Jacob Osborn
16 Best Wetsuits for Surfing | Man of Many
As most surfers can tell you, the activity is prone to all sorts of variables. So too is any list of the best surfing wetsuits. Not only do different designs accommodate different temperatures and situations, but a few brands are eschewing materials like neoprene in favour of something more natural and sustainable (although trusty neoprene remains more or less ubiquitous).
How to Pick the Right Wetsuit
Surfing wetsuits are commonly distinguished by way of three separate factors: their zipper setup, the thickness of their material, and their stitching. Here are three different types of zipper setups:
How to Choose the Right Zipper Placement Type
Different temperatures call for different levels of thickness, most commonly measured in mm. When you see two or even three numbers in the overall measurement, those numbers go from the core layer outward. Here’s a general outline:
How to Choose the Right Thickness
If you want to keep the water out and the heat in, get to know your stitching. Here’s a breakdown:
How to Choose the Right Stitching Type
These are the best wetsuits for surfing in all conditions.
Best Wetsuits for Surfing in All Conditions
The team at Flatrock are quickly building a reputation for designing the comfiest surfing wetsuits in the industry. The Sarvo 3x2mm is hand cut from 18 panels of the finest Japanese neoprene giving it an almost tailor-made feel to it. It’s super soft and warm and comes with the peace of mind of a lifetime warranty on all stitching and zippers.
1. Flatrock Sarvo Steamer
Often touted as some of the best wetsuits for surfing, O’Neill’s Hyperfreak line delivers an impeccable tier of warmth and stretchability. As with other entries in the range, this one combines hydrophobic super-stretch TB3 neoprene with fully taped seams to ensure maximum warmth, strength and durability.
2. O’Neill Hyperfreak Steamer
With the expert guidance of an award-winning Sydney-based industrial design firm, Flatrock designed the Bronte Series 1.5mm Wetsuit Top. The extra stretch in the neoprene makes paddling for waves a breeze.
3. Flatrock Bronte Wetsuit Top
At A$699.99, this wetsuit is on the pricier side, but you definitely get what you pay for. This is one of the best surfing wetsuits, period. Welcome to the top shelf, gentlemen.
4. Rip Curl Flashbomb Heat Seeker Chest Zip E6 Steamer
Lightweight by design and quick to dry, this surfing wetsuit from Quiksilver strikes the perfect balance between quality and affordability. If you want to cover the basics with efficiency and style, look no further.
5. Quiksilver Capsule Everyday Sessions Chest Zip
Xcel is beloved by surfers worldwide and with good reason, as the brand warms you up without weighing you down. Crafted from Japanese limestone nanoprene (aka neoprene), Drylock X features Celliant black inner lining, extra protection on the wrists, ankles, and collar, and a waterproof chest zipper with a magnetic seal.
6. Xcel Comp X Short Sleeve
If you want true bang for your buck, check out Need Essentials, which packs a bevy of choice features into all of its wetsuits. That includes 80% Rapid-dry thermal lining, sealed cuffs, and the highest grade of 4-way stretch neoprene. The blind stitched seams are both glued and taped and the cuffs are sealed. At US$222.99, this is easily one of the best value wetsuits for surfing.
7. Need Essentials Ultra Premium
Thanks to the best winter and cold-water wetsuits for surfing, frigid temperatures won’t get between you and those gnarly waves!
Best Wetsuits for Surfing in Colder Conditions
Offering peace of mind and body alike, this cold water wetsuit by Finisterre is made from sustainable materials such as Yulex Pure natural rubber and recycled laminates. Double-needle blind stitching and fully taped seams keep the water out while an elongated back panel improves heat retention. You might struggle a bit (or require assistance) when putting this wetsuit on or taking it off, but in return, you get supreme warmth and a perfect fit.
8. Finisterre Nieuwland Yulex 4mm
This high-performance wetsuit is fast to dry and 25% stretchier and lighter than the previous model. Plus, it comes from Rip Curl. If you have the cash to spare, grab a Flashbomb and be done with it.
9. Rip Curl Flashbomb Heat Seeker E6 Chest Zip Steamer
O’Neill’s top-selling silhouette culls from the best of all worlds. Streamlined and superior, it pairs high-grade neoprene with watertight stitchless technology and super seal cuffs. If you’re seeking one of the best cold-water wetsuits for surfing, it’s a no-brainer.
10. O’Neill Hyperfreak Steamer
Rip Curl is one of the best names in the game and Flashbomb is their best range, which is why we’ve included it no less than three times. This zip-free wetsuit is bolstered by Flex Energy lining, liquid mesh panels, and so much more. It will cost you, but it’s worth every penny.
11. Rip Curl E-Bomb Zip Free Steamer
One of the best value wetsuits for surfing, Hurley’s Advantage Plus features double-glued, blind stitched seams for a smooth feel. That’s joined by a lightweight and less absorbent kneepads and a discreet external key pocket on the lower leg, amongst other things.
12. Hurley Advantage Plus
Built like a furnace with the name to show for it, this premium wetsuit features welded seams and an adjoining hood. To put it in the simplest of terms: when the water is cold (about 45-55F), you stay mobile and warm.
13. Billabong Furnace Comp Hooded Chest Zip Fullsuit
With its infrared honeycomb insulation, Evo-dry exterior, super-stretch neoprone, and other choice specs, the Red Cell easily ranks amongst the best winter wetsuits for surfing. It’s a smooth and durable operator, to say the least.
14. Body Glove Red Cell Chest Zip Fullsuit
The wetsuits from Patagonia have a reputation for being overpriced and a little uncomfortable, but they’re also eco-friendly. In lieu of neoprene, this silhouette employs a blend of 85% Yulex natural rubber and 15% synthetic rubber. It’s also Fair Trade Certified sewn.
15. Patagonia R3 Yulex Full Suit
With back zip entry this wetsuit is super easy to get in and out of. Vissla’s 7 Seas Surfing Wetsuit is constructed from limestone neoprene and loaded with high-performance features. Glideskin on the neck and liquid tape cuffs reduce flushing while Brain Fuzz lining traps heat and drys quickly. Stretchy and comfortable, the wetsuit is further distinguished by its unbeatable price point.
16. Vissla 7 Seas Back Zip Full Suit
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