Friday, May 27, 2011

From July to the End of September

Hiya, mons-fondlers!

You know when you get a new magazine and you go through it, methodically ripping out all the little postcards?

80% Savings Off Newsstand Price!  Give A Gift Subscription! Wow! First 3 Issues Free!  Two years for the price of one! 

You know how you shake your new magazine open, rolling your eyes as all the cards fall out, going, "These are so annoying. Who the fuck falls for this?" ?
[via snazzzzzy]
I fall for it.

They're for me.
I'm sorry. 
[via calivintage]
I'm the reason those little cards exist.  

I'm the reason you can't have a blissful, smooth, uninterrupted glossymag reading experience.

Those cards were put in your magazine to reach me.  
I am the intended audience. 
They totally work.

I examine each one, going, "ooh, that is a good savings! Only twelve dollars to have 15 issues sent to my door?" and promptly sign up to receive two years worth of Maxim.
On the first of the month, our mailman parks his truck outside the door and wearily straps on his back brace.

Vogue because I need it.

Bust because it's Bust.

GQ for CJ.

Dwell so we can see what other, richer, more creative hipster yuppies do with their ecologically friendly, 600 square foot loft.  

You cannot be in Dwell unless you have a child under the age of six riding a tricycle across your repurposed-original-oakwood-floorboards-that-were-beautiful-and-would-you-believe-this?-right-under-the-linoleum-when-we-bought-this-place living room.

The Ensign to keep tabs on the Mormons.

Cosmopolitan to infuriate me and raise my blood pressure to new, rage-y heights.

The Economist to lay out when company comes over.

Lucky because I need to know about new lip gloss developments.

Glamour because I got a year for $1.

Isn't getting mail just so exciting???

Anyway! The point of this is: 

y'allfags, starting this weekend, it's Officially Summer.

And as I was lounging in the bathtub, paging through the stack of magazines propped on this little thing:
[actual photo of my bathtub and awesome tray-thingie]
I started noticing a theme.

Bikini season!  What to wear!  Tone up for swimsuit season! Bikinis!  Sexy one-pieces!  Cute cover ups! BikinisbikinisbikinisBikinisbikinisbikinisBikinisbikinisbikinis!

And I suddenly remembered a plaintive lil' letter I got way back in March.
Slushy old March, when swimsuits were nothing but a softly coconut-scented daydream.

Here's the letter:

Hey there, Effing Dykes author!

I've got a very important question for you.  

My wife and I are going crazy trying to find her something for swimwear.  She's an adorable 115 lb boyish girl, and can't find men's board shorts that don't make her look like she just stumbled out of her dad's closet.  

On the other hand, she's certainly not comfortable in the exclusively pastel 'n tiny options offered to "the fairer sex".  

When it comes to the top, she says she'd be more comfortable topless than in a bikini top, which NYS laws don't allow. 

Trying to find a women's surf shirt without flowers on it is utterly impossible.
I've scoured the internet looking for suggestions, only to find wretchedly composed articles using words and phrases like "tankini" and  "modest coverage swimsuits".  

So my question is:
How the hell does a skinny little prince of a lesbian find good swimwear?  Or...what looks good on said prince?  Do you have any suggestions?  Anything you've noticed that stands out in your mind?  Maybe even just a point toward the right direction?  Help?  Pretty please?


OMG you gays it's summer and Jenny's little lesbian princeling needs our help!!
[via whengirlsattack]

Inspired, I started flipping furiously through all my new magazines.

Surely, somewhere, there would be swimwear options to satisfy Jenny and her boifriend.
[via sarahtheterror]
 But...there wasn't.

Two hours, 17 minutes, 11 gallons of lukewarm bathwater and one dropped-then-hastily-dried-with-a-hairdryer cell phone later, I still hadn't found a solution to what I was now thinking of as:

The Swimsuit Situation.

If you don't like girly shit, what the fuck are you supposed to wear at the beach?

[via superbayer]
I'd never thought about it before.

I mean, femmes (femmes who like really femmey stuff and are comfortable being mostly naked in public) have it easy.

There are shitloads of options.

Bikini.  Adorable one-piece.  Sarong.  

Even if you're not extra thrilled about showing skin, there's options. 

But what about the rest of the lesbians?
[by typewrit]
A lot of non-femmey dykes have no problem with swimwear, either. 

