The Games may be over, but for beach volleyball silver medalists April Ross and Jennifer Kessy, their involvement leaves a meaningful mark.
The Southern California natives give us the scoop on their uniforms:
What made your uniforms so unique?
APRIL: We thought we had the best uniforms in beach volleyball at the Olympics and are so happy that 4POINT4 made them, not only because the design is great, but more so because of the story behind them. We not only earned a medal for our country, but along the journey 4POINT4 donated sports equipment and apparel to children in Cite Soleil, Haiti and Phuket, Thailand. You can't ask for much more than that from a bikini!
What are your thoughts on the bikini uniform? Why is it such a popular choice for players?
JEN: We have been wearing bikinis in California since birth so we are very comfortable in them. I would love to point out that pole vault, marathon runners, and other track athletes have very small uniforms, not covering much more than us. The reason we get so much attention is because it's called a "bikini."
APRIL: The traditionally "sexy" bikini is not an option for us, nor for most other professional players. We are about setting a good example for young girls and players around the world. Our sport is NOT about showing off our bodies. Beach volleyball is a very demanding sport and we wear what is most conducive to movement in the sand. When it's cold we wear long sleeves. I loved the look of the long sleeve suits we wore during our night matches in London.
When you're not competing at the beach, what is your personal beachwear like? Do you have any favorite staple pieces?
JEN: Sundresses are a must! I have about 25 in my closet and love the freedom I feel when I wear them. They are easy to pack on the road and I still feel feminine without packing too much.
APRIL: When we aren't competing I hardly ever go to the beach! It's like hanging out at the office on weekends, but on the rare occasion that I do, I usually wear a long flowy dress and always a hat and sunscreen!
How do you keep your look fresh at the beach? What are your go-to beauty products?
JEN: I believe that the more bathing suits you own the better. I know people who have had the same bathing suit for years. Give yourself options and different styles because some days you want to be more covered than others, and some days you feel like showing it off!
APRIL: I love Shiseido products. I start with their liquid sunscreen and then use their powder sunscreen on top - it comes in shades to match your skin tone so it improves the look of my complexion while protecting it! And I always always have chapstick with me. The sun, sand and wind dry my lips out like no other!