The Best Swimsuit Cover-ups for Every Summer Style

Elevate your vacation wardrobe with cute beach cover-ups like Bishuige’s T-shirt dress.

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Courtesy of Amazon

Much like reef-safe sunscreen, a pair of chic sunglasses, and a cute bikini, swimsuit cover-ups are a summer essential. Comfort should be key when picking out yours; opt for one made from lightweight and breezy fabrics that keep you cool. Loose silhouettes are always better as they give you more freedom of movement. Plus, no one likes the feeling of sticky fabric against their skin on a hot, sweaty day. 

Of course, a good cover-up should be stylish, too. Go for easy elegance when choosing a top layer for summer. Crochet styles and those with fringes give off a carefree, retro aura, while flowy dresses can do double duty on and off the beach.

Our top pick is Bishuige's T-shirt dress, which comes at an affordable price and has everything you'd want in a swimsuit cover-up: a stylish slip-on with no sleeves and a loose fit. You can even wear it as a casual dress for sunset drinks or as a top styled with a pair of leggings.

Here are the best swimsuit cover-ups to shop right now.

Best Overall: Bishuige T-shirt Dress Beach Cover-Up

Bishuige T-shirt Dress Beach Cover-Up

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: It’s made from breathable material and has a flattering cut.

What to Consider: If you wear heavy items in the pockets, they may distort the dress's shape.

This beautiful sundress checks all the boxes of a stylish and functional swimsuit cover-up — the material is airy and easy to care for. It's made from a blend of rayon, which keeps the body cool and wicks away moisture, and spandex that gives the dress a nice stretch. The dress has a very flattering A-line silhouette, which means it fits a bit loose but not to the point of looking oversized. The classic style features a crew neckline and is easy to slip into. The hemline hits just above the knee or longer, depending on your height. Away from the pool and beach, the breezy garment also makes for a perfect casual summer dress. And with 45 color and print options to choose from, you may find yourself adding more than one style to your cart.

Fabric: Rayon, spandex | Sizes: S to 3XL

Best Two-piece: Fancyinn 2-Piece Cover-Up

FANCYINN 2-Piece Cover-Up

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: The high-waisted pants are extremely flattering.

What to Consider: People whose chest size differs from their pants size may want to consider separates.

You can easily take this multifunctional matching set beyond the beach. The top has a stylish cropped silhouette with ruffles along the sleeve and a hemline that fashion-conscious beachgoers will certainly appreciate. The deep V-neckline elongates the torso and is ideal for showing off a necklace or two. 

High-waisted pants are notoriously flattering and this pair is no exception. Designed with elastic and adjustable drawstring closure, they put comfort above all. The wide legs and side slits that reach below the hips allow you to move freely and won't stick to your legs even if it's a sweltering day. And speaking of hot weather, our favorite thing about this summer-y set is the fabric. Made from airy cotton, this two-piece cover-up won't make you sweaty and wicks away moisture to keep you cool. You can style the top and pants separately with other pieces of clothing, so the set is truly a styling powerhouse.

Material: Cotton | Sizes: XS to XL | Colors: 16 options

Best Caftan: Bsubseach Women Beachwear Turkish Kaftan

Bsubseach Turkish Kaftan Cover up

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: The drawstring allows you to adjust the fit.

What to Consider: The fabric wrinkles easily, so it might need to be ironed before slipping into it.

This bold caftan will surely add a pop of color to your vacation wardrobe. It comes in 30 print options that run the gamut from classic monochrome choices such as black and white to psychedelic multicolored prints. It has a classic caftan cut: wide sleeves that drape beautifully and reach just above the elbows for some extra coverage on the beach, and an overall loose fit that flatters the body and will keep you cool. If you prefer a more fitted silhouette, you can adjust the waist drawstring and shape it into an A-line dress. The two side slits only open from the knee down, so it's really not a revealing style. And speaking of showing some skin, while the rayon material is light and breezy, it's not sheer, so you can certainly wear this caftan off the beach, too.

Material: Rayon | Sizes: One-Size (fits S–XL)

Related: The Most Comfortable Sandals for Women

Best Crochet: Jeasona Crochet Dress Cover Up

Jeasona Crochet Dress Cover Up

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: The high-low design gives extra coverage at the back.

What to Consider: It is very sheer.

Crochet beach cover-ups exude an artisanal vibe that looks effortlessly stylish. Looks aside, this cover-up is also loaded with functional features. It has a loose fit for maximum comfort and wide drapey sleeves. The two side drawstrings feature tassels that help you adjust the height of the side slits, which is an added bonus both in terms of style and convenience. If you prefer a more fitted look, you can size down.

This cover-up is made from a soft and airy polyester. The crochet pattern is absolutely beautiful, and if you have a nude slip dress, you can even wear it as a high-low dress with a pair of wedges.

