Cool Men’s Swim Trunks and Shorts


When choosing the best men’s swim shorts, there are a lot of options out there. There is a vast range of coverage from tiny Euro briefs to baggy board shorts, though we’re not recommending either of those.

Rather than revealing or hiding everything, look for a tailored swimsuit that fits like a great pair of shorts. Sean Connery as James Bond wore it best, especially with the now rare swim belt.

Features to look for in flattering trunks are a fly and flat front. The seams and layers of a fly provide extra coverage when the bathing suit clings to the body on the way out of the water. Even better for comfort and protection is a velcro fly. A flat front is preferable to an elastic waist, which can emphasize a belly and love handles. True to the name, the flat front sits flat on hard and softer bodies.

The experts at GQ say that the best fit is short but not tight. That’s true even if you’re not rocking retro hipster styles. There are lots of shorter retro swim trunks out there that will have you looking like vintage Bond. Or if you want to show less leg, the same structured cuts are available at multiple leg lengths.

Check out these 5 cool men’s swim trunks and shorts to get ready for summer.


1. Katin USA Tux Trunks

This is the brand that invented heavy-duty-won’t-slip-off surf shorts in 1959 with their signature Katin Kanvas. Katin is still one of the go-to brands, selling swimwear out of the original Surfside, CA shop. Current shorts are made out of medium-weight nylon. Also check out their patterns like these 90s-influenced tumbleweed swim shorts 

2. Original Penguin Fixed Box Micro Gingham Swim Short

For the shorter Bond-style swim shorts, look to the classic styling of Original Penguin. These Box Fit shorts have the aforementioned flat front and fly. They same fit also comes in bold patterns. For a longer leg, check out the volley fit that is a essentially a fitted board short.

3. Brooks Brothers Retro 4″ Gingham Swim Trunks

These trunks are basically a tailored short made out of waterproof material. Detailing includes rubber buttons, a watch pocket, and inner coin pocket. The 4″ in-seam is labeled as retro but when enough guys see how great these look, they will be trendy.

4. Onia Calder 7.5

One of the top swim shorts brands for me, Onia’s signature style is inspired by the classic chino and constructed like high end dress pants for a tailored fit, even at the beach. They have a range of patterns available including liberty art, prints, and solids. The same fit is also available in shorter 5″ and longer 10″ in-seams.

5. J. Crew 6.5″ Tab Swim Short

Buying swim trunks from a reputable menswear label ensures quality construction and a great fit. J. Crew’s men’s swim shorts are the best ever, updated a slimmer fit, breathable mesh lining, and moisture-wicking, quick-drying nylon. The tab closure at the waist is similar to the tailoring found on a good pair of pants and makes the transition from the beach to a barbecue in style.