Swimsuits for pear shapes 2015

Our in-house expert, the Bikini Whisperer, is back guiding readers through their trickiest swimwear questions. Today’s question:

Hi Bikini Whisperer,

I’m a pear shape — I usually buy large bikini bottoms with a small top. What swimsuits are the best for my body type and are there any that I shouldn’t wear?


The Bikini Whisperer responds:

It sounds like you definitely are a pear shape with a heavier bottom frame, which is totally peachy. I wouldn’t refrain from any particular bikini or one-piece swimsuit — if you love it, rock it! It’s all about confidence! No matter what you wear, it’s the body acceptance and self-love that outweighs any slendering fashion trick. If you already got that commanding bikini babe vibe and all you want to do is accentuate your best assets, the bikini tips below will do you just fine.

If you have a bikini question for the Bikini Whisperer, send it here!

Helen Jon Del Rey one-piece swimsuit in laguna, $159

A great rule to follow: select pieces that draw focus to the upper part of the body, never the lower half. You can accomplish this with the right placement of a dominating print, color block, or embellishment — this one-piece swimsuit illustrates this clearly. Make sure to choose a print which lays on top and is broken up at the waist with a pop of color block, solid or a subtle/less busy print below.

Lolli Kat Cut Out Halter one-piece swimsuit in peaches n cream stripes, $149

We know vertical stripes elongate and horizontal widen, so this play of stripe placement is ideal for narrowing hips and balancing the top half. You can never go wrong with an attention-grabbing cut-out that sits on the upper torso.

Moeva Bridget Gold Belt one-piece swimsuit in wild orchid, $459

And if you’re feeling risqué, plunging necklines are meant for your specific body shape. They sail the eye from navel to face, taking attention away from the unbalanced bottom. Plus, a dramatic belt defines and cinches at the waist to exaggerate your womanly curves.

Norma Kamali Stud Slip Mio one-piece swimsuit in studded black, $549

It’s always nice to add a bit of volume where it is minimal. This studded one-piece swimsuit highlights the bust region, creating an illusion of added dimension which balances your frame.

Raisins Curve Tortuga one-piece swimsuit in black, $89

A slimming black one-piece is never a bad idea, especially with added volume placed where it’s needed the most. Look for swimwear that features 3D details like flounce, ruffles, big bows or textures in the top — it lends that instant balancing trick.

Beach Riot Marina Shoulder Tie bikini top in vintage floral, $95 and Beach Riot Hayden TIe Side Cheeky bikini bottom in vintage floral, $88

Choosing adjustable ties that sit at the hip is key. Avoid any bulges and let the tie sit nicely high at the hip, which elongates legs and narrows the body’s width.

Jade Swim Apex One Shoulder bikini top in sky, $89 and Jade Swim Bound High Waisted bikini bottom in sky, $89

If we’re playing with illusions and fit, a seamless high-waist bottom paired with an interesting bikini top that demands attention balances your frame, appearing closer to an hourglass body type. Dramatic asymmetrical cuts on top with clean lines on the bottom half do the trick.

Lolli Peach Lover bikini bralette in peaches n cream stripes, $99 and Lolli Peach Lover Hipster bikini bottom in peaches n cream stripes, $99

The flirtiest way to balance a bottom-heavy frame are obvious playful motifs that sit at the bust. This peachy patch and vertical stripe combination is genius keeping the eye moving up and down rather than side to side.

MGS Low Tide Triangle bikini top in black with gold, $89 and MGS Low Tide Skimpy bikini bottom in black with gold, $69

Here’s another way to play with patches or embroidery placements. Notice the V-neck bikini top which accentuates the breast, taking most of the attention away from your hips.

Finding excellent bathing suits for a pear shape is easy once you know the basics. There are many more options than there used to be and you can feel confident about looking evenly proportioned while having fun in the sun.

Swimsuits for Bottom-Heavy Figures

The classic problem most pear-shaped women find is that a suit that fits at the bottom will sag on the top. Despite the fact that the pear shape is the most common in women, there have traditionally been few suits that were designed to fit and flatter them. However, you now have a number of options, not least are that tops and bottoms can now be purchased separately.

For women who want to hide their lower portions, a swim skirt is a good way to go. Some pear shapes will find that boy shorts can make them look squat, but a skirt adds texture and flow to the body. These don’t have to be huge granny skirts – there are plenty of cute skirts available. You can find one that will match a bikini top that shows off your slim torso – if nothing else, a black skirt will always match everything.

The other option is a folded bikini bottom. The folding will hide curves and give you a streamlined look.

