Turn that swimsuit into a full, statement-making outfit.

By Samantha Sutton
Jun 26, 2020 @ 2:50 pm
Credit: Tawni Bannister

With the amount of stuff needed for a trip to the beach — towels, sunscreen, a ton of snacks and drinks, etc. — we sometimes forget all about cover-ups. What to wear over our one-piece or bikini is just as important as the swimsuit itself, and while old, oversized T-shirts and sarongs will always do the trick, it doesn't hurt to think outside the box.

Beyond the basics, there are a ton of pieces in our closet that can double as cute cover-ups, whether it's a cardigan (very Bella Hadid) or a loose-fitting pair of pants. Plus, the best part is that once we're dried and done for the day, these items will still work at casual, outdoor restaurants or a walk on the beach.

Take a look at a few unexpected cover-up ideas ahead, then dig through your own wardrobe to compile your next statement-making beach (or pool!) outfit.

A Sweatshirt

Credit: Tawni Bannister

While you might not want to wear this on, say, a 90-degree day, a bright sweater or sweatshirt will definitely come in handy once the weather cools off at night. We suggest investing (or borrowing) an oversized option, this way you can pull an Ariana Grande and wear it as a dress.

A Scarf

Credit: Tawni Bannister

It's the same idea as a sarong, and it's highly possible you have one sitting unused in a drawer right now. Aside from wrapping a scarf around your waist, you can also style it as a bandana or headband. Paired with a pair of large-frame sunglasses, it'll create a retro '70s-inspired look.

A Pair of Denim Shorts

Credit: Tawni Bannister

Jeans aren't exactly the quickest to dry, so you might want to keep these shorts in your beach bag and wear them once the day is through. They'll easily make your swimwear look like a crop-top or bodysuit, while a floppy hat will tie the whole outfit together.

A Cardigan

Credit: Tawni Bannister

It might seem like a strange choice at first, but Bella Hadid has already pulled this trick, completing her yacht outfit with a pair of red bike shorts. Feel free to follow the model's lead, or simply choose a longer sweater and belt it, creating your very own wrap dress.

A Striped Shirt

Credit: Tawni Bannister

True, it's the simplest and easiest choice, but by mixing prints and adding a few expertly-placed knots, it will come across as anything but.

A Light Pair of Pants

Credit: Tawni Bannister

Not only are a breezy, printed pair of pants a great alternative to your average sundress, when styled with a bikini top, earrings, and wedges, they'll feel downright fancy.

Photos by Tawni Bannister. Styled by Calvy Click. Hair and makeup by Ashley Rebecca. Modeling by Emma Bartlett and Kennidy Hunter.