EXTRA,  GEAR,  July 2023,  May 2024,  Product Reviews

Best jammers, briefs and shorts for outdoor swimmers

Whether you’re after a flexible fit for training, thermal fabric for core warmth or a lightweight hybrid short for impromptu dips, we’ve got you covered with our guide to the best jammers, briefs and shorts for outdoor swimmers.

Best jammers for pool training | COOTS SG Jammer, £110
Best multi-use shorts | FINISTERRE Merlin Board Shorts, £110
Best shorts for sinking legs | BUDDYSWIM Neoprene Floating Pants, €99



They say: Streamlined jammer swim shorts using Econyl, a recycled material made from ocean plastics and nylon waste, for warm water swimming or quick, icy dips. The Hythe jammers are for fast, faff-free swims outdoors or when the thought of clambering in and out of a wetsuit is enough to put you off your swim. (Waist 28”-38”).

We say: These are a staple of our tester’s kit bag for wild swims. Less structured than more racing-styled jammers, they are supremely comfortable. The material is soft but sturdy and has lasted well. The higher waist gives good coverage and there is a front lining to ensure modesty is preserved; however, it is not the largest of linings! Our tester loved the Tarmac colour, which is a dark blue/grey. A decent pair of jammers at an affordable price.



They say: Chill out this season in our Mellow shorts. If your ideal getaway is all about relaxing and going with the flow, this floral pair is for you! They’re made from 100% super-soft, quick drying recycled Repreve polyester, with soft mesh lining, and come in a mid length. Mellow is a new print inspired by retro floral prints with a vibrant colour palette. Each pair comes with a matching swim bag. (Waist 35.5”-49.5”).

We say: We love the Boardies concept – matching father and child swimwear in limited edition artist collaborations and Liberty prints. The super soft recycled fabric, in a vibrant floral ‘Mellow’ print, felt strong and durable and was remarkably quick to dry. Although the ‘classic length’ fit felt comfortable, the fabric snagged around the thighs with swimming so felt slightly restrictive in the water, but they’re great for recreational dips. We appreciated the inclusion of the drawstring bag in matching fabric.

BUDGY SMUGGLER Cheeky Cheetahs


They say: Unleash your Cheeky Cheetah with this exclusive Budgy Smuggler print. All Budgy Smugglers are 100% Australian made in our factory in Sydney with the best quality fabrics. We understand when it comes to smuggling your budgy there can be no compromise on quality. Made from 86% recycled polyester and 14% elastane, these trunks feature 80-90hrs chlorine resistance and SPF 50+. (Waist: 28”-40”).

We say: Banish boring swimwear! Australian brand Budgy Smuggler make fun trunks that top the table in out-there designs. Our tester loved this summery print, but choose from everything from passion fruit to rubber ducks. As well as getting yourself noticed, they are a well-made and comfy pair of trunks that are designed to last rather than just being fast fashion. The brand also offers the option to design your own custom swimwear.

BUDDYSWIM Neoprene Floating Pants


They say: The Buddyswim neoprene buoyancy pants are designed to provide additional buoyancy in the hips and legs, allowing a correct horizontal position in the water, improving hydrodynamics. Made with 3mm trilaminate neoprene in the front and back and two 5mm side panels for greater buoyancy and roll control. Suitable for any level of swimmer, in the pool and open water. (Waist: 28”-41”).

We say: In the past, neoprene trunks were black. You could (almost) get away with wearing them without anyone noticing. Not these. The bright orange colour is visible from miles away, which is probably a good thing in open water. The nylon plus neoprene fabric is hard wearing, making it suitable for wild swimming adventures. We wore these in 10 degree water and they kept us toasty. The buoyancy is less than you get from a full wetsuit or a pull buoy but enough to give your legs a lift and speed a boost.



They say: Swim shorts made in East London inspired by the Thames Path Sturgeon. Expertly constructed from an ultra chlorine resistant techno techno techno fabric. The regenerated nylon (Econyl) is made from rescued waste that would otherwise pollute our Earth and Oceans. Produced in a zero-waste factory. Limited quantity. (Waist: 28”-40”).

We say: We felt fast and streamlined in these before we even got into the water! Curved seams hug the body and silicone grippers on the legs keep everything in place. The snug fit feels aquadynamic but is still comfortable for long swims. The simple contrast design is eye-catching but subtle. Our only niggle was the full inner pant lining – some may like the stability, but our tester felt the extra material was unnecessary and a front lining for modesty would suffice. Yes, these trunks are expensive, but they are made to last – and they feel amazing on!


