Bikini Mountain

So, when I started do this whole thing where once a year I put on a bathing suit and go in public, I thought, yes. This feels brave. This feels strong. And it was, until one day it wasn’t.

It doesn’t necessarily feel less strong or less brave, it just feels… normal. Which is amazing.

I’m a woman, I wear a swimsuit, I climbed the mountain. Rooooaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

But the thing is, I get bored easy, and mountain climbing… it’s addictive.

I needed a new mountain. Not necessarily for you, even though you’re all very lovely. This mountain was mostly for me. A bikini.

Now, this was a serious mountain, y’all. It had cliffs and caverns and stretch marks and gall bladder surgery scars and love handles and saggy parts and a belly button that was so totally lower than I remember it being before. Oh, and a stupid amount of cellulite.

But it turns out, putting on a bikini was so much harder than just, well, putting on a bikini. I had been so focused on the actual act, I never even considered the difficulty in finding one that fit. There is so much to consider, especially with a curvy body. I need a bottom that came up high enough to hide my pouch, and a top big and supportive enough to handle my 38DDDs. That made for slim pickings. Also, I’m not, like, 16 years old, so there’s that, also.

So I took to the internet, because heaven forbid us plus size gals need to try anything on in a store, and ordered an absolutely obscene amount of bikinis. Ironically, most of them ended up being quite obscene themselves, and the majority of them went back, but that’s the thing with any shopping experience. I easily had 42 breakdowns on my bedroom floor, but I took another shot of tequila and got back on the horse, because if I had just given up, I never would have found two looks that make me feel crazy swim suit confident and positively gorgeous.

Plus Size Bikini

I love this suit. Not only am I still totally crushing on all things navy, I really like to mix up patterns. This top made me nervous, because halters don’t typically work for me, causing neck pain and 24/7 back fat parties, but the double strap ties were super comfortable, and the thicker sides made things way smoother and supported. The bottoms are way lower than I assumed I would have liked. I am so used to jacking things up super high on my stomach, camel toe be damned, because it felt held in and secure. But, when it comes to swim wear, doing that makes this weird shelf above my butt, which is the opposite of appealing. So I tried a mid rise bottom, and I think it created a really great hourglass shape. I have hips and thick thighs and an ass, you know, girl stuff, and I might as well get to know them.
Beach Living V-Neck Top, Deep Sea Floral size 14, Lands’ End $49
Beach Living Mid Rise Bottom, Deep Sea size 16, Lands’ End $24

Plus Size Bikini

This cover-up felt very Jackie O to me, and at the time I ordered it, I was still reeling from the Taylor Swift/Conor Kennedy split, so I had to have it. It’s so flattering, easy to toss over the bikini top when you get chilled, and you can even swim in it. Horizontal stripes and a two piece? I think that’s one big fuck you to the rules of plus size dressing, don’t ya think?
Stripe Crewneck Swim Tee, Deep Sea Stripe size XL(18), Lands’ End $39

Plus Size Bikini

At first, this suit terrified me. Like, terrified. The strings and the youth and the oh my God, right? My boobs basically took one look at it and cackled all, girrrrl, I hope you like your nipples touching your navel, because this shit is about to happen. But you know what? I loved it. I really did. I loved the color, and it was really comfortable, and it legitimately held my boobs up. It’s a little showy, but it’s, like, a bikini? So that’s basically the point. I mean, they’re made for beaches and rap videos.
Ruffle Bikini Top, Purple size XXL, Old Navy $17
Tie Bikini Bottom, Purple size XL, Old Navy $17

Plus Size Bikini

I wanted to include another fun cover-up, and I saw Jennifer Aniston rock this look once, and always wanted to try it. Now, Jennifer Aniston I am not, but I picked up this worn looking denim button-up from Target a few months ago with the intent to wear it with a fun maxi skirt, and gave it ago. Verdict? Fun. Andy’s verdict? Not fit for print.
Women’s Plus Denim Button Up, size 2, Target

To some, this may not be beauty or strength. To some this may be gossiped about or pitied. Maybe even labeled gross or pinned as motivation for what not to be.

To them I say, get your own mountain. This one’s mine.

