Monday, 25 June 2012

Poolside glamour in the By Caprice 'Colby Hearts' bikini

   By Caprice is a brand that I have written about before in my reviews of the 'Audrey' and 'Kitty' lingerie sets, but never before have I tried the swimwear. Since the brand's launch in 2006, By Caprice lingerie and swimwear has picked up fans in the form of Imogen Thomas and TOWIE's Maria Fowler and Amy Childs to name a few.

   As a former glamour model, it may come as no surprise that Caprice's Swimwear is equally as sexy as her Lingerie collections. The Spring/ Summer 2012 Swimwear collection is no exception, with an abundance of  glam padded triangle bikinis, moulded push-ups, cut-out swimsuits and skimpy tie-side bottoms in black, metallic tones and vibrant blue, along with ruching, polka dot, stud, floral and ruffle details. 

   By Caprice's padded triangle bikinis have proved to be a particularly popular design for many years now and have been brought out in a range of patterns. I recently spotted a very cute pink and black heart print bikini from By Caprice on lingerie and swimwear e-tailer, Lingerie Please. Lingerie Please offer some very cute bra sized bikinis, so I was delighted when they sent me the By Caprice 'Colby Hearts' bikini to try.. 

  By Caprice 'Colby Hearts' moulded bikini 
(Top: £23 and briefs: £15)

   As I have mentioned before, buying non-cup sized swimwear tends to be a 'no-goer' as I have to mix and match tops and bottoms to account for my bust, meaning that good support is pretty well out of the equation! Although the 'Colby Hearts' bikini does not come in bra sizes, the sizing works using a UK dress size and dual cup size e.g. Size 8-18, with cup sizes B/C, D/DD and E/F. 

   Although I generally wear 28 back bras, I decided to go for the 10 E/F in this bikini as I thought that the 8 E/F may come out rather like a By Caprice size 30 E/F, which would have been too small. (I wear a 30FF in By Caprice lingerie) I also went for a size 12 in the low rise bikini briefs as I have noticed that By Caprice briefs tend to run small due to their skimpier cut.

   It could probably be argued that this sizing system is a little confusing as dress size and band size do not necessarily (and often don't!) correlate. Before you get worried, luckily back size is not too much of an issue with this bikini because it has tie backs, which is great as you can tie the straps as tight or loose as you wish!

   The 'Colby Hearts' bikini top is a black moulded triangle style covered in ultra girlie hearts in bubble gum and lipstick pink. The bright dual tone hearts really stand out against the black base colour, giving this bikini a bit of a colour 'pop'. The low rise bikini briefs have an identical heart pattern and also feature an elasticated black waistband for comfort.

   I was glad that I went for the 10 E/F in the bikini top, as I definitely wouldn't have fit into the cups of the 8 E/F! The cut of the 'Colby Hearts' is much more revealing than most of the bikinis that I own, but boy oh boy does this bikini give you an impressive cleavage! Like the By Caprice bras that I have tried, the 'Colby Hearts' bikini also boasts hidden graduated padding on the inside of the cups.. 

   As you can see from the picture, the padding is quite significant and I definitely got a cleavage to rival a glamour model's in this number! This look may not be everyone's cup of tea (especially if you have a large bust already), but I'd recommend it to those who want to boost their bust on the beach, whilst melting a few ice creams (and hearts) whilst they're at it! 

   I was also glad that I went for a size 12 in the matching briefs as they do come up smaller and skimpier than some of the other bikini bottoms that I own. It is worth sizing up in these low rise briefs if you don't want to show too much derriรจre.. 

   The By Caprice 'Colby Hearts' bikini is a very flirty and glamorous bikini that will boost your assets and your confidence in equal measure. It's worth mentioning that this bikini is more of a 'lounging' and 'posing' bikini and wouldn't be ideally suited to high levels of activity (unless you want to give onlookers an eyeful!)

