This Is the Reality of Trying on Plus-Size Swimsuits


We're so busy writing about the summer fantasy oftentimes we forget about the far less exciting reality. For the majority of women, warmer weather brings on thigh chaffing, insecurity, and ill-fitted swimsuits, among other uncomfortable situations. The amount of time I've spent hunched over in a dimly-lit dressing room trying to contort my boobs to fit into a bathing suit that doesn't offer mix-and-match sizing is, well, a lot. Model Sonny Turner decided to do her part to stop the madness this week when she posted a photo on her Instagram page and aired her grievances with swimsuit designers. Can you tell I'm beaming with pride and respect?

This is "the reality of shopping as a thick/plus size woman," she begins. "Changing rooms can be scary places. I am wearing the largest size from one of the most popular high street stores.… High-street bikinis do not cater for women of my body type. The majority of online stores don't either."

She then lists off a laundry list of every thought a woman with curves has encountered while trying to buy a suit. "Big breasts need underwire for support for a youthful lift. We need cup sizes that correlate to bra sizes.… We need cups that actually cover more than our nipple. We need cups that bring our boobs together so there's not a massive gap in between them," Turner says.

It's not fair that we can't wear cute swimwear just because we are built differently.

She continues, "We need straps that aren't so tight it's as though our neck is about to snap off. We need bikini bottoms that don't give us wedgies when we walk. We need string bikinis that don't expose our vagina lips. We need swimsuits that fit over our hips without dragging the neck of the costume down causing neck ache." If I had any musical talent whatsoever, I'd turn her bullet points into a pop anthem. The fact of the matter is, women who wear clothing that qualifies as "plus size" (which is a word that isn't concrete in meaning either), are left with few options. Our society has decided without warrant that women of all shapes, curves, and edges shouldn't feel good about their form. We grow up learning to feel bad about our bodies for no other reason than it doesn't look like the altered versions of those featured on billboards. It's oppressive to solely have access to swimwear that fits those bodies-the same bodies that are essentially cooked up behind someone's computer. It has to stop.

Turner agrees, explaining, "We deserve more choice in the selection for our body type that isn't just the generic black swimsuit with a kimono. Yes, believe it or not, some of us actually want a thong bikini, the whole selection doesn't have to be high-waisted. We're going to need you to stop using models with fake boobs that aren't a real depiction of what the bra would look like on our real droopy ones. It's not fair that we can't wear cute swimwear just because we are built differently. We deserve to walk into a store and pay $10 for a nice bikini without breaking the bank and our body confidence." She finishes with: "#everyBODYisbeautiful bottom line is: MAKE CLOTHES FOR ALL SIZE & BODIES."

Hear, hear.

Next, find out why our editor says her thighs are the new thigh gap.