Wetsuit Glossary

Welcome to the SRFACE wetsuit glossary. Our glossary provides brief definitions and explanations of wetsuit related terms used on the website. If you cannot find the term you are looking for, please email us so that we can consider adding it to the glossary. All wetsuit terms explained, and every wetsuit question answered.

A

Abrasion resistant knee pads

Abrasian resistant knee pads protect your knees when duck diving. The strong material used for the knee pads also protects the wetsuit in this area from wearing out. The outside lining is abrasion resistant and the neoprene foam inside the knee pad has a high impact and compression rating to protect your knees from impact.

Ankle straps

Ankle straps are sometimes used in addition to your wetsuit to prevent water from entering at your ankles. Preferred by kite- and wind surfers who surf at high speeds.

Aqua-𝛂 (aqua-alpha)

Aqua-𝛂 (aqua-alpha) is an extremely strong water based, non toxic and solvent free lamnation glue which is used to laminate both inside and outside lining to the neoprene foam on some high end wetsuits.

B

Back panel

The back panel of a wetsuit connects different parts of the wetsuit and plays an important role in the fit of the wetsuit. It is also a panel where extra insulation is sometimes preferred.

Back zip

Back zip wetsuits are becoming more and more uncommon these days. The back zip makes it easy to take your wetsuit on and off but scores lower on insulation and fit.

Bioprene

Bioprene is a type of CR neoprene made by using the calcium in sea shells as main ingredient instead of oil or limestone.

Blind stitched

A blind stitch is a sewing method of joining two pieces of neoprene so that the stitch thread is invisible, or nearly invisible. A blind stitch is one of the strongest seam stitches available in wetsuit manufacturing. Usually a blind stitch is enforced with glue. Hence the abbreviation GBS: Glued and blind stitched.

Booties

Wetsuit boots, or booties are worn in cold water. Wetsuits boots are usually made from neoprene. Some high-end wetsuit boots feature plush inside lining and liquid rubber seals.

Buying a wetsuit

The way you purchase a wetsuit. The traditional way, in a surf shop after trying on a variety of brands and models, or the modern way, online by using a size chart or digital size finder and customer support to advise you what on size to buy.

Brand Converter

The Brand Converter is an online tool developed by SRFACE to convert your current wetsuit brand and size to a SRFACE wetsuit size.

C

Changing mat

A wetsuit changing mat is a bag that zips down or folds flat into a circle to put on the floor so you have a clean surface to change into or out of your wetsuit. Often these mats can be used as a bag to store your wetsuit in your car to prevent making a sandy mess in your car or water leaking out.

Chest panel

The chest panel is one of the most important panels of a wetsuit. If plays a very important role in wetsuit fit and core insulation. Nowadays you see a lot of wetsuits with a combined chest and front leg panel. Although it might look cool, the fit and insulation qualities drop drastically.

Chest size

Chest circumference or chest size is one of the most important measurements to determine your wetsuit size. To find the right size wetsuit, measure around the widest part of your chest, just under your armpits at the nipple line. Your measurements might be influenced by breathing in and out. To correct this use the average of a full inhale and a full exhale.

Chest zip

Chest zip wetsuits have slowly become the new standard in wetsuit design. A chest zip allows for a better fit, better insulation and less material yield. With today’s flexible neoprene it has also become easier to take your chest zip wetsuit on and off. A zip on the front of your wetsuit is shorter than a zip on the back. A zip is the only part of the wetsuit that isn’t flexible, so the shorter the zip, the more flexible the wetsuit. But, shorter zips might make it harder to get in and out of your wetsuit.

CR neoprene (Chloroprene Rubber neoprene)

Chloroprene rubber, CR or Polychloroprene is commonly known in the wetsuit industry as CR neoprene. Neoprene is a synthetic rubber produced by polymerization of chloroprene. It is an artificially made polymer acting as an elastomer. It has similar characteristics to natural rubber, but is far easier to produce on a larger scale. Chloroprene rubber exhibits good chemical stability, and maintains flexibility over a wide temperature range. We know neoprene as the main ingredient of wetsuits, but in different grades it can also be used in products such as laptop sleeves, orthopedic braces, electrical insulation, liquid and sheet applied elastomeric membranes and in the automotive industry in products such as fan belts. CR neoprene can be made out of oil, which is harmful for the environment. Instead, some manufacturers use a more high-end type of CR rubber foam that is limestone based instead of oil based. This has far less impact on the environment.

D

Diving wetsuit

A wetsuit used for diving. These are different and often thicker and stiffer than surface waterport wetsuits such as surfing wetsuits. A diving wetsuit can be a drysuit or wetsuit, or even a shorty for warm waters. Diving wetsuits need to be certified to qualify as a safe diving wetsuit. Surfing wetsuits don’t require these strict rules and qualifications.

Dope dye

Dope dye is an energy saving and environmentally friendly fabric dyeing process used to colour the outside and inside nylon or polyester lining on wetsuits. Usually fabric is knitted first, then dyed into the colour needed afterwards, which causes more pollution. Doped dyed yarns are created by adding masterbatch colorant to the polymer melt in spinning before the knitting process to save water, energy and polluted rinsing water. The colour is deeper and fades less too.

Double glued

Double glueing is a wetsuit glueing technique used to glue different wetsuit panel pieces together. Often used in combination with blind stitching.