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Comments

  1. LinzJupiter says

    You look amazing. But isn’t it still March? and you’re in the MidWest somewhere? How the hell are you doing that?

  2. Lou says

    You look FAB. Just what I needed this morning after spending 45 minutes at the gym looking at the supermodel thin woman on the machine in front of me a tripping on self judging. Thank You, very inspirational!

    XXXXXX

  3. Helena OK says

    That is one pretty damn cool mountain you climbed. I have been climbing it too for the last few years, but more as a matter of necessity, because living in Italy and going to the beach in a full swim suit is like death by heat meltdown. I also climbed the try-on-a-bikini-in-a-shop mountain, which was pretty damn hard because the shop woman kept on opening the curtains in front of all the customers to check that I had the right size. But anyway, that’s not the point. The point is that you deserve a whole heap of top-of-the-mountain flags for posting it all on the internet and for being very funny too.

  4. says

    Your confidence and self love is beautiful! You go girl! Your sense of humour is great too – you definitely made me chuckle! Keep spreading your words, you’re inspiring!

  5. Ronnie says

    A bikini on a plus size body that’s hardly what you could call saggy wrinkled old in any way ( which is what is unattractive and time to put away the bikini.) You are young and still firm…taking that picture if you were to lose the weight 25 or 30 years from now when your skin lacks the support of curves of muscle and the weight supporting it….when it’ s lost the collagen and connective tissue and you dare wear anything showing the thinning skin and varicose veins or the scar under your abdomen hip to hip that cut the muscle and left a mishapened blob…that’s not just mountain climbing it’s skydiving.

  6. says

    Brittanyy I think you are gorgeous voluptous woman with pretty feet. You have no reason to be ashamed of anything; you carry your weight well. You also have style, I’ve always admired women that aren’t necessarily what society accepts as sexy, but I think the industry is slowly coming around. You are what the brothers( African Amnerican men) call thick which is a good thing, just make sure you are healthy that’s what’s important.

    • Jenn says

      No to be mean but seriously was this meant to be a compliment or a back handed slap in the face regardless of which race should find Brittney appealing as you say. You seem to be one of those people who like to say all women are not 115 lbs with 38-24-34 measurements for lack of trying. If we dont look like pamela anderson its because we wont ge off the couch right. But the kicker for me was when you told her not to be ashamed at what point did this gorgeous voluptous woman as you say ever say that she was ashamed instead she did what 90% of women would ever do love herself for and be proud for everything god gave her. What society says is acceptable is truly very little of the actual female population. While I never get into this argument even though I have always struggled with weight I feel societies views on almost everything are skewed so I like Brittney hold myself to my standards and not societies. I want to thank you for yes admiring and taking the time to try to give positive feedback to a beautiful women period, not a beautiful but….and for getting me heated enough to take the time I never would have to say to all these women keep doing what you do to help given women and little girls any extra ounce of confidence we ALL need male or female. Thank you Brittney and yes you look amazing.
      P.S. no need to judge me incorrectly I myself would have no problem inserting a picture here if I could because I am beautiful as well and have had to deal with the you are a beautiful “thick” in all the right places way. Just because I myself is small waisted and have a “thick” bottom and legs Brothers has you say seem to want to always talk to me as meat maybe that’s were the “thick word comes from. Regardless it is a degrading way to describe a woman.

    • says

      Hye Jen, I didn’t mean to upset you or offend you or Brittany I was giving a compliment, I didn’t thouroughly read the blog so that’s why I used the word ashamed. I apologize, what I was saying is that often when you look at magazine covers or models more curvacious women are not recognized the way they should be not that they are stuck on a couch. When I said thick I wasn’t thinking meat to me it was not skinny, but all women are beautiful in one way or another. I never blog so in the future I’ll be mindful of my choice of words.

      • Big Fan says

        Scott,
        I didn’t read your message as anything but supportive and complimentary. Don’t sweat Jenn’s response and don’t let it discourage you from future posts. Her message was way more judgmental than yours.