   It does look great on, however, and I can imagine this bikini drawing many an admiring look on the beach or by the pool! If you're looking for a sexy bikini with 'wow factor', the 'Colby Hearts' has definitely got it. 

   You can see more of Lingerie Please's range of bikinis on their site. There is currently FREE postage for a limited time, with quick dispatches and speedy postage!

Roll on Summer holidays!

Kitty xo

Monday, 18 June 2012

Sculpting swimwear: Speedo Sculpture at the Vitality show

   A little while ago I was invited to the Vitality Show, which is one of the biggest health, beauty, fitness and wellbeing events for UK women. Taking place at Earl’s Court, the show is a great opportunity to see the latest trends in healthy living, sample new beauty products, grab a beauty bargain, taste new healthy foods, pick up cooking tips from the chef kitchen tutorials or grab a massage or manicure!

   Amongst the plethora of brands and products on show, one brand that particularly stood out from the crowd was Speedo Sculpture! Speedo has been a swimwear market leader for many years now and has easily become one of the most well-loved brands amongst amateurs and Olympic professionals alike. Speedo is also proud to uphold high ethical and environmental standards, which are reinforced by its sourcing process and in the eco-conscious production work with fabric company, Eurojersey.

   The success of the Speedo brand lies in their passion for quality and fit, coupled with a relentless desire for innovation. Speedo garments use Xtra Life LYCRA®, which ensures comfort and durability, as well as resistance against chlorine, lotions and the sun (all of which can cause fabric degradation). Xtra Life LYCRA® is also geared for skin breathability and sun protection (due to the use of super-opaque microfibres) and is also very quick-drying. 

   Speedo Sculpture is the new body shaping swimwear range that has been designed using an “exclusive body sculpting technology [that] slims and shapes your body to flatter and enhance its natural curves.” Speedo Sculpture offers two ranges that target two common issues to the fit of standard swimwear products: the “Tummy Control Range” and the “Cup Sized Range”

The Tummy Control Range

   This range is ideal for women looking for a swimsuit with body shaping properties that will flatter curves and give control to the stomach area in particular. Speedo Sculpture's use of Xtra Life LYCRA® has strong fabric strength, meaning that you can expect great fit and shape with none of that unsightly ‘bagging’ or ‘fabric sagging’ that can affect swimming performance (and your overall pool look!)

   Aside from the benefits of the fabric, the swimsuit designs are carefully developed to flatter and streamline your body (e.g. thanks to carefully positioned coloured panels). The range incorporates classic and unfussy designs alongside fashion colours and prints (which are ideal for those wanting something a bit more trendy and fun for the pool..)

(Women's Premiere Sculpt Swimsuit)

(Women's Premiere Sculpt Swimsuit)

(Women's Aqua Deluxe Swimsuit)

(Women's Aqua Grace Swimsuit)

(Women's Premiere Flowactive Swimsuit)

(Purity Legsuit)

(Aqua Grace Print Swimsuit)

(Premiere Classic 1 Piece)

The Cup Sized Range

   Although the cup sized collection was not on show on the day, it is a range that is certainly causing waves. Many women with a bust struggle to find swimsuits that fit well and offer a high level of support, so this range is definitely exciting news!

   The "Cup sized" range is available from a 30 band up to a 38 band, in cup sizes B-GG and up to an H cup in backs 30-36! This is really good news for larger busted ladies, who can really benefit from the support that these underwire cupped swimsuits offer. Moreover, these swimsuits also boast tummy control and a scooped neckline to flatter curves - you'll both look and feel fantastic.

Women's Premiere Underwired Swimsuit (above) 

This classic-cut swimsuit is available from cup sizes B-H and boasts integral underwired cups, tummy control and a subtle scooped neckline. This swimsuit comes in classic black with a pop of purple or vibrant blue with an aqua contrast. I really like the edging on the neckline and under the bust as it looks very flattering to curves.

