*This is a guest post written by the lovely Wen from Comics Girls Need Bras. The swimsuit was kindly provided by Panache, but as my big butt prevented it from going past my hips, I decided to gift it to a fellow blogger I admired. Even though Panache was generous to provide us with this swimsuit, all opinions are our own! Many thanks to Wen for the review, she was a darling to jump in and help a damsel in distress.*
As a full-busted woman I’ve struggled for a very longtime trying to find a decent swimsuit that I could wear in any occasion either at the school swimming pool or on the beach. Usually the more simple option is a black or blue wireless swimsuit. The issue with these products is that they contain your breast tissue in a very unnatural way. This could be as uncomfortable as painful because the Lycra flattens your breasts. Even if everything stays in place, the result is rarely elegant because these pieces are basically created for a smaller bust. So when Mette asked me if I would like to review the Panache Portofino swimsuit, I was more than interested! I’ve tried some Panache Sport products and I knew that they usually do a great job hiding the wires of these kind of products to give a smooth look while they still perfectly do the job! However I had never tried any underwired swimsuit and happily, this experience hasn’t been disappointing!
The Design: To be honest when I saw the Panache Portofino swimsuit for the first time on Panache stock pictures I didn’t find it very attractive. It was a simple blue and white swimsuit that I wouldn’t have bought by myself. Then I received the parcel, and the feeling when I put it on was completely different…
First of all, it fits ! This is always a victory when you receive a garment by mail and it fits you well. Second, I LOVE my body in this swimsuit! The design makes me think of the show “The love boat”. It looks perfect for cruise holidays! In my opinion this range has something chic, old-fashioned and I really like its nautical inspiration.
You may have noticed that it seems to be 2 sets of straps: the inner pair is for the invisible “bra” which is hidden inside the bodysuit. That means that the actual straps are not fully adjustable and I have to say that I usually have troubles with half-adjustable straps. In this case, they are quite short and I don’t have to shorten them so much (on these pictures I had forgotten to shorten one of them and I didn’t realise it before I saw the pictures on my laptop). So, the inner bra is basically made like a non padded balconette bra with a good coverage and three-part cup construction.
The ruching in the front seems to make the belly area look more structured. Indeed, the draped fabric paired with the white edge accents at the top of the swimsuit makes it more elegant and flattering. The back also adds a nice finish to this piece with its deep keyhole and its lovely branded gold plate and I was happy to see that the metal finished on the straps are gold too. The plastic closure is easy to use and the « band » feels true to size. I was afraid that it was not “young”enough but finally I’m really happy with the design of this piece. It makes me feel like a really elegant pin-up.
The fit : Mette sent me the Portofino in a 30GG and I would say that it fits me pretty well. However I’d like to try a 30G for comparison. The wires are really wide and sit very low under my inframammary fold. Also the inner cups are a bit too big for my breasts : I had the same impression with Panache Sport bras but as this doesn’t show from the outside, I am not 100% sure if a 30G would fit or not. It is not something I can feel when I wear the swimsuit. It doesn’t bother me, I just notice it when I put it on. So I believe that the bust part of this swimsuit is on the larger side.
One positive thing about the wires placement is that the central gore is very very narrow. This is very good for my close set-breasts and overall, this swimsuit still manages to give me a great support and a natural, yet round shape to my bust. The body is perfect for my usual UK size 10 and it covers everything the right way. The bottom part while providing a great coverage has a nice cut which makes my legs and butt look just fine. I was very surprised to be honest, since I usually think that one-piece swimwears make my legs look shorter and flatten my butt in a weird way.
The only thing that bothers me is that it is not easy to put on. Every time I am afraid to damage it when it passes through my thighs and butt, so the first time I was afraid that it was too small. Fortunately, when I finally put it on properly, the fit is amazing and I don’t have so much to complain about.
Comfort: I think that I am going to wear this piece very often this summer! I love bikinis of course,but wearing a one-piece swimsuit has always given me a sensation of freedom! Let me explain: wearing a properly fitting swimsuit, you can do whatever you want, run, dance, sleep, swim, and while every sensitive part of your body is covered, you are free to move your four limbs! That’s how I feel wearing the Portofino. This piece follows the curves of my body and allows me to move without having to adjust it every now and then.
I think the worst thing I’ve experienced with a swimsuit/bodysuit is when the torso part is too short and makes it uncomfortable because your butt systematically tries to eat it. I didn’t experienced that with the Portofino. The inner bra and lining are made from a very soft mesh and although the crotch is slightly too wide for my body, the legs elastics are quite stretchy and I don’t feel any discomfort.
In a nutshell, I am very satisfied with this piece and I think the whole Portofino range can work, aesthetically-wise, for gals of a different ages, since it is very elegant and pretty! If I could put my hands on the bandeau swim top in my size I’ll be glad to give it a try ! The details of this range are freaking amazing ! If you would like to give the Portofino a try, you can find it on Figleaves for $78 and the size range for the product is 30-38 D-K.