    • Shannon B says

      Scott,
      You have absolutely zero, zip, zilch to apologize for, Jenn is clearly not ok in the head, she struggles with more than just her weight but clearly her mental health. Your statement was supportive thoughtful and nothing but positive and this psycho goes all, we’ll psych on you. I was reading Jens response and the whole time I’m thinking, this has to be a mistake she can’t possibly be responding to the same comment I just read, but after she directly quotes you it’s clear she is, which is absolutely insane. Your comment does not have even an ounce of condescension, , passive aggressiveness or a backhanded feel to it AT ALL. You can’t take Jens rant seriously she obviously has some real issues.

      • says

        Thanks Shannon B. You probably are a fine Vuluptous woman yourself , I appreciate your comment; everything was meant as a compliment. This blog has helped lots of women build there self confidence and feel more comfortable in there own skin. Have a wonderful day Ms. B.

        • says

          Hey Brittany, I wonder if you thought that this post would create so much buzz.? You are an inspiration to lots of people you definitely find your calling not just with this one article or topic ; you defintely are gifted.

    • says

      Dude you were speaking your mind and not in an insultive way. Enjoy life and all its beauties. I love women that are 90 to 190. No matter what grace and happiness shines.

  7. Kerry says

    I love your red hair, and no, you don’t look obscenely obese. However, just like me, you could afford to lose some weight. Will you? Probably not. Will I? Not likely…but I’d like to. If when you take pictures you need to put one leg in front of the other to feel attractive in a photo, you have a weight problem. I do the same in mine. It’s to hide the fatty legs.

    I actually lost 17 pounds in a month last year, and before that I lost 32, but I keep gaining it back because I am very poor and convenience foods are way cheaper than fresh ones. I’d love to do the juicing diet but I make less than $17k a year with 3 jobs. One full-time, 2 part.

    None of this is meant as an insult, just an observation from someone who weighs the same as you and knows that as lovely as I may feel in certain clothes at certain times, I would feel much better not having to contort myself in photos to feel lovely.

    • Leigh says

      That is a much more attractive way for anyone to stand no matter their weight. Blaming your weight on being poor is a cop out. You weigh what you want to, regardless of your income.

    • Shannon B says

      Kerry,

      If your making 17k a year with three jobs you need to contact the dept of labor, because your being paid less than the minimum wage. Minimum wage should get you about 15k a year with ONE full time job. Something does not add up on your statement.

  8. Curtis says

    I just want to say that you are beautiful! I am one that loves a woman with confidence and a beautiful body to boot. If there is ever anyone who tells you that you are not perfect the way you look, they are jealous that they don’t have someone who thinks the same about them. When I look at your pics, I see a woman with a love for her curves and the willingness to flash her hotness. Beautiful lady…you keep holding your own and I will keep looking for any new pics, because you are too beautiful for me not to look at!

  9. says

    I admire your . . . yeah, it’s bravery. It SHOULDN’T be, it should just be someone deciding to wear what they want and that’s that, but we know it’s more than that. I have battled my weight since childhood, I have starved myself to a loose size 1 and despised myself at a tight 3X. Hundreds of pounds gone, come back, gone again, and again returned. And I have never, ever loved myself.

    I admire you.

    • Jessica says

      Seriously, you have the exact same body type I do and I have hated my body since the 8th grade. You are my hero and I wish I were as brave as you. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. If only all of us women who look like you would be so confident.

  10. Pam says

    You look great!! I just recently bought a 2 piece granted it is a tankini. Its my first bathing suit purchase in 10+ years. You are inspiring! :)

  11. hope says

    First of all, you look awesome!.. A few years ago I took to wearing bikini’s (only in my yard, and never to the beach tho).. i have always been “plus size”.. Last summer I was probably about 190-200 pounds, and people never believe that number either. Probably because i am 5’9″ pushing 5’10″.. well i’ve gained some weight over the winter, so i’m about 220 now.. I promised myself I’d lose a few before the summer. Either way I will survive and I WILL wear bathing suits without over sized T-Shirts.
    I was curious as to how tall you are?

  12. Holli says

    You look amazing & your a role model to all females! As a plus size (with the plus size breasteses to go with) I’ve found lands end to be particularly supportive! Glad you found the same!

