The 24 best men’s swim trunks and bathing suits of 2023 | CNN Underscored (2024)

Summer is nearly here, and all roads are leading us to the water. Whether you’re a regular amphibian or you just prefer to wet your feet, quality swimwear is a seasonal essential (best paired with your year-round essential face sunscreen). From surfer-style board shorts to Olympic Speedos, men’s swimwear comes in a wide array of designs and cuts to suit different tastes and body types.

Here are 24 top-rated mens’ swim trunks, including some of our experts’ favorites.

“I think a 5-inch inseam works for most guys, but the 5.5-inch inseam on these trunks might be ideal for those who want to dip their toe into the shorter shorts trend,” says Nordstrom men’s fashion and editorial director Jian DeLeon.

Just looking for a basic suit in a classic cut? These lightweight shorts from Open Edit are all you need.

“The North Face takes some inspiration from trail shorts for these belted swim trunks,” DeLeon says, noting that zip pockets make this pair useful on or off the beach.

The gold standard in tried-and-true activewear, Nike also makes top-rated swim trunks. You can also grab these shorts in a 5-inch version if that length suits you better.

Adidas also brings its trusted quality and construction into the water with these trunks in its classic three-stripe design.

With its crocodile logo, Lacoste is no stranger to the water. Available in 13 hues, these shorts will make you feel right at home in the water.

“Leopard print has become pretty common in menswear by now,” DeLeon says. We know that cheetah print and leopard aren't exactly the same thing, but these cheetah shorts from Duvin Design are the perfect statement trunk to pair with your favorite white tee.

A classic fit with more coverage, this pair from Old Navy comes with a 7-inch inseam in a variety of prints and colors.

For even more coverage, check out these 10-inch board shorts in this sleek striped print. Sizes range from 28 to 50.

These shorts from PacSun are made with 100% recycled polyester, and their fun pastel print will let everyone know you’re down for a good time.

These simple, sub-$20 Goodfellow & Co. trunks are top-rated at Target and have UPF 50+ sun protection to help keep more sensitive areas from getting burned.

This knee-grazing pair is ideal for transitioning from a walk around town (or even a casual office) to lounging by the pool.

Jeremy Kirkland, host of the fashion-focused “Blamo!” podcast, notes that Patagonia makes some of the best swimwear on the market. “I only wear the 5-inch inseam,” he says. “I promise you, the weirder the pattern, the better!”

“The classic Birdwell Beach Britches are a California staple,” Kirkland says, noting the brand is made in the US.

Chubbies has become one of the most recognizable casual menswear brands, thanks to social media. These trunks evoke a hazy sunset on the water and are available up to a size XXXL.

For a similar feel with double the inseam, Old Navy’s board shorts come at a more modest price point.

“Bonobos offers several lengths on their swim trunks, which makes them perfect for guys of all sizes,” says New York-based men’s stylist Sam Spector. Choose between 5-, 7- and 9-inch inseams.

Available in tons of colors and prints as well as two different length options, these retro trunks from Bonobos will have you living out your best ’70s surf fantasies.

“I love the color of this Volley trunk, which offers a zippered back pocket” to keep valuables safe, Spector says.

Available in 5-inch and 7-inch lengths, these streamlined shorts have a zippered pocket for storing valuables and look just as great in or out of the water.

Though the brand name is synonymous with its popular brief style, Speedo also makes top-rated trunks in a variety of bold colors, including this pair with a 4-inch inseam.

Speedo’s signature cut comes in a variety of prints and offers optimal performance support for the serious swimmer.

Reviewers love this attention-grabbing brief from Todd Sanfield with one reviewer writing that the suit "shows some skin but won’t rock the boat if you’re by the pool with family" and stays tight without squeezing unflattering areas.

The 24 best men’s swim trunks and bathing suits of 2023 | CNN Underscored (2024)


What are the men's swim trunks trend in 2023? ›

This year, men's swim trunks come in all different styles of stripes—nautical, pin, barcode, you name it. Instead of the usual same-sized stripes, we're really digging the look with blocks of solid colors interrupted by varying lines and shapes. Ditch the solid-color swim shorts this year. Patterns are in.

What is the men's beach wear 2023? ›

A trend that is taking root in men's swimwear is the botanical print. Detailed and dramatic plant studies create prints that emanate the time of the great discoveries in botany. These leafy drawings are worked into all over designs for our swim shorts.

What swimsuits look best on men? ›

In general, nearly every man looks great in mid-thigh-length classic trunks, from 7 to 8 inches at the inseam (the length from crotch to hem at inner thigh). Tall men can look more balanced in a longer suit that ends an inch or two above the knees.

Are speedos back in style 2023? ›

Yes, I think speedo swim briefs are definitely becoming more popular. When I go to the beach I like to wear a Speedo style swimsuit and I also keep an eye out for other guys who wear them too.

What is the swimwear trend for summer 2023? ›

Style Notes: One of the most dominant swimwear trends for 2023 is brown, earthy hues, which mirror one of the biggest clothing trends on the spring/summer runways. Minimalists, this one's for you. Tick off two looks in one with a simple brown swimsuit.

What is popular to wear in 2023? ›

In response to the ultra unpractical mini skirts of 2022, maxi skirts have dominated 2023. In line with the aforementioned cargo and denim trends, expect lots of low-rise, pocket-adorned silhouettes and floor-grazing jean skirts, as well as styles in various prints and unexpected materials like velvet.

What is the summer 2023 trend for men? ›

The Spring/Summer 2023 menswear collections are no exception. Vibrant patterns, sheer garments, V-necks, and loose-fitting trousers return this season with an added attention to layered denim, delicate crochet, and a prominent savanna-like color scheme (beige, orange, and brown).

What length swim trunks should men wear? ›

Swim trunks should end above the wearer's knee regardless of his stature, but big guys can wear longer shorts, and small guys can wear shorter shorts. Sticking to this guideline will ensure that big men's height and weight are minimally accentuated, while small men won't appear as small as they are.

What color swim trunks are best? ›

The first step to finding a swim trunk color that looks good on you is to look at your own skin tone. Paler skin can be paired with muted, less vibrant colors, while men with darker skin tones should not be afraid to go bold with brighter colors.

What color swimsuit looks best on men? ›

Swimsuit Up for Your Body Type

A few rules of thumb: Wear dark colors to minimize a gut. Black, navy and dark grey are slimming colors that draw attention away from your belly. Horizontal stripes are a bonus—popular to contrary belief, they make you look longer and leaner.

What color swimsuit makes you look skinniest? ›

Black is the most flattering swimsuit color because it can slim and accentuate most bodies. Depending on the style and pattern, dark and bold hues can flatter the body. Pastel and earth tones are also generic yet flattering color choices for swimwear.

What do guys wear under their swim trunks? ›

Men usually wear underwear under their swim trunks to keep from getting chafed and to give them more support and coverage. Other reasons are to protect modesty, avoid embarrassing clothing mishaps, and keep chlorine or salt water from getting to sensitive areas.

Are mens swim briefs making a comeback? ›

After decades of banishment from mainstream wardrobes, one of fashion's most divisive garments — the men's swimming brief — is making a tentative return across the globe. Some would argue the garment has never gone away.

Are speedos coming back in fashion? ›

Beachgoers beware, this controversial piece of swimwear is back in style! After decades of banishment from mainstream wardrobes, one of fashion's most divisive garments — the men's swimming brief — is making a tentative return across the globe. Some would argue the garment has never gone away.

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