| 9.8°C Dublin

At 39, women should stop wearing bikinis

Women should stop wearing bikinis around the pool at the age of 39, a new poll suggests.

Seven out of 10 think women are too old to wear a two-piece at they approach 40. But when those over the age of 50 were asked, 60pc disagreed, saying that women should carry on wearing bikinis into their mature years.

The poll questioned 2,000 people and, of the over-50s questioned, 16.8pc said their age had not put them off buying revealing swimwear. However, many still felt self-conscious when buying such items, with 13.2pc saying they hate the idea of trying one on in a shop changing room.

A further 9.8pc said they felt self-conscious talking to a young shop assistant about buying a bikini while 43.7pc claimed most designs were too skimpy and did not offer the right support or a flattering cut.

But perhaps older women can take encouragement from celebrities such as Helen Mirren, who wore a red bikini on holiday in 2008 at the age of 63 and Marie Helvin, the former supermodel who still shows off her figure on the beach at the age of 59.

Helvin, who says she has only just found the confidence to wear a two-piece after 10 years of covering up on holiday said: "Who says women should be denied the right to wear a bikini just because of their age? It's not as though the only options out there are tiny string bikinis -- there is so much choice now for women.