  13. Danielle says

    I CAN’T believe you did this!!! I didn’t know I wanted someone to do this but as soon as I saw it I thought, that is what I have been wanting someone to do for YEARS!!!
    I constantly see women in “before” pictures weighing close to what I weigh and I would think, “I don’t think I look like that. Do I look like that? Have I tricked myself into thinking I look pretty good when in actuality I am a hot mess?”
    I am a very well proportioned plus size girl and NO ONE EVER believes me when I tell them what I weigh.
    All of this is to say, you look amazing! The number on the scale is just a number…but you make 214 look exquisite. Congrats to you!!!

  14. Denise says

    You are beautiful and yes it takes a ….load of courage to bare a bikini bod without
    The tremendous airbrushed photoshopped images that are portrayed in zines.
    Your natural beauty and confidence shine through. For many of us curvy and thick
    Women and girls you are amazing. Keep it up!!!

  15. Dara Albert says

    For what it’s worth, I’m not worried about your health, or the way you stand, or any of the sort of poky, pointed, and kind of rude comments and questions some others have posted. I know beauty when I see it – and I see it. I see a lovely, bold redhead in some very pretty swimwear. Thank you.

  16. Philomena says

    You look gorgeous. I am about the same size and I would never have the courage and self esteem to get into a bikini. You go girl!

  17. says

    It’s all about confidence. Imagine how many girls/women don’t go to the beach, or skip pool parties because of their insecurities. Life goes on. We can’t all be stick thin supermodels. Shope at the Plus Size stores if you have to and feel good about yourself! Thanks for sharing this – and for the links to the bikinis.

  18. DP says

    You have the most beautiful and sexy toes! Saw your other post with you standing on the scale, which is how I found this site. And, you look fabulous in your two-piece suits.

  19. Mandy says

    Brittany, I am in awe. I know so many people have said it, but I so appreciate you being brave enough to do this. You are gorgeous!

    As a curvy girl myself, swimsuit season has been scary for me for a few years now. Your post was encouraging and kind of…liberating!

    Just one question- where did you get the first bikini set?

    Cheers! Mandy

  20. Heather says

    You are so lucky to have such a flat stomach! I inherited a little awkward pooch, even though I’m only a size 8. *le sigh*

  21. artgrrrl says

    OMG you have EXTREME FABULOUS BABITUDE!!
    Your fabulosity has fabulosity.
    Even your obviously old soul has the glorious shine of a new penny,
    and your rambunctious courage, beauty and curvalicousness
    are all helping to SAVE THE WORLD FOR WOMEN AND
    GIRLS……HOLY PETUNIAS: WE GET TO BE EXACTLY HOW
    WE ARE AND STILL BEAUTIFUL? Yes, apparently so.

    Thank you for being yourself and for sharing that with the
    rest of us…keep up the good mountain climbing.

    oo, one more round and lovely cali grrrl

    PS i recently walked through the pupu platter
    of treatment for stage 3 breast cancer and lost my 30 year’s
    worth of long auburn hair to a baby-bun-baldy-locks
    noggin for 18 months . i decided to ROLL with it big time,
    and wore a button that said “chemo: so punk rock” the first
    time i had to go out in public severely and totally bald…not
    follicle shimmer, even, i was so scared i cried. i prayed that
    morning that the world would mirror back to me my beauty,
    everywhere i went, and the resulting experience was truly
    remarkable. all through my bald and bold months, complete
    strangers would come up to me and volunteer how pretty i
    looked. OMG!!! it was an extraordinary experience to FIND
    MY OWN deep sense of my own beauty—-at exactly the time
    that NONE of my “american social norm of beauty standards
    for women” boxes could be checked off: wasn’t 20; wasn’t a
    size 5 with a 9 inch wide ass; wasn’t maned by long gorgeous
    hair……AND APPARENTLY WAS STILL BEAUTIFUL AS HELL.
    i pass this along to ALL of us in ALL our various shapes and sizes
    and incarnations of health and fitness…oh, and, for those interested
    in extra points today, google “PRETTY” on youtube: the remarkable
    slam poem of one righteously pissed off brilliant babe staking her
    claim at the top of this courage mountain we’re all gazing towards
    the horizon from.
    :-)

