Opt For Good Support
Our experts’ biggest piece of advice is that support is essential. Emily Dawes, stylist and former fashion editor at You, suggests trying everything from cups to underwiring to see what works for you, and adds that adjustable thicker straps will help with support too.
Be aware also that you may have to compromise on style in order to get the support you need – as curve model Poppy Towers explains: “I love a string triangle bikini but I wouldn’t wear one for any longer than a day as all the weight of my breasts are held by a string around my neck - which gets uncomfortable to say the least.”
Don’t Shy Away From Bikinis
One-pieces are an obvious choice for bigger busts, but according to Emily, bikinis can be surprisingly flattering too as you’re able to show off your waist and balance your proportions in a way that a swimsuit wouldn’t let you. So, what style is best? “Balconette designs which often have the option of being with or without straps work nicely, or bra-style tops with underwiring are always flattering and supportive,” Emily advises. Look out for brands which allow you to buy tops and bottoms in different sizes too - Beija or Figleaves are good options.
Be Careful With Bandeaus
Bandeaus are notorious for not remaining in the right position, and those with bigger busts may struggle to get the support they need with this style of swimwear.
“Unless there is some sort of strap it can be difficult to provide the control often needed with larger busts,” explains Heidi Gosman, swimwear guru and founder of Heidi Klein. However, you can sometimes make an exception when it comes to a one-piece as the design of a swimsuit creates a little bit more structure and comfort for those who don’t wish to wear a strap.
For Emily, strapless numbers aren’t always out of the question. “You can find bandeau styles with a wrap design or a balconette bra-style with removable straps to create a bandeau feel that is more flattering and feminine than a straight-across look,” she explains.
Try A Swimsuit With A Different Style
Swimsuits aren’t necessarily a quick fix for bigger busts – there are rules to remember when it comes to looking good. Emily’s tips include looking for the right shape. “Wrap swimsuits can be really flattering on bigger boobs as it enhances your silhouette,” she says. “Also try styles which have a band under the boobs to add more support.”
A bit of waist detail can flatter women with larger busts too. “A swimsuit that nips you in at the waist always looks beautiful and this season they are everywhere from Hunza G to Topshop,” stylist Megan Rowland tells us. “Look out for a buckle detail at the waist. If you're petite with a larger bust then Hunza G's legendary swimsuits are brilliant as they are one size, so contour to your body shape and bust size.” Stylist Kyran Low recommends looking for designs with built in extras too. “From removable cups and concealed underwiring to adjustable back straps, there are a variety of great options when it comes to swimsuits. My favourite shape is the plunge neckline with wide shoulder straps which will help really anchor you in.”
After something completely different? Sarah Shotton, creative director of Agent Provocateur, recommends a sporty look. “Swimsuits with zips are great so that you can make the most of your cleavage in a really flattering way. Asymmetric designs are also really stylish and swimsuits with panelling and bandage work for a sporty, yet sexy beach look.”
Don’t Dismiss Padding
Padding isn’t just about increasing your bust size, it also has shaping benefits. “Padding can often help to make someone feel more supported or create the shape you want, making your boobs perkier, and less saggy,” says Emily. “It’s important to get the balance right, however – “Too much padding, and you may have the odd nip slip,” Kyran warns.
Find Extra Back Support
“A back strap that has three clasps like a bra will be more supportive than one with only one hook and eye, for example,” advises Emily. “Adjustable straps will also help to create the perfect fit.” Kyran suggests looking out for wide tie-back straps that are easy to alter, whilst boning around the back straps is the key to feeling supported according to Heidi.
Go For Bigger Bottoms
When it comes to the bottom half, you need to balance out what’s going on on top. “In my opinion, those with a larger bust should also go for a wide hipster bottom to create more of a balanced appearance,” Heidi advises. “Skimpier bottoms can often leave you looking top heavy, especially if you have a high-support top on.”
Megan suggests that a high cut bottom can also offer a flattering fit, and Emily agrees. “Embrace higher leg briefs or tie-side styles which can often be really forgiving and adjusted to fit you perfectly,’ she says.
Know Where To Look
Shop like our experts and check out their top brands…
Emily’s favourites: Figleaves, Beija, John Lewis, Boux Avenue, Marks and Spencer, Curvy Kate, Simply Be and Arabella, a new high-end label.
Kyran’s favourites: Bare Necessities, Asos Design, Wolf and Whistle, Eloquii, Bravissimo, Fig Leaves, Athleta, Norma Kamali, Loft and Halfbaked London
Megan’s favourites: Asos Fuller Bust, Boux Avenue, New Look, Debenhams, John Lewis, Figleaves and Bravissimo
Poppy’s favourites: Wolf & Whistle, Figleaves, ASOS Fuller Bust, Pour Moi, Freya, Bravissimo and Simply Be.