Spring is upon us, which means warmer weather and summer shopping are on their way. If you haven’t heard them yet, those 5 dreaded words are right around the corner… “Mom, I need a bathing suit.”

Teen bathing suit shopping can be a nightmare, a hassle, a tragic event, or, believe it or not, a fun mom and daughter get together with life lessons built in!

Here are 10 tips for making the venture fun and successful, for both you and your teenage daughter.

  1. You are not going to agree 100% on style or design.  Come to terms with this now, and your day will go much better.
  2. Listen to you daughter.  Talk about what she is looking for before you head to the mall.  Have an idea of what she wants, and try to balance that with your ideas of what is acceptable/appropriate.
  3. Share your thoughts and opinions (also before you go shopping).  Include thoughts on price, modesty, and practicality in this conversation.
  4. Do some research ahead of time.  Know what the trends are so you can be up to speed and give great, current fashion advice to your daughter.
  5. Make it a girls’ day – include pedicures and a light lunch if possible.  This sets the tone for a fun afternoon, as opposed to a “chore.”
  6. Bring a sense of humor.  Every woman (and teen) runs into issues when bathing suit shopping…don’t be afraid to laugh at appropriate times to lighten the mood and make it more enjoyable.
  7. Listen to your daughter again.  When she is voicing her concerns about her body or the upcoming events where she will be wearing her bathing suit, make sure you hear her.  This is a great way to gain insight into your daughter’s world and into her view of herself.
  8. Be honest.  If something doesn’t look great, it’s okay to tell her.  Be nice and tactful, and gently sway her towards something that will be more flattering.
  9. Compliment her.  Not the typical Mom compliments of “of course you look beautiful.”  Give her some genuine, specific compliments.  “Your legs are so toned and healthy from soccer, they look great in that cut of bathing suit.”  “That color looks amazing with your hair and eyes…it really complements your look!”  You can always find something to encourage her, increase her confidence, and boost her self-esteem.
  10. Have fun.  Keep the right attitude and just enjoy each other.