Swimsuit Confidence Week with Lands’ End and a Giveaway

WLands End Swimsuit Confidence Dayant to find me at the pool or beach? Let the picture on the right be your guide. At least, it would have been in 2011: floppy sun hat and oversized cover-up. But last winter I dropped a few pounds and more recently I was selected to participate in Lands’ End and SELF Magazine’s 2nd annual Swimsuit Confidence Week.

Swimsuit Confidence Week spurs dialog to help women of all shapes and sizes feel confident and beautiful so they can enjoy all summer has to offer.

Um, okay, beautiful might be a stretch. In my mid-40’s, I think more about acceptance- the faded stretch marks, scars, freckles, wrinkles, and skin that while not sagging, just isn’t as taut as it used to be. These are the chapters and footnotes in the story of me.

I’m still here living my story, aware of what a privilege it is to doing so.

Painfully aware.

So though it’s tempting to consider an eye lift, a boob lift or whatever surgery helps disguise the effects of gravity and aging, can’t we just celebrate the joy of being alive and work to be our healthiest selves instead of pretending we’re still 25?

That said, I’d love to wake up Freaky-Friday style inside my 20-something-year-old body. I know from old photos that I wasn’t as fat as I thought, plus my hair was fuller and skin clearer. I would ban all thoughts of bodily insecurity (and maybe exercise a bit more).

I wasn’t exactly a shrinking violet back then. I mean, I spent a summer as an intern at a dolphin cognition research facility in Hawaii and went to work in a bathing suit. Every Day. But I generally had a negative body image from junior high school on up.


Earlier this year one of my friends proclaimed that while committed to healthy living, she refused to spend any more time obsessing over her body.

I appreciate her sentiment. Like many of my mid-life peers, I’ve wasted days (weeks?) over the course of my lifetime worrying about my weight, the size of my ____ (fill in any one of numerous body parts). Enough of that thinking, let’s move on to something more affirmative, more productive.

It’s no longer a battle to fit into skinny jeans or a size 0 (Seriously, what the hell is a size 0, anyway? Who made that up?), it’s about being healthy and staying fit so that 20 years from now I can not only hang out at the pool with my grandkids, but swim and splash alongside them.

Lands End Swimsuit Confidence

Lands End Self magazine Swimsuit confidence week

Okay, I doubt I’ll be posing like that anywhere but on our deck. I’ll probably look more like this:

Swimsuit Confidence Week 2012 Lands' End SELF Magazine

I can’t see much without my glasses and it’s hard to lose the floppy hat. I’m trying to protect my aging and ever sensitive skin. That summer in Hawaii followed by a summer in Israel, not to mention the fact that people slathered themselves in tanning oil, not sunscreen, when I was a kid, means I got all the sun my face ever needs.

Boost your swimsuit confidence with a new swimsuit compliments of Lands’ End!

To enter:

1. (Required) Comment once on this blog sharing a tip to boost swimsuit confidence or letting me know what bathing suit you’d pick if you win. Comment by 11:00 PM CST on May 29, 2012 for a basic entry. US addresses only. No purchase necessary to win, but the winner must be 18 years of age. The prize has a retail value of roughly up to $150.

You can also have up to four optional extra entries; I need a separate comment for each of these items, so I can count each one as an extra entry:

2. Tweet about the entry and come back to let me know you did.

3. “Like” Reluctant Renovator on Facebook and come back to let me know.

4. Subscribe to our newsletter, Progress Notes. We send updates every now and then featuring favorite tidbits from the blog as well as tips on home product finds and giveaways. Come back to let me know.

5. Subscribe to my YouTube Channel so you can keep up with Reluctant Renovator video blogs.

6. Follow @RenovatorKim on Twitter.

Winner will be chosen and notified by June 2, 2012 and will have two days to respond to me. If no response if received, a new winner will be chosen. Prize will be fulfilled by the Lands’ End PR team.

