There is no excuse for anyone to ban themselves from the beach because there are a variety of costumes for most body types.

Durban - Summer is on, and there’s still time to freshen up your beach wardrobe. Gone are the days when it was perfectly acceptable to go swimming in an oversized T-shirt and a pair of shorts. Those items need to be discarded.

There is no excuse for anyone to ban themselves from the beach because there are a variety of costumes for most body types.

For those afraid to show a bit of flesh, the traditional one-piece has finally made a spectacular comeback.

In the past, most one-piece costumes came in plain black or navy blue, the types worn at school swimming galas.

Now they have evolved into bright colours and patterns. The good news for those with fuller bosoms is that many of them come with built-in bras.

Even better news comes in the form of the “magic” bathing costume. Mesh inside this one-piece costume acts as a built-in girdle.

You may not be able to breathe, or have much circulation in your mid section, but for those who care about these kinds of things, the difference to the appearance of your tummy should be immediate.

The standard bikini hasn’t changed much over the years. Except some of them now come with the bonus of extra padding. Think bikini and push-up bra rolled into one. Very flattering, indeed.

If you hate the tan lines caused by the strings, the boob-tube bikini top is for you. No strings attached.

For those not brave enough to wear the classic bikini, but who refuse to wear a one-piece, there is the tankini.

The extended top – which covers some of the tummy and ends at the belly button – is the choice of many who don’t want to show off too much flesh.

Bathers need to think carefully about the bottoms they choose to accompany the tops.

Experts say people with a bit more flesh on their thighs should stick to the high-cut bikini bottom. The boy-leg cut is more suited to the thinner-legged among us.

Many costumes come with blinged-up trims.


In an attempt at modesty, many women wear sarongs over their bathing costumes. These days, the tie-dyed sarongs are best left to students who need low-budget curtains or tablecloths.

If you want to cover up in style, there are many options, including the lightweight kaftan. Many of them are made of chiffon and dry easily – not to mention that they have drawstrings in the right places, and flatter most body types.

Slip a pair of shorts or jeans underneath them and you’re ready to hit a nearby café for a drink with friends. Shoppers should also look out for mini dresses in bold summery colours.

Classic board shorts are still a good idea. They are super short and in most stores, match bathing costumes and flip flops.

Even flip flops have been spiced up with cute bows and other trims. But there’s no need to break the bank to cover up.

Oversized scarves tied at the hip, or around the torso as a top, will do the trick. Pair this with an old pair of denims made into shorts, and you’re ready for the beach. - Daily News