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Freya Swimwear Soda Underwire Tankini : Thin-Strap Style With Thick-Strap Support

Several years ago, I happily packed my bags for four-month tour of New Zealand. I brought my swimsuit, thinking I'd stop at public swimming pools along my journey and get some laps in. I also packed my EQ Tankini top and Boy shorts, knowing I'd be stopping at as many hot springs as possible. I was after the ultimate hot soak.

Well, it probably won't surprise you that my swimsuit never left my suitcase. My tankini was much used, although I ended up wearing a sports bra under it because I needed real support. No biggie, but deep down it bugged me that all these A- and B-cuppers were running around the beaches in their strappy little tankinis, and I was double-wide strap lady.

Obviously, I didn't let it get in the way of my fun. Still, I was very happy to discover the UK-based Freya company a few years ago. Their wide range of sizes is a goddess send to women like me who have a relatively small band size but a large cup size. First, I tried and loved a couple of their sports bras.

These days, I'm soaking in the Soda Underwire Tankini, and loving both the thin-strap design and the full support I get from the built-in underwire bra. I can walk without bouncing!! I can get in and out of the different temperature tubs at the spa without a jiggle. All with the modesty of the tankini coverage. I am after all, almost 45 and a long way from my 22-year-old body.

What I love about this well-fitting, flattering swim top is that the bra is separate from the top, attached by stitching the neckline to the tops of the bra cups. The benefit of this type of construction is that the bra actually fits like a bra and the tankini fits over it like a second skin. No extra breast tissue squishing out under my armpits. I have tried on so many so-called built-in-bra style tankinis and they are ridiculous because there is no actual bra, just some extra elastic where a ribcage band would go. Dumb.

Another thing I like about the Soda swimwear line: I have a choice of bottoms to match my tankini. I wear the Soda Short for more modest coverage (pictured) and the Soda Classic Brief when I'm fit and feeling ready to reveal a bit more skin. Both styles fit great.

Sizes: 30-38-, C cup to a GG cup, available in Black. Other colors available on UK-based online retail sites. There are several other swimwear pieces in the Soda line. Check them out at

Bottom LIne: The Soda has been a sanity saver. It's hard living in a country where bra and swimsuit companies ignore large-breasted, small rib-caged women. Trying to find a swimsuit is hard enough for any woman, but when your size doesn't even exist it's demoralizing.-- E.D. (Oct 09)

BUY ONLINE : $60 for top, $28 for Soda Short, $25 for Classic Brief at Some sizes on sale for $41.99 at, $16.99 Classic Brief at Amazon,

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