The Edit

Swimwear That Really Makes A Splash

Dive into your vacation with our pick of the best swim shorts for men

If you’re heading anywhere with a beach or pool this summer, swimwear will be the uniform for the better part of your break. This makes getting dressed in the morning a fairly straightforward task. In theory, anyway. Going on holiday used to be a time when you could afford to let your sartorial standards slip. You’d be heading off to some far-away beach where nobody, aside from your travelling companions, knew your name and your only care in the world was where your next beer was coming from. These days, thanks in large part to Instagram, that’s no longer an option. The stakes are now unquestionably high when it comes to your holiday attire, but stylish options are available at MR PORTER. Here are the swim shorts that’ll keep you in your followers’ good books this summer.

A BRIGHT IDEA

Given that they’re usually whipped out for the purposes of basking in the sun, it’s fine if your swim shorts are rather bright. In fact, it’s encouraged. These trunks from Swedish underwear brand CDLP are made from recycled nylon and the orange shade is a tribute to the colour scheme and canopies at the palatial Grand Hotel Tremezzo, probably the one place where you won’t stand out from the crowd in them. Alternatively, for the intrepid traveller, Polo Ralph Lauren’s green pair might be a less attention-grabbing choice.

THE BOLDER THE BETTER

Mr Armin Heinemann’s Ibiza is not the international clubbing mecca of your imagination. The founder of cult boutique Paula’s Ibiza purveyed a quieter, but no less vibrant, view of island life in the 1970s. The store shut its doors in 2000, but the designer has recently teamed up with Loewe for a comeback inspired by the Balearic island’s flora and fauna. Go the whole hog and pair the graphic swim shorts from the line with a matching belt bag. Speaking of going all in, Saint Tropez-based brand Vilebrequin is particularly adept at this sort of thing. This is the label that brought us glow-in-the-dark swim shorts, after all. Less luminescent, but every bit as eye-catching, this vivid pair is printed with a charming bale of sea turtles and brightly coloured foliage. Go on, splash out.

IN BLOOM

This summer, many designers seem to be coming up roses. And daisies. And lilies. There’s no end to the variety of blooms up for grabs, whether small and sweet, courtesy of Loro Piana’s retro-inspired geometric offering, or bright and bold, as with Atalaye’s buttercup print. The accepted wisdom when it comes to wearing botanical prints is to keep the rest of your ensemble simple, but on the beach, there’s really no danger of overdoing it. Besides, summer comes but once a year.

SYMBOLS AND STRIPES

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? The beauty of abstract and geometric patterns is that they are what you want them to be. Frescobol Carioca’s swim shorts could be a meditation on the impracticalities of sunbathing on a concrete surface or a stylised depiction of Brazilian landscape architect Mr Roberto Burle Marx’s city gardens. You decide. (Hint: it’s the latter.) Whatever the case, they’re a decidedly stylish choice. Partial to the classics? Try Orlebar Brown’s understated striped pair on for size. This seersucker style prioritises practicality as much as aesthetics, hence the combination of the fabric’s cooling properties with the slimming potential of vertical stripes. Or are they horizontal? Optical science aside, these are keepers.

PASTELS MAKE PERFECT

Wearing colour doesn’t have to be hard. Ease yourself in with softer, dusty shades instead. Another reason to choose pastels is because they seem to transform every person who wears them into an extra from Call Me By Your Name, the movie that’s finally supplanted The Talented Mr Ripley as the sartorial summer film par excellence. Both the mint-green and pale coral pairs from Hartford and TOM FORD respectively will have you camera-ready in no time.

PLAIN AND SIMPLE

If you adopt no-frills style when you’re at home, why not keep it simple while you’re away? But this doesn’t necessarily have to translate to boring. White or lighter-toned swimwear, as exhibited by French brand Hartford, will contrast nicely against dark or tanned skin and bestow on you the illusion of a Greek god. If you have a fair complexion and are more likely to turn lobster-red than golden brown in the sun, Pilgrim Surf + Supply’s colour-blocked swim shorts are your friend. As well as being a bit longer in the leg, which will provide some additional protection, the darker colour will deflect attention from your rose-tinted skin.

Pool resources

  • Soleil Toujours Organic Sheer Sunscreen Mist SPF50, 177ml

  • Leica TL2 System Digital Camera

  • Eyevan 7285 Square-Frame Tortoiseshell Acetate Sunglasses

  • Malibu Canyon Woven Nylon-Webbing and Faux Leather Sandals

  • Orlebar Brown Waterproof Logo-Print Coated-Canvas Beach Bag

  • Onia Tilden Printed Cotton-Terry Beach Towel