Is 20" the Perfect Length for a Boardshort? - Stab Mag
Photos by Zak Bush

Is 20″ the Perfect Length for a Boardshort?

We look to the Mountain and the Wave for Quiksilver’s answer to the seminal question of what makes a boardshort ‘best’.

style // Apr 21, 2023
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Don’t let the throwback appearance of these boardies fool you; once you get them in the water, you can feel the evolution of boardhshort technology against your skin. Think ’90s aesthetic without the archaic construction of the era.

Product: Quiksilver Surfsilk 99 20″ Boardshort

Price: $59

From their outward appearance, including significant paneling and abundant seam details, you’d think Quiksilver’s latest core-froward surf apparel style would wear clunky. Throwback details, from the contrast seams to the bubbly logo design, aptly suit the late ’90s aesthetic (which, due to the materials and construction of the time, often resulted in regular d*ck rash occurrences throughout the turn of the century). Even the product description pushes all our nostalgia buttons.

Fortunately, thanks to a few decades of tech advancements, that scourge couldn’t be further from the reality with the Surfsilk 99. A buttery feel with ample stretch and some weight to it (the best kind) leaves you feeling protected and decidedly un-chaffed.

Featuring a calculated combination of structural integrity and softness, there’s no question why the Quik team guys are running these for every session as of late. Also, 20″ might be the perfect length for a boardshort, hitting right where you want it while saving you from any extra fabric that could get caught around the knees.


  • Made from Quik’s proprietary SURFSILK fabric, these are durable on the exterior and comfortable on the interior.
  • 4-way stretch elastane blend fabric means flexibility for you and fewer plastic bottles for the ocean.
  • The shrewdly cut “performance” fit ensures that nothing will get in your way when you’re getting down to business.
  • A plant-based hydrophobic (read: quick-dry) coating is made from USDA-certified plant seed oils, which keep harmful chemicals out of the ocean

Verdict: With the fashion cycle returning to the late ’90s, the added luxury of modern comfort and sustainability found here makes for a winning combination. Judges approve.

See the rest of Stab’s Best Boardshorts & Swimwear of 2023, here.

Note: Garrett is 6’0, 170 lb., wearing size 32.


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