The best gender-inclusive swimsuit
For those who want a more androgynous swim silhouette, OutPlay offers tons of gender-neutral options from rashguards to swim trunks to full coverage swim tops.
Finding the right swimwear can be a daunting and frustrating endeavor for those who want to eschew highly feminine styles. I’m a queer person who presents androgynously and typically wears menswear, so swimsuits — especially tops — have been quite tricky for me. For a long time, going to the beach or pool was a stressful experience because I never had a bathing suit that made me feel comfortable in my own skin. Then I found OutPlay.
OutPlay offers gender-neutral swimsuits for women, non-binary people, and trans folks who are looking for simple, gender-inclusive swimwear. I bought my first OutPlay top — the Swimmee ($49) — back in 2016, and I’ve worn it every single time I’ve gone to the pool or beach in the last three years. It’s held up marvelously, even after multiple summers of saltwater, chlorine, and putting it in the dryer (even though you’re really not supposed to). It’s still my go-to bathing suit top, and honestly, it’s the only one I ever wear.
The Swimmee is a sports-bra-style top, but if you’re looking for something with even more coverage, they also offer swim tanks ($59) and rashguards ($58.95). Most of the tops come in both low-compression and high-compression, giving an option to bind your chest flat or minimize its appearance. The low-compression option still offers a ton of support — about as much as a standard sports bra — but the high-compression option takes it to the next level.
All of the tops come in several solid colors and stripes, so they pair well with a wide variety of bottoms. I often pair my Swimmee with whatever fun swim trunks I happen to find that season. They also offer several choices of their own, and everything comes in similar color schemes, maximizing your ability to mix and match. The Tomboier ($30), which fits like a pair of boxer briefs, is OutPlay’s signature style, but my go-to are the boardshorts ($52), since I prefer to keep it loose and breezy.
While OutPlay does tend to be on the pricier end, the durability has dropped my cost-per-wear down to virtually nothing. It’s some of the most reliable swimwear I’ve ever owned, to say nothing of the fact that this is the first swimsuit that has ever made me feel comfortable and confident. With OutPlay, I can bring my style to the beach without compromise, and that’s absolutely priceless. — Jen Gushue
Pros: Durable and long-lasting androgynous swim styles for those looking for a simple, gender-neutral silhouette
Cons: A bit on the pricier side, and they don’t offer many variations on style. If you’re looking for something with more flair, this brand isn’t for you.