The Bailey Daily

๐Ÿ’™ Be Beachy: The Best Swimsuit Cover-Up & How to Style Them

Earlier this week I wrote about how to pack for a tropical vacation, followed by trending swimwear for 2021. Yet, quite frankly, what you wear over your swimsuit is equally, if not more important than your swimwear! So here we are. Cover-ups are an essential part of your vacation wardrobe. Often, it is the main garment that I wear while Iโ€™m on vacation throughout the majority of the day. Itโ€™s quick-drying, lightweight, fashionable, and also provides sun protection. They are great to just throw on after the pool or beach to go grab lunch or walk down to the shops. Therefore, itโ€™s an essential piece to bring with you when going on a beach vacation. So, letโ€™s discuss all the best swimsuit cover-ups and how to style them.


Tunics are probably the most common and practical out of all the styles of swimsuit cover-ups. They are generally knee-length or shorter with short sleeves and come in a variety of lightweight materials. The good thing about these styles is they are great to throw in a beach bag because they donโ€™t wrinkle very easily. There are so many fun styles to choose from too. I would suggest a neutral in a fun texture like a woven or crochet. That way you can mix and match with your swimsuits. Pair with pool slides/sandals, Aviators, a fedora, and a casual canvas beach bag.


Caftans are a bit more extravagant as they are a long/maxi version of a cover-up. I think of caftans as being a bit more upscale than all the other cover-ups. Some of my favorite styles are high neck linen with your more neutral suits. Or, if you want to take it up a notch, try a colorful, bold, tribal print caftan and pair it with an animal print suit. Accessorize with gold jewelry, a floppy hat, oversized sunglasses, black leather sandals, and a black beach tote for a totally glam moment.


button-down is an item most of us have in our closets, and honestly, I think they are also so chic as a swimsuit cover-up. My grandma, Baba, has always worn one, and she is the head fashionista, so thatโ€™s how you know itโ€™s a style. Hers was always a crisp white Ralph Lauren with the logo or some version of a blue or black and white stripe. Therefore, those would be my recommendations too. The classics will always look chic and timeless. Pair with white or brown leather sandals, a baseball cap, Ray-Bans, and a straw shoulder beach bag.


I love a good sarong too. These, I tend to buy while Iโ€™m on vacation from a beach vendor or somewhere in town. I love all the selection of bright colors and unique prints which also gives me something to shop for while on vacation. So, find yourself a boldly patterned sarong that you can wear to brighten up that classic black swimsuit. You can wear sarongs in two different ways too โ€“ tied around your waist as a skirt or tied around your neck as a dress. Vibrant print sarongs would pair well with lace-up/strappy sandals, cat-eye-colored sunglasses, and a round straw leather cross-body bag.


I think flowy beach pants are going to be a hot item for spring/summer. I already purchased a leopard print pair that I canโ€™t wait to wear as soon as weโ€™re able to travel again. They are so cute styled over a one-piece or with a two-piece bathing suit top as the pants are high-waisted. So, it creates a cute little outfit. Otherwise, you could also wear these pants with a cute crop top or T-shirt and some fun gold accessories if you were going out to dinner on vacation too. Another option is some pants come in sets with matching tops which is also awesome. Pair your pants with either of the tops listed above, strappy sandals with fun details, a woven raffia tote, and tortoiseshell shades.


Sundresses and maxi dresses are both great feminine styles to wear over your swimsuit and they are very versatile too. Theyโ€™re universally flattering on everyone and this is another item that most everyone has in their closet and could substitute it for a cover-up. Dresses will take you from the pool to the lobby bar in no time all while looking fabulous too. Pair your dresses with flip-flops, a backpack, round sunglasses.


Kimonos also make amazing swimsuit cover-ups because they are made out of lightweight, chiffon, satin, or silk material and come in many beautiful prints and styles. You can also find them in long or short versions depending on what youโ€™re looking for. Kimonos are elegant and allow you to leave them tied or untied. So itโ€™s like a long, stylish overcoat or robe. Choose one in a beautiful print that you can pair over a neutral bathing suit or vice versa. Wear a pair of flat thong brown sandals, jean shorts, beaded jewelry, gold-rimmed sunglasses, and a hobo cord slouchy bag. Or, it can be worn simply by itself over a swimsuit.

This post was written in partnership with Zulily. For more Life & Style posts click here.





Bailey Stuvland is a California girl who loves talking about all things fashion. With more than ten years of styling experience for personal clients and with brands like Stitch Fix, she enjoys helping others find what they love to wear. Her mission is to help people not only look good on the outside, but feel good on the inside by having fun with outfits, accessories and beauty. You can find her blog at The Bailey Dailies.

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