One of the things we often get asked, here at The Mom Edit, is what are the best swimsuits for after-baby? Typically, everyone’s looking for postpartum suits that flatten the pooch, feature tummy control, cover stretch marks and fit in a flattering, supportive way. It’s a topic we’ve been discussing for years now.
What we’re not interested in? Bathing suits with a million straps that make it impossible to know where the arm goes, awkward underboob situations, or unsupportive swimsuits with a ton of pully-bits that the babes can chomp on. Instead, we love strategic ruching (or cut-outs), pretty prints, tummy-control and most importantly — support.
Cute & Flattering: The Top 11 Swimsuits For Postpartum Moms
After scouring the internet for weeks, working with the team to pull together our 2022 Swim Guide and 2022 Bikini Guide (perhaps in the midst of drooling over all the gorgeous suits)…inspiration sparked: it’s time for a 2022 update on postpartum swimwear. Most of our brainstorming can be found in Julieta’s epic article on the best postpartum swimsuits (fun fact: she was testing out some of the approaches Shana’s tried in her old article on postpartum swim — written 10(!!) years ago when Pax was just a baby). I also include some options that our highly opinionated readers have really loved over the years (and we really love you guys. Thanks, as always, for sharing your thoughts!!).
First and foremost, we’ll always emphasize that one should love their body regardless of change, societal pressure and, quite frankly, f-ed-up beauty standards. ALL bodies are beach bodies and all swimsuits are postpartum swimsuits (except for the extremely uncomfortable, make-you-feel-no-joy swimsuits, of course).
So don’t shy away from wearing whatever makes you happy — even (especially?) that string bikini, mama. You did the damn thing! Basking in the sun wearing a suit you feel free and comfortable in is more than deserved. But if you’d like a little guidance on where to start, we do have some recommendations, based on past experience. Eleven tips to be exact.
A polka dot bikini? Never a bad idea. The key to this suit (besides the print acting as a distraction from the pooch)…is that the high-waisted bikini bottom comes over the belly button (a preferred method for a lot of postpartum moms), and the belt helps accentuate the waist. For those looking for a top that has a supportive wire, give this one a shot.
Wear the bold suit! Black isn’t the only flattering shade (and this one comes in a ton of pretty colors). Really, it’s about the shape, tummy-control and cut of the suit that can totally change the game. This one from J.Crew has super-flattering ruching that can hide a pooch (and is pretty nursing-friendly, to boot). If you’re someone who prefers more coverage (doesn’t particularly like a high-cut leg or cheeky bottom), this one’s for you.
This suit comes recommended by Julieta and is a reader favorite, too. This blouson style one-piece is a stylish upgrade from the tankini family — much more flattering and supportive for a postpartum belly and a little bit fancier. Would look great with a pair of cut-offs, too.
Color-blocking: a genius little trick for creating the illusion of a waist and hiding a postpartum stomach. And this one, in black-and-white, is chic and sophisticated, postpartum or not. Another great option for nursing mamas, too.
5 | Boden Bikini
The type of suit you’ll never get sick of summer after summer. The top is a classic halter style that’s great for some support. If you’re looking to cover a soft belly or stretch marks, these Boden bikini bottoms are perfectly high-waisted for that. Reviews mention it’s a great postpartum option and the bottoms hold everything in.
If you’re a short-torso gal like Shana, a super-high-waist might not fit the best (like the Anthro one mentioned above). This J.Crew bikini looks more promising for the petite gals. The pattern creates a camouflage for a soft stomach and the tie detail adds a little more coverage, too.
This green bathing suit from Amazon has a ton of great reviews — supportive up top for larger busts, ruching is great for hiding a soft belly, even the back has a flattering cut (and hello, crotchet back giving a slightly sexy boho vibe). Definitely take a look at the other color options, too. They’re good.
Every year, our readers report that this was their suit of choice postpartum. Sea Level’s sporty, rashguard-esque bathing suit would be great for nursing mamas (thank you, zipper-front) and it’s supportive in a sleek way. Check out Amy’s full review of Sea Level suits (including this suit mentioned above but in a fun stripe).
I just love this suit. Honestly, I’d wear it as a top after the beach. Something about a low-cut, halter neckline is so flattering, great for nursing mamas, and disguises a postpartum stomach shockingly well. The ruching/knot situation on the stomach is also great for camouflaging a soft belly. And check out that low back! This suit is a really chic option to invest in.
A sporty bikini for the moms chasing beeb down the beach. But really, this looks super-supportive up top (definitely no accidental slippage going on). The cut of these Athleta bikini bottoms (and after taking a look at some reviews) seem pretty high-waisted, so it might be a better option for tallish gals, but if you’re looking for more tummy control or to cover stretch marks…this one’s a good option.
This printed suit by BLEU comes recommended by Meredith (check out her latest swim post to see her try it on). It really has it all going on in one suit — camouflaging with print, ruching, supportive straps and an underwire that makes it great for larger busts. If you’re more of a full-coverage gal…this one’s perfect for that, too. No cheeky bums here.
Hopefully there are some tips and tricks in here to help all the postpartum mamas with their swimsuit shopping. Our biggest tip, though…wear what makes you feel good.
P.S. For even more one and two-piece options check out our brand new 2022 Swim Guide, here.
This one’s for the Pinners…