The Ultimate Guide to Full Wetsuits: Unveiling the Secrets of Second Skin in the Water

Full wetsuits, known as “steamer suits,” are a vital piece of gear for water enthusiasts. Designed to be a second skin, these suits provide the ideal combination of protection, warmth, and mobility in aquatic adventures. Crafted from neoprene, a synthetic rubber material celebrated for its insulating properties, full wetsuits are essential for a variety of water activities such as surfing, diving, snorkelling, and open-water swimming. They enable individuals to explore underwater worlds comfortably and with style.

The primary material used in full wetsuits is neoprene. Neoprene’s closed-cell structure is a key feature, as it traps a thin layer of water between the suit and the body. This water layer acts as an insulator, retaining warmth generated by the body in cold waters. The thickness of neoprene can vary, typically ranging from 3mm to 6mm, depending on the intended use and water temperature. Vissla full wetsuits come equipped with a zipper, which is essential for easy entry and exit. The position of the zipper can vary, with back zippers being the most common. Back zippers are easy to use and are suitable for most water activities.

The fit of a full wetsuit is a critical consideration. A well-fitted wetsuit should be snug but not excessively tight, allowing for maximum flexibility and insulation. Full wetsuits come in various sizes and styles to accommodate different body shapes and preferences. To ensure a proper fit, it’s advisable to consult the manufacturer’s sizing chart and try on the wetsuit before making a purchase.

Seam construction significantly influences the durability and performance of a full wetsuit. Wetsuits can feature various seam types, including flatlock, glued and blind stitched (GBS), and sealed and taped (Glide Skin) seams. The choice of seam construction depends on the intended water activity and conditions.

Wetsuit thickness is a key factor when selecting a full wetsuit. The thickness directly impacts the suit’s insulation properties and comfort. Full wetsuits are measured in millimetres, with two numbers indicating the thickness of the neoprene. The first number represents the thickness in the torso area, while the second number indicates the thickness in the limbs. Choosing the appropriate thickness depends on the water temperature and the duration of your activities.

The design and features of a full wetsuit can vary. Some wetsuits are tailored for specific activities and conditions. For example, surfers might opt for wetsuits with extra flexibility, while divers may prioritize suits with enhanced insulation. Some full wetsuits also incorporate features such as hoods, built-in boots, or additional padding for added comfort and protection.

Taking proper care of your full wetsuit is essential to extend its lifespan. After each use, rinse the wetsuit with fresh water to remove salt, sand, and debris. Hang it to dry away from direct sunlight and heat sources, as excessive heat can damage the neoprene. Avoid folding the wetsuit, as creases can affect its performance. Regularly inspect the wetsuit for tears or damage and address them promptly to prevent further deterioration.

Quality is a key consideration when choosing a full wetsuit. Established brands with a reputation for producing high-quality wetsuits often invest in research and development to create suits that offer superior performance and comfort. It’s advisable to read reviews and seek recommendations to select a brand that aligns with your specific water sports activities and expectations.

Louisa Hollis
the authorLouisa Hollis