Double lined neoprene

Double lined neoprene, or double nylon neoprene is neoprene which is laminated with a flexible lining on two sides. After the neoprene foam has been sliced into sheets of the right thickness, it’s laminated with a stretchy fabric layer on the outside and inside of the wetsuit. This makes wetsuits more durable and protects it against outside influences like UV and ozone. Double lining also offers protection from fingernails cutting through the fabric when pulling on the wetsuit and sitting on the wax of your surfboard. The inside of most wetsuits is lined with an extremely flexible and soft lining that is comfortable to wear on the skin.

Drain hole

A wetsuit drain hole is a small hole placed strategically on your wetsuit to allow for water to exit your wetsuit. Some wetsuits feature a drain hole in the shoulder area or on the ankles.

Drysuit

A drysuit is different to a wetsuit. Drysuits are usually made from a thin waterproof fabric instead of neoprene. Drysuits feature a very tight latex neck, arm and leg steal to prevent water from entering. Drysuits use a waterproof zip to prevent water entering your suit. Drysuits are pressure tested at the factory before they are sold as 100% drysuits. You can wear undergarment inside the suit, such as a fleece jersey, to stay warm. Drysuits are usually used for diving, kiteboarding, sailing and kayaking, but they are too bulky and restrictive to be used used for surfing.

E

Eco carbon black

Eco carbon black is one of the key ingredients used to produce neoprene and can be pyrolyzed from scrap rubber tires. This significantly reduces energy consumption and CO2 emission.

Eco friendly neoprene

There are different types of eco friendly neoprene available. The invention of limestone neoprene made a big impact on wetsuit manufacturing, which transformed the high-end wetsuit industry to become more durable and environmentally friendly. Some companies have different names for their more environmentally friendly neoprene. You might have heard of Japanese Yamamoto neoprene, which is used in some high-end wetsuits models. Other versions of limestone neoprene are Bioprene and Geoprene wetsuits. Yulex is another alternative neoprene made out of natural rubber which unfortunately has limited availability. Some brands have chosen to manufacture with limestone neoprene, which has the lowest carbon footprint in modern neoprene production. The use of limestone neoprene is an effort to make wetsuits as sustainable as possible.

Elongation

Elongation is the percentage of stretch of neoprene raw foam. It is measured before the lining is laminated onto the foam. The more flexible the foam, the higher the elongation percentage. Less flexible and stiffer foam has about 150-200% elongation. Soft and very flexible foam sits around the 350~400% mark.

F

Flatlock stitching

Flatlock stitching is a wetsuit stitching technique used mainly on warm water summer wetsuits, such a shorties or other wetsuits under 2.5mm thickness. A flatlock seam is not glued and not waterproof. During manufacturing the sewing machine needle penetrates both overlapping neoprene panels at the seam to create the most affordable seam construction used in wetsuits. Flatlock stitching cannot be used in winter wetsuits, as it lets water through and won’t protect against cold.

Flexibility

Flexibility is the amount of stretch in a wetsuit. A more flexible wetsuit often fits better than a stiffer wetsuit. More flexibility gives more comfort and less restriction when paddling. High flexibility can be achieved by using a flexible neoprene foam, inside and outside lining. Strategic seam placement will also allow for more stretch in a wetsuit.

Front zip

The front zip, or chest zip, has slowly become the new standard in wetsuit design. A chest zip allows for a better fit, better insulation and less material yield. With today’s flexible neoprene it has also become easier to take your chest zip wetsuit on and off. A zip on the front of your suit is shorter than a zip on the back. A zip is the only part of the wetsuit that isn’t flexible, so the shorter the zip, the more flexible the wetsuit, but shorter zips might make it harder to get into it.

Full suit

A full suit is a wetsuit with arms and legs reaching to the wrists and ankles.

G

GBS (Glued and Blind Stitched)

GBS seams, or glued and blind stitched seams, are a type of wetsuit seam which prevents water entering your wetsuit. GBS seams are constructed by first gluing the edges of the neoprene panels together to prevent water entering the wetsuit. Thereafter, the seams are blind stitched together on one or both sides of the neoprene panels, depending on the neoprene thickness and construction. Blind stitching offers additional strength: The needle doesn’t penetrate the neoprene completely, but only stitches through half of the neoprene panel to prevent leakage. More high-end GBS seams can be covered with a liquid neoprene seal on the outside and/or neoprene taping on the inside for extra seam reinforcement.

Geoprene

Geoprene is a type of limestone neoprene developed by the Japanese company Yamamoto.

Glideskin

Glideskin is a type of single lined neoprene. It is similar to smoothskin, but it’s a bit more slippery. On surfing wetsuits glideskin can be used on chest and back panels to protect against windchill. This means your sessions will last longer with insulation where you need it most. Glideskin is also commonly used on triathlon wetsuits. Glideskin is flexible but can be more fragile than double lined neoprene.

H

High-end wetsuit

Wetsuits come in different price and performance categories. High-end wetsuits are referred to as the best wetsuits in the market, featuring high-end materials and techniques.

Hood

A hood is a neoprene product which covers your head and protects it against the cold. They can be sold as separate hoods to add to your winter wetsuit. Hoods also come attached to some winter wetsuits. Hooded wetsuits usually come in thicker neoprene such as 4/3, 5/4 or 6/4mm. The hood itself can be made out of single lined or double lined neoprene. High-end versions feature plush quickdry lining on the inside combined with neotape for extra protection and rash free seams.

Hooded wetsuit

Hooded wetsuits feature an attached hood and usually come in thicker neoprene such as 4/3, 5/4 or 6/4mm. The hood itself can be made out of single lined or double lined neoprene. High-end versions feature plush quickdry lining on the inside combined with neotape for extra protection and reash free seams.

