A quality wetsuit is a game-changer. Whether you're a surfer, snorkeler, or just want to swim in subpar weather, a premium wetsuit is a worthwhile investment for your swimming pleasure.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING A WETSUIT
Wetsuit Use Case - Surfing vs Swimming / Diving / Snorkeling
If you are into paddle sports, choose a wetsuit with back zip and smoothness in areas where your body will be making contact with a board. If you're snorkeling or swimming, you may not need a back zip and have an easier time getting in and out of a front zip model.
Wetsuit Seams Need to be Smooth and Strong
There's nothing more uncomfortable than having seams pressing or rubbing against your almost bare skin. Choose flatlock seams that lay flat for extra comfort. The best manufacturers will also use specialized flexible thread and materials to withstand salt and chlorine. Reinforced seams are also a must and will improve the longevity of your suit, especially in areas with a lot of pull such as the crotch. If you've ever gotten into a wetsuit, you know how much pull the ankles and wrists get too!
Snug Fit that Allows you to Move
While swimming, fit and comfort are king. Look for a snug fit that still allows you to move without allowing water in. Water will pool in areas with excess space and make you cold. Manufacturers produce garments with different measurements so you will have to try before you buy!
Traditional Neoprene vs. New Tech Fabrics for Wetsuits
Neoprene Foam: The Building Block
The heart and soul of wetsuit construction is neoprene foam. Thicker neoprene keeps you warm while thinner neoprene allows for better movement.
Types of Neoprene Wetsuit Materials
1. Nylon-Lined Neoprene: Comfort and Protection
Nylon-lined neoprene is the preferred choice for most wetsuits. Its nylon jersey lining not only makes it easy to put on and take off but also enhances its lifespan by preventing wear and tear. Surfers and divers appreciate the perfect blend of comfort and toughness.
2. Smooth Skin Neoprene: Enhanced Warmth
Smooth skin neoprene is designed to repel water and wind while harnessing the sun's warmth. It's particularly effective for cold-water wetsuits, especially in windy, sunny conditions, though it may be less durable.
3. Air Neoprene: The Premium Warmth Soluction
Air neoprene is the top-tier option for wetsuits. It features a middle layer that traps air for exceptional insulation without sacrificing flexibility. Ideal for staying warm in frigid waters without feeling bulky.
Yulex: A Sustainable Alternative
For environmentally-conscious surfers, Yulex is a game-changer. Patagonia introduced this plant-based neoprene alternative, delivering warmth and flexibility while reducing the carbon footprint. It's a significant step towards eco-friendly wetsuits without compromising performance.Here are our top best and most fashionable wetsuit recommendations!
O'Neill has been around since 1952 and has perfected the wetsuit. This is a front zip wetsuit for paddling comfort featuring strategic seam placement. It has all the bells and whistles including an external key pocket with a loop, ultra flexible and super reinforced flat-locked seams for durability and comfort, and Krypto knee pads.
We especially love these gorgeous prints!
This triple-layered Neoprene Amazon favorite boasts flat-locked seams for extra durability.
The asymmetrical zip and screen printed pattern are flattering to any body type.
For excellent value, warmth, style, and comfort, you can't beat this wetsuit. Customers rave about the comfort and quality for the price.
For the best of the best, turn to O'Neill, one of the world's premier manufacturers of surf and sports goods. The perfect suit for surfers with a back zip and seamless paddle zones for comfort. Proprietary Smoothskin fabric provides wind resistance and extra insulation.