Women's luxe style swimsuit:

This swimsuit features integral bra cups (B-H) and tummy support for an overall sleek look. The crossover design and V shaped neckline will flatter your bust too. Classic black is reknowned for looking great on everyone and this piece looks very stylish and curve seems that Speedo Sculpture have created the swimming equivalent of the LBD!

More from Speedo

   Aside from the Speedo Sculpture collections, there was also a range of classic Speedo swimsuits on show, updated in new colours and graphic prints for this season...

(Women's Hydrojet Allover Powerback)

(Women's Endurance Plus Divejet Allover Turn Back)

(Women's Powersprint Placement Powerback)

   It was great to see Speedo Sculpture at the Vitality show and I really enjoyed chatting to the lovely team about the new ranges. I love that they are striving to give (and restore) confidence to women of all shapes and sizes through their new "Tummy control" and "Cup sized" ranges.

   The ranges offer comfort, support and style, enabling women to feel good about themselves both in and out of the water. I am especially keen to try out one of the Speedo Sculpture cup sized swimsuits in future. Standard swimsuits tend to flatten the bust and offer minimal support, so a supportive swimsuit would definitely encourage me to take up swimming again!

Find out more about the Speedo Sculpture range and where to buy it here.

Kitty xo

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Affinitas Intimates A/W12 Press Day: Affinitas and Parfait

   If you haven't yet heard of Affinitas Intimates, you're in for a treat! Affinitas Intimates is an exciting (and relatively new) brand that boasts two ranges; one to suit a 'mainstream' market - 'Affinitas' (cup sizes 30-38 A-DD) and a 'fuller bust' market - 'Parfait' (cup sizes 30D-40G). 

   I originally came across the 'Affinitas' range and loved the flirty, feminine designs - from the pretty everyday bras to the glamorous babydolls, bustiers and chemises with embroidered lace, bows and ruffles. I was, of course, thrilled to find a fuller bust counterpart in the brand. It was such a great feeling to know that I could enjoy the stylish offerings of the Affinitas Intimates brand through the 'Parfait range.' 

   What differentiates 'Parfait' from some of the other fuller bust brands out there at the moment, is the desire to provide support as well as really fashion-forward and glamorous designs. The current collection has a wide range of styles to cover many different tastes; practical microfibre and cotton basics (e.g. Jeanie, Kelly, Casey), bras that make the cross-over between 'everyday' and 'special' occasion (e.g. Isabella, Anna) and boudoir beauties made from stretch satin (e.g. Charlotte, Fiona). The 'Parfait' range also includes bustiers, camisoles and babydolls. The brand clearly pay special attention to detail through their use of luxurious materials and pretty embellishments, so it was no wonder that 'Parfait' found a fan in me! (Product reviews coming soon!)

   To fuel my excitement about this new brand, I was delighted to receive an invitation to attend the Affinitas Intimates Autumn/Winter 2012 Press event, which took place at the Covent Garden Hotel, London.

   The Affinitas collections were showcased in the warmly lit 'Red room' and the plush red sofas and vintage-esque wallpaper gave the venue a sumptuous feel. After a bite of breakfast (fresh fruit slices and mini eggs benedict - yum!), I explored the 'Affinitas' and 'Parfait' ranges to see what they had in store for us for Autumn/Winter 2012...


   For those of you who fit into the 'Affinitas' size range, there are some gorgeous designs for A/W12. The collection is based around the concept of southern belles versus boudoir belles, country life meets the glamorous lights of the city..

   This charming gingham 'Taylor' bra set is updated in black and indigo colourways for A/W12. Gingham has made its way back into the style stakes again, so this is the perfect way to channel the rustic trend in style. The 'Taylor' also comes as a cute little chemise with a cream broderie anglaise style trim and black bow motif.

   The 'Victoria' is a contemporary interpretation of the popular animal trend. The vivid purple and white zebra print, delicate lace and pretty bows make this a very flirty and quirky set. The 'Victoria' also comes in a darker alternative of black/purple, which is equally seductive.