Plenty of gay girls never even give this issue the slightest thought, as they have been rocking the Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit since the dawn of time.

Oh, what, you don't know the Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit?

Like everything else worth knowing, it's in here: 

Recipe for Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit:

Slightly-above-knee length boardshorts. 

* Bikini top.

* White men's ribbed tank top for a cover up.

* Some kind of short wooden/leather/shell necklace.

Don ingredients at the end of May, feeling free to mix in: 

wraparound sunglasses, aviator shades, visor, leather or rubber flip-flops/shower shoes. 

1) Marinate in outfit until end of September.  

2) Attend backyard barbecues, beach parties, pride events, and outings involving boats.

3) Flash gang signs during pictures while holding Coors Lite/PBR.

4) Upload to Facebook.


If you see a woman sporting the Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit, the likelihood that she's a homo exponentially increases.

But take heed, gayelles!
If all the components of the Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit are there, but the board shorts are mini board shorts, like these
all bets are off.

They're board shorts, yes.  But they are short shorts, exponentially lowering the chance of gayness.


She could be a femme, but further investigation will obviously be needed.

But...what about the dykes who won't wear a bikini top - drawing the eye, as bikini tops do, to breasts?
[via kallibery]

Many (not all) of our people have body issues.  
A discomfort with putting ourselves on display.  

And most of the time, it's no problem -  we're dressed.

We're dressed well, goddammit.  
[Mea: by Emma Freeman Photography,]
Clothing, while obviously important to all people, is of special importance to queers, as it gets all extra-wrapped up in our gender and social identities. 

Especially butch, boi, and androgynous-type queers.
[via maverickgameface]

Swimsuit season strips everything bare.  

I never really thought about it before, but it must make a lot of dykes feel incredibly vulnerable to don swimwear and suddenly have PLENTY of emphasis placed on rather, um, emotionally loaded body parts. 
[via snow-tippedpines]

When I googled "lesbian swimwear", I found this gem of a comment from someone named SCAllen under a rather unhelpful article on butch swimsuits: 

"Bottom line, there is no butch way to wear a swimsuit and still look your usual hardcore awesome butchy self. By its very nature, a woman's swimsuit calls attention to curves and breasts and, well, femininity, that is in paradox to your butch identity."


In other words: if you're anywhere on the spectrum of "not happy to put on a bikini top", you're fucked.

Going shirtless is illegal.
[via stinker]

And I don't know about you, but when I think 'one-piece', I think Lands End.

For butchier boob-holdage, you're left with sports bras.
But sports bras at the pool are so obviously sports bras at the pool.

Buttondown Hawaiian shirts, as Jenny mentioned, are so...difficult.  And unswim-like.  

So covered in sunsets.

The horror.
I was coming up empty-handed for answers.

But no worries!
Fortunately for me, I live with CJ, a veritable fountain of sartorial knowledge.

She'd be sure to set me in the right direction.

Nothing doin'.

I forgot that CJ is about as self-conscious as naked two-year-old raised on a womyn's farm commune.

She runs around in literally the smallest, white, semi-see-through string bikini commercially available in America today.

Hot, but bah.

The Sartorial Butch  had everything but swimwear.
[via jjlevine]

My other butch/boi friends had no suggestions other than the Classic Lesbian Beach Outfit.

Cai actually laughed at me when I called and said, "Why don't you also solve world hunger while you're at it. Yeah, that'd be good."

I was at my wit's end.  

But then, at the last minute, a miracle occurred.
I stumbled upon this: 

Autostraddle's 2010 Swimsuit Edition

[via dapperdandy]
Click on the link, friends.

It's exhaustively researched.
It has links to shopping websites.
It holds the key.
[by nk]
Jenny, tell the lesbian prince, ok?  

And all y'allfags: 

what do you wear when it's time to hit the pool?



    1. I REALLY love the photo of your bathtub fancy tray.

    2. Superb wonder-timing. The past couple of (finally summer) days, I've been prancing about a south florida beach vitamin D-tripping with my brother. People keep thinking we're a married couple and I'm busy sipping my iced almond milk latte like...why are people around here calling you my husband?
    ANSWER: You got it. Swimwear. I'm a moderately femme-y one, but in normal clothes I look like an ill match for my preppy lil bro. In swimwear??? Seems like there's nothing I can do! Put me in my green and brown little strappy bikini and I look like any frat boy's gf! WEIRD.

