What to wear to the beach

Swimsuit from the Mermaid Scales collection

Swimsuit from the Mermaid Scales collection - Credit: Archant

When it comes to beachwear, fashion guru Paula Fry recommends you invest in a great swimsuit or bikini that shows off your best assets then have fun accessorising

Paula Fry says …

Ladies. It is time. It’s time to buff, polish, exfoliate, pluck, wax and fake tan. This month, we’re talking beach fashion.

I’m not one to follow swimwear trends as I think you need to be guided by your shape. For instance, I love some of the string bikini styles but I’m afraid I need a little more structure up top. Here is my definitive guide to buying swimwear.

• Hold me now: if you need support, buy your bikini top in your bra size. High Street shops and lingerie stores alike now provide bikini tops to fit and support. If you’re smaller chested, the padded cup is your friend. Need support downstairs? Go for a fifties-style one or two-piece.

• I should be so lucky: if you are blessed, you may be able to buy a two-piece in one size but, for most of us, we are not necessarily the same dress size top and bottom, so look for stores that sell separates. This trick also gives the illusion of wearing different bikinis as you can mix and match. Make sure you buy some plain and some prints in tonal colours.

• A whiter shade of pale: avoid white swimwear. They pick up the colour of your lotions and potions plus can go see through when wet. Never a good look.

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• Shine bright like a diamond: bejewelled swimswear is fab, but make sure the bling doesn’t touch your skin; if they get hot, they can burn.

• Let’s get loud: print, more print, florals, splashes of colour – the beach is the place to go colour crazy with your kaftans, your flips flops, your beach bag and your accessories. No excuses.

You can leave your hat on: ladies of all ages need a hat; they keep you cool, they make you look cool and they protect your delicate skin and eyes.

I am in love with my straw trilby, which I have hand embellished myself, but I equally adore a man’s panama (M&S are great for these) or a cowboy hat – in white, beige, cream or black.Twitter: @cityfashgal