Wetsuits come in all kinds of different shapes and sizes, made solely to keep you surfing for as long as possible.
Fullsuits will cover your entire body, except for your hands, feet and your head or neck. Fullsuits offer full protection from the sun's UV-radiation, which is very nice when you’re out there for hours. Don’t forget to put eco-friendly sun block on all parts exposed. Fullsuits mostly come in handy most time of year, but you really reap the benefits during Spring, Fall and Winter. Of course, you can also wear a fullsuit during Summer, but you’d might want to switch to a springsuit, shorty or even boardshorts. Fullsuits can be found in all kinds of neoprene thicknesses, but you’ll generally find them in 5/3mm, 4/3mm and 3/2mm.
Springsuits are a version of fullsuit with thinner neoprene panels. This still gives you the same protection against the sun, but allows for more freedom of movement because thinner panels are more stretchy. Let’s be honest, you don’t need the same wetsuit thickness in Spring, Summer and early Autumn. Springsuits usually come in 3/2mm, 2/2mm or a similar thickness of rubber. You can wear a springsuit between 13 to 18 degrees Celsius, but it all depends on you.
Shorties on the other hand have exposed arms, legs or a partial combination of both. When waters get warmer than 18 degrees Celsius, it might be a good idea to switch over to a shorty. And why shouldn’t you? The feeling of freedom while surfing with hardly wearing any neoprene is uncanny. Still, staying out in the sun for too long can be dangerous. A shorty still offers some protection against those harmful ultraviolet radiations.
Neoprene tops, vests, lycra’s and rash guards
Tops generally are just shirts made from thinner panels of neoprene or lycra. You can have these with long sleeves, short sleeves or sleeveless. Most of the time, tops only are 1mm or 2mm. They offer protection against the sun and prevent rash from rubbing your torso on the deck and wax of your board. They’re great for surfing in the tropics or other warmer waters. They’ll give you great freedom of movement with maximum protection from the sun. Pair them with some nice boardshorts and you’re good to go.