  2. I wear a custom made, pseudo wetsuit from south africa. I bought it years ago, and I forgot the company's name. It looks similar to this though, except all black. it's made out of swimsuit material. I love it, but the arms make it hard to swim. Looks cool, too.

  3. I wear a bikini top as a bra pretty much all summer (so it pokes out of my shirts and dresses and looks superfuckingcute.)

    It is my goal for this Pride to find a hot butch to untie my bikini with her teeth. Heh.

  4. I wouldn't know where to start. Bikini tops! Where to find an alright bikini top! And boardshorts, with my wide hips! They then usually reach down to my ankles, if they fit around the hips.

    I usually wear these:

    or...I go skinny dipping!

  5. Board shorts or Patagonia baggies and sleeveless rash guard. (no, not what you think)

  6. Yaaay Autostraddle. They are positively the shit.

    Great topic. I actually haven't thought about swimming for a long time since it's still pretty cold here in Michigan. I wouldn't consider myself butch or femme but a whatever in-between, but I usually just wear a bikini top and bottom. Truthfully though, it still scares the hell out of me to wear it at the beach because I just feel so self-conscious, but I still do it. It might not be a bad idea to try one of the options Autostraddle gives.

    Thanks, Krista!


    They come in all sorts of colors (not just girly ones or ones with flowers) and are very flattering and are super for swimming because they keep all your body parts in check. PLUS they protect you from the sun which is especially important if you are very, very fair-skinned like I am. If you'd rather have something you can swim in that is not form-fitting, check out shirts you can swim in from Australian companies that are supposed to protect your from UV-rays. They are sporty and they keep you from getting skin cancer-- double whammy.

  8. And then there is the middle aged femme swimwear challenge. How to look hot and fabulously queerly femme when your once hottie body has sagged and cheesed out on you but you wouldn't wear board shorts even for money, and frankly, your bikini days are long gone? My solution: A tankini with overall shorts over the top that have been bejeweled and customized to ridiculous ends. So easy to just slip off for that dip in the water. And accessorize - over the top flip flops and sunglasses. Humor always helps.

  9. Alright, this kindof changed my life during bathing suit season: triathlon sports bras. They are meant for running (so they compress) but also for swimming. Which means they function as swimsuits. They wick! And don't hold water! And are generally awesome for less femme-identifying people! Check it out. I cringe every time I see a waterlogged, stretched out old sports bra at the pool. There actually are sports bras meant for water purposes. Find one. Remember- TRIATHLON BRAS.

  10. 1) LOVE your blog! My friend Sarah introduced it to me as I am a hetero mildly obsessed with the homo culture. Totally respective! Your blog is the highlight of my life every 2 weeks or so. :-)

    2) Where did you buy your awesome over the tub thingie? AHHHHHH I LOVE IT!!!!

  11. Toplessness is legal in a number of states in America, specifically including New York:

    Just seemed to be a factual error.

  12. I second what other people said...rash guards.
    I found this site (I'm not suggesting anyone buy from them because I never have) that shows lots of different styles:

    Thanks for writing this article, beaches have always been a dilemma for me.

  13. The article mostly pegged me, what with the typical lesbian beach-ware. I wear girls' boardshorts that are slightly above the knee, a bikini top, and a girls' blue striped tanktop to cover it when I am not in the water. I WOULD wear the matching bikini bottom I have, without the boardshorts, if it were not for my low self-confidence concerning my thighs and rear.


  14. Twee adorable bikinis and retro-y one pieces.

    I'm femme, can't you tell?

    That being said - Jenny! Darling! Depending on where you are in New York means your wifey actually *can* go top-free.

  15. Two important things:

    1. Toplessness is legal in Ontario, fellow canucks.

    2. You can buy athletic two-pieces at swimwear athletic stores whereby the top looks kinda like a sports bra but is also obviously a swimsuit. They cost a bundle and are a bit hard to find. I use one for lap swimming, not beachwear, but I'm sure they would do the trick.

  16. I wear the exact swimsuit Marilyn Monroe is wearing at the top of this article, except mine is periwinkle. Coincidence? or MAGICAL?

