5 Confidence Tips for Sporting Your Swimsuit

Teens in Sunglasses staring at the camera

When it comes to bathing suits, a lot of people don't feel comfortable showing off at the beach or the pool. That's why DoSomething.org talked with a health editor from Seventeen Magazine and other body image experts to find out how to promote positive body image within yourself and among your friends. 5 easy tips we collected are:

Go bold. According to Kim Tranell, Health Editor at Seventeen Magazine, "If you’re feeling a little uneasy about your tummy, your first instinct may be to choose a plain suit that helps you blend in. But many guys and girls actually say they’ve felt most confident in bold colors and crazy patterns, because they feel like it takes the attention off their body—and puts it on the cool, head-turning suit."

Find a suit that suits you. Choosing a bathing suit isn’t about following trends— when you're shopping with friends, try out different styles. "If you're curvy, look through vintage-looking swimsuits from the 1940s and 50s," Ophira Edut, author of the positive-image book Body Outlaws, advises girls with an hourglass figure.

Assess the realities. A last-minute jog or a few crunches in the morning isn’t going to give a guy an instant-sixpack by the time he gets to the sand. "Know that your self-worth and esteem is not tied to the way you look," says Dr. Roberto Olivardia, Clinical Psycholist at Harvard Medical School, "Confidence and assertiveness also carry power. You body language will show that."

Try ordering online. "You can try them on anxiety-free in your own home instead of under the harsh, unflattering dressing room lights," suggests Ophira Edut.

Don't forget to smile. Kim Tranell's simple advice is, "When you’re smiling, laughing, and having a good time, it’s hot. Period. (Seriously, next time you’re at the beach, look around! Chances are the most attractive people you see don’t have “model” bodies—but they are happy, confident, and rocking what they’ve got.)"