The best bathing suits for women over 40 – swim suits that make you feel fabulous!

by Sylvia

The best bathing suits for women over 40 - swim suits that make you feel fabulous! |

Are you looking forward to wearing your bathing suit or bikini again, or are you dreading it?

Finding a great bathing suit is never easy so I’m here to help and have selected some of the best bathing suits for women over 40 this summer. You may go to the dead sea and float in the water (as I did above) or go for a wonderful beach holiday and you may as well look good!

If you’re thinking of getting a new one, now is the best time to buy as the selection is the biggest.

Many of the options shown below are comfortable and flattering for women over 40 so you can be sure you will step out on the beach or swimming pool in confidence AND style.

Brands to consider

Some great brands to consider for swimwear include:

What swimwear will you wear this summer?

Are you still wearing bikinis or do you prefer bathing suits?

My preference is still for a bikini as I find them more comfortable and, on my body, still more flattering.

However, when I go snorkeling or do some serious swimming I wear a rash guard, which is why I have included some in this list too.

I’m not interested in getting a tan and always protect my skin with high SPF sunscreen.

Here is why I feel you too should embrace your beautiful pale skin!

Whatever your preference, you’re sure to find something you like in my selection of bathing suits, bikinis and rash guards.

What I bought and my current favorites

Like many of you, I don’t enjoy buying swimwear, but I have recently splurged on some swimwear as I hadn’t bought any new pieces in years and I think what I bought now will last me for at least 5 years. I stumbled upon the brand Seafolly and fell in love.

These pieces are high quality, have a wonderful tactile feel and are comfortable. Check out their current collection at Nordstrom and at Amazon.

I bought this bikini top (below) with this brief.

The best bikinis for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

The Seafolly bikini top I bought

The best bathing suits for women over 40 - swim suits that make you feel fabulous! |

I got the kaftan in this design as well.

Below are other pieces I loved and considered

If you like your bathing suit to be slimming, you may like to choose an optional illusion swim suit like this one .

“Gorgeous suit. Very well made. Design great for those with a few extra pounds.” – erwu

“Such a flattering swimsuit! I am 5’8″ and 135lbs and it fits me great. After having four kids, I need a swimsuit to hide my pooch and something comfortable I can chase my kids around the pool in.” – Catron

slimming bathing suit |

Seafolly swimsuit, 7 reviews, 4.5 stars 

One of my favorite Seafolly bikinis

I love this colorblock detailing of this bikini top. You can also get the matching bottoms.

Seafolly bikin top |

Loop halter bikini top

Singlets and rash vests

As my body is long, a bathing suit usually doesn’t fit me so I prefer to wear separates.

If I’m snorkeling or I know there won’t be a lot of shade, then I’ll opt for a rash vest. But I also love a tankini.

You could opt for this tankini top from Seafolly.

Seafolly tankini top |

Seafolly tankini

Seafolly tunics

You can also get some great cover-ups from Seafolly.

This tunic would be a good option if you want to pop a cover-up on to offer coverage and a little sun protection.

Seafolly tunic

One piece bathing suits

I also really like the draped bathing suits from Miraclesuit, which I believe are perfect for women over 40.

Their bathing suits strengthen the tummy area and the drapes hide the bulges so you will look streamlined and beautiful. This new Marrakech style has a flattering illusion style designed to create a slimming effect.

Miralcesuit Marrakech Temptation One-Piece Swimsuit |

Miraclesuit Illusion swimsuit

I also like bathing suits and bikinis with a retro vibe. This style covers up more of the body but is sexy and stylish.

This polka dot print from Miraclesuit has a retro print is another new style from the brand. You could either wear with a plain pair of navy blue bottoms, or the matching bikini bottoms which are designed to tuck your tummy in.

polka dot swimsuits for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

polka dot tankini top

Swimwear for women |

Miraclesuit one piece swimsuit

Black swimsuit

Another brand that makes fun swimwear with especially great rash guards is Tommy Bahama.