  17. NYC Laws allow for anyone to be topless. Dykes on bikes during pride is an easy example. I think your reader should just move a little south. Also, I understand the problem, yet I found some cute longer girl shorts at Khols and a top that I love. Still a two piece but not too girly. Just an idea.

  18. I see Mary B & Jess! great blog.

  19. Last season VOLLEY SHORTS were a big thing in men's swimwear. Cut shorter than board shorts, usually in solid colors, may be able to get for cheap since they are out of style now.

    Can't help with the top half though.

  20. RASH GUARDS for the win! soooo sexy..

  21. Hey! I would totally suggest Jenny's girlfriend check out the boy's section of swimwear. She might can find some board shorts made for kids which would fit her size. I have several petite friends who shop in girls and boys' clothing sections; the clothes are cheaper and smaller! Also, if you're looking with a fitted button-down shirt for a petite girl, check out the boys' section :)

  22. I just wear a normal bikini, haha. I have it easier than my girlfriend, who wears swimming trunks and a shirt. :P

  23. Hehehehehehehe. My girlfriends 10 year old daughter just requested to have boys swim trunks and a bikini top for a swimsuit this year. That combined with this post is just hilarious to me.

  24. Yes to the triathalon bra! The best invention in the world! I present so femme; I recently discovered just how queer a miniskirt really can look.
    But somehow put me near water or a bike or well just about anything physical and I can't be femme. It's absurd. And competitive. And well, I turn into super-power-butch-sporty-dyke.
    So it's a Tri top and tri shorts, 7" for better coverage and compression!

    I would totally take off a breast to be a better archer.

  25. For a while I had a suit like these I loved it cause it was firm and pressed my boobs down and my hind quarters. But, it wore out and I have been unable to find another. I love vintage beach wear (early 1900s) for both the dudes and the ladies.

    Now I have hurley board shorts for the bottom and a t-shirt/cut-off/light-fabric long sleeve button up/ bra top. I also go topless when out in the middle of the lake. Sometimes I wear these old holy converse shorts that I have had since high school. they dry quickly.

    Always a dilemma what to wear in the water, cause the shit I really want to wear is not out there...guess i should learn how to sew.

  26. RASH GUARDS. Sports shops rather than swimwear shops for maximum athletic style and minimum flowers n frills. My butch lover wears a midriff rash guard (middle of the stomach for minimum chest focus) that does a complete binder-effect on their chest. Combined with normal swimmer bottoms (like boy-leg style), broad shoulders & super-butch presentation, and they continue to be mistaken for my boyfriend even at the beach.

  27. I always liked Speedo suits. I know what you're thinking, but their women's suits for racing and swim practice sort of... compress your chest, because you want to be streamlined in the water. They're very comfortable, durable, and come in a variety of non-flowery styles. I tended to wear them with board shorts, which doesn't help poor Jenny if her gal can't find board shorts that fit, unfortunately.

  28. Yeah. Same here. I wear a one piece speedo. Because my thighs are one of my most self-conscious one, a lot of times I'll wear shorts if I'm not in the water.

  29. I'm seconding the recommendation of Speedo racing suits. I wear a two-piece and the top is basically a sports bra. Combine with board shorts or athletic shorts and you're good to go. Also, Speedo suits are a bit pricy, but mine's lasted a while. And it was relatively easy to find in a pattern that wasn't super floral or pink. Final perk: you don't have to worry about the waves taking your top away...

  30. I have this probelm (as does my not-currently-but-should-be-girlfriend). I don't have the balls for a bikini top, so I settle for board shorts (from the men's department... damn my birthing hips. Wasted on a lesbian) and a t-shirt. This is beneficial for the modesty, and for my skin because I lobsterfy after an hour in the sun.

    Random addition though... my straight roommate has the same swimming uniform and isn't into boobs.

  31. I'm gonna have to recommend shorts or cut-offs and a wife beater.

    Full stop. forget the bikini top/sports bra..

    Now get in the water.

    ** this suggestion may or may not be influenced by the fact that I like boobs and think I deserve to see them. When it comes to clothing? Less is more, kids.

  32. What about big girls? Would it kill clothing companies to make swim wear that we can feel not disgusting in??

    Anywho...Happy summer to my beautiful queers!

