How To Care for Your Swimsuit: Tips for Washing and Drying

How To Care for Your Swimsuit: Tips for Washing and Drying

Summer is upon us, and we can’t wait to live it up. How exciting to know the days are long, the weather warm, and the general mood optimistic. There’s so much to appreciate about the summer, and with it comes abundant water-related activities. With all the fun ahead, you’ll need some comfortable, durable, cute women’s swimsuits or plus-size swimwear to get you through the season.

There are many incredible summer water-related activities, with options ranging from the pool to the lake to the ocean to the sprinkler. These activities can take a toll on your one-piece swimsuit and two-piece swimsuit, whether it’s from the chlorine of the pool, the salt of the ocean, or hard water from the sprinkler. Many contaminants can negatively affect your swimwear, whether it’s sunscreen, salt, chlorine, heat, sand, or body oils. But as you will see, you can do many things to make this summer easier on your swimwear.

Rotate Suits

With so many beautiful suits, tankini swimsuits, swimsuits with shorts, slimming swimsuits, and much more, you’ll want to rotate through a few throughout the summer for aesthetic and photo purposes alone. But did you know rotating your suits can extend their lifespan?

Switching out suits can reduce the use and contamination of each swimsuit and give it a rest between uses, ensuring you can enjoy it for years.

Avoid Pilling

While enjoying your day by the water, there will likely be many environmental factors that could be rough on your swimsuit. We’re talking pool decks, barnacles, rough rocks, and wooden docks. When possible, try to sit on beach towels rather than abrasive surfaces to avoid pilling the swimsuit fabric. Synthetics are vulnerable to pilling, and shaving the pilling, while a good short-term solution, will eventually thin the fabric. The best way to avoid pilling is to prevent it from happening in the first place. That’s why keeping a beach towel or two with you throughout your time by the water to use as a buffer between your suit and environment will be necessary for the longevity of your swimwear.

Reduce Extreme Sun Exposure

Extreme heat and sun exposure will contribute to the degradation of the materials in your suit. When you reduce sun exposure, you keep your skin healthy and reduce sun damage while preserving your swimsuits.


While we may feel lazy after a long beach day and ready to throw our suits onto the laundry room floor, you’re not done with your day yet. It’s important to rinse your swimwear when you get home from the beach and pretreat stains with a gentle detergent. While you may think it won’t make a big difference to rinse now versus later, some factors can break down the fabric of your suit while it sits wet. Spandex, commonly found in swimsuits, is susceptible to heat, chlorine, salt, sunscreen, and body oils. The longer the suit gets exposed to these harsh factors, the more likely the swimsuit will lose its shape and elasticity.

Do your best to avoid storing your swimwear in plastic bags, as this can encourage mildew growth. Mildew will leave a smell in your suit that will be difficult to remove, so you don’t want to wear it anymore. Additionally, natural body odors will remain strong if you store the suit wet in plastic. Synthetic materials retain odors more than natural fabrics, so keep this in mind.

Wash With Gentle Detergent

To remove the contaminants that will wear out the material of your suit quickly, handwash your suits with lukewarm water and a gentle detergent as soon as possible. Handwashing, as opposed to machine washing, is vital, as the washer can be very harsh on delicate swimwear.

Dry Completely

When it comes to drying, you have a couple of options, though sadly, none involve the dryer. We recommend laying your suit on a towel on a flat non-absorbent surface or a drying wrack with a fan blowing. After washing, gently wring out excess water and then set out to dry.

In Summary

This advice will help you care for your suits effectively so that they will last a long time. Let us summarize these tips and tricks to remind you of the essentials of swimwear care quickly.

Here are some of the basic no-nos:

Don’t expose the suit to direct sunlight for extended periods.

Don’t expose the suit to abrasive surfaces.

Don’t wash in the washing machine.

Don’t dry with a dryer.

Don’t store when wet.

And here is the proper way to care for your suit:

Rinse immediately after the water exposure.

Pretreat stains with gentle detergent.

Handwash with mild detergent and lukewarm water.

Air dry completely.

Rotate suits.

Now that you know how to properly wash and care for the family swimwear, you’ll be excited to go shopping with the whole crew for new suits. A few tips and tricks will make your suits last for the whole summer and beyond.


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