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Am I Too Old To Wear A Bikini?

March 3rd, 2016

One of the benefits of having a beau with a bateaux is that you get to frolic in the waves and sunshine when the weather is snowy and freezing back home.  So while I spent the morning bundled up in my woolies scraping the latest accumulation of a New England Winter off my windshield, my mind was elsewhere…upstairs packing for a trip to the Caribbean next week.  Sunblock, sarongs, flip-flops, bikini…wait…bikini…hmmm…

 At what point in our lives do we eschew the bikini for a more “appropriate” swimsuit?  I have been thinking about this since my last warm weather junket a few months prior.  I had ordered a few new suits, and when trying them on was forced to admit that the bottoms were exceptionally skimpy and daringly low cut.  They hadn’t looked that way on the 20-something model on the website!  Was it me?  I jumped on the scale and confirmed that my weight was where it should be.  I spun around a few times in the full-length mirror to make sure that gravity wasn’t playing some nasty trick on me.  I flexed, and posed, and hoisted, and for the most part, everything was where it had last been, but for some reason I was feeling particularly risqué and couldn’t help think that my recent crossing into the official land of middle age had something to do with it.

This is Garland tucking in my back fat before a shoot...

This is Garland tucking in my back fat before a shoot…

 I have always preferred bikinis, probably because they were frowned upon by my puritanical mother.  Wearing one was just another way to rebel.  After I had my first child I hid the jelly rolls in a one piece until I felt brave enough to wear two.  The first day in a bikini post baby was exhausting.  The next day my abs were so sore from constantly sucking them in that I thought I had discovered a new form of plyometric exercise.  I persevered, had two more children and never looked back. 

Strategically hiding the baby fat by using the baby as a decoy....

Strategically hiding the baby fat by using the baby as a decoy….

Until now.  And I keep looking at the backside.  My backside.  It’s not that I’m upset with the image, but I keep hearing a voice (that sounds remarkably like my mother’s) telling me that I’m a grown up now and its time to start dressing like one.  I’m wondering if I shouldn’t be wearing a black one piece with strategic ruching, maybe a miracle suit or one of those Herve Lerger type things.  The problem is, I like bikinis.  They make me feel young and carefree and acutely aware of my abdominals.  There is something akin to admitting defeat by going back to the land of the maillot.

Letting it all hang out with Mom and a cool floaty in the summer of '64...

Letting it all hang out with Mom and a cool floaty in the summer of ’64…

I managed to find a few suits that had more coverage and support and didn’t look matronly, and taking a chapter from my college-age daughters, I found that mixing and matching tops and bottoms gets the coverage and support job done in a funky, fashionable way.  But it was this picture of Helen Mirren that gave me the confidence to wear what I want.  If she can pull off this look at 65 then I see no reason to let the calendar tell me what I can and cannot wear!

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of



Copyright 2016

One Comment »

  • Thursday, March 3, 2016 at 4:30 pm
    Suzanne Baumann said:

    Sarah, this is smart and hilarious and you need to get yourself to Malia Mills and get the most bomb bikini ever. Or Eres. Miracle suits are wicked lame and cheap.

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