There are few things more excruciating than going bathing suit shopping, probably for everyone, but especially for those of us with on the, uh, top-heavy side. I, for one, have never made it out of a single swimsuit buying excursion without a solid amount of tears and the occasional pinched nerve.
For some reason, most bathing suit manufacturers have clung, for years, to the belief that every woman who wants to go swimming—particularly a two-piece—is not only under a C-cup, but also wants additional padding. Which... no.
Swimsuits that are made for us bigger-breasted ladies tend to be made under the assumption that we really hate fashion and/or are super into Minnie Pearl cosplay. Which is fine if you're going for a whole vintage Esther Williams thing...
But this is admittedly not a look for everyone.
And hell, even half of those suits, despite at least providing coverage, don't always provide the structure one needs to, uh, keep things in place.
So what is a gal to do? Enter Lily & Lime, founded in 2016 by Emma-Jane Hughes and Ashleigh Hill, two women who were tired of the bathing suit options available for women with significant racks, and decided to start making and selling their own.
As of now, they're selling about 30 different styles that are all available in sizes 28D to 38HH. Hallelujah! Even better, most styles give you an option of having a traditional bikini-style bottom, or a high-waisted brief style.
"A healthy amount of coverage is provided without being overwhelming, for me the full cup provides my ideal level of boob exposure when it comes to a bikini. Wearing the Full Cup I feel completely confident, content, and secure. My boobs feel very aptly supported and lifted, creating a wonderfully subtle and natural shape." Julie on the Full Cup. We have now extended our Full Brief bottom sizes from an AU8/US4 - AU22/US18. For any fitting or style questions get in touch #lillyandlimeswimwear #dcupandup #fullcup #fullbrief #stripe #swimwear #bikini #lillyandlimereview
What's also great -- and very helpful -- is that the site also includes a whole section for real women to post pictures of themselves in the swimwear, in order to help other women see what the suits will look like on their particular body type and breast size, without all the horror and the screwed up hair and makeup and pulled shoulder muscles of the department store fitting room.
The only problem is that they only go up to a 38 band size -- hopefully they'll expand their size ranges soon, because a lot of women with band sizes bigger than a 38 would like to get in the water as well.
It'll be swell if one day major retailers catch on to the fact that women come in all different shapes and sizes, but until then, it's nice to see independent companies to come in and fill this void.