I

Inside lining

Neoprene inside lining is the knitted and laminated finish on the inside of a wetsuit. Lining can be made from polyester, nylon, spandex, lycra or a combination of these materials. Inside lining can be defined by different characteristics such as soft handfeel, flexibility or elongation level, quickdry functions such as plush insulation inside lining, different colours, textures, price and so on.

Insulation

Thermal insulation is the reduction of heat transfer between objects with different temperatures. In the case of a wetsuit, it refers to the capability of a wetsuit to protect you from the cold water and wind and to retain your body heat inside the wetsuit. Neoprene is a good insulator due to the air bubbles inside the neoprene foam. The thicker the neoprene foam, the better the insulation and warmer you feel in cold water. Neoprene has low energy conductive properties, which limit heat flow. This is why it’s commonly used as insulation material in different applications.

J

Japanese neoprene

Japan is known for its high-end neoprene raw material production. From rubber chips to CR neoprene blocks to sliced and laminated ready to use sheets. Most limestone that is used to produce limestone neoprene is mined in Japan.

K

Key pocket

A key pocket is a place in your wetsuit to store your key. Commonly placed on the shin area or hidden inside the wetsuit.

Kids wetsuit

A kids wetsuit is a wetsuits suitable for kids. These wetsuits are often shaped slightly differently to adult wetsuits. Kids wetsuits are available for all ages, from 1 year olds to teenagers. Kids wetsuit sizes are often scaled to match the age. A size 6 for instance, should in most cases fit a 6 year old.

Knee pads

Knee pads are the abrasion resistant panels on the knees of a wetsuit to protect your knees from impact and wear and tear in this area. Most knee pads have a special lining and neoprene foam type to give it these properties.

L

L (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Large. Men’s European size 52.

Latex seal

Latex seals are mostly used on drysuits and diving wetsuits to make a wetsuit 100% watertight at the nek, arms and ankles. Latex seals are extremely tight, easy to damage and can be uncomfortable, this is why they are not often used on surfing wetsuits.

Limestone neoprene

Limestone neoprene was invented in the 1960’s. The main neoprene compound remains chloroprene, but instead of using dirty petroleum based ingredients it now uses calcium carbonate from limestone to form chloroprene rubber chips. These rubber chips are melted down in an oven and go through a chemical process. The melted substance is infused with air bubbles and baked into a block of neoprene foam. This block is then sliced in any neoprene thickness needed to make your wetsuits, ranging from 0.4mm to 10mm thickness and everything in between. The elongation, flexibility and insulation characteristics of limestone neoprene are the same or better than its predecessor petroleum based neoprene, but are way less harmful to the environment. This makes limestone neoprene one of the most flexible warm and most eco friendly neoprene types out there.

Lining

Neoprene lining is the inside and outside knitted and laminated finish of a wetsuit. It can be single lined or double lined. Single lined neoprene means only the inside has a knitted lining, while the outside is sealed neoprene like mesh, smoothskin or glideskin. Double lined means both inside and outside have a knitted lining. Wetsuit lining can be made from polyester, nylon, spandex, lycra or a combination of these materials. Wetsuit lining can be defined by different characteristics such as soft handfeel, flexibility or elongation level, abrasion resistance such as knee pads, quickdry functions such as plush insulation inside lining, different colours, textures, price and so on.

Liquid seal

The liquid rubber seal applied on the outside of high-end wetsuit seams, gives it an extra layer of protection from water entering the wetsuit. It’s a more durable construction that lasts longer than normal GBS (glued and blind stitched). Usually the liquid seal is applied on top of a GBS seam.

Longarm shorty wetsuit

A summer wetsuit with long arms and short legs, cut off just above the knee. Longarm shorties are usually 2mm thick and can be glued and blindstitched or have non waterproof flatlock seams.

Long john wetsuit

A summer wetsuit with long legs and no arms. Long johns can have a back zip, front zip or a velcro shoulder closure to make putting the wetsuit on easier. Long john wetsuits are mostly used for stand-up paddling or longboarding on warm summer days.

LS (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Large Short. Men’s European size 26. Suitable for slightly wider, stronger or heavier body types with a similar height to size Medium.

LT(wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Large Tall. Men’s european size 53. Suitable for taller body types with a similar width in chest and waist to size Large.

Lycra

Lycra is a synthetic fiber with extremely high elasticity. Lycra is similar to Spandex, the more common name for elastane. It can be woven or knitted into a variety of fabric to make the fabric elastic. In wetsuits, lycra is used to make the outside and inside lining flexible by knitting it in combination with nylon or polyester. Lycra can also be used in fabrics to make rashguards, also known as lycras, to protect the skin against UV rays while surfing. Clothing used for cycling often uses a type of these fabrics too.

M

M (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Medium. Men’s european size 50.

Melco dots

A melco dot is a Japanese reinforcement material which is heat welded on the inside of a wetsuit to reinforce certain stress areas to make a wetsuit more durable. Melco dots prevent overstretching, which can lead to tearing the wetsuit. Melco material can be used as heat welded tape or heat welded patches or dots. This patch is usually found on the inside of the wetsuit where multiple seams meet in one place, or where less flexible material is stitched to a more flexible material to create an even stress release area.

Mens wetsuit

Mens wetsuits are wetsuits designed to fit a male body shape and sizes. Mens wetsuits are available in different thicknesses, neoprene types and seam constructions.

