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Between saltwater, chlorine, washing machines and more, we put our swimsuits through a lot in the summer months. And while pricier pieces can be a good investment — occasionally — I’ve personally splurged on expensive bikini brands in the past just to be disappointed after one trip to the beach. The way I see it: Why sink money into something you’re going to expose to the elements over and over again?
Moral of the story: If you’re looking to cut corners when it comes to your shopping budget, swimwear’s a good place to start.
Luckily, there are tons of affordable (yet expensive-looking) options for every size — whether you’re on the hunt for bikinis, one-pieces or something in between. And the best part is, all of these stellar options are under $100 — but you’d never guess by looking at ‘em.
Shop: Madewell Abbey Structured One-Piece Swimsuit, $69.50
A bustier-inspired black one-piece with supportive underwire will pay for itself in spades. Plus, it doubles as a bodysuit — win-win.
This ubiquitous smocked fabric is everywhere for a reason — it’s cute and comfy, and this dainty floral print is everything.
Gingham is never going out of style as far as I’m concerned — and I’d definitely wear this chic lavender one-piece endlessly in the warmer months. Plus, how cute are the dainty-bow and scalloped-trim details?
Removable padded cups are essential for those of us who like to have the option. This tie-front bikini comes in multiple pastel hues and an impressive size range.
Shop: South Beach Curve Exclusive Belt Swimsuit, $20.95 (orig. $64)
Shop: Cupshe Wavy Edge One-Shoulder Bikini, $32.99
The one-shoulder look is huge in swimwear right now — and this scalloped asymmetrical bikini looks way more expensive than it actually is.
Shop: LA Hearts x PacSun Blue Hazel Bustier One-Piece Swimsuit, $52.95
Calling all girly girls: A tie-front one-piece with a light-blue, ditsy-floral print is everything your spring-summer dreams are made of. Peep the front keyhole detail.
Shop: Boohoo Polka Dot Ruffle High-Waist Bikini, $16 (orig. $40)
This high-waisted bikini with a polka-dot print and flirty ruffles is giving all the retro vibes.
With a side-tie detail and one-shoulder strap, you won’t have to worry about blending in while wearing this black one-piece wonder.
Shop: Contrast Crochet Edge Bandeau Bikini, $33.90 (orig. $66.95)
It’s black and white and chic all over — this bandeau bikini with contrast stitching will be your new take-everywhere go-to.
Feeling like a fashion risk-taker? Make a futuristic statement with a sleek, all-white silhouette featuring allover mesh.
An earth-tone, polka-dot string bikini you can layer under white denim and cutoff jean shorts on vacay? Yes, please. (BTW, you can choose high-waisted bottoms instead of cheeky ones, if that’s more your style.)
Shop: Avenue Ithica Underwire One-Piece Swimsuit, $45.50 (orig. $99)
If you’re looking for something that’s full-coverage and supportive but still sexy, look no further than this V-cut one-piece with sheer mesh deets.
A front cut-out and mixed prints make this ruffly, girly one-piece ultra-cool and on-trend.
If you enjoyed this story, check out Sophie Ross’ pick for the one summer sandal you’ll ever need!
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