The Fashionista is in: bikini beat

Bermuda, Bahamas, come on pretty mama — Spring Break ’13 is around the corner and a new swimsuit is a need, not a want.

Shannon Ryan

Wherever your plane ticket reads or your Dodge Neon drives, sunshine and bliss is just shy of two weeks away. And that requires new sunscreen — UV ray protection is sexy — and new swimsuits.

Leading fashion retailers unveil hundreds of new looks each year, rendering the same three styles in a plethora of shapes, colors and cuts. Perhaps you skimped on new bikinis last season and are itching for something current, or maybe you’re too scared to dare to wear sexy cutouts; this quiz will guide you in the right suit direction.


Question 1:

What type of underwear are you most prone to slipping into?

A. Thong

B. Cheekies

C. Hip huggers


Question 2:

If going on a spring break vacation, where would you choose?

A. Panama City Beach

B. Cabo San Lucas

C. Sanibel Island


Question 3:

When participating in a formal event, which type of dress would you purchase?

A. Body-con

B. Maxi dress

C. A-line frock


Question 4:

Which celebrity do you most identify with?

A. Zooey Deschanel

B. Kristen Bell

C. Salma Hayek


Question 5:

Which store is your go-to for new swimsuits?

A. Target

B. Urban Outfitters

C. Victoria’s Secret


Question 6:

What kind of flower are you most drawn to?

A. Orchid

B. Daisy

C. Rose



  1. A. 3; B. 2; C. 1
  2. A. 2; B. 3; C. 1
  3. A. 1; B. 2; C. 0
  4. A. 2; B. 1; C. 3
  5. A. 2; B. 1; C. 2
  6. A. 2; B. 1; C. 1


7 points and below: Retro, high-waist bikini

Vintage-inspired swimwear is divine and has made a strong statement in beachwear over the past couple of seasons. Holding the chest and stomach in place with the reminiscence of a pinup perfection, going retro is still a feminine alternative to the traditional bikini, but it plays with a comforting insouciance for flair.

If trying high-waist for the first time, go with a solid color for less distraction. Prints draw more attention to the body. If craving the spotlight, go with a pretty paisley; solid black is a solid option for the wallflowers.


8-11 points: String bikini

You really can’t beat the attraction of a skimpy bikini, especially in the right shade or shade pairings. Simple and classic triangle tops with barely-there coverage are a swim-wardrobe necessity and spring break staple.

Mint green and sharp tangerines are bold and ostentatious colors to try this season, both pairing well with a fine tan. Steer clear of whites without padding; otherwise a quick dip will issue you a ticket for indecent exposure on the family friendly beach.


12 points and above: Monokini

Nothing says va-va-voom like a well-fit monokini among a sea of bikinis. It’s an inherent juxtaposition: more coverage issues more sex appeal. The deep V neckline and intricate details are coy and ideal for those seeking more ogling stares than sunshine.

When wearing a one-piece, going with a print can either be too matronly or oppositely childish. Solid colors speak more volumes in this case, and dark is always more alluring. A classic navy or a deep burgundy looks romantic and beautiful in the sunlight.