Mesh neoprene

Mesh neoprene, or smoothskin neoprene, can be used as an outside finish of a wetsuit panel. Why is it called mesh? This is due to the fact that a mesh wire grid is used to heat seal the outside skin of the neoprene foam to make it durable and water repellant. This creates a mesh texture on the surface of the material. Mesh is a type of single lined skin neoprene that is similar to smoothskin or glideskin, but mesh is often less flexible and has a matt textured finish, while glideskin and smoothskin have a more shiny and smooth surface. These types of neoprene are often used on the chest and back panels of a wetsuit to keep you warmer in windy and cold conditions. The sealed material surface makes the water droplets run down faster without being absorbed by the lining, this protects you against windchill and makes it warmer than double lined neoprene.

ML (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Medium Large. Suitable for slightly wider or heavier body types with a similar height to size Medium. ML is a similar to size LS.

MS (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Medium Short. Men’s european size 25. Suitable for slightly wider body types with a similar height to size Small.

MT (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Medium Tall. Men’s european size 51 or 98. Suitable for taller body types with a similar width in chest and waist to size Medium.

N

Natural rubber

Natural rubber, locally known as caoutchouc, is the material harvested from the latex saps of rubber trees. It mainly consists of polymers of the organic compound isoprene and water. Rubber trees grow in tropical areas around the world. Natural rubber is used as the main ingredient to make neoprene types like naturalprene or neoprene free Yulex Pure.

Naturalprene

Naturalprene is a type of neoprene made from natural rubber, locally known as caoutchouc. Natural rubber is material harvested from the latex saps of rubber trees.

Neoprene

Neoprene, CR neoprene, limestone neoprene, or polychloroprene is a type of synthetic rubber made by polymerization of chloroprene. Neoprene is resistant against most chemicals and can be used in large range of temperatures while it remains flexible. Neoprene is the best material to be used for insulation, especially insulation against temperature differences. This is why neoprene is used to produce wetsuits. It can be fit tight around the body, stay flexible and protect you from hypothermia while surfing in cold waters. The main ingredient of neoprene is the element carbon (C), which can be derived from oil, more environmentally friendly limestone or other sources with a high carbon content.

Neoprene foam

Neoprene foam is the end result of the neoprene production process. Polychloroprene rubber chips are heated up, colored black and mixed with a foaming agent. This makes the liquid neoprene foam up and expand into a mould. After the foaming process, it is sliced in different thicknesses neoprene sheets to make up different millimeters thick wetsuit panels. Neoprene foam can be heat treated to turn into single lined neoprene, or it can be lined with a jersey on both sides as double lined neoprene. Different grades of foam have different capabilities and characteristics such as differences in stretch or elongation, better or worse resistance to UV rays or ozone, different impact or compression strength etc. Usually, the more flexible and softer the foam, the more high-end it is.

Neoprene glue

Wetsuit repair glue, or neoprene glue, is a type of contact adhesive especially designed to glue neoprene panels together. Neoprene glue is flexible and remains waterproof. Wetsuit glue is available in most surf shops. Do not use any other type of glue to repair a wetsuit.

Neoprene thickness

Different neoprene thicknesses can be used in different water temperatures. The thicker the neoprene, the higher the insulation grade, so the warmer the wetsuit is. Wetsuits are mostly sold as 3/2, 4/3, 5/4, 6/4 etc. This number indicates the different millimeter thicknesses that are mostly used in the wetsuit. 3/2 for instance, means this wetsuit has panels of 3 and 2 mm thickness. Usually, the chest and back panel are made out of thicker neoprene foam for extra warmth, while the arms, shoulders and legs are usually made with thinner neoprene for more flexibility. A thin summer wetsuit ranges between 1 and 3 mm. A spring or autumn wetsuit is normally made with 4 and mm panels. You’ll find winter wetsuits in 5/4mm or 6/4mm. Neoprene thickness is measured by measuring the neoprene foam thickness before the inside and outside lining is applied. So the overall thickness including lining is often thicker than the neoprene thickness specified. Be aware that some brands cheat this system and calculate the neoprene including lining. This results in thinner neoprene used which means the wetsuit is much colder than you might expect.

Neoprene wetsuits

Neoprene wetsuits are wetsuits made out of neoprene to use for watersports such as surfing or diving. The neoprene thickness determines the thermal insulation characteristics of the neoprene, while the foam type, seam construction and lining define the elongation properties, flex and comfort. This combined with the right panel layout, size and the fit makes for a good neoprene wetsuit.

Neotape

Neotape is a type neoprene reinforcement tape that can be applied on the inside of a wetsuit for extra durability of the seams and to prevent seam irritation to the skin. It forms an extra layer of protection for water leaks. Neoprene tape can be applied with normal glue, or it can be heat welded onto the fabric which gives a neater finish on the edges to prevent the glue from giving you skin rash.

Neotape 2.0 (or New Neotape)

Neotape 2.0 or New Neotape is a type of high-end heat welded neoprene reinforcement tape that can be applied on the inside of a wetsuit for extra durability of the seams and to prevent seam irritation to the skin. It forms an extra layer of protection for water leaks. Heat welding the tape onto the fabric gives a neater and stronger finish of the tape’s edges compared to traditional neotape to prevent the glue from giving you skin rash.