Lands’ End will also be hosting giveaways Twitter this week. Search the #LandsEnd hastag to play along. And check out the Swimsuit Sweeps on the Lands’ End Facebook Page.

Our model, Kim, is wearing a Women’s Petite Beach Living Princess  Tankini Top in Riviera Rose and the Beach Living Floral Swim Mini in Riviera Rose Floral. Lands’ End swimsuits come in a wide variety of sizes to fit bodies from small to tall, from A to DD and even mastectomy suits. Lands’ End swimsuit specialists are available for online chat and phone calls to help you find the right suit. Customer reviews of items listed on the site also help you pin down your selection.

Lands’ End provided me with the swimsuit of my choice to facilitate my participation in Swimsuit Confidence Week.

103 Responses to Swimsuit Confidence Week with Lands’ End and a Giveaway
  1. Susan Wenner Jackson
    May 21, 2012 | 10:00 am

    I think being tan helps you feel more confident in a swimsuit — IF you normally have super-pale-white skin like I do. (And by “tan,” I mean fake tan, either by spray or cream or whatever means you prefer that does not cause skin cancer.)

  2. Susan Wenner Jackson
    May 21, 2012 | 10:04 am

    I tweeted, already like you on FB, and subscribed on YouTube.

  3. Lisa
    May 21, 2012 | 10:13 am

    Love your suit!

  4. Jen
    May 21, 2012 | 10:16 am

    I love that swimsuit and would probably pick something very similar. I like a two-piece that covers things up, and being tall…well…one-piece suits tend to be mean to me. 😉
    And I’m already following you pretty much everywhere. LOL

  5. Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy Oh Boy
    May 21, 2012 | 10:17 am

    I LOVE your suit but I am not quite ready for the world of tankini’s so I’d pick this super cute swimdress!
    Women’s Beach Living Batik Dot Twist Front Swimdress

  6. Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy Oh Boy
    May 21, 2012 | 10:18 am

    Follow @RenovatorKim on Twitter

  7. Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy Oh Boy
    May 21, 2012 | 10:18 am

    “Like” Reluctant Renovator on Facebook

  8. Angela
    May 21, 2012 | 10:21 am

    As a very pale person who has already had numerous biopsies for cellular skin improvisations, what gives me confidence are gorgeous gauzy coverups–Lands End has several that fit the bill. No one SEES my suit til after the most intense hours of sun are over, and I go for maximum number of square inches in a strategically cut suit.

  9. Marketing Mommy
    May 21, 2012 | 10:25 am

    What gives me confidence in a swimsuit? Sucking in my belly and hanging out a suburban pool (or better yet, a Wisconsin indoor water park) instead of a CA beach. It’s all about feeling hotter than average vs bottom of the barrel.

  10. Marketing Mommy
    May 21, 2012 | 10:25 am

    I like you and follow you 🙂

  11. Rachel (Hounds in the Kitchen)
    May 21, 2012 | 10:37 am

    I find that a suit that fits – one that doesn’t give me a wedgie or make me self concious about the top falling off when I swim – gives me lots of confidence. I ignore the sizes (and the discrepancy that I’m a lot bigger on bottom than top!) and go for the best comfortable fit when trying on suits.

  12. Melanie
    May 21, 2012 | 10:45 am

    I think one important tip to having a suit that flatters is making sure you get the right fit. Too big may be more comfortable, but isn’t flattering, too small…well, you know the problem(s) there! (Really a good idea for moms not to have things popping out of a too small suit!)

  13. Melanie
    May 21, 2012 | 10:46 am

    i subscribe to reluctant renovator on youtube (mmmyatt1)

  14. Melanie
    May 21, 2012 | 10:47 am

    i subscribe to your newsletter…

  15. Melanie
    May 21, 2012 | 10:49 am

    i like you on facebook…

  16. Melanie
    May 21, 2012 | 10:49 am

    i follow you on twitter (@mmmyatt)

  17. Sarah Auerswald
    May 21, 2012 | 10:51 am

    You look very confident indeed!

