The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

From Paul Smith to Orlebar Brown, these are the designs making a splash this summer

As summer fast approaches, and that long-awaited holiday creeps up your calendar, you’ll likely be spending your days dreaming of sun, sand and sea. But, before you get ahead of yourself, it’s important that you’re well prepared on the fashion side of things. 

There’s no excuse for not keeping up your high sartorial standards even when you’re only wearing your swim shorts, so there’s a lot riding on the right pair of trunks. We’ve trawled through the latest in beachside fashion to find you the very best: Swim shorts that will turn heads on the beach and allow you to make a splash in the sea.

For the design aficionado, Paul Smith

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Paul Smith is known for pushing the boundaries of design. The British institution has created everything from suiting to furniture to cars in his pursuit of originality and, now, these efforts stretch to the beach.

Lightweight, net-lined and adorned with Smith’s signature stripe pattern, these classic-fit shorts are a perfect cornerstone of your holiday wardrobe. Lounging on a humid beach in a hot tropical country has never felt so cool.

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Men's 'Signature Stripe' Print Swim Shorts

£95

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For understated sophistication, Orlebar Brown

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Keeping things plain, but with a hint of personality, has long been a staple of fashion. Orlebar Brown, while known for picture prints and loud patterns, also ascribe to this design approach, and these trunks re the perfect example.

A strong white look serves as the basis for these swim shorts, and they are lifted with a blue and red side stripe. According to the brand, these are ‘not just a swim short — they are a short you can swim in,’ and given the tricolour of red, white and blue, we’d agree that these would be as at home on the Californian coast to the French Riviera.

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Orlebar Brown White/Red Vintage Sports Swim Shorts

£165

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For the sunshine chasers, Frescobol Carioca

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Frescobol Carioca, a clothes company from Rio De Janeiro, are one of the most colourful brands on the beach. Designed to be worn on beaches around Rio — where it can be difficult to stand out — these swim shorts are beacon bright and will ensure you turn at least a few heads.

Of course, the fit follows the brand’s contemporary tailored cut pattern, and errs on the short side to ensure maximum tan. Button side fasteners allow you to fit them perfectly to your waist, and the quick dry polyamide fabric means that they’re not just fashionable, they’re also functional.

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Frescobol Carioca Tailored Swim Shorts

£145

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For design options, Bluemint

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Designed for comfort and performance, Bluemint’s Arthus swim shorts have one of the most diverse print and colour options that we’ve ever seen. From starfishes and toucans to gingham checks and candy stripes, there’s much to choose from, and we’ve plumped for the ‘Stripey Green’ design.

It’s a classic, retro design, nodding to the designs of the past while keeping things fresh for summer 2018. Like Frescobol’s shorts, Bluemint also adopt fast-drying technology, which means that you can wade from the sea and begin exploring the streets of your holiday destination in no time.

For the eco-warrior, Fighetti

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

A brand dedicated to the production of ecological swim shorts, Fighetti has pushed itself further and further with each collection. The ‘Arcadia’ design offers a pair of shorts you can wear throughout the day, with a sleek clean cut that doesn’t feel busy, but avoids being overly simplistic.

The swim shorts are all available in solid colours, and this delicate green is our pick. So, if you’re off to Italy this summer, and want to pack a comfortable pair of swim shorts at a slightly more affordable price, then Fighetti is your one-stop-shop.

For simplistic style, Vilebrequin

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Vilebrequin’s high-end swimming shorts combine simplicity and bright colours to create a perfect staple pair of trunks. The inner part and top edge of the waistband, the drawstring, and the embroidered turtle on the left leg are all rendered in a colour that contrasts with the rest of the garment.

This affords the wearer a level of style that many trunks lack. While wearing these trunks as shorts, out of the water, your untucked linen shirt or T-shirt will cover the contrast colour, and keep your outfit looking cool and reserved. But, take off your shirt before you dive in and the extra hit of colour will give you a much-appreciated splash of personality.

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Vilebrequin Bicolor Swimwear

£170

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For the preppy look, Ralph Lauren

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Again a cheaper option, but Ralph Lauren never disappoints when it comes to design. These swim shorts, with a washed out colour and two contrast colour bands, is both classic and classy, and evoke the preppy style for which the American fashion house is globally known.

Sun-bleached in appearance and cut high on the leg for a throwback design, these swim shorts may be brand new, but they’ve got the look of a pair that’s been worn for years on various holidays, beaches and breaks. We especially like the subtle palm tree graphic on the back pocket — it is summer, after all…

The Edit: The best swim shorts for summer 2018

Ralph Lauren 6-Inch Polo Prepster Trunk

£59

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Need somewhere to rock your new swim shorts? This Bahamanian apartment is just the thing…

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