Let's face it, a very small percentage of the female population is built like Malibu Barbie, so come summertime, when invited to a attend a pool, beach or water-related event, anxieties skyrocket at the thought of putting on a swimsuit.

Wearing a bathing suit is essentially like walking around naked and considering how judgmental and delusional our society has become about body image, the thought of parading yourself around in full-blown sunlight among friends or strangers can be as frightening as waking up with a spider on your face.

There are many reasonable options when it comes to covering up which do not involve just wearing a parka and calling it a day.

Ladies, there are options. Put the paper bag you are breathing into down and relax.

The old standby is the good ol' one-piece bathing suit. There are a ton of very stylish and flattering options if you choose this route, so just shop around until you find what works for your body type and camouflages what you consider (but most likely are nowhere near as bad as you think) your problem areas. Some of them can even suck you in enough to give the illusion of a trimmer figure if that's what you're going for.

Unfortunately, I do not foresee any trends coming along for long swim-pants for those who have issues with the appearance of their legs. Short of wearing a wet suit and randomly carrying around a surf board all day at landlocked parties, your covering-up-your-legs options are essentially: wear shorts, wear a sarong or wear a longer, lightweight cover-up.

Now, on to my favorite.

String bikinis aside, don't rule out wearing a two-piece no matter what your body type.

Hey, if you can sport any kind of bikini with confidence, I say more power to you, but for those who would like to stay on the conservative side and leave a little to the imagination, consider a pin-up-inspired, high-waisted bikini.

The main convenience of wearing a bikini, aside from the bragging rights that you are actually wearing a bikini, is that when you have to use the ladies room, you don't have to completely disrobe.

There is nothing worse than peeling off a wet bathing suit driven by an urgency stemming from your bladder. It's just no fun.

Another convenience is getting some sun on your mid-section, although, not too much sun - you should be using sunscreen and monitoring your sun exposure lest you end up looking like a wrinkled-up leather jacket from the 90s after time takes its toll.

Thank goodness for the ever-present retro revival.

The suits inspired by the '50s and '60s take us back to simpler times when, what were considered the most beautiful women in the world, didn't have to show every last inch of their bodies in order to exude sex appeal.

We should take note of how well that worked. Women of all ages still find inspiration in the style of Marilyn Monroe after all this time, but I doubt, in 20 years, you'll see a Lindsay Lohan-inspired swimsuit as an option when shopping.

Three cheers for a little modesty.

(Jenna Wasakoski, a News-Item editor, is a graduate of Von Lee School of Aesthetics and is certified as a professional makeup artist.)