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The 13 best swimsuits for women over 50, according to style experts

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Shopping for swimwear can be stressful at any age, but finding a stylish and flattering suit presents a particular set of challenges for women over 50. You want to look great but still have support and coverage. After years of reaching for basic black one-pieces or skirted options, it seems that the masses — including celebs — are wearing whatever makes them feel good, and we’re here for it. Case in point: Jennifer Lopez, who at 53 is still posting sexy selfies in sultry cut-out swimwear, and Martha Stewart, who recently became the oldest Sports Illustrated cover model at 81. If you’re a woman over 50 and need some swimsuit guidance, you’re in the right place. We tapped three fashion experts to get the scoop on the most figure-flattering and fashion-forward options around. Keep reading to find a suit that’ll make you feel like a million bucks.

What swimsuit styles are most popular for women over 50?

While over-50 style blogger Dana Marie believes the best swimsuits are “whatever you feel most comfortable in,” she also recommends reaching for “one-pieces and high-cut bikinis that provide support and have ruching details.” A higher cut elongates the legs and ruching is like magic, camouflaging tummy troubles and more. Style expert Joseph Katz, however, isn’t jumping on the two-piece train, telling Yahoo Life: “The most popular swimsuits when we get to 50 and above tend to be one-pieces — they’re a little more forgiving as they cover the areas most women want [to hide].”

But that doesn’t mean your maillot has to be basic! “The one-piece swimsuit has evolved, and it is not the dated look and feel we saw years back. Today the one-piece swimsuit is built to look sexy, show off curves or add definition in places women need them and cover the areas women don’t want to show,” he added.

Which materials or design details are key?

The secret to finding the most flattering style? “Focus on support and shaping,” said fashion expert and Afterpay brand ambassador Zanna Roberts Rassi, who added: “Look for a fabric that has a good stretch, but is also sturdy enough to sculpt. You want to ensure that over time, the swimsuit will retain its shape — no saggy bottoms wanted.” Rassi believes the best fabric for swimwear is a nylon blend: “It’s super elastic and durable and much softer than polyester.”

Another detail she always looks at is the leg opening of the swimsuit bottoms. “Sometimes, the seams can be stiff and cut into your legs, creating unflattering lines. You want to make sure the suit has a good amount of stretch around the seams.”

Both Rassi and Katz recommend a suit with built-in underwire. “A one- or two-piece style with an underwire top — think a balconette shape — gives the suit a great visual detail while providing support,” said Rassi. Added Joseph, “Underwire is great because you don’t have to worry about support issues and it gives a clean, built-in-sexy look.”

Other details to keep an eye out for are built-in mesh for smoothing purposes, sun-protective fabric and, of course, ruching. According to Katz, “ruching is a fabric-gathering detail that is terrific because it smooths edges and enhances natural curves.”

What are the best silhouettes?

“One-piece swimsuits, long-sleeve and retro styles (specifically high-waist bottoms) are among the most popular,” Rassi said. “According to Afterpay data, sales for retro styles are up 211% YOY with long-sleeve styles following suit, up 159% YOY.”

Katz is partial to one-shoulder suits, as they “show a bit more but also give great coverage.” He added that “it’s not a typical look in swimwear, so you will stand out a bit, in a good way.” Look for options that represent your personal style — and have fun! Experiment with cut-out details, splashy prints, sheer panels, color blocking and sparkles.

OK, ladies: Now that you know what to look for, keep reading to see the 13 styles our experts say are the best swimsuits for women over 50.

Cupshe

This popular number is expert and shopper-approved.

$31 at Amazon

Over 50 blogger Marie listed Cupshe as one of her favorite swimsuit brands, thanks to its stylish designs and supportive details. This top-selling option has ruching around the midsection to smooth out any lumps and bumps and removable padded cups for extra shaping. Also, it’s fully adjustable at the back, to help you easily find your perfect fit. One five-star reviewer raved, “After three children and some weight gain I am self-conscious in a swimsuit, so my friend recommended this one. I have to say that it gives me a confidence boost. It runs true to size and provides a flattering fit on both mine and my friend’s body frames (that are very different).”

Summersalt

This popular Summersalt one-piece made Katz’s list of faves because of its “sexy cut-out on the back and built-in slimming detail.” The suit uses diagonal seaming, and the brand’s signature compression fabric keeps everything in place. It is size-inclusive, ranging from 0 to 24, is super supportive at the bust without using any added cups or padding and has full coverage at the rear. Thousands of shoppers are fans and love how flattering it is and the fact that they never have to adjust themselves when wearing it.

J.Crew

Katz loves this stylish one-piece “for the ruching detail, its slimming effects and very sexy plunging V-neck.” The suit ranges in size from 0 to 24 and even comes in a long-torso version. Along with being machine-washable, this full-coverage suit also has built-in UPF 50 sun protection. Even better, it is made of 60% recycled materials — so you can feel good about your purchase.

