It’s safe to say that summer is approached with a mixture of joy (warm weather!) and dread as you contemplate the woes of swimsuit shopping. Every woman — no matter her figure, proportions or size — understands just how frustrating it can be to find a stylish suit that actually fits and flatters. But women with large chests know this frustration perhaps more than anyone.
Swimsuits for big busts require a very specific set of design details that must be checked off, lest we make ourselves prime targets for wardrobe malfunctions or a day full of constant readjustments and covert boob stuffing. Unfortunately, it seems as though mainstream swimwear retailers carry only two types of swimsuits: the barely-covers-your-bits suits or the kind designed with grandmothers in mind.
But fret not! Though it may feel like they are few and far between, stylish swimsuits that support large chests do exist. Here’s what to look for, plus eight new styles that were designed with big boobs in mind.
What to look for in a swimsuit:
When buying a bikini, opt for swimwear that’s sold as bra-sized separates and choose the same size that you buy for your regular lingerie. “This will ensure a perfect fit, plus it will provide the proper lift and support for a larger bust,” explains Victoria Shelton, a garment technologist at Figleaves.com. “Our body is more than just a small, medium or large. Shopping swimwear with bra sizes can be life-changing, as a perfectly fitting swimsuit gives you confidence at the beach or pool.” Bonus when buying separates: You can get your bottoms in the correct size as well.
When in doubt, look for a swimsuit with underwire, which provides you with extra support. That said, Shelton notes that more designers are coming up with amazing, non-wired styles that also work for larger busts – think contoured and molded cups. “The real trick is to make sure you’re looking for a brand that is specifically designing for larger cup sizes,” she says.
Avoid thin, loose straps or strapless silhouettes. A suit with thick straps will give you extra lift up top. Also key: Look for one with adjustable straps so you have more flexibility. (These can be straps that you can criss-cross in different ways, or with metal adjusters similar to those you find on a bra.) Halter tie necks are a good option, too, since you can adjust to your level of comfort.
High necklines and/or backs
If you’re looking for more coverage and extra support, high-necks are a great option. You can even find sexier styles with mesh. Additionally, if a suit has a high back then it will provide you with more side-boob coverage and more support in general.
Swimsuits that check all the boxes:
If you’re searching for a swimsuit that caters to large busts, the options below are a great place to start. Trust me, I’ve tried on countless options to find the ones that check all the boxes above, and these are the swimsuits that passed the big boob test.