Summer is here and we’re all feeling the pressure. Are we still into the maillot…and does it even look good on me? Am I carrying the right bag? Where do we stand on beach jewelry? Have I worked out enough? Should I self tan before or is that tacky? It’s almost enough to make you stay at home in the air conditioning watching Netflix—the key word being “almost.” Luckily we’re way ahead of you and have put together the most comprehensive guide (we’re even telling you what to read!) to a summer as good as you look. Ready your pen and paper and read on.

LET'S GET STARTED

The Best Suit for Your Body Type

There’s no point in having an amazing swimsuit if you don’t look amazing in it. But how do you know whether that Marysia maillot (though cute and trending!) is doing you any favors? Cue our guide to the most flattering styles for every shape.

The How-to on Beach Bijoux

There seems to be a misconception that women need to leave their jewelry at home when they head off to the beach. (That’s certainly not the Moda approach!) We asked Town & Country Editor-in-Chief (and notorious jewelry authority) Stellene Volandes to lend her expertise to the issue.

I try and avoid the word “appropriate” because I think it has held jewelry back for years—remember the idea that diamonds were only “appropriate” for evening?

 

I prefer really big jewelry statements for the beach whether it means one bold piece or layering multiple delicate ones. As far as I am concerned, you should feel free to pair jewels with a swimsuit the way you would with any other ensemble.

 

One should probably eliminate pearls from their seaside jewelry repertoire—and from spa day jewelry too, as heat and steam and water can damage them. Delicate stones like emeralds you will want to keep away from salt and sea as well.

 

The easiest way to make a simple black swimsuit feel like summer is to add turquoise or coral.

 

I will always opt for fine, even at the beach. There is something so carefree about it and most fine jewelry is way tougher than most people think. The Cartier love bracelet can withstand all the elements.

 

The female icon who wore it best is Sarah Murphy (Fitzgerald muse) on the beach in the South of France with her pearls dripping down her back. Or Carolina Herrera lounging with just one single perfect gold bangle, an icon of sophisticated world travel.

 

Nothing looks better against tan skin and wet hair than a gorgeous gold hoop.

A Beginner’s Guide to Self Tanning: The FAQs

In the age of skin consciousness, it’s all about faking that natural glow. To ensure yours looks convincingly natural, we asked the ultimate spray tan artist, Anna Stankiewicz, for her tips to getting it right.

How many days before you hit the beach should you get a spray tan?
1 day before the beach; 2 days before an event.

 

How can you avoid the dreaded streaks and spots?
Use an oil-free exfoliator the night or early morning before as oil leaves behind a residue that can prevent the tan from developing evenly. Also, don't apply lotion on the body before the tan—you want a clean canvas.

 

How can you make it last?
Take quick cool showers versus hot ones, and avoid long soaks in the tub! I recommend that people moisturizer daily—adding in a moisturizer with tan extender properties will also help prolong your tan. Do not exfoliate.

 

At home application or in person spray?
If you're going to a major event then you should be always invest in the in person spray experience.

 

Can you ever use a body tanner on your face?
It depends on what type of skin you have.  People with oily and acne skin should avoid using anything meant for the body on their face.

 

Whose solution do you use?
I've tried so many other formulas that didn’t work so I ended up making my own—and I've been using Suvara for the past eight years. It’s the best, hands down.  

Beach Beauty

The details that make the difference.

Hair: Time spent on the beach calls for hair to match (city chic blowouts appear try-hard here). For those looking to keep it simple, renowned hairstylist Odile ­­­­­­­­Gilbert suggests a ponytail “very American” or a braid—perfect for post-swim locks. But what if you want to project that you’ve a finger on the pulse? “The best hair style of the summer is the little chignon,” she says, suggesting for evening to air dry for beach waves.

Nails: The age-old question: red or pink? (anything else harkens back to Hard Candy). We consulted an expert. “Red is the summer color to choose,” says editorial manicurist Jin Soon (who also has a line of polishes and chain of nail spas by the same name). “It’s classic, fun and there is a perfect shade of red for every skin tone.”

The Summer Shape Up
Ensure you’re beach ready with the latest fitness trends in your city.

NEW YORK
Rumble
What: club music meets high intensity boxing
Perfect for: someone who only feels like they’ve worked out only if they’re drenched in sweat
700 Broadway, New York, NY 10003

 

DanceBody
What: a dance class with a fitness focus
Perfect for: someone with rhythm who knows how to catch a beat
51 Warren Street, New York, NY 10007

 

LOS ANGELES
The Wall
What: 1/2 spinning, 1/3 circuit training and a healthy dose of core
Perfect for: the Soulcycle junkie looking for something new
7503 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046

 

LONDON
Virgin Active Hydro Powered by Speedo
What: group swim sets and resistance training
Perfect for: someone looking for an intense, but low impact workout (must love water)
188a Fulham Road, Chelsea, SW10 9PN, London and other locations

 

PARIS
Fit’Ballet
What: classic dancer movements, combined with yoga and pilates
Perfect for: someone who prefers her toning without the sweat
3, Rue d’Hauteville, 75010 Paris