Shirts for swimming?
November 15, 2009 7:57 PM   Subscribe

What type of shirt do I wear swimming? Where do I buy them?

I'm going swimming (in a pool) soon, but for whatever reason, I've never felt comfortable in public not wearing a shirt, even in situations where it's expected, like swimming in a pool.

I've seen some shirts that are meant to be worn in the water. Is it normal to wear these in a pool, or are they meant more for surfing? Where do you buy them? I assume wearing a T-shirt will end badly, since it would just get soaking wet and cling to my body.
posted by fogster to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You want a rash guard. They're often used by surfers, but for any sporty activity that involves water, really. I once knew someone who wore one just to swim due to old self-harm scars on her arms.
posted by cmgonzalez at 7:59 PM on November 15, 2009 [1 favorite]

Search for surf shirt or rash guard.
posted by Frank Grimes at 8:00 PM on November 15, 2009

Rash guards, aka swim shirts, for the win. There are many types, and some will even work to keep you warm by acting like a wetsuit (although not anywhere as close as effective).
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:12 PM on November 15, 2009

I wear a 'rashie' for sun smart purposes, and they are common in Australia. (I also like the cover up factor.) (unfortunately more common on guys and children, then people my age and gender.)

I was in a spa once and the staff told me "hey, you can't wear clothes in the spa" - so that had to be sorted out. They begrudgingly admitted that it was a swim suit. So you might face something like that.
posted by titanium_geek at 8:17 PM on November 15, 2009

Oh, and if people ask why you're wearing a shirt, (some people have no sense of personal space) just tell them that you burn easily.
posted by atrazine at 8:19 PM on November 15, 2009

I bought a size XL UV shirt from I wear a size 18, and this blue shirt fits a bit large, but protects me from sunburn. It was about $35US.
posted by Jinx of the 2nd Law at 8:34 PM on November 15, 2009

I wore something like that when I was younger (for sunscreen purposes) and it felt pretty awkward and and uncomfortable when wet. You may have a different experience than me though.

Don't listen to people saying you can't wear a shirt in the pool. Wear whatever makes you feel comfortable.
posted by kylej at 8:44 PM on November 15, 2009

Here are some rash guards on sale - short and long sleeves.
posted by killy willy at 7:18 AM on November 16, 2009

whoops, I should've verified your gender before I linked to women's tops. sorry about that.
posted by killy willy at 7:20 AM on November 16, 2009

I ordered this from Amazon for my trip to Puerto Rico: O'Neill men's rash tee Men's Silver. It's loose-fitting unlike more rash guards, looks great in the water - my wife said I looked like a surfer.

Also, I got this from Ebay: Capri Leg Thin Thai Cotton BOLD BLACK Fisherman Pants.

I gotta keep the area from my belly button to the bottom of my knees covered for religious reasons.
posted by exhilaration at 11:42 AM on November 16, 2009

I am Pasty White and it was just the ticket when visiting my sister-in-law's pool last summer.

Lands' End has them, too. And if you order online, you can usually return them to a local Sears store (so no shipping!).
posted by wenestvedt at 1:27 PM on November 16, 2009

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