The Most Flattering Swimsuit For Your Body Type

06/30/2015 07:58 am ET

These figure fixers make you look smashing, no matter your body type.

By Adam Glassman

  • Peter Rosa and Richard Majchrzak/Studio D
    Q: "Like so many women, I'd love a suit that will tame my tummy. What should I look for if I want the ultimate smoothing effect?"

    A: Ruching, wrap details, color blocking, and built-in shapewear are your friends. Each of these suits uses visual trickery and well-placed color to draw the eye away from trouble spots.

    Clockwise starting with model:

    1. Available in sizes 12-32. ($89, torrid.com)

    2. Pretty pleats camouflage lumps and bumps. Available in sizes 4 to 16. (Calvin Klein, $128; macys.com)

    3. A side-tie wrap cinches the waist. Available in sizes 6 to 16 (Gottex, $182; bloomingdales.com)

    4. Asymmetrical ruching smooths all over. Available in sizes 8 to 16. (Magicsuit, $166; lordandtaylor.com)

    5. Has a seaming, color blocking, and tummy-control fabric. ($138, tommybahama.com)
  • Peter Rosa
    Q: "What suits will support my big chest yet still look sexy?"

    A: First of all, step away from the triangle top! Same goes for string bikinis—they'll just make your boobs look droopy. Choose a top with underwire, wide straps, and bra sizing to ensure proper fit and strong support. This retro-inspired two-piece shows off a curvy shape beautifully.

    Swimsuit top available in sizes 28D to 38H. (Cleo by Panache, top, $65, and bottom, $40; barenecessities.com)
  • Ben Goldstein/Studio D and Peter Rosa
    Q: "Do I need to avoid color and prints if I'm plus-size? I don't want to limit myself to black or navy."

    A: Absolutely not! You can embrace color and patterns. Just use them wisely. Contrast piping is one way to create interest and direct the eye in a flattering way; ruching and wrap details are slimming, too. You want to keep prints on a small scale, or choose suits that use them as accents. I'm crazy about ready-to-wear designer Sophie Theallet's new swimwear collection for Cacique at Lane Bryant. Her unique color combos and high-fashion draping flatter all sizes.

    On model: $130, lanebryant.com

    Right: Top, $90, and bottom, $60; lanebryant.com
  • Pear Shape
    Devon Jarvis/Studio D
    The Fix: Look for suits that are bright on top and dark on the bottom, retro-inspired one pieces that skim the hips, and deep V necklines that elongate the torso.

    From left to right:

    1. A black higher-cut bottom minimizes your lower half and elongates your legs. ($100, llbean.com)

    2. Flowy fabric provides extra hip coverage. Available in sizes 4 to 16 and 16W to 22W. (Lauren Ralph Lauren, $114; macys.com)

    3. Ruffles and a plunging neckline draw the eye upward. (Zinke, $126; shopbop.com)
  • Small Bust
    Richard Majchrzak/Studio D
    The Fix: Choose padded push-up tops, eye-catching patterns, embellishments, and ruching. They all add va-va-volume.

    From left to right:

    1. Boost your bust with push-up gel cups. The top is available in sizes 30B to 38B. (Top, $75, and bottom, $35; landsend.com)

    2. A well-placed bow adds oomph to a strapless suit. (Kate Spade, $151; shopbop.com)

    3. A structured top makes the most of what you've got. (Top, $71, and bottom, $57; bleurodbeattie.com)
  • Athletic Shape
    Devon Jarvis/Studio D
    The Fix: Show off your sculpted shoulders and arms with one-shoulder and racer-front styles. Graphic patterns and side panels add curves.

    From right to left:

    1. A one-shoulder design and color blocking create a shapely look. (Vince Camuto, $102; zappos.com)

    2. Dark side panels cut a curvaceous figure. ($40; downeastbasics.com)

    A racer-front top flatters the shoulders. (Jag, top, $72, and bottom, $56; dillards.com)
  • No Butt, No Problem
    Marko Metzinger/ Studio D
    If you're the opposite of bootylicious, don't fret. One-pieces can flatten, so to enhance your lower half, look for bikinis with ruffles, ruching, and details that give you a little something extra.

    Left: A flirty bow perks up your posterior. (Top and bottom, $153 each; marysiaswim.com)

    Right: Ruching adds volume and lift. Comes in sizes 4 to 14. (La Blanca, top $57, and bottom, $49; lablancaswim.com)
  • Not-So-Basic Backs
    Peter Rosa
    Now you can make a grand exit, too! Whether they're intricate straps or daring peekaboos, back details, a big runway trend, guarantee a second look.

    From left to right:

    1. Trina turk, $140; neimanmarcus.com

    2. Arizona, $60; jcpenny.com

    3. $175; issademar.com

    4. $72; victoriassecret.com

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