The Metro.Style Swimsuit Project: Expert Guide On Finding The Best Swimsuit For Your Body Type
We've all been there—we spot a cute swimsuit on a rack at one of our favorite shopping spots and can't wait to try it on in the changing room. It turns out to be the perfect color with a pocket-friendly price tag, and you know it'll go well with all the summer accessories you own—bags, earrings, cover ups, and sunglasses included.
But alas; a high-cut bikini line exposes the stretch marks on your thighs and bum, a strappy top calls attention to your heavy breasts, and a waist band that barely stretches to accommodate your figure doesn't quite flatter you in ways you expected.
The swimsuit goes back on the rack, but something else gets left behind in the store, too—your self-confidence.
The seemingly harmless experience leaves a dent on the way you see yourself. Just like that, the beach trip you've been looking forward to doesn't seem to be the most exciting thing on your agenda this summer—all because of the feeling that the skin you're in and the body that's yours don't quite reflect the images of the women we see in social media posts and billboards making the most out of swimsuit season.
But hold on a second—who's to say that only a tiny percentage of women with svelte physiques and "blemish-free" complexions are allowed to bare their arms, legs, tummies, and everything in-between this time of the year? Who's to say that that swimsuit belongs only in their closet, and not in yours, too?
So say it with us, loud and proud: this summer is your summer, and it's certainly the summer when you not only learn, but live, the lessons of body positivity and self-love!
At Metro.Style, we truly believe that every body is a swimsuit body.
We're big opponents to the belief that modelesque ladies are the only ones who can feel their best come beach season. We are huge advocates of being a hundred percent accepting of every body shape there is in existence, plus the natural processes that govern women's bodies and the physical changes that result from them.
In our book, nursing mothers are allowed to wear bikinis. Full-figured girls are definitely most welcome to flaunt their assets in a swimsuit they love. Athletic women look killer in their work out gear, and in a bathing suit. Petite gals and flat-chested women are just as sexy on the beach, too!
Really—it's all about loving and owning your body. It's a lesson we've been told time and time again, but we remind all women that we dress up for ourselves and not for others. And besides, what else would you wear to the beach other than a swimsuit that makes you feel just as hot, or heck, even hotter, than the sun blazing down on you?
With this in mind, we developed the ultimate guide to help you find the best swimsuit for your body type. With the rise of more and more fashion labels that feel the same way about body positivitiy as we do, we're happy to say that more women can rediscover the joys of shopping for swimwear this summer and beyond—sans their insecurities and fears of not finding a style, size, or cut that suits them to a tee.
Featuring real women from different fields combined with expert opinions from fashion veterans like our very own Metro Magazine Executive Editor Kat Cruz-Villanueva, this ultimate swimwear guide serves to prove to women that they are, in fact, swimsuit-ready in their own right and have nothing else to worry about besides staying happy and healthy.
So without further ado, here to be with you during this summer's swimsuit shopping spree is our clickable swimsuit guide below. To know more about which swimwear style flatters you most, click on the body type you most identify with!
Women with Athletic Bodies
Athletic-bodied women are characterized by having tight and well-defined muscle tone. Their beauty lies in how noticably strong they look, but what stands out the most in this body type are their mildly curved waists; their silhouette mostly resembles that of a rectangle, or sometimes, an inverted triangle.
Fine examples of this body type are influencer and full-time mom Jackie Go, former soccer coach and rowing instructor-to-be Kali Huff, and bodybuilding competitor Patricia Ramos. Each of them have embraced their unique shapes, and although they all have atheltic builts, they've also taken the time to figure out which of their assets they'd like to highlight the most!
Jackie is into styles that draw the eyes to her waist, Kali is head over heels for styles that accentutate her chest, while Patricia is all about triangle-shaped tops (as she feels that they're the most suitable for her small cup-size) and bottoms with a decent amount of coverage.
To score expert tips on how to style athletic bodies, click here!
Kali Huff is a one-piece suit from Coral Swimwear (@coralswimwearph)
Jackie Go dons a two-piece set from Float Swimwear (@float_swim)
Patricia Ramos is clad in a vibrant bikini set from Cocotini (@cocotiniresortwear)
Women with Large Busts
Women with heavy chests can be tricky to style, as aside from needing adequate support, they require swimwear that isn't prone to wardrobe malfunctions. They're definitely going to need to strike a balance between secure and sexy, but trust us, it's easier than it seems!
Writer Shen Cala-Or, actress Kate Alejandrino, and PR gal and beauty blogger Marj Sia have learned how to address these concerns over the years, perfecting the art of looking as hot as can be, without the risk of dreaded nip slips and worse!
Specifically, Shen concentrates on picking up pieces with a slimming effect and style with comfort as a top priority, too. Marj on the other hand is particular about a suit that has ample padded support to help lift and sculp, rather than flatten, her chest. Last but not least, Kate—who loves to tan in skin-revealing bikinis!—prefers bikinis that hug her curves.
To know more about this body type and which suits flatter it best, read this expert guide!
Shen Cala-Or wears a breast feeding-friendly suit from Float Swimwear (@float_swim)
Marj Sia is clad in a nautical number from Agua Brazilian Swimwear (@aguabrazilianswimwear)
Kate Alejandrino rocks a coral bikini set from Naked Sun Swimwear (@nakedsunswimwear)
Women with Small Cups
The issue we have about perceptions of women with flat chests is that they're often seen as "less" womanly and alluring. But let us be the first to say that having more subtle curves isn't a lack of femininity! Flat chested ladies are definitely "womanly" and beautiful, too—it's all just a matter of finding the right pieces to flatter your body.
