Whether you prefer to lounge poolside with a beverage in hand or are busy catching waves all summer long, a small collection of cute, quality swimsuits is a must. However, when it’s time to buy a new one, you have two options: trying on swimsuits in-store, where you may be at the mercy of harsh lighting and 360-degree mirrors, or in the comfort of your own home when you’re feeling your best. We vote for the latter.
Every place on the below list offers flexible return policies, as well as a wide range of silhouettes, patterns, sizes, and price ranges so you can find the best style for your next beach day. Happy shopping!
Solid & Striped
Name a pattern—any pattern—and chances are Solid + Striped has it in swimsuit form. The same goes for cuts, materials, and textures too. The extensive selection earns the brand the top spot of the best overall place to buy swimsuits. From belted one-pieces to one-shouldered designs to stripes, gingham, and so much more, it has it all in a wide range of prices, coverage, and colors too.) “I could shop for days on Solid + Striped,” says stylist Chantelle Hartman Malarkey. “Their unique trending designs, colors, and cuts are dreamy! I love their modern vintage looks too. If you’re looking for a suit that’s memorable, look no further.”
Return Policy: Within 30 days of purchase with a $6.95 restocking fee | Shipping Policy: Free two-day shipping for orders over $150 | Size Range: XS–XL
For swimsuit styles on a budget, you can’t beat Amazon. The seemingly endless inventory, much of which is in a lower price range, allows you to browse all kinds of styles, from classic to trendy. With easy returns and easy-on-the-wallet prices, Amazon makes swimsuit shopping, well, easy. So, why not try out a new-to-you style or a color that’s out of your comfort zone? Our advice is to search by four-star-plus reviews so you can narrow down the (many, many) options to ones that already have the thumbs up from reviewers.
Return Policy: Within 30 days of purchase | Shipping Policy: Free with Prime membership; varies otherwise | Size Range: XXS–8XL
Best Size Range
With swimsuits ranging in size from XXS to 5XL, Good American wins the “best size range” award. Not only does it offer a wide spectrum of sizes, but any of its suits in the “Always Fits” style have extra flexible sizing. Those designs, made of a sculpting crinkle fabric, stretch up or down a size, taking the guessing game out of online swimwear shopping. Good luck narrowing down a favorite style though.
Return Policy: Within 21 days of the ship date | Shipping Policy: Free shipping for orders over $125 | Size Range: XXS–5XL
Our love for Mara Hoffman knows no bounds. All of her designs, swimwear included, are investment pieces—ones you’ll have and love for years (and years) to come. Her swimsuits are released on a rolling basis all year long, so there’s always something new to daydream about wearing on a Caribbean island. They come in cool silhouettes with fun colors in a wide range of sizes. You can feel good about spending a few extra dollars on a Mara Hoffman swimsuit knowing it’s made from recycled materials, too.
“Not only are her cuts and prints beautiful and different, but all of her swimwear is made from recycled nylon or polyester,” says television stylist Dina Cerchione. “And she offers extended sizes making it a truly sustainable and inclusive brand.”
Return Policy: Within 14 days of delivery | Shipping Policy: Free shipping on orders over $400 | Size Range: XS–3X
For a little bit of everything swimwear-wise—supportive one-pieces, itsy bitty bikinis, and all styles in between—shop Nordstrom’s wide selection. (We’re talking 60 or so pages of swimsuits and cover-ups.) It carries a variety of brands you already know and love, like Seafolly, Sea Level, and Billabong all in one place. Nordstrom’s flexible return policy window is extra appealing too.
Return Policy: Free returns with no time limit | Shipping Policy: Free shipping | Size Range: XXS–4X
Cool silhouettes, eye-catching patterns, and overall daring designs—that’s what page after page of Shopbop’s swimsuit collection contains. We couldn’t love it more. Scroll through its options and chances are you’ll feel empowered to rock colors and cut you never could have imagined yourself wearing. It offers plenty of swimsuits from brands and designers you may already love, like Cult Gaia and Tory Burch, and will likely expose you to your soon-to-be new favorite brands and designers, too.
Return Policy: Free returns within 15 days; $10 fee if returned between 16 to 30 days after the delivery date | Shipping Policy: Free 1- to 3-day shipping | Size Range: XXS–3XL
Whether you’re pregnant, are nursing, or recently welcomed a little one, congrats all around! There’s no need to skip beach days during this special time. Motherhood offers swimsuits of all styles, and no, you don’t have to sacrifice style to be comfortable. Shop its oh-so-cute swimsuits that stretch with your growing belly or its postpartum designs that offer gentle compression and clip-down tops that make nursing a breeze.