  18. kimberly/tippytoes
    May 21, 2012 | 10:54 am

    I have a similar Lands End suit and I love, love, love it. I wouldn’t go to the beach or pool without it!

  19. Jessica
    May 21, 2012 | 10:56 am

    Your suit is so cute. My suggestion is to shop for a suit that fits well. As a larger lady, I’ve never felt confident in my suit, but got a two piece for the first time with my last pregnancy (easier for frequent bathroom trips) A modest tank and cute shorts were more flattering than I ever thought! I think I’d choose Women’s Regular Solid Carmela One Piece Slender Suit since it offers a higher neckline and underwire! SOOOO hard to find in a suit this SAHM can afford.

  20. Jessica
    May 21, 2012 | 10:56 am

    Long time FB follower.

  21. Kristina
    May 21, 2012 | 10:57 am

    Tips for feeling swimsuit confidence? Ugh, you might be asking the wrong person. But I’d say take the time to find a suit that fits correctly and buy whatever one makes you look best (even if you have to suck up high price tag).

    Two years ago, I bought a one-piece black swimsuit from Lands End. It had kind of a retro vibe. I got a lot of compliments.

    If I won, I’d probably select a tankini like yours, only in a darker color, as I’ve been told that pink washes me out, LOL.

  22. Jessica
    May 21, 2012 | 11:00 am

    I subscribe to the newsletter.

  23. Kristina
    May 21, 2012 | 11:01 am

    I tweeted.

  24. Kristina
    May 21, 2012 | 11:02 am

    I already do all the other bonus entry opportunities

  25. Jessica
    May 21, 2012 | 11:02 am

    I work out quite a bit and have my whole life. Even being in good shape wasn’t enough to make me feel confident in a bathing suit. Well, the joy of being over 40 is that you no longer care what others think. I’ve been rocking the two piece bathing suit these last few years and if anyone doesn’t like it they can suck it. < see what I mean? Age has its bonuses. xo

  26. Stephanie Precourt
    May 21, 2012 | 11:36 am

    Kim, you look great!! You don’t have to enter me. Just had to tell you that!!


  27. jodi adams
    May 21, 2012 | 11:37 am

    I love the
    Lands’ End Women’s Plus Size Ocean Beach Tropical Floral Print Bandeau One Piece Swimsuit

  28. jodi adams
    May 21, 2012 | 11:38 am

    like you on facebook

  29. jodi adams
    May 21, 2012 | 11:38 am

    follow you on twitter

  30. jodi adams
    May 21, 2012 | 11:39 am
  31. Katrina
    May 21, 2012 | 12:52 pm

    I always think a nice pair of sunglasses to go with your bathing suit can really boost that poolside swimsuit confidence.

  32. Carolyn West
    May 21, 2012 | 2:18 pm

    I think the more confidence you have in a swimsuit (despite how you look in it) the better your posture is, the better your smile is and the better you end up looking in it as well. I so admire the people at the pool and beach who walk around not giving their image a second thought. I so want to be that kind of woman.

  33. Carolyn West
    May 21, 2012 | 2:20 pm

    I follow Reluctant Renovator on Facebook.

  34. Carolyn West
    May 21, 2012 | 2:21 pm

    I subscribe to your newsletter “Progress Notes”.

  35. Carolyn West
    May 21, 2012 | 2:22 pm

    I follow on twitter. (@temysmom)

  36. Carolyn West
    May 21, 2012 | 2:22 pm

    Put me down for following on YouTube as well.

  37. Michelle
    May 21, 2012 | 2:32 pm

    I love this! My suit tip is to find something that is designed for whatever area you’re looking to highlight or hide. There are SO many suits out there with so many different attributes, so it’s easier to find the right one (especially from places like Lands End where they tell you upfront what the suits are designed to do.

