March 06, 2017 11:59 AM
Courtesy ModCloth

Tess Holliday has been very open about the struggles of maintaining her career while caring for her 8-month-old son (see her honest and teary-eyed Instagram from last week), but she looks as sexy and confident as ever in her new swimwear shoot for ModCloth, all thanks to the pep talk she gave herself beforehand.

She tells PeopleStyle that before her shoot she pumped herself up by reminding herself that she’s “got this.” Adding, “I had to remind myself that I’ve been through this before and look at all the support around me and remember how lucky I am. Plus my partner Nick [Holliday] always tells me how sexy I am, so that’s not bad for my confidence either.”

Also adding to the excitement of the shoot was working with a brand she’s respected for years. “I wasn’t nervous at all because I’ve worn ModCloth for years and know the fit of their clothing is great,” she says. “I knew I would be in good hands.”

Courtesy ModCloth

One reason she’s such a big fan of the brand is because its swimsuits hit all her bikini requirements. She says when shopping for a good bathing suit, look for “Good support in the cups and a thick band in the top so it doesn’t roll down. I also like bottoms that have some control to them, so they don’t roll down once you get in the water.”

And she suggests staying away from triangle bikini tops with tiny strings in the back if you’re plus-size. “Not all of us have big breasts but we need some kind of coverage and support.”

But most importantly she says the best way to feel confident in a swimsuit is just “owning” what you have.

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If you’re wondering what else Holliday has on-hand for a good beach day, you can always find Coppertone SPF 50, a Fresh tinted lip balm, black Prada cat-eye sunglasses, a beach blanket (“because no one wants sand up there”) and a big Marks & Spencer hat in her bag. And if she’s feeling particularly glam, she’ll add some tinted moisturizer and a red lipstick to kick up her look.

What do you think of Holliday’s new swimwear shoot?

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