There was a time when the men’s fashion world was down on board shorts. In theory, the surfer staple was meant to transition between water and land like Friday does to the weekend—effortlessly. The only issue was that their long inseams and unimaginative designs had all the style factor of getting sand in your socks. No more. This new generation of swimwear is shorter, cooler and ready to rock no matter where your trip to the beach takes you. See you on the boardwalk.
The urban surfer
A lot has changed since West Coast hipsters brought boardshorts and hoppy beers to the mainland years ago, but not too much. The beachy stripes and laid-back vibes of these modern trunks from Saturdays NYC remain the same, but they also come infused with more fashion-conscious details like a thigh-length construction, subtle back pocket and slimmer leg that look as much at home on the L-train as they do in the sand
The tech trunk of all trades
Your typical board short has you covered on the street and in the sea, but the right pair has you covered on the trails, in the gym and everywhere in between. OurCaste’s Rocko trunk is loaded with technical features from a quick-drying, moisture-wicking fabric to a waistband that can be adjusted for maximum mobility whether you’re running or lifting weights. Oh, and the street style-inspired looks won’t get you mistaken for a tourist, either.
The summer statement
Forgot your boring, basic trunks behind at baggage check? Good. A pair of shorts in a summer-appropriate floral print like these ones from Forever 21 will help you stand out on the beach. A seven-inch inseam keep things looking as on-point as the rest of your outfit, while the fully lined interior means you can take the party straight from the hotel bar into the pool.
The slimmed-down cargo trunk
It doesn’t take much more than surf, sun, sand and a little beer for an ideal day at the beach, but sometimes you need to bring a little extra along. These nylon board shorts from Apolis and Global Citizen feature a roomy side pocket with ample room for your everyday carry and a slim silhouette that keeps the extra bulk down to a minimum. There’s a key holder built in, but note that there’s no waterproof pouch for your smartphone—we’re firm believers in letting our out-of-office reply handle things.
The beach boss
More private dock than surf shack? These shorts from Thom Browne are made from luxe and lightweight seersucker designed to keep you as cool and dry as more technical materials. The classic red, white and blue stripes pair perfectly with a polo and a pair of boat shoes.