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How to Buy a Men's Swimsuit That Doesn't Look Corny

Looking for a suit that doesn't read 'giant baby'? Here are the best men's swimsuits, from tie-dyed RVCA shorts to Don Draper-approved trunks.
Ian Burke
Brooklyn, US
June 16, 2021, 7:21pm
mens swimsuits collage
COMPOSITE BY VICE STAFF

It’s that time of year again, boys. Whether you love the beach and all of its sandy trappings, or you get dragged there by a family member, friend, or significant other, you need to stock up on some solid beach gear, and you need to invest in a good pair of swim trunks. 

“Swim trunks” may sound a little infantile, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. A quick search informed us that the term has been around for a looong time, and it refers to the good ol’ days when grown men wore underwear that went up and around their torsos, or “trunks.” Which, nice. We should bring those back. (You first, though.) 

Unfortunately, full-body underwear went out of style many moons ago, so now we’re stuck with shorts that don’t even rein in the navel. Alas, we’ve gotta work with what we got, which is why we strung together a few of our favorite swimsuits that are sure to stay in style until early-1900s body trunks start lining the shelves of L-Train Vintage. [Shudders.]

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Until then, enjoy the ride. 

You were a high school goth 

… And now you’re a RVCA stan. We see you—but for the record, there’s nothing wrong with going for that toned-down goth look. (Bangs, MCR T-shirt, and disaffected look not included.)

Hop to it

These lightweight, quick-drying shorts are “vibrant enough to make waves when they hit the water.” Did one of us write that? We hope not. 

Psycho Bunny

Mens Big and Tall Rushup Swim Trunks

Trunks, Swim Trunks. 

Diamonds might be forever, but these 007 swim shorts are for NOW. Live out your British secret agent fantasies as you splash around in some sleek skinnies. 

Orlebar Brown

Thunderball Swimshort 007

Your dad was wearing these when you were conceived 

Can’t you picture a hairy-chested dude diving off a cliff off the coast of France in these bad boys? We can. 

Nautica

Vintage Nautica Lined Swim Trunks Color Block

Subtle elegance

Until you pass out near the pool. These trunks are super soft, quick-drying, and made with UPF 50+ fabric that blocks at least 97.5% of the sun's UV rays.

L.L. Bean

Men's Classic Supplex Sport Shorts, 8"

Tell people you’re a lifeguard

… But don’t come crying to us if you get in trouble. These classic red shorts feature a mesh lining, a drawstring waistband, and (thank god) side pockets.

asos

Swim Shorts in Red, Mid Length

Et tu, braj? 

You can go in one of two directions here: floral and tasteful, or dope and dope. (And by dope we mean a retro, cargo-short-style, over-the-knee masterpiece.) The choice is yours.

Kanu Surf

Men's Miles Swim Trunks

Insta-friendly bottoms

We love the Married… With Children energy of this animal-print pair of trunks—and you've gotta love a matching shirt.

PacSun

PacSun Wilfred Eco Camp Shirt

PacSun

Eco Cheetah Floral 17" Swim Trunks

You want that OG sailor look

All that’s missing is the hat. As one reviewer noted, “these are for my friend lol,” so you know they’re what’s up. (They also have a 4.9 average rating out of 1,425 reviews, FYI.)

Shein

Men Stripe Drawstring Swim Trunks

The “just got out of bed” shorts 

These washed-out, vintage-looking trunks from Nordstrom feature a back pocket for your GameBoy. (Are those waterproof?) You can also wear these on land, which is great for some post-beach bar hopping. 

Vintage Summer

Solid Washed Nylon Swim Trunks

1980 called, it wants its swimsuit back (and we answered)

These trunks are giving off Jazz vibes, and we’re here for it. They also have a Velcro pocket and come in a slew of different prints. 

Maagic

Mens Swim Trunks

Understated, not underestimated 

Simple, sleek, sophisticated. For the more refined swimmer. Yeah, we never really thought of ourselves as J. Crew people, but some of us are over 30 now, or shopping for Father’s Day

J.Crew

6" Swim Trunk in Seersucker

These shorts are anything but a lemon

Don’t let girls have all the fun, pricey athleisure-wear. Lululemon is for men, too! What else are you going to wear to the rooftop Mr. Purple, or literally anywhere in SoHo? 

Lululemon

Active Swim Short 8"

Find your beach, folks. 


The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. VICE may receive a small commission if you buy through the links on our site.