Nylon (lining)

Nylon lining is a type of high-end flexible and soft knitted lining that can be used to laminate onto the inside or outside neoprene foam wetsuit panels. Nylon lining is the most flexible lining with a smooth handfeel and therefore feels better to the skin than polyester lining. Nylon lining is made from a combination of nylon and spandex knitted together. Usually the more flexible the lining is, the better your wetsuit.

O

Outside lining

Outside lining is the outside finish of a neoprene panel. It can be single lined or double lined. Single lined means there is no outside jersey lining covering the neoprene foam, it is only lined on the inside. Instead, the raw sliced neoprene sheet is heat treated to seal off the outside surface to make it smooth so water droplets will run off easily. Double lined neoprene features a thin knitted jersey laminated to both sides of the neoprene foam sheet, made from a combination of nylon and spandex. Usually the more flexible the lining is, the better your wetsuit.

Ozone resistance

Neoprene foam deteriorates over time and it becomes brittle and it will start cracking. The longer this takes, the better the neoprene foam quality. The main factor that determines this, is the amount of resistance against ozone in the atmosphere and UV rays emitted by the sun. So to increase your wetsuit lifespan, never leave your wetsuit to dry in direct sunlight.

P

PAHs free

PAHs are compounds with a potential increased risk of certain diseases and as research recent shows, they exist not only in tire products but in all rubber products. Example of toxic PAHs are Acenaphthene, Acenaphthylene, Anthracene, Fluoranthene, Fluorene, Phenanthrene, Pyrene, Chrysene and Dibenzo[a,h] anthracene.

The German committee for Product Safety, aligned with the REACH Annex XVII PAHs, has determined the requirements for 18 PAHs permissible limits in consumer goods. SRFACE neoprene has been categorized as Category 2 (Other products) which most parameters out of 18 must be detected under 0.5ppm.

No harmful PAHs can be found in SRFACE wetsuits. We only sell products that are REACH SVHC List Compliant.“

Panel layout

The panel layout of a wetsuit refers to a combination of things, firstly the placement of the seams. Seams are strategically placed to avoid irritation or rash caused by the inside of the seams. The best seam placement is developed to avoid restriction while moving around. Secondly the panel layout is influenced by the neoprene thickness used in certain areas. Thinner neoprene is used in areas that need more flexibility, such as the armpits. Thicker neoprene is used on the chest, back and upper legs to keep the body warm. Thirdly, styling has a big impact on the panel layout, but if designed right, form follows function.

Pattern

A wetsuit pattern is the template used to cut the different panels out of a sheet of neoprene to make up a wetsuit. The pattern determines the seam placement and thus the panel layout.

Petroleum based neoprene

Petrol based neoprene is the traditional method of making neoprene as invented in the 1950’s. Petrol based neoprene is still used in a lot of wetsuits but this is much less environmentally friendly than newer, cleaner versions of neoprene available, such as limestone neoprene, that replaces the harmful oil for limestone mined in Japan. Neoprene is a type of synthetic rubber made by polymerization of chloroprene. Neoprene is resistant against most chemicals and can be used in large range of temperatures while it remains flexible. It is a great material to be used for insulation, especially insulation against temperature differences. This is why neoprene is the best material to be used to produce wetsuits. It can be fit tight around the body, stay flexible and protect you from hypothermia while surfing in cold waters. The main ingredient to make neoprene is the element carbon (C), which can be derived from oil (petrol based neoprene), more environmentally friendly limestone or other sources with a high carbon content.

Plush lined hood

A plush lined hood is a wetsuit hoof lined with fluffy plush. The plush lining creates an extra layer of insulation and protection against the cold.

Plush lining

Plush lining, also known as plush insulation or quick dry lining, is used to describe the fluffy, wool like inside lining of some neoprene wetsuit panels. Plush lining is mostly used to add an extra layer of insulation by using hollow nylon fibers that trap air bubbles and therefore act as insulation. Some high-end plush linings have a quickdry function. This means the material dries quicker than normal inside lining. When wearing it, it feels comfortable, warm and dry on the skin by channeling the water to the back of the fabric, so it can run down the wetsuit, away from the skin. Plush lining is mainly used on body and upper legs only as it reduces the stretch of a wetsuit slightly. The arms, shoulders and lower legs often use the most flexible lining to enhance mobility in these areas.

Polyester lining

Polyester lining is a type of knitted lining that can be used to laminate onto the inside or outside neoprene foam wetsuit panels. Polyester lining is made from a combination of polyester and spandex knitted together. This lining is slightly less flexible and soft compared to the more high-end Nylon lining.

Powerseams

Powerseams are the narrower version of a liquid neoprene seam without blind stitching on the outside. Usually powersems have blind stitching on the inside of the wetsuit, or are completely stitchless. Powerseams come in a variety of colors. Found to be less durable than s-seal or liquid rubber seals.

Prototyping

Prototyping is the process of designing and making prototypes of a wetsuit to test the fit, performance and look. Wetsuit prototypes are tested and are redesigned multiple times to make sure all potential problems are eliminated before bulk production starts.

Proven panel layout

Wetsuits have been around for years and have been perfected, redesigned in both styling function and durability over decades. A proven panel layout has learned from its previous generation wetsuits through testing, trial and error and hours spent in the water to perfect a certain panel layout.

 

Q

Quick dry lining (or Quickdry)

Quick dry lining, or plush lining, is used to describe the fluffy, wool like inside lining of some neoprene wetsuit panels. Plush lining is mostly used to add an extra layer of insulation by using hollow nylon fibers that trap air bubbles and therefore act as insulation. Some high-end plush linings have a quickdry function. This means the material dries quicker than normal inside lining. When wearing it, it feels comfortable, warm and dry on the skin by channeling the water to the back of the fabric, so it can run down the wetsuit, away from the skin. Plush lining is mainly used on body and upper legs only as it reduces the stretch of a wetsuit slightly. The arms, shoulders and lower legs often use the most flexible lining to enhance mobility in these areas.

