The Best Men’s Bathing Suits

The Lululemon Pool Short is versatile and built to last.

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Best Men's Bathing Suit Tout

Lululemon / Bather / Amazon / Nordstrom

Whether you’re hitting the beach or lounging by the pool, you’ll need a bathing suit that’s both comfortable and good-looking. And these days, rocking a pair of below-the-knee boardshorts just won’t cut it. Today’s bathing suits are shorter—in the 5- to 7-inch inseam range—and aren’t shy about bold and fun patterns. Today’s best bathing suits are also often made of eco-friendly, quick-drying material, so you can go from the pool or beach to summiting a mountain or out for dinner without having to change. 

For a versatile bathing suit that’s built to last, our favorite is Lululemon’s Pool Short. It’s extremely comfortable, made mostly from recycled materials, and it comes in 5- or 7-inch sizes. But there are plenty of bathing suits out there for a reason, so from tiny briefs to performance shorts built for working out and then jumping into a pool, this list has something for everyone. 

Here’s our breakdown of the best bathing suits for men.

Best Overall: Lululemon Pool Short

Lululemon Pool Short

Lululemon

Why We Love it: Stylish and uber-comfortable, it feels like you’re wearing nothing at all, nothing at all, nothing at all . . . .

What to Consider: The shape parachutes out from the leg rather than being fitted.

According to the commentators of TikTok, every man looks good in 5-inch-inseam shorts, and they’d certainly have nothing to complain about with this Lululemon bathing suit. Meant to be an easy flow from yoga to the pool, Lululemon’s bathing suit not only shows off your thighs, it’s also super-comfy and functional. It's made with breathable mesh liners coated with a material that prevents it from breaking down in chlorine, and it has a back zipper with an easy-to-pull drawcord if you need to grab something while in the water. Oh, and it's stylish too, with eight bright and funky colors. 

Thigh shy? Lululemon also sells a 7-inch version

Inseam sizes: 5 or 7 inches | Material: Recycled polyester, elastane | Liner: Polyester, Xtra Life Lycra elastane

Best Overall, Runner-up: Bather Technical Surf Shorts

Bather Technical Surf Shorts

Bather

Why We Love Them: A high-performance, stylish suit that takes a good crack at diminishing its impact on the planet. 

What to Consider: It's pricey.

Canada-based Bather stormed onto the scene nearly a decade ago and has managed to bubble to the top of a highly competitive swimsuit scene. It's Technical Surf suits are as good, if not better than, any others you’ll try, with a breathable fabric that seamlessly stretches in all directions; they somehow manage to hug your thighs without being too tight. 

Yes, these are short for boardshorts at 6.5-inch inseam, but that’s the style these days. But the best part is they walk the walk on the environment by not just using mostly recycled materials, but also donating to an organization, 1 percent for the Planet, which helps ocean cleanups and marine conservation.  

Bather also sells a more traditional suit with a 5.5-inch inseam.

Inseam sizes: 6.5 inches | Material: Recycled polyester, elastane | Liner: None

Best Budget: Maamgic Men’s Swim Shorts

Maamgic Men’s Swim Shorts

Amazon

Why We Love Them: Choose from plenty of funky colors for whatever fits your vibe.

What to Consider: They aren’t as durable or soft as other bathing suits we reviewed.

From bananas to sharks to pineapples, Maamgic’s bathing suit prints bring the party to the pool or beach, but they're not just fun to look at. Maamgic’s swim shorts also dry pretty quickly and are soft enough to wear throughout the day. What else could you ask for at that price?

Inseam sizes: 7 inches | Material: Polyester | Liner: Mesh

Best Eco-friendly: Fair Harbor The Anchor Swim Trunks

Fair Harbor The Anchor Swim trunks

Fair Harbor

Why We Love Them: The interior liner is a game-changer in the fight against chafing.

What to Consider: The dry time is not super-quick.