    • Dara Albert says

      What an awesome comment post, artgrrrl, especially “HOLY PETUNIAS: WE GET TO BE EXACTLY HOW WE ARE AND STILL BEAUTIFUL? Yes, apparently so.” and this: “it was an extraordinary experience to FIND MY OWN deep sense of my own beauty—-at exactly the time that NONE of my ‘american social norm of beauty standards or women’ boxes could be checked off”. As a curvy woman living with a disability and reclaiming my own feminine, beautiful identity despite the persistently narrow cultural definition of same, I salute you as well as Brittany. In my perfect imaginary neighborhood coffee shop, the three of us are having a lovely chat, and being fabulous, and encouraging and holding one another up, as women are meant to do. Thank you both.

  22. Robin says

    You look amazing and your belly is so flat! Color me jealous. After two kids, my belly looks like a messy pile of unrisen bread dough.

  23. michelle morris says

    You look amazing! This is what REAL women look like! Good for you for posting this! What an inspiration!

  24. says

    AMAZING! I’ve never in my life been thin and never thought I could wear a bikini…and I’m still not quite sure I can, but you look fabulous and you are definitely an inspiration that says otherwise. My mountain is currently getting back in shape for roller derby and after I climb that one who knows where I might end up :) You’re awesome!!

  25. says

    I’m a 38DDD; a post baby gift (Yet I thought breastfeeding made them smaller. #pregnancylies j/k) *sigh* Lol! But this post changed my life and perception of climbing that mountain. I bought this amazing one piece, where the D^3′s were like heyyyyyyyy girl! It totally made me nervous but I thought, look I have them what the heck else am I suppose to wear to the beach, a sweater? Lol! So I bought it and I rock it and I love it. But again it wasn’t a bikini because in my mind mommies with like real bodies don’t wear bikinis. But you have given mothers everywhere a new leap of confidence. I’m 175 lbs and your HuffPost Parents article inspired me as well because again post baby I acquired a lot of “stuff” that I never had like EVER. My nickname was “sticks” for like the majority of my life so imagine my talks with myself now. LOL! I tell my friends all the time I have NO idea what to do with this *points to breasts and thighs* This was awesome! I’m proud of you! From one momma to another ROCK on girl! *muah* #nomakeup

  26. Cheryl says

    You’re inspiring!! Thank you! You gave me the confidence to talk on FB about my ongoing struggle with being happy in my own body no matter what size. Thank you, thank you for being the strong you!

  27. Danielle says

    You are so beautiful. Love the first suit… the second one is amazing too! Your blog puts a smile on my face. Thanks!

  28. Kristine Tolman says

    Wow…just wow! I wear a little necklace that says “fearlessness” on it and I have done some fearless things, like moving to Cairo, Egypt 18 mos ago to take a teaching job. But this is truly great. You look awesome! I’m 48 and don’t know that I’m confident enough to ever do this. I’ve struggled with body image and weight since, well, forever. I’ve had boobs and thighs since I was 14 but just started getting tummy after turning 40. Anyway, this just made me evening.

  29. Jo says

    You look amazing. Seriously- totally inspirational and I would pretty much kill to have your boobs, hair, and tummy to go with my “thick” half if you know what I’m saying….

  30. says

    “Made for beaches and rap videos.” Too humorous. Good post. Keep it going girl, you rock! Love the stripes top. Breaking the rules is sometimes what its all about.

  31. says

    I didn’t even think to leave a comment on how ‘you should be proud of your curves’, blah, blah, blah – all that went through my head when I saw your pics was, ‘Man – that’s a great rack!’

    And I’m a woman.
    And straight.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] out my underarm stubble. No need to get that gritty. But after one of my top ten bloggers posted bikini pictures of herself at a size 14/16, I felt like I should not be ashamed to define the term [...]

  2. [...] It took me a long time to see past the weight to the self-confidence in others. I’m still doing it for myself, which is why I admire women that the world mocks. I don’t have that courage to buck the rules society sets for us, but I admire those who do, from the nameless woman in that Facebook photo to the tremendously awesome Brittany of the Brittany, Herself blog, who made international headlines when her bikini post went viral. [...]

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