Material: Polyester | Sizes: S to XL | Colors: 6 options

Best Shorts: Madewell Lightspun Easy Pull-on Shorts

Madewell Lightspun Easy Pull-on Shorts

Courtesy of Zappos

Why We Love It: The cotton gauze fabric is incredibly soft and breezy.

What to Consider: They run large and can look bulky at the hips because of the pockets.

From the fit to the fabric, these shorts were made with comfort and hot weather in mind. They have a pull-on, high-waist design that compliments all body types. The extra wide elastic also beautifully defines and accentuates the waist. The leg openings are generously sized and won't ride up, bunch, or restrain your movements.  

Now, let's talk material. There is cotton and then there is cotton gauze. The open, airy weave makes for breathable clothing perfect for the beach. Another bonus? The fabric has a bit of stretch in it, which is great if you stay active on the beach. Madewell created this pair of shorts using two layers of cotton gauze to prevent them from being see-through. The shorts have pockets where you can carry small items such as a credit card and keys.

Material: Cotton gauze | Sizes: XXS to XXL

Best Mini Dress: Pinziko Women's Summer Beach Dress

Pinziko Women's Summer Beach Dress

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: The fringe hemline is beautiful.  

What to Consider: It has a fitted cut that's not especially flowy.

There is no doubt that the fringed detail transforms this cover-up from a simple mini dress to an eye-catching stunner. The knotted fringes give the illusion of a longer asymmetrical hemline. The dress is cut from a blend of polyester and spandex, so you can expect it to have a bit of stretch, which is helpful given that it fits relatively close to the body. Having said that, while you can wash the dress in the washing machine in cold water, don't dry it in the dryer, or it might shrink. The material is thin and airy but not sheer.

Material: Polyester, spandex | Sizes: S to XXXL

Best Sarong: Ingear Beach Long Batik Sarong

Ingear Beach Long Batik Sarong


Why We Love It: It comes with a free coconut shell closure.

What to Consider: It only comes in one size.

A good sarong is the gift that keeps on giving. It is the most versatile accessory/piece of clothing you could ever own and is the quintessential swimsuit cover-up. This one is made from light rayon that can be machine washed in cold water. It is generously sized at 63 x 44 inches and allows you to tie it in dozens of ways (so you can don a different outfit on the beach every day). It also comes with a free coconut shell to secure it with. The tassels add a playful element to the sarong, which you can also use as a beach towel or even a table cloth (we told you it's a multifunctional wonder). The Ingear beach sarong comes in 33 shades and prints, so finding one that fits your style preferences will be a breeze.

Material: Rayon | Sizes: One size

Best Maxi Dress: Huskary Women's Summer Maxi Dress

Huskary Women's Summer Maxi Dress

Courtesy of Amazon

Why We Love It: The loose fit and side slits are perfect for the beach.

What to Consider: It may be too long for those on the shorter side.

What makes this dress the perfect beach cover-up are the flowy cut and thin and airy material. Made from a stretchy blend of polyester and spandex, it fits loose and has an effortlessly trendy energy to it. The fabric is not see-through, so you can easily transition from the beach to the restaurant in this dress. The drop shoulder sleeves provide extra arm coverage, while the maxi length will cover your entire legs. The side slit allows you to move freely and is another stylish feature of this pretty beach cover-up.

Material: Polyester, spandex | Sizes: XS to XXL

Related: The Best Sunglasses for Every Trip

Best Jumpsuit: Mikoh Sayama Jumpsuit

Mikoh Sayama Jumpsuit


Why We Love It: The loose, retro-inspired design is beautiful.

What to Consider: The straps are non-adjustable.

Brave the hot summer sun in style with this chic Mikoh jumpsuit made from breezy cotton gauze. The fabric doesn't wrinkle easily, so this jumpsuit is a great travel option. The low-cut sides will keep you cool while also showing off your cute bathing suit underneath. It has a cropped leg design and a loose fit that makes putting it on and taking it off super easy. It's the ultimate one-and-done outfit.

Material: Cotton | Sizes: 0 to 3 (XS-L)

Best Kimono-style: Moss Rose Women's Beach Cover-up

Moss Rose Women's Beach Cover-up


Why We Love It: It comes in 43 print options and is super stylish.

What to Consider: It has slits on the sides that might be too showy for some.

If airy is what you're after, then this kimono wrap is the way to go. It is made of soft and lightweight viscose. The cover-up has an open front (with no belt or any other type of closure) and side slits that are separated by the sleeves (that reach the elbows) with a short stitch line. The front and the back have a slightly asymmetrical silhouette that drapes beautifully. The bolt prints, of which there are 45 to choose from, are perfect for those who like to add a pop of color to their beach ensembles. 

