It's something you may not have even thought about...ever. Admittedly, in all my years as a parent, this only recently showed up on my radar: what color bathing suit should you put your kids in, or should you pick for yourself, if you plan to spend time in the water this year?

Hybrid Images
Hybrid Images

Typically, when folks are picking swimsuits for themselves or their kids, they're usually thinking about what looks the best and what's most figure flattering. With so many cool colors and patterns, who could blame them?

But once you realize that some of those cute suits all but disappear underwater, you start to think more about function than fashion.


Why should visibility under water trump your desire to the latest in swimwear fashion? Well simply put, if you end up underwater and in trouble, if help can't see you, help can't get to you.

Swimwear Safety, Praire Lakes Healthcare System
Swimwear Safety, Praire Lakes Healthcare System

Alive Solutions Inc. has been providing water safety instruction and education for lifeguards and professional aquatics operators nationwide for years.

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They tested different color suits in different conditions: pools with white bottoms, pools with dark color bottoms, oceans, lakes and darker water.

They found out that the background and the water color can greatly affect how well you can see certain suits.

Swimming in Clear Waters

For instance, here's what they discovered when they put suits of different colors in 18" of open water, like a lake.

"**Top Colors were Neon Yellow / Green / Orange (still think bright and contrasting!)

**White came in fourth place, but appeared more to be a light reflection or clouds on the surface and wouldn’t stand out in a crowd…so personally wouldn’t be on our list as a top choice.

**Neon Pink did not perform well, like it did in the white bottom pool environment.

**All other colors disappeared so quickly. "

They said what they found just underscores the importance of floatation devices like lifejackets in open water, to keep people on top of the water and not underneath it.

A close up shot of a life guards red rescue tube floating in a pool.

They also say there's not replacement for an attentive guardian, who isn't distracted by technology, keeping a watchful eye on the water.

Mom and child enjoying the summerPlease see similar images in my portfolio:

So, if you're in the market for a new swimsuit, keep color in mind; but not just what flatters, but what stands out, so that you can stand out for obvious reasons!

Ryan McVay


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