  33. I have huge tits...I confuse the pubescent. Can't do swimwear.

  34. Unless you have a PERFECT body, swimwear always seems difficult to navigate and very hard to find something that you're completely comfortable in. Throw in the desire to defy gender norms and this task seems near impossible.

    Very relevant post! And I agree with Brigid LOL.

  35. I don't think I've bought a new swimsuit since high school. Mine's this dark blue one-piece with a teal wavy pattern and a little skirt-like flap on the front that gathers up to a fake tie on one side. V-neck, nice broad straps, no cleavage, doesn't fall off when I use the diving boards.

  36. Title 9!! Board shorts here:

    And then just find a matching jog-bra type swim top. I got mine at thru Patagonia's site. Patagonia has board shorts too!

  37. I just avoid swimming wherever possible because I HATE HATE HATE swimwear.

    I ordinarily intentionally - even go out of my way - to wear mens' clothes. I do have a pair of mens' boardshorts somewhere but I never wear them because the beach/pool can kiss my butch ass.

    I do own a bikini, to my embarrassment. It has camo patterns on it.


  38. I go for tankini and boy-shorts. but I'm on the slightly femmey side of the butch-femme fence

  39. Challenge accepted-- the Sartorial Butch is working on a swimwear post, but in the meantime there's this tiny one from last summer.

  40. j.crew has women's board shorts this summer. they're not girly, but they'll actually fit is the nice thing, and don't hang to yr knees:

  41. As a few have mentioned, ladies and bois can be topless in NYS, since the early 90's.
    I had never thought of the rashgaurds, but i think that legsuits have a good gender-neutral quality to them, for chicks who like to swim and not just hang out at the beach. (boardshorts were never comfortable on me, they don't have enough mobility.)

  42. wrestling singlets are butch

  43. Lucky for me I am FAR, FAR, FAR, away from the beach. Makes it all so much better, because I like it when the bois keep their pale flesh covered up, makes it all oh so much hotter! So hot makes it makes my heart a little sore!

  44. TOTALLY off topic from swim wear but: I wanna know what you were drinking in your bathtub! That orange-ish beverage on your "awesome tray thingie"...!!!???!

  45. Try sleeveless rashguards, with a bottom of choice. They're swimsuit material, but won't draw as much attention to boobage.



  46. Reef make great board shorts that are not naff - team with a rashie and you are good to go.

  47. Guy's rash guard + like 3 sports bras + board shorts. yup.

    Unfortunately, i'm short and have wide hips (comparatively) and the whole board short thing never works out. had to settle for those mini ones. smh.

  48. The Classic Lesbian Swim Wear.
    Allllllllllllllll the way.
    Though the cute lil necklace is replaced with a thin silver chain with a cross on it.
    No joke.
    Also a hemp anklet made by "some-guy-I-met-Backpacking-Across-Canada."

  49. One piece speedo works for me since I'm a swimmer. I've been considering board shorts but would you have to wear a bikini bottom or something underneath?

  50. For the record, what is wrong with Lands End one piece bathing suits?! I've had one for years. Admittedly, it depends on what they've got which season, but they've got perfectedly good suits.
    Though I do have trouble finding what I like in bathing suits: one piece, long torso, racerback shelf bra, for someone who is skinny and a 34A. The long torso bit is a real killer. It's hard to find one pieces when you are tall, skinny, with no breasts.

  51. i am in full support of the vintage mens onsie swimsuits/wrestling singlets. can be fairly inexpensive at your local sporting goods store and if you get fun colors or designs it can double as a great spandexy costume/super hero piece.
    oh so ssssexy

  52. OMG I melllllltttt for girls in bikini tops and board shorts. I would do anything for a woman if she approached me in a bikini top and board shorts.

  53. This Asian brand called t-studio (who makes boob bindy thingy) also makes "swim suit/top" bind wears like this one...

    as for trunks, some company like analog makes more vintage kind of boardshorts. Which has a shorter cut/out seam. The normal ones are about 22"(inseam) for me it looks like i'm wearing my dad's trunks (i'm 5'3) but the shorter seam (20" inseam) sits perfect, I've tried them on at work haha. so just look for the more vintage/shorter cut of boardshorts. (if ur short like me i guess) otherwise the normal guys board shorts should be fine.

