The MH Style Counsel: tailored swim shorts
Some good news right off the bat: you don’t necessarily need a to look good in trunks. “I think it’s absolute rubbish when people say you have to have an incredible body to wear swim shorts,” says Brown. “Whether a guy is big or small, tall or short, if he buys a well cut suit it will flatter him. The same applies with well made swim shorts.” As a start, consider what type of waistband you want. A drawstring waist suits most and has some give. “A tailored waistband will fit more precisely, and looks smarter,” says Brown. The upshot of that is that you need to know your exact size, so try before you buy.
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Swim short length is as much a question of taste (both yours and the general public’s) as it is hard and fast rules, but Brown says that as a rule of thumb, “The taller you are, the longer your shorts should be.” He’s talking, of course, about proportion. Long shorts will draw the eye down the body and make you look shorter, short-shorts will have the opposite effect. We say, avoid going in at the deep end and aim for the sweet spot between the top of your knee and your mid-thigh instead.
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“Print and colour is definitely a reflection of your personality,” says Brown. Ergo, don’t go for that neon flamingo print if you’re not the life and soul of the (pool) party. The other thing you need to consider, says Brown, is colour. “I’m naturally quite fair so have to stick to navy, slate grey or a dark green. Look at your everyday wardrobe, find the dominant colour and look for similar in your trunks.” he says. In addition, if you want to do pattern and colour, something geometric, with a white accent colour, is a good way of dipping your toe in the water. The mix of colours will soften the effect of wearing a block colour and the pattern is neutral enough for all personalities to be able to pull off.
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Fun fact: hotel pools should have 14 milligrams of chlorine per litre of water. In unregulated villas and domestic pools, it’s often much higher. Prolonged exposure to chlorine, sun and sea salt will begin to take its toll on your swimmers. If you want them to last longer than a summer, show them some love. “Always try and rinse your shorts in clean water after you use them,” says Brown. “I’m terrible for not doing this but it will help keep them looking better for longer.” In addition, Brown also suggests washing them on nothing higher than 30 degrees and keeping them away from zinc heavy sunblocks, which can discolour them.
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If you’ve chosen well, chances are you’ll want to keep your trunks on post swim, meaning you’ll have to wear them with a top and shoes. “I think if you feel comfortable it shows, however you’re dressed. I don’t care whether you’re wearing a T-shirt, or a really smart linen shirt, it’s all about how you present yourself.” Says Brown. “ A classic way of dressing up trunks though is to use a white terry toweling polo shirt.” Footwear wise, Brown suggests avoiding lace ups.
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