Let's Talk About

Get Real

6 years ago by

Get Real

Have you ever worn a wetsuit?
If you have, you know that putting it on and taking it off is the anti-thesis of chic.
Firstly, it’s nothing like a Gilles Bensimon photoshoot. (And I definitely don’t look like Gisele!)

It’s more like when you rediscover those jeans from college and try to put them on. (“Just suck in!!”)(Not pretty.) You’re basically a human sausage, trying to squeeze your body into a casing two sizes too small.

I’m learning how to surf, like G, and she’s right — it’s the ultimate style detox.
But it’s the wetsuit that I dread the most.

Not falling off my board, or screaming as a fleet of cool surfers cruise by; it’s squishing my behind through the unforgiving confines of a seal costume that makes me the most anxious. It, quite literally, takes my breath away (since, in it, I can barely breathe, it’s so tight).

And taking it off? Who knows if your bikini will stay on, or maybe your wetsuit will drag your top or bottoms off to reveal a butt cheek or a little more than sideboob.

It forces you to get REAL about your body. But also be more accepting of it. It makes me want stronger arms, to paddle harder with, and it’s teaching me how to strip bare in terms of beauty.

Have you ever found yourself in that position, where you’ve had to completely let go? Just be faced with the least attractive version of yourself – and love her as she is?


Add yours
  • Heather June, 16 2015, 3:59 / Reply

    All the time! I scuba dive—the wetsuit, mask face—and it’s much the same. It’s just YOU out there, nothing glamorous. But it’s so much fun, who cares?

  • I hate wetsuits they make me feel so cold and uncomfortable


  • Comme souvent, la réalité n’est pas aussi sexy et glamour qu’on veut bien nous le faire croire ! J’ai une combi de surf (car je m’y suis mise, l’été dernier) mais, surtout, j’ai maintenant une combinaison de nage en open water. La combi de surf, c’est déjà saucisse style assuré, mais alors, la combi de triathlon !!! C’est un niveau encore au-dessus. C’est tellement, tellement serré qu’il faut 10 minutes pour l’enfiler. D’ailleurs, quand je suis allée l’acheter, j’ai vécu un petit moment de solitude. Je m’acharnais dessus pour essayer de rentrer dedans. Mes fesses ne passaient pas. J’ai dû appeler le vendeur, la combi remontée jusqu’au bas des fesses, culotte (bien évidemment, pas la plus sexy) à l’air… pour lui demander si, vraiment, il pensait pas que je m’étais plantée de taille. Mais non, ça doit être serré et faire ventouse sur la peau !

  • Jane with the noisy terrier June, 16 2015, 5:03 / Reply

    I’ve got one for scuba diving but it’s thin nylon not neopryene – no less forgiving but at least it’s easier to take on and off!

  • I do lots of triathlons and there is nothing uglier than your race photos after swimming in usually not so clean water, biking with a goofy helmet and running in the intense heat….all of this in a very unflattering tri suit.

  • Amanda June, 16 2015, 6:14 / Reply

    Have you seen these wetsuits Garance? Designed by a surfer/model. http://abysseofficial.com

  • If your wetsuit is super dried out its really hard to put on. When there is moisture in it you won’t have to struggle as much. I’ve also found that if you put lotion on your body and your wetsuit is a little damp it will slide on with ease! However zipping it up is a whole other story :).

  • I started cycling (road race style) three years ago. I was very conscious of the body-skimming (or squeezing) tights, I mean, for a person who doesn’t even like to wear regular shorts… But what do you know, today I’m perfectly happy to put on a cycling bodysuit in broad daylight, even thought I would never be comfortable wearing a playsuit even on a dimmest evening! Sports… I just love what my body is capable of.

  • Katerina C June, 17 2015, 12:48 / Reply

    Yes, the two times I was giving birth. I adore my body ever since. For all the people that are dying, can’t move, I respect what my body is and can do every day. I don’t take any day of health for granted.

  • muswellmummy June, 17 2015, 11:16

    I completely agree with you – giving birth shows you just how amazing the female body is. I too try not to take movement and health for granted. It’s in your mid-forties with friends beginning to die that you stop worrying about how you look so much and start living. Beauty and self-consciousness are the blessing and curse of youth.

  • Amen!

  • Clotilde June, 17 2015, 2:03 / Reply

    Of course, it happens everytime I am doing a long race in the mountains. On race pix I see my tights bigger than usual, swollen by the long effort, or my belly also swollen by the liters of hydration fluids I drank on the way, I look very pretty ! But I don’t care, my smile usually saves it all !

