Friday, October 7

35 Best Men’s Swim Trunks in 2022: The Most Stylish Shorts for the Beach, the Pool, and Everywhere In Between

Look, we get it: The best men’s swim trunks might not be exactly top of mind at the moment. You’ve had the whole dang summer to frolic in the sun, and you’re good and ready for it all to be over. Temperatures are barely on the downswing, you’re positively bursting with excitement to bust out that new sweater, and the harrowing humidity of the last heat wave is an all-too-recent memory. Staying inside—comfortably ensconced in the climate-controlled environment of your apartment while you plan your fall fits—is priority numero uno. But even if you’re not doing all that much swimming right now, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t treat yourself to a new swimsuit, necessarily. Fact is, these days, the very best men’s swim trunks are designed to double as the very best shorts, period. (And no matter how frigid you keep your pad, shorts weather is sticking around.) 

From the fit to the fabric to the details, the right pair of swim trunks should pair seamlessly with the rest of your wardrobe, and won’t look a hair out of place whether you’re hanging out at home, heading out for a jog, or hitting the bodega down the street. And if the opportunity comes to brave the AC-less outdoors and take a dip in your buddy’s sun-drenched pool, or spend the weekend at a beach house once or twice more this season? You’ll already be perfectly dressed and ready to go. So with all that in mind, here are 35 of the absolute finest multi-purpose, next-generation, and yes, all-around best men’s swim trunks to buy right now.

The Best Swim Trunks, Period

Bather indigo “Ne-Maki” shibori swim trunks

Here’s everything we want from our trunks in 2022: a comfortable, above-the-knee fit that shows off just the right amount of thigh; plenty of pockets, because duh; and a sturdy fabric that performs well in the water, dries quickly out of it, and won’t raise any eyebrows if you’re wearing it more than a few miles from the beach. (A silky-soft mesh lining doesn’t hurt, either.) The signature model from Bather, a tiny independent label out of Toronto, hits all of those marks and then some. They’re the ideal inseam and silhouette for just about every body type, and will hold up like a champ through beach days, workouts, weekend hangs, and heavy wash cycles. Oh, yeah, and they also come in dozens of solid colors and wild patterns—from plain-jane navy and white to trippy florals—so it’s damn near impossible not to find one that works for you. In our humble opinion, the best of the bunch is this abstract tie-dye number, which will take your warm weather fits from good to Damn, this guy knows what he’s doing.

The Best Elevated Swim Trunks

Orlebar Brown “Bulldog” mid-length jacquard swim shorts

It’s tough to establish a new gold standard in menswear, to rejig something familiar so perfectly it becomes the baseline by which all future versions are judged. A.P.C. did it with their aptly-named New Standard jeans, bringing stiff selvedge denim to a whole new generation. Common Projects managed it, too, with the Achilles Low—their luxed-up, Italian-made take on a classic white tennis shoe. And just over a decade ago, Orlebar Brown pulled that same trick off for swimwear with the Bulldog. They’re as precisely tailored as suit trousers—with fetching buckled side tabs to keep ‘em extra snug in the waves—with the same convenient pockets and zip fly as any regular bottoms, all cut from lightweight, quick-dry nylon that won’t fade dramatically over time. Add that up, and you get a pair of trunks so definitive and intuitive it’s hard to believe no one had ever thought to make them that way prior.

The Best Affordable Swim Trunks

Patagonia Baggies 5″ shorts

If any one pair was responsible for launching the swimwear-as-shorts movement, it’d be Patagonia Baggies. For close to 40 years now, they’ve been the signature warm weather bottoms of hardcore mountaineers, deep sea fishers, camper van lifers, dedicated Deadheads, and backyard-grilling dads the world over. More recently—as the fashion world has gravitated toward practical, outdoorsy gear—they’ve also been adopted as the summer uniform for a certain strain of stylish young fella. It’s easy to see the appeal across all those demographics: they’re tough but lightweight, laidback but presentable, affordable as hell, trend-proof in fit and form and function. And, because they’re made by Patagonia, you can rest assured knowing you’re supporting a company that’s almost always on the right side of history.

