GretchCannon: Swimwear Shopping

2.03.2017

Swimwear Shopping


I am a grown ass woman. I am 36 years old. I have been around the block.. in the sense that I went from having a strong, fit body (and mind!), so being very ill for years on end. I was down to a very unhealthy thin weight at my sickest. Now, thanks to modern medicine, I am doing SO much better. I have also gained weight, half of it is healthy and the second half is extra... and guess what? I am OK with that.

I know this a post about swimwear, but I am going to get a little bit deeper today - which I actually do QUITE often in my personal life, but I try to keep my blog light and fun and shopping and beauty and all of the fun things. But, life is life, and things get really real when you gotta go swimwear shopping after gaining LOTS of sizes in clothing and having a new body to buy a swimsuit for! If you are a Mom, or have ever gained or lost weight for ANY reason, I am sure you can relate!

I used to actually kind of HOARD bikinis. I don't know why. I just liked to have a variety, and you never know what you are going to feel like wearing on vacation or how bloated you might be from eating and drinking and lounging! Also, the trends and the seasons change, the styles change, depending on what your destination is you might wear a different suit, you can never really sell a nice swimsuit after wearing it, and you know.. breaking up and donating or tossing is just hard for me to do sometimes. Also, I might see the suit online and think I am going to look like the photo or the model if I buy it. Which doesn't happen. So I keep buying.

So, I have some trips coming up this year and spring is around the corner (that is crazy to say!). I bought some one pieces last year when I went to Los Cabos, Mexico with James and his family, because frankly I did not fit in any of my old bikinis anymore, and I did not feel comfortable exposing all that skin! I felt like the one pieces I was wearing there were too big though! I got some cute ones from Macy's, Target, and TJ Maxx, I think. Too much fabric hanging off of me though, and it made me feel heavy from the water, like I had clothes on in the pool. So, I visited Nordstrom a few weeks ago, and after a marathon dressing room situation, in which my sweet Mom was called in to peek at everything, I left with nothing. I repeat, I bought nothing!

I wish I could work out like I used to. I wish I could eat as healthy as I used to. I am working on it. I lack a lot of energy and I missed a lot of life. I don't love going up in jeans sizes, but I love feeling better. I used to tell my family that I would "gain all the weight in the world, if I could just feel better!".. and now I feel better, so I CHOOSE to love my body, even when my jeans are tight and I have to buy new bathing suits! This body has been through hell and back, and I am going to be as nice to my body (and mind!) as I possibly can. We will be in Hawaii in 5 weeks. I am not going to starve myself or do some miracle bootcamp workout to get into a smaller size bathing suit or dress by that time. It is not realistic and it is not healthy for me. I don't actually really CARE that I have a new, slightly larger body. Hopefully one day, I can work out again, and become stronger and healthier again. But, for now, I am getting used to it and I love myself more and I also LOVE that I am able to go on a trip with my boyfriend for his work. I also get to see my best friend, who moved there last year! I am very blessed.

Anyways, trying on bathing suits in a department store dressing room is not a good time y'all. I don't think it probably is for anyone, with any size body. We are our own worst critic anyways, and staring at yourself in all these weirdly lighted angles is not cool. LOL! So, after this fiasco, I took to the internet, searched high and low, and guess what?.. Freaking Target does it again. That's a hashtag, right? #targetdoesitagain ?? -- So, before my rant got going, I wanted to show you guys some of the suits I got after ordering several styles online and I will be going to the store to return the ones I did not like.

I am sure everyone's body is different, but when you are thin, or even athletic, you buy certain bikinis and you are good to go. You can loosen the sides of the bottoms, get a different top. Maybe you have a bigger chest, you get a bigger top or a more supportive top. Now, in one pieces AND tankinis, I found that I don't like the following features the most: a high back on the swimsuit (too tight and constricted feeling), a low back on the swimsuit (too much back rolling around back there), and too much fabric all around (feels like I am wearing loose, heavy, wet clothes when I get in the water). The ones pictured and linked below are the ones I kept and I will tell you why! Let's get to it..

I found a style that flattered me, and I guess I stuck to it! I got 3 tankini tops, shown and linked below. These tops are not tight on my back and stomach, but the material is thin enough that I don't feel like I am going to be floating in heavy clothes. The bra area around my torso is a little tight in the medium size, but I think I would be pulling up the size large all day, so I am going to stick to the mediums and hope they work! The top 2 have so many different patterns. I actually love them all, but these colors and patterns spoke to me. The material on the bottom is sheer, but not too sheer, and the straps are removable, as you can see.


I was thinking I was going to send this next one back, because I liked the lightweight fabric of the ones above, but I ended up loving this one too. I always like to have a basic black piece with me on vacation too, so this is perfect. 


Now, I know I have tons of old bathing suits, and I have always had curvy hips, so I usually go up a size in bottoms anyways. Some of my old black or solid bikini bottoms might still fit me, and I will dig through them, but how cute is this high waist swim brief, that covers everything, is not too tight, and just fits right up under those flowy tankini tops!? I got a large in these and they feel comfortable. 


I almost forgot, I got a 1-piece as well! This also kind of follows the same rules I found out or created for my body - covers all of the right things, but there is not not too much fabric and the fit is not too tight. I also thought the royal plum color was really pretty and kind of different! 


