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On Covering Up – Bikinis vs. One-Pieces

Recently, I spent glorious, relaxing hours lounging in a “Serenity Pool” at the Omni Amelia Island Resort. I was there with my husband, who was attending a conference at the hotel and we planned to spend our first weekend away from Sterling having as much fun as possible.

Having gained and lost 40 pounds from my pregnancy, displaying my post preggers body was a daunting task. Leading up to the trip, I spent weeks exercising, monitoring my caloric intake and fretting over bathing suit options. I was close to bikini-ready, but not quite there. My search for the perfect bikini bottom proved fruitless (that and I am far too cheap to spend big money on a temporary fix).

Suddenly, the day before I departed, I was left with 2 choices. Wear my one-piece from 5+ years ago (my go-to in insecure times) or attempt to pull off a bikini from last summer. I left the choice up to Lon. With a sweet compliment on how nice I looked, we both decided the one-piece was just better looking.

Here’s where the experience got interesting. Almost immediately after entering the pool area, I discovered that I felt more confident and happy covered up. I no longer worried about unflattering angles or rolls caused by sitting up. I was free to completely relax and I did. There was also something exciting about leaving much to the imagination. After years of short-shorts and baring it all, it felt refreshing to cover up.

For the rest of the weekend, I observed other hotel patrons in their swimwear of choice. In a resort full of women, only a couple were wearing a one-pieces. There was a smattering of women who rocked the suit, but also several in bikinis who seemed insecure and uneasy. I asked myself, “why had they chosen to bare it all and suffer?”

A blog post by Samantha Matt, “10 Struggles of Not Being Fat, But Not Being Skinny Either” shed some light. The one-piece has become synonymous with being “fat”. She illustrates this in point 6:

“6. Taking your cover up off at the beach.

This is, legit, the worst thing ever. You don’t want to bend over in a bikini (someone could see your roll!), so you’ve mastered the take-off-the-dress-while-already-lying-down act. Sure you could just wear a one piece to avoid this problem, but you’re not going to wear a fucking one piece – YOU’RE NOT FAT. The struggle continues through your entire beach trip. When coming back to your towel after going in the ocean, you are faced with a big dilemma. You don’t have your cover up on, so you have to lie down quickly before people see your fat shake around too much. But your towel is covered in sand and you don’t want to lie down in sand while wet. However, your alternative is bending down to shake the towel off. I’d rather be a sand monster than bend down in a bikini… thanks.”

This t has got to go.

After spending much of my adult life agreeing with Samantha, I’m compelled to fight this mentality. Why spend a beautiful vacation worrying about your mid-section, when you can relax and enjoy yourself? Let’s help ourselves here and cut this self-harm.

Yes, bikinis are fun and can be very rewarding. But if those feelings aren’t present, why torture yourself? Especially when designers offer one-piece options designed to camouflage or enhance any area.

So what will you wear this summer? Will you rock a bikini and feel proud and secure? Will you try out my one-piece theory for yourself?

The choice is yours, just opt for self-love and acceptance. It’s the most attractive trait either way.

Here are some chic one-pieces from Old Navy and Nordstrom that are awesome alternatives to those eenie-meenie bikinis (Don’t forget to take a friend {like me!} with for a confidence boosting back-up):

The ruching on this suit cinches in a waist, while the V-neck top will support a larger chest. An overall gorgeous look.

For those craving some fashion and function, this suit is your match. The black bands and belt will provide an hourglass appearance.

The fun print on this suit is perfect for camouflaging any waistline worries.

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