Home Life Style Throw Your Bikini In The Trash: This Is The Summer Cozzie Got Chic

Throw Your Bikini In The Trash: This Is The Summer Cozzie Got Chic

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It's a gem: Diamond Wave Capri, £80, boden.co.uk

The big bikini versus swimsuit debate always comes up now, so I’ll get right to the point: I’m 100 percent Team Cozzie and it has nothing to do with age.

I wore a bikini after I turned 50 and then I gave it up, the day I realized I looked better in a one-piece, and I’m not just talking about the fact that my wobbly torso was hidden from view.

I’m talking about discovering the figure-flattering properties of a fantastic swimsuit (it was Boden, more on that in a moment).

Until then, I had believed that bikinis were the most flattering option, in part because all the swimsuits I tried flattened my very small breasts, clung to my contours, and made me look flat-chested and elongated.

Obviously there were swimsuits with supportive cups etc, but they looked so matronly compared to the bikinis. And it cannot be denied that for 60 years the bikini is what you wear if you can, while the swimsuit is for when you can’t anymore.

It’s a gem: the Diamond Wave Pattern Capri, £80, boden.co.uk

I understand. I thought switching from a bikini to a one-piece was the first sign of old age, like getting a non-slip bathroom mat. All I can say is that I wish the one-piece suits that exist now had existed when I was young because the right one can reshape you and make you look slimmer, smoother and firmer, whatever your age.

Once I made the switch, I felt contained and empowered in the same way you feel when wearing a corset dress, only much more comfortable.

Oh, what clever tricks the people of Boden have employed, God bless them. One of the disadvantages of many swimsuits is the high cut of the legs, which is too exposed.

The ideal is high enough to elongate the leg but low enough to keep the butt well covered, and this is what Boden does so well, often with the use of contrasting darker piping to make the legs of the suit appear more cropped. that they really are. (They also use the same trick on the sides to make you look a few inches narrower.)

Plus, with Boden you can specify a cup size, whether you choose Capri or Color Pop (£80 and £85 at boden.co.uk). In my size, the Capri fits perfectly, although in the same size in Color Pop I looked like I was wearing Jane Russell’s bra, so there is some inconsistency there.

Otherwise, the cups are set and lightly padded – just the right amount of support for an average bust. They also offer a longer body option (strangely, it doesn’t seem to need it, so if in doubt, try the regular fit first). The backs of their costumes are cut in the sweet middle ground: neither too high (the body is elongated), nor too low (too fleshy).

On top of all that, their bright colors and fresh prints can’t be beat.

Which brings us to Santorini (£70). This style, with its wide, self-tied halter neckline and colored side bands that take off inches, was my lightbulb moment swimsuit. It’s still my favorite (currently the best color combination it comes in: shocking pink with frog green and navy) along with the contrasting wrap halterneck Kefalonia (£70).

Into the blue: Boden Capri in Floret Paisley, £80, boden.co.uk

Like magic: tummy control swimsuit with removable straps and ruching, £32.50, marksandspencer.com

LR: Boden Capri in Floret Paisley, £80, boden.co.uk; Tummy control swimsuit with removable straps and ruching, £32.50, marksandspencer.com

The combination of bright colors and quality fabrics (they last and last) makes them look elegant and expensive.

Otherwise, the Levanzo Halter (£70), ruched for extra coverage, is a great bet and comes in seven good simple prints, red and black.

Why buy somewhere else if it’s such good news? For lightness, perhaps (in very hot weather, the containing virtues of Boden suits can seem restrictive) and if you want to spend a little less.

The obvious place to look is Marks & Spencer. But of the six middle-aged-friendly styles I just tried, all of them were too high in the back for me and too high in the legs (even in the locker room I routinely pulled the costume down to cover my butt).

The magical promise of 360 shaping is delivered: her tummy control swimsuit with removable and ruched straps (£32.50 marksandspencer.com) was flattering and lightweight, but still too high on the leg.

At John Lewis there’s the promise of a tummy control wrap (£42, johnlewis.com), but it comes with a plunging neckline and those overly rounded leg holes.

Panos Emporio’s slim V-neck style (£63.20) does what it says on the tin, but only comes in black and navy and a couple of scruffy prints.

John Lewis’ own-brand V-front style in cream with black stripes (£40) is as stylish as they come, but none of the above have the sleek, water-and-sun-ready look of men’s suits. a Boden piece. Sometimes it’s worth paying a little more.

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