  54. Boyshorts or a swimskirt (boyshorts cant handle my ass sometimes) and a halter top swimsuit. Yeaahhh.

  55. I like mini board shorts! Or jean shorts, if allowed.

    With that, a bikini top; the tanktop depends on my company. If i'm with family or Mormons (common where i live) i'll wear it so i dont stick out.

  56. I've been having an impossible time of finding beach clothes1 I'm a semi-tomboy, but definitely not down with the bikini top thing. Autostraddle definitely gave me some good ideas- I've now got mid-length boardshorts and a tank, which means for the first time in 4 years I can actually go swimming. I've been avoiding the pool thanks to the awkwardness of really girly bathing suits, and I'm so glad to be getting back to it.

  57. i am much more on the butch side & i wear this in black:
    it's cool because it has a built in bra thing so you don't have to wear a bra underneath & it dries quickly because of the material. also youre fully covered but have your shoulders bare which is nice for swimming etc.
    i only wear mens clothing really & tried for a long time to find a men's top that would work for me, but this has been by far the best solution. when i'm not in the water i wear a mens white t or sleveless tanktop over it + men's board shorts ;)

  58. Ugh, I HATE swimwear. I pretty much have the perfect body (;-P): I'm tall, skinny, but toned and tanned. Yeah, that sounds like a beach-type person, doesn't it? I consider myself to be an androgynous lezzie. I have a Shane-esque haircut and broad shoulders and I look absolutely hideous in a bikini. I live close to the beach, where I can just wear boardshorts and go topless, which is great. But I can't go topless to public swimming pools in winter. So I just got a short pair of boardshorts (kinda like these: , but all white) and a darkblue rashguard. My outfit looks a lot like this: , only gayer because of my hair/broad shoulders/tiny boobs/big muff-diver watch. haha

  59. My gf generally dons some american apparel men's swim trunks and a bike jersey. The bike shirt is lightweight and breathable and they dry really quickly. That's the best alternative to a surf shirt I can think of.

  60. All I can say is, thank god I live in Cali. I'm totally a femme (smaller bikini the better) but if I can get away with only the bottom half, I am a happy happy girl, which totally goes back to your 'lesbians love to be naked' post a few weeks ago - I am definitely one of those.

  61. Krista S. - I'm a curvy girl too, and I am going to contradict Effing Dykes' Krista and wholeheartedly recommend...


    I grew up on that catalogue, and my mom would order gigantic boxes of clothes that my brother and I would tear open like Christmas presents and try on in the living room. And now, I refuse to buy swimsuits and outerwear anywhere else. Those are the two areas that are not, for the most part, deeply buried in frumptown. (I also live in a cold part of Canada, which means thick winter coats are necessary.)

    I have a great racing suit from there that I wear to do laps (which kiiiiinda looks like the suits in the pictures) but I also have their All-over Control Slender Grecian Swimsuit (long-ass link, just search it) which is flattering AND a good quality swimsuit for people who actually wear swimsuits to swim. And there's a ton of other cute, flattering swimsuits that don't look like they're only designed for soccer moms or lifeguards. A lot of the special "Control" swimsuits are on the femmey side (as am I) but there's a lot of more athletic looking swimsuits, too. And their tankini tops offer a lot of coverage, which is a nice middle-ground for masculine of centre folks not looking to show off a ton of skin. AND they have rash guard tops with shelf bras. AND many of their swimsuits come in Long, which is GREAT for tall girls.

    Don't listen to the haters. Land's End is AWESOME. Buy a coat from there, too, espesh if you live in Canada.

  62. I'm proud of my swim/lay-wear ensemble for this year: vintage super-short but 70's baggy teal and purple men's Speedo brand swimsuit with a black triangle non-string bikini top. It's fly. And straddles gender swimming norms, obvi.

  63. Sterre's suggestion of triathlon bras has just saved my life.

    Last year I bought a Hurley halter top and a pair of men's trunks from Target. Makes for an interesting combo. Whipped them out for memorial day and at one point my friend asked if I was wearing anything under the swim trunks.

    No. No I was not. They were my bottoms.

  64. Pool Outfit For the Futch:
    Bikini Top
    Canvas shoes
    Hoodie (to be slowly peeled off and tossed on a chair)
    Thumb ring
    When it gets later (and cooler) slip back on shoes and hoodie, zipping it up most of the way and tucking your aviators right at the zipper. When you get out of the pool for an extended period of time, futz with your wet hair by tousling and messily parting it off to the side so it dries that way, all messily styled and sunkissed.