Return Policy: Free returns within 30 days | Shipping Policy: Free shipping on orders over $99 | Size Range: XS–XL
Ever since Everlane hit the online shopping scene in 2010, it’s been transparent about its pricing and extra conscious of its materials. This is especially the case with its swimwear collection. Every piece is made with ECONYL yard, a regenerated nylon fiber made from nylon waste that’s been rescued from all around the globe. (Think fishing nets, carpet flooring, fabric scraps, and industrial plastic.) The fact that its suits are flattering and forever in style, too? All the better.
Return Policy: Mail-in returns are accepted within 30 days of the ship date with a $7 shipping label | Shipping Policy: Free shipping for orders over $75 | Size Range: XXS–XXL
Summersalt has proven what we’ve known all along: one-pieces can be just as interesting and alluring as bikinis. No matter your size or shape, Summersalt’s one-pieces have a way of accentuating your curves in all the right ways. That’s thanks to superior compression and smart design features, like perfectly placed ruffles and wrap styles. No matter which option you add to your cart, you’re bound to feel equally comfortable and stylish, whether you’re poolside or taking a dip in the ocean.
Return Policy: Mail-in returns are accepted within 21 days of the delivery date with an $8 handling fee | Shipping Policy: Free shipping for orders over $250 | Size Range: XS–2X
If ruching, ruffles, and wild colors aren’t your style, shop Madewell’s swimwear collection. Its designs are a minimalist’s dream—they’re simple and classic yet fresh and far from boring. Choose from a black square neck one-piece with a low, low, low back or a beautiful blush-colored set with a spaghetti-strap bandeau top and high-waisted bottoms. Then debate between getting a sweet floral design or sticking with a solid. Tough choices, we know. While you’re at it though, you may as well add one of the breezy cover-ups to your cart too.
Return Policy: Within 30 days | Shipping Policy: Free for Madewell Insiders or $3 for economy shipping | Size Range: XXS–4X
Name a pattern and chances are Solid + Striped has it in swimsuit form. The same goes for cuts, materials, and textures, too, which is why the brand takes our top spot. For an even wider selection and low pricing (perfect for those who want to build a collection on a budget), we suggest shopping on Amazon.
What to Look for in Swimsuits
If you’re unsure of your swimsuit size, consult a brand’s size guide and use a soft measuring tape to take the corresponding measurements. That should narrow down which size you choose, but if you’re still wavering between two, you might want to add both to your cart knowing you’ll return one. Just be sure you’re well aware of a brand’s return policy.
The best places to buy swimsuits carry a blend of classic, can’t-go-wrong designs with swimsuits with trendy silhouettes and daring cuts. (Like a knit design or a one-piece with interesting cut-outs.) Which one you ultimately add to your cart is up to you, but the option to scroll between suits you know you’ll love forever and others that challenge you style-wise is ideal.
Most swimsuits are made out of a blend consisting mainly of nylon, polyester, or polyamide with a touch of stretch thanks to elastane—otherwise called spandex. That durable combination can withstand plenty of movement, as well as repeated exposure to chlorine, sun exposure, sea salt, and washings too. If sustainability is important to you, shop for swimsuits made out of recycled materials. (Mara Hoffman and Everlane are good places to start.)
Should I buy a swimsuit a size bigger?
Swimsuit sizes can vary from brand to brand, so if you’re unsure Cerchione recommends trying on two sizes to compare the fit and see which works best for your body. (You’ll want to be well aware of a brand’s return policy before purchasing though.) “Don't get wrapped up in the numbers!” she says. “All manufacturers cut differently so unless you are buying from a brand you know your size in, you may need to take a smaller or larger size than usual.”
Is it better for a swimsuit to be tight or loose?
In an ideal world, a swimsuit would be neither too tight nor too loose, and instead just right. If a swimsuit is too loose you risk it falling off at inopportune times, but a too-tight swimsuit could cause spillage out of the cups and is crazily uncomfortable. (Hello, wedgies.) Whether a swimsuit should be too tight or too loose mostly comes down to how you’ll use it though. Swim fabrics tend to stretch a bit when wet, so if you’re going to be in the water often, opt for a tiny bit too tight.
What swimwear fabrics are most comfortable?
There’s a reason—many reasons, actually—why a lot of swimwear is made out of a nylon and spandex blend. It is durable yet soft, holds its shape, and stretches in every direction, making it the most comfortable swimwear fabric.
Why Trust Byrdie
Full-time freelance writer Megan McCarty has been writing about the best of the best of fashion and design for over 15 years, and her work can be seen in InStyle, Domino, Architectural Digest, Bustle, and more. There’s nothing she loves more than a body of water—pool, ocean, lake, you name it—so she’s well-versed in buying swimsuits.