Stylewise SwimsuitsIn exactly two weeks, I’ll be packing my bags for sunny Boracay! I’ve gone every year since I was 12, when there were less hotels and much fewer tourists. But that doesn’t really matter to me—even now, with the relentless crowds and occasional littering, every time I visit, I somehow feel like I’m coming home.

But I do have one teensy, tiny hang-up about my annual pilgrimages. A trip to Boracay marks the start of bikini season—and if there’s one thing I dread about getting beach-ready, it’s climbing into last year’s swimsuit only to see how much weight I’ve put on. Gah!

This is especially true now, since all my work stress has funnelled itself into comfort food fests. Two weeks shy of D-Day, I have this extra pouch on my tummy where all the rice, pasta, and Korean noodles have settled. And, so help me God, I just can’t seem to get rid of it!

Some of the girls I know crash-diet. Others double their gym time. But I hate cutting back on meals, and every day I have to force myself to go through 30 minutes of cardio as it is. The way I see it, it’s pointless to deprive myself of my favorite foods—and in fact, my favorite pastime, eating—for five short-lived days at the beach. (Also, I’m kind of lazy.)

So here’s my press release for Summer 2012: looking great is all in the attitude—not your waistline. If you can’t shed the pounds before you hit the shores, just hide them!

My quick fix? One-piece swimsuits—or in fashion-speak, maillots. They keep a shy torso under wraps and rein in your stomach for a smoother body line. They’re also quite comfortable and virtually fool-proof—you won’t have to worry about losing your bikini top or bottom when you dive headlong into the hotel pool (yes, this has happened to me).

But the best part about the maillot (pronounced may-oh) is that it's a classic. It’s less revealing than a bikini, but on the right girl, it can exude the same amount of sex appeal. It’s been immortalized by bombshells like Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable, so when you wear one, it’s almost like you’re walking in their (sandy) footsteps. I don’t know about you, but I find that pretty glamorous.

Mad for maillots, too, or at least open to the idea? Click through the gallery for 10 of my personal inspirations!

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(L-R: Flashbox photos from Grey Gardens courtesy of HBO Films, from Atonement courtesy of Universal Pictures/StudioCanal/Focus Features, from 10 courtesy of Warner Bros.)

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