The material used for this bathing suit is made from 12 recycled plastic bottles, but you won’t notice that when you’re wearing them, as they’re extremely soft and stretch in all directions. And while you’re feeling good about yourself for being eco-friendly, you’ll also be enjoying life without chafing, as these come with a soft boxer-brief-like liner made from the same materials as the outer suit.

Inseam sizes: 8 inches | Material: 88 percent recycled polyester and 12 percent spandex | Liner: Polyester and spandex boxer brief short

Best All-day: Everlane ReNew Swim Short

Everlane ReNew Swim Short

Everlane

Why We Love it: It’s a light and soft bathing suit you can wear all day.

What to Consider: It might be comfortable enough to wear anywhere, but it still looks like a bathing suit.

Made for swimming, hiking, biking, or whatever other adventures your trip entails, Everlane’s popular bathing suit has a unique feel that’s soft to touch and dries quickly, so you can go from the beach to the restaurant without feeling soggy. With a bit of stretch but not too much, it's comfy as well, and it's made of recycled plastic bottles, so you can feel good about wearing them. 

Inseam sizes: 7 inches | Material: Recycled nylon, elastane | Liner: Recycled polyester mesh

Best Boardshorts: Vuori Cruise Board Shorts

Vuori Cruise Board Shorts

REI

Why We Love Them: They're great for performance, and the anti-odor material keeps you fresh while chilling on the beach.

What to Consider: They claim to be eco-friendly, but they’re made from only 44 percent recycled materials.

These above-the-knee boardshorts from Vuori manage to give a surfer look without being extra-long or baggy. Stretching in four directions, they’re great for performance and dry quickly. They also have UPF 30 to block the sun and have an anti-odor material. They also come in comfortably above the knee at a 7-5-inch inseam and are available in 14 funky color combos.

Outseam size: 18.5 inches | Material: Recycled Polyester, polyester, elastane | Liner: None

Best for Hiking: Patagonia Men's Baggies Shorts

Why We Love Them: As with all Patagonia products, you’ll never have to worry about these breaking down or going out of style.

What to Consider: While comfortable, the liner is mesh.

Arguably the most popular bathing suit on this list, Patagonia’s classic Baggies are great for jumping in the lake and then continuing on with your adventure. The material is made from 100 percent recycled nylon, so you can feel good that they’re eco-friendly. If 5 inches is too short for your taste, you can get them in a longer 7-inch style.

Inseam sizes: 5 or 7 inches | Material: Nylon faille | Liner: Black mesh

Best for Training: Ten Thousand Set Short

Ten Thousand Set Short

Ten Thousand

Why We Love Them: These are super-comfortable with the boxer-brief-like liner, and they dry quickly so you can go from pool to agility drills in no time.

What to Consider: They’re pricey and tend to fit a little snugly, so consider going up a size.

For those who plan to swim and train on their travels, there are no better shorts than Ten Thousand’s Set Shorts. Stretching in all directions, they won’t inhibit your movement, and the compression liner prevents chafing. Set Shorts are also great at fighting off odors and have a solid storage scheme with two hip pockets, a zippered rear pocket, and one dedicated for your phone.

Inseam sizes: 6.5 inches | Material: 85 percent nylon, 15 percent spandex | Liner: Compression boxer brief liner

Most Comfortable: Chubbies Lined Classic Swim Trunk

Chubbies Lined Classic Swim Trunk

REI

Why We Love Them: Chubbies are renowned for comfort, but the boxer-brief liner here makes them even comfier.

What to Consider: The style is firmly a bathing suit, so you probably won’t want to keep these on all day.

Chubbies are an iconic bathing suit brand, and their patterns are always wild. But these stand out among other suits, since they come with a super-comfy liner made from almost the exact-same outer material that’s made Chubbies so famous. They also have a zippered back pocket, so you won’t lose your keys.

Inseam sizes: 5.5 inches | Material: 92 percent polyester, 8 percent spandex | Liner: 91 percent polyester, 9 percent spandex boxer-brief liner

Best Vintage: Bonobos Throwback Swim Trunks

Bonobos Throwback Swim Trunks

Bonobos

Why We Love Them: Hang out by the pool like it’s 1974, but with eco-friendly recycled polyester.

