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Fifties create the latest fashion trend - the Grankini
07
Sep '10
Debenhams has reported that sales of swimsuit styles which are traditionally associated with the under 30s are soaring thanks to role model glamour-grannies like Helen Mirren and Goldie Hawn taking the plunge.

So strong is the trend that swimwear buyers have dubbed the skimpy beachwear the 'grankini'.

Sales of bikinis at fashion retailer Debenhams have risen by 118%, driven by women who were ironically born around the time of the two-piece's invention in 1946.

When Debenhams customers between the ages of 50 and 65 were asked what style of swimwear they take on holiday, 71% admitted to trading in their one-piece for a more revealing two-piece.

Sasha Nagalingham, swimwear buyer at Debenhams, said, "There are no rules to say when a woman should retire her bikini.

"Women over 50 are as interested in looking glamorous as their younger counterparts; and the beach is no exception.

"Over 74% of the customers who now wear a bikini also said that they had been inspired by images of older celebrity women stepping out in a two-piece, with Helen Mirren's red bikini the most commonly mentioned instance."

In 2008 Helen Mirren was photographed wearing a show-stopping red bikini on a beach in Italy, just days before her 63rd birthday -- an image that is still driving the 'grankini' craze two years later.

Sasha continued, "Like it or not, a full costume on an older lady instantly says 'granny'; but wearing a supportive, well proportioned bikini is less aging and accentuates rather than hides natural shape.

"This is not about an older woman throwing on a string bikini and hoping for the best -- advances in swimwear technology mean that we can now create bikinis that flatter a mature shape."

Wider straps, gauge wires and built-in mesh support hoist and shape breasts in the same way that lingerie does, while bikini bottoms with higher waist lines offer coverage for any wobbly bits or stretch marks.

Celebrities driving the Grankini trend include Helen Mirren (65), Jerry Hall (54), Ivana Trump (61), Sharon Stone (52), Goldie Hawn (65), Madonna (52) and Kim Cattrall (52).

Debenhams is a leading department stores group, and has a strong presence in key product categories including children's wear, women's fashion, with day dresses, shoes, bikinis, jeans, men's clothing, home ware, make-up, health and beauty, accessories, perfume and lingerie with dd+ bras and matching bra and underwear sets.

Debenhams plc

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