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Rash Guards

Our rash guard collection combines UV protection with fashion-forward styles so you can look and feel your best while enjoying the summer sun. 


What is a rash guard?

A rash guard is a form-fitting athletic shirt that protects your skin from chafing, sunburns, and surfboard rash. It typically features long sleeves, but there are also short-sleeve rash guards for those who prefer more breathability and range of motion.

A rash guard gets its name from its ability to protect the body against rashes. The tight-fitting surf shirt helps prevent two common rashes that can occur in water sports and beach activities—surf rash and sun rash.

Surf rash is caused by friction and abrasion from surf wax, sand, and saltwater rubbing against the skin. Sun rash is an immunological reaction to UV exposure, that results in patches of red, raised bumps that are often painful and itchy. It can be a precursor for (or can accompany) sun poisoning.

With an extra layer of protection, rash guards prevent uncomfortable irritation. Every rash guard in our collection is made with UPF 50+ fabric that offers an extra level of protection against sun damage.

What is UPF?

Ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) is a rating system that measures a fabric's ability to block UV rays from reaching the skin. Ratings go from 15 to 50+, with higher numbers meaning greater protection.

Fabrics rated UPF 50+ block at least 98% of UV rays, while a 30 rating blocks around 96.7%. Dermatologists recommend choosing UPF 30 or higher for good sun protection.

All our sun-protective swimwear features UPF 50+ fabric—the maximum UV protection level a fabric can offer. The tight weave allows less than 2% of UV radiation to pass through, significantly reducing the risk of sunburn and skin damage.

Rash guards for the whole family

In our rash guard collection, you’ll find:

  1. Men’s rash guards
  2. Women’s rash guards
  3. Girls’ rash guards
  4. Boys’ rash guards

Men’s rash guards

Our men's rash guard collection has both short-sleeved and long-sleeved styles to suit your coverage needs. Short-sleeved rash guards balance skin protection and mobility for active water sports or casual beach days. 

Long-sleeve rash guard shirts provide full arm and torso protection, giving you peace of mind during outdoor activities.

Women’s rash guards

Our women's rash guard collection offers cropped and full-length options to cater to your style preferences and coverage needs. Cropped rash guards provide a trendy and sporty look, perfect for those who prefer more freedom, while full-length rash guards offer extended coverage for maximum protection.

Our women's rash guard collection offers a relaxed, comfortable fit—perfect for hitting the pool, going to the water park, or simply running errands. The long-sleeved designs keep you cool and covered throughout the day, with convenient thumb holes that provide extra sun protection for your hands.

We also have short-sleeved rash guards for women who prefer a cooler, more relaxed fit and want to let their arms show.

Our full-length rash guards have front pockets with zipper closures that offer a secure space for essentials, and the front zipper includes a guard to reduce rubbing and irritation. You'll enjoy comfortable wear all day in these rash guards.

Girls rash guards

Our girl's rash guard collection offers long-sleeved and short-sleeved styles that provide extra protection against UV radiation and skin irritation. For those warm days, our cropped rash guards allow more freedom of movement. This collection comes in a variety of colors and patterns, so your girl can pick and choose her favorites. 

Whether hitting the beach or playing outdoor sports, our rash guards give your girl the UV protection she needs without sacrificing style.

Boys rash guards

Kick the summer off in style with our boys rash guards, available in short and long sleeve styles for any occasion. These protective swim shirts are designed with your little guy's comfort and safety in mind. They sport cool designs and vibrant colors he'll love rocking all summer.

The snug yet comfortable fit and quick-drying fabric provide a full, unrestricted range of motion. Rash guards are perfect for active infants, toddlers, and any energetic kid who loves to explore and play. Get UPF 50+ sun protection and keep their skin safe from irritation while they do what boys do best, get dirty!

When to wear a rash guard?

