Surfer wearing a Mia Ola Bikini

How did a line of functional, stylish and sexy become a reality? It all started with a designer/surfer/entrepreneur dreaming of having sand under her toes, while commuting into her fashion job in NYC in stilettos. Only a few years ago, Helena Fogarty was working for Chanel in New York City and dreaming of the beach!  She’s a surfer and every chance she could, she took off for someplace with warm water and waves.

So how does a taste for winter getaways translate into a new business named Mi Ola?  Every time Helena was in the water, she struggled with keeping her bikinis in place. And she’s not alone. Every woman has dealt with this issue.   And there’s no reason that a woman can’t look great in a bikini and be active… but until now, no one was making bikinis that stayed put and looked great.

Helena Fogarty of Mi OlaFrom Daydream to reality

So, Helena Fogarty decided that she needed to create a bikini line that was sexy, cute, fashionable, and yet stayed in place when one was tossed off a surfboard or falls off a stand up paddle board.

“Just over 8 years ago, I learned to surf and it changed my life,” Fogarty said. “I was living in NYC, working in high fashion, and became completely obsessed with surfing. I was walking the city streets, dreaming of having the sand under my feet! After a couple years of this, I traded in my high heels for flip flops and moved to Costa Rica to surf.”

Fogarty started a bikini line that truly addressed the needs of the growing number of young ladies and women taking part in beach related sports and activities. It is clear that the large majority of designers and labels are only in the bikini market for style. Fogarty wanted style and real life functionality.

Has anyone else in the bikini business tested whether a bikini would stay put when you wipe out while surfing a killer wave in Costa Rica prior to Mi Ola? You can probably call that moment Fogarty’s “aha” moment.

“Once I was in the water every day, I needed well-made, chic, sexy surf bikinis that stayed on and I couldn’t find any,” Fogarty said. “So I created Mi Ola - Sexy Bikinis that Stay On! Every suit has been designed to look great and provide active women with a functional, premium, sexy suit that stays put. Each style has also been wave tested and approved by real surfers.”

Built to be sexy... and last with functionality

Real surfers, real Mi Ola BikinisMi Ola uses fabrics with UPF 50+ to protect wearers from the sun. The fabric is also tested to make sure it doesn’t fade or stretch out after hard use. All the hardware is brass with no coating or paint that might chip off after being worn it a few times. The rings are even molded to fit body curves and used only in places that would reduce the risk of a bruise while surfing. Lastly, every suit is fully lined with substantial fabric, to make sure you’re really covered.

Mi Ola is growing. Fogarty and her line now offer a growing selection of swimwear for active women. The pieces are made in the USA and are tested by Mi Ola team riders - surfers and outdoor lovers who offer constant feedback. More goes into the swimwear than most people would realize down to every seam which is tested to reduce chafing or discomfort.

“When you try on any Mi Ola style, you’ll immediately notice the difference,” Fogarty says. “The fit is impeccable and the suit grips your curves. Every style has slight modifications from a “normal” bikini, which will keep it on your body, and make you look smoking hot. Every component has been engineered to enhance, last and keep you covered.”

Working hard to provide the best bikini possible

Fogarty has accomplished her goal of starting her Mi Ola bikini line but she says that she is not going to rest on her accomplishments. That is one huge factor that sets the Mi Ola brand and Fogarty in a separate group from other designers. Fogarty truly wants feedback from her customers in real life situations. To her there is more to the bikini business than meets the eye.

“What you’ll find with Mi Ola is every seam, stitch, elastic and fabric has been tried, tested and approved. We want to make the best bikinis out there, and make you look really good. The Mi Ola’s motto is, ‘Be comfortable in your own skin. Be secure in your bikini.’ That means that we want to hear feedback from customers, and how we can improve!”

Feel free to contact Mi Ola using their social media outlets. The brand is truly interested in hearing from customers and beach lovers. Check out the contact info below and look for Fogarty at the beach. She may look like her and her bikini clad surfers are just catching a few waves but there’s a good chance they are actually in the middle of a Mi Ola bikini test session. What better place to do it than on the beach than in an office in the city.

Company Information and socail media contacts below gallery.

Company Info & Contact

  • Twitter: @MiOlaSurf
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  • EmailThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Inspired by the Tropics. Made in the USA
21 Atlantic Walk,
Breezy Point,
NY 11697
+1 (917) 488-5292

[Images: Courtesy of / Property of Mi Ola]

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