Summer Swimsuit Trends 2012

by Rebecca Isenhart

Photo by Rebecca Isenhart

June has arrived, and it’s time to hit every beach, pool party, music festival, waterpark, and backyard barbecue with radiant confidence. Time to say goodbye to your ancient string bikini – you know the one. This season, make your swimwear reflect your fantastic sense of style. Here are the most up-to-date trends you should keep an eye out for on your next shopping trip:

Candy Colors

Almost pastels, but a little sweeter and more flattering on most skin tones, this season’s Tiffany blues, coral pinks, and buttercup yellows are perfectly playful. Pair these suits with white accents, like a crochet cover-up or sunglasses. You’ll be in for a real treat!

      1. Ruched Lido Halter Top and Glamour-Girl Bikini, JCrew, $44 and $42.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

      2. Aida Bandeau and Foxy Tab Bottom in Coral,, $76 and $58.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

      3. Reiss Metal Trim Bandeau Bikini,, $95 for top and bottom.

Buy them both here.
Tribal and Floral Patterns

If you lean toward unique statement pieces in your wardrobe, this summer’s intricate designs are made for you. From abstract geometric designs to detailed creations reminiscent of colorful tattoos, these suits will work for any bold fashionista! Score a more grown-up look by keeping your accessories earthy. Try an armful of braided bracelets or simple leather sandals.

      4. Sayulita Banded Halter Bikini and Sayulita Medium Tide Bottom, Athleta, $54 and $46.

Buy them both here.

      5. Becca Samba Night Push-Up Swimwear Top and Samba Night Bottom, Buckle, $78 and $50.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

Rocking a tan? Make it stand out with beachwear that’s so bright, it puts highlighters to shame. But don’t go all Jersey Shore on me! Keep these colors classy by choosing modest cuts — no skimpy string bikinis allowed.

      6. Techno Tribe Triangle Bikini Top and Fold Over Hipster, Speedo, $42 each.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

      7. Crochet Neon Bandeau and Side-Tie Bottoms, Delia’s, $24.50 each.

Buy them both here.

      8. Madi Push-Up Bandeau Top and Side Ruched Low-Rise Hipkini Bottom, $28 and $18 (Comes in 17 colors).

Buy them both here.

Nothing says “I’m a little eccentric, but I like it that way” quite like fringe on a bikini. It’s unnecessary, it’s a little bit odd, but if you can pull it off, heads will certainly turn. Pair with cutoffs or flowy maxi skirts and patterned hair accessories to channel that Lollapalooza look. But be careful — don’t overdo the fringe! Try these suits on before you make your final decision to make sure you don’t cross the line from “free spirit” to “wet dog.”

      9. Lira Malibu Bikini Top,, $42. (Pair it with any bottom or even shorts. Mix and match for a different suit every day!)

Buy it here.

      10. Neon Fringe Suit Tri Top and Keyhole Bottom, Delia’s, $17 and $15.

Buy them both here.

      11. DAMSEL Fringe Swimsuit,, $29.99.

Buy it here.

Modest cuts and feminine accents like bows and polka dots make Mad Men addicts everywhere very, very happy. Channel your inner Joan or Betty in these sweet ensembles. To take this look to the next level, skip the traditional cover-up and opt for a high-waisted skirt en route to the beach. If you’re really dedicated, throw on some cat-eye sunglasses.

      12. Bathing Beauty One-Piece in Needlepoint, Modcloth, $89.99.

Buy it here.

      13. “Bow Tide” Swimsuit Top & Bottom, Modcloth, $57.99 and $59.99.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

      14. Underwire Retro Balconet Top & Ruched Top Hipster, Delia’s, $24.50 each.

Buy them both here.

Not only are ruffles sweet and feminine, they can do wonders if you want to appear a little more curvy. Add modesty and volume by choosing a bikini with ruffles up top or in back. For a truly flawless beach day, style hair into equally feminine braids. Whether French or fishtail, they’ll complement your girly style while keeping your hair secured against salty ocean breezes.

      15. Becca Cha Cha Swimwear Top and Bottom, Buckle, $88 and $48.

Buy the top here and the bottom here.

      16. Boudoir London St. Tropez Ruffle One-Piece Swimsuit, (online only), $99.

Buy it here.

      17. Green Extreme Ruffle Top and Bottom, Old Navy, $12.50 each.

Buy it here.

This season’s assortment of cutout suits are packed with personality and sex appeal, while still leaving some skin to the imagination. Go sweet, sporty, or sexy – there are versions to suit every taste. Just be sure to pile on the SPF before slipping into one of these suits to avoid strange tan lines.

      18. Salt Cassidy Cutout One-Piece Swimsuit, (online only), $85.

Buy it here.

      19. Undrest Halterneck Cutout Swimsuit,, $95.

Buy it here.

      20. Water Print Asymmetrical One Shoulder Cut-Out, Speedo, $74.

Buy it here.
I hope these suggestions help you feel like a million bucks while you bask on the beach! Happy shopping (and swimming, and tanning)!

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