When you are going on a beach holiday, you want to make sure you have a good bathing suit or bikini. Check our article on the best bathings suits for women over 40 for that. However, just as important is to find the best bathing suit cover ups.
A great swimsuit cover up can help you to feel more confident on the beach or by the pool as well as ensuring that you can easily head from the beach to lunch. Below, you’ll find all our favorite cover-ups as well as ways to wear them.
What to look for to find the best bathing suit cover ups?
Below are some of the requirements to think about when choosing a good bathing suit cover up:
Ideally it fits with your bathing suit
Why should coordinating your clothes stop at the beach? You could either choose a matching style of cover-up, or you could always opt for a neutral such as black or white which will go with all of your swimwear.
Or, of course, the other way around – a plain swimsuit and a patterned cover-up.
Is it easy to put on?
You want adding your cover-up to your bathing suit to be easy and quick as you may be taking it on and off several times during the day.
Seafolly Desert Tribe Kaftan (similar here)
It’s good for the beach but can also double as a stylish dress
Choose the right cover-up and you can wear for lunch or even dinner. Or, you could even style your cover-up as a long duster jacket for another outfit idea. Of course, not all bathing suit cover ups need to comply with this, but it’s nice to have a few options that can do this.
It needs to protect you from the sun
Bathing suit cover ups shouldn’t just cover up the parts of your body you perhaps aren’t so confident about. They should also cover your shoulders and back to protect you from the sun and its aging effects
No matter which beach destination you choose, there is likely to be plenty of sun and beautiful beaches so coverups (and lots of sunscreen) are essential. Below are some of the best tunics and caftans for the beach this season.
Suzie @suzie.richetti above opts for a maxi cover up that could easily take her from beach to lunch.
It needs to be stylish
It goes without saying that you want to feel good about yourself, especially on the beach where you may be more conscious of your body. A great bathing suit cover up will give you confidence!
The best bathing suit cover ups to choose this season
Now that you’re thinking about the style and type of cover-up you might like, below you will find some of the most stylish swimsuit cover-ups to choose this season:
Short swimsuit cover-ups
A short swimsuit cover up that covers the most important areas is fabulous for strolling on the beach and would also look lovely worn over leggings with sandals for evening or with your white jeans for an evening away from the beach.
A belt can change the silhouette of a shirt dress so you can achieve different looks.
The Robin Piccone cover-up (below) features a tie neckline and stripe detailing will add interest to your bathing suit outfit.
The Blooming Jelly cover-up (below) features an interesting textural pattern, and comes in a huge choice of colors. Reviewers say it is classy, nicely made, and figure-flattering.
The chiffon cover-up (below) features boho styling, and reviewers say they got lots of compliments when wearing it.
For a warmer and more casual cover up, how about the striped cover-up (below) which could be ideal for cooler vacation spots or to pop over your shorts when the sun goes down.
Of course, you don’t just have to choose a top to cover up with at the beach. You could choose an all-in-one to wear over your swimsuit. Then if you’re heading for lunch, you pop your sandals on, or some sneakers for sightseeing.
Sandra @lapecosapreciosa above chooses a romper style cover-up and teams with bright sandals.
Now, let’s take a look at some longer dresses you could choose to wear on the beach.
long cover up
Moving on to maxi styles, the linen cover-up below offers some subtle sex appeal, thanks to the side splits, which still keeping you covered.
A maxi cover up dress is a lovely chic option for the beach. This one (below) doesn’t cover your shoulders so be sure to add plenty of sun protection, but it will be super stylish when you go for dinner on the beach in the evening.
If you want to cover-up any lumps, bumps or so-called “imperfections,” then print can be a great way to confuse the eye and draw attention away. The Lands’ End dress (below) comes in an on-trend tie-dye.
Robyn @robbiesue1970 above chooses a floral print maxi style.
Wrap dresses are incredibly flattering for women of all body shapes. So, why not a wrap style cover-up? The H&M wrap (below) is super easy to slip on over your swimsuit and is usually released in different colors and prints each summer season.
Plus, you could easily wear it with leggings or pants for evening.
The ruching on the wrap cover-up dress (below) makes this a very flattering choice. Plus, it is made of rayon and silk so has a luxurious feel while keeping you cool.
printed cover-up dress
We like the graphic print on the v-neck cover-up below and the fact it ties at the waist to add shape to your silhouette. You can decide how tight you want to tie the belt for the cover-up effect you want to achieve.
While many cover-ups are loose, if you like to emphasize your waist, the pull-on cover-up (below) is perfect. It comes in a wide choice of prints and patterns, and reviewers say the drawstring waist makes it flattering for a number of body types.
long sleeve dress
Many beach cover-ups are sleeveless. But, if you prefer to cover-up your upper arms because you don’t feel confident about them or you want to avoid sunburn, a longer sleeved style like these ones below could be the answer.
You could choose a very glamorous option that will definitely take you from beach to bar. The print on the maxi cover-up (below) has an on-trend 70s feel. There is a good choice of colors and different grahical or boho prints in this style so you’re sure to find a favorite.
