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Black-Owned Swimwear Brands for Your Next Trip to the Beach

May 31, 2022 02:00PM ● By Boitumelo Masihleho

It’s almost time to think about which new swimsuit you plan on showing out in this season to safely soak up that sweet sweet vitamin D. Finding a great swimsuit is truly an art form. From one-pieces, bikinis, or microkinis – the styles are endless. We all want to feel protected from the sun, and that includes wearing sunscreen and the right piece that makes our bodies feel secure and sexy. Although more swimsuit brands have become more inclusive, we’ll be honest and say that the idea of shopping from Black-owned designers—who firsthand understand our bodies—definitely floats our boat.


Shay Johnson and Paula Hess founded DOS SWIM in 2019. Their first collection was based on their personal favorite styles, everything they design are pieces they themselves want to wear. They wanted to create something for themselves and their friends.  Finding the right fit was always so hard for their respective body shapes.  Bottoms, specifically, were always a point of contention, they were either too low on the leg or too high, exposing too much or too little. They wanted to fix that.


Andrea Iyamah

Founded in 2011, by Nigerian fashion designer Andrea Dumebi Iyamah, the clothing line is strongly inspired by ethnic cultures and elements of nature with retro classic silhouettes and a contemporary edge that appeals to the woman who is an adventurer in spirit, mind, and style. Andrea Iyamah adopts design elements that stay true to creating authentic clothing and resort wear that celebrate her African roots and cultures beyond.Operating out of Toronto, Lagos, and New York, the brand caters to females across borders who are confident, adventurous, and unafraid of clothing designed with a statement.

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Ego Swim

Founded by a group of friends who grew into sisters, the collection is a judgment-free zone for confident women, go-getters, and travel enthusiasts, that love to make a splash where ever they land. The brand's collection includes sleeved one-pieces, a bandeau-style bikini top, and a one-piece that ties up the sides. “It dawned on us that we shared the same interest as most women - shopping for the sexiest and most comfortable swimwear was a top priority for vacations,” the founders say on their website.



This award-winning African fashion brand is known for its bold, fearless patterns. Look fabulous in one of their high-waisted bathing suits with matching headpieces. Launched in 2015, ÖFUURË, has continued its dedication to creating versatile pieces that highlight the underrepresented lively colors and beautiful patterns of the African continent. Ofure is an Ishan word meaning "it is well". The founder, Tehilah Abakasanga, is a Toronto-based designer who is bringing the beauty of African prints to the world with her colorful collections of swimwear, boots, and dresses. Her brand has been co-signed by superstars like Kelly Rowland and Tia Mowry, who've rocked colorful pieces.


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Sunglasses are the perfect seasonless accessory. Not only are sunglasses great fashion items that pull any outfit together, but they protect your eyes from unwanted sun damage. Read More » 

BFyne Swimwear

Buki Ade is a Nigerian American fashion designer. By utilizing culturally inclusive designs, she has transformed and revolutionized the swimsuit industry. Born and raised in Nigeria, Buki’s family emigrated from Nigeria to the US when she was 8 years old. Since debuting her first collection in 2013, Ade has transformed and revolutionized the swimsuit industry by creating looks that flatter every curve. Her collection 2021 in collaboration with Models of Color Matter, was the toast of Miami Swim Week. Ade has created bold pieces featured on the pages of Vogue, Glamour, and Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue. BFyne is a contemporary swim and resort-wear brand, and body positivity is a foundational principle at BFyne. BFyne’s list of patrons remains star-studded with fashion icons such as Beyoncé, Iman, Alicia Keys, Eva Marcille, and Taraji P Henson.



Brooklyn-based swimwear designer Tennille McMillan founded Nakimuli in 2009 as a way to celebrate women who like to experiment with their personal styles. McMillan developed her skills by making clothes for family members and costumes for fellow dance students at Hunter College. After graduating with a BA in dance, Tennille decided to pursue fashion instead of dancing professionally. That is when Nakimuli  began to take shape. Since then, McMillan has garnered a star-studded client list that includes singer-songwriter Erykah Badu, Orange Is The New Black star Danielle Brooks, and America’s Next Top Model winner Eva Marcille.


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Avid Swim

Avid Swim is a sustainable luxury swimwear brand based in New York City. Designer, Gionna Nicole launched  Avid Swim back in 2010 and  has since continued to, not only grow the brand, but also develop amazing eye catching swimwear. Since then, Avid Swim has shown at New York Fashion Week twice, grabbing the attention of major publications and blogs like, Vogue, Allure, Marie Claire, XoNecole and TravelNoire. Avid Swim loves the idea of creative collaboration and has had the pleasure to collaborate with Latina Fashion Blogger Martha Luna, EIC of MDOLLNYC.COM on The Caicos Collection and plans to launch sun-care in 2020.


Swimsuits For All x Gabi Fresh

After a whopping 13 collaborative collections with plus-size retailer Swimsuits For All, influencer, model, and designer Gabi Gregg, or as we know her Gabi Fresh, knows how to create the perfect swimsuit. Her latest go for spring is a minimalist’s dream, with bikinis and one-pieces in soft pastel shades and classic striped patterns all making the cut. Even better, all of her suits are available in sizes 10 to 26 and cup sizes ranging from D/DD-G/H.


Matte Collection

The brand that was founded by women for women, created huge waves this year with its collection. At Miami Swim Week 2021m, they almost broke the internet with very tiny bikinis modeled by none other than body positive influencer, Angela Simmons. Their currently running a campaign with new swimwear modeled by none other than Meagan Good. They also had a jaw-dropping collection with rapper, Saweetie.

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Mint Swim

Founded by former reality star and entrepreneur, Draya Michele in 2011. Since its debut, the brand has consistently sold out of the many that hug the body and accentuate curves.



Founded by Jessica Wong, the swimwear is made for women to feel comfortable and confident while wearing their handmade, luxurious one-piece and two-piece swimsuits. The entire collection varies from conservative to risqué but is always classy. “Xhaleswim is all about inclusion. We want women to stop shying away from swimwear and instead to get excited about it!” 






Travel Noire

Hello Beautiful

Refinery 29 

 Boitumelo Masihleho is a South African digital content creator. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Rhodes University in Journalism and Media Studies and Politics and International Studies. She's an experienced multimedia journalist who is committed to writing balanced, informative and interesting stories on a number of topics. Boitumelo has her own YouTube channel where she shares her love for affordable beauty and lifestyle content. 

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