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Bask In The Luxury Of This Proudly Filipino Swimsuit Brand

In a tropical country like ours, we could always use a new set of swimwear. Nab these jewel-inspired pieces created by Pinay beauty queens.

In a tropical country such as ours, summer is never really over. The weather may turn wet and gloomy, but once the storms pass, there's always a reason to seek warmer shores at one of our many sun-drenched beaches (especially for June brides about to go on a honeymoon in some luxurious island). But, to get really high-quality swimsuits that will last you the whole year-round, you'd often have to splurge on expensive, imported brands that go well past a working (or studying) girl's budget. Two Filipina beauty queens have just the solution for this fashion dilemma.

Maggie Wilson-Consunji (Bb. Pilipinas-World 2007) and Sandra Seifert (Miss Philippines Earth 2009) have released their own online swimwear company called Solara, which recently held its official Cebu launch at Shangri-La Mactan. The name Solara, whose root word means "sun" in Spanish, evokes the high-class appeal of the brand that boasts of affordable luxury for regular gals. Both girls have no background in fashion design or business, yet were passionate about pursuing something that would cater to all modern Filipinas. As Maggie explains, "We are dedicating this line to every type of woman out there—whether you have fair or dark skin, a petite or curvy body, a sporty or feminine personality."

The girls, who create all their own retro designs, are adamant about the quality of their pieces. They have their fabrics tailormade for them and tested in sunlight and water for durability, elasticity, and color fastness. There's no need to worry about your bikinis fraying after one too many washes or going see-through once you get into the water!

The Basics Collection is awash in jewel tones that complement a variety of skin tones. The matte-metallic finish is uniform throughout the line, so you can mix and match the pieces for unique looks each time you head out to swim! Maggie says of the Basic Collection, "We believe that every girl should have—like a little black dress—a little black swimsuit. A little basic swimsuit that they can not only wear just once or twice, but they can wear five to ten years from now and still look fashionable."

A Limited Edition Sparkle Collection has also been released, with each handmade piece adorned with lightweight, non-staining, non-fade plastic beads for that extra shine in the sun. This collection is especially perfect for June brides with beach weddings! Their collections are updated every six months to ensure the latest in beach fashion for Filipinas.

Both ladies have taken their past experiences as beauty queens to heart, electing to represent the country with this homegrown brand. Sandra says, "We really want to build [Solara] as a Filipino brand. When we do have a store in the future, our goal is to have a flagship store in Manila." She reveals that Solara will be dressing the top 10 finalists of the Miss Philippines Earth competition on June 5 in Puerto Princesa!

Their exposure to various charities during their time as beauty queens also had a huge impact on the way they run their business. A percentage of each Solara collection goes to a chosen charity, the first and current beneficiary being Child House—a children's shelter for cancer patients. Sandra says, "Miss Earth is very, very involved with charity work, and it just kind of became second nature for me."

The fashion show at Cebu showcased pieces from both the Basics and Sparkle Collections. A combination of models and real girls of different body shapes demonstrated that Solara really does suit practically any body type. The brand is a hit among celebs as well. Among their famous customers are Iza Calzado, Megan Young, Bubbles Paraiso, Bianca King, Jennylyn Mercado, and Cosmo Cover Girl Solenn Heusaff!

Hint: These luxe swimwear pieces make for pretty bridal (shower) gifts!

Visit to place an order for this proudly-Pinay swimwear line. And launch the gallery to see photos from the bikini runway show held on the shores of Cebu, as well as a preview of their current collections!

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