Updated: Oct 26, 2021
After more than a decade of island life we know a thing or two about bikini’s. Here on Bonaire we live in them, and we want them to last as long as possible. But let’s face it, the sun, sand and sea take a toll on our favorite ‘kinis if not properly cared for. Check out our tips below to ensure your favorite swimwear lasts as long as possible.
1. Wash right away after each wear
We can’t say it enough. A quick rinse in the shower is not enough, especially on Bonaire! The salt will clutter in the seams and before you know it the color fades and the elasticity decreases. Almost every bikini or swimsuit contains lycra or spandex. Even if you don't go in the water, sand, sunscreen and your body's natural oils can still wear down your bikini because it reacts with the elastic fibers of the fabric. Making sure to wash your suit right away after every wear, this will ensure the fabric lasts longer. And yes, we do mean right away, don’t let the fabric dry first. If you can’t wash it right away, rinse it with sweet water and leave it wet. Than when you come home, wash it preferably with a detergent that is clear and gentle. Look for the unscented detergent or the detergent formulated for sensitive skin.
2. Hand Wash
Sure, we get it. You just came home from a full day of kiteboarding or chilling on a beach and you just want to get to your hammock right away. It's much easier to just toss your suit in the washing machine (we're all guilty of this) but trust us it's worth taking the time to hand wash! This is the key to preserving the integrity of the fabric.
Here's our formula for success...
Fill your sink or a bucket with cool water and rinse thoroughly
Refresh the water, add your bikini and a few drops of gentle detergent
Gently knead the soap into the fabric while soaking it
Lay flat to dry in a shaded area, avoid the sun at all times
3. Be Gentle
Avoid aggressively wringing out swim suits or drying them on rough surfaces as this will loosen or damage the fabric. There's nothing worse than saggy bikini bottom! After washing, gently rinse with fresh, cool water and lightly wring out your bikini. Then lay it flat to dry on a towel.
4. Don't Dry in Direct Sunlight
If you're drying your swimsuits outside, stay away from placing them in direct sunlight. Drying in the sun too long can cause damage to the fabric and the sun on Bonaire is famous for fading pretty much anything. If your car paint fades in the sun, imagine what it does to your bikini...
5. Dry flat on a towel
Hanging your 'kini' to dry could cause your suit to slightly misshapen. Lay it flat on a towel to preserve the silhouette and fit!
6. Avoid the heat
Never (we repeat, never ever) iron or throw you suits in the dryer! Too much heat will break down the delicate fabric over time and will have an effect on the color and silhouette of the suit. This also counts for leaving your swimwear in a hot car. We did it all and you feel the fabric getting a little harder and less elastic.