– a lookbook –
It’s raining outside today, but don’t you worry, swimsuit season is definitely here. It’s only been a few years that I have been wearing swimsuits at all, really – at least publicly.
Being raised in an ultra-orthodox home I very rarely have the chance to wear swimsuits at all, only to the occasional all-girls swim.
When I first wanted to buy a bikini, I had no idea how it was going to fit on my body. From that, this swim look book was born.
I’m a strong believer in pushing yourself to not just accept, but fall in love with your body. Not every swimsuit that I wore for this look book is something that I love seeing myself in, but that’s ok!
This is the body I will spend the rest of my life in. I plan to continue to push myself, wear whatever I want, and hopefully encourage you to do the same.
Please SUBSCRIBE to Mechanic Shop Femme for more like this!
Some links in this article are affiliate links, most swimsuits have been gifted, all opinions are my own.
Resale Plus Size Swimwear
Fat Fancy is a plus-size resale store in Portland, OR and one of my favorite places to shop for unique, budget clothing. Here’s the beauty of this place: not only can you shop in the store, but you can actually shop on their Instagram and Facebook during live sales.
Bee, the glorious owner, has recently debuted one-on-one styling sessions that you can access via Skype. This suit is an example of their mastery in finding perfectly fitting garments. I requested a bikini, provided my size, and they sent this one over.
It’s perfect, right?
Sizes – Up to a 32+
Unisex Plus Size Swimsuit
Looking for plus-size swimsuits that have sleeves and cover your thighs? TomboyX has suits up to a size 4x in a more unisex style like this one. TomboyX is a queer company that makes undergarments and swimwear that is eco-friendly and they pay their employees a living wage.
While I prefer less clothing in the summer, my partner prefers to cover up and this is the perfect suit for that. Comfortable, stretchy and with bold colors and designs, you can’t go wrong with this suit.
Sizes – Up to 4X
All the Lemons – Plus Size Swimsuit One-Piece
I’ve shopped at Ashley Stewart for years now and never knew that they sold swimsuits. Turns out they have a nice selection online! While I’m not normally a one-piece gal, I really wanted to showcase offerings for all kinds of people with a variety of coverage options.
My favorite this about this Yellow mesh cover up is how incredibly cool and lightweight it feels. I’d even wear it as a unique piece of lingerie! The cutouts on this Lemon one-piece swimsuit are so fun! I love how they show enough to feel fun while still being on the more modest side.
Plus-size swimwear for the win, here! Keep in mind that this swimsuit does run small.
Sizes: up to 4x
Plus Size Luxury Swimsuit
For this look book I tried swimsuits from Curvykini for the first time. This black woman-owned brand makes swimwear with luxury and quality as its main priority.
While many swimsuits wear out after only one or two seasons, expect your Curvykini suit to last for years!
This pink and orange bikini runs a tad small, but comes with removable straps so you can choose whether you want a strapless piece or not. I love that this bikini has a floating wire and while it looks like it can’t fit large breasts, my DDDs fits comfortably.
Sizes: Up to a 3x
Budget Plus Size Swimsuit
Another Fat Fancy perfectly fitting swimsuit! Seriously, you can not go wrong with this queer-owned, plus-size clothing resale store.
I absolutely must tell you about their live sales on social media. They call them “a wacky QVC” and it’s so right. It’s hilarious to participate even if you aren’t on the market for clothing. Bee, Frankie, and occasionally other special guests style the perfect outfits, share laughs and stories, and just make the online shopping experience so personal.
Shop in a sustainable way by buying gently used clothing instead of more fast fashion and save money while you do it. If you have the chance to stop by the store in Portland, give yourself a few hours. There is so much to look at!
Sizes: 6x +
Plus Size Swimsuit sold in Store
Who would have thought that some of my favorite swimsuits are available at Walmart? Walmart swim suits are an inexpensive option that available last minute in store!
Morgan and I were on a road trip when we ended up in a hotel with a pool. Somehow I didn’t manage to bring anything to swim in. 3 minutes later Walmart saved the day and I ended up with this cute suit.
There is a nice selection online but you’ll find that every store carries its own unique items that you may not be able to find online. Swing by and try a few on; you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Sizes: up to 5x
Eco-friendly Plus-Size Swimsuit
There is something about seeing Morgan in this glorious unisex swimsuit that makes me so happy. It fits them like a dream and it’s perfect for those of us that don’t like sleeves. The bottom hits right above the knee with a grippy band to make sure the suit stays in place.
Even better, Beefcake Swimwear is queer woman-owned company with suits inspired by 1920s styles. I love how transparent they are about the cost of making these swimsuits, paying their factory workers a living wage while producing a garment that is eco-friendly.
Sizes: up to 5x
Sexy Metallic Plus Size Bikini
Nothing says, “I’m here!” more than this Silver metallic bikini from Ashley Stewart. I felt so sexy flaunting myself around in it. The top does run a little small, so I would size up.
With its crisscrossing in the front, it gives a good amount of support to larger-breasted folks like me, and the bottoms comfortably hit right below my belly button. This would be the perfect party swimsuit!
Sizes: Up to 5x
Pool Party Perfect One-piece Plus-Size Swimsuit
Here’s a Curvykini one-piece that I know all of you will fall in love with! It’s a regal halter top with mesh inserts to keep it unique and interesting. This suit is perfect for a pool party where you don’t want to show it all, but still stand out in the crowd.
There’s also a pink version you absolutely must check out. Creative Director Khaaliqa Squire Levy says that her goal is to create daring pieces that at one time were only found in smaller sizes. I’ve talked to her about expanding the size range as well and it’s something they are currently working on. If you are of a larger size and want one of their swimsuits definitely reach out to Khaliqa!
Sizes: up to 3x
Plus Size Bikini with Bottoms that Don’t Roll Down
The first place I ever bought a bikini from was Swimsuits For All. While they are only available online, I love that they have the option of different size pieces for the top and bottom of your swimsuits. Surprisingly, their bottoms are some of the most comfortable I’ve ever worn because they don’t seem to roll down at all.
Swimsuits For All carries everything from triangle string bikinis to swim dresses, for styles that will suit just about anyone’s taste. I have two awesome swimsuits sitting in my cart right now that I just have to have!
Sizes: up to 30+
Looking for other swim options? Here are some other brands to check out that I didn’t have a chance to shoot for this lookbook:
CoEdition Use the code CHAYA20 for 20% of your purchase to be donated to the Third Wave Fund through the end of June.
I hope that what you take away from this is that anyone, and I mean anyone, with any size body, deserves to wear a swimsuit that they love and are comfortable in.
I ask that you push your boundaries a little and explore pieces you wouldn’t normally wear. Give yourself a chance to fall in love with your swimsuit body, just the way it is!
Your body is a swimsuit-ready body.
Are you a brand that wants to reach the plus size or queer communities? Please reach out and let’s see if we can collaborate. Email [email protected]