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Swimsuit Guide for Women Over 40

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What can you do to make swimsuit shopping less painful?

For most women, shopping for a new swimsuit ranks right up there with going to the dentist, it can be a painful experience, but there are a few things that you can do to alleviate the suffering just a little. Personally, I prefer shopping for swimsuits online and avoiding the department store mirrors and harsh lighting altogether.

What types of swimsuits should a woman over 40 or 50 avoid?

Avoid the swimsuit with a skirt attached; the extra fabric always makes you look bigger, and the additional seam is unflattering and adds bulk. Against my own better judgment, I bought and wore a version of the skirted tankini swimsuit last year, and even though it was in a fabulous, colorful, modern print, I actually ended up feeling super frumpy and older than my age.

A better option would be a swimsuit bikini bottom with higher cut legs, but full coverage, this is flattering while still offering a lot of coverage.

What swimsuits should I go for with my chunky thighs?

Go for a swimsuit with a slightly higher cut like many of the suggestions above; this will give the illusion of longer, slimmer legs.

What if I really want to cover my mid section? (which is likely if you are a woman over the age of 40 or 50)

An attractive alternative could possibly be the swimsuit dress or swimsuits with built-in controls that don’t show on the outside or styles with draping across the midriff.

The swimsuit dress is different from the swim skirt in that the bottom is a regular swimsuit bottom and the swimsuit top is one longer upper thigh length piece that flares out in a flattering A-line shape. I love the versions above from Macy's and Talbot's.

Also, be sure to find a suit with the right bust support…saggy breasts can definitely add years to your age. And definitely no bra-less suits, wear a swimsuit without proper built-in support and you will run the risk of popping out the bottom and/or the sides.

What color choice is best for a woman of a certain age?

Everyone should have a black swimming suit like a little black dress. Other good color choices are a rich jewel tone.

Avoid neon, metallic, and white...unless you are Madonna.

What if I can't face the thought of putting on a swimming suit?

Let's face it, we all have those days and that's why you should always have a beautiful coverup on hand that you can throw on and look casually chic at the pool or beach.

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