With the hot summer months around the corner, it’s time to start shopping for a killer, trendy wardrobe. And that means trying to get your hands on that perfect swimsuit.

Many women dread shopping for swimwear, and many leave the fitting room empty-handed, frustrated.

But it doesn’t have to be that way, says Canadian actress and supermodel Monika Schnarre. When picking out the swimsuit that bests suits your personality and body type, the first to do is to find something that flatters your assets, she says.

And don’t be afraid to show off your goods — as long as you’re comfortable with it, she adds.

“You know what, you want to accentuate your assets and then cover up your flaws,” Schnarre tells Metro. “So if you’re a little bigger in the hips, you’ll probably want to wear a skirted bottom. If you have children or you’re not comfortable with a bare stomach, you might want to go with a one-piece that has a tummy liner built in.”

With the recent release of the Sea Queen Swimwear Collection 2008, a runway-inspired line, Schnarre says there’s so much variety that there really is something for everyone. And if you’re looking to accentuate your chest, Schnarre recommends the SwimTech ContourLift Bra.

“The swimsuit is actually built around the bra instead of vice versa, and like other suits, where as soon as they get wet they tend to fall off, this one doesn’t,” says Schnarre. “It actually holds its shape ... you could even take off the straps and it’ll stay on.”

Another tip Schnarre says to keep in mind is to try wearing a heel around the pool. This will help elongate the leg. The key is to know your flaws and minimize them. Things such as a tan from a bottle or a spray tan are also great for the summer.

“And accessorizing, with hats and jewelry is fun and adds to your look ... and you especially want to have a great manicure and pedicure,” she says.

Some of this year’s trends include adding belts to your swimsuit, and the empire waist is also popular since it creates the illusion of length and camouflages a bottom-heavy figure or thick waist.

Schnarre says many of the dresses we see on the runway have been translated to swimsuits, such as the empire waist, metallics and animal prints.

“We’re also seeing one-pieces making a huge comeback, with a bit of a throwback to the ‘30s and ‘40s,” she says. “Some of my favourites are the one-pieces; throw on a sarong and it looks like a beautiful summer dress.”

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