I've already made my thoughts on tanning known (stay in the shade, use a high SPF and fake it instead) but if you do have skin that tans easily and want to risk baking yourself this year but don't plan on going topless, you'll want a bikini that doesn't give you all kinds of strapmarks and white patches.

This is where the bandeau comes in. Though it's probably not the best choice for well-endowed ladies (unless you're a model with mysteriously perky (read: fake) breasts) a strapless choice will cover up where needed without leaving white lines. Marks and Spencer offer surprising value with their polka dot separates on the left; the strapless top and hipster bottoms are £6 each, and there's also a balconette top for more support and a wrap skirt for more coverage if you fancy them. Meanwhile in the US the classic slider bikini from Ujena (right) has a flattering twisted middle to give a more curvy look (avoiding that 'shelf' effect you risk with boob tube style tops. It's $68 in a huge variety of colours, and you can pick separate sizes for tops and bottoms.