    PS You look awesome!

  38. Michelle
    May 21, 2012 | 2:33 pm

    I like you on FB 🙂

  39. Michelle
    May 21, 2012 | 2:33 pm

    Annnnnd I subscribe to your email newsletter.

  40. Michelle
    May 21, 2012 | 2:33 pm

    Oh, and I follow you on Twitter, too. But you knew that already 😉

  41. Holly
    May 21, 2012 | 6:55 pm

    I’d love the Tankini Top
    $50.00 – $60.00
    Raspberry Rose
    Raspberry Rose
    Women’s Beach Living V-neck Tankini Top !

  42. Holly
    May 21, 2012 | 6:59 pm

    I have liked, followed and subscribed all your channels!

  43. DrLori71
    May 21, 2012 | 7:00 pm

    I love the color of your suit. If I win, I’ll probably get the same color.

  44. Asianmommy
    May 21, 2012 | 8:19 pm

    Cute suit! I would pick the Beach Living Batik Dot Adjustable Scoop Tankini in Tide Pool Aqua Dot.

  45. megryansmom
    May 21, 2012 | 9:58 pm

    Being tan, ok, a darker shade of pasty white, always makes me feel better in a bathing suit.

  46. megryansmom
    May 21, 2012 | 9:59 pm

    I like RR on FB

  47. megryansmom
    May 21, 2012 | 10:00 pm

    I subscribe to your newsletter 🙂

  48. megryansmom
    May 21, 2012 | 10:00 pm

    I follow on twitter @megryansmom

  49. megryansmom
    May 21, 2012 | 10:01 pm

    Subscribed to your YouTube Channel

  50. Karen (@mom-mom-mom)
    May 22, 2012 | 8:27 am

    You look super-duper cute in that adorable pink suit! I have been wearing the Lands End skirt bathing suit bottoms for 12 years and it’s the only way that I feel confident at the pool. It covers up areas that no one needs to see, tucks in my belly and works with a bunch of different tops. I already follow you on Twitter and the newsletter, but I liked your FB page and subscribed to You Tube. Enjoy the summer as your sassy self!

  51. Karen (@mom-mom-mom)
    May 22, 2012 | 8:29 am

    Oops — and retweeted!

  52. Rita
    May 22, 2012 | 8:40 am

    I feel most comfortable and confident in a suit that fits well for my body type!

  53. Rita
    May 22, 2012 | 8:41 am

    I “Like” you on Facebook!

  54. Rita
    May 22, 2012 | 8:50 am

    I “Follow” you on Twitter!

  55. Laura Frisch
    May 22, 2012 | 10:14 am

    OK, I love that suit on you so much I want one too…maybe in blue for me? I went to the Youtube and signed up!

  56. Laura Frisch
    May 22, 2012 | 10:15 am

    So, I love that suit so much and didn’t even realize I could get your insight right in my inbox that I just went and signed up for your newsletter/blog…(That’s two entries right;)?

  57. Laura Frisch
    May 22, 2012 | 10:19 am

    And finally, here are my thoughts about bathing suits and being 40 and not in the shape I’d hope to be in. I am giving myself a challenge too. Started yesterday, eating more fruits & veggies, skipping the white stuff(bread, rice, marshmallow fluff…you get the idea) and drinking my water!!! Also cutting out those mocha latte’s I discovered this past winter, didn’t have them the past 42 years, why would I need them now? You are an inspiration to be healthy and happy with who I am, and yes, I wish I could tell 16 year old me, “You are beautiful, with a great size 8 body, and long thick hair…don’t worry about pimples they will fade and you will still be fabulous inside and out.” I can at least tell my 11 year old daughter these things, if she’d listen. Thanks Kim and I think this is entry number 3? Oh, if I don’t win it, I’ll just have to go to the Inlet and buy it!!!

