TripSavvy Trip Planning The 11 Best Swimsuit Cover-Ups of 2021 Frequent travelers share their top picks for style and versatility By Alesandra Dubin Alesandra Dubin Instagram Twitter Alesandra Dubin is an LA-based lifestyle writer and editor specializing in travel, food, parenting, and more. As a veteran digital journalist, she’s covered lifestyle content for over 15 years. TripSavvy's editorial guidelines Published on 04/03/20 Share Pin Email Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. The Rundown Best Overall: Nativa Sleeveless Puebla Mini Dress at madewell.com "These are equally easy to wear as a swimsuit cover-up and as a dress." Best Budget: Back From Bali Sarong at Amazon "You can wear this affordable pick as a cover-up, sit on it at the beach, or even dry off with it." Best Splurge: Julia Clancey Lady Joy Set at wolfandbadger.com "This comfy caftan in a vibrant rainbow print is festival-ready and photo-ready and totally worth the splurge." Best Jumpsuit: TERRY Il Pareo Jumpsuit at revolve.com "This versatile pick can be layered with a denim jacket and or worn with sneakers or sandals for a comfortable travel day outfit." Best Maxi Dress: Asa Kaftans JUNGLE Drawstring at asasoltan.com "This maxi dress comes in one size that fits small to XL." Best Tunic: SwimZip Half Zip Swim Dress Cover Up at swimzip.com "This chic tunic has UPF 50+ protection and is super comfortable and flattering." Best Sarong: MIKOH Toyama Sarong at shopbop.com "This lightweight maxi-length sarong has a low-key elegance, perfect for dressing up or down." Best Hooded: La Blanca Slouchy Hooded Sweater Cover-Up Tunic at nordstrom.com "This pick is ideal for breezy conditions when you slide some jeans over your swimsuit as day turns to evening." Best Button-Down: J. Crew Button-Up Beach Cover-Up at jcrew.com " The button styling makes it feel pulled together—and even professional for a business trip." Best Night Time: Journelle Polka Dot Kimono Robe at elselingerie.com "Made from 100 percent silk, this kimono robe is ideal for covering up after a night swim, beach stroll, or romantic hot tub dip." Flip-flops: check. Sunnies: check. Swimsuit: check. And don’t forget a great cover-up (or two) among your packing essentials for a beach trip! Swimsuit cover-ups come in a huge range of styles and silhouettes to suit every occasion and flatter every body type. Think tunics, maxi dresses, jumpsuits, kaftans, rompers, and wide-leg pants. From breezy casual to downright dressy, these options take you from the beach to dinner in flawless style. Our ultimate shopping guide includes feedback from a wide range of stylish bloggers and frequent travelers to help you find the best option for you. Here, the best swimsuit cover-ups for your next beach getaway. Best Overall: Nativa Mexican Embroidered Puebla Mini Dress - Sleeveless Courtesy of Madewell Buy on Madewell.com What We Like Hand embroidered Lightweight Can be used as streetwear Machine-washable What We Don't Like Air dry only This peasant dress is equally easy to wear as a swimsuit cover-up and as a dress. They are lightweight for comfort under the sun and have a cheerful look that always gets noticed. This fair-trade, cotton version is made by artisans in Mexico. Best Budget: Back From Bali Sarong Swimsuit Bikini Cover Up Wrap And Clip Peacock Best Seller Pareo Buy on Amazon What We Like Versatile Comes in various colors Machine-washable What We Don't Like Reviewers note sometimes fabric comes flawed A sarong is one of the most versatile packing essentials ever. You can wear it as a cover-up, sit on it at the beach, or even dry off with it. "It doesn't get much better than a sarong for a beach cover-up," says Cierra Loflin, digital nomad and chief marketing officer at Zodiac Guides, who recommends this budget-friendly, generously sized option that comes in a full 20 colors and prints. "I love to use them as a dress, skirt, or even a beach blanket." Best Splurge: Julia Clancey Lady Joy Set Courtesy of Julia Clancey Buy on Wolfandbadger.com What We Like One size fits all Machine-washable Made from upcycled fabrics What We Don't Like Only comes in one color/pattern option Julia Clancey’s posh caftans won’t fit into every budget—but they’re the creme de la creme and a worthy splurge if you can swing it. This comfy caftan in a vibrant rainbow print is festival-ready, photo-ready—and guaranteed to get noticed. Plus, it comes with a matching turban! Best Jumpsuit: TERRY Il Pareo Jumpsuit Courtesy of Revolve Buy on Revolve.com What We Like Versatile Machine-washable Has pockets What We Don't Like Expensive “What I love about this style is that it is super versatile,” says travel and lifestyle blogger Alicia Tenise. “I wear it as a cover-up when I'm at the beach or pool, and I also love to layer a denim jacket over it and wear it with sneakers or sandals for a comfortable travel day outfit." The 13 Best Women's Sandals of 2021 Best Maxi Dress: Asa Kaftans JUNGLE Drawstring Courtesy of Asa Kaftans Buy on Asasoltan.com What We Like Comes in various colors and styles One size fits all Machine-washable What We Don't Like Air dry only It would not be an overstatement to say we're obsessed with Venice-based Asa Kaftans. Their styles range from short and sassy to long and wow-worthy. This tiger-print piece is guaranteed to get compliments at the beach or resort every single time, and one size fits small to XL. Best Tunic: SwimZip Women's Half Zip Swim Dress Cover Up Courtesy of Swim Zip Buy on Swimzip.com What We Like Affordable Has UPF protection Comes in various colors What We Don't Like Not recommended if looking for looser fit Trae Bodge, a smart shopping expert at Truetrae.com who regularly travels for work and leisure, calls this wardrobe staple her "favorite" cover-up. "It's