Finding Confidence in the Sun: Choosing and Using a Swimsuit After a Mastectomy

Woman walking on the beach in a swimsuit and a dress

Following a mastectomy one can still have that profound experience of regaining one’s confidence with their body. That means you are not limited in your fashion choices right after the surgery. Those fashion choices include ones made when in a beach setting or under the sun. When your doctor gives you the clearance to enjoy activities in the water again, you will want to start thinking about the fun ways you can get dressed up for the swim. For this article this is about embracing the new you and enjoying life’s simple pleasures in the water. Here’s how to navigate the process of choosing a mastectomy swimsuit and gaining the confidence to flaunt it.

Swimsuit Options

Post-mastectomy swimwear has come a long way. No longer do you need to get an off-the-shelf swimsuit and modify it to your needs. Post-mastectomy swimsuits are designed with pockets to accommodate breast forms or prostheses. They often feature higher necklines and armholes for added coverage and security. Here are some of the options you might come across:

  1. Tankinis: These two-piece swimsuits can offer the convenience of a bikini and the coverage of a one-piece. They are often designed with built-in bras and prosthesis pockets. If you want a modest approach to swimwear where you don’t reveal too much skin , tankinis are approachable and comfortable. You can even choose the ones with skirt bottoms so more than just a swimwear, it makes for a great beach wear you can walk around with.
  2. One-Piece Swimsuits: A classic choice offering full coverage. This is often the most common type of swimsuit chosen by swimmers because of how secure it is when swimming without the drag that other swimwear may cause. It is also easier when it comes to choosing because you need not match the top and bottom piece. Many post-mastectomy one-pieces come with adjustable straps and high necklines for comfortable and secure fits.
  3. Bikinis: Yes, post-mastectomy bikinis exist, and they are fabulous! These bikinis are designed to hold a prosthesis securely and are perfect for those who want to embrace their scars. Remember, showing some skin is not limited after surgery. Women are beautiful with or without their scars and other skin markings. If you find it challenging to embrace your new look, check out our tips below for wearing your swimsuit with confidence.
  4. Swim dresses: If you prefer more coverage, swim dresses are a stylish option. They have built-in swimsuit bottoms and prosthesis pockets. Whether you show more skin or preferably cover up more, your choice boils down to what you feel comfortable with and not what people tell you what you should wear.

Choosing the Right Swimsuit

Charming coquettish young curly haired brunette in retro swimsuit and headband representing 50s beach fashion standing against white background

When it comes to selecting a post-mastectomy swimsuit, remember that the best swimsuit for you is the one you feel most confident and comfortable in. However, it is also important to look at the swimwear’s features which are most often something you think only after you have finally tried wearing post-mastectomy swimwear. So to avoid buyer’s remorse have a look at these considerations below:

  • Prosthesis Pockets: Ensure the swimsuit has prosthesis pockets if you’re planning to wear a swim form. These pockets should securely hold your prosthesis, ensuring it stays in place while swimming.
  • Comfort: Choose a swimsuit that feels comfortable. You don’t want to be adjusting your suit continually, so ensure it fits well and doesn’t dig into your skin or restrict your movements. Adjustable straps will be something you want to consider so that you are not limited by the fixed size of the straps of your swimsuit.
  • Coverage: Depending on your comfort level, you may want to opt for a suit with higher armholes and necklines for added coverage and security. Some designs will also use color contrasting to create an illusion of more coverage than lighter swimsuits.
  • Style and Color: Don’t compromise on style. Choose a color and design that reflects your personality and makes you feel beautiful. Bespoke swimsuits are also available for those who wish to opt for specific styles. 

Gaining Confidence

Embracing your body after a mastectomy can be challenging. But remember, confidence comes from within, and here are some ways to boost it:

  • Practice: Try on your swimsuit at home before hitting the beach or pool. Walk around, sit, stand, and move as you would normally. The more comfortable you are in your swimsuit at home, the more confident you’ll feel in public. Have a look at the mirror to get a better idea of what your overall look is like. 
  • Positive Affirmations: Remind yourself of your strength and resilience. You’ve survived a life-changing surgery, and that makes you incredibly powerful. This is your power and strength. 
  • Support Group: Consider joining a support group even if just online.. Sharing your experiences and hearing from women who’ve walked the same path can be incredibly encouraging. You’ll be surprised at just how many women all over the world share the same experiences you do.
  • Professional Help: If you’re finding it tough, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. Therapists and counselors can provide tools and techniques to improve body image and self-esteem.

Post-Mastectomy Swim Forms

If you’re planning to swim post-mastectomy, you might want to consider swim forms. They’re lighter than regular prostheses and are designed to withstand water. Some even mimic the natural movement of a breast while swimming. Remember, whether to use a swim form or not is entirely up to you. Do whatever makes you feel most comfortable and confident.

Finally, remember that everyone at the beach or pool is there to enjoy themselves, just like you. People are usually more concerned about their swimwear worries than noticing others. You have every right to soak up the sun and enjoy the water. So, choose a swimsuit that makes you feel fantastic, embrace your body, and dive in!

Selecting a post-mastectomy swimsuit and gaining the confidence to wear it can feel like a daunting task. But by understanding your options and embracing your beauty, you can confidently reclaim your place in the sun. You’ve faced the storm; now it’s time to dance in the sunlight.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top