July 5 2014 is National Bikini Day, celebrating the invention of the bikini by French designer Louis Reard. His new swimwear design, named after the Bikini Atoll in the Pacific where the US had recently conducted atomic testing, was first modelled at a public pool in Paris and the skimpy two-piece was soon a hit – despite initial resistance from several European countries, US states and the Vatican, which described it as ‘sinful’.
By the 1950s, however, the bikini was clearly here to stay, thanks in part to being embraced by Hollywood’s pin-up stars, and it has gone on to become the most popular form of swimwear in the world. So to celebrate this swimwear-changing innovation, here are some of this season’s most fabulous bikinis.
The specialist D plus swimwear brand Hoola makes truly delectable bikinis in a range of plain colours and pretty print. This summer’s highlight for us has to be the Betsey in green.
Buy: bandeau top, 28-34 D-G, £65. Side ruched pants, XS-XL, £42.50. Hoola.co.
This super cute frilled bikini from quirky designer swimwear brand Pistol Panties channels this summer’s retro prints trend and will certainly turn heads.
Buy: bikini set, 8-14, £139. Pistol Panties.
If money’s no object, glam it up this summer in this stunning bikini from Emilio Pucci.
Buy: bikini set, 8-12, £330. Harrods.com.
Hand-embellished with mother of pearl beading, the Madre Perla bikini from Aguaclara is a real showstopper. One for posing in by the pool!
Buy: top, S-L, £105. Brief, S-XL, £75. House of Fraser.
New British brand Bikini Fling is on a mission to create the perfect bikini, and this season’s collection offers a choice of skimpy little styles in the best tradition of the bikini. We love this jungle-inspired print.
Buy: Gabriella top, 8-14, £100. Alicia brief, 8-14, £90. Bikini Fling.