FWRD

You can never go wrong with a classic black one-piece.

$215 at FWRD

Rassi is a fan of this minimal maillot as it’s stretchy yet sculpting. Like all of Hunza G’s suits, the swimsuit is one-size-fits-all thanks to the brand’s signature “figure-flattering fabric that flexes to sculpt and support all shapes.” The scoop-neck silhouette offers just a hint of skin at the front but the plunging back makes the suit a sexy, unexpected option. Just keep in mind: This textured knit suit needs to be hand-washed.

Old Navy

That’s right — 13 bucks! Who says cute swimsuits need to cost an arm and a leg?

$13 at Old Navy

Another one of Rassi’s picks is this high-waisted bikini from Old Navy. While each piece is sold separately, you can buy the entire thing for next to nothing. The high-waisted bottom boasts an elasticized high-rise waistband and leg openings that won’t dig into your legs, while the bandeau top offers extra coverage in the bust. The bikini’s stretchy material is not only soft and comfortable against your skin but it’s also quick-drying and UV-protective.

Bloomingdales

Not only does this Onia swimsuit have underwire for extra bust support, it also features adjustable straps, providing ample converge in the rear. The textured fabric adds dimension, while the contrasting white stitching gives the simple suit a high-fashion feel. Plus, as Rassi told us, “If you’re looking for an instant slimming and streamlined effect, always go for black!”

Miraclesuit

Mirclesuit has been treating us to figure-flattering swimwear for decades, so it makes sense that this cute option is at the top of Katz’s list. “The Miraclesuit is a supercharged one-piece with a sexy sheer detail and fabric that shapes you to perfection,” he said. Sultry mesh cutouts are flanked by classical draping and shirring to hide any imperfections. Its deep-scoop back shows off some skin, while the thick straps help keep everything in place as you move around.

CUPSHE

“Built-in bra cups and the tie detail create a great slimming illusion, and the price is right,” said Katz about this top-rated Cupshe option. The bow knot at the waist helps create an hourglass shape, while the color-blocked design gives it a fun twist. “Honestly, the most comfortable swimsuit I’ve ever worn!” raved one shopper. “Flattering on, and I love the color. I’m 5’5”, 145 pounds and I got the large. I have a longer torso, and this suit fits perfect. I’ll definitely be ordering more! Also, I’m in my 60s, so this suit is appropriate for everyone.”

Maaji

We can’t get over how cute this reversible suit is!

$117 at Maaji

“This is another great one-piece with a zipper front detail,” said Katz. “ It follows the athleisure/aquatic sports vibe and it’s reversible so you get two suits in one! It is also on trend with the sparkly detail in the fabric.” Despite the high-neck silhouette, the front zipper allows you to decide just how much skin you want to show. The back features adjustable criss-cross straps so you’re sure to find a comfortable fit.

Skims

Size-inclusive and available in tons of colors, this Skims suit is an all-around winner.

$88 at Skims

Blogger Dana shared her love for Skims swimsuits because of their sculpting ability and classic designs. This one’s available in XXS to 4XL and comes in a ton of colors. You can opt for classic black, gray or nude shades or go for a pop with a pretty pastel or bold neon. Looking for some additional coverage? Layer on this matching swim top and/or swim skirt.

Oops

This high-fashion swimsuit will make you feel like you’re in a tropical paradise.

$175 at Oopscool

Katz loves this one-piece from new swimwear brand Oopscool because of its punchy print. “You’re sure to make a fashion statement at your next pool party,” he said. The square-neck design is so chic, you can easily take the suit from the beach to the bar with the right accessories. Katz suggests getting the matching wrap for a streamlined look that provides extra coverage.

Summersalt

Stand out on a crowded beach in this colorful suit. Grab it for less than half price with promo code SALE25.

$47 at Summersalt

Dana is also a major fan of Summersalt swimwear. This fun color-blocked option has smoothing diagonal seaming, built-in cups and adjustable straps for a figure-flattering look. It has full coverage at the rear and a shelf bra with built-in soft cups that give your bust area a nice smooth shape. “I am a 63-year-old slim, small woman with a thick waist. This suit makes me look like I have a figure! My husband loves it as much as I do,” raved one five-star reviewer.

Monday Swimwear

Martha Stewart made a splash wearing this plunging stunner on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

$192 at Monday Swimwear

Martha’s exact white-hot swimsuit is designed to be slimming and flattering, thanks to the thick panel around the waist, wide straps for supporting large busts and a deep V-neckline which helps elongate the body. The gorgeous suit is made with recycled nylon and spandex sourced from leftover nylon yarn and scraps and can be yours in sizes ranging from petite to 3XL (or VVV, as it’s listed on Monday Swimwear).

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.

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