swimwear that targets these customers is all loud prints on push-up tops and big pants. 

Why does no one cater to women who want a discreet alternative, in a simple style and classic colour? And the padding!!! What's with the bloody padding? I hate anything that's padded or push-up but swimwear designers seem to have decided that it's a must for the modern woman. Ugh. 

Having tried on bikinis from a range of manufacturers, and at all price points, it also baffles me that the fit can be so wrong on so many of them. Tops described as "supportive" are often unflattering and constrictive. They can often draw attention to the area of your body you least want attention drawing too. Even expensive swimwear can be made from horrible, saggy material that thins at the sight of chlorine and loses its shape with even the teeniest bit of wringing out.  

Then there are the bikinis that actually break on holiday - I spent a memorable holiday in Greece with a safety pin attachment on my back thanks to a clasp that melted in the sun. I mean, it's a bit of a no-brainer - you kind of need a bikini to withstand hot weather conditions, no?

But there's no way I'm spending £100 on something I'm going to wear approximately 6 times in a year. Trust me, I've spent a few quid on swimwear in the past, and they all go the same way - you just need something to last you for your couple of weeks in the sun, something you'll enjoy wearing and which will - if you're like me - offer at least some support for messing about the swimming pool with your kids. In my case, I don't want a loud print or cheap feeling material - I want the three Ss: Simple, Stylish, Supportive. 

So imagine my surprise when on a random trip to Asda I came across not one but TWO pretty brilliant options? I honestly can vouch for the quality and fit of these two bikinis. You can buy the tops and bottoms separately, and while the tops are sized rather than cup sized (eg 10, 12, 14 etc) they are both supportive and flattering - I sized up to a 12 and found the coverage perfect for my needs. 

Of course, the proof will kind of be in the pudding - it's hard to judge swimwear on functionality from the confines of a changing room, but I was really, really surprised how good these two options felt on. I think the price points speak for themselves too...

The zip and mesh detail give this one a sportswear vibe which I like. A really good fit on me and I love black. Available with matching bottoms. All in, £12. Buy here. 

Ignore the moaners on the reviews going on about sizing issues - just go and try this on. I found it a perfect fit and it offers the coverage I want without making me feel matronly. This top comes in at just £4. Yep, you read that right. Buy here.


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