Maybe you feel the same way I do about this?
I’ve honestly struggled with feeling good in swimsuits my whole adult life. I’ve never really worn a bikini – only one piece’s for me. And I always wore shorts to cover my super chunky thighs.
But, being an Australian, I am a HUGE fan of summer. In fact, I have Heliophilia.
(N.) An addiction to the sun. Always needing it’s rays to survive life. Needing summer all year round.
Blue skies, warm weather, swimming.
But after spending this last winter (which went on forever) in Europe – I have to admit I’ve put on a little bit more than my usual winter weight. It was really cold alright – and I hate eating salad in winter! And as they say – ‘no good story ever started with a salad.’
But being summer it does bring around the biggest challenge of the season – buying a new swimsuit (cue dramatic music here: dun dun duuuun).
But a funny thing has happened in the past couple of years. Now that I’m over 30 I don’t really give a shit anymore what people think of how I look at the beach, or by the pool. I’m no longer looking around to see who might be looking at me, judging what I was wearing and how well I was wearing it. Sure I care about how I look – but I don’t care how someone else thinks I look.
And guess what – it’s a really nice feeling.
I am discovering more and more each day that I am incredibly comfortable with who I am as a human being.
I try to be a good person, I love my friends and family. I am lucky to be in a wonderful relationship with a man who loves me. And, I really give zero fucks what anyone outside of that bubble thinks of me anymore – being over 30 is great!
My personal feelings aside, we are currently living in an age that is quite interesting to watch unfold. In 2015 being comfortable with who you are is HOT! With models like Tess Holliday recently landing work at MiLK Management in the UK, making her the first model of her size to be signed to a major agency.
Ashley Graham the first Sports Illustrated plus sized model, who recently worked with Swimsuits For All in their #CurvesInBikinis campaign. Women all over the world are finally seeing others embrace their bodies all lumps and bumps included as they shout from the roof tops – “I’m Beautiful Being Me!”
This really is something I believe all women should start telling themselves more often. Let’s say it out loud right now – “I AM BEAUTIFUL BEING ME”. Now start saying it every day, and believe it more and more every day ok!
Where this all began…
A few months back I wrote an article that dealt with body image in the travel industry. For those who haven’t read it you can check it out here: I Have Curves and I Travel – Deal With It!
For everyone else, here’s a little reminder of what it was about: A woman commented on an newspaper article about our travel achievements, that I was ‘too overweight to travel the way I do’ – I decided to pen my own ‘fuck you’ response on this blog that you are reading right now.
This article had a huge impact with a lot of women out there of all shapes and sizes. You see, you don’t have to be overweight to have body image issues. All women have them – because we are women. It’s stupid but it’s the way we are.
I received so many emails from women from all over the world who were fighting their own body battles, that thanked me for “saying what needed to be said”. I honestly didn’t really know how to respond – I was so amazed with the response that I received.
“LOVE, LOVE. I totally agree that the most sought after images of female bloggers are the slimmer, sexy ladies and this drives me nuts. Nobody is two-dimensional and we all have bodies of different shapes and sizes (men too!). Bravo for writing this!”
– Jeannie Mark
“I never thought of it until I read this post. Travelers come in all shapes and sizes and you should tell that lady to kiss your fat ass.”
– Priya’s Obsession
“Thank you for writing this! I have been having insecurities about travelling to Southeast Asia later this month. I needed to hear this :)”
– Valerie Dailey
My story resonated with so many that even a few other bloggers came out and wrote about their own stories:
Coming Out of the Closet: I’m Size XX by Nomadic Chick
Is it so Bad Travelling With Big Breasts? By With Husband In Tow
I even sent the article to see what Dove thought AND got a response!!!
“Thank you so much for getting in touch and sharing your article with me.
I have passed your email onto the Dove team as I think this is an article they would love to read. It is such a real and compelling message and Dove as a brand are trying to help shift the way in which women think of themselves and those around them so I really appreciate you bringing your article to our attention.”
Laura Carswell – Senior Account Executive
Sooo what’s Next?
Seeming I received such fantastic support from y’all, I have decided to take things one step further in my own attempt to love my own body more – and to teach others that you can do it too. I’m going to model some swimsuits…Eeep!
Through the Curves article, I was put in contact with a fantastic swimwear line called Swimsuits For All. They offer plus size swimwear and say quite openly – “Think you have to be a certain size or shape before you’re allowed to enjoy the sun in something other than a baggy T-shirt? Puh-leze.”
They’re all about making all women feel beautiful in their swimsuits, and their #CurvesInBikinis campaign has been hugely successful.
