Tankinis are seeing an explosive growth in popularity with women of all shapes and sizes, but especially amongst plus size women. A tankini was prominently featured on a plus size swimwear segment of the �Today Show� at the start of the 2007 summer season and was an immediate hit. Plus size women�s clothing has been leading the way in design that is both stunningly beautiful and innovatively functional with the plus size tankini being perhaps the ultimate example of this.

The original bikini was an immediate sensation, creating a stir from the French Riviera to the beach at Malibu. Film stars such as Brigitte Bardot and Jayne Mansfield showed off the virtues of the bikini in eye-popping fashion and became instant bikini icons. The proliferation of surfer movies with the word� Bikini� in the title forever sealed the bikini into our consciousness.

However, the bikini was not overly kind to women with figures that were not petite or at least very firm. Gidget could pull it off, but May West looked just fine in a one-piece swimsuit thank you very much! Fuller figured women were pretty much left out of the �Bikini Beach Blanket Bingo� party. This was just fine with most plus size women and even many smaller women since not everyone wants to be exposing that much skin in public.

There are many great plus size one-piece swimsuit styles to choose from so not much was lost fashion-wise. However, there is one very appealing aspect of the bikini that women of all shapes and sizes can really appreciate � it�s much easier to use the toilet while wearing a bikini than a one-piece swimsuit. This of course has absolutely nothing to do with fashion or style, but is one of those comfort features that makes a big difference!

The tankini swimsuit has not been around all that long and it was not originally developed solely as a plus size swimsuit style. The tankini is an extremely versatile swimsuit that can be adapted to women with either long or short torsos.

The basis of any tankini is the tank style top. There are also halter style variations to the tankini top. The length of the tankini top can vary quite a bit depending on what you�re trying to conceal or minimize. Women with longer torsos will probably go with a shorter top. A shorter top will also reveal more of the midsection like a traditional bikini. Just be aware that a shorter top may potentially reveal a midsection bulge.

Most plus size women choose to go with a longer top that reaches to the top of the hips. This achieves the same effect as wearing a long, untucked shirt, but gives the impression of a snuggly fitted one-piece swimsuit.

The bottoms of tankinis have even more variety than the tops. They can range from tight fitting bikini type bottoms to a swim skirt type bottom. Tankinis with skirt bottoms have more of a tennis outfit look and can even be worn for other activities besides sunbathing along the beach or by the pool. Tankinis with a skirt bottom have now become known as skirtinis.

There are several other variations of the tankini. One of these variations is the ruched tankini, which has a finely ruffled top that can be rolled up or down to vary its length. There are also skirt style tankinis that cleverly allow you to adjust the length of the skirt by discretely pulling up or down on cords dangling from the side. Yet another tankini variation is the camikini that provides more bra support for women who are bigger up top.

When you combine the incredible range of patterns, colors, styles, and variations of plus size tankinis, the selection becomes almost limitless. Tankinis combine true comfort with figure flattering styling that make them the first choice in plus size swimwear today.

About the author:

See examples of how a Plus Size Tankini can make all the difference on the beach or at the pool! Learn more about quality plus size womens clothing at http://www.newplussize.com -- fashion tips, plus size store reviews, and articles.

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