Types of Necklines: Swimsuit Edition

Swimsuits these days come in all shapes, sizes, and designs. Amongst all the perfect swimsuit top variables, perhaps none is as significant as its neckline. Round, sharp, angular, broad, deep –– there are countless variations. If you find yourself looking in the mirror and considering the shape of a swim top, it’s safe to say that its neckline is an essential factor.

While personal taste and preferences play a big role, certain necklines can enhance certain body types over others. The type of neckline a swimsuit has influences the suit’s overall effect: what it highlights, what it covers up, and what sort of flair it adds to the look.

If you’re interested in learning more about all the different, beautiful types of swimsuit necklines –– and what they bring to the table –– read on for your own little handy guide.

Scoop Neck

What Is a Scoop Neck?

A scoop neck is a rounded neckline that forms a U shape around the chest. It‘s not to be confused with the higher sitting jewel neckline.

A scoop is one of the most common necklines. You can frequently find scoop necks in T-shirts. Scoop necks provide moderate coverage and can vary in depth.

Why Should You Wear a Scoop Neck Swimsuit?

Scoop necks are known to be universally flattering. They are not particularly wide or narrow, providing a classic shape that works for all body types. A scoop neck is a great way to show off the collarbone and decolletage area. Scoop neck swimsuits also frequently feature a similarly scooped back.

Bandeau Neckline

What Is a Bandeau Neckline?

Often found in blouson or sarong-style swimsuits, a bandeau neckline sweeps a straight line above the bust, just like a bandeau top would. Bandeau-type swimsuits are notable for their lack of straps, though you can often expect them to come with removable, optional straps. The straight nature of the neckline ensures that the top stays in place above the bust. 

Why Should You Wear a Bandeau Neckline Swimsuit?

Bandeau necklines are always practical when it comes to getting an even tan. 

While anyone can wear a bandeau neck, the straight, broad cut suits those with slender torsos. Women with pear-shaped figures (when the hips are wider than the shoulders), for example, can benefit from this. Because a bandeau neckline emphasizes and elongates the shoulders, it can help achieve a more balanced look.

Sweetheart Neckline

What Is a Sweetheart Neckline?

A sweetheart neckline mimics the shape of a heart. Straight lines come down from the shoulders, curve over the top of the breasts, and merge in the center of the bust in a tiny V. A shallower version of this is called a semi-sweetheart neckline. 

Popular in the 1950s for being feminine yet structured, now these are commonly found in conjunction with molded cups and underwire.

Why Should You Wear a Sweetheart Neckline Swimsuit?

Sweetheart necklines are known to be particularly feminine and chic. They can emphasize or create the illusion of curves. The slight dip in the center of the bust can help achieve a rounded shape without revealing too much cleavage. The straight straps balance out the roundness with a sense of structure.


What Is a V-Neck?

Aside from the scoop neck, the V-neck is perhaps one of the most easily recognizable neckline styles. Simply put, the straps of the swimsuit descend diagonally from the shoulders to the center of the bust, forming a V. A V-neck can also refer to a halter top swimsuit. In this case, the straps of the swimsuit connect around the neck. 

Why Should You Wear a V-Neck Swimsuit?

Much like the scoop neck, V-necks are suitable for all body types. They are especially flattering on those with broader features –– such as with wider shoulders, large busts, or shorter torsos. 

The downward point of the V-neck visually elongates the torso allowing it to appear more slender. Halter tops can also bring attention to elegant shoulders. 

Though with this neckline, you should be sure to apply ample sunscreen.

High Neck

What Is a High Neck?

A high neckline is exactly what it sounds like. On a swimsuit, a high neckline generally reaches the collarbone area. It features straps or ties that connect behind the neck for an elevated halter-type look. In some cases, high necklines can even refer to a turtleneck or mock-neck swimsuit top, like a rash guard.

Why Should You Wear a High Neck Swimsuit?

A high-neck swimsuit is a chic, athletic option that provides a high level of coverage. The extra fabric across the chest can help achieve modesty and protect you from a sunburn. High-necks tend to look trendy and practical at the same time. 

Keyhole Neckline

What Is a Keyhole Neckline?

Though it can come in a few different forms, a keyhole neckline is generally found on a high neck. What makes it a keyhole neckline is a small teardrop-shaped hole or cutout in the center of the chest.

Why Should You Wear a Keyhole Neckline Swimsuit?

Keyhole necklines are a wonderful way to add subtle embellishment to a swimsuit. For those with small busts or wide shoulders, a keyhole neckline can add extra interest and break up the monotony of the chest area. A keyhole can be a flirty way to show just a bit of skin in an otherwise modest swimsuit.

In Conclusion

A thoughtfully tailored neckline is a key element of any good swimsuit. A neckline's size, slope, and shape of a neckline ultimately affect the overall silhouette. For example, broader necklines pull attention to an elegant collarbone, while slimmer necklines highlight beautifully tanned shoulders. Plunging necklines pull the eye to the chest, while high necklines keep the focus on the face.

So, when you’re choosing your new swimsuit, make sure to consider the neckline. And remember: you can always count on cutouts and neckline embellishments to add new levels of interest to a look! 


Sunscreen and Your Morning Routine | Johns Hopkins Medicine

Sunburn | The Skin Cancer Foundation

A History of Women's Swimwear | Fashion History