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Meet the Merchants

Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

Your Biggest Supporters:
The Best Bikinis for Large Busts

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If you trend toward the bigger-busted and have ever stood in front of a rack of swimsuits wondering which bikini top could possibly contain you, the solution is surprisingly simple: Look for a bikini top with a true-to-bra size.

“So many women steer away from bikinis because they only see themselves in sizes small, medium, large or extra-large, and they don’t know which will fit or support them best,” says Bare Necessities swimwear buyer Megan Puma. “That’s all the more reason to seek out bikinis with real bra-like construction, underwire and adjustable straps to give you the lift you need to feel secure.”

Summer’s coming, so join in as Megan rounds up the best of this season’s bikinis for big busts: Continue Reading

Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

Welcome to Swimsuits 2017

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MeganBelieve it or not, swim season is upon us. Of course, for many of us, shopping for swimwear has been a beyond stressful experience in the past. Fret no longer. Our resident swim expert, buyer Megan Puma (at left), is here to help.

We caught up with Megan to find out what’s new in the world of swimwear and, most importantly, how you can look and feel your best in a bathing suit.

Interview with Megan Puma, Swim Expert and Buyer

Q: How did you come to work in the swimwear industry, and what do you love about it? 
A: I’ve been working in swimwear since I was 16 years old, when I started out in a specialty swimwear shop as a sales associate. I gained a lot of one-on-one experience helping women find suits that made them feel comfortable in their own skin. Then I went to college to study fashion, marketing and management. While there, I worked in the swim company’s corporate office to learn about different aspects of the business, including buying.

I’ve been involved in buying a few other product categories, and swimwear has always been my favorite. Most women struggle with finding a suit that they’re comfortable in. At Bare Necessities, we have this incredible platform to put together an assortment to suit women of all shapes and sizes and hopefully make everyone feel confident. My passion comes from those “lightbulb moments” customers have when they try on the right suit—when they finally find the style that will let them enjoy the summertime activities they were dreading before.

Q: What has your experience taught you about women and swimwear? 
A: That we shouldn’t focus on the number of the size printed on the tag! Instead, let’s focus on wearing whatever size suits our body the best. As in all product categories, sizing isn’t the same across the board. While I was working in the stores, there were times when I would rip the tags off the suits so the customers would try on the size I knew would work best for them. We all get so hung up on a number, but the point should really be to find what makes you feel the most amazing.

The advice I always come back to is this: Continue Reading

Behind the Seams, Meet the Merchants, Personal Style

The BN Roundtable: Real Talk About How to Rock and Shop for Shapewear

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The holidays are high season for breaking out the shapewear, but it can be challenging (yeah, major understatement) to know where to begin, even if you’re already a fan of what it can do for your body confidence. So we brought together the office evangelists—plus one skeptic—for some capital-R-real talk about shapewear: who it’s for (spoiler alert: everybody), what’s out there to choose from, why it can make your day and your figure that much smoother. Come listen in….

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Meet the Merchants, Personal Style

2016 Fall Fashion Trends and Stylish Bra Pairings

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Welcome to fall, that narrow window of perfect weather in which you’re desperately waiting for the temperature to dip juuust low enough so you can wear your cutest ankle boots and leather jacket on the reg. Here’s a controversial statement, but autumn is undoubtedly the best fashion season—reference the encyclopedia-thick September issue of any fashion magazine if you need proof.

We spoke with Jess Kirby, style expert at the highly regarded fashion blog Prosecco & Plaid, and Bare Necessities premium bra buyer Heather Viskovic to get the scoop on the latest and greatest. They’re in total agreement: To ensure you rock Fall 2016’s coolest seasonal fashion trends with confidence, start at base level with the proper undergarments. Jess and Heather reviewed all the major fashion trends and named the best bra to match with each clothing style. Continue Reading

Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

How to Dress for the Beach at Any Age

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If age ain’t nothing but a number, why does it feel like bathing suit shopping gets harder the older we get? Here’s the secret to life and how to dress for the beach: Nothing is possible without a little (or, in some cases, a lot of) support.

The very same suits—one-piece swimwear or more modest swimsuits, even a bikini or swim dress—can work on any body, at any age. The key is in the fit. If it feels good to put on, you feel good wearing it. Right? Right. So flex that wisdom and focus on the important stuff. When dressing for the beach, work with what you have, because both a soft midsection and absolutely fabulous abs all have a place on this summer’s bathing suit best-dressed list. With the help of a few friends, we produced the proof.

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Behind the Seams, Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Pop Culture

Festival Fashion: This is the Dawning of the Age of Festival Bralettes and Festival Lingerie

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Summer is synonymous with concerts, which lift the spirit like little else. Hot on the heels of Coachella last month, we’re looking ahead to Governors Ball (June 3-5 in NYC), Bonnaroo (June 9-12 in Manchester, TN), Firefly (June 16-19 in Dover, DE), Newport Folk Festival (July 22-24 in Newport, RI), Lollapalooza (July 28-31 in Chicago) and Outside Lands (August 5-7 in San Francisco), among others.

Thanks to all these shows, festival lingerie is a thing that’s happening. Hand in hand with the bohemian-influenced clothes, the underpinnings are unlined, lacy and diaphanous, with a vintage quality. They’re unstructured and easy to wear (particularly for smaller busts, but there’s a way for all sizes to get in on the festival bralette trend, too). Read on for our staffers’ picks of the best bands and the best bralettes.

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Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

Guide to the Best Tankinis:
Everything You Need to Know

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Jeni Doherty, our in-house swimwear expert

Jeni Doherty, our in-house swimwear expert

We like to think of tankinis as the MVP of swim season, or the most popular kid in class: Everyone loves these crowd-pleasing two-pieces. They’re the rare style that works darn near effortlessly for every age, every figure, every activity level, every style preference and every budget.

“Tankinis are a smart, stylish alternative to your traditional extremes: a bikini or a one-piece,” says our own swimwear aficionado Jeni Doherty. “They’re modest without being overly so, they’re really easy to wear and they’re practically customizable. Tankinis come in endless colors, prints and sizes, too.”

They’re especially great for those of us who:

  • aren’t quite the same size on top and bottom
  • prefer mixing and matching
  • want to affordably extend a swimwear wardrobe
  • spend equal amounts of time in and out of the water
  • like to be able to cover up a little in the sun (or show some skin for short lengths of time)
  • need to accommodate a longer torso

We rounded up our best tankinis to make swimsuit shopping as easy and foolproof as possible so you can get on with the important business of actually enjoying your getaway.

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Meet the Merchants, Personal Style

The Top 6 Lingerie Essentials for Event Season

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You are cordially invited to…Event Season!

Now that spring has descended, everyone’s calendars swell with celebrations: weddings, proms, showers, graduations, bachelorette parties, birthday soirees, twilight cocktails, backyard cookouts—you get the gist.

And when it’s time to get fancy, it follows that your intimate apparel needs special consideration. (You cannot wear granny panties with a gown. It just doesn’t work.) That’s why we invited Heather Garcia, our merchandise manager, top left, and her outgoing team of merchants to help get us flawlessly dressed with the top lingerie essentials for this season’s social circuit. Continue Reading

Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

The Best Slimming Swimsuits: A Spotlight on Miraclesuit and Magicsuit

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Jeni-98910Odds are, a bathing suit is the single most revealing garment you’re ever going to wear in public. So yeah, there’s every reason in the world to expect those few yards of fabric should be working overtime to cut you a secure, stylish figure. That’s why we pledge our eternal allegiance to the best slimming swimwear there is—Miraclesuit and Magicsuit (“making women feel confident and beautiful since 1927”). And there may be no bigger fan than Jeni Doherty, our resident swimwear expert.

Miraclesuit invented the concept with their claim to fame: “Look 10 pounds lighter in 10 seconds.” Jeni concurs: “They’re unsurpassed at slimming swimwear. And they’re definitely not the traditional Miraclesuit you may remember from the nineties, either; there’s a suit for every body, every age.”

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Meet the Merchants, Personal Style, Swimwear

The Best Tummy Hiding and Tummy Control Swimsuits

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jeni_torsoWhen donning a swimsuit, everyone has her own hot-button issue. And unless your idea of a good time is contracting your abs every waking minute (not ours, for the record), chances are your nemesis may be the stomach area.

Fear not: There’s a bunch of different ways to find a tummy-hiding swimsuit you’ll feel confident in, according to our genius swimwear buyer Jeni Doherty. Here are her four foolproof favorites for the best tummy control swimsuits:

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