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Grin & Bare It

September 12, 1997|JEANNINE STEIN

Tis the season to bear your tummies, as the thermometer teases us daily with triple digits. Whether it's keeping cool or simply celebrating our midsections, women are emancipating their midriffs in tiny tank tops, tied-up T-shirts and halters that expose a full equator of skin.

From Santa Monica to Melrose, Venice to Pasadena, from teenagers to women of a certain age, the bisected style works. Sexy, but not too provocative. Hot, yet cool.

For the full effect, abbreviated tops look best with skirts, shorts or pants that dip below the belly button. But barer, beware. To carry off this look, you need more than good fashion sense. You need a well-toned tummy. We're not talking abs of steel here--a slightly rounded stomach is nothing to be ashamed of. But ix-nay on the rolls of flab, OK gals?

Besides, a smooth middle makes for a better canvas to show off accessories like tattoos and pierced navels. Of course, you will be revealing one more thing to the world: whether you're an innie or an outie.

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