Navigating women's swimwear challenges is tough, especially with the ongoing board shorts vs. swim shorts debate. Understanding the crucial differences between the two is key to knowing what you want or need to wear. Align your choice with your beach day activities, considering the unique pros and cons of each type.
Our guide simplifies the shopping experience, addressing boardshorts and swim shorts for women. No longer limited to standalone swimsuits, women can now layer with board shorts (just not called swim trunks).
Whether you're surfing, supervising kids, or lounging on a beach chair, our guide helps you find the perfect bottoms, eliminating swimsuit wedgies and ensuring you make a stylish splash, be it in saltwater, river water, lake water, or pool water.
What are board shorts used for? What are swim shorts?
While each may look and function almost the same, there are slight differences.
Boardshorts serve as an overlayer, complementing a one-piece swimsuit, bikini bottom, or women's swim trunk. Tailored with size-specific cuts, they offer short inseams for unrestricted movement and long inseams for protection against board rash. Whether you prefer a breezy feel or extra coverage, boardshorts are the perfect style for those who adore surfing and the shores.
Boardshorts offer great coverage during summer and warm weather, making them ideal for tropical climates, beach vacations, or even backyard staycations. Featuring four-way stretch, quick-dry materials, and UPF 50 coverage, board shorts are versatile for activities both in and around the water. Whether you're water skiing, swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding, lifeguarding, or simply enjoying a margarita, boardshorts of all kinds serve various purposes beyond just surfing.
Swim shorts function as an independent swimsuit bottom, resembling boardshorts more than a typical bikini brief. Despite the boardshort-like appearance, they serve the same purpose. Similar to traditional running shorts, swim shorts come with a built-in brief, eliminating the need for additional swimsuit bottoms as the coverage under the inseam is already integrated.
How do I choose which to wear?
Choosing between board shorts and swim shorts is all about your preference and the water activity you have in mind. Both types are versatile and suitable for various activities like swimming, surfing, walking, and running. Whether you're comfortable going commando under swim shorts or prefer layering with board shorts, your choice of gear can significantly impact your experience.
Regarding coverage, there are options to consider. Board shorts, usually longer, come in lengths ranging from mid-thigh to knee-length.
Swim shorts usually have a shorter length, like running shorts, providing the coverage and a slip-proof waistband you desire.
What do board shorts and swim shorts offer?
Women's board shorts and swim shorts come with a multitude of features catering to a variety of water-loving women, such as:
We prioritize comfort in our choices, and luckily, Baleaf's swim and board shorts are designed to provide lasting comfort throughout the day.
Featuring an elastic waistband, loose-fitting design, and a free-flowing feel around the legs, there's no chance of chafing. Women have a plethora of comfortable trunk options to choose from.
They provide great coverage.
Ditch the tiny bikini bottoms and opt for coverage where it matters. Whether you prefer them slightly shorter, mid-thigh, or knee-length, we offer a range of coverage options that stay in place for your activities.
They are multifunctional.
Regardless of your choice, you're sure to have a pair that can handle a variety of activities.
Featuring quick-drying materials, a comfortable waistband, and effortless pull-on styling, swim and board shorts are incredibly versatile. Whether you're heading to the pool, the beach, or engaging in activities like surfing, paddle boarding, or cliff diving, these shorts have you covered. And when the day winds down, you can seamlessly transition to post-surf snacking without the need for an outfit change.
They are durable.
Baleaf's collection of swim and board shorts is crafted from strong, high-performance fabrics that resist wear and maintain their shape. Nylon, spandex, and elastane are among the powerhouse materials that contribute to the durability of our swimwear, swim shorts, and board shorts.
The Best Board Shorts for Women
If you're looking for a pair of the best women's board shorts, then look no further. Here are some of the top-of-the-line Baleaf board shorts for a secure and enjoyable water adventure:
Laureate UPF 50+ High Rise Board Shorts
The Laureate UPF 50+ High Rise Board Shorts, made from 95% polyester and 5% Spandex, offer superior sun protection, chlorine resistance, and quick-drying breathability.
With a high-rise style, elastic wide waistband accommodating various body shapes, built-in brief, side slits for ease of movement, two side pockets, and flatlock seams preventing chafing, these shorts deliver both comfort and functionality.
Laureate 7" Quick Dry Board Shorts
The Laureate 7" Quick Dry Board Shorts, composed of 89.3% polyester and 10.7% Spandex, provide UPF 50+ sun protection, and chlorine resistance. But most importantly, they are breathable, quick-drying, and lightweight.
With a high-rise design, elastic wide waistband for all body shapes, soft brief liner, side slits for easy movement, two side pockets capable of holding a phone, and flatlock seams to prevent chafing, these shorts offer ample coverage both on and off the beach.
Flyleaf UPF 50+ Board Shorts
Embrace the surf with Flyleaf UPF 50+ Board Shorts, crafted from 80.5% nylon and 19.5% Spandex for sun protection, chlorine resistance, and a soft, stretchy feel.
The high-rise design with a wide waistband ensures tummy control, and the above-knee length provides modest coverage, complemented by a built-in brief, two side pockets, and flatlock seams for chafe-free comfort.
RELATED: What Is UPF and Why Does It Matter?
The Best Women's Swim Shorts
Want an independent suit bottom with ample coverage, then get your dibs on Baleaf's best swim shorts for women.
Flyleaf 3" High-Rise Swim Shorts
Make a splash with Flyleaf 3" High-Rise Swim Shorts, composed of 80% nylon and 20% Spandex, offering UPF 50+ sun protection, chlorine resistance, and four-way stretch with moisture-wicking properties.
The high-rise design, seamless front to avoid camel toe, elastic wide waistband for all body shapes, built-in briefs for security and comfort, and flatlock seamlines to reduce chafing make these shorts a sexy and comfortable choice for bottom swimwear.
Laureate UPF50+ High-Rise Swim Shorts
Discover the perfect match for your swim top with Laureate UPF50+ High-Rise Swim Shorts, featuring 9.3% polyester and 10.7% Spandex for UPF 50+ sun protection, chlorine resistance, and a breathable, moisture-wicking, lightweight design.
These high-waisted swim shorts come with a double liner for non-see-through security, two pockets, and flatlock seams to ensure comfort on the beach with an instant tummy tuck effect.
Laureate 5‘’ Quick-dry Swim Shorts
Add a touch of print to your swimwear with Laureate 5'' Quick-dry Swim Shorts, made from 90% polyester and 10% Spandex, offering UPF 50+ sun protection, quick-dry, moisture-wicking, and a breathable, soft, and comfortable feel.
The highly elastic wide waistband suits all body shapes, accompanied by two side pockets, mesh brief lining for breathability and non-see-through coverage, and flattering slits for flexible movement.
#wemovetogether in Style Whether at the Beach or in the Pool
Explore our fantastic Women's Swimming collection, featuring bikinis, one-pieces, off-shoulder styles, and trendy racerback bikinis. Stay sun-safe with our UPF50+ protective apparel or make a statement with our stylish board shorts or swim shorts for those too cool for school.