2019’s Best Swim Trends


Two true statements: Swim season is here, and it is short.

Your mission is to size up your swimwear, part ways with anything that doesn’t make you look and feel fabulous, and restock on bikinis, tankinis and one-pieces designed to do just that before all the cute ones in your size sell out.

And while you could certainly snap up a fab new black tank suit (side note: do!) and call it a day, that wouldn’t the most fun you could have under the sun, now would it? On such a tiny piece of real estate, swimwear is a pleasantly low-risk place to test the water on mood-boosting trends.

With the help of Bare Necessities swimwear buyer Megan Puma, we’ve put together the newest, most flattering looks that are big on quality, support, value and style. Now choose your favorites and get in your element, bathing beauty…!

One of the latest ways to refresh your suit selection is with decadent, feel-good fabrics—they add an unexpectedly interesting touch to something as predictable as swimwear. Crochet and lace are standard-bearers in this category, which has evolved to include ribbing and other raised patterns this season. With innovations in technology like 3D printing, says Megan, we’re beginning to see more of these real-life spin-offs.

Make your midsection look its most middling in one-piece suits that have a built-in belt. As in ready-to-wear, a belt—be it a little bow, side-tie, metal fastener or corset-inspired lacing—creates a flattering demarcation between the chest and hips, visually breaking up the torso to great effect with (this is key) next to no effort. This dressmaker detail also fancies up any suit for some poolside throwback glam.

Depending on where they’re placed, these appealing details can either emphasize or disguise, and they help put a pear shape more in proportion. If you’re a ruffle fan, deploy this updated design detail to maximum effect by adding delicate interest along straps or the bustline, across shoulders to highlight them, or to attractively conceal some chest or stomach.

One-of-a-Kind One-Pieces
Maillots have been having a moment for a number of swim seasons now so, to shake things up, swim designers have gone all in on special and unconventional of late. To wit: a little black swimdress, a one-piece with floaty wings, a leotard-inspired shaping style with mesh insets and short sleeves, a woven-look one-shoulder and a flirty one-piece masquerading as a bustier-and-skirt combo.

Every so often, minimalist, bright surfer chic comes back around. This is that season. But there aren’t your average Speedos, and you don’t have to be particular athletic to pull them off. Cropped bra tops conceal underwires and foam cups; convertible straps let you configure the suits to your shape. One’s even reversible! These scuba fabrics are softer than ever, says Megan, and updated with laser cutouts and color-blocking. “They’re not your classic zip-up surf suit, they’re more fashion,” she says.

Polka Dots
It’s not a paradox to say some trends are also timeless; count all the spots we’re seeing among them. White polka dots really pop against solid primary backgrounds, as these three different yet equally stunning suits (two of which are exclusive to Bare Necessities) prove. The new wave of modern, sporty sports still have the power to recast any figure as a pin-up girl any hourglass would envy.


Much like their cousin the polka dot, bold, high-contrast stripes are such a universal hit that it’s hard to call them trendy, yet they’re in abundance everywhere this season. The seaming and the angular stripes on these three bra-sized swimsuits are positioned to make the utmost out of curves. Some take traditional nautical stripes and combine them with another trend for the hottest hybrids. “All these stripes look different in some way than what you might already have,” Megan says.

Tropical Prints
Even if you’re not planning on venturing a whole lot farther than the town pool, you can easily conjure up an exotic vacation vibe with bikinis and tankinis that come in caliente colors and botanical prints. What’s new: These floral swimsuits run the gamut, from surprisingly muted or dark palettes to big, bright and bold blooms, from abstract, painterly florals to photo-realistic prints. Allover prints have the added benefit of camouflaging any trouble zones. They may even inspire a trip to the Caribbean.

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Brooke is the editor of this here blog. In a previous life, she was an editor at Good Housekeeping and O, The Oprah Magazine. Brooke has written for Glamour, Travel+Leisure, New York Magazine and more. She’s into concerts, travel and her exceptionally adorable daughter and husband.

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