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27 Ways to Look Chic at the Beach

You may not relish the idea of shopping for a swimsuit, but once summer rolls around, you'll want to consider an invitation to a pool party or a weekend at a friend's beach house without breaking into a sweat. Our advice? Find one suit that fits your shape—something stylish, supportive and slimming—and then use accessories to complete the look. Still not sure? That's what a cover-up is for

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Strap Happy

Because one size rarely fits all, the straps are adjustable. The higher cut will give the illusion of endless stems; smooth seams stay put and don't bunch. And the navy center swath will visually trim your middle; thanks to molded cups, you won't runneth over.


Tory Burch color-blocked swimsuit, $225; toryburch.com

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Retro Shades

The modified wayfarer shape is classic; the white tortoise frame looks new.


Kamalikulture sunglasses, $98; kamalikulture.com

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Flat Frenzy

Perfect for navigating the rocky beaches of Nice...or a boardwalk near you.


Martha Rey for the La Boheme espadrilles with recycled fibers, $195; shop.thelaboheme.com

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Color-Blocked Tank

A classic-shaped swimsuit in a sophisticated palette offers grownup glam. The sturdy fabric and timeless style are worth the investment. The bright pop accents your, ahem, assets.

 

Araks polyester and elastane swimsuit, $350; everythingbutwater.com

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Shades in the Round

Sometimes bigger is in fact better.


Chilli Beans handcrafted sunglasses, $85; shop.chilibeans.com

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Statement Bag

The woven plastic will stand up to water, sun and sand.


Mexican Bazaar printed mesh bag, $30; shoplatitude.com

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Kicky Coverage

Great over a suit, great with a tee and metallic flats.

 

Figue silk crepe de chine pants, $195; figue.com

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Caftan-stic

Superthin cotton beats the heat, but it's the style index here that's off the charts. The necklace can you yours without a trip to a far-flung bazaar.


Two cotton caftan, $360; twonewyork.com


Fern Finds for HSN beaded necklace with lobster clasp, $70; hsn.com

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Hat Trick

For sun protection, a bad hair day or both.


BCBG raffia and paper fedora, $38; bcbg.com

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Shiny Sandals

So much better than rubber flip-flops, right?


Nine West leather sandals, $69; zappos.com

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Top Tunic

Tassel edging allows this to go from day to evening.


Tory Burch tunic, $295; toryburch.com

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A Better Bikini

A retro vibe and full coverage make this pretty suit chic and wearable. A two-piece that doesn't bare all—it's not a mirage! Plenty of support and coverage up top, with removable padded inserts.

 

Lands' End bikini top, $85, and bikini bottom, $55; landsend.com

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Arm Party

No need to beach-comb when you have this: the look of a wrist stack in one easy closure.


Hipanema beaded bracelet with good-luck charm of Bahia, $58; hipanemausa.com

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Fancy Feet

The rope-soled wonder gets an upgrade with crochet and embellishment.


Tory Burch espadrilles, $195; toryburch.com

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Squint Patrol

No more (pause for a yawn) black sunglasses.


Sundway Somewhere sunglasses, $260; shopbop.com

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Tote Smarts

Schlep with a soothing sunset color scheme and relax on a dazzling plush towel.


Cappelli Straworld toyo bag, $27; 800-367-3626


Roberta Roller Rabbit cotton and terry cloth beach towel, $150; robertarollerrabbit.com

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Gam Alert

Got great legs? Let's see 'em.


Kate Spade Saturday high-waisted shorts, $90; saturday.com

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Fantasy Frock

In case you're not visiting Capri this summer, you can channel it here. The full skirt is forgiving; the print will hide wet marks from your swimsuit. The necklace is a super-fun splurge.


Boden cotton dress; $148; bodenusa.com


Tory Burch chain necklace with beads, stones and crystals, $395; toryburch.com

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The Perfect LBS (Little Black Suit)

Fab fit and an edgy, modified halter—as supportive as it is pretty. Just add water.


Kamalikulture nylon and Lycra swimsuit, $66; kamalikulture.com

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Sassy Sunnies

The cat-eye shape, gorgeously gilded. Take that, crow's-feet.

 

Chilli Beans sunglasses, $85; 323-653-0067.

Glazed Carry-All

Dense, sparkly sequins make this a stunner.


Figue straw and sequin tote, $125; 212-380-7970

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Wrist Rights

Finish the look but leave the family jewels at home.

 

Vince Camuto leather bracelet, $48; vincecamuto.com

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Fancy Pants

Pajama styling in graphic wear-with-all black and white.


Peter Som for Designation pants, $54; Kohl's

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Happy Feet

Our fashion team fell hard for these glittery espadrilles, and you will, too.


Soludos cotton and jute espadrilles, $48; soludos.com

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Sun Shield

It won't protect your highlights, but it won't give you hat head, either.


Helen Kaminski raffia-braid and leather visor, $145; houpette.com

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Slightly Knotty Add-On

Wear this with your usual bangles and don't stress if it gets wet.

 

Sequence rope bracelet, $48; sequencecollection.com

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Peekaboo Pullover

For those who like to leave little to the imagination.


Tommy Bahama crinkle polyester cover-up, $104; tommybahama.com


Next: This Season's Best Oxford Shirts


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Gisel Flores
First published in the June 2014 issue

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