Nowadays, when a man has to buy a swimsuit, he (fortunately) has only two choices: briefs or shorts. Enough. This is the only unknown that the male mind must face when it is looking for a suitable clothing for a swim. Despite this, the choice is always complicated and the boys often give up, leaving the difficult task to wives, mothers or friends.
The concept of swimsuit has not very ancient origins because, in reality, before the Middle Ages, people used to swim in public bathrooms completely naked. With the arrival of the Black Death, however, people decided to go back to swimming in the seas, but this time with clothes on.
The real idea of men’s swimwear was in fact only born in the nineteenth century. The men of the 1800s bathed in a sort of pajamas that covered the torso, arms and stopped at the calf. At this time, it was also forbidden to show their bodies on the beach and as a result, both men and women went swimming dressed from head to toe.
In 1920, in America, an official regulation was even published for the use of swimsuits that imposed strict rules, regarding the length and type of swimwear that could be worn.
As the decades passed, restrictions on "nudity" continued to diminish and as a result, even the tissues begin to shorten more and more.
In the second half of the '900, the fashions of men’s swimwear change depending on the decade: in the '60s, the hippie movement brings bright colors and floral patterns, while in the '70s, the boxer shortens to become a brief. At the end of the 80' instead, there is a reverse process and, with the success of the TV series "Baywatch" and the advent of surfers, the leg of the shorts goes back to be longer.
The swim briefs and beach shorts are the only two types of swimwear, which have always accompanied the man in his days at the beach in the last 50 years.
The men’s swim brief is dedicated to practicality and audacity. You know, to decide to wear a brief, the man must be aware and proud of his body. From the one who enjoys a body that remembers Michelangelo’s David and therefore gains credibility in showing his own flesh, to the one who is not interested in the shapes of his own body and therefore allows himself to exhibit it without shame (hair included), both can go choose the swimming briefs without any problem.
In this category you can choose, for example, the printed collections of men’s swimming brief by Dsquared2, which refer to an urban and irreverent style, or, if you want to emulate the men protagonists of 90% of advertising perfumes, you can’t help but think of the Dolce & Gabbana beach briefs that, with their campaigns, have made many women dream and demoralized many men.
Obviously, if you enter the sports sphere, the problematic choice between beach brief or shorts does not even arise. Men’s swim briefs are unquestionably the rulers of athletic swimming. Their shape and their technical material, in fact, are designed to make optimal the exercise of swimming.
Beach shorts, which can be short and stretch, thus resembling to briefs with the difference that it covers from waist to about half thigh, or can be non-elastic, knee-length like the Carhartt’s one or shorter like Dries Van Noten’s beach shorts. Made popular by surfers in the 80s, they represent a more conservative choice that is far from the practicality needed for an intense swimming session. Training with men’s beach shorts, in fact, is a little like showing up at the gym in a shirt.
On the beach, however, the argument is reversed because, in this context, the ease is far more prevalent than functionality. So, you can see, for example, the sudden change in the figure of an ordinary employee, forced all year round to slip into an uncomfortable suit, which breaks the formal aesthetic canons showing off any model of men’s beach shorts.
It may not seem like it, but the choice, at least of colors, is quite vast as we can see in the multicolored collections of Kiton beach shorts, or in those that light up with attractive prints like those of Philipp Plein, until you get to the floral patterns of Valentino’s swimsuits.
For those who, on the other hand, do not feel the slightest daring and prefer the dear and old solid color, Brunello Cucinelli beach shorts will flood, in a classic and elegant way, your days at the beach. But it must be said that even Gucci swimsuits, as well as those of Burberry, from the typical tartan print, know their way in terms of classicism and elegance.
Do you love streetwear?? Here too, the choices can vary between the Off-White beach shorts collections, distinguished by their iconic prints, or the Palm Angels monogram swimsuits that give that urban touch to the beach style. For those who prefer to go total streetwear we recommend the combination of Supreme’s beach towel plus men’s beach shorts.
These models are obviously based on an idea of relaxation, style and lightness of those who aim to spend the whole day lying in the sun, aware that the most challenging activity will be a game of tennis rackets with feet in the water in the late afternoon. Those who know that their day will be filled with aquatic adventures must aim at more sporty models such as Vans’ beach shorts, suitable for a long session of surfing, or the Adidas’ swimwear collections, dedicated to acrobatic evolutions with dives from the rocks.
Sometimes, however, men's beach shorts are so casual that you can think of making use of it outside the sphere of the shore. Better to avoid. No one likes to see a man sitting comfortably at the happy-hour wearing his still wet swimsuit and with a few grains of sand attached. In this case, better opt for a classic pair of men's bermuda.
As for fabrics, nylon and microfiber are the most popular materials, as they dry quickly and do not crease. An example of who has made this fabric a flagship of their collections is Prada and of course, even the proposals of swimwear, are no less.
At the same time, however, there are those who choose to propose men’s swimwear in cotton, such as Marcelo Burlon’s beach shorts which, after a day of heat, sand and unforeseen of all kinds, can give that wonderful and lived-in appereance.
The men’s swimsuits are, compared to the rest of the male wardrobe, items to buy without paying too much attention to detail (luckily!). The only thing to care about is that the costume does not come off the moment you dive into the water (which is why almost all the costumes have the drawstring!).