Fitting In ~ Busty & The Beach: Curvy Kate Luau Love

The biggest swimsuit surprise for me this year was Curvy Kate.

I haven’t had luck with Curvy Kate bras in the past, having found them too open in top of the cup for my shape. But this bikini is changing my opinion of Curvy Kate. I requested the Luau Love in Flamingo with high waist bottoms. Like Darlene and Leah, what I wanted wasn’t available and I’m thrilled with what they sent instead:  Luau Love balconnette top and bikini bottoms in black.

Curvy Kate Luau Love Black Bikini

Curvy Kate Luau Love Black Bikini

This suit was generously provided for review, opinions are my own.  The Luau Love has a three-part foam lined cup for support with underwire and side stabilizer boning in the wing. On the outside where this side stabilizer is located, the outer fabric connects with gathers and in such a way that the underwires are not prominent. Two buttons accentuate the gore. The cups are tall and deep and the gore tacks perfectly on me. The straps are thin. If they were necessary to provide actual support, they might dig into my shoulders uncomfortably. But in this balconette style top, I’m getting so much support out of the band, I think I only need the shoulder straps to keep the cups from falling too far forward. Speaking of support – the wings aren’t all that tall . . . it’s coming from the foam cups and boning in the sides.

Luau Love top in 36HH.  These are  some deep cups!

Luau Love top in 36HH. These are some deep cups!

 

Not as much wing-height compared to Panache.

Not as much wing-height compared to Panache Eadie.

 

 

All the support is from foam cups, underwire and side boning.

All the support is from foam cups, underwire and side boning.

I love the high-waisted look that seems to be more in style these days, and I think that style bottoms often work better for my size and shape. I followed an interesting exchange the other day about the sudden prevalence of higher waist bottoms in plus-size bikinis and what that was all about.  As someone who just didn’t bother buying a swimsuit for her entire 20’s and 30’s, I don’t think I can contain my delight that the discussion is even happening about a particular style especially for women who need, want and deserve a plus-sized swimsuit.

For this particular review, however, they sent me the mini fold-over briefs instead of the high-waist style. These aren’t skimpy or uncomfortable, and truth be told, the love of my life prefers these over the higher waist bottoms I tend to select. This is a compromise I’m happy to make as these are comfortable and they stay up without any problems. These are UK 18 / US 2XL.

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Taking a cue from other reviews, I sized up in the cups to an HH. Other reviewers also recommend going up in the band size to minimize back fat. That’s never one of my concerns as I’m mainly interested in support.  And frankly, I have so much fat in front of me in my breasts, belly and chin, that it’s easy to just forget that there is also some on my back.  So this is me in a 36HH.  I’m tempted to try a deeper cup, as I still have plenty of boob outside of the cup.  I’m thrilled that Curvy Kate makes up to a K cup.  As tough as it can be to find swimwear in an H or HH cup, beyond where many other manufacturers top out, I’m not the largest of ladies who need swimwear.  So yay for Curvy Kate!  This particular line has bikini and tankini styles as large as 40K.

36HH cup.  Could I go even deeper?

36HH cup. Could I go even deeper?

As I’ve told you before, my typical use for a bikini is as a bra under strappy summer dresses. A good amount of bra or bikini top is going to stick out above the fabric and be on display.  I put the CK Luau Love to the test earlier this month when The Fabulous Greaseband kicked off the summer music series at a local winery. Each year, they start their set with Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl” which sends me straight to the dancefloor. They then play pop-hits and rock and roll for the next couple of hours and it’s non-stop dancing and singing along under the stars. The Curvy Kate held up for all the dancing underneath my favorite Lee Lee’s Valise Maxi Dress. However, at the end of the night, it was a relief to take it off. The boning in the wings, while necessary, becomes uncomfortable after several hours.  A taller wing like the Panache Eadie would make all the difference.

Dancing @ CrossingVineyards summer music series kick-off

Dancing in my favorite Maxi Dress!