Buying The Perfect Swimsuit For Petite Women

The best swimsuit for the petite figure is one that flatters other figure flaws while giving the illusion of elongation.

Petite ladies have it rough.Forced to ask strangers for help reaching high items at the grocery store, forced to endure increasingly un-funny comments about one's height, and forced by the limited availability of petite-sized clothing into an equally limited wardrobe.For the super-petite, those who will wait their entire lives to pass the five-foot mark, even the petite clothing available often needs to be hemmed.Adding insult to injury, in fashion magazines a petite height is classified as a figure flaw alongside such problems as having large hips, a small bust, or no waist.Fashion writers gamely attempt to give the vertically challenged tips to make themselves look taller, but woe be to the woman of less than average height who possesses another figure flaw.To make herself look taller, she might be advised to dress in long, clean lines, avoiding any clutter in her outfit, but if she also wants to camouflage a small bust, she might be advised, on the contrary, to wear an outfit with ruffles and bows- in short, as much clutter as possible- on her top half.

When it's time to buy a swimsuit, every woman cringes inside, but the vertically challenged face extra headaches.Petite bathing suits are not easy to find in the stores, and petite women may find that regular-sized one-piece suits tend to bunch around their middles (not an attractive look).There are two solutions to the availability problem: order a swimsuit from a catalogue or website that sells petite swimsuits (being, of course, prepared to send it back if it doesn't look the same on you as it did on the model), or buy a two-piece, the fit of which will have little to do with your height.By shopping early in the season, as soon as the bathing suits hit the stores, you may also be able to get your hands on some of those hard-to-find petites.

Once you've thought about where to get your swimsuit, you'll have to think about what to buy.First, accept that your bathing suit is not really going to make you look taller.Wearing horizontal stripes will make you look shorter, but anyone who would consider wearing a bathing suit with horizontal stripes needs more therapy than this article can provide.Vertical stripes (or seams) might, by contrast, help elongate you a little, with the added bonus that they are slimming.Petite ladies are no different from the rest of the population in that most of us are more worried about looking too plump in a bathing suit than looking too skinny.Since a bathing suit is not going to make you look five inches taller, the best advice for the under-tall is to focus on the one or two figure flaws that really drive you crazy, while keeping an eye out for possible solutions that at least won't make you look shorter, and might even help.


Fortunately for those who are under-tall but have never been under-weight, the solutions offered in bathing suits for figure flaws often have the added bonus of elongation.For instance, if you feel like you have heavy thighs, the best solution is a high-cut bottom, which makes your legs appear longer and therefore slimmer.An illusion of longer legs means an illusion of more height.If you lack a waist, a suit with princess seams will not only help give you the illusion of one, it will elongate your torso: again, an illusion of height.If you like to wear a sarong or pareo out of the water to hide your hips, choose one that's short rather than long- as with skirts, showing more leg gives a taller appearance.

Women who are petite all over- i.e., small busted- have more options in bathing suits because they do not need to worry about support.Some of these options, though- like halters and string tops- won't provide any lift.If you go with a string top, choose one that has soft cups instead of just a lining; the cups will provide a little shaping and lift, while the tops that are just lined allow the bust to flatten out, nearly disappearing altogether.String bottoms, however, are only for those who are supremely confident about the width of their hips; they make wide hips appear wider.

Trending Now

© Demand Media 2011