Showing off Curves

Contrary to what the media often says, big hips are sexy. Many bathing suits for a pear shape are bikinis that let a woman flaunt her figure as she likes. For those worried about looking too small on top, almost all bikini tops come with removable pads.

A great way to wear a bikini to the most flattering effect is to opt for a darker color bottom. This will draw attention upwards and create more balance to your figure. You might also opt for a top with detailing, such as a pattern or even ruffles or other trim. You can get away with whatever you like for the top. However, you want to keep the bottom as simple as possible. Folds are great, but avoid patterns and especially ruffles, as these can create bulk, rather than streamlining your shape.

One Pieces for Pear Shapes

The classic bathing suit for pear shapes is a one-piece because the idea used to be that a woman with large hips shouldn’t show them off. Now you can get one-pieces that are still sexy and allow you to show off as much as you want. The best option for a pear shape is a suit with a plunging neckline. Again, this draws attention upward.

You can also choose a suit with asymmetrical shoulders, or a strapless option. Many pear-shaped women have narrow shoulders and a suit in this style will show them off very well. If you are going on a cruise, you might be amazed at how a simple strapless one-piece, just in black and with some ruching across the belly will get you a lot of flattering attention.

If you want the look of a one-piece and the convenience of a two-piece, opt for a tankini. Look for a fitted top with a sexy neckline and dark bottoms. Many tankinis will also come with matching swim skirts.

Accessorize Your Swimwear

The best accessory for a pear shaped woman is always the classic sarong. Whether you are wearing a bikini or a one-piece, tying a sarong around your waist will add to your style and attitude. Many suits come with matching sarongs, or you can get a plain suit and a collection of sarongs to maintain variety throughout the summer. If you are lounging, rather than swimming, also consider jewelry. A beaded necklace or something with a bit of shimmer will help keep attention away from your hips and give you a bit more style as well. And of course, never step into the sun without a big hat!

Do you tend to gain weight around your hips and thighs, but stay slim up top? If so, you’re a pear shape, just like the fruit. It’s a curvy, bootylicious body type that’s incredibly feminine and sensual, and something you have in common with Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez and Beyoncé to name just a few of our favourite pear-shaped celebs!

We think pear-shaped bodies are gorgeous, but if you’re feeling self-conscious about your wide hips then there are some really easy tips and tricks to choosing a swimsuit or bikini that makes them appear smaller. There’s no need to feel like you have to cover them up with a sarong!

Here’s how to choose swimwear that will flatter your pear shape, and below we’ve shared a list of products that were practically made for you and your body:

  • Dark on bottom, light on top – it’s common knowledge that black is slimming, but any dark colour will have the same effect. The aim is to balance out your curves, so ensure you’re only slimming your widest area by pairing it with a lighter colour up top.
  • Mix prints with plain – Busy prints draw attention, so divert eyes away from your bum by wearing swimwear that’s block-coloured on the bottom but printed on top.
  • Boost your bust – Another way to balance out wide hips is to make your bust look bigger. This could be through choosing a padded or push-up bikini top, or swimwear that’s textured only on the top half (think ruffles and 3D flowers!).
  • Go for high leg lines – Shortie-style bottoms can make pear-shapes look squat, whereas a high-cut leg will elongate your legs and make them look slimmer. High leg lines are a hot trend right now, so you’ll be right on style too!
  • Choose the right accessories – if you do want to wear a sarong, remember the plain/dark colour rules for your bottom half, and tie it asymmetrically so that it drapes down one side. It will be more flattering that straight-across-your-thighs. Remember to go for big and bold on your top half, so a wide-brimmed hat or statement necklace will work fabulously!

6 Swimsuits and Bikinis for Pear Shapes

Shop here: Black off-shoulder polkadot swimsuit

The sheer mesh side panels give the illusion of a high-cut leg line, whilst the ruffles and off-shoulder cut add width to the upper half of the body.

Shop here: Yellow ruffled bikini top & tie-side bottoms

The padding and layered ruffles make this bikini top perfect for adding volume to a smaller bust, whilst the darker-coloured bottoms slim down your hips.

The plain, dark bottoms slim your hips, whilst the light and colourful top draws attention to your upper half, with off-shoulder sleeves to add width here.

Shop here: Black swimsuit with waterfall ruffle

The eye-catching cascade of ruffles around the neckline draws the eye upwards, away from the undetailed bottom.

Shop here: Brown plait-detail bikini

The extra-wide shoulder straps on this chic, nude-toned bikini create the illusion of width, whilst the simple matching bottoms have the opposite effect.