69 CHF

They say: Swimwear that fights for the oceans. The Partisan Jammer embodies performance, power and dedication. Made from regenerated post-consumer plastic and fishing nets, it is light and stretchy for freedom of movement. Shark Rebellion swimwear has been developed in collaboration with elite swimmers and athletes in Switzerland.

We say: We loved the bold colours and contrasting logo. These jammers are comfortable, smooth, robust and suitable for pool or open water swimming. They are sleek and fast and perfect for training. We also like that Shark Rebellion use material that is 100% made from fishing nets and industrial plastic removed from the ocean and donate a portion of their profits to environmental causes. The only slight niggle is that the draw cord is a couple of centimetres too short. This isn’t a reason not to buy a pair but makes it fiddly to do a double bow. Also check out Shark Rebellion’s briefs and low-waist trunks.

FINISTERRE Merlin Board Shorts


They say: Our premium engineered, mid-rise, 19” board shorts built with fully recycled materials. The Merlin board shorts are specifically designed for surfers by surfers with four-way stretch, secure side pocket and no-rub bonded seams. They are roomy without being loose, allowing freedom of movement. Featuring a secure side pocket water release section and bungee key loop, and no-rub bonded seams. (Waist 28”-38”).

We say: We were surprised by how lightweight and silky these knee-length board shorts felt. They had a barely-there comfort, thanks in part to the no-rub bonded seams, and the four-way stretch gave remarkable freedom of movement despite their length. We liked the thoughtful design features such as the zipped front pocket and rubber nodules on the waist cord for grip and security. They do lack a mesh lining, which might not be to everyone’s tastes.

FUNKY TRUNKS Mixed Mess Sidewinder Trunks


They say: On a recent staff bonding trip to Sweden our design team misunderstood the itinerary and thought the Northern Lights was a karaoke bar in Mykonos. With only bikinis and boardshorts to wear, the team spent the trip huddled in the Ice Hotel creating prints. They tried to design a vertical stripe but were so cold they ended up with prints like this. (Waist: 30”-38”).

We say: With eco-friendly fabric made from recycled plastic bottles, superior build quality and a pattern that reminds us of a 1980s sci-fi cartoon, what’s not to love about these new Sidewinder trunks from Australian brand FunkyTrunks. The 14cm sides are skimpier than their Classic trunks, but the single fully-lined front panel gives good support and comfort. A durable pair of trunks that feel great on and brought a much-needed blast of Aussie sunshine to our tester’s rainswept British lake swims!

SOUL CAP Men’s Swimming Boxers


They say: Athletic isn’t a shape – it’s a state of mind. Discover the ideal combination of comfort and performance with our Men’s Swimming Boxers, available in sizes from XS to 3XL. Crafted to provide a comfortable and flexible swimming experience, these boxers are designed for swimmers of all sizes. Dive in confidently, as our super-stretchy swimwear, made from recycled materials, ensures you can move freely in the water. (Waist 24”-48”).

We say: With contrast overlock stitching on the seams and branded waistband, these ‘swimming boxers’ do look more like a pair of boxer shorts than swimming trunks. The soft and stretchy material gave a looser fit and the high waistband offered more coverage compared to other trunks on test. They’re a good choice if you prefer more coverage but find jammers too long and briefs too brief.

ZOGGS Dune Jett Jammer


They say: Experience ultimate comfort with the Zoggs Dune Jett Jammer. The longer length and front triangle panel with no centre seam provides more coverage and comfort. With its sleek design that contours into the body, this jammer is the perfect choice for swimmers looking to make a splash. Featuring our eco friendly, 100% chlorine proof Ecolast+ fabric made with recycled plastic bottles. (Waist: 30”-40”).

We say: Snug fit and the integral front panel gave good coverage and support while remaining streamlined. This length is longer than others on test and a dependable choice for pool and open water swimming. Compared to the vibrant designs of the Zoggs women’s open water range, the men’s collection is very traditional – predominantly black with minimalist graphic patterns. Great if that’s your vibe, but we’d like to see a bit of colour for men too!

