ODE TO THE ONEPIECE

By Eloise Retallick

I’m thinking about Pamela Anderson’s high cut red one piece on Baywatch. Bo Derek’s nearly-not-there tan one piece and beaded braids. Farrah Fawcett’s pre Charlie’s Angels red swimsuit, so iconic it presently calls the Smithsonian home. Some of the sexiest women in history have embraced the one piece on beaches the world over.

Less is more – and I don’t mean less fabric. Australian beach bums’ right to bare skin has become like the Americans’ right to bare arms; it’s all fun and fanfare until JFK is assassinated and innocents at Bondi are blindsided by breasts with a reveal more than you conceal policy.

The term ‘bikini body’ imposes the idea that the bikini is the only option for our summer beachwear. This could not be further from the truth.

It is apparent that society cannot grasp how very few bodies look sexy chopped in three. The gods of fashion history recognised long ago that drawing attention to a woman’s waist is more flattering than their hips. So why is it that when the sun comes out to play we lose our minds and our senses of style?

I’m not saying women everywhere need to cover their kneecaps. Honestly, I’m as big a fan of showing some sneaky cleavage as the next girl; but sometimes it’s nice to leave a little to the imagination.

The one piece affords us the freedom to enjoy swimming without fear of losing your skinny dipping virginity. How many women out there have experienced the earth-shattering realisation that their bikini top rode the last wave out to sea and they’re standing stupid and topless at shore?

I confess I have spent long days at uni holding my folder with one hand and my too short skirt down with the other. This is, I imagine, how the girl who her clutches her string bikini clad boobs feels as she takes the plunge into the local pool. Witnesses to this folly are left looking for and playing with the nearest inanimate object in an attempt to disguise their discomfort.

The moral of the story is that we look our best (and have more fun) when we’re comfortable. Not everyone fits into the triangle shaped box that is the bikini. I urge all beach goers this summer to explore the swimwear options available to you, so that you too might have the opportunity to experience the love affair with the swimsuit that, unlike the bikini, loves you back. «

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