R

Rash (or surfers rash)

Rash, or surfers rash, is skin irritation caused by rubbing of the inside materials, details or uneven finishes on a wetsuit. Commonly referred to as surfers rash.

Rash vest

A rash vest, also known as a rashguard, is a tight fitting lycra or spandex top that can be used to protect against UV rays while surfing. Rashguards do not have any thermal function, so it can’t replace a wetsuit. It can also be worn underneath a wetsuit if you have a sensitive skin to avoid skin rash. Rash vests are also used in competitions in bright colors so the judges can recognize different surfers in the lineup during the heat.

Repair glue

Wetsuit repair glue, or neoprene glue is a type of contact adhesive especially designed to glue neoprene panels together. Neoprene glue remains flexible and waterproof. Available in most surf shops. Don’t use any other type of glue to repair a wetsuit.

Rubber seal

A rubber seal is a type of seal that can be used to seal the open ends of a wetsuit such as the inside of the collar, ankles and wrist cuffs.

S

S (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Small. Men’s european size 48.

S-seal

S-seal is the technical term for liquid rubber sealed outside seams on a wetsuit. This type of construction is also known as rubber seal, sealed seams, liquid sealed seams etc. S-seal can be applied on top of an already blind stitched seam for extra reinforcement, water leak prevention and durability. Although not as good looking, s-seal is found to be more durable than powerseams.

SBR foam

SBR foam is similar to neoprene foam and can be lined with nylon or polyester lining to get the same appearance as a normal neoprene wetsuit. However, SBR foam has poor elongation capabilities and is hardly ozone or chemical resistant. This is why it is is used mainly in very cheap, not very flexible summer wetsuits with flatlock stitching. Avoid any SBR wetsuits to be used as winter wetsuit.

Sealed ankles

Sealed ankles on a wetsuit are a type of rubber seal that closes the open ends of a wetsuit at the ankles.

Sealed neck

A sealed neck refers to a water repellant glideskin inside collar panel that has firm contact with the skin in the neck to create an even and waterproof neck seal.

Sealed outside seams

Sealed outside seams, or also known as S-seal, are the liquid rubber seams on a wetsuit. This type of seal can be applied on top of an already blind stitched seam for extra reinforcement, water leak prevention and durability. Although not as good looking, s-seal is found to be more durable than powerseams.

Sealed wrists

Sealed wrists on a wetsuit are a type of rubber seal that closes the open ends of a wetsuit at the wrists.

Seams

Seams are the thread connection of two or more wetsuit panels which are usually also glued together to create a waterproof seal. Most wetsuit seams are blind stiched together with a needle that doesn’t penetrate the neoprene completely to prevent leaks. Seams can be reinforced with a liquid rubber outside seal and a neoprene tape inside taping on more high-end wetsuits. A more efficient type of seam is done by flatlock or overlock stitching, but this seam is not waterproof and is only used on summer wetsuits and shorties used in warm waters.

Shoulder toggle (tensioner)

A shoulder toggle is an elastic tensioner cord with toggle that allows you to apply tension on the shoulder opening of the wetsuit. It prevents water from entering your wetsuit by sealing off the shoulder panel.

Shorty

A shorty is a summer wetsuit with short arms and legs. Usually a shorty has a neoprene thickness of about 2 mm and has a flatlock seam construction which lets water through. This is why shorties can only be worn in warm water where not much thermal protection is required.

Shortarm wetsuit

A shortarm wetsuit is a summer wetsuit with long legs but short arms. Shortarm wetsuits are between 2 and 3 mm thick and can have non watertight flatlock seams or watertight glued and blindstitched seams for better insulation in slightly colder water. Shortarm wetsuits work especially well when the water temperature is colder than the outside temperature. Shortarm wetsuits also free up your arms for easier paddling and better mobility.

Single glued

Single glueing is a method to glue the edges of neoprene panels together before applying stitching. Most high-end wetsuits are double or triple glued before they are put together to form the seam.

Single lined neoprene

Single lined neoprene, also referred to as mesh, glideskin or smoothskin, can be used as an outside finish of a wetsuit panel. These are the types of single lined neoprene that have a heat sealed outside skin surface which seal the neoprene foam to make it durable and water repellant. This creates a fine mesh texture on the surface. The finer the mesh, the smoother and shinier the skin. Mesh is often less flexible and has a matt textured finish, while glideskin and smoothskin have a more shiny and smooth surface. These types of neoprene are often used on the chest and back panels of a wetsuit to keep you warmer in windy and cold conditions. The sealed surface makes the water droplets run down faster without being absorbed by the lining. This protects you against windchill and makes it warmer than double lined neoprene. The inside of single lined panels are lined with a nylon or polyester knitted lining for comfort to the skin. This lining can be plush or quickdry lining on more high-end wetsuits.

Size chart

A wetsuit size chart gives an overview of all available wetsuit sizes based on body measurements such as height, weight, chest and waist circumference sizes. Sometimes a size chart includes hip sizes, arm, leg, neck, body and other measurements. By reading the size chart, you can find out what wetsuit size to choose from a variety of available sizes based on your body type. An easier way to read a size chart, is to make use of an online Size Finder to calculate the best size for you directly. Note that wetsuit sizes differ per brand, so always study the size chart carefully before buying a wetsuit online.

