Guide: Finding A Summer Wetsuit For You.
With the weather beginning to warm up, it’s time to start the hunt for a summer wetsuit. Here at Wake2o, we have what you need to make the most out of the sea this summer. With a variety of summer suits, different technologies, shorties and full suits, as well as prices. So, we can be sure to find a wetsuit perfect for you.
The fit of your wetsuit is very important as the purpose of a wetsuit is to keep you warm whilst you are in the water by trapping a thin layer of water between your body and the neoprene. This water is heated up by your body temperature. It is important that your wetsuit is a tight fit otherwise, it will let the water you’ve warmed up out and let new cold water in.
Shorty Or Full Suit?
A shorty wetsuit is short arms and short legs, or can be a combination of either long arms and short legs or short arms and long legs. Shorty suits offer some warmth when in the sea but aren’t too warm when chilling on the beach.
A full suit provides more warmth as your arms and legs are covered and keeps you warmer for a longer period of time. They also give you protection on your knees which is perfect of if you’re surfing.
We often get asked “What thickness do I need?” when someone is hunting for a new wetsuit. There are various different thicknesses for wetsuits ranging from 1mm all the way up to 6mm.
Typically the thickness of a summer wetsuit is 3/2mm. This means 3mm on the torso and 2mm legs and arms. So, the first number tends to be the highest which is thickness around the chest and back . This is to keep your vital organs warm. The lower and second number is the neoprene thickness around your arms and legs allowing you more flexibility. However, everyone is different some people feel the cold more than others, so what thickness feels best for you is perfect.
Below is our guide for wetsuit thickness depending on water temperature.
In the UK, between June – October a 3mm suit is perfect. If you feel the cold a 4mm might suit you better and is a good medium between the thicknesses.
Depending on what activities you’re doing a thicker wetsuit may be better. For example if you’re doing water sports that may have wind chill such as; kitesurfing, sailing or windsurfing. Then a thicker wetsuit may be more ideal to help keep you warm from wind chill.
Seams And Stitching
The way your wetsuit is stitched makes a massive difference on how it performs. The stitching can affect the durability, performance and the price of your suit. Seams can be a key point of weakness and they can be the cause of letting in water and leading you to become cold. We will talk you through each style of stitching.
This is the most simple way of stitching neoprene, similar to the way your clothing is stitched. The way it is done is the two sections are folded inwards and then stitched together. This results in a loss of flexibility and a bulge under your wetsuit which can lead to rubbing. You will only find this method of stitching in low end suits or summer suits.
Flatlock stitching is where one panel of neoprene is layered over the other and the stitching goes through both pieces. This creates a durable and flexible seam. Due to the amount of holes that this style of stitching causes, therefore, it is mainly used on summer suit.
This method of stitching is perfect for the colder waters. Blind stitching is when the panels are glued together and then stitched on the inside of the suit. However, the stitching doesn’t go all the way through the suit, this results in a fully water tight seam and lots of flexibility. This form of stitching makes the wetsuit very strong too. You will often see the seam referred to as GBS or Glued Blind Stitched.
Similar to GBS stitching, the neoprene panels have been glued together before being stitched, making them waterproof and super strong.
Some wetsuits have taped seams, this is where on the inside of the seams, tape is applied to strengthen where necessary. Some have strategic taping, which is where seams have been reinforced with tape in areas which go under the most stress. Fully taped means all seams have been reinforced.
this is when liquid rubber is put onto the seams making them completely watertight. Some brand have this on the inside and outside.