I have a friend who I go swimming with from time to time. Fortunately, we both have the ability to talk the hind leg off a donkey, which is good, because it keeps the focus away from the visual of me in Lycra. For someone like me, who has, how shall I say it, a complicated relationship with clingy clothes, I seem to spend an awful lot of time in Lycra. This may be in part because I hope to portray the ‘sporty-girl’ look – as if split jumps or 100m sprint records are imminent.
I havn’t quite caught on (clearly stuck in some kind of 80’s twilight zone) that ‘sporty-girl’ sportswear has progressed beyond Lycra, to cotton-lycra and weirdly stitched leggings called compression garments. Hopelessly left behind as I am, I still cannot compete with my swimming friend, Shorne*, who just this week was lamenting the fact that he needs to finally replace is nylon – yes NYLON – Speedo and that (who knew?) nylon Speedo’s aren’t available anymore.
After I’d finished rolling around laughing ,we both thought it only fair (to nylon manufactures) to compare these wonderfully synthetic fabrics. I feel at this point that I should first explain the design of Shorne’s Speedo. I fell in love once (in 1984) with a lifeguard that wore one that was exactly the same. White with navy stripes. A classic I’d say. I’m pretty sure if I pressed Shorne for details, he’d confess that his Speedo is also, in truth, from 1984.
I digress. Upon closer investigation, we decided that Lycra in fact, is just not to be trusted. In his words, at least nylon doesn’t get that “just took a dump in my cozzie” look when it is all worn out. One point to nylon. I added that (sexy as see-through lingerie is) I prefer my cozzie to stay thick and sturdy – especially around the bum and boob area. Why does Lycra go all thin in the places you need the most support? Two points to nylon.
What about the little bits of “rubber dandruff” that come of the cozzie, Shorne says, when the rubber starts separating from the other lycra fibres? Three points to nylon. And lets not forget, I suddenly remember, how after the winter season you take your cozzie out and the stretchy bits that are supposed to grip your buttocks, have gone all un- stretchy. Instead of nice grippy bum elastic, you are left with a frilly edge, which doesn’t grip your buttocks at all but instead fans out like Joan Collins’ peplum jackets in Dynasty. Four points to nylon.
I chose not to mention how nylon leotards nearly chaffed me nipple-less when I was I kid (nipples are so over-rated, really), but did point out that no one has ever asked for my second hand nylon leggings. And for this, I think nylon wins points five, six and seven.
Just FYI, go feel up some of those “shark-skin” type cozzies that the Olympic swimmers wear. Very un-elastic. Very shark-skin-like but much, much thinner. I also wouldn’t bend down to dive off the starting blocks wearing that – I’m just saying is all.
*Names have been protected for the sake of those that still wear nylon Speedo’s.