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A growing list of the best independent Australian swimwear labels

IMAGE VIA @SEXIAZ/INSTAGRAM

WORDS BY AMY FOCIC

Cossie, bathers and bikinis.

With our collective COVID-induced hiatuses nearing an end and the weather heating up, it’s about time to strip off in the name of a hot vax summer.


Discover more local designers in our Fashion section. 


Australia is a beach-mad nation, so it’s only apt that we have a host of swimwear labels that are up to the task of making swimmers (or cossies, bathers or togs) fit for our water-obsessed bods. Below, we’ve compiled some of our favourites for your perusal. 

Holiday The Label

The second major fashion venture by Sydney-based designer Emma Mulholland, Holiday The Label has brought ’90s souvenir kitsch back in a big way. The brand’s swimwear offering is a vibrant selection of one-pieces and bikinis, ranging from sizes XS to XXXL. 

holidaythelabel.com

Raq Apparel

Made specifically with women who are a D cup and above in mind, Raq Apparel is on a mission to make swimwear shopping easier for all women. Produced in small, limited edition runs, Raq Apparel’s simple but timeless styles are available in over 30 bra sizes, with more coming later this year.

raqapparel.com

Zulu and Zephyr

Zulu and Zephyr has been a stalwart of Australian swimwear since it was founded in 2012. Inspired by ’70s aesthetics, its swimwear styles don’t compromise on sustainability, with the brand using materials like econyl and ​​repreve in its collections. Its sizes range from 6 to 16.

zuluandzephyr.com

Matteau

Matteau prioritises classic cuts and considered materials, so you can wear your swimwear over and over again. The brand’s range of apparel follows the same style ethos, and all of it’s made in Australia.

matteau-store.com

Form And Fold

 

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When founders Carly and Stephanie became fed up with the lack of unsupportive swimwear for women wearing a D cup and above, Form and Fold was born. Tirelessly sampled and expertly designed, Form and Fold’s sizing supports up to a 16G cup.

formandfold.com

Peony

A leader in the Australian sustainable swimwear space, Peony likely needs no introduction. Embellished with frills and adorned with understated florals, all of its swimwear is made from recycled materials.

peonyswimwear.com

Bamba

Recalling the cheekiness and loud colours of the ’80s, Bamba is made for those who want to stand out in a crowd (or on the beach). While swimwear in the ’80s may not have been made with the environment in mind, Bamba’s pieces are all made from recycled materials.

bambaswim.com.au

Fella Swim

Frequently collaborating with emerging artists to design its prints, Fella is committed to advocacy and doing good. Its nostalgia-inspired cuts can even be customised, with options to alter the band and strap size, as well as padding.

fellaswim.com

Sexiaz

 

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Sexiaz has its origins in bikinis and lingerie made specifically for sex workers, but since 2020, the brand has blown up on Instagram thanks to its custom-made bikinis and tops. Sisters Arielle and Kallista – self-described ‘bikini dealers’ – ensure Sexiaz champions all bodies and sexualities, and is staunchly pro-sex work.  

@sexiazlingerie

Emily Watson

Emily Watson redefines swimwear as we know it, with asymmetrical, string-clad designs that hark back to quintessential Australian beachwear like Zoggs swimsuits and poncho towels. Its made-to-order pieces are all designed and produced in Melbourne.

emilymaywatson.com

Commas

Commas has reinvented what it means to make considered, stylish swimwear for men. The Sydney-based label sources its fine fabrics from Europe and Japan, and each print that finds its way onto a Commas garment is an original artwork.

commas.cc

Bondi Born

 

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A certified B Corporation, Bondi Born is uncompromising in its commitment to sustainable and ethical swimwear. Simple but never boring, its block colour swimsuits in shades like ‘blueberry’ and ‘pistachio’ will endure for many summers to come.

bondiborn.com.au

Cleonie Swim

Known for swimwear made from crinkle-look fabric in colours that evoke rainbow Paddle Pops, Cleonie Swim is all Australian and all made-to-order. The cienna fabric the brand favours is quick-drying and super stretchy, so Cleonie Swim pieces fit nearly every size. 

cleonie.com

Hakea

Produced in limited runs and made from earthy-hued fabrics, Hakea was born from founder Casey’s frustration at the lack of practical, comfortable swimwear to wear in the surf. Hakea’s range of bikinis, rash shirts and one-pieces are made from econyl.

hakeaswim.com

Cooke and Kin

Founded by Australian influencer Olive Cooke, Cooke and Kin swimwear pieces are designed to mix and match to create versatility in your wardrobe. Sustainability and ethical production are at the core of the brand’s ethos, with all swimwear made from econyl in sizes XS to XXL.

cookeandkin.com

Camp Cove

 

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Originally made by founder Katherine’s mum, Camp Cove swimwear hasn’t strayed far from its locally-made roots. Now made in Jervis Bay on the NSW South Coast, Camp Cove’s brightly patterned swimsuits are made with women’s empowerment in mind. They come in sizes six to 16.

campcoveswim.com

Baythe

Designed to be multifunctional, Baythe swimwear is minimalist and practical. Its sustainably made pieces in neutral hues are a nod to Bondi and its active, fashion-centred lifestyle.

baytheswim.com

Esero

Sydney-based label Esero is inspired by founder Sandra’s childhood summers in North Macedonia, resulting in swimwear that is functional and durable yet sleek and understated. Esero has plans for more colourways in its recycled swimwear later this year.

esero.com.au

Charlie Mae


Byron Bay-based label Charlie Mae makes sustainable swimwear in pared-back aesthetics. Designed in small runs and made from recycled materials, Charlie Mae’s offering is intended for the environment-loving consumer.

charliemae.com.au

Saint Somebody

When Sophie Henderson-Smart became fed up with the lack of swimwear options for curvy women, she decided to take matters into her own hands by starting Saint Somebody. Stocking sizes 12 to 22, the brand’s luxe swimwear is made to imbue confidence.

saintsomebody.com.au

Alulu

Alulu makes swimwear that’s comfortable and functional, without sacrificing style. Adorned with exclusive prints from textile artists and made from econyl and repreve, Alulu creates swimwear you can feel good about.

alulu.com.au

Monday Swimwear

The brainchild of Australian bloggers Natasha Oakley and Devin Brugman, Monday Swimwear embodies the pair’s ethos of body positivity. The brand’s flattering cuts and classic block colours mean there’s a Monday Swimwear piece to suit every body.

mondayswimwear.com

Lahana Swim

 

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Inspired by the Australian affinity for sun, sand and skin, Lahana Swim’s minimalistic range holds your new summer staples. Sustainably made from recycled nylon, the cheeky swimwear comes in a rainbow of prints, colours and cuts.

lahana.co

Lé Buns

Melbourne label Lé Buns is known (and loved) for its eco-friendly cotton undergarments and loungewear, but it also offers a versatile array of swimwear. Its swim pieces are made from premium regenerated fibres and each can be tied and worn in different ways. Versatile and earth-friendly? We love to see it.

lebuns.com.au

For more Australian swimwear labels, head here.

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