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Summer clothes guide for ostomates

Deciding on summer clothes to wear in hot weather when you have a stoma can be a daunting prospect, but don’t let it ruin your summer.

There are so many different fashions out there, so choose what feels right for you. If you fancy a bit of clothes shopping, embrace the opportunity to spruce up your old wardrobe. You can also treat yourself to some inexpensive new bits and bobs for sunny season.

You may feel more self-conscious to begin with, so here are some top tips to help guide you in what to try this season…

Summer clothes tips for women

  • Waist bands are the part of clothing that most people dread when they have a new stoma or even an existing one. However, waist bands don’t have to be tight. Let them work in your favour with high waisted skirts and shorts. Many of these are elasticated or a simple button, sitting above your stoma pouch to gently camouflage your appliance.
  • Dresses, summer dresses and long skirts are ideal for the summer, especially long and floaty styles which offer freedom of movement and comfort.
  • Leggings and jeggings are still available this season and they offer a variety of colours and a very soft waistline, providing more comfort than traditional denim.
  • Denim can still be worn and enjoyed. Stretch denim is perfect for looking stylish whilst allowing a lot of movement.
  • Long shirts/jumpers over leggings are great for cooler days, or on days you want to stay home, relax and feel casual.
  • Vest tops, camisoles offer a splash of colour to your outfit and can be worn tight or loose.

Summer clothes tips for men

  • Patterned or colourful tops often detracts from your lower body, whilst concealing your stoma bag.
  • Darker shorts or trousers may help you to feel safer from leakage and help build up your confidence.
  • A light yet fitted vest under your shirt which can help disguise any bumps underneath.
  • Jogger trousers or shorts can feel comfortable and give you the opportunity to lift the waistband where it feels comfortable.
  • For a smarter look, trousers with a pleat provide added room for movement and give room for expansion when your bag fills.
  • Belts with large buckles can provide a flattering detraction from other areas of the waist.
  • High-waisted boxer-type shorts or trunks can disguise the stoma bag, offering discreet styling.

Tip: Don’t forget stoma bags are now available in different colours (beige, white or black) which can work well under plain work shirts.

Wearing dark colours

Wearing dark colours are slimming for us all. Often, ostomates find wearing dark coloured clothing helps to make them feel safer whilst they are gaining confidence in their stoma care, in case of any leaks. But if you prefer lighter colours, then go for it. Wear whichever colour compliments your style and makes you feel comfortable. Confidence is key.

Patterned colours

Feel conscious that your stoma bag is visible beneath your clothing? Try wearing patterned colours, which can distract the eye and act like camouflage, discreetly hiding your stoma appliance.

Swimwear with a stoma

Don’t be put off swimming now that you have a stoma. Try patterned swimwear or tankinis and sarongs which are popular on holidays. For men, swimming boxers with a sun shirt help to keep your condition discreet.

If you don’t like your current swimming costume or bathers, then try Vanilla Blush or The White Rose Collection, as they have a range of costumes designed especially for ostomates.

Underwear for ostomates

Underwear is so important in making us feel nice. It’s the first thing we put on and last thing we remove – so it is important to us that it feels comfortable and supports your ostomy appliance. Underwear also offers concealment from your ostomy. There is a lovely range of stoma underwear which can be ordered online via Vanilla Blush or The White Rose Collection.

For more helpful advice and tips on life with an ostomy, visit our stoma care advice centre or visit our Oakmed advice blog.

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