Summer brings the promise of a good time to most people. With ice-creams and beaches, it is during summer that most people take some downtime to just enjoy. Unfortunately, this doesn’t hold for many women because wearing a bikini or anything short for the first time requires one simple rule – Confidence, which has been clouded by the media for generations.
According to HuffPost, 4 in 5 women have low self-confidence and self-esteem. They don’t feel good about their bodies and that often comes in the way of them having a good time. The same survey pointed out that more than 70% of women cancel plans and stay home if they are not satisfied with the way they look.
This means that if you are a woman, chances are you would have restricted yourself from wearing a bikini, shorts, or dresses this summer because you weren’t happy with the way your body looks. Before we delve into ways this insecurity can be battled, it is important to recognize the root of the problem.
Media’s Standard of The Perfect Body
A vast majority of the blame for creating an impossible body type for women goes to the media. Not only do they consistently use only conventionally beautiful women on their displays, but they also promote the “need” to look like a perfect woman. You must have read countless tips and tricks which teach women how to hide that “extra bulk”, get rid of thigh gaps or get a smaller waist in just 15 days! They make it seem like such natural characteristics of your body make you look unappealing or worse, unattractive to men.
The truth is that beauty and its perception are two different things. While beauty in itself is subjective, its perception is not. We provide the term beautiful and all its adjectives to people, especially women, who fit according to beauty standards. Anyone outside that defined box of beauty is considered the opposite. That is where the problem begins.
Social media has almost completely taken over all of our lives and along with it, it has brought detrimental side effects. Apps like Instagram promote the use of filters that distort natural facial features. They plump up the lips, sharpen the nose, and lift the cheeks. When we click pictures with those filters on, it makes us feel we look better. Thus begins the toxic urge to put only enhanced and edited pictures of ourselves out there.
Many celebrities and influencers are also notorious for airbrushing their photos to the point where their bodies look unreal. But because it is hard to separate reality from façade on social media, the general audience applauds and celebrates such body types, making us believe that only photoshopped bodies can look beautiful.
But that is not true!
5 Ways to Wear A Bikini For The First Time With Confidence
This summer, you shouldn’t have to feel conscious about your body. One clothing piece that is especially hard to wear for women is the bikini. Because of how much skin it shows, bikinis make our bodies most vulnerable to the public eye. However, that doesn’t mean you have to give in to that feeling of intimidation.
- Find A Bikini Type That Makes You Feel Comfortable
The thought of wearing a bikini for the first time out in public can be daunting. But the good news is that like our bodies, bikinis come in all sizes, shapes, and types. And no matter what part of your body you wish to hide, you will find a bikini that caters to that need.
When high-waist was a big trend, many people felt the confidence to wear bikinis because the high waist bottoms helped hide their torsos. If you don’t wish to show a lot of skin, you can find a single-piece swimsuit. If you’re wearing a bikini for the first time, you should find something that makes you feel good about the way you look. You can work your way up after that. After all, the first step is the hardest.
- Don’t Scrutinize Over Every Little Detail
While it is easier said than done, try not to pay too much attention to your body when wearing a bikini. It is important to remember that we can be extremely hard on ourselves. Others won’t look at you the same way you look at yourself. Think about it. Have you ever judged someone else’s body as harshly as you judge yours?
We tend to over-analyze every aspect of our identity. And that only leads to a bad place. If you pick at something with such intense scrutiny, you are bound to find imperfections.
- Embrace Your Body
You can’t compare your body to a Victoria’s Secret Model simply because you aren’t one. They go through extreme diets and workout sessions to look a certain way. Not only that, everyone’s body type is different. It is possible to not attain the model figure even after going to extreme lengths. All your body needs to be is healthy.
Remember that the small scars, bumps, or extra skin that are on your body, are natural. They aren’t ugly or disgusting. Even the prettiest women you know have them, or other aspects of their body they are insecure about. A bikini on your body will look good if you own it.
- Compliment Other Women
This is important because the media pits women against each other. Female friendships have since long been unrepresented in mainstream media because women are supposedly incapable of having any other emotion except for jealousy. And it is not women’s fault that we inherently feel a sense of competition with other women, because of this age-old agenda created by society.
In reality, female friendships are uplifting and supportive. By complementing other women instead of envying them, we will not demonize them in our heads and perhaps grow less insecure.
- Wear It for Yourself
At times, we feel the pressure to do certain things because of external factors. A lot of this is brought on by social media. Before you wear a bikini for the first time, make sure that you are doing it because you want to and not because you feel pressured or want to fit in. You will never feel comfortable wearing or doing something if you don’t want to do it.
Once you’re sure you’re doing it for the right reasons, the rest will fall into place. And even if it doesn’t and wearing a bikini doesn’t come to you easily, remember that you don’t have to impress or prove yourself to anybody. The only opinion that truly matters is yours.
There is no doubt that these five steps are easy on paper but hard to achieve in reality. For centuries, women’s bodies have been scrutinized to the extent that they are judged in some form for everything they wear. Sometimes you’re showing too much skin and asking for attention; other times, you aren’t showing enough and are being uninteresting.
Once we shrug off society’s opinions, it is much easier to get more comfortable with our bodies. If you want to wear a bikini, you don’t need the perfect beach body. You just need a body and a bikini!