I hope this helped someone out there, someway, somehow. I feel like I opened up and became a little more vulnerable by sharing this with you guys - swimwear shopping and especially swimwear wearing - are very revealing and sometimes tough things for us to do as women. I want to really spread a positive body image message around though, and if you think swimsuit shopping sucks - I feel you girl!... But, take a moment to love your body parts. Be thankful for those hips that you bore children with, those breasts you breastfed with, those legs that you can walk on, those arms that can do so many things for you, that booty that you get to sit on.. all of these are blessings and I just want us all to be thankful for them, instead of putting ourselves down! Rock that body, girls! I love you all! 

Where are you buying swimwear from this year? 

Did you buy anything super cute that you want to share? Please do!

P.S. No, this post is not sponsored by Target, but I really wish it was! 

XOXO,
GretchCannon


29 comments:

  1. These are terrific and it's always good to have more options/websites to find a good suit.

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  2. I can totally relate to this post! I've been shopping at swimsuits for all for two seasons now and just love their high waisted bikinis and super stylish tankinis.

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    1. Oh good - thank you Mary Alice. The price point is perfect, too - I think!

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  3. Yes I agree we gotta treat our bodies well and with respect. Any abuse to it will incur a debt that will eventually have to be paid back. Wishing you all the very best in your journey to a healthier, happier new you!

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    1. Thank you so much! That means so much to me!

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  4. These suits are so cute. Loving the animal print.

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  5. I love the overall message of accepting your body in this post - it took me a very long time to be able to accept mine, and that journey even inspired one of my novels. You chose some beautiful swimsuits to feature here, too. My favorites are also tankinis - I like how you can customize the size by getting tops and bottoms that fit well, while still getting the coverage of a one piece.

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    1. Me too - omg thank you! I am going to wear them next week in HAWAII!

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  6. I am so happy that you are healthy again! I remember when you were posting your troubles on Instagram regarding your illness and my heart broke for you. I think it's hard to see our bodies change as we get older but it's a part of life. The best we can do is embrace ourselves and be thankful for good health. That's what matters most!

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    1. Thank you! I am so thankful too - those were dark times with NO hope. So, swimsuit shopping - while it can be horrifying - is NOT something to be sad about for me right now - or should it be for anyone anytime! And my body is far from perfect. And I am SO ok with that, as long as my health has improved. Nothing matters when you are sick! I weighed less than 100 lbs! Now I have gained well over 30 lbs back. I have read your posts before about body image, so I was hoping you would check it out. I am inspired by all of the body positive things and role models I see out there these days, and I think that helped me too! Also - should I do more posts like this? I kind of enjoyed getting a little deep there.

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  7. Can i just say amen!!! I love that these cover and are cute!!!! Cuz lets be honest its not the strip club its the beach and kids are there.

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    1. OMG that is a very good point and I LOVE IT! Thank you!

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  8. I love a classic one piece on a woman. As a man we are always plagued with bikinis as being sexy but to see a classy woman wearing a great one piece offers a unique and sexy vibe that cant be beat

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  9. I actually did! Super cute 1 piece from victoria secret. During their flash swimsuit sale last november or so. I couldn't help myself. Now I can't wait for summer!

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  10. Love these swimsuits! Target does have a great collection of swimsuits for every shape and size.


    http://prettyfitfoodie.com/2017/02/01/valentines-day-dresses-under-100/

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  11. Oh my goodness! I seriously went through all these feels just a few days ago. I brought about 15 pieces into the dressing room to try, and NOT ONE fit right! I'm still adjusting to my body after being sick as well, and it was so depressing. To add more, I left the dressing room with my toddler, and the dressing room attendant asks, "You didn't like any of these?" Seriously lady?! Of course I liked them! That's why I tried them! UGH!

    Anyway, I love your post and your openness to talk about your struggle, because the struggle is real!! Keep slaying though, you'll look great in whichever one you choose, they're all really cute!

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  12. I was very sick until I had my first child. Now I am bigger than I have ever been in my life. I'm not sure I'm okay with it, but I like it better than when I was dangerously thin. I wear one pieces now because I don't quite look good in bikinis and they've always made me uncomfortable anyway. I love that crochet mossimo, it's gorgeous!

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  13. It took me awhile to get over the idea of how exposed bathing suits make a person. Now, I say, flaunt what you got. We all need to embrace what we have and love ourselves.

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  14. I usually go for a one piece and even then, I may wear something over it. But I really love the plum one piece! Love purple.

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  15. I like your selection:) I will wate with my shopping till I loose some weight:D

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  16. Ugh I agree with you there, I hate shopping for these! I love Target too though, they do come up with some cute and perfect fit swimwear options!

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  17. I used to hate shopping for swimwear in malls, I would just ask for my size, pay for it and leave. I usually pick the ones that can cover as much area as it can. Now, I don't really mind anymore. I just want to wear what I feel like wearing.

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  18. I love the black laser cut tankini. Tankinis are the greatest gift from the fashion Gods since Spanx!

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  19. I like tankinis and rash guards! They give you the perfect cover-up that you need without having to sacrifice comfort. These are great choices!

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  20. I too horde bikini tops. I gain and lose weight all the time and swimsuits, like jeans are something I hate shopping for.

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  21. I love all of these suits! I really love those high waisted that are on trend for a few seasons now!

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Thanks for commenting!

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