This swimwear store is for women out there who perhaps:
- Have curves
- Big boobs (I don’t really have big boobs, but I did notice that many were fab for those with bigger boobies)
- Can never find swimwear that fits both top and bottom at the same time
- Can never find fashionable AND affordable swimwear (man! swimwear is expensive these days)
Swimsuits For All could perhaps be the answer to all of your summer prayers in 2015. I have to admit, I had a blast browsing through their online category of swimsuits.
What I like about Swimsuits For All:
- Wide range of styles including bikinis, tankini’s and one pieces
- Modern, fashionable, flattering designs
- Mix and Match with ease. Need and bigger size in your bottoms, because of the size of your bottom? Easy! You can buy different size tops and bottoms
- Those out there with big boobies. Choose a size that really fits and also many of the swimsuits include full support
- Sizes range from a US 10 – 23 so there really is a swimsuit for all
- Most designs are incredibly affordable
- The review system helps you choose the right swimsuit based on other’s experiences i.e does it tend to fit a big bigger than actual size, is it as flattering in real life as it is on the model etc
- International shipping – great for the travelling gals of the world
- The customer service team is amazing – seriously!
Downside of Swimsuits for all
- It’s an online store only, so you need to really know your exact measurements to ensure you get the correct size. There are video tutorials on the website to help with this. Plus as I said earlier, the customer service team is amaze-balls and will help you out with any questions you have.
- You don’t get the benefit of trying on the swimsuit to see if it suits you first – you’ve just gotta go with it (Though there is a returns policy if you are not happy – full credit, except shipping – please read T&Cs before purchasing)
- Too many pretty designs to choose from. Ok this isn’t a downside, but it is really hard to choose just one. I got 3….just saying!
So without further adieu – me in my new swimmers for 2015
I’m not a model, I’m a real women. These pictures are to help inspire other curvy ladies not to listen to trolls. As such, any troll comments left on this article will be deleted without hesitation. If you don’t want to see my swimwear shots, close the page now.
I had also written this whole bit about being a full time traveller with zero hair products and barely any make up, but I deleted it all to say instead Here I Am – Love Me Bitches!!!
Swim Sexy Polka Dot Bandeau/Halter High Waist Bikini with Swim Sexy Black High Waist Brief: Sadly they had run out of my size for the polka dot bottom, but as soon as they notified me I asked for plain black high waist bottom – and they happily sent that instead. I love how this goes together to create a classic pinup look. I’m wearing a size 10 US top and a size 12 US bottom – both fit like a dream.
What I’m wearing:
Swim Sexy Yacht Cruise Underwire Bikini & Swim Sexy Black High Waist Brief: I’m going to admit I did receive the bottoms for this bikini, but I just didn’t love them as I’d hoped. The bottoms sit lower, just around the belly button, and maybe I was being a little sensitive about my midsection this day, but I decided to again go with the high waisted bottoms instead.
I love this top as it’s fully supported and can be worn as a strapless as well. The gold detail (which sadly you cannot see) makes this top divine, I also love the black and white pattern.
I’m wearing a size 12 US top and size 12 US bottom. This made the cup size a little too big for me personally, but it meant a much more comfy fit around my back. And I certainly wasn’t gaping – it fit fine.
What I’m wearing:
Tropiculture Luxe Blouson One Piece Swimsuit: I love, love, LOVE this swimsuit! It is a one piece and it just fits like a dream. The fact that the top part is loose means no fear of my belly being on show, and the patterned top with the gold band around the middle makes me feel like some sort of James Bond beauty – Love IT!
I’m wearing a size 12 US
I recently went on a press trip where we visited a spa, and I wore the one piece for the very first time. Not only did I feel confident walking around in my new gorgeous cossie but I had other bloggers asking me where I got my swimsuit from. One even emailed me this the other day:
“Hey Meg! I checked out Swimtsuits For All… love it. thanks for the recommendation. I am going to buy couple pieces definitely.”
Why I wrote this article…
I hope my posting this on the internet for you all to see might encourage a few of you to get out there, take off those baggy shirts and board shorts, and love your body a little more. I did this photo shoot in a very public place, at the 1918 art-nouveau Gellert Baths in Budapest and at first I was a little terrified, but then some little old ladies started watching, looking at the pics Tom was taking, and giving me thumbs up with huge smiles on their faces. It made me feel like a million bucks – and seeing these pics now, I look it too.
I’m no model – I’m just a normal gal. But I don’t have to be a model to love the way I look in these swimsuits. And I believe that you can find the perfect swimsuit too.
So get out there ladies – enjoy the warm sunshine while it’s here. And look fabulous while you do it!
Love this article? Why not pin it on your favourite Pinterest board?
Note: I am in no way affiliated with the #CurvesInBikinis Challenge, I just thought you might like to hear about it.This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, i’ll receive a small commision payout. Probably enough for a beer or two at the pub. All opinions remain our own. I did receive my swimsuits complimentary thanks to Swimsuits For All.[manual_related_posts]