The traditional dress of Barbados is similar to other Caribbean islands as it is
heavily based on European styles as women tended to wear dresses and men wore simple
pants and shirts. All of this historic clothing tended to be loose-fitting (except
the top of some dresses) as it helped people remain cool in the hot weather. Unlike
many Caribbean islands though, the dress of Barbados was also strongly influenced
by Britain in the past and today.
Today the historic dress of the people of Barbados is uncommon except on some holidays.
Nearly everyone wears modern western-styled clothing today, but the people remain
a bit conservative so beachwear is not common anywhere besides the beach.
As a visitor to Barbados you are welcome to wear just about anything so long as
it is appropriate for the situation. When on beaches swimsuits are common and accepted,
but as soon as you leave the beach cover up, even if you're only dining in a
nearby restaurant or shopping nearby. Of course more formal settings require even
more formal dress as churches, nice restaurants, and business settings demand long
pants and shirts at a minimum.