I have observed that fascinating species ‘British Woman’ dealing with the sunshine recently, both in her native Britain and as she migrates south to Spain, and after hours gathering data I feel compelled to offer the following.
Sunshine may lift your spirits but it does not do the same for your breasts
I spent many hours people-watching at the British seaside on a scorching day and I can categorically state that the only people who should wear strapless outfits are bridesmaids and supermodels. I understand the desire to avoid tan lines (this blog is too short to venture into the clear illogicality therefore of teaming a normal bra with a strapless top) but the judicious use of SPF50 or a cotton wrap does the job in a much less dangly fashion than going braless.
Likewise, there are underwear solutions available for every type of vest – only the very young or the very flat-chested should ever leave the house sans brassiere. No one wants to see middle-aged melons drifting about, midriff bound, nipples skewiff as they pendulously lumber from side to side. If tempted to embrace ‘commando torso’, first ask yourself ‘if I were a fembot, where would my lasers be pointing?’ If you are simply scoring a path in the pavement a couple of metres in front of your feet – strap those puppies up.
This does not mean, however, that you have to allow yourself to be burned by it. Falling trees crush, but when the cry of ‘TIMBEEEERRRR’ alerts you to the potential danger, you run. Why would anyone want to look like a barber’s pole, red and white stripes recalling an embarrassed zebra? Sunburn is dangerous, uncomfortable and unsightly. For some reason, many treat it as something of an inevitability, despite the links between sunburn and skin cancer being pretty clearly established; seeing sunburned people continuing to expose themselves is, to my eyes, the beach version of the hospital patient wheeling their drip outside so they can have a cigarette.
When they say you can ‘drop two dress sizes in two weeks’ or ‘get bikini ready in a month’ they are probably telling the truth. However, YOU won’t do it. YOU will cheat and make excuses and start tomorrow; even if you do succeed in streamlining yourself you’ll have put it all back on by the end of your holiday, and probably added a bit more too. With that self-knowledge, buy your holiday wardrobe in the size you are, not the size you want to be. Clothes that fit look better than those that don’t – particularly if you are one of the many women who insist on jettisoning your smalls at the first sign of sunshine.
If you don’t believe me; believe Baz Luhrmann -