How to Choose the Perfect Surf Bikini
You’ve seen them: the surf-side nip-slips and bare-booties. Paparazzis make a living photographing celebrity wardrobe malfunctions at the beach
If you follow this simple surf bikini guide, no matter how pro you get at surfing, or how famous you might be, no one will ever catch you baring more than you intended.
If this is all you plan on doing on your vacation this year…
.. then you don’t need this guide. You’ll be fine with the latest and greatest in bikini fashion, feel free to look as cute as you’d like, you don’t need me.
If, however, you plan on moving up the ranks in the line-up and showing the boys what we’re made of, like this…
… I’m going to help you do it better than the celebrities.
… let us show you how it’s done.
I’ll also show you how to avoid back pain, a slipped disk, or dislocated vertebrae, just by switching your surf suit.
So listen up girls, because I’m about to give you the scoop on how to keep your lady lumps where they belong without a headache, and tell you where to get your suit too!
Before I get into the fun stuff, I feel I have to address a very important debate about how much a woman should reveal of her body. At a time, especially, where garments that purposefully cover the female form are under attack in many parts of the world, and where a bikini is referred to as the millennial equivalent of the power suit it’s difficult to understand why anyone would think there’s anything wrong with wearing a tiny little bikini. As Kathryn Westcott of BBC puts it, it’s
The media tells us baring skin gives us power, and yet, it’s been recently proven that men see ladies in bikinis much more as objects than as humans.
This is for sure not a debate that will end anytime soon, and I’m not going to take a side. What I will say is that whether you believe a bikini is empowering or objectifying,
And to do so confidently. (And to do so without judging someone else’s choice to do something you wouldn’t)
So to answer the question of how much of your body you should reveal while hitting the waves I’ll say, as much as you choose to reveal, despite what the media seems to be telling you.
There are many options out there that allow you to look great and surf like a beast while staying modest, such as one piece suits…
…or board shorts…
… and even the recent resurgence of high waisted or boyshort styles.
HOWEVER, most of those won’t give you any trouble while surfing, and therefore we won’t be addressing them in this post.
Bottom line here today is that if you choose to wear a bikini while surfing, you’ll need to find a good one in order to avoid physical injury, or worst, a blow to your ego.
The Perfect Surf Bikini Guide
The first point I’m going to address is safety, because honestly, it’s more important to stay out of rehab than to stay in your top.
This might be news to you–it is to most girls whom I’ve told it to, but it’s true.
I did. But when you tie the whole weight of your chachas (and mine aren’t that big) to one single point somewhere between your C6 or C7, then paddle really hard, and turn your neck real fast to check in on what, or who, you’re dropping in on, you’re going to run into trouble sooner or later.
This is especially true if you have your bikini extra tight to make sure the ladies don’t find freedom between waves.
The answer is a cross back, like this:
A cross back is going to help you keep all that pressure evenly distributed over your back and will help your body move fluidly without causing any kinks or tears.
Think of it as the equivalent of your pre-surf yoga routine, but out on the water.
If you have a halter top you love you can keep it, but alter it a bit. The first thing you can do is to tie the knot between your clavicle and the bust part of your suit. This will make the halter more elastic and keep the pressure from being concentrated on your neck.
If you still find too much pressure on your neck you can alter your suit into a crossback, just check out this tutorial.
Now that we have the safety out of the way, let’s talk about practicality in staying put.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out a bandeau top, although amazing for the shoulder tan, is going to come off the second you get your abs on that board.
Save it for the poolside.
Also keep bra-like spaghetti straps for the shore. You’ll look great in it while reading a book, but the first wipe out will find your shoulder straps down on your biceps, at best.
Unless it’s your first day out on the water, you’ll also know to stay away from any underwires, or any other unnecessary trinkets on the front, such as knots, or other bells and whistles, and especially metal bits that corode. They’ll just dig into you and make paddling torturous.
Adjustable triangle tops are just going to move around and reveal more side-boob than you’d like, so if you want that triangle feel you should be looking at something like this (also crossback)
There are more and more options out there which are variables of the crossback design. Some are better at distributing the tension across your back without digging into you skin. Try out a few and see what works best for you. You’ll want to lift your arms above your head and look at your hands, then move your arms and neck around. Notice where you feel tightness and tension, that will only be worst in the water.
If you’re a one-piece kind of gal, make sure you take this into account as well. A full suit might not fall off as easily, but you’ll have the same issues with your halter top, underwire, and spaghetti straps.
Oh, and keep it simple, as 6 time world champion Steph Gilmore found out the hard way:
Next up, let’s talk about the bottom. ;)
This is cute, it looks like it would stay on, and as long as you’re splashing around close to shore, it probably will.
Truth be told though, it’s for the bunnies, not the surfers. The second you wipe out you’ll thank baby Jesus you have a leash to keep your panties from ending up with all the lost go-pros: at the bottom of the reef half a mile down current.
If you’re going to shred you need something that ties at the hips.
Something like this is really nice…
…because the tie is on just one side and inside the seam of the suit, which means it won’t be cutting your circulation off for a tight grip.
With a bottom like that you can drop in deep and the last thing you’ll have to worry about is whether or not you’ll have to keep a hand close to your bum if you bail.
The more of us get out there and surf, the higher the demand for solid suits. Now we’re getting way more options than ladies even just a few years back.
For example, these bottoms allow you to scrunch up and tie the cheeks to where you find is comfy:
These bottoms keep you from relying on a guy friend to keep your keys or wax:
Time for a real girl’s surf trip!!
Maybe you like to get a bit crazier with your bottoms, you’re the kind of gal who likes this style:
but you know you’ll find it at your ankles after the first duck-dive.
It’s ok! Now there are styles that tie at the sides for a nice taught fit!
These might not LOOK like they’ll stay, but they will, because you can adjust the fit.
If you’re the type to wear board shorts, make sure they also have some kind of tie system. There’s not much use covering up if they’ll be riding down.
The Perfect Surf Suit
Your perfect surf suit should look a little like this:
Bodacious but practical.
You should be able not only to surf in it, you’ll want to do everything in it. Your limbs should be free without compromising coverage.
If you follow this advice, you’ll have a suit that’s all you, looks great, won’t let the girls peek out, won’t make you climb your leash for your panties, and most importantly, won’t make you go to rehab for a dislocated cervical.
So I’ve taught you how to pick the suit, now you have to get out there and learn to surf!
(as a side note, make up is as unnecessary in the water as metal clasps… sooner or later, it deteriorates and you’re left with a mess.)
Embrace your natural beauty.
Get out there and surf like a pro.