Small But Mighty: The Perfect Swimsuits For Petites

Small But Mighty: The Perfect Swimsuits For Petites

For women who are under 5'4", swimsuit shopping can difficult. Swimsuits that look great on taller women can swamp petite women, making their proportions appear out of balance. But solving the petite challenge is not as simple as just finding petite sizes of your favorite suits. The trick is to choose just the right look to enhance your best qualities, while also visually lengthening shorter legs or torso. But don't worry; there is the perfect style for each petite woman, no matter what body type she has. Let's look at just a few of the beautiful options that are available.


One-piece swimsuits are great for elongating a short torso. If most of your height is in your legs, a sleek one-piece suit will balance out your torso. A one-shouldered suit will draw the eye up and over one shoulder for an even longer line. As an added bonus, this look is sophisticated and sexy.

This fun suit by Becca in a fresh white shade has an eye-catching laced shoulder strap. Those laces crisscross over the shoulder and into a deep dive down the back, for a look that is both sporty and sexy. As an added bonus, the open back provides another elongating element from behind.

Here's another one-shouldered look from Becca, this time in a sophisticated plus-size two-piece. The elegant, deep black color and sleek lines of this suit give it an uncluttered elegance.


Vertical stripes are great for giving the optical illusion of a longer line to visually lengthen a torso. But that doesn't mean you're trapped in rigid up-and-down stripes. There are lots of playful patterns that have the same vertical movement to give you the lean length you're looking for.

This suit from Anne Cole has two elements that provide slimming vertical motion: the bold white-on-black color blocking, and a sexy mesh panel down the front. Both draw your eye up and down, to lend a long, lean look.

While the vibrant stripes in this colorful tankini from Becca aren't strictly vertical, they create a pattern that effectively elongates and slims. The high neck top draws out the line of the torso even more, and the open back gives you a sexy flash of skin.


Another great style to provide that long torso line is solid color side panels. This is the same concept with vertical stripes, a visual effect that makes the torso look longer.

The blue and black color blocking on the bottom of this modern one-piece suit from L*Space makes the torso appear long and slender. A plunging neckline adds to the lengthening effect.


If you would like to elongate the look of your neck, then styles that leave your shoulders bare and feature a deeper neckline are an excellent choice. Underwire bikini tops are a great way to get this look, while still providing your bust with the support it needs.

The bright color and fun tassel detail of this InMocean bikini top give you the long, graceful neckline you want. This sexy top also functions as a push-up, giving your bust a gorgeous boost.

For excellent support, along with the breezy feel and look of a bikini top, this feminine floral top from Raisins has it all. The shoulder straps are adjustable too, to keep them in place, so you aren't reaching for slipping straps all day. 


To draw the eye up, giving your body a longer line, try suits with fun details on top. Small framed petites are just the body type to have fun with ruffles and other eye-catching details. 

This bright top from Raisins has a fluttery ruffle to skim your arms and a sexy lace-up front. The halter straps are removable, to give this look even more visual impact. 

For a modern look, the bold stripes on this Anne Cole bikini top give it eye-catching flair. Not only do you get detail to draw eyes up, but it also features lengthening, slimming vertical stripes.


On a small frame, a larger bust can be overwhelming. Swimwear offers little opportunity to balance out a full bust, unlike street clothes. For a more evenly proportioned look, it helps to underemphasize larger chests.

The underwire support on this tankini top from Anne Cole provides comfortable support and a flattering fit. It features shirring and a twist front to provide fun detail. 

For an unexpectedly flattering look try a bikini, like this halter style swim top from Isabella Rose. The thick straps provide support that doesn't cut into your shoulders and they also downplay a larger bust. 


If you want to look like you have more of an hourglass figure, try a two-piece with a supportive top, paired with bottoms with a wide band. This gives the illusion of a narrower waist, for a curvy, feminine look.

The hipster style of these bottoms from Seafolly and the vibrant, exotic print help create a curvy look. A band of horizontal straps on each side gives a sexy flash of skin.

The wide band of these bottoms from Luli Fama make them an excellent balance to any well-structured top. These also have side lacing, threaded through grommets for a fun detail. The higher cut legs help your legs look longer.


For lean petites, a string bikini bottom can be a very flattering look. Not only does it fit your proportions well, but the string tie sides also make it more adjustable to fit tiny frames. 

The beachy hues and delicate lacy edging of this string bikini bottom from Luli Fama make it sweetly sexy. 

For a brighter take on this look, this lettuce-edged bikini bottom from Seafolly has vibrant stripes. The string ties have beads to dangle for a relaxed feel. 

No matter what your size or body type, the right swimwear will make you look and feel beautiful. Petite women don't have to settle for just a few "safe" styles. With a few simple guidelines, you will find a whole world of flattering swimwear. 


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