7 Thong Bikinis That Prove Less Is Definitely More

The thongkini trend puts assets and confidence on full display.
SI Staff

Although it’s been a staple in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue for eons, thongkinis have taken beaches by storm this year. Less is most definitely more with the return of this trend in swimsuits. Kim Kardashian and all of her sisters—Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian as well as Kendall and Kylie Jenner—have continually put their assets on full display in this revealing look. Many others like Dua Lipa, Sydney Sweeney, Emily Ratajkowski and Bella Hadid have also been photographed in these bathing suits.

First introduced in the 1970s by Rudi Gernreich, the thongkini became a runway staple in the ’80s and ’90s. Helena Christensen and Beverly Johnson made an impact on the Chanel ’95 spring runway wearing the style. Since then, across Europe and South America (hello, the Brazilian cut!) swimwear has always been teeny-tiny, whereas much of the culture in the U.S. was to cover up and wear less revealing bottoms.

The movement has finally gone mainstream and is now accepted, which means it’s time to embrace what your mama gave ya and not be shy in baring more than usual with confidence. High-cut and full coverage in the front leads to a barely-there thong in the back for optimal tanning.

Pair with any kind of bikini top from triangle, bandeau or one with more coverage, and you will be set for the beach or pool. Shop some of our favorite thongkinis below.

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SKIMS Swim Thong, $36 (skims.com)

SKIMS
SKIMS

The best part about this minimal coverage bottom is that it’s available in a number of limited edition and classic shades. Plus, it can be paired with a number of the brand’s bikini tops to suit your personal style.

BANANHOT St Tropez Bottom, $130 (bananhotbikinis.com)

Brooks Nader
Brooks Nader was photographed by James Macari in the Dominican Republic. Swimsuit by BANANHOT. Earrings by Cult Gaia. / James Macari/Sports Illustrated

This 2023 SI Swimsuit photo shoot pick worn by cover girl Brooks Nader currently comes in six different colors and prints. Complete the look with the St Tropez Top ($130).

Gonza Amor Ruched Bottom, $30 (shopgonza.com)

Gonza
Katie Austin was photographed by James Macari in the Dominican Republic. Swimsuit by Gonza. / James Macari/Sports Illustrated

Just like Katie Austin on the SI Swimsuit set in the Dominican Republic, rock this Barbiecore hot pink look under the palms. Accompany the bottoms with the Amor Bralette Top ($40) to get the fitness content creator’s whole look.

Entire Studios Thong Bikini, $40 (entirestudios.com)

entire studio
Olivia Dunne was photographed by Ben Watts in Puerto Rico. Swimsuit by Entire Studios. / Ben Watts/Sports Illustrated

Show some skin in this unique choice, which Olivia Dunne rocked for the 2023 SI Swimsuit Issue, complete with side cut-outs and puff straps. Style with the Entire Studios Bikini Bra ($50) to complete the look. 

Love You More Swim Bottom 3, $71 (lymswim.com)

Love You More Swim
Marquita Pring was photographed by Ben Watts in Puerto Rico. Swimsuit by Love You More Swim. Earrings by Jennifer Meyer. / Ben Watts/Sports Illustrated

Like Marquita Pring in the 2023 SI Swimsuit Issue, rock this string tie bikini bottom in one of three bright, stunning patterns. For the entire look, purchase the Top 3 ($86) as well.

SIE Swim Liv Bikini Bottom, $40 (sieswim.com)

SIE Swim
SIE Swim

This black-and-white stringy bikini bottom presents the perfect opportunity to even out your tan. Pair with the Elsa Bikini Top ($50) to round out the look.

Bain de Minuit Swim Bianca Bottom, €80 (baindeminuitswim.com)

Bain de Minuit Swim
Olivia Ponton was photographed by Amanda Pratt in Dominica. Swimsuit by Bain de Minuit Swim. Bracelets by Spinelli Kilcollin and Eklexic Jewelry. Ring by Spinelli Kilcollin. / Amanda Pratt/Sports Illustrated

Don this sparkly number that Olivia Ponton wore on the set of her 2023 SI Swimsuit photoshoot in Dominica. Add the Bianca Top (€85) to rock the whole fit.


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Alisandra Puliti

ALISANDRA PULITI

Alisandra Puliti is a NYC-based entertainment journalist with over 15 years of experience. Before joining the SI Swimsuit team as a contributing editor, the Penn State alum held several positions at HELLO! and HOLA! Media, Us Weekly and OK! Magazine. Throughout her tenure, she has been a fixture at events such as the Golden Globes to the Cannes Film Festival and has interviewed the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Taylor Swift, Eva Longoria, Jay-Z and more of Hollywood’s elite. A self-professed ‘social homebody,’ when she isn’t home binge-watching the newest streaming series or perfecting pasta dishes, her constant wanderlust has her packing her bags and heading out for a new adventure –most likely back to Italy!