What to Consider: There are more form-fitting bathing suits for less money, and these only have a simple mesh liner.

A great style pick, Bonobos’ Throwbacks are retro in the best way possible with bold colors and a simple strip on the side. They come in more than a dozen unique styles, from pineapples to waves to bold turquoise. If 5 inches is too thigh-high, you can also get them in a 7-inch inseam. 

Inseam sizes: 5 or 7 inches | Material: 85 percent recycled polyester, 15 percent spandex | Liner: Mesh

Best Briefs: Speedo Powerflex

Speedo Powerflex

Amazon

Why We Love Them: They’re a classic European look without the lag when doing laps.

What to Consider: You'd better put sunscreen on those thighs.

If you're traveling to many parts of Europe or Brazil, long board shorts will make you stand out like a sore thumb, so blend in with the locals with a pair of swim briefs. If you do, Speedo remains the best pick for performance, though if you really want to show off, fashion brands like Versace and Calvin Klein also make swim briefs.

Inseam sizes: None | Material: 78 percent nylon, 22 percent spandex | Liner: None

Most Stylish: Orlebar Brown Bulldog

Orlebar Brown Bulldog

Orlebar Brown

Why We Love Them: Gorgeous style, and they also work as classy shorts.

What to Consider: They’re very expensive.

Britain’s Orlebar Brown makes excellent bathing suits that look like works of art, but they’ll cost you. At least for this price, you can rest assured that they’ll also look great as shorts, since they’re designed using the traditional 17-piece tailoring pattern.

Inseam sizes: 6 inches | Material: Recycled Polyester | Liner: Mesh

Tips for Buying Bathing Suits

Consider drying time

All of the bathing suits we reviewed are designed to be fast-drying. As you’ll notice, none of them is made with cotton, which doesn’t dry quickly and is the reason your regular shorts aren’t great for swimming.

Choose your preferred length

The popular style these days is shorter than it was a decade ago at 5 to 8 inches. Longer is fine if that’s what your comfort level is, but a bathing suit that fits lower than the knee will limit your mobility and take longer to dry, in addition to not fitting the current trend. 

 Think about liners

Many guys have experienced the pain of a chafing after a day at the pool. Thankfully, some brands have revolutionized the inner liner by moving away from mesh toward a compression brief style. But all mesh liners aren’t created equal—some are softer than others—and not everyone is plagued by chafing. So if you’ve never had issues with mesh, stick with that, as it’ll give you more choices.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • Are swim trunks, swimsuits, bathing suits, and boardshorts all the same thing?

    Men’s swim trunks, swimsuits, and bathing suits are all the same thing, but board shorts are a little different. They’re meant for surfing, they tend to be longer, they don’t have a liner, and they rarely have any elasticity in the waist.

  • Is it better to have a swimsuit with or without a liner?

    It’s all about preference. Board shorts come without a liner, while others have different kinds of liners, from mesh to compression boxer-brief-style shorts. You’ve probably worn a bathing suit before, and if you didn’t mind the mesh liner, then keep up with that. If you frequently experience chafing, maybe consider a different option.  

  • What material is good for a swimsuit?

    Material is all about softness, stretchiness, and how quickly it will dry. Many of the bathing suits we reviewed use eco-friendly recycled polyester, but you’ll also see some with nylon, elastane, or spandex. All of those are comfortable and dry quickly, so it just depends on your preference and how much you want to spend.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

Travel + Leisure writers are shopping and product experts who use personal experience and expert recommendations to choose the best items for shoppers. For this article, writer Joel Balsam, a frequent traveler who has visited more than 50 countries, reviewed and selected from the industry’s best options.

Up Next: The Best Beach Accessories for Hitting the Sand

Love a great deal? Sign up for our T+L Recommends newsletter, and we'll send you our favorite travel products each week.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles