I fell in love with one piece swimsuits while working as a counselor at a summer camp in college. Every Friday we would put 40 kids on a yellow school bus and trek over to a state park for a full day of swimming, sunshine, and a summer cookout. While bikinis, tankinis, and low cut one pieces have their place at pool parties and sunning by the pool, they are just about the worst thing to wear while teaching six-year-olds how to swim. So every summer, I’d load up on discount athletic suits designed more for backstroke and butterfly than the doggy paddle. And every time a kid would inevitably grab my straps while trying to kick their way to the shallow end, I’d be grateful for the immovable, dependable support.
It’s been nearly a decade since I wore my camp counselor uniform, but every summer since I have religiously bought one very functional one piece. They are perfect for days at the beach where you actually want to get in the waves and enjoy the water (without constantly clutching at misplaces straps and bottoms), active hobbies like kayaking, and just throwing on when you don’t feel like looking at your own stomach. This year, I upgraded from my usual Swim Outlet purchase to Everlane’s Square-Neck one piece, which is both adorable and well-made, immovable and flattering.
For its debut swimwear line, Everlane followed its brilliant formula of well-made, eco-friendly basics to a tee, coming out with mix-and-match bikinis and one pieces in a variety of flattering, trendy colors. When I received my Marigold suit, I was first impressed by how vibrant the color is—a perfect, mustardy yellow that promises to pop against sun-kissed skin—then by the thickness and quality of the material. Where other swimsuits can feel, let’s say, a little exposed in their thinness, the Everlane one piece is substantial. It’s lined, includes a built-in shelf bra, and comes with removable bra padding that is just thick enough to keep things smooth without feeling like you’re toting two sponges around. For $65, I’m impressed by how substantial it feels: I suspect it will last more than one season, even with a lot of wear.
The cut is incredibly flattering: The square neck sits lower than a typical one piece, but is cut and sewn rigid enough that there’s no fear of slippage. Likewise, the low back adds a little flirtiness to this otherwise modest suit, without taking away from the stay-put security. I’ve found that the legs of this suit can be pulled high or shimmied down lower, depending on the kind of coverage you want (both on your legs and backside). And though I’ve worn it for a month already by the pool and in the sun, it looks just as vibrant as the day I took it out of the package.
More than anything, I love this swimsuit for its versatility. Unlike its athletic predecessors in my closet, Everlane’s suit feels fashionable and fun—but still gives me all the activity-ready coverage I expect out of a one piece. I find my self reaching for it over and over again, whether I’m hanging out with friends or having a low key pool day with my family. It’s the type of suit that makes you feel confident both in the way you look and in the performance. I have no doubt this would stand up to water slides, wave jumping, and even a casual game of beach volleyball. It’s so great, I have a sneaking suspicion that I might buy another one before summer’s end—once they restock the gorgeous, Baywatch-reminiscent red in my size.
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