Size finder

The Size Finder is an intuitive online size chart developed by SRFACE that recommends the best wetsuit size based on your body type. Fill in your sizes such as your height, weight, chest and waist circumference sizes and the Size Finder will calculate the best wetsuit size for you. Note that wetsuit sizes are different for each brand, so always check out the size finder carefully to make sure you fit a certain size before buying a wetsuit online.

Skin neoprene

Skin neoprene, also referred to as mesh, glideskin or smoothskin, can be used as an outside finish of a wetsuit panel. These are the types of single lined neoprene that have a heat sealed outside skin surface which seal the neoprene foam to make it durable and water repellant. This creates a fine mesh texture on the surface. The finer the mesh, the smoother and shinier the skin. Mesh is often less flexible and has a matt textured finish, while glideskin and smoothskin have a more shiny and smooth surface. These types of neoprene are often used on the chest and back panels of a wetsuit to keep you warmer in windy and cold conditions. The sealed surface makes the water droplets run down faster without being absorbed by the lining. This protects you against windchill and makes it warmer than double lined neoprene. The inside of single lined panels are lined with a nylon or polyester knitted lining for comfort to the skin. This lining can be plush or quickdry lining on more high-end wetsuits.

Smoothskin

Smoothskin is a type of single lined neoprene. It is similar to glideskin, but it’s more sticky. This helps to stick to the wax of your surfboard while paddling. On surfing wetsuits smoothskin can be used on chest and back panels to protect against windchill. This means your sessions will last longer with insulation where you need it most. Smoothskin is also commonly used on triathlon wetsuits. Smoothskin and glideskin are flexible but can be more fragile than double lined neoprene, so be aware of damaging the wetsuit with your fingernails.

Spandex

Spandex is a synthetic fiber with extremely high elasticity. Spandex is similar to lycra or elastane. Spandex can be woven or knitted into a variety of fabric to make the fabric elastic. In wetsuits, spandex is used to make the outside and inside lining flexible by knitting it in combination with nylon or polyester. It can also be used in fabrics to make rashguards, also known as lycras to protect the skin against UV rays while surfing. Clothing used for cycling often uses a type of these fabrics too.

SRFACE

SRFACE is an online wetsuit brand. We made it our mission to make the ultimate wetsuit affordable.

SRFACE wetsuits

Wetsuits designed, manufactured and sold exclusively online by the wetsuit brand SRFACE.

SS (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Small Short. Suitable for slightly wider body types with a similar height to size XS.

ST (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Small Tall. Men’s European size 49 or 94. Suitable for taller body types with a similar width in chest and waist to size Small.

Steamer

A steamer is a classic term used to describe cold water full wetsuits. The word steamer comes from where the surfing wetsuit was developed by Jack O’Neill, Steamer Lane, a famous surf spot in Santa Cruz, California.

Stitching

Stitching is a type of seam construction. Wetsuit stitching comes in a variety of stitching techniques such as blind stitching, flatlock, overlock, e-stitch, double needle, zigzag stitching and more.

Stretch

Stretch refers to the percentage of elongation of a material. The more stretch, the higher the elongation percentage, thus the more flexible the material and wetsuit.

Super stretch lining

Super stretch lining is a very flexible neoprene lining with a high elongation percentage used in high-end wetsuits.

Surf wetsuit

A surf wetsuit is a close-fitting neoprene garment typically covering the entire body or parts of it, worn for warmth in surface water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing and stand-up-paddling.

Surface wetsuit

A surface wetsuit is a wetsuit used for surface watersports. It’s a close-fitting neoprene garment typically covering the entire body or parts of it, worn for warmth in surface water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing and stand-up-paddling.

Surface water sports wetsuit

A surface water sports wetsuit is a close-fitting neoprene garment typically covering the entire body or parts of it, worn for warmth in surface water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing and stand-up-paddling.

Swimming wetsuit

A wetsuit used for swimming or triathlon. Swimming wetsuits are usually made with glideskin neoprene for best performance. Swimming wetsuits are different to surfing wetsuits and require different features.

 

T

Taped inside seams

Taped inside seams refers to waterproof, flexible neoprene reinforcement tape that can be applied on the inside of a wetsuit for extra durability of the seams and to protect against seam irritation to the skin. It also forms an extra layer of protection for water leaks. Neoprene tape can be applied with normal glue, or it can be heat welded onto the fabric which gives a neater finish on the edges to prevent the glue from giving you skin rash.

Textured neoprene

Textured neoprene is a type of single lined skin neoprene with an embossed mesh grid structure.

Temperature guide

A temperature guide is a guide that shows water temperatures within different seasons and surfing locations, so you can select the right wetsuit thickness based on the water temperatures you would like to go surfing in.

The ultimate wetsuit

A wetsuit developed by SRFACE that combines high-end features, a-grade materials, a proven panel layout and an affordable price.

Thermal neoprene

Neoprene is one of the best insulating flexible materials. This is why neoprene is used for wetsuits to enhance the thermal insulation capabilities that a surfer requires while surfing in cold water.

Thickness guide

A chart that shows you recommended wetsuit thicknesses based on your location, water temperatures and season you would like to surf in.

