Things are hotting up down here in the South of France and it’s got me thinking about investing in some new swimwear. Although we’re currently in the midst of a countrywide lockdown, I’m still holding out for some summer sun – whatever shape or form that may come in.

We live in an apartment that doesn’t have a garden or pool but I’m hoping soon that will change(!). However, there is a fab outdoor lido-come-pool that opens for the summer in the centre of town and we love exploring nearby lakes and rivers for wild swimming. If we want to venture a little further, we can get to the med in 1.5 hours but it’s a far cry from having the sea at our feet when we lived on the Isle of Wight!

My swimwear collection is very…limited. I haven’t bought a new swimsuit or bikini in about 4/5 years, no lie! I’ve got a one shoulder LBS (little black swimsuit) that I bought from H&M years ago and it has been my go-to since. Black and minimal never goes out of fashion. I also have a Topshop black bikini but it’s starting to lose its shape a little. And that’s about it, pretty boring I know!

The majority of our swimwear is made from synthetic fabrics like nylon and polyester to be able to withstand the sun, sea and elements. Sadly, this means when we’re finished with it, it ends up in landfill and takes years and years to breakdown like all other plastics. Not good for the planet.

That being said, there are some brands like Stay Wild Swim, Tide & Seek & Batoko,  who are using recycled plastic to create swimwear lines, and although this doesn’t completely solve the problem, it goes some way to reducing the amount of new plastic that’s being made.

Image: Stay Wild Swim

I also did some digging and found a French brand called Luz who make some beautiful swimwear using organic cotton. I would be interested to know how it performs in water…

The brand YOUSWIM has also caught my eye after their ‘one size fits all’ swimwear line blew up on my Instagram feed. Not only does their capsule collection look flattering on all shapes and sizes, it’s manufactured in England ensuring that worker’s rights and production practices are maintained.

Image: YOUSWIM

I’m aware that a lot of these options come with a hefty price tag, and it’s something that might be off-putting to some (myself included). My rationale is that I haven’t spent out on swimwear over 5 years, and I don’t plan to for another 5 at least, so if I invest in something that I will love and will last, it’s better than buying a £20 swimsuit every year. You see?

If you really don’t have that kind of money to spend, a lot of high-street brands are starting to create their own swimwear lines out of recycled plastic, for example the H&M Conscious Collection and Monki.

What are your favourite sustainable swimwear brands?