    For those who small butch/bois and do not care for bikini tops or girly rash guards, try the rash gaurds in the boys department. The larger sizes have worked for some of my boi friends.

  65. You're almost at 2 million views! I'm proud to contribute to that number.

    Dunno how to swim, tired of accidentally drinking chlorinated/salty dirty beach water, tired of red pained eyes. No need for a swimsuit!

    Shorts and a T-shirt. I'm Asian hence short, so no tank tops/camis in public for me ever because they're too revealing and always show my bra. (maybe my body is simply shaped weird and I'm fat)

    I've never willingly bought men's clothings but sometimes I'd find it more appealing than very feminine clothes. One day, I'm confident I can do it! Women shorts are way too short for me...

    heart your blog! look at my timestamp! there's no where else i'd rather be except maybe in bed with a lady

  66. If the gay lady in question is 115, she could probably get away with going what my girlfriend does - shop in the little boys section. Almost all of her clothing comes from there. Board shorts fit her perfectly in the upper sizes and she can find those odd, sort of stretchy swim shirts with graphics like sharks or ninja turtles on them that actual fit her. Just sayin', it's not an option for many but some it works like a charm.

  67. well hey folks. i too have struggled with this issue. my solution as of this summer: i bought a bathing suit bottom from target that was originally marketed toward feminine women. they're little black briefs with strings up the sides that pulled them up to about the hips. i took the strings out and was left with really basic black trunk bottoms. then i bought a totally plain, quick drying black sports bra.

    it's not perfect, but it's the best i've found yet.

  68. I wear the tiny-butch variation of the lesbian beachwear. My board shorts come from the boys section so they're a bit more fitted (and because I'm 100 lbs) and show off the parts of me that I want to show off, and I wear a beater (usually red) with a double bra under it to bind. However, if I'm in a place where women can be topless...

    I'm trying to find a bathing suit for my very pale, very modest masculine lady. We've decided that a loose fitting rashguard and large board shorts might work for her...

  69. I really wish you would write these bi-weekly or weekly. i love them. keep up the good work :)
    - Seanna S.F.

  70. i have read this article and all the comments, and i still have no idea what to do for swimwear. in the past, i have been lucky enough to just go skinny dipping or wear whatever bra/underwear i had laying around. i have since moved to Brooklyn where I don't feel comfortable with that (aka not my parent's backyard). I have giant boobs and a muffin top, so bikini tops are not for me. I also hate most sport wear tops because they push my boobs down and out, which is not the direction i need them to go in. HELP! I want a tankini-style top that lifts and separates, but without the ruffles and flowery gross patterns. Also, it would be nice if it didn't fall off as soon as i dive in.

    Bottoms, I can handle. Board shorts or retro men's trunks. Done.

  71. If you don't want to wear a sports bra at the beach nike makes a ton of two piece tops that look like them but now, and all of our thinner bois should definitely consider checking out the boys section at old navy for trunks. They hit at the perfect spot, not short shorts, but not floor-length pants either, and they fit snugger.

  72. Well, I've spent the past two weeks reading this whole blog from the beginning, trying not to be too greedy, "just one month's posts today, okay, two... three! arrr, can't stop reading!". Anyway, today I finished, all done! I've read all there was! Boohoo. Effing Dykes-deprived. Love your writing Krista, pleasepleaseplease keep this going for a long long time. xo

  73. I've always been pretty ragey about swimsuits as well! I have no problem with bikini tops but I haven't been able to find non-ridiculous board shorts since I was twelve :( my ass is just not made for thongs! it's like somebody glued a pair of little saucers to my hips! nobody wants to see that!

    What I really want is some sort of frilly skirt/shorts swimsuit thingy, and although I have not yet had the funds to purchase it, I have recently discovered a solution!

    Ladies, the answer is Rockabilly.


    Hark ye back unto the sixties and remove all of the awkward bits: this is rockabilly.

    And at a rockabilly market thing a few months ago I spied a whole RACK of these little things:

  74. Water polo speedo and board shorts from The Buckle.

  75. Go to one of the nicer upscale stores that sell little fay boy clothes. XL & XXL in boys. They usually have cool swim shorts & matching shirts that will fit any skinny 115 lb. Boi. That's how I do it.