Shop here: Pink floral halter bikini with lacing

Adding emphasis to your bust doesn’t have to be about padding and texture – it could just mean a cool, eye-catching detail such as the criss-cross lacing and extra-large tassels on this halter bikini top! Better yet, it’s light and printed on top, and plain and darker on the bottom.

These are just some of our swimwear options to suit a pear shape. Feel free to browse our entire swimwear range here if none of these are quite your style, using the tips above to help you pick out the perfect design.

How to select the right swimsuit for your body shape…

Determining your body shape is quite often the first step in finding a swimsuit that best compliments your shape.

The term ‘Body shape’ is given to describe the overall silhouette of the body, and although we are well aware that there will be women who will not fit into any one of the following body shapes, we have listed today’s five most recognized.

These guidelines (and please be aware that’s all they are) were created to assist you in buying the swimwear that best suits your body, so that you are left feeling happy on the inside, and looking great on the outside.

Arena Suits (left to right): Asymmetrical Stripes Triangle bikini, Tonal Leaves Knot one-piece & Little Pois Sliding Triangle bikini

The Hourglass Body Shape

The curvy hourglass body is identified by a small waist and proportional hips and chest. Women of this shape are extremely fortunate as they suit all types of swimwear.

Moderate-sized breasts look great in triangle or halter style tops, as these help show off the bust line. Match with triangular cut bottoms, or swimwear with a high-leg cut to elongate the legs. Larger breasted women should opt for more support, by way of underwired cups or a one-piece with full back and chest support.
Hourglass Body Shape Swimwear…

Arena Suits (left to right): Mosaic one-piece, Scuba Top Sport two-piece & Molivy one-piece…

The Rectangle (Ruler) Body Shape

Often slim and athletic in appearance, this body type has evenly proportioned shoulders and hips, but little waist definition. Ladies with this body shape are fortunate enough to suit almost all swimwear, but are often left desiring more curves.

The key to dressing this body type is create the illusion of having a waist. This can be achieved by adding volume to both the top and to the bottom, through the use of ruffles, bold design and a padded built-in bra. Swimsuits with waistbands, belts or colour-blocking at the midriff can really help create and define the waist. This also goes for coloured panels and seams at each side, that curve in toward the middle.
Rectangle (ruler) Body Shape Swimwear

Arena Suits (left to right): Scuba Double Straps one-piece, Ruth one-piece & Lyefe bikini…

The Inverted Triangle Body Shape

Distinguished by broad shoulders, narrow hips and relatively slender limbs, ladies with this body shape are often left desiring more balanced curves.

To create balance, the key is to add volume to the lower section of the body, so that eyes are averted away from the top half. This can be achieved by sticking to dark, neutral colours above the waist and bolder design and colour (including ties and detailing) below it. For larger breasted women, opt for swimsuits that have wide set straps, under-wiring and that offer good bust support.
Inverted Triangle Body Shape Swimwear

Arena Suits (left to right): Makimurax one-piece, Tonal Leaves Bandeau tankini & Moster one-piece

The Apple Body Shape

Characterized by a rounded upper midsection, the apple body shape typically has little waist definition, large bust and slim legs. Apple shaped women require a swimsuit that offers body control and one that visually separates the bust from the stomach.

Rouching (fabric that gathers) towards the middle of a swimsuit helps conceal or trim a fuller tummy, and can be extremely flattering. Suits with colour-blocking at the waist of dark coloured panels that curve in toward the body also create waist definition, and visibly separate the bust from the tummy. Look for body-shaping swimwear, that offers high support, tummy control and provides a built-in bra. Tankinis and full bottom swimsuits with ruffle details on the bottom of a suit creates balance by filling out the hips.
Apple Body Shape Swimwear…

Arena Suits (left to right): Tonal Leaves Bandeau tankini, Asymmetrical Stripes Neckholder bikini & College Bandeau two-piece

The Pear Body Shape

The pear shaped body tends to have a slender upper section (narrow shoulders and slim arms), defined waist and slim legs. Hips, thighs and bottom are larger in comparison, often leaving ladies with this body type desiring more balanced curves.

