Beach weather means beachwear and swim trunks are a must in any wardrobe during the coming months, even if the beach is far away. There’s something magically versatile about a solid pair of swim-ready shorts that just fits perfectly into a myriad of warm-weather situations, from lying in the park to running around town. To help you upgrade your own bathing suit this summer or to add a great option alongside it, I put together some great swim trunks I’ve tried and a few others that are top-rated.
The One Short, $64 at Fair Harbor: I’ve been wearing these regularly since Fair Harbor sent me a pair to try out. They really do hit all the marks they’re designed to, perfectly fit to handle an ocean, a weekend outing, or a nap on the couch — and their top ratings speak for themselves. They stretch four ways and are comprised of 50% organic cotton, 40% recycled plastic bottles (yes, really), and a tenth spandex. Your back pocket includes a hidden zippered compartment and the pair is designed to quickly dry. I really like my pair in Navy but you can also get it in half a dozen other colors, like Red or Green.
Kanu Surf Men's Barracuda Swim Trunks, $18 on Amazon: This more affordable bathing suit is Amazon’s No.1 best-selling swim trunk. More than 6,500 reviewers left them a 4.4-star average rating and you can get them in more than 40 styles and a likewise wide variety of sizes. This is likely the most solid basic bathing suit out there, especially for its price.
Boardshort, $78 at Hill City: The Hill City approach to swim trunks is exactly what you’d expect from the function-first and high design brand, leaving us with another great pair of shorts that can handle everything from waves to city-side brunches and long days outdoors. A combination of nylon and spandex, the Boardshort is constructed with a stretch double-weave fabric, reducing its cling to your legs and drying quickly. A rear zip pocket is nice to have for your valuables and the adjustable waist closure can keep things as you specifically like them.
Speedo Men's Marina Core Basic Watershorts, $30 on Amazon: Not all Speedo bathing suits are Speedo-style bathing suits (if you know what I mean). And these performance-driven swim trunks are an affordable path to getting the most out of your wet shorts. With built-in UV protection and quick-dry fabric, the cargo pockets on these shorts are constructed with drain holes so they don’t stay full of water. More than 1,600 reviewers gave these Speedos a 4.5-star average rating.
Filled Optic Swim Shorts, $65 at Happy Socks: Another high-design option for you is the recently launched swimwear collection from Happy Socks. These swim trunks are made with a cool and soft mesh lining and a classic elastic waist. I normally wear my pair around the house and of course during wet excursions. And while I’m a fan of the geometric patterns in my style, there are nearly a dozen other options.
Switchman Boardshort, $79 at prAna: While an investment, these swim trunks come with every whistle you can imagine and will last for many summers and beaches to come. Their 4-way stretch fabric is made with a recycled polyester blend and a durable water repellant finish, as well as quick drying and moisture wicking features. They also include UPF 50+ protection and a zippered pocket.
Bonobos Banzai E-Waist Trunks, $68 at Bonobos: As Bonobos does, its take on swim trunks combine high function and great style. In this case, you can get any one of the 28 styles and choose your inseam length, whether nine, seven, or fives inches. And you’re not losing any great features, either: A combination of polyester and spandex, the Banzais stretch four ways, includes a mesh interior lining, and a front key catch.
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