Posted: May 28, 2012 8:00 AM
Pre-kids, I thought I hated bathing suit shopping. Post-kids, I know how good I really had it. Even moms who bounce back to a beach-ready bod with no problem have to deal with kids in the pool -- which means adjustable triangle tops probably aren’t the best choice.

True story: While swimming with my 16-month-old daughter, her foot got caught in my tube top and down it went. Awesome.

So whether you're trying to accentuate your mom body or just find a practical yet pretty piece of swimwear that lets you roughhouse with the kids, here are our top picks for this summer. We've got a splurge and save, but in truth, the splurges are affordable when you consider their price over the entire lifetime of the suit (Like how I justify that one? It doesn't work so well on my husband!). And they're not that bad to begin with.

Practical and pretty

When you're in and out of the water chasing after little ones, it's important to find a suit that's going to stay put, keeping both the top and bottom halves covered and comfortable! Avoid those teeny bopper triangle tops -- one quick grab from a kid's hand and it's all out in the open. Look for sporty tops and straps.


Price: $153

Diane One Piece by 1Sol

Diane one piece by 1Sol


Price: $30

Old Navy Monokini

Old Navy monokini

The cut out keeps this one piece sexy, while the ruched torso conceals a less-than-perfect tummy.

Why we love it^

Pin-up worthy details like sweetheart necklines keep us feeling sexy even though we're covered up.

The hourglass silhouette of this suit does exactly that for your figure -- give you some curves without revealing too much.

Why we love it^

The straps are wide enough to be comfortable and secure, but still have cute metal accents.

Tankinis with a twist

As a mom with a nursing baby, I loved my tankini. It was comfortable and gave me coverage, while still making feedings easy. If you want a bit more coverage, look for a bottom with a skirt.


Price: $127

Voda Swim Shirred Tankini

voda tankini

Not going to lie, my favorite part of this tankini is the Envy Push Up top. Two kids later and I'll take anything I can get!

Why we love it^

Side ties on the bikini bottoms allow you to go for a boy short look or gather them in for a sexy, skinny side view.

We love separates! And the bright colors from these Target suits let you mix and match for your own colorblocking style -- all the rage right now.

Why we love it^

A detachable strap lets you get more secure if you need it and allows easy access for nursing moms.

Bikini babes

Even if you're not braving a bikini for every dip, we think it's important to have at least one flattering piece in your drawer for those times when you and someone special actually get to soak on your own!


Price: $130

Becca by Rebecca Virtue Separates

Becca swimsuit

The stripes on this one are close enough to create a busy pattern to the eye, disguising a small bustline or wider hips.

Why we Love it^

The sassy one-shoulder style creates a great curve and provides support for larger chests, while the pattern distracts from small bustlines -- making this swimsuit a perfect pick for everyone!

The keyhole detailing at the center of this top gives a little peekaboo without the dangers of a triangle top.

Why we love It^

An entire suit for $40... yes, please!

More on summer fashion

What to look for when buying a swimsuit
Summer fashion trends
Best swimsuits for your body