  58. Cara @ CaraRolinson.com
    May 22, 2012 | 10:26 am

    I feel the best way to boost your confidence in a bathing suit is to workout and believe in yourself. A little reassurance from your husband can also go a long way too though!

  59. Cara @ CaraRolinson.com
    May 22, 2012 | 10:28 am

    I already liked your page, hopefully that counts 😉

  60. Cara @ CaraRolinson.com
    May 22, 2012 | 10:29 am

    I subscribed to YouTube

  61. Cara @ CaraRolinson.com
    May 22, 2012 | 10:29 am

    I signed up for your newsletter

  62. Tricia Nightowlmama
    May 22, 2012 | 4:50 pm

    Picking the right swimsuit line and fit like the one’s Lands End that offers fantastic fitting swimsuits in all the right places to give you the nip and tuck that you need to feel good in a swimsuit

  63. ashley
    May 23, 2012 | 6:29 pm

    I’m torn between the Women’s Regular Floral Beach Print Tankini Top ( safe choice) or Women’s SwimMates Dot Print Bandeau Bikini Top.

  64. ashley
    May 23, 2012 | 6:30 pm

    I follow @RenovatorKim on Twitter giveawayjunkie

  65. […] as part of Swimsuit Confidence Week and a blogaversary celebration, I’m giving away a Lands’ End swimsuit. And learn how you can win a dreamy Serta Mattress set. Related […]

  66. veronica
    May 24, 2012 | 10:54 am

    I’m commenting & I liked you on FB!

    Confidence? Perhaps I’m getting to an age where my confidence is wrapped up in “F’em!” Also a great suit that fits well, doesn’t tug and a cute cover-up. Maybe 60% the first part and 40% the other.

  67. Stacie
    May 24, 2012 | 11:34 am

    I love Pink so I would choose the swimsuit you have on- Women’s Regular Beach Living Princess Tankini Top. Although there were many others that were very cute.

  68. Stacie
    May 24, 2012 | 11:35 am

    I like you on facebook.

  69. Stacie
    May 24, 2012 | 11:38 am

    I follow you on twitter.

  70. Stacie
    May 24, 2012 | 11:40 am

    I subscribe to your youtube page – thecouponsista/ Staciesayzso

  71. Naomi
    May 24, 2012 | 1:43 pm

    Learning to be comfortable with where you’re at instead of where you’ve been or are trying to get to make life a whole lot easier, I find. (I remember avoiding wearing a bathing suit most of the time I lived in Austin but recently came across a photo taken at Hamilton Pool and, uh, I look about a million trillion times better in a bathing suit than I do now. Talk about missed opportunity!) That being said, attitude is half the battle. My favorite thing about Lands End suits is that they stay on, even when you’re actually swimming or have a couple of kids tugging on you. That provides some serious swimsuit confidence these days!

  72. Angela England
    May 25, 2012 | 1:00 am

    By far the single most confidence boosting thing for me is to slick on some lip color and SMILE! 🙂

    I love the suit. You look fabulous and that red color is great on you.

    Angela <

  73. Natasha @ Houseful Of Nicholes
    May 25, 2012 | 9:42 am

    As a person who grew up in an ultra conservative house (as far as clothing went) exposing my body was a BIG no-no! For me, it took having children for me to gain the confidence to don my first ever bikini (and I do NOT have a bikini body) on a cruise with my husband. The fact that I didn’t know anyone else there but him, helped a lot, but I stepped out of my comfort zone and just went. Now this year, I’m looking forward to picking up several more swimming suits and having fun! The tankini is super cute and kudos to you for stepping out!

  74. Natasha @ Houseful Of Nicholes
    May 25, 2012 | 9:45 am

    I follow you on twitter (@HFofNicholes)

  75. Natasha @ Houseful Of Nicholes
    May 25, 2012 | 9:46 am

    I’ve subscribed to your You Tube channel.

  76. Natasha @ Houseful Of Nicholes
    May 25, 2012 | 10:08 am

    I liked your page on FB as well.

