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Dive into the future of fashion as we unveil the five best fabrics to make a splash in swimwear for 2023! With the sun-kissed season upon us, it’s time to upgrade your beach and poolside wardrobe with the latest and greatest swimwear materials. Whether you’re a beach babe or a poolside posh, these fabrics promise comfort, style, and cutting-edge performance.

From sustainable options to high-tech textiles, this year’s swimwear trends have got you covered, quite literally. So, get ready to ride the waves of style and sophistication as we reveal the fabrics set to make a big splash in swimwear this year.

Woman swimming in the ocean

Tricot fabric is a versatile choice for swimwear due to its unique zigzag weave, providing a textured surface on one side and a smooth finish on the other.

  • It is constructed using flatbed knitting machines, setting it apart from circular knitting machines, resulting in excellent wrinkle and run resistance.
  • Ideal for swimwear, especially when blended with materials like nylon or polyester spandex, as it offers breathability, a non-clinging fit, and the comfort of a 4-way stretch.
  • It is a warp-knit fabric characterized by continuous lengthwise loops columns, creating a distinctive interlocked zigzag pattern.
  • The fabric’s structure gives it a soft front surface and a textured back, combining softness with incredible durability.
  • Tricot fabric is known for being soft, flexible, and resistant to snags and runs, making it comfortable to wear without static buildup or clinging.
  • Available in a variety of colors and patterns, tricot fabrics offer both style and resilience, suitable for swimming activities.
Women on chair tanning.

Interlock fabric, a variation of rib knit construction, distinguishes itself from traditional knit fabrics. This unique knit offers built-in stretch and exceptional draping characteristics, making it a favored choice for swimwear that requires a comfortable fit.

  • Notably, the front and back of the interlock fabric are identical, creating the illusion of two layers seamlessly fused, hence its classification as a double-knit fabric.
  • It can be identified by the ‘V’-shaped rows or ribs on both sides, giving it a uniform appearance from front to back and a thicker texture than other knit fabrics.
  • Interlock fabric boasts the tightest knit, creating a smooth surface and a pleasing feel.
  • Its characteristics make it easy to work with and comfortable to wear, as it is exceptionally soft, firm, and absorbent, making it ideal for swimwear.
  • Interlock fabric offers ample stretch and excellent recovery, meaning it returns to its original shape after stretching.
  • Its sturdy construction also prevents runs and ensures that it won’t unravel or curl at the edges, adding to its durability and versatility.
swimwear fabric rolls stacked next to each other.

UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) is a numerical rating system that measures how effectively clothing blocks ultraviolet (UV) radiation, with a lower UPF indicating less protection.

  • For Example, a UPF rating of 25 means that only 1/25th (or 4%) of UV radiation can penetrate the fabric. To be labeled UPF, the fabric must undergo testing.
  • SPF (Sun Protection Factor) is used for sunscreen, focusing on its effectiveness against UVB rays, while UPF assesses protection against UVA and UVB light.
  • Higher UPF ratings signify better sun protection. For instance, UPF 15 allows around 6.7 percent of UV radiation to pass, while UPF 50+ permits less than 2 percent transmission.
  • Factors that enhance UPF ratings include tight construction, thicker fabrics, darker colors (which absorb more UV rays), fabric treatments and dyes, and specific fiber types like Polyester and Nylon, which excel at disrupting UV light.
Swimsuit styles in a retail shop

Nylon is a versatile synthetic fiber widely used in various products, including fabrics like swimwear. It is a polymer composed of repeating units bonded together, similar to a chain of links.

  • Nylon comes in different variations, with nylon 6,6 being the most common, but there are others like Kevlar and Nomex.
  • It is created by reacting two large molecules under high heat and pressure in an industrial kettle. The resulting nylon polymer is processed into chips, which serve as the raw material for numerous everyday products.
  • Nylon fabrics are made from nylon fibers, produced by melting chips and drawing them through a spinneret with tiny holes, creating different yarn thicknesses.
  • Nylon offers advantages such as excellent strength, abrasion resistance, elastic recovery, and resistance to sunlight.
  • It can stretch without losing shape, making it ideal for activewear like swimwear, jerseys, and leotards.
  • Nylon is cost-effective due to readily available ingredients, making it suitable for individuals and apparel businesses.
  • The fabrics come in various stretch options and are excellent at wicking moisture, keeping wearers comfortable during physical activities.
Women walking on the beach in swimwear

Polyester Spandex, often hailed as the dynamic duo of the textile world, has become a staple in modern fashion for its remarkable blend of performance, comfort, and style.

  • Polyester, a synthetic fiber, forms the robust backbone of this hybrid fabric. Renowned for its durability, wrinkle resistance, and moisture-wicking properties, polyester provides a sturdy foundation.
  • In contrast, Spandex, also known as elastane or Lycra, contributes the essential elasticity. Spandex fibers are incredibly stretchy, allowing unparalleled flexibility and a comfortable, body-hugging fit. This stretch factor elevates this fabric to the forefront of activewear, athleisure, and swimwear.
  • Itimparts a 4-way stretch to the fabric, stretching in all directions. Hence, great for swimwear requiring freedom of movement.
  • The inherent structure ensures that swimwear maintains its original shape, even after repeated washes and strenuous activities. Say goodbye to sagging and bagging.
  • The fabric retains its vibrant colors over time, even when exposed to sunlight and frequent washing. This makes it an ideal choice for swimwear and vibrant activewear.
  • Thanks to its durability, the swimwear made from Polyester Spandex are long-lasting and stand up to the demands of an active lifestyle.


Choosing the right swimwear fabric is crucial to ensure style, comfort, and performance. As we’ve explored the top fabric types, it’s clear that each fabric brings unique strengths to the poolside. From the durable and versatile Polyester Spandex to the sun-protective UPF fabrics, Tricot’s textured resilience, and Interlock’s stretchy adaptability, there’s a fabric to match every swimmer’s needs and preferences.

Whether you’re seeking sleek aesthetics, sun protection, or high-performance swimwear, these fabrics offer a wide range of options. So, dive into the world of swimwear confidently, knowing that you can make a splash in style and comfort thanks to these top-notch fabric choices.