If you’re reading this then we’re guessing you’re a fan of RAQ. But do you know the woman behind the bikinis? From DJing to her desert island must-haves, come and have a beachside chat with the gal who started it all, RAQ’s founder, Sophia Argyropoulos.
Let’s go back to the start. What was your experience of growing up with big boobs?
I’ve had big boobs for as long as I can remember. I recently went into some old family photo albums and there were photos of me wearing swimsuits when I was about 10 years old and I definitely had boobs then so yeah, they’ve always been a big (excuse the pun) part of my life.
The beach and trips to visit the family in Greece were a big part of my life growing up, but I was always really self-conscious of my boobs. I remember not wanting to be the centre of attention because of them. I also struggled to find bikinis that fit me. I would pop into my local swimwear store every second week (even in winter) just to check if there was anything new that would fit. It was always a struggle and I’ve only realised recently that this experience is not unique. I hear stories like this from the RAQ Pack literally every day!
When was the moment where you knew you wanted to start RAQ?
It had slowly been brewing in the back of my mind for years! I would always say things like ‘I wish I could design something that would work for me’ but I had no idea where to start and didn’t really have any serious intentions.
Then one year, we were in Greece and I just had one bikini that would fit me—a hand-me down from my mum! I was just so fed up that everyone else got cute bikinis to choose from and I only had one. So I got out my notebook and started drawing.
What’s been your biggest achievement with RAQ (so far!)?
The way that RAQ has inspired so many people to feel confident in their bodies and feel like they can express themselves and live their life the way that they want to.
Also the community that we've created on social media—our RAQ Pack—and the excitement they bring every time we release something new or we ask for feedback or input. It just shows that we’ve touched a nerve and it's brought people together that have had this experience that they thought was just their own.
What’s your lockdown been like? What have you been doing to keep busy?
During lockdown I’ve thrown myself into the creative side of RAQ. I've realised over the last few years that collaborating with people to create the swimwear designs and the concept behind each drop and getting the models in the swimwear, that’s what makes me feel really fulfilled and inspired.
I've been trying to do that sort of thing within the restrictions. That's been a challenge, but it's kept me going. And I've also been bringing other people into the team to expand our product range. So I'm just trying to keep the momentum going in whatever way I can!
Besides being a fashion boss, what are your hobbies?
In the first lockdown in 2020 I learnt how to DJ! I borrowed some equipment from friends and set them it up in my bedroom. I very slowly learnt how to mix. I was actually really nervous to learn a new skill but music is something that brings me so much joy, so I was determined to pursue it.
A year later and I’ve played a few parties and bars (when we’re not in lockdown 💔 ) and have made mixes for RAQ and radio stations! It’s been nice to express myself outside of swimwear.
What are your goals for RAQ?
I want to continue creating and fostering the amazing RAQ community. To spotlight diverse voices on our website and Instagram and also to grow the range and expand outside of swimwear to other products that we think our RAQ pack will love. I also want to find more amazing people around me to continue striving towards these goals. It’s all happening!
Quick Fire Round -
What are your big 3?
Sun in Scorpio 🦂
Moon in Taurus ♉️
Virgo Rising ⬆️
Fave RAQ piece and why?
You’re on a desert island; what are you bringing with you?
1. A solar-powered CD player with all of my favourite music
3. Dermal Therapy lip balm (extra moisturising, of course)
Want more of Sophia? Follow her @sophiaargy