  76. Also, for that classy 40's look, check out Esther Williams Swimwear. The make them to your specifications.

  77. I've read this about 3 times over in utter awe of how much of a stereotypical dyke I am. I'm going to get ideas in how to change up the style for this year.

  78. So, two things:
    1) I do the magazine thing too. Only mine are a lot geekier (think WIRED)
    2) I know what you mean about the lands-end thing. Up until now, I've always had to settle for that because it was the least curve-emphasising, skin-showing thing I could wear that my mother didn't object to. I don't want no fancy shit on my bathing suit. That being said, I think they can make a cheap alternative for hunting down a rashguard. I'm thinking if you wear a black speedo one peice with boardshorts, it's basically the lesbian beach outfit without having to take off the wife beater. Plus, the boob-minimizing thing.

  79. I am ok with wearing lesbian beach uniform. I also sport the sunglasses and a beach appropriate hat.

  80. I'm fat. Nobody wants to see me in a bathing suit, and I don't want to be seen in one. The beach is the only time I even wear SHORTS. I mean, for real. I am totes serious. So, in short, at the pool, I wear boys' board shorts and a tank top. Too young for granny bathing suits, too fat for real ones. That works Perfect. And sunglasses. I hate sun in my eyes. :)

    Sorry for the cleanse, Krista. I am starting a raw foods diet in July when I will actually be able to afford to go full out like that. Thanks as always, you're awesome.

  81. I wear a one piece swimsuit that I got at Costco (so, no cleavage showing) plus a pair of guys swim trunks. Could be worse. Awesome autostraddle link.

  82. Yes, yes, yes to Rashguard! Now here's for hoping they never go out of style...

  83. Its hard for me in the summer time. Im pretty little and there is no way in hell id be caught in a bikini. I have swimming trunks that make me look like a pimp but it is impossible for me to hide anything with a bikini top or a shirt. im big upstairs to say the least. Summer time is just very uncomfortable

  84. This has proved enlightening as I haven't bothered to buy swimwear since I was still a tiny person wearing a one-piece. Every occasion where I've gone swimming since I grew out of that one has been of the a spontaneously-jump-into-the-ocean-pausing-only-to-roll-up-your-jeans kind of deal. Now, however, we are going camping at a lake, and I don't strike me as a bikini person. Three days to throw this thing together, should be fun.

  85. You keep on saying how it's illegal for women to go topless, even though some would be comfortable that way. This got me to thinking, why is it that men can take their tops off but women can't. There is the obvious answer: women have boobs, but think about it! Topless suits for men used to be considered very daring, but they still got away with it. It strikes me that a law preventing women from doing something that men are allowed to do would be somewhat unconstitutional. Just food for thought.

    P.S. I love your bathtub tray :D

  86. OH just an FYI, in Austin (texas believe it or fucking not) it is LEGAL for a woman to be topless anywhere a man can be.

  87. Normaly just wear guys board shorts with or without a tank top, depending on the people im with. though i do wear guys board shorts, a racing one piece (excalant compresion :D) and a tee sometimes, depends on how i feel on the day (gender queer.

  88. I'm am a very quirky person. When I first started developing, my mind was suddenly crushed with insecurities. Then I was in theater much later, and I could proably perform any act naked without awkwardness, but so much as talk about my brestie westies off stage and my spine would suddenly feel like developing a kink, so I could aim "the twins" at the ground, away from wretched eyes. Though more theater helps me stand up straight (it has 't made me straigh yet lol) I still am massively awkward exposing more then my shoulders, and wearing shorts, and lately have just been avoiding pools (actuall 2 years : 0). You just solved one of my major problems, thaaaannnkkk yoooou :)

  89. Try the board shorts from They're technically for mma but they feel and look the same and actually come in womens sizes/cuts. Go a size up from what you normally wear though if you order

  90. Ok, this is way overdue but coming from sunny South Africa, where we're having this problem right now. Um, I have never been able to find a swimsuit I wanted, so I just wear one of those black vest tops with built-in breast support (I have FF cup breasts so not suitable for string bikinis) with regular bikini bottoms. Plain, simple, and you can swim in it. And when you're done swimming, throw on shorts or jeans and you're dressed. Voila.

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