These Swimsuits Double As Sports Bras, so I’ll Be Wearing Them Long Past Labor Day

Photo: Getty Images/ Cavan Images
I’ve long been a believer in strategic swimwear. I love when a triangle top that peeks out during a dance-floor move can be excused as a bathing suit, or a when bandeau bikini that gives new, family-gathering-appropriate life to a v-neck that might have otherwise been cut too low. In my opinion, a swimsuit styled with actual clothing is the definition of summer outfit perfection.

And applying this double-duty move to activewear—aka wearing your bikini top as a sports bra—is not only stylish, but it's actually a fairly logical move. For me, throwing on a supportive bathing suit and heading to a workout about the ease of wear, and also about getting twice the bang for your bathing suit buck... even if swimming isn’t even part of the equation that day. Practicing free yoga stretches in my living room to Amazon Prime’s finest instructors means that a torso-flattering Boys + Arrows Phil Top ($98) can provide just the right lines and lift without the pressure. And for frisbee tosses on the actual beach, Cover’s Swim Sports Bra ($100) is a real winner. This multitasking attitude has been everywhere lately, as brands give bikini/sports bra hybrids new life both in and out of the water.

Photo: Athleta

Made from recycled fabric, this sleek but stretchy top is great for everything from surfing to swimming to paddle-boarding, but can also moonlight as your new favorite, supportive sports bra for non-water activities (think: beach soccer, yoga, pilates, or a leisurely jog). The hidden, underwire design gives it an extra level of keep it all in security, while the bright pop of color is perfect to have peeking out from under your favorite workout top, worn on its own, or paired with the brand's matching Surge Short ($54) for the full 'fit.

Athleta Bra Cup Square Neck Bikini Top ($64)


Photo: Boys + Arrows

Boys + Arrows Dizzy Izzy Bikini Top ($18)

For even more of these either/or options, forward-thinking brands are riding the wave of multitasking activewear. Boys + Arrows, the swim line that sews its pieces locally in So-Cal, pushes the boundaries of traditional suits. The Dizzy Izzy ($18) top—described as “a nod to sports bras”—is designed with motion in mind, and the brand boasts that “pretty much anything active you can think of, Izzy can do it with you.” For more relaxed classes where stretching and movement is paramount, their “sporty fit” Phebe the Feminist Top ($128) has a long line fit for additional support. Reimagining their traditional bikinis, SAME Los Angeles launched activewear via their Same Sport offshoot, which features the adorable Ruffle Bra ($95) that acts like fitness-wear—but when paired with black bikini bottoms, easily moonlights as a swim top.

Photo: Avery Tank

Wear It To Heart Avery Tank ($68)

In addition to suits that can function as sports bras, the double-duty factor works the other way around, too. Wear It To Heart brings back the sleek tankini look (... remember the '90s?) with their Avery Tank ($68) which features a built-in bra and moisture-wicking fabric that dries off quickly after a dip. Though it's technically a workout tank, I can personally attest to its swim-friendliness after wearing it for a scuba lesson with Fiji’s Jean-Michel Cousteau Diving Center. Grateful for the extra coverage to prevent any subterranean cuts and scrapes, they dried off even faster than the borrowed neoprene gear.

These black swimsuits are like your LBD, but for the beach. And this sports bra with six pockets will change your life. 

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