Canyon Beachware is no secret as a bikini destination, but it’s one of the most knowledgeable shops for women who really want a bikini that fits. Launched in the 1970s, it’s a closet-size space in Santa Monica Canyon where, next to the cash register, stood Patricia Egan — whose daughter, Kathleen Mudd, began working in the store when she was in junior high school and years later purchased it. Other vendors carry some of the same lines, but Canyon Beachware offers a wide-ranging mix-and-match of top and bottom sizes that allows each woman to piece together the right bikini for her body. Egan likes Swim System, which features great bottoms for surfing, tops that come in bra styles for the busty or halter styles for the flat-chested, and hardware that lies flat within wetsuits. She also endorses Voda for great bottoms and Melissa Odabash for femininity and durability. If you’re going to surf in a bikini, among the sizing tricks is to purchase one size too small, and buy stretchy fabrics. Always do this dressing room test: Drop into a squat, and if you get a “wedgie” say aloha! and move on to the next one. Canyon Beach at 106 Entrada Drive, Santa Monica. (310) 459-5070, —Tibby Rothman

LA Weekly