Curvy Woman Shares What It’s Really Like to Shop for Bikinis at Her Size

Hayley FitzPatrick
Aliss Bonython often posts about her struggle to accept her body on her Instagram channel. (Photo: Instagram)
Aliss Bonython often posts about her struggle to accept her body on her Instagram channel. (Photo: Instagram)

With swimsuit season shortly approaching, Aliss Bonython is already feeling the pain of shopping as a plus size woman. The popular vlogger, who uses her platform to promote body positivity and embracing all shapes and sizes, recently posted a mirror selfie to Instagram to show the challenges curvy women face when trying to find well-fitting bikinis.

Posing in an ill-fitting swimsuit, the 21-year-old literature student at University of Nottingham in England detailed the struggles in the caption of her post that she’s encountered in the past finding styles.

“I used to get so disheartened when I would go shopping for swimwear with my friends who had no issue finding them,” she captioned the image. “I’ve always had too much b00bs/[butt]/hips to wear straight sized bikinis and instead of punishing myself and my body for not fitting into this narrow ideal of sexy, I just look elsewhere.”

Finding brands that catered to her size helped her to embrace bikini shopping and her own body.

“I remember getting a bikini from @gabifresh @swimsuitsforall collection and not feeling like I had to change myself to look ok, because it came fitting every curve on my body. Massive thank you to all the brands who don’t forget about us curvy girls,” she added in the caption.

The vlogger was attracted to Swimsuits for All because of its large selection and variety. “Not only do they have a range of sizes, they do two versions of every size — one for smaller cups and one for larger — which is amazing for most women and helps a disheartened young woman like me, who feels like she could never find a bikini that I’m not popping out of,” she tells Yahoo Style.

Many of her followers related to her struggle and took to the comments to share their own experiences swimsuit shopping.

“When bikini tops are only big enough to cover your n1pples and then dig into your shoulders trying to support your chest…I’ve been there girl,” one user, Kayci, commented. “I’m 37 and curvy. I just found out like a year ago that you can buy tops for your band and cup size with an underwire. Just like bra shopping. Finally figured it out! Ha ha Makes all the difference in confidence,” another user, Sally Jane, shared. Another suggested more options need to be created for bustier women. “I go through the same thing when bikini shopping, big b00bs need cute tops too,” user Haley Evans added.

Bonython believes that not enough swimwear size variety is available for plus-size women.

“The hardest part of bikini shopping for me is the fact that the size I need in clothing is around a US 12, but they’re never spacious enough for for me,” she says. “Finding swimwear is a struggle for me no matter where I shop because it’s quite a rare cup size.”

She also feels that brands are missing out on a big opportunity by not catering to the lucrative market.

“I think a lot of brands feel like there’s no market there, but they’re so wrong,” she says. “So many of my followers are always asking where I get bikinis/lingerie because they can never find any!”

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