Unless you live by the beach or reside in a tropical place, you likely only wear a swimsuit a few times a year. Every season, this collection begs for a refresh of new styles, especially if the options you own suddenly feel outdated after months of not wearing them. For summer 2022, one theme you’ll want to tap into is the sultry swimsuit trend. Taking after the runways where you saw sensual ready-to-wear pieces dominate for both spring and fall ‘22, sexy bikinis and one-pieces will be abundant in the coming months
FWRD Vice President April Koza tells TZR that there are many ways to “achieve a sexy swimsuit look” for the season, if you know which styles to shop for. “We’re going to see a lot of wrap-around styles, bold geometric patterns, and revealing cutouts,” she says. “Brands like Jacquemus and Nanushka give us cool prints with a classic bikini shape, while Christopher Esber showcases dynamic silhouettes with interesting wrap-around and cutout styles. These trends are guaranteed to make a statement this season.”
Retailers like FWRD and brands like Isa Boulder are already offering these key styles ahead of summer 2022. Check out all the sultry bikini and one-pieces to shop, below, that can easily help you nail the sexy swimsuit trend.
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Hopefully you’re not sick of the cutout trend just yet as this design will bleed into swim attire for summer. “Cutout swimwear is like sculpture on the body. Every [way you] view [the piece] looks interesting. Cutouts are also a powerful expression of the human form and female pride in our bodies, [which] is evident in the fitness world where cutouts are found in catsuits, bodysuits, and tops” says designer Norma Kamali to TZR.
Gold chain links or rings can elevate and add an edge to your bikinis or one-pieces. “I think that this is such a subtly sexy addition to swimwear that will be very popular this season,” says Frankies Bikinis founder Francesca Aiello. “If you incorporate the correct hardware into the right pieces, it turns a swimsuit into a sexy statement piece.”
Backwards Triangle Top
Last summer, you might’ve noticed people taking a traditional triangle bikini top and wearing it sideways or backwards (where the bottom string is effectively in the center, as seen on Kendall Jenner.) You can expect this look to still dominate the swimwear world this summer.
“One of the sexiest trends we’re seeing in bikini tops is wearing a triangle top backwards, we used to wear ours like this all the time to achieve this look,” shares Gonza founders Victoria and Sofia Villarroel. “So we designed our bandeau bikini top to give that look, it’s definitely our sexiest top this year. It’s a new way to interpret a classic triangle top with a little edge and the perfect amount of cleavage ... Whether the top is tied around your neck or twisted around the body, this style will ensure a sexy, comfortable, and secure fit.”
The wrap-around swim style is not passé yet and is back for another season. “[This type of] top can be worn and tied many ways depending on your own sense of style,” says Same founder Shea Marie. Opt for a bikini top with a short string if you only want it to loop once around your waist, or for an extra body-binding look, wrap the strings around several times before knotting them in the back.
High-Leg, Thong Bottoms
If you dare, skip the full-coverage swimsuit bottom and go for a high-leg, cheeky bikini bottom/thong style. Fleur du Mal founder Jennifer Zuccarini tells TZR: “I remember when we launched swim in 2015, Barney’s thought our bottoms were way too cheeky when today, they actually seem pretty tame. The [swimsuit] trend has been moving towards thong bottoms with a high-cut leg ... It’s actually more flattering and makes your butt look better [versus] a full coverage [bottom].”
The sultry swimsuit trend doesn’t just have to be all cutouts and stringy styles, wearing vibrant colors can make you appear more confident and therefore channel an inner sexiness, too.
“Being confident in a bikini is something we all need to champion. There is no better way [to do so] than by wearing a swimsuit that is bright and bold,” says TRIANGL’s Creative Director Jaynee Wehbe. “Yes, a traditional black bikini is sexy, but this summer it is about being noticed for all the right reasons. Trending colors for [us] span the rainbow from emerald greens and sky blues to deep pinks and bright oranges. For those feeling extra bold, pair back your swim with a white or black shirt to further accentuate the color.”
Taking after the viral Miu Miu set, micro swim skirts are trending. “[They] are one of my favorite sexy swimwear trends of the season,” shares Aiello. “Inspiration for our Frankies Bikinis swim skirts came from taking the miniskirt trend that is huge in ready-to-wear and seamlessly blending it into our swimwear offerings. This brings such a fresh and innovative perspective into the swimwear world, and not only does it look sexy, but I think having something different and new always adds a bit of sexiness to anyone willing to take a risk.”
Corset-style one-pieces and balconette bikini tops will remain popular for the season. “Another sexy trend we’re seeing is the lingerie bra-inspired swimsuit ... We love seeing the sexiness of the early 2000s reappearing today...” says Villarroel. Kamali echoes this sentiment, telling TZR: “[Corset-inspired swim] tops are the same mindset as garter belts and naughty lingerie. It’s Victorian, strapped in, and prudish in a sense but also so sexy.”
Textured bikinis and one-pieces, whether made from sparkly fabric or sequins, will add that element of surprise in your poolside looks. “This summer, swimwear is focused on the all-around sensory experience of textured bikinis, whether through touch, such as terry toweling, velvet (both printed and plains), and raised prints,” says Whebe. “A textured bikini, like aesthetically pleasing fabrics such as lurex, sparkles when it catches the sun and that provides a new way to elevate your swim wardrobe.”