For women with this body type, one tip to remember is to draw the attention to the shoulders and neck. This way, dainty collarbones and bare shoulders are emphasized. Believe us when we say that the small detail in your swimsuit choice makes a huge impact.
NGO and human rights worker April Gomez Baldovino fits the bill for this body type and tells us exactly how she's gone through swimsuit shopping over the years. According to her, comfort is always, always queen! It won't matter if it's the cutest swimsuit you've ever seen if you're forever conscious about straps getting untied or pads moving about. Always prioritize security.
Check this out if you've got a body type just like this and want tips for swimwear this summer!
April Gomez Baldovino is clad in a ruffled bikini set from Agua Brazilian Swimwear (@aguabrazilianswimwear)
Ladies with pear-shaped bodies, raise your hand high and proud!
Bottom-heavy women have fuller bums, wider hips, and thicker thighs. Women with this body type thoroughly blessed in the curves department!
Howevever, the challenge here is to make sure that the right humps and bumps show. Just as busty girls need to take extra care of finding ample support for their chests, pear-shaped ladies need to do the same to make sure they aren't too cheeky!
Plus-size model Yma Cuervo, athlete and Sweet Escape country manager Ally Gonzales, and Metro Society editorial assistant Pilar Recto can all vouch for this.
Collectively, they all want something flattering and will make them feel proud of what they have; never assume that full-figured girls want to cover up as much as possible. Individually, Pilar always has her eyes set on simple string cuts and lots of V-necks, wheras Ally is into high-legged and high-waisted bottoms that show off her length and abs and Yma's goal is ultimately just to find something that flatters her perfectly, regardless of style.
Read our expert guide to learn all the ways to style this body type for swimsuit season! Click HERE.
Yma Cuervo is clad in a wrap around suit from Float Swimwear (@float_swim)
Ally Lim-Gonzales is wearing a minty two-piece ensemble from Sycamore Swimwear (@sycamoreswimwear)
Pilar Recto is wearing a one-piece swimsuit from Coral Swimwear (@coralswimwearph)
Being petite with a shorter-than-usual built and much smaller proportions overall is a double-edge sword.
With their figures looking great in practically any RTW piece, it's a blast shopping for free-size finds in Manila-based shops. However, when it comes to swimsuit shopping, it's a totally different situation. A lot of pieces may seem ill-fitting, and just plain frumpy.
In fact, we've heard of petite-sized women tempted to browse the kids' or teens' sections where it's likelier to find a one-piece suit or bikini in the right size. But of course, children's collections don't always offer suitable patterns, designs, colors, and cuts an adult women wants in her beach wardrobe!
Ava Te-Zabat, a full-time mom and lifestyle blogger, and Michelle Cruz, country marketing lead for Klook, are more than familiar with the challenges that petite women face. How do they work around them? Michelle picks classic and comfy one-piece suits over trendier bikinis, while Ava has her heart set on functional, conservative suits in light colors that are easy to mix and match with her existing wardrobe.
For all the petite girls looking for styling tips for all their swimwear needs, READ THIS.
Michelle Cruz sports a one-piece suit from Coral Swimwear (@coralswimwearph)
Ava Te-Zabat dons a cute, flirty set from Pearly Pop Swimwear (@pearlypopswimwear)
And with that, we hoped we at Metro.Style have empowered you to have a blast the next time you're out for swimsuit shopping this season. Appreciate the bigger picture, which is all about you and self-love!
All these women—who boast of very different body types and takes on style—prove just how much we're the same in our differences and yes, insecurities, too. All women have at one point or another stressed about stretch marks, scars, rolls, lumps, bumps, and more which, when viewed from a totally different perspective, simply all mean that every body, every woman (and every man, too) is coming from the exact same place about their physical appearances.
It shows that no body is immaculate and the standard of "perfect" bodies has never, and can't exist.
What's real, however, is how we practice body positivity and cultivate acceptance and appreciation in what we see in the mirror—whether it's a body in a bikini, a power suit, jeans and a tee, or nothing at all! It takes practice, but over time and with a consistently positive mindset, we guarantee you'll feel a surge of self-confidence, one that will never fade.
So when you're ready, and you will be, go back to that swimsuit rack, figurative or literal, that you left behind and give yourself what you deserve—an awesome swimsuit season ahead, and an even more awesome outlook on body love.
Produced by Hershey Neri (@heyhershey)
Photography by Ria Regino (@riaregino)
Creative direction by Chookie Cruz (@theonlychookiecruz)
Written by Sara de los Reyes (@saraloopdeloop)
Styled by John Karunungan (@johnkaranungan) and Hillary Lee (@hi_hieellz) of Styleditgroup (@styleditgroup)
Makeup by Myrtle Ruaza Gallardo on April and Michelle; Bea Hernandez (@beahernandezmakeup) on Yma, Jackie, and Ava; Acie Forés Romero-Salas (@aciefores) on Shen and Pilar; Arianne Sevilla (@makeupbyariannei) on Patricia and Kali; and Kristel Yap (@kristelyap_makeup) on Kate, Marj, and Ally, in partnership with Inglot Philippines (@inglotph)
Hair by Jayr Tuliao and Joshua Estrope of Bianca Festejo Salon (@Bianca Festejo Salon), and
Sam Corbillon and Jennifer Pascual of Triple Luck Brow & Nail Salon (@tripleluckbrowandnailsalon)
Editorial Assistant: Cara Tirona
Special thanks to Pria’s Kitchen (@priaskitchen)