Material: Viscose | Size: One size

Best Romper: O'Neill Cantina Romper Cover-up

O'Neill Cantina Romper Cover-Up

Dick Sporting Goods

Why We Love It: It's easy to slip into and has an elastic waist.

What to Consider: It is quite see-through.

O'Neill's romper has a flattering wrap front that stays in place thanks to a hidden button. The adjustable back allows you to modify the fit of the upper section and the depth of the V-neckline. The elastic waist adds a bit of structure and formality to the silhouette without sacrificing comfort. Speaking of which, the wide legs with their asymmetrical cut are certainly made with lounging in mind. While the fabric is viscose, which is not known as the most breathable material, the romper's low-cut sides and overall fit will ensure your body stays cool even on scorching days.

Material: Viscose | Sizes: XS to XXL

Best Pants: Prana Fernie Beach Pant

prAna Fernie Beach Pant


Why We Love It: It has a wide-legged cut and relaxed fit.

What to Consider: The pants in white are see-through.

Not only is the Tencel material this beach pant is made of sustainable, but it's also incredibly lightweight and breathable. The crumpled texture is wrinkle-friendly, so your pants will look great even if you carry them in a tote with your other beach essentials. It has a mid-rise cut with a wide elastic band and a drawstring to ensure a perfect fit, and the inseam measures 30 inches. It’s available in four color options, including a vertical, multi-striped pattern that is a quintessential beach aesthetic.

Material: Tencel | Sizes: XS to XL

Related: The Best Women’s Swimsuits

Best Skirt: J.Crew Cotton Voile Side-tie Beach Skirt

J.Crew Cotton Voile Side-tie Beach Skirt


Why We Love It: It has an elastic waist.

What to Consider: It has a high side slit.

An easy-breezy skirt looks elegant with every type of swimwear and gives you some extra coverage. This J.Crew number comes in a beautiful pink shade and has an A-line silhouette. The stretchy waist has a self-tie which means you can adjust the rise according to your preferences (we love the look of a high-rise skirt, though). Keep in mind that the organic cotton fabric is on the sheer side. Depending on your height, the skirt will either end up ankle-length or longer.

Fabric: Cotton | Sizes: XXS to 3XL

Best Shirt: Ekouaer Women's Swimsuit Beach Cover-up Shirt

Ekouaer Women's Swimsuit Beach Cover Up Shirt


Why We Love It: The sleeve length is adjustable.

What to Consider: It could shrink after you wash it.

Lightweight shirts are a classic swimsuit cover-up option. This rayon shirt’s most notable feature is the roll drop shoulder sleeves, which can be adjusted from short to long if you need more coverage or are wearing it on a chilly evening. The open collar has no buttons and is the epitome of easy elegance. The high-low hemline looks trendy and gives you extra coverage at the back. It's even long enough to wear without shorts underneath. It comes in 45 print and shade options.

Material: Rayon | Sizes: S to 3XL

Best Sun-protective: Coolibar Women's Catalina Beach Cover-up Dress UPF 50+

Coolibar Women's Catalina Beach Cover-up Dress UPF 50+


Why We Love It: It has a hood and long sleeves.

What to Consider: It has a mini silhouette.

The hoodie-inspired design of this dress delivers extra coverage and sun protection. The drawstrings at the V-neckline will help you secure the hood. The patch pockets may not be super big or deep, but they can fit a credit card, a lip balm, and keys. The hemline reaches mid-thigh or longer, depending on your height. But the star of the show is the UPF 50+ fabric with zinc oxide particles, which help protect you from the sun's harmful rays and won't wash away after you wash it.

Material: Cotton, viscose | Sizes: XXS to 3XL

Tips for Buying a Swimsuit Cover-up

Choose the fabric well

First and foremost, a swimsuit cover-up should be breathable and airy. Fabrics such as cotton, linen, rayon, and polyester are known for being lightweight and water-repellent. They are also easy to care for — you can usually throw them in the washing machine and air dry. Also, keep in mind that your swimsuit cover-up will be in contact with sunscreen, so choose a material that won't stain easily.

Go for effortless style

The last thing you want is to waste pressure beach time trying to put on and adjust your swimsuit cover-up. Go for a slip-on style that is chic and functional. A looser fit is always more convenient, and if your primary concern is sun protection, the longer the sleeves and hemline, the better. Avoid swimsuit cover-ups with back zippers or many buttons or overly complicated closures such as multiple belt buckles.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

T+L writers like Dobrina Zhekova use their personal experience, customer recommendations, and professional expertise to research and select the best-looking and most functional apparel. Here, she put her fashion and travel experience to work and curated a list of swimsuit cover-ups to fit every style and budget.

Up Next: The Most Comfortable Flip-flops of 2022

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