You really can’t go wrong with a flattering black swimsuit, in the same way as a little black dress will never go out of style.

This Tommy Bahama option has flattering ruching if you are looking to hide a belly.

flattering black swimwear for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Black Swimsuit

“Great swimsuit, it’s flattering and extremely well made. True to size.” – Aquick

Land’s End also has a good selection of swimwear in many sizes.

Lots of ladies in the 40+Style community have recommended Land’s End for their flattering, good quality, styles, particularly for those struggling to find a flattering shape and the right support for larger busts.

There are some good, figure-flattering options, including this ombre swimsuit, which could be a good option if you are pear-shaped as the lighter color on top will draw attention away from your lower half.

Land’s End swimsuit

Rash vest picks

I am a big fan of rash guards. I love how they protect my skin and many are very sexy too.

best bathing suits - the best rash guards / vests |

I always wear them when I do some serious swimming or go on a snorkeling trip or white water rafting.

Mine is no longer available but this Axesea rash guard from Amazon comes in three different colors and has good reviews. The pattern is designed to represent waves.

“This swim top was better than expected and the price was right. It is very comfortable when I am in the pool for water aerobics.” – Louise

“I’m fair skinned and have burnt easily on the shoulders/back in the past when snorkeling or out for long periods (even when re-applying sunscreen). I wish I bought it sooner.” – Sam

rash vests to wear to the beach | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Amazon rash guard, 198 reviews, 4.5 stars

This one is gorgeous too and it is the #1 best selling rash guard in Amazon.

rashguards for women |

Sbart rashguard, 1300+ reviews, 4,2 stars


I still love bikinis and when I’m not snorkeling or spending a lot of time in the water, that is what I will wear.

I usually opt for ones that have good coverage of the breasts and which have a higher brief. I also like briefs that have small pipes, so I don’t have to constantly keep up my bikini line!

I like the extra coverage offered by this bikini set from Amazon. It is still on trend because of the higher neckline and retro-style bottoms, but isn’t as skimpy as many bikini bottoms in stores now.

“I LOVE this swimsuit. I ordered a large mainly for the bottoms. I love that the top has a ton of straps so I can make it fit how I want.” – eelliott

“I have a big butt but a slimmer waist and this was perfect it covered everything!” – verified Amazon customer

bikinis with full coverage | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Amazon bikini set, 164 reviews, 4.5 stars


A great hybrid between the one-piece swimsuit and the bikini, tankinis can be a fantastic option if you don’t feel tummy confident, but you want to wear a two-piece.

It also means you can mix and match, perhaps opting for a bikini top one day for sunbathing, and the tankini top when you want more coverage. Here are some of my favorites.

Polka dot is always a classic print which won’t go out of style, but this Amazon tankini set also comes in striped and floral options.

“The quality of the material is great. Its a thicker material so I am not concerned about anything showing thru, seems like it’s going to last much longer than other bathing suits.” – Tarista

Tankinis to wear for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Amazon tankini set, 33 reviews, 4.9 stars

Swimsuit cover up selections

Almost just as important as your swimwear, a nice cover-up is essential for any trip to the beach.

After all, you never know when you might want to pop into the beach bar for a cocktail!

You can read more in my article on the best tunics and cover-ups for the beach or have a look at the selection below.

I love the styling of the tunic below with the chunky turquoise jewelry.

“I was very impressed with the quality. I was expecting a thin piece of stiff cotton. Instead I received a soft partially crochet dress.” – Alicia

“This is super amazing and great quality! I’ve gotten so many compliments on it! Would definitely buy again! I wear as a swimsuit cover up and as a tunic with an off white cami underneath with blue jean shorts or skinny jeans.” – Stephanie

how to cover up at the beach | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Amazon cover-up, 622 reviews, 4.5 stars

Plus size swimwear

There’s some beautifully flattering plus size swimwear and plus size cover-ups in stores right now, which makes the most of curves while providing support where it’s needed.