ZOGGS Pixel Print Mid Jammer


They say: The Pixel Print Jammer is a discreet homage to Zoggs. With a pixelated Zoggs logo down the left side. Triangle front lined for extra modesty and a drawstring for the perfect fit – you can’t go wrong!

We say: If these are anything like the previous pair of Zoggs jammers we owned, they will hold their shape and last for years. Comfortable, ideal for pool training, recreational outdoor swimming or wearing under a wetsuit – exactly as jammers should be, really.

ZONE3 Yulex Jammer


They say: The Men’s Yulex Natural Rubber Jammer is made for all your open water adventures. Featuring 1.5mm thickness throughout and an adjustable drawstring they provide core warmth and protection from the elements while allowing great freedom of movement, whatever the activity. They are eco-friendly too; by using natural rubber, the jammers CO2 emissions are reduced by up to 80%.

We say: While lacking the lift of neoprene buoyancy jammers, we noticed these Yulex jammers held our legs slightly higher in the water than a standard costume. The warmth gain is negligible unless combined with something like the Zone 3 Yulex Long Sleeve Top. Being more robust than regular jammers, we felt these are best suited to days on the beach, wild swims and watersports adventures.

FINISTERRE Walker Hybrid Shorts


They say: Just as comfortable in the water as they are out of it, we’ve designed the Walker Shorts to be your go to companion for adventure and exploration. Built with a recycled nylon blend, they’re super lightweight and incredibly quick drying, making that mid-hike dip even more irresistible.

We say: These are simply brilliant. Other hybrids are not as light and comfortable as these. This style short is ideal for a day out dipping, walking and play on or near water. They don’t absorb loads of water or stick to your legs; they dry quick and even when a little damp didn’t rub or cause issue when walking.

SPEEDO 7cm Logo Brief Blue/Lilac


They say: Stylish in blue with a multi-coloured waistband trim, our 7cm Logo Brief has a laidback vibe and includes a retro-style plastisol Speedo logo to the rear. Our Eco EnduraBrite fabric offers higher chlorine resistance than standard swimwear fabrics, delivers superb colour performance and fits like new for longer with CREORA HighClo. Made in part from recycled plastic bottles – the polyester yarn in the fabric is made from 100% post-consumer waste.

We say: You can’t go wrong with a pair of classic Speedos. Offering slightly more coverage than their 5cm brief, these are a well-fitting pair of trunks – once you get the right size! We recommend going up a size (or two) than your usual (I wear a 32” trouser, 34” in most other trunks, but a size 36” in Speedos). The tie-dye waistband and matching lilac front and back logos and drawstring give these a retro vibe. I can see these being a staple of my summer swim wardrobe. Plus, points for eco fabrics.

AQUASPHERE Essential Boxer


They say: The Essential Boxer has been designed to guarantee long lasting comfort during swim training. Crafted with X-Play sustainable fabric, it allows high flexible fit guaranteeing greater range of motion. This training suit is made of 3 plastic bottles! 100% chlorine resistant, fully lined: long-lasting comfort and high flexibility.

We say: These have a lovely soft feel, yet still offer slick support. A great mid-way point between a jammer and brief they are excellent for pool swims, or outdoors. Aquasphere swimwear has always been a firm fav, they wear well over time and are a simple design. Largely used for pool swimming for the test but coped well in saltwater with no chaffing or discomfort. Great value and come in a range of seasonable colours.

USUAL OBJECTIONS Navy Blue Swim Briefs


They say: Launched in 2020, Usual Objections was started with a belief that everyone is capable of great things. Built from the ground up to be as sustainable and ethical as possible, everything is handmade using recycled fabrics and ethically and sustainably sourced materials in Hackney, East London – an area with a rich heritage of garment production.

We say: The quality of these briefs is outstanding. Fully lined and with a 7cm waistband they feel like a modern classic – a timeless brief with cool design features like the hot pink drawstring, discreet logo on the back and contrast internal seam stitching. They come with a matching drawstring bag that will also fit goggles, hat etc.

Last updated May 2024. All products were chosen independently by our editorial team. This review contains affiliate links and we may receive a commission for purchases made. Click here to subscribe to the magazine. Read more Outdoor Swimmer gear reviews.

Outdoor Swimmer is the magazine for outdoor swimmers by outdoor swimmers. We write about fabulous wild swimming locations, amazing swim challenges, swim training advice and swimming gear reviews.