Back in February when I broke my shopping ban, I purchased a lot of Patagonia's swim wear. Some were on sale but some were not. But I justified the purchase by saying these were for my swim workouts (I had to go from running to swimming when I messed up my knee skiing earlier this year). And I'm glad to report that yes, I've been putting all my swim wear to good use at the gym pool. So it was totally worth purchasing these various swim suits (though to be honest I probably didn't have to purchase quite so many, but alas the sale got to me).
And I have to say Patagonia makes some of the best swim wear I've ever tried. I tried the Grana ones (review here), which were a total dud. And before that, when I would go on the occasional swim I would wear some Victoria Secret bikini top and bottom (and oh man those push up bikini tops were just ridiculous). I was looking for practical, easy to wear bikinis that stayed put (I always prefer bikinis because my super long torso can't handle one piece suits). And these Patagonia swim suits fit the bill.
The bikini tops tie in such a way that you only have to tie one string at your back (you basically have to put your head and arms through the strings as if you're going to wear a smock). But this ingenious way of tying the bikini ensures that you don't need to tie the string at two separate places. Those halter style triangle bikinis sometimes give me neck strain, but not these!
Also the nano grip bikinis are a bit more expensive but they do as they advertise: the material does grip to your body. It's a bit of a sticky rubbery texture, which felt a bit weird for me at first but when I wore it, I couldn't even tell. These bikinis are probably best for those who swim in the ocean or surf (or body surf). These bikinis don't budge. But if you're just swimming in a pool like me, you really don't need to buy these more expensive swim suits. The regular ones do the job just as well.
And the best part of these bikinis? Patagonia tries to make them as responsibly as possible. All their swim wear is Fair Trade certified, meaning those making the suits are paid fairly and are working in safe conditions. Also all swim wear is partially made from recycled polyester.
So if you're looking to buy a new swim suit this summer I really encourage you to try out Patagonia. There doesn't seem to be a whole lot of ethically or socially responsibly made swim wear out there yet, but you can always count on Patagonia to make quality items and make them with a conscious.