The Latest in Swimwear Fashion: Recycled Plastics


What’s the latest trend in swimwear fashion? A bold, modern print … a sexy new cut … a novel interpretation of the tankini? Nope—it’s all about the fabric: swimsuits made with recycled plastics.

Plastics in swimsuits? That’s right: plastics. For decades, swimsuits have tended toward fabrics made with plastic fibers, such as nylon, polyester and spandex. Swimsuit designers have used these fabrics to create suits that fit snugly, dry quickly and stand up over time to multiple dips in the pool and ocean.

And today’s new recycling technologies help create swimsuit fabrics from recycled plastics.

How to Create Recycled Plastics for Swimwear

To enable the recycled swimsuit trends, used plastic beverage bottles are refined into soft but strong polyester thread that is then woven into fabric. While this recycling process has become common for wintry fleece, it’s also now used for a variety of garments. Or post-consumer nylon is refined into thread that is then combined with spandex for a softer feel and stretch.

The resulting soft, lightweight fabrics not only look great but also divert plastics from landfills, creating a new use for this valuable material. And because these plastic fabrics are durable, your swimsuit could last summer after summer.

Brands Embracing Recycled Plastics Swimwear Fashion

Beachwear manufacturers such as O’Neill, Eco Swim and Odina Surf have embraced recycled plastics as part of a larger trend toward more sustainable swimwear design. Swimwear made with recycled plastics is now available at mainstream retailers, so it has never been easier to find a stylish swimsuit that fits you—and your more sustainable lifestyle.

So whether you’re a surfer, a competitive swimmer, a beachgoer or simply a backyard sunbather, embrace this ecological swimwear fashion! Swimsuits made with recycled plastics can benefit both your wardrobe and the environment.