The crochet style (below) drapes across the body. Like many cover-ups, it is see-thru though, so this is one to keep for the beach rather than doubling as a dress. Unless, of course, you add another layer underneath, like a camisole.
Melanie @melanie.rae.miller above shows how a crochet cover-up can look super stylish when you can see your swimsuit underneath.
I couldn’t resist adding some extra kaftans as they are one of the easiest styles to wear at the beach.
They provide the best coverup and you can potentially feel like and look like a goddess in one of these. It feels exotic and glamorous to wear one.
You could easily wear for the beach during the day and then add some heels and jewelry for dinner. If you choose a short cover-up, you can wear pants underneath.
Onto some kimono options for you. Kimonos are great worn as you would a jacket, for instance over your t-shirt and shorts to add coverage and style, as well as wearing over your swimsuit.
Sheree @shesheshow above chooses to perfectly match her swimsuit with her cover-up.
If you just want to add a little extra coverage while you’re on the beach – perhaps because you aren’t so confident about your hips or thighs – then a short wrap or sarong can be the perfect option.
You could also try a wrap style skirt that you can simply wrap around your swimsuit when you want to leave the beach and go get a drink or a meal.
Prefer to cover up your lower body too? Then these cover-up pants are for you.
They are easy to combine with some of your tunics and kaftans too!
Nikki @midlifechic above opts for print pants for a day at the beach.
What to wear with your cover-ups
Now that you’ve chosen your favorite cover-up style, how exactly will you wear it? Take a look (below) for cover-up inspiration.
The obvious way (with your swimsuit)
Of course, your beach cover-up is designed primarily to be worn over your swimsuit. You can choose a cover-up in matching or contrasting shades.
Add some leggings for evening
Leggings are perfect too. So comfortable and easy to wear on holiday. You can pop your leggings under your cover-up so you’re ready for lunch or for sightseeing. And they’re easy to pack in your suitcase as they don’t take up much room at all.
Check this article for the best leggings for women over 40.
Your swimsuit cover-up doesn’t have to be kept only for the beach. You can wear for day-to-day too by adding over the top of your t-shirt and jeans.
Summersalt The Silky Luxe Short Effortless Shirtdress Cover-Up – AG Farrah Crop Bootcut Jeans – Paul Green Cayanne Peep Toe Sandal – Tory Burch Small Kira Chevron Leather Convertible Shoulder Bag – Lorsoilyn Raffia Earrings
I love wearing my shorts on vacation. They make for a great relaxed look while combining them with kaftans and kimonos.
Elan Dobby Stripe Long Sleeve Cover-Up Shirtdress – NYDJ Linen Blend Bermuda Shorts – Tory Burch Howell Court Sneaker – Tory Burch Small Kira Chevron Leather Convertible Shoulder Bag – COIRIS Seed Bead Necklace and Earrings Set
With glamorous accessories
Choose a glamorous cover-up that can easily take you to a fancy lunch or dinner.
Beach pants and kaftan together
If you’re looking to put together a full outfit that will look lovely for lunch, add your kaftan over your beach pants.
MJ SERECA Tassel Kimono – La Blanca Cross Back One-Piece Swimsuit – Summersalt The Easy Breezy Eco Voile Wrap Pant – SARTO by Franco Sarto Greene Sandal – Massimo Dutti Raffia Tote – Brixton Joanna Straw Hat
For more guidance check our article on how to wear shorts over 40.
As a lightweight jacket for evening
Even if you’re heading on vacation somewhere warm, you will want a lightweight cover-up. Your beach kaftan can do double duty as a cover-up for your shoulders in the evening.
Layered over a t-shirt
The maxi dress (below) would look great layered over a plain white t-shirt.
If you’ve chosen a wrap style, wear off the beach too over your leggings or jeans.
ViX Swimwear Lia Wrap Cover-Up Dress – Lyssé Flattering Leggings – Paul Green Cayanne Peep Toe Sandal – Tory Burch Small Kira Chevron Leather Convertible Shoulder Bag – COIRIS Seed Bead Necklace and Earrings Set
Top brands for cover-ups
Your beach cover ups together in one capsule
Take a look (below) at the cover-up outfits, together in one capsule. You can see you can mix and match the different cover-ups, pants, shorts and swimsuits to create lots of different looks.
shop the best bathing suit cover-ups here:
More bathing suit cover-up inspiration for you
The capsule (below) is mostly past season, but should still give you outfit ideas for the beach.
I hope you have been able to find the best bathing suit cover ups for your needs.
If you need something to wear underneath, be sure to check out the best bathing suits and swimwear.
Have you find the best bathing suit cover ups yet for your style?
- The Best Women’s Beach Outfits For Your Summer Vacation
- The Best Bathing Suits For Women Over 40 – Swim Suits That Make You Feel Fabulous!
- 20 Of The Best One-Piece Bathing Suits For Women Over 40
- Stylish Travel Clothes For Women That Are Stylish AND Comfortable
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Feature image by Sheree @shesheshow
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