  77. Kim Spencer
    May 25, 2012 | 1:00 pm

    For me, working out at Curves has boosted my bathing suit confidence this summer. While I have only dropped 8 pounds since last September, the flabby, perimenopausal trouble spots are being replaced with muscle which makes me feel better about my body. I LOVE the suit you are wearing in the photo and would pick out something similar if I won!

  78. meredith
    May 25, 2012 | 1:11 pm

    so many great suits! i would choose the Women’s Beach Living Dot Twist Tankini!

  79. meredith
    May 25, 2012 | 1:12 pm

    i like Reluctant Renovator on Facebook

  80. meredith
    May 25, 2012 | 1:13 pm

    i Subscribed to your YouTube Channel

  81. meredith
    May 25, 2012 | 1:15 pm
  82. meredith
    May 25, 2012 | 1:15 pm

    i Follow @RenovatorKim on Twitter.

  83. Carmen
    May 25, 2012 | 7:15 pm

    I commented and it’s poof! gone! I think you look amazing. And you are a very brave woman!

  84. Carmen
    May 25, 2012 | 7:16 pm

    And I liked the Reluctant Renovator already on the Book of Face!

  85. Jenny
    May 26, 2012 | 3:18 pm

    I’d choose the Batik Dot tankini with the shirred swimmini. I just bought my first LE mix/match suit and am in love!

  86. Jenny
    May 26, 2012 | 3:19 pm

    I now follow you on Twitter, too. (@Jennandtonica)

  87. Julie
    May 27, 2012 | 8:21 am
  88. Julie
    May 27, 2012 | 8:22 am

    like u on fb Julie A Scott Laws

  89. Julie
    May 27, 2012 | 8:23 am

    email subscsriber

  90. lace
    May 27, 2012 | 10:05 pm

    I’d probably choose the Women’s Beach Living Leaves Print V-neck Tankini Top or the Women’s Beach Living Adjustable Scoopneck Tankini Top

  91. Laptop TV Mom
    May 29, 2012 | 5:18 pm

    Honestly, I am a 41-year-old who wears a bikini. I am tall, and most one-pieces are not comfortable for me, and a tankini usually cuts me at the belly (which does not look good). SO, I wear my bikini with pride… and invest in coverups that I love. I play in the pool with my kiddo… and look stylish in a cute coverup around the parents. Win-win! 🙂

  92. Brandie
    May 29, 2012 | 5:18 pm

    First, you look lovely in your suit! I love that color on you! =)

    Second, I have no tips for bathing suit confidence. I can tell you life is too short to worry about how you look in a swim suit, and at the end of this journey, people will remember what you did with them, not how you looked (even if you are internally obsessing about how you look). That said, bathing suits and I are not friends this summer, but I will say Lands’ End has BY FAR the best (and affordable) choices of mastectomy suits. And that is something I greatly appreciate! =)

  93. jodifur
    May 29, 2012 | 5:46 pm

    I like this one-


  94. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 5:53 pm

    I love the Women’s Regular Squareneck Slender Suit Swimdress.

    My e-mail: blackasphodel(at)yahoo(dot)com

  95. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 5:54 pm
  96. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 5:55 pm

    I liked Reluctant Renovator on Facebook as Black Asphodel

  97. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 5:56 pm

    I subscribed to our newsletter as blackasphodel(at)yahoo(dot)com

  98. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 5:57 pm

    I subscribed to your YouTube Channel as BlackAsphodel

  99. BlackAsphodel
    May 29, 2012 | 6:03 pm

    I follow @RenovatorKim on Twitter as @BlackAsphodel

  100. Jen
    May 29, 2012 | 8:52 pm

    I liked Reluctant Renovator on FB.

  101. Jen
    May 29, 2012 | 8:54 pm

    I love that swimsuit on you! If I could find one that like and it fit, I would definitely wear that style.