Swimwear which has a retro vibe often works wonderfully for curvy women!

I think this Miraclesuit black swimsuit is incredibly glamorous, and the reviews on Nordstrom agree.

“Yes, it is definitely worth purchasing this beautiful bathing suit. It fits wonderfully and makes you feel beautiful. The suit holds you in at the right places and has a fashionable look.” – Flareskirt

“Comfy & fits amazing!!! Fabric is soft and clings in the right places!” – Eaves

Flattering swimwear for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Cross-over swimsuit

Bathing suits for your body type

As with everything, choosing a bathing suit that you love and which suits you is much more important than opting for the latest fad.

Those with small busts may find that bathing suits with ruffles on the bust and hips add shape, while those with larger busts will need much more support than that afforded by the likes of string bikinis!

ruffle bikinis for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Ruffle bikini

“I love love love this entire suit. This was my first Robin Piccone suit and I went and bought 2 more afterwards.” – thenavyniche

If you’re an hourglass, then you could play up those curves by opting for retro styles, while pear shapes can balance their bottom half by opting for a bikini or tankini with the bottoms in a darker color.

Meanwhile, inverted triangles could try halterneck styles which are flattering as they show the collarbone and neckline without adding weight up top.

Rectangles and athletic shapes can either add some curves with embellishments or patterns, or can choose to play up their slim figure by opting for stripes.halterneck swimsuits for women over 40 | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

halterneck swimsuit

“Great swimsuit for the price.” – Laura


Do you have a favorite women’s swimwear brand? What are you going to wear to the beach this Summer?

Like this article on the best bathing suits for women over 40? Save it on Pinterest!

How to dress for the beach | fashion over 40 | style | fashion |

Feature Image: @malanovalie

{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Nanne

I haven’t had a chance to wear my bikinis yet this season, and it’s too cold for swimming here so there won’t be any until I go to Greece in the end of August:) Even with my extra pounds I prefer wearing bikinis to swimsuits, altough I am considering buying a swimsuit to wear when I go snorkling. It would have to be a halterneck style with a low cut back though, because I tan easily no matter how much sunscreen I put on and I don’t want ugly tan lines:) I don’t have a particular brand that I prefer, but a couple of particular styles: Tops should be bandeau or halterneck, and bottoms should be semi high with a medium cut thigh, because that’s what looks best as I have big thighs. Boy shorts and low cut legs only makes them look bigger.


2 Sylvia

I would just wear a spf 50 shirt when you go snorkelling. You burn really quickly doing that and it’s much better to completely cover you up. Yes, you are right about boy shorts. I often see bigger women wearing those and it is not flattering at all…


3 Aleya Bamdad

Love the green one. Very 50s.


4 Sylvia

Yes, that’s my favorite bathing suit too.


5 Greetje

I don’t go to the beach much these days. I used to, but now I am too lazy for it.
Unlike you Sylvia, I like a tan. That is a hang up from my teens and early twenties.
My colleagues used to say to me at least three times a day: “I know you don’t tan easily but o dear how white your legs are…. it is unbelievable.” Which was understandable as I had never been in the sun until I was 22.
So I took to sun couches. I know…. very bad for you,. Skin cancer and old skin. The last I am experiences already, the first I hope to escape.
And I still do it. So much easier than going to the beach and sunbath.
I have two bikinis (quite recent ones) and I will keep it at that. Oh yes and I have one ancient black swimsuit which is still fine.


6 Sylvia

Have you tried the self tanning sprays? Perhaps better for your skin?


7 Greetje

It will be a lot better for my skin, but it takes me too much time. You have to let the spray dry you see. And the old tanning sprays used to slightly stain your clothes. Never dared to use it after that.


8 Kristin

I heart that green number! I’ll be swimsuit shopping for my post baby bod soon…EEEEK!


9 Sylvia

I think that one would be perfect for it. Exciting times ahead for you!