UPF 50+, super comfortable, and flattering—all priorities for me in a cover-up," she says. "I bring mine with me on any trip where there will be water and have done so for years now. They are available in several colors, including solids and pretty patterns. They are the perfect length for the pool or a beachside cafe and also great for paddle-boarding in!" Best Sarong: MIKOH Toyama Sarong Wrap Courtesy of Shopbop Buy on Shopbop.com What We Like Lightweight Versatile Machine-washable What We Don't Like Air dry only This lightweight maxi-length sarong in basic black or white has a low-key elegance, perfect for dressing up or down. The non-stretch gauze piece is 100 percent cotton with raw edges. Best Hooded: La Blanca Slouchy Hooded Sweater Cover-Up Tunic Courtesy of Nordstrom Buy on Nordstrom What We Like Comes in various colors Affordable Can be used as streetwear What We Don't Like Not machine-washable Think of this cool cover-up as a hoodie for the beach. The black-and-white-striped knitted pullover has a drawstring hood attached—ideal for breezy conditions when you slide some jeans over your swimsuit as day turns to evening. The 11 Best Women’s Travel Pants of 2021 Best Button-Down: J. Crew Button-Up Beach Cover-Up in Linen-Cotton Courtesy of J. Crew Buy on Jcrew.com What We Like Comes in various colors Great for work trips Machine-washable What We Don't Like Slightly sheer This linen-cotton button-down style cover-up is a favorite among reviewers. It’s slightly sheer, so it shows a little skin and bikini top underneath. But the button styling makes it feel pulled together—and even professional for a business trip. It comes in 10 patterns and solids. The 12 Best Swimsuit Brands of 2021 Best Night Time: Journelle Polka Dot Kimono Robe Courtesy of Journelle Buy on Elselingerie.com What We Like 100 percent silk Easy to put on What We Don't Like Expensive Honeymooner? This kimono robe is ideal for covering up after a night swim, beach stroll, or romantic hot tub dip. The waist-tie open-front robe is 100 percent silk, which gives it a luxurious feel (and splurge-worthy price point). The all-over polka-dot print takes it from elegant to playful. Best for the Beach: Tina Turk Sunrise Stripe Caftan Courtesy of Trina Turk Buy on EBay What We Like One size fits all Versatile Lightweight What We Don't Like Not machine-washable Trina Turk’s whole vibe is the essence of vacation: the bright colors, the lively patterns, the Palm Springs aesthetic. This oversized caftan-style cover-up features a neckline you can wear three different ways: V-neck style, boatneck, or off the shoulders. Final Verdict Our top pick is the Nativa Mexican Embroidered Puebla Mini Dress (view at Madewell) for its simple but colorful design and lightweight feel. It's perfect for lounging by the waves or wearing every day. However, if you want a more statement-making piece, you can't go wrong with Asa Kaftans JUNGLE Drawstring (view at Asasoltan). It's comfortable and even value-priced considering the enormously wow-worthy look. What to Look for in a Swimsuit Cover-Up Material While some luxury cover-ups are delicate and require careful handwashing (think silk), most shoppers look for a cover-up made from material that is durable, breathable, fast-drying, and lightweight—such as polyester or cotton. "When I look for swimsuit cover-ups, I try to find items in breathable fabrics that are versatile," Tenise says. "I usually don't opt for anything too sheer so that I can wear the same cover-up on travel days or if I'm running errands around town." Fit Many cover-ups are made in loose-fitting styles, such as kaftans and flowing dresses—and that appeals for comfort and breathability. Some styles (such as Asa Kaftan) even offer one-size-fits-all pieces that are easy to buy online and share with friends. But consider a more form-fitted silhouette if you’re going for a dressier look or more body-conscious style. Packability If you’re traveling to a beach or resort destination, choose a cover-up that’s lightweight, wrinkle-resistant, and easily compressible within your luggage. "Having multipurpose items is ideal while traveling to save space in your luggage," says Loflin. "Sarongs fold up small and barely take up any room but have so many uses!" FAQs What’s the best cover-up when traveling? When considering swimsuit cover-ups for travel, look for something lightweight and versatile. A sarong easily earns its real estate in a suitcase: It’s lightweight and can also be used as a head wrap, beach blanket, and skirt. A maxi dress in a solid shade is also great for dressing up for dinner. What are the best ways to wear a sarong as a cover-up? There are tons of ways to wear a sarong as a cover-up. Tie it around your waist like a skirt. Twist it into halter straps for a dress. Tie and tuck under the bust for a strapless look. However you wear it, "I recommend finding a color and pattern that matches your eyes and skin color, so you look truly radiant," Loflin says. Can I wear a swimsuit cover-up as street clothes? Absolutely, travel influencers say. And choosing a cover-up that doubles as street wardrobe is a great way to save space while packing and travel light. “When looking for cover-ups, I always shop for pieces that can double as streetwear to help reduce space in my suitcase,” says Whimsy Soul’s Harms. Why Trust TripSavvy Alesandra Dubin is a frequent traveler to beaches, pools, and resort environments. As a travel and lifestyle writer for work and leisure, she's experimented with many cover-up styles and silhouettes for occasions from ultra-casual to even work-appropriate. The 13 Best Beach Bags of 2021 Was this page helpful? Thanks for letting us know! Share Pin Email Tell us why! Submit Continue to 5 of 11 below. Continue to 9 of 11 below.