Triathlon wetsuits

Triathlon wetsuits are wetsuits used for triathlon or swim training. These wetsuits are specifically designed for swimming and are designed to take them off as quick as possible during a race. Triathlon have to conform to different standards and requirements, such as the ability of high swimming speed en reduced drag. Most triathlon wetsuits are made from glideskin neoprene, which is easily damaged. The amount of buoyancy is regulated for these products, more buoyancy means easier swimming. These rules don’t apply for other surface watersports.

Triple glued

Triple glueing is a wetsuit glueing technique used to glue different panel pieces together. Often used in combination with blind stitching.

 

U

UV

Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is present in sunlight, and contributes about 10% of the total output of the Sun. UV damages your wetsuit over time. Don’t leave your wetsuit drying in the sun.

V

Velcro straps

Velcro leg straps, or ankle straps, offer extra protection against cold water entering your wetsuit through the ankle cuffs. Velcro straps are often removable and offer an additional option to seal the gap between your wetsuit and your booties in winter. They are commonly used by kiteboarders and windsurfers to prevent water from the spray of your board from splashing into your ankle cuffs.

W

Waist size

Waist size is the circumference of your waist. Measure around your waistline, just above your belly button and below your rib cage. This measurement can be used to determine the correct wetsuit size, especially when buying a wetsuit online.

Warp

Warp, or warp direction, refers to the threads that run the length of the fabric while woven on a loom. This is also known as the machine direction because it is the direction the threads run on the loom. The threads that run in the width of the fabric is referred to weft or weft direction.

Washing a wetsuit

Keeping your wetsuit clean and washed is important to extend the lifespan of your wetsuit. Always rinse your wetsuit after each surf with fresh water, but don’t use chemicals and don’t machine wash, tumble dry or iron as this damages your wetsuit.

Water sealed neck, arms and legs

A type of rubber seal or glideskin panel that can be used to seal the open ends of a wetsuit such as the inside of the collar, ankles and wrist cuffs.

Weft

Weft or weft direction refers to the threads that run the width of the fabric during weaving on a loom. The threads that run in the length of the fabric is referred to as warp or warp direction.

Wetsuit

A wetsuit is a close-fitting garment typically covering the entire body or parts of it, worn for warmth in water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing, stand-up-paddling and diving. Please note surface water sport wetsuits are not suitable for diving.

Wetsuit accessories

Wetsuit accessories are products that can be used together with a wetsuit, such as neoprene gloves, neoprene booties, rashguards, neoprene hoods, neoprene innerwear etc.

Wetsuit alterations

In case you have a special body type, or if your current wetsuit doesn’t have the perfect fit, you can consider to get wetsuit alterations done. This is a complicated process.

Wetsuit bag

A wetsuit bag is a bag to store your wetsuit during transport or to store at home. A wetsuit bag can sometimes double as a changing mat while getting changed. A wet wetsuit can be placed in this bag to keep your car clean from sand and salty water.

Wetsuit booties

Wetsuit booties, or booties, are a flexible type boot made of a neoprene upper with a flexible rubber sole. The more flexible the sole, the better the grip to your board. The thicker the boot, the warmer it will be, but the flexibility goes down as the thickness goes up.

Wetsuit care

Taking care of your wetsuit as by the manufacturers instructions will make your wetsuit last much longer. A few things to consider: Rinse your wetsuit after use, don’t use chemicals, don’t dry your wetsuit in direct sunlight to avoid ozone and UV damage to the neoprene. Don’t machine wash, iron or tumble dry. Avoid chlorine and store your wetsuit on a suitable wide shouldered hanger, or folded in half while drying. Only store your wetsuit in a closet or cupboard when completely dry on both sides.

Wetsuit cleaner

Wetsuit cleaner is a washing liquid suitable to use with neoprene wetsuits in order to extend the longevity of your wetsuit and to keep it fresh. Be careful to not use any chemicals on your wetsuit as it might damage the neoprene or lining.

Wetsuit comfort

The more flexible and soft a wetsuit is, the higher the comfort. But the right fit, thickness and panel layout of your wetsuit are important factors too.

Wetsuit drain hole

A wetsuit drain hole is a small hole placed strategically on your wetsuit to allow for water to exit your wetsuit. Some wetsuits feature a drain hole in the shoulder area or on the ankles.

Wetsuit dryer

A wetsuit dryer is an electronic device used to blow hot air into your wetsuit while hanging up on a hanger. The hanger has a fan built in to speed up the drying process of the inside of your wetsuit.

Wetsuit factory

A wetsuit factory is a production facility where wetsuits are made by skilled workers. A wetsuit start out as a raw neoprene foam sheets which is then laminated together with inside and outside lining before they are cut into wetsuit panels and glued and stitched together by hand.

Wetsuit fit

The right fit for a wetsuit can be determined by a couple of things. Firstly, make sure you buy a wetsuit that matches your body shape and measurements by using a size chart or Size Finder. Don’t just buy a size large because you always wear large t-shirts. A wetsuit should feel very snug and slightly tight the first time you try it on. It’s important to note that this is normal. Of course, you should be able to move freely and breathe normal, but the neoprene material is flexible and will stretch after you’ve used your wetsuit for a couple of times, just like a new pair of jeans. Your wetsuit should show no ‘air bubbles’, wrinkles or excess material under the arms, shoulders and crotch. These air bubbles might fill itself with water and will drastically influence the wetsuits’ performance. If you’re not sure about the size, ask the brand’s customer support team to help you out. Always make sure that;

– Your neck is sealed tightly
– The arms and crotch fit tightly
– You’re able to lift your arms without too much resistance
– You’re able to bend down and forward without too