   For A/W12, Affinitas also have some very 'boudoir glam' offerings:

   The 'Sydney' takes on city chic, giving a feminine twist to the tuxedo. This bra set features soft satin panels in black and rich maroon with pretty detailing; a white lace trim and 'coquettish dual buttons'. This contour push up bra is the ideal cleavage enhancer and the high waist garter belt really adds to the glamour of this set.

   The 'Jennifer' provides the very best in boudoir elegance. The black mesh and lace overlay set against the sumptuous emerald green makes this a really sexy set. Aside from a cleavage flattering lingerie set, the 'Jennifer' is also available as a seductive bustier!

   As you may well know, I absolutely adore longline bras, so I did get a pang of envy when I saw these beauties! Aptly named, 'Marilyn', these vintage style longline bras and high waisted (thong back) knickers are incredibly sophisticated and beautiful. (Also comes as a chemise - below)

   Last but not least, I couldn't resist fawning over the cute Affinitas bridal lingerie set and basque - definitely one to check out if you're a bride to be and lucky enough to fit the sizing..


   And now, to the eagerly anticipated fuller bust range: 'Parfait' by Affinitas! The Parfait Autumn/Winter12 range is every bit the decadent counterpart to the Affinitas range. The collection is like looking inside a pin-up girl's wardrobe! The range is replete with stunning satin balconettes, underwired lace babydolls, retro high-waisted knickers and more..

   I loved the gorgeous 'Angelina' set - the black polka dot mesh overlay on a metallic base gives it a very seductive, burlesque feel. The 'key hole' cut-out and bow at the centre of the bra cups is really original too. For added boudoir appeal, the underwired 'Angelina' babydoll looks like a great curve-flatterer!

   The 'Angelina' also comes in this interesting berry pink colour with mink brown lace overlay. This colour combination is proving to be a bit like marmite - you either love it or hate it. I personally keep swaying back and forth - the colour combination looks slightly odd unworn, but it looks great worn in this press picture...what do you think?

   Take a walk on the wild side in the 'Leslie', which offers both a plunge and balconette bra. The 'Leslie' is based on this season's popular 'Charlotte' bra (review to come!) The on-trend animal print, black piping, pin-up style red bows and stretch mesh look set to make the 'Leslie' another big hit for A/W!

   Say hello to all-over lace with 'Madeline'! The vivid blue scalloped lace trim and dainty bows give this padded plunge and high waisted knicker set a vintage edge - simple but effortlessly elegant!

   The unpadded 'Madeline' in grey lace with baby pink lace trim and bows - this would make for a lovely, girly everyday set.

   The 'Stella' comes in a chocolate/mink shade, featuring a decadent satin and lace combo. The central lace-up corset detail and crystal droplets make for beautiful finishing touches!

   The 'Stella' is also available as an underwired and unpadded babydoll - I love the teal gem tone!

   Channel your inner glamourpuss with the 'Alexis' in this stunning gem tone pink/purple. Luxurious satin, floral lace and a beautiful bow and teardrop crystal bead hanging charm add to this set's feminine elegance. A beautiful set both in the moulded bra form and unpadded babydoll.

   This season's 'Donna' bra is updated in mink (and black) for A/W..this unpadded set is a great 'not-so-basic' set, with its pretty bow detailing.

   The popular 'Fiona' bra comes back in vibrant scarlet red, which is spot on for A/W (being the festive season and all!) The black contrast lace trim and bow motif make this a very glamorous set indeed! This would look amazing paired with red lippie and black stockings too..

The 'Fiona' is also available in this gorgeous champagne satin and coffee lace colourway, which I slighty prefer to the red - it is a little bit more unusual, understatedly chic and incredibly sophisticated!


   I had a great time at the Affinitas Intimates press day and want to say a big thank you to the delightful Lynsey for taking me through the collections. I am really excited by the A/W12 'Parfait' range and can't wait to try some of these beautiful sets when they launch! Definitely a brand to watch..

To find out more about your nearest Affinitas and Parfait stockist or online retailer, visit their website here.

Kitty xo