Shopping for Swimwear, The Science Behind Bikinis, and More

Shopping for modest clothes—let alone modest swimwear—can be painful. Try shopping for swimwear with your daughters or granddaughters, and you’re already digging through your purse for the Ibuprofen.

We’d like to prevent your headache with some super practical swimwear shopping tips. By the way, if you missed yesterday’s discussion on why we even bother to cover up, join it here.

The Science Behind Bikinis (Video by Jason Evert)
If you’re considering a bikini (or that young girl is begging for one), check out this short video. Among other reasons not to wear a bikini, if you want a man to see you for what you’re truly worth, a recent Princeton study explains why you’ll want to wear more than a bikini this summer. 

How to Shop for Swimwear with Your Daughters (Tips from Dannah Gresh) 
Summer is quickly approaching and that means the dreaded swimsuit shopping adventure. If you're going to the beach this summer, keep these tips in mind: 

  • Swimwear is for swimming. A girl who values modesty covers up when she gets out of the water. "Laying out" may be okay with girlfriends, but not when there are guys around. Whether it's a pair of board shorts and T-shirt or a fun frilly cover-up, your girls have lots of adorable options!  
  • Focus on what they can purchase. Do a bit of online perusing and show your girls some suits you think are modest. I’m partial to tankinis, especially ones with shorts as they're usually less form-fitting than a one-piece. I've had success at places like Kohl's and some sporting goods stores since athletic suits tend to cover more territory. Set the standard by showing them that modest swimwear can be cute. When you are teaching your girls about modesty, it's crucial to show them what you can say "yes" to, or all they hear is "no" and that can crush their spirits.  
  • Discuss your expectations before you hit the mall. What mom says goes. As a general rule, I see no reason for sheer fabric, bikinis, plunging necklines, or high-cut hips. (Sharing an embarrassing moment to prove your point always adds some credibility!)  
  • And of course, don't forget to finish off the trip by picking up some super-cool nail polish and stopping in for some refreshing summer smoothies. 

Finding “Modest” Bathing Suits (Leads from Carla Anne Coroy)
While I haven’t checked out these sites in-depth, it seems like Carla Anne has compiled quite a list of websites that offer bathing suits that cover more skin than usual. Click on this link and scroll down to view these sites.

Thoughts on Swimsuits (by Nancy Leigh DeMoss)
Like every other type of clothing, swimsuits need to be evaluated according to a standard of modesty. Ask yourself, does this article of clothing fulfill the purpose for clothing, which is to cover nakedness? Does it expose or emphasize private parts of my body?

Here’s something to think about. Did you know that until the mid-1800s men and women swam in different places or at different hours? Yet, today, men and women swim together in swimwear that is often provocative and designed to expose human anatomy.

Your Turn
Whether you wear a swimming suit this summer or choose another route, how can you “swim upstream” in this area? Let us know what you’ll be wearing swimming this summer and we’ll choose ten of you on Friday, June 15 to receive a copy of The Look: Does God Really Care What I Wear?

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About the Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula Marsteller

Paula has served with Revive Our Hearts for thirteen years. She is the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom. There's nothing she loves to share more than the gospel-centered truths that have so transformed her own life: what it means on a daily basis to be "dead to sin, alive to God, and in Christ Jesus." Paula, Trevor, and their son, Iren, make their home in New York.