Hands up if you’re planning your winter swimming clothes. If you’re going swimming during winter, what you wear before, during and after your cold swimming session will make a huge difference to your confidence, comfort and recovery. We're talking warmer fabrics, snug layers and thicker material.
That’s where we can help. We asked our resident ice swimming expert whose coached people through winter for the past five years about what she recommends for your winter swimming kit bag.
Your starting point for winter swimming is deciding whether or not you’re going to wear a wetsuit. “Wetsuits provide a layer of protection from the cold – for some people, this is the difference between getting in the icy water or not,” says coach and ice swimmer, Rowan. “You don’t need a wetsuit – lots of people find them a faff to get on and off in winter – but you still get all the mental and physical health benefits if you wear one. It really comes down to faff versus comfort.”
If you are going to wear a wetsuit, it’s really important that you choose a swimsuit that’s smooth, seamless and comfortable underneath to avoid chafing. And if you go without a wetsuit, it’s not cheating if you go for something made from warmer fabric than the average swimsuit.
“I really recommend a swimsuit made of more durable, thicker fabric,” says Rowan. “You want something comfortable and supportive – and a bit of extra warmth, especially around your torso, can only be a good thing. As well as your swimsuit, make sure you wear a hat, and neoprene gloves and booties can be a game-changer in cold water too. If you swim with your face in the water, don't forget your goggles and earplugs too."
What you wear after your swim is almost more important for a good recovery. “I cannot stress enough how seriously you should take warming up after a winter swim,” says Rowan. “Your core body temperature carries on dropping once you get out of the water, so those first few minutes where you strip off your wet stuff and layer up with warm, weather-protective layers will stop you from getting too cold.”
This is when you put on your bobble hat, gloves, thermal layers and windproof, waterproof outer layer such as a coat or changing robe to protect you from the elements. “You should also pack yourself a warm drink – tea, coffee, herbal tea, hot chocolate – anything that warms you from the inside. Lots of swimmers also have a hot water bottle and hand warmers, plus something to eat – usually cake – to get your digestive system going.”
We've put together our Autumn Essentials collection to help you choose the best swimwear for your winter swimming adventures.
The Essential Tankini
Made of thick, bonded fabric, The Essential Tankini has all the tummy-hugging warmth of a swimsuit with the convenience of a two-piece. It’s so tailored and beautifully supportive that you can wear it under your clothes before your swim to make changing easier – just don’t forget to pack your undies for afterwards! Available as the gorgeous Essential Swimsuit too.
Best for:Easy changing before and after your cold swim.
Top tip:Match with the reversible Swim Shorts for extra coverage on your bottom half.
The Signature Swimsuit
The thick, bonded fabric is extra warm and incredibly supportive. Our customers love the way The Signature Swimsuit’s clever tailoring offers non-wired bust support and the mesh panels not only add a bit of glamour, but they also make the swimsuit easier to pull off with cold hands.
Best for:Great bust support and extra confidence.
Top tip:Try The Signature Swimsuit on at home before its first outing – it gives a bit after the first try so it’ll be easier to get on and off at the water’s edge.
The Long Sleeve Swimsuit
For that little bit of extra protection, The Long Sleeve Swimsuitis the perfect choice. It’s made from two layers of four-way stretch fabric, making it super-smooth and soft. But it’s the full-length mesh sleeves that give you that extra coverage. If you’re out in the elements where there’s air and wind chill, such as winter sea swimming, you’ll be very grateful for those sleeves.
Best for:A warm, supported body and extra coverage on your arms.
Top tip:Pair with The Swim Shorts and it’s almostlike you’re wearing a wetsuit.
From October 1st to October 22nd, you can get 20% off our winter swimming essentials using the code AUTUMNESSENTIALS.
We've developed our unique Muse Measurement sizing system to offer a comfortable, sleek and sculpting fit, whatever your shape or size.
We know that no two “size 12” bodies are the same, so our sizing is tailored to three different body shapes:
Step One: Pick your usual UK dress size from 8-20.
Step Two: Pick your bust size based on our Muse Measurements system:
|BRA CUP SIZE||AA - B||C - E||F - HH|
So if you typically wear a UK size 14 and wear a 34A bra, you’d order a 14 Hepburn. Likewise if you’re a UK size 10 and wear a 30F bra, you’d order a 10 Hendricks.
All our pieces are designed to offer stretch. However, if you’re in between sizes we recommend sizing up.
If you are very long in the body, we also recommend going up a dress size to offer additional length.
Our Swimbras & Swim Crops are designed to fit snugly so that you feel 100% secure as you move. We have developed a precise Bikini Sizing System to help you identify your correct size.
|BIKINI TOP SIZING||Cup Size|
Band Size (inches)
|26-28||8 Hepburn||8 Monroe||8 Hendricks|
|28-30||10 Hepburn||10 Monroe||10 Hendricks|
|30-32||12 Hepburn||12 Monroe||12 Hendricks|
|34-36||14 Hepburn||14 Monroe||14 Hendricks|
|38-40||16 Hepburn||16 Monroe||16 Hendricks|
|42-44||18 Hepburn||18 Monroe||18 Hendricks|
All our knickers come in standard UK dress sizes from size 8 - 18.
We currently offer all bikinis in sizes 8-18 and all swimsuits in sizes 8-20.
We are very aware that our size range is still relatively limited. We’re a small independent brand, and have focused initially on offering a highly comprehensive and effective set of products to women who wear dress sizes 8-20.
However we are very responsive to demand. If you would like to see more sizes in different types of products please get in touch at email@example.com - we'd love to hear from you.
For example, when we first launched back in June 2017 we tested customer demand for our products in sizes 8-16. So many of you got in touch to say that you were interested in our swimwear but needed larger sizes that within six months we expanded our size range up to UK size 20. We're really listening to you.
Any questions or want to check your size in more detail? Get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org.