A padded bikini or swimsuit with attractive colours and accessories on the top half, such as ruffles or beads will draw attention away from the lower half, which in turn should remain neutral and dark in colour. Halter style tops provide the illusion of broader shoulders, which in turn help balance out the figure. Tankini style tops with square necks are also a good option, and will draw attention away from the hips…
Pear Body Shape Swimwear…

Affordable ladies swimwear for every body shape – part 2

Welcome back for part two of our ladies swimwear guide. Last week, we walked you through the type of swimwear that would look good on an apple or hourglass figure – and this week, our focus is on pear and rectangle body-shapes!*

Pear shape

If your hips are wider than your shoulders, you’re probably a pear shape. Dressing for this body shape is all about balance, so check out the following swimsuits to help you along:

Look 1: As pear shapes tend to be bottom heavy, balance this out by drawing as much attention to the top half of your body as possible. A plunging neckline will help you do this, as well as a two-toned swimsuit – this one from George at Asda is a delightful combination of both. At just £12, what more could you ask for?

Look 2: Sticking with the plunging theme, why not try this striped tankini set from F&F Tesco? The colourful print of this bikini will help you stand out from the crowd and the low cut bottoms won’t cut in on the thighs. Not bad for just £11, eh?

Look 3: A wrap bikini top will balance your figure, so go for something quirky like this printed bikini top and bottoms set from Primark. The Amalfi-inspired design on this bikini gives it a real quirky feel – making it look much more expensive than its £10 price tag!

Rectangle body shape

If you’re pretty much straight up and down, with your hips, waist and shoulders are all around the same width, it sounds as though you’re a rectangle body shape. The following swimsuits should flatter your athletic shape:

Look 1: Brighten up your summer with this orange space-dye bikini top and bottom set from Primark. Triangle tops like this one will help to break up the straight lines in your shape and draw attention to the curves that you do have. This set comes in at a cool £10 – can anyone say bargain?

Look 2: Frills and ruffles help to give the appearance of curves, so something like this paisley bikini top and bottoms set from Primark would make the perfect pick for the summer. Paisley is everywhere at the moment – so you’ll be bang on trend too!

Look 3: If you’d rather cover up a bit more, why not take a look at this frilled black swimsuit from H&M? This swimsuit is the ideal one-piece for an athletic body, as the cut-out design and frill detailing will help to give the illusion of curves. At just £19.99, this swimsuit is something that you could wear time and time again!

We hope our two-part guide has given you a better idea of the types of swimwear that would suit your body type. Just remember whether you’re going abroad or embarking on a staycation – confidence is the best accessory for any beach look, so strut your stuff with pride!

*Prices correct at time of writing – 22/06/15

To be able to choose the perfect bikini for the pear shape firstly you need to understand your body shape and what areas you should draw attention to and what areas you should draw attention away from.

Main Traits of a Pear Shape Figure.

  1. Wider hips and thighs
  2. Narrower shoulders
  3. Wider bottom
  4. Smaller bust

To create that body balance the pear shape woman should take emphasis away from the hips and draw it to the top half of your body. As bikinis are separate tops and bottoms they can be mixed and matched using design, pattern and colour to create that perfect bikini for a pear shaped woman.

Bikini Tops for Pear Shaped Women

Pear shaped figures should go for halter neck tankini tops, they will help to maximise the bust and broaden the shoulders too. Halter neck bikinis are also perfect for creating a fab cleavage and will help draw eyes up top.

Opt for padding in your tankini top and go for any length you feel comfortable in, if you don’t want to bare your stomach to all, then remember there are control tops available that help define a waist.

Pear and boyish figures will look fab in bandeau costumes, being smaller up top will suit the style of the swimsuit. They will also create the appearance of a more curvy, feminine you with it’s almost sweetheart neck line.

For pear shapes or women who don’t need the full support of an under-wired bikini consider a more padded non-wired top, this will help you appear bigger up top if that’s what you’re aiming for.

String bikinis don’t provide much support so are more suited to pears and boyish figures that tend have smaller and pert boobs. The triangle cups come with padding and without some even come with removable padding so if you want to appear fuller go for one with more padding.

Bikini Bottoms for Pear Shaped Women

Stick to high cut bottoms to help lengthen and slim out your legs, however if you’re happy with your shape then boy-shorts are a great way to flaunt big bums.

If you a pear shape with short legs then stick to costumes that are high cut to help elongate them and give the look of slimmer legs.

The classic bikini is perfect for apples, pears and hour glass figures!

Avoid bikini bottoms with side ties that fall on the hips as this will draw attention to that area and make you look bigger.

Avoid bikini bottoms that have a broad waistband that runs horizontal across the hips as again this emphasizes the hips. The same rule applies or horizontal stripes

When it comes to bikinis for some reason the less fabric your wearing the smaller you appear. This means that although string bikini bottoms do have full coverage over the bottom the minimal amount of fabric over the hips means that they suddenly appear smaller then they are, perfect for pears!

Looking for the Hollywood Bikini look, checkout what pear shaped celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez and Shakira