Whether colourful eye-catchers or classically dark models, swimwear for men impresses with an impressive variety. Short and tight styles are particularly suitable for sporty swimming. On the other hand, the best way to splash around is with long and wide board shorts.
Men’s swimwear is one of the most important items of clothing for men in the pool, on the beach or on the lawn. The trick is to find a model that best suits your personal taste and underlines your own character. With this guide, we want to help you make this decision.
The Best Men’s Swimwear: Our Picks
Buying criteria: What to look for when buying men’s swimwear
Swimwear for men is available in a wide variety of colours and shapes. In this jungle of variety, it is difficult to find the perfectly fitting model quickly and easily. To help you make your choice, we have researched the most important buying criteria for you. The most important features include:
- Colour and pattern
- Waistband height and leg length
- Approved for competitions
Below we will now discuss these features in more detail.
For your men’s swimwear to fit comfortably and securely, it must fit your waist size. Basically, two systems of measurement have become established. On the one hand, there are the common underwear sizes for men, which range from 3 to 14.
On the other hand, the US designations XS to 6XL are just as common. However, since these measurements are not subject to an internationally valid standard, swimming trunks from different manufacturers can vary quite a bit despite the same size indication.
US size M, for example, corresponds to DE size 5, but both declarations allow for a waist circumference in the range between 86 and 91 cm. Each supplier interprets this margin slightly differently. It is usually the case that models made in the USA run a little larger. Men’s swimwear from Italy or France, on the other hand, tends to be at the lower waistband limit.
Colour and pattern
There are almost no limits to the range of colours and patterns. In addition to the usual basic colours, there are also models in black or white. Colourful men’s swimwear is somewhat more extravagant.
If you attach great importance to individuality, then swimwear with printed pictures or graphics comes into question. Even more eye-catching are variants in garish neon shades such as orange, green or pink. The choice here is made not only by the current trend, but above all by your personal taste.
Men’s swimming trunks that change colour in the water are a special highlight. Depending on the water temperature, the colour change is different and is always an unexpected eye-catcher.
Waistband height and leg length
Manufacturers differentiate between low, normal and high waist. Men with long legs and rather narrow hips should choose the low version. A medium waistband height is the classic all-round genius, so to speak.
Such models are very comfortable to wear and are also suitable for a wide range of figure types. Men’s swimwear that sits above the hips belongs to the high waist category. Such swimwear conceals any problem zones such as the stomach and bottom. The leg length is usually determined by the swimwear category. Depending on whether they are swim briefs, swim pants or swim / board shorts, the length also varies.
Swimwear for men can also be subdivided in terms of features. These include, for example, a zip or drawstring, the number of trouser pockets or even a waterproof coin pocket. Mesh briefs integrated into the swim trunks ensure a particularly high level of comfort. The material used also determines how quickly your swimwear dries again after swimming.
Pure cotton is usually unsuitable because it quickly soaks up water. Therefore, a blended fabric with additional synthetic components is usually used. In terms of sustainability, you can also use a recycled synthetic fibre. If you want to get a tan on your legs as a result of sunbathing despite wearing swimming trunks, you can do this with so-called tan-through shorts.
A nylon component in the fabric allows more than half of the incident sunlight to pass through to the skin. However, a low sun protection factor in the single-digit range remains.
Approval for competitions
The umbrella organisation for all national water sports federations, FINA, certifies swimwear approved for competition purposes with a seal. This ensures equal opportunities for all participants in the sporting event. The underlying regulations and guidelines placed on men’s swimwear are extremely extensive.
A detailed explanation of the entire regulations would exceed the scope of our guide. For example, a permissible maximum material thickness of 0.8 mm is defined. The only important thing for you as a competitive swimmer is to pay attention to the corresponding logo when buying men’s swimwear. In case of doubt, you must specifically consult with the organiser.
Swimwear for men: The most important questions answered
To make it even easier for you to make a decision that suits you best, the next section is devoted to the most important questions about swimwear for men.
In which styles is men’s swimwear available?
- Swim shorts: This sub-variant is not tight-fitting, extremely casual and sporty. The upper edge often has an elastic waistband with drawstring. For more comfort, an inner mesh is usually sewn in.
- Boardshorts: Such models are very similar to swim shorts, but have a longer length, usually up to the knees. They are great for sports on the beach.
- Swim pants: These are very tight-fitting models with a short leg. They are ideal for swimming and offer a very good fit.
- Swimbriefs: Swim briefs embody the classic slip form and thus offer maximum freedom of movement. They are extremely tight-fitting and suitable for the self-confident man.
- Sports swim trunks: The last group combines a good fit with excellent mobility. They have a sporty design and are particularly breathable.
In the fashion sector, it is often not so easy to assign a product to a specific style. There are often overlaps. The easiest thing for you to do is to try on different styles. That way you will find the style that suits you best.
What are the latest swimwear trends for men?
If you prefer something more classic and simple, go for unobtrusive black. Printed graphics, on the other hand, are giving way more to modern striped patterns. Lengthwise they look elegant, horizontal stripes provide a familiar retro feeling. In any case, you have to bear in mind that trends are often only local to certain areas. What is popular in one place may be a no-go elsewhere.
How do I wash my swimwear?
The sewn-in label provides information about this. You should only select a gentler washing programme at moderate temperatures. In most cases, do not use fabric softener, as this could damage the material. In the worst case, this will have a negative effect on the fit and elasticity of the swim trunks.
How do I determine the right size for my men’s swimwear?
- Place the measuring tape loosely around the part of the body to be measured. The waistband height is measured just above the navel.
- Keep a relaxed posture and make sure not to pull in your stomach. Now you can read the value displayed on the measuring tape.
- With the help of a size chart, you can easily convert your waist size into the respective US or DE size.
The work is much easier and usually more accurate if a second person assists you with the measurement.
Styling tips for men’s swimwear: What complements your new swim trunks?
At the end of our guide, we would like to give you a few general styling tips for your new swimwear.
- Feel-good look for the spa: classic black briefs combined with a cosy bathrobe in a muted colour, plus comfy bath slippers, a large terry towel with colourful stripes, a good book and a bottle of fresh water, safely stowed in a jute bag
- Sporty look: swim shorts with vertical stripes in blue and white, combined with a white T-shirt and toe sandals, plus swimmer’s goggles and an extra quick-drying and colour-coordinated towel made of thin material
- Look for the beach: Longer, neon-coloured board shorts combined with a casual, low-cut underarm shirt made of thin fabric in a neutral colour, plus a thin cotton shirt worn open for sun protection, rounded off with large sunglasses and an optional straw hat
One of the most important things is that you feel good in your swimwear. Your accompanying positive charisma will even outshine one or two trend conflicts.
Swimming, bathing and splashing around is healthy and invigorates body and mind. In order to fully enjoy this leisure activity, it is very important that you also feel comfortable and attractive in your men’s swimwear.
This way you can perfectly enjoy the day with friends and family. Whether it’s a classic look or a modern trend, the current range of swimwear for men leaves nothing to be desired. Take the opportunity and head to the beach, the swimming pool or the lake and present your new acquisition there.