Although it might not seem like it when looking at the weather forecast, summer is just around the corner. (I promise you!) While international holidays to far-flung destinations may still feel relatively out of the question, I am determined to get myself to a beach in the near future, one way or another.
Filled with a sense of optimism for the summer ahead and a yearning to start planning my holiday wardrobe, this week (amongst the rain showers and hail storms), I set out to discover exactly which swimwear trends are on the horizon for 2021. Speaking with seven designers behind some of the most in-demand bikini brands—including Jade Swim, Hunza G, and Evarae—I discovered that, for many, this summer is all about feel-good fashion.
Almost every designer told me they've gone all-in on smile-inducing shades and looks that add a little extra joy to our wardrobes. In terms of silhouettes, it appears we're seeing a shift towards versatility, with several designers noting the creation of multiway bikini tops that can be tied in different ways to create new silhouettes. When it comes to fabrication, shine and sheen are definitely on the rise.
So whether you're planning a trip to Portugal or simply the local park, keep scrolling to read all about the swimwear trends you're set to see this summer.
1. Jade Swim
Photo:Courtesy of Jade Swim
"We're seeing brights as a trend for the summer. Everyone is ready to get out more—in a safe way, of course—so our summer collection is full of bold colours like Lava (red), Lapis (royal blue), Nectar (hot orange) and more. Specialty fabrics are also a trend this summer, and our Sheen fabric has been incredibly popular. Customers love it because it's a subtle update to our normal Matte fabric that adds a luxe and unique touch to our minimal styles. Ruching details are also trending. You can see this in our styles such as the Ava Bandeau, Lana Bottom, and Yara One Piece, which are also becoming best sellers." — Brittany Kozerski Freeney, owner/designer of Jade Swim
Photo:Courtesy of Hunza G
"For 2021, I think it's about colour—lavenders, pistachios, oranges, emeralds, pinks. They're bright but not neon. We have all been locked away for so long that people are just so excited to get to the beach. Also, high-waisted pants are making a big comeback versus the super-skimpy bikini that we saw everywhere last year." — Georgiana Huddart, co-founder of Hunza G
3. Jonathan Simkhai
Photo:Courtesy of Jonathan Simkhai
"We're feeling a strong focus on bright, joyful colours and bold prints. After a roller coaster of a year, I feel that everyone is yearning for freshness and positivity in all aspects of life right now, so people will gravitate towards more daring swim dressing. We are particularly into our best-selling strappy bikini, the Harlen Top and Emmalyn Bottom. It hits all the right notes of a flattering fit, exciting strappy detail and will soon be offered in fresh new colours." — Jonathan Simkhai, founder of Jonathan Simkhai
4. Mello the Label
Photo:Courtesy of Mello the Label
"I think multi-tie bikini tops are going to be big for summer 2021. They make it easy to tan, and you can wear it in several different ways, so it feels like you've invested in multiple tops. You can also wear it out and layer it under a boyfriend shirt or blazer. Plus, it fits all different body types since you can wear it however it fits your body the best." — Cindy Mello, founder of Mello the Label
Photo:Courtesy of Evarae
"Everyone's looking forward to being able to travel again and feel their best, so this summer will definitely be all about those confident, special styles to be seen in. We see a trend towards elevated looks with statement detailing such as a sculpted ruffle, like our Otto swimsuit, or colour-blocking with a wide belt, like the Cassandra." — Georgia Thompson, founder of Evarae
6. Same Los Angeles
"Suits with interesting and fun cut-outs are going to be very popular for summer 2021. It's a trend in the fashion world, and a lot of times, these trends carry over to swimwear. Same's Hunter and Taylor one-pieces have such fun and sexy (but also flattering) cut-outs. I think we'll see a lot of bright prints and fun colours since 2020 was such a down year for everyone and people are excited about this summer and ready to stand out." — Shea Marie, CEO/creative director of Same Los Angeles
Photo:Courtesy of La'Mariette
"For summer 2021, we're anticipating lots of micro-strings and multiway tops. Micro-strings allow for minimal tan lines, and multiway tops make you feel like you're wearing something different each time. It keeps things feeling fresh and stylish. We're also going to see a lot of low-cut bottoms and bottoms with less coverage. Also, bold prints, neon and bright colours as well as shiny fabrics since everyone is looking forward to a fun-filled summer with fewer restrictions now that things are becoming safer again." — Theresa Mingus and Morgan Brutocao, co-founders La'Mariette