  • Oh yes, many times. The most dramatic one was when I was giving birth to my child. It didn’t matter how I look, but I only realized how dreadfully I looked after that ;)


  • I think that we can’t be overthinking all the time about your body. You can surf and that’s wonderful, Just enjoy the moment. By the way Neada, what is the brand of that gorgeous wetsuit ? Thanks

  • Cécile June, 17 2015, 4:03 / Reply

    En un mot : running.

  • surf and yoga…
    -surf: creme ultra proctectrice (et collante) beige clair + cheveux en vrac = tête de sorcière vaudou moulée dans une combi pretée donc pas très seyante
    -yoga (asthanga dans un pays chaud) + rougeaude, pleine de bleu, trempée de sueur (on dirait que nous sortons de la piscine)
    heureusement les copines sont dans le même état, on en rigole…

  • Beuve Lise June, 17 2015, 5:35 / Reply

    Quelqu’un sait d’où vient cette combinaison incroyable???

  • Yes, during and after the birth of my twin girls. I know it’s supposed to be beautiful, but 2 days of labor just doesn’t add up to a whole lot of beautiful. But, despite looking back at photos and thinking “yeesh!”, I really didn’t think twice about it at the time.

  • Caroline June, 17 2015, 11:57 / Reply

    I scuba dive quite a bit, you have to wear a totally unsexy suit (plus the mask, plus the palms…) but it’s so cool, you don’t care – at all. Total bliss.

  • I loved the story ” Get Real ” It is exactly the reason that my partner and I started our company. Getting in and out of that medieval torture device know as a wetsuit is truly humbling and getting out is particularly daunting at times. If you are truly interested in surfing and making the wetsuit dance a more pleasant event, I’d love to send you a sample or two of our SlipIn SurfSkins and Minis. You’ll find that these items change the entire perspective towards fear and loathing for the wetsuit. They also go a long way to helping you feel much better about how you look and feel. If you’re interested please let me know at [email protected] and I’ll be happy to send you some samples. Go to our website (www.slipins.com) and find a pattern or two that you like and we’ll get it off to you.

    Rick Rickman

  • I think that strong, exercising, sweating, determined, grimacing women look beautiful. Accomplishing something doesn’t make you the “least attractive version of yourself.”.
    I agree with the ladies who said giving birth; those are the most hideous pictures there are of me and I couldn’t be prouder of them.
    Women are more than their appearance. And, you’ll find that no-one cares a fraction of what you care. Enjoy surfing, Neada!!

  • OMG I can’t believe how this spoke to ME. I began surfing not long ago in the cold Pacific waters, would be in tears getting in and out of the damn wetsuit. I can so relate to your very descriptive sausage analogy. After about 3 times, I remembered an old catsuit from my workout days back in the 80s, put the old thing on, then got into my wetsuit and VOILA! What a difference it made. Long story short, we have started a new company just to answer the prays and swears from women all over the world with the exact same issues as you so graphically share. Our beautiful, colorful prints not only make it so much easier to get in and out of the wetsuit, but it also has 60+spf, so when you don’t need a wetsuit, you can just look so darn cute and have your body sun protected. Quickly it was not just the surfers wearing our SlipIns SurfSkins, but also the stand up paddlers and now the scuba ladies-actually any water sport! Check out http://www.slipins.com, and let us send you some to try out. You will love them, and love how you look in them.
    [email protected]

  • True! There is nothing remotely glamorous in putting on the wetsuit. Or taking it off (even worse!!).

  • Mathilde June, 20 2015, 11:42 / Reply

    Bon, ça ne va peut-être pas aider à mettre un peu de sexy dans cette entreprise utopiste qu’est de rentrer en moins de dix minutes dans sa combi de surf MAIS le liquide vaisselle, ça aide bien.
    Oui, on se dandine ET on sent le Paic.
    Mais ça aide bien.


  • alfredo ciano June, 23 2015, 8:57 / Reply

    Amazin’ Image : A Girl on the Waves of the Ocean !!! Get Real ? In the Life ( for me ) It’ s Important the Real Truth…

From the Archives

Holiday Gifting
  • Holiday Gifting
  • This or That
  • Happy Holidays!
  • #AtelierDoreDoes
  • How To...
Last Minute Gifts

Last Minute Gifts

A Gift Guide for Him

A Gift Guide for Him

A Gift Guide for Her

A Gift Guide for Her

Hill City: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Hill City: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Deb Watson’s Guide to Gifting

Deb Watson’s Guide to Gifting

The Gift of Giving Gifts

The Gift of Giving Gifts

lessons in gifting steven alan presents expert series garance dore photos

Lessons In… Gifting