Temperature and salinity shape the distribution and genetic structure of marine communities. Future warming and freshening will exert an additional stress to coastal marine systems. The extent to which organisms respond to these shifts will, however, be mediated by the tolerances of all life-stages and populations of species and their potential to adapt. We investigated nauplius and cypris larvae of the barnacle Balanus (Amphibalanus) improvisus from the Swedish west coast with respect to temperature (12, 20, and 28 °C) and salinity (5, 15, and 30) tolerances. Warming accelerated larval development and increased overall survival and subsequent settlement success. Nauplii developed and metamorphosed best at intermediate salinity. This was also observed in cypris larvae when the preceding nauplii stages had been reared at a salinity of 30. Direct comparisons of the present findings with those on a population from the more brackish Baltic Sea demonstrate contrasting patterns. We conclude that i) B. improvisus larvae within the Baltic region will be favoured by near-future seawater warming and freshening, that ii) salinity tolerances of larvae from the two different populations reflect salinities in their native habitats, but are nonetheless suboptimal and that iii) this species is generally highly plastic with regard to salinity.