Many Fashionable Swimwear ’24

What would you rather have under your waist? Something resembling a spikey scorpionfish? An elephant? A parrot’s head? Rooster? Large coconuts? Or crabs? 

How about Smiley faces?… Or water-reactive, regenerated polyamide turtles and piranhas; or an Eiffel tow surrounded by a pair of octopus?

Such are the below-the-waist options offered by Vilebrequin. They are a stylish and very upscale option for pouches and Japanese fundoshi loincloths.

We all reach the time when double-bonded bottoms and sophisticated drainage systems become priorities when it comes to swimwear. When, more than ever, self-draining and quick drying become paramount needs from swimming trunks.

Picking your wardrobe of age-appropriate swimwear is a taxing and delicate art. There is a thin line between G-strings and exhibitionism. Some sights are more arresting than others.

Some men are so hairy that they look like they are wearing knee-length shorts made from discarded coconut husks. When they’re not. And no one can be sure if they are sporting a jungle print or something less synthetic. Just as some men don’t aspire to be mistaken for triathletes, some don’t suit bathing caps. No matter how hard they try, many men can’t ever look like a yacht-loller. 

Male swimming trunks are so hard to pull off.

When it comes to “resort wear”, many men disdain vivid florals. They remind them too much of the curtains of a nursing home. Iridescent, funky, and “out there” are for the young and young fathers. So there is no association with elderly care facilities. Some don’t care and go psychedelic. Each to their own body shape and body image. The choice is XXL. Whether you use the word “trunks” or have graduated to “swim shorts”.

From cups and jammers to baggy square cuts, board shorts, and Bermudas. From hydro-dynamic, deliberately restrictive, eye-watering tight hardly there’s, drawstring Nike volleys and Patagonia baggies through  more staid but still thigh-flattering Adidas to the boring but roomy and reliable regular length Burgundy Made in Bangkok Warm Machine Wash

Whatever the budget, the ideal male swimwear should provide emotional as well as structural support and disguise genital definition. Maximum functionality and modern design sensibility should meet minimal abrasion and low-incidence chafing. 

If I had to give any man over 40 some advice when buying swimwear it would be: “Leave room for the legs”. And: “Be aware of your bagginess.”

The rule of thumb is “Midlife means mid-thigh”, “Past fifty means past the knee” and  “Conservative cut means past it”.    

Beware of false economy. There is nothing like feeling luxury around your hips. 

Vilebrequin, which has just released its summer ’24 collection, is still for all ages and body shapes. It is multi-generational luxury resortwear that comes not only, if you want, with belts but a lifetime guarantee.  Of minimum humiliation and optional style. The brand also has an interesting back story.

Fred Prysquel was a motor journalist who was inspired by Californian surf culture and the boubou wax fabric of Senegal, where he served in the French Army, to design longer-than-usual boxer-style trunks named after the French word for “crankshaft”.

Everyone likes to be seen in a crankshaft. Your loins instantly become a status symbol. The colorful, playful flagship Moorea design honours St Tropez Beach where Vilebrequin began in 1971. The patterns were designed by Fred’s wife, Yvette. Fred is color blind. They came out with the Father and Son range, producing heirloom quality swimwear. Limited edition garments can cost up to £450.

Geneva-based Vilebrequin, which has stores in Paris, Beverly Hills, Las Vegas, Milan, Monte Carlo, Seoul, New York, and Washington DC,  launched a ladies’ range in 2013 and has now moved into loungewear.  

In piqué, cotton voile, classic linen, and in colors like cardamom. Hawaii Blu, Breton Blu, and lemongrass, the Vilebrequin offers everything to enhance or de-emphasize your body parts.

From low-impact material bikinis and trikinis, one-piece and two-pieces, bandeau, asymmetrical swimsuits, cover-ups, knottable pareos, ponchos, scarves, tangas, jumpsuits, cover-ups and long-sleeved rashguard Rayures, Vilebrequin has turned itself into a lifestyle brand for all genders.

But one thing unites all and confers equal social cachet on everybody. A Santah turtle jacquard Vilebrequin beach towel. 

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