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How to Style A Swim Shirt or Rash Guard

For today’s Moms Do Spring Style look, I wanted to share how to style a swim shirt or rash guard. I was a little reluctant to embrace them myself. As a true Florida girl, who misses year round sun, I just love soaking up those rays! The hotter the better! Unfortunately, my fair and freckled skin screams another story and doing my best to prevent sun damage and potential skin cancer is a bigger priority. So now I’m all about my swim shirts, especially for days like this one where I was on a boat in Mexico all morning and the sun was really going to be beaming down on my check, arms and shoulders. Those areas in particular on me are especially sensitive.

How to Style a Swim Shirt

The swim shirt I’m wearing here is from Land’s End. I love that it is black and white and can easily be thrown over a bathing suit. However, I felt like while doing a great job of protecting me, it needed to be a little more form fitting to feel cute. Especially for a day out on a boat. The easy solution was to simply knot it at the waist and wear it with black shorts. A coordinating baseball cap also protected my face and tied the look together. This simple change made my look go from frumpy to unfussy chic and I had a great time on the water. It really does’t get much easier than a baseball hat outfit. That’s my easy go-to way to style a swim shirt.

And please know that I love unfussy anything when having a beachy water vacation. There was a girl nearby with huge chandelier earrings and crazy tall shoes. Boy did she look fabulous, but also a little miserable. No way was she jumping in which meant she missed all the fun! Casual chic for the win!

Style a Swim Shirt to Look Cute

Of course, there are several options for sun protection including more close fitting rash guards that have the support of a bathing suit top (meaning no bikini top needed underneath). Personally, I like the versatility of the swim shirt to go from sitting on the boat in what looks like an outfit, to hopping in the water to cool off. But as I start to get more and more back into water sports (I’m planning on trying some SUP yoga soon!) I think a proper rash guard might be worth getting as well.

Here are 5 options to protect your from the sun as you enjoy your spring break, Easter vacation or head on into summer.

Swim Shirt Collage

Moms Do Spring Style

For today’s Moms Do Spring Style collab, head over to Very Busy Mama to check out how Maria styled her fab olive hooded jacket. Watch out though, her hair is so cute it will make you want bangs! Also, make sure to enter our $150 Nordstrom Gift Card giveaway if you haven’t already!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.


  1. Alecia says

    As the daughter of a redhead (I got the skin but not the hair 🙁 ) I need as much sun protection as I can get. I was always made to wear a long sleeved shirt in the pool when I was a kid in the 90’s. I’m so glad we have better options now!

  2. Stephanie Jeannot says

    I love the black shirt with the colorful sleeves. That is too cute. I need to get on a boat and spend a day there fishing. That sounds like a really nice day and something I have yet to do.

  3. Rebecca Bryant says

    That is a cute pairing. Very stylish and ready for summer. My teen niece would totally love this look and would wear it.

  4. Melanie says

    I had no idea it could actually look stylish to wear one. I am so inspired! Might actually go to the beach this year!

  5. Cynthia says

    I like the way you knotted the striped top! It makes is seem a little different than the ordinary. My daughter will be heading to Greece soon and she is on the lookout for things that will keep her from burning. I will have to share your ideas.

  6. Emily says

    These are all so cute! I always make my kids wear a swimsuit with a rash guard shirt, I have some very pale kids who burn so quickly. I want to protect them. Because of my kids I have started wearing one even though I am naturally olive skin toned and do not sunburn. It is still important to protect my skin.

  7. Monica (NYCTechMommy) says

    Love this! We are getting ready for Spring Break over here. Casual chic for the win – for sure! I love those swim top options. I think I need to get one right away! I think the flowered sleeve rashguard is the one I need. 🙂

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