We've all seen that ridiculously cute swimwear and loved it so much, put it in our cart, and hit the checkout button or walked up to the register with it. Only to be shocked by the amount we saw when everything was finalized; why do swimsuits cost so much? Especially because they're not very big.
Before I began my career as a fashion designer, I used to think these same thoughts and figured it was because the designer or brand was just trying to make extra money for no reason, "they have swimsuits at fill in the blank for so much cheaper!", I used to say myself and have heard. The fact of the matter is that there are many key differences in the cheap swimsuit vs. the expensive swimsuits and it's not just to turn a quick buck.
One of the main reasons that contribute to the cost of swimsuits is first and foremost, the fabric it's made out of. Now this gets a bit grey because swimsuits are small, so they shouldn't take that much fabric to make. That is true, but when it's good fabric, the price is high to begin with, regardless of how much of it you use. Once you factor in lining (any good swimsuit is lined), thread, trims, elastics and closures, you could be looking at upwards of $25-30 per swimsuit just in materials alone.
Why are the fabric and trims so pricey? Because they have to stand up to chlorinated water, the sun, and active conditions. Swimwear fabric is durable so that you can do all of the water loving activities you love, and know that your swimsuit won't dissolve while you're doing it.
Imagine how you would feel if your swimsuit broke while jet skiing or surfing?
The Difficulty Making It
Better swimwear have many processes in bringing them to the shelves of your favorite store. My best selling swimsuit, The Dana 1pc (pictured below), takes 3 hours to make. There are articles of clothing that take less time to make (some shirts, skirts, and some tops just to name a few). Because I make my garments in America or at factories that are practicing ethical environmental and work conditions, it costs more per hour of labor to make my pieces then it would if I chose poorer quality factories.
Better swimwear also has a few processes that go into making them when compared to their less expensive counterparts. Processes, ensure that all of the T's are crossed and the I's dotted, so to speak. It ensures the fabric is prepped and doing what should, the thread is the proper tension, width, and length so that it can do the various things it needs to do. Swimwear can take anywhere from 2-3 different types of machines to construct each unit.
The Technical Side of Swimsuits
Swimwear is extremely technical, more so than most other types of garments. It has to be to ensure the exact fit that our bodies need when we wear it. All of this work happens in the product development phase and often requires a few attempts of pattern revisions and fit rounds to get it just right. It may sound like a lot of work, but it's what gives us all the fits we love when we wear of swimsuits.
When we wear a swimsuit out in public it is the most naked most of us will ever be in public. There is a huge difference in quality level of a premium swimsuit vs. a poor quality swimsuit. This becomes extremely important as we age and our female bodies change with us. When we're young, it may not be that big of a deal. It's a fact that women's bodies change with age, and even if we're super fit or love our bodies, we still need a swimsuit that fits us the way we love. That may mean looking to better made swimwear.
What To Do If You Can't Afford Better Quality Swimsuits
Because we now know some of the reasons that contribute to expensive swimsuits, what can we do if we want that type of quality, but can't afford it? I would recommend buying swimsuits off season. Because it is a seasonal item in many stores (except for in warm weather cities), it makes sense that they go on sale after the season is over...buy your good quality swimsuit then.
Another thing you can do if shopping on line is take advantage of payment systems like Afterpay, Sezzle and others that don't charge interest but allow you to make 4 payments towards the total value of the purchase you're making. The best part is that your item ships right away.
As it relates to swimsuits, the old adage of quality over quantity couldn't be more true. Keep in mind that quality refers to how something is made, not how much it costs. it is possible to buy quality items for less expensive prices but you have to know what to look for. The benefit is a swimsuit that you'll have for years to come and it will look beautiful on you each time you wear it.
What type of swimwear do you like to buy? Comment below and tell us if you knew some of these things about swimwear?