The Best Yacht-Lolling Swim Trunks

Frescobal Carioca “Ipanema” geometric-print swim shorts

Brazil’s Frescobol Carioca specializes in a sub-genre we like to call “extremely-rich-guy resortwear.” There’s just something about their signature prints that feels tailor-made for a flawlessly overtanned Most Interesting Man-type stepping off a private chopper onto the helipad of his 200-foot megayacht in St. Tropez. You’ll probably never have that guy’s lifestyle, but you can at least have his bathing suit. These ones, in particular, will look as killer by the pool with a polo as they will dressed up for dinner with a sport coat and loafers.

The Best Old-School Swim Trunks

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Birdwell Beach Britches nylon board shorts

Way back in 1961, Carrie Birdwell Mann started sewing heavyweight nylon shorts for surfing—”beach britches,” as she called them, the very first of their kind—from her living room in Southern California. Six decades later, her original two-ply, triple-stitched design is still as handsome, practical, and impossible to wear out as ever. If you’re after some serious throwback, hang-ten, shaka-hand energy, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better pair of drawstring waist boardies than these.

30 More Swim Trunks We Love

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Commas striped swim shorts

Like your favorite button-up, your comfiest pajamas, blue stripes will always look good no matter where you put them.

Speedo “Redondo” printed swim trunk

A tad more coverage than your average Speedo.

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Saturdays NYC “Timothy” Solar Flower swim short

The kind of swim trunks that’ll make you want to go swimming at night.

CDLP recycled-nylon swim shorts

The scintillatingly short shorts you’ve been after.

Polar Skate Co. Spiral swim short

These are just good everyday shorts period. But should you find yourself near a body of water, you’ll be glad you’re wearing these and not your jeans.

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Paul Smith “Rave Waves” swim shorts

From beach to rave.

Bonobos throwback swim trunks

Add a little retro swagger to your summer reportoire.

Good Morning Tapes World Peace swim short

Bring the museum with you to the beach.

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Adidas classic 3-stripes swim shorts

Team Three Stripes, stand up…and then hold the position, so we can admire the way these nostalgia-drenched shorts flatter your thighs.

Thom Browne seersucker swim short

Pairs well with sweet tea.

True Tribe “Wild Steve” straight-leg mid-length iridsecent ECONYL swim shorts

True Tribe’s silky swim shorts took home top honors in this year’s Fitness Awards. Turns out, they look even better in a trippy tie dye..

Stone Island econyl nylon swim trunks

Thanks to a subtle iridescent finish, Stone Island’s swimwear will help you retain that telltale summer glow all season long.

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Atalaye “Baleak” mid-length printed recycled swim shorts

It’s like your philosophy professor always said: some things are best considered in the abstract.

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Solid & Striped classic printed swim shorts

Solid & Striped’s trippy trunks are, funnily enough, neither solid nor striped—and all the more deserving of a spot in your shorts drawer because of it.

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Everlane renew swim shorts

Sleek, streamlined, and easily paired with everything else in your warm-weather rotation.

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Polo Ralph Lauren traveler classic swim trunks

The reigning king of unabashedly sunny Americana at his summery best.

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Lululemon pool shorts

Your favorite workout shorts, now in swim trunk form.

Double Rainbouu flame night swim shorts

Bro, are your thighs insured? Because they’re on fire.

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Mami Wata “Tofu” swim shorts

Mami Wata’s patterned swimsuits takes their design cues from African surf culture, with the Made in Africa tag to prove it.

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Nautica classic logo tri-block series swim trunks

‘Merica, baby.

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Nike volley short swim trunk

Solid Nike shorts: never not a great look.

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Outerknown “Apex” trunks by Kelly Slater

If you’re a serious surfer, Kelly Slater’s signature trunks are like the Air Jordans of performance board shorts.

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Lacoste colorblock taffeta board short

Sunny, preppy, throwback goodness.

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Vuori “Banks” 5″ shorts

Quick-drying, recycled polyester shorts in the perfect 5-inch inseam.

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Fourlaps “Bolt” 7″ shorts

Good for running errands, running in and out of the pool, and running, period.

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Columbia PFG backcast III water short

Multipurpose shorts made for all kinds of warm weather activities.

Vilebrequin Moorea swim trunks

This is like when Starburst introduced its tropical line of candies: familiar but in a bold new colorway.

Atalaye “Ardea” short-length printed recycled swim shorts

Who knew that an 1800s wallpaper would look fuego on your thighs?



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