1920s Swimsuits

1920s Mens Bathing Suits: Swimwear Trends for 1920s

The 1920s, also known as the Roaring Twenties, saw a lot of fashion and social norms change. During this transformational age of fashion, numerous changes were born as reflected in men’s swimwear.

Taking a different turn from the known traditional styles, 1920s fashion arrived with liberal and trendy bathing suits for men.

In this article, we will explore 1920s bathing suit trends. We will focus on popular men’s swimsuits and their significant changes.

5 Popular Mens Bathing Suits in 1920s1920s Mens Bathing Suits

Mens swimming suits have evolved significantly, adopting a more casual and trendy style to assure comfort. Here are five popular men’s 1920s swimsuits:

  1. One-Piece Knitted Swimsuits:The one-piece swimwear is made of wool and has a modest but, sporty style. It features a tank-style upper body, wide shoulder straps, and a scoop neckline. Bottoms are often high-waisted and stretched to the mid-thigh or knee. Hence, offering coverage and a tailored-fit look. Men who want comfort and style at the beach or pool tend to prefer one-piece knitted swimsuits.
  2. Tank Tops with Shorts: This 1920s bathing suit combines a tank top with separate shorts. Men would pair a sleeveless tank top made of knitted fabric possessing a ribbed texture, with loose-fitting shorts. The tank tops had a wide armhole and a scoop neck, allowing for flexibility. The shorts were typically knee-length or somewhat shorter, with a loose fit and an adjustable drawstring waist. As a result,  men looked more casual and comfortable while swimming or sunbathing.
  3. Belted Swim Trunks: These swim trunks were designed with a tight waist and a buttoned or buckled belt for added detail. Bottoms were often loose and extended to the mid-thigh or knee. Belted swim trunks were frequently made of cotton or wool, and the addition of the belt enhanced the waistline, giving men at the beach a sophisticated and elegant look.
  4. Beach Pajamas:Wide-leg trousers with a high waistband were often matched with a similar or contrasting top to form a one-piece ensemble. Beach pajamas were typically composed of lightweight fabrics such as silk or cotton with vivid stripes or vibrant designs. These loose, flowing clothing offered men a more relaxed, casual beachwear alternative. A perfect reflection of the carefree mood of the 1920s.
  5. Athletic-Inspired Swimwear: Men’s swimwear was impacted by the rise of sports and athleticism in the 1920s. Active people increasingly preferred athletic-inspired swim trunks. These swim trunks were lightweight, and quick-drying using fabrics like jersey or silk. They had a sleek style with a tight waist and a shorter length for ease of mobility. Athletic-inspired swimwear had a sporty and energetic look that appealed to males who participated in water sports or other strenuous activities.

What were the Swimwear Trends in 1920s? 1920s Mens Bathing Suits

The swimsuit styles of the 1920s reflected a transition toward more exposed and streamlined designs. The motivation is seen by shifting societal attitudes and a desire for freedom and modernism.

These are some of the trends that influenced 1920s bathing suits:

  • Shorter Hemlines:The shift to shorter hemlines was one of the most noticeable trends of the 1920s. This trend can be found in both men’s and women’s swimwear. Swimwear used to cover the full body, but in the 1920s, men’s swim trunks and women’s swimsuits became more exposed, with shorter lengths, often reaching above the knee.
  • Knitted Fabrics: Knitted swimsuits provided a pleasant, stretchy fit. It also provided insulation, allowing it to be used in cooler seas.
  • Sporty and Athletic: Swimwear for both men and women featured motifs inspired by athletic clothing. Adjustable waistbands, shorter lengths, and designs that allowed for freedom of movement were all incorporated. The sports influence gave the swimsuits of the time a vibrant and energetic feel.
  • Art Deco and Geometric Patterns: The Art Deco movement, known for its geometric shapes and bright patterns, significantly impacted the 1920s bathing suit Men’s and women’s swimwear featured eye-catching geometric prints, stripes, and abstract patterns. These elaborate and visually appealing patterns reflected the era’s artistic and elegant spirit.
  • Sun Protection: While swimsuits got more exposed in the 1920s, sun protection remained a priority. Many swimsuit designs included higher necklines and shoulder and upper arm coverage. This was especially essential in the early half of the decade when fashion still incorporated features from the previous Edwardian era.

What were Bathing Suits called in 1920s?

Bathing suits were usually referred to as “swimsuits” or “bathing costumes”. These terms were used at the time to emphasize the more modest and covered-up nature of swimwear.

The 1920s marked a new era in men’s swimwear. From one-piece knitted swimsuits to tank tops with separate shorts, belted swim trunks, striped beach sleepers, and athletic-inspired swimwear. Men had a wide range of stylish options to pick from. The 1920s bathing suit reflected changing social conventions and a desire for more liberated and fashionable beach clothing.

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