Rash guards are great to wear anytime, anywhere. Here are some examples:

  • Surfing: rash guards are commonly worn when surfing to prevent abrasion from the surfboard wax and irritation from the sun and saltwater, helping avoid painful rashes.
  • Other water sports: for activities such as kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, kitesurfing, etc. the sun protection and abrasion resistance make rash guards a go-to choice.
  • Swimming outdoors: when swimming outside in the sun for extended periods, a rash guard provides needed UV protection to help avoid sunburns.
  • Snorkeling and diving: the tight fit allows freedom of movement while covering the skin from stings and abrasion. Bright colors aid visibility.
  • Sun protection: rash guards protect your skin from the sun so you can enjoy all of your favorite outdoor activities and avoid those nasty sunburns.
  • Workouts outdoors: the lightweight, breathable fabric keeps you cooler when exercising outside.
  • Sports activities: they are also commonly worn in grappling sports such as mixed martial arts (MMA), Brazilian jiu-jitsu, wrestling, and judo. The tight and durable material helps prevent mat burn and skin irritation from constant contact.
  • Around the house: rash guards allow gardeners, car washers, and outdoor chore doers to stay protected.

Rash guard vs. swim shirt

The terms “rash guard” and “swim shirt” are used interchangeably, and a rash guard is a type of swim shirt. We like to think of the terms as follows:

  • Rash guards offer rash protection during watersports and recreation. They guard the skin from abrasion and harmful UV rays.
  • Rash guards have form-fitting, quick-drying fabrics such as spandex and nylon blends that often have built-in UPF sun protection.
  • Swim shirts focus on modesty and coverage while swimming, with less emphasis on protective features.
  • Swim shirts may have looser fits made from lighter fabrics such as polyester that dry reasonably quickly but don't cling as tightly to the body.

Rash guards FAQ

Is a rash guard just a compression shirt?

A rash guard is not just a compression shirt. Rash guards utilize quick-drying, form-fitting fabrics with built-in UPF sun protection. They guard against rashes, sun exposure, and abrasion. Compression shirts lack these protective qualities.

Can you swim in a rash guard?

You can swim while wearing a rash guard. Their form-fitting, quick-drying construction makes rash guards good for active water use like swimming, surfing, and paddling.

Does a rash guard keep you warm in cold water?

Rash guards provide minimal warmth in cold water. A thin layer of water gets trapped between the snug fit and your skin, offering slight insulation. Thermal gear such as wetsuits work better for keeping warm in cold water.

Do rash guards shrink in the water?

Rash guards do not typically shrink in the water. Rash guards are made of stretchy, synthetic materials such as spandex and nylon that maintain their shape and fit even when wet. The close-fitting design of rash guards is meant to prevent them from billowing or riding up in the water and losing their form.

Do rash guards protect from jellyfish?

Rash guards can provide some protection against jellyfish stings. The tight-fitting, synthetic material of a rash guard creates a barrier between the skin and any jellyfish tentacles that may come into contact with the body. Rash guards are not a complete defense, and other protective measures may still be necessary in areas with high jellyfish activity.

Should rash guards be tight or loose?

Rash guards should be tight, form-fitting garments. The snug fit minimizes friction and fabric movement against the skin during water activities. Loose rash guards can't provide the same level of rash prevention, but depending on your preferences, a loose fit may be appropriate.

What does a woman wear under a rash guard?

Women typically wear a one-piece swimsuit, sports bra, or swimsuit top underneath a rash guard. The rash guard acts as an outer layer of coverage over regular swimwear or activewear.

What is the difference between a rash guard and a rash vest?

There is no difference between a rash guard and a rash vest— these terms are used interchangeably to refer to the same type of athletic shirt. Both "rash guard" and "rash vest" describe a close-fitting, synthetic shirt that protects the wearer's skin from abrasion, sun exposure, and other irritants.

Can rash guards be worn for activities besides water sports?

Rash guards make an excellent base layer for physical activities and an active lifestyle beyond just water sports. Their sun protection, moisture-wicking, and anti-microbial qualities make them popular for activities such as running, hiking, yoga, and more.

Are there different rash guard styles for chilly water conditions?

Some rash guard brands offer thicker, insulating versions for water sports enthusiasts in chilly water temperatures. These may use heavier fabrics or thermal linings to provide an extra layer of warmth without sacrificing flexibility and moisture-wicking.

How does rash guard sizing differ from a regular shirt?

Rash guards are meant to have a snug, compression fit that's tighter than a regular shirt. This just-right layer of compression provides muscle support and minimizes chafing. Rash guards tend to have a very fitted cut through the chest, arms, and torso.

Further reading

SPF 30 vs SPF 50: what is the difference?

What is the difference between SPF 50 and SPF 70?

What are the best bathing suits for women?

What is hi-vis swimwear?

How do I get rid of sunspots?

Sun poisoning vs sunburn