10 Heather Fonseca

That Polka dot retro one piece might make me forget all about bikinis! Love it.
Like you I’m a bikini girl, but I like a more modest bikini with a skirt or more covered boy short. Love your surfing story. Too funny.


11 Sylvia

Oh yes, love that one too. Perhaps even better than the green one… From what I can tell from your blog, I think you would have been right up there trying it with me!


12 Robert

I haven’t gone swimming yet this year, but planning to do so within the next few weeks. Last year’s bathing suit, is slightly too snug. So i’ve been shopping around for a new one. I’m looking more into vintage bathing suits, something like Esther Williams.


13 Sylvia

The Esther Williams bathing suits seem to be very well designed, so that may just be perfect. Good luck with your search!


14 Michelle

I just love the Esther Williams suits…elegant and retro. Reminds me of the pin-up girls. I mean that in a good way. I live in the southeast part of the US. Definitely time for pools and beaches. I’ve been looking for a new suit this year and was thinking of the “shortini”. I like the look of shorts and a tank….full coverage, but separates. I’m concerned about Nanne’s comment about making the thighs look larger. I’m overweight, but don’t have huge thighs. I think I’ll take the “plunge”


15 Sylvia

Hi Michelle. Thanks for your feedback! Yes wear something you are comfortable with. I think it’s true that bigger shorts and briefs will have the effect of making you look larger. But for the retro look that is what is meant to happen. Perhaps make sure your shorts are not too baggy and long and you should be ok!


16 Lee

Thank you so much for this! It is so refreshing to see fun styles for the women over 40! If more swimsuit designers would understand that women over 40 like more than just flowers, polka-dots or solid color swimsuits, they would make a fortune! It seems whenever a junior print comes along in a women’s swimsuit, it tends to sell out. I would love to see more swimsuits with beach print material such as flip flops. Or surf boards. Or sunglasses. Or shells. It is a neverending list of beachy prints!


17 Sylvia

hi Lee, Glad you like this item and welcome to the site!


18 Angel

so glad to find this website!


19 ellen

Where can I purchase the vintage polka dot one?


20 Sylvia

Unfortunately that bathing suit is no longer available, but I added some other (polkadot) bathing suits to the list that you may like.


21 Lorraine

I am still a bikini girl but usually take a swimsuit for trips out snorkelling or island hopping. I figure that I am never going to see the people I meet on holiday ever again so as long as I think I look ok that’s all that matters!
I always buy Freya bikinis as they fit like bras and always have nice patterns.


22 Sylvia

Yes very true Lorraine. I should look and see if I can find your Freya bikini online.


23 Lorraine

Freya are owned by the same people who make Fantasie u/wear & swimwear and their products are great quality. Forgot to say that I like the turquoise and blue shaded swimsuit.


24 Sylvia

Great! Found them and I have added some Freya pieces to the list.


25 Rita

Sadly, I don’t get to the ocean very often these days, though it is a great love of mine. I don’t wear swimsuits when I go, though. Somewhere along the line I decided I felt very awkward and exposed in a swimsuit (probably the same reason I don’t like figure-hugging clothes). I wear shorts and tees over a jogging bra (like I’m going running) all made of a quick-drying fabric. That way I can just step out of the water and walk on the beach without having to fuss with a cover-up. My father had melanoma before he died so I have no interest in sunning myself. I stick to going to the beach in the morning before 10am or after 4pm and use lost of sunscreen.


26 Sylvia

Yes good idea Rita!


27 Patti

I usually wear a rash guard (and the one you’re showing is very nice!) and board shorts. I need a lot of sun coverage.


28 Andrea

I agree with Patti. I need a rash guard and the ones you are showing are lovely. Thank you!


29 Kim Martin

Thank you for showing true size women! So many of us over 40 just don’t have the body we used too. Have you ever looked at Lands End swim suits? I love their endless options of tankini tops then you can mix & match the “swim mini” bottoms. The bottom has little skirt that nicely covers cellulite on the backside or bikini line rash from waxing/shaving.


30 Sylvia

Thanks for the recommendation. I have added some pieces from their collection to the page!


31 Greetje

That black bathing suit by J Crew with the ribbons on the shoulder… so nice. I would be tempted but not for ordering from the USA. Alas.


32 Post Surgery

My bust is small, tummy large, very hard to flatter this figure post mastectomy! Like tankini top flowy style.


33 M

Now that I’m over 50, I have been preferring more modest swim attire such as “swim dresses” that come down to either mid-thigh or just above my knees. I also prefer “boy shorts” with my bikini tops. I don’t see either of those swim options shown here so I wanted to let the ladies know that those options exist also. Venus has some and Athleta has some off the top of my head but others sell them as well.



It would be nice if the models were 40+!!!
Makes sense to me!


35 Sylvia

I would like that too but that’s not possible for a site like ours and here’s why. You will still find LOTS of 40+ women on this site though.


36 Beverly

Hi Sylvia,
I’m not sure if you’ve already addressed my concern in some of your other comments. I am 62, not overweight, run and walk daily and lift weights regularly. Since my early 40’s I have had severe cellulite on my thighs and now, my upper arms. I am very active, but find it unbearable to wear a swimsuit which will expose my thighs, literally to my knees.
Do you have any suggestions for swimsuits that are shapely but would help me not feel so uncomfortable?


37 Sylvia

For a top I do like to wear rash vests. some of them are super stylish and have long sleeves. For the bottom, if you are wearing the rash vest, try getting briefs that are a bit longer. Although you can now also get long pants as swim suits, I think that would only draw more attention there.
Rather I would buy a nice cover up. This can be semi see-through and go up to your knees but will do a good job at hiding your cellulite. (even though I don’t necessarily think that you should as probably only a few people would notice).
One last tip I’d like to give you is to perhaps try a roller. They have proven to be very effective to combat cellulite. There are specialist rollers for cellulite but I like this one Just lay on you side and roll your thighs over this with as much tension as you can bear. In the beginning you will not be able to do this for very long (or with much pressure) but with time it gets easier and you should see a lot of improvement with the cellulite. You may like to give it a try. In addition to combatting cellulite, it will also keep your muscles and fascia subtle 🙂


38 Barbara Richards

I am very conservative. Going out in a bikini, to me, is no different than going out in my bra and panties IN PUBLIC, to a beach. I just don’t do it. I wish they would make vintage swimsuits for the woman that is conscience of this because the furthest that I’ll go is wearing a suit BUT I have an amazing cover up that I rarely take off. Designers need to reach this sect of women because it’s discouraging to go into stores to see nothing that will work for me as discreet as I am.


39 Randi

For just plain swimming or water aerobics, you can’t beat the Land’s End Tugless One Piece. It’s very comfortable and very reasonably priced. LE often offers 25-30% off sales, which makes it a steal. The options for bra types and sizes is extensive. Comes in Petite, Regular and Long torso choices. You can choose solid, print or faux wrap styles. Not exactly “jazzy”, but if you want functionality, it’s a great choice.


40 Sherrill

Best thing about a tankini: you can get a better fit by mixing and matching different size tops and bottoms. My favorite top is Moorea from Prana, not least because it can be adjusted on the sides. Also like the LaBlanca halter @ Garnet Hill. A friend loves Title 9.

Bottoms more hot or miss, I find. I have a pair from Nautica I like best. Garnet Hill also has decent options. FWIW & good luck!


41 Karen

I too have self confidence issues with my body in public. Poochy thighs and very uneven breasts due to past cancer surgery. Now that board shorts are available ( I like the 9″ and
11″ Indians I buy those and always pair them with a Land’s End ranking to – feel confident. Also for women looking for more coverage of you Google “modest bathing suits” there are now companies making good quality suits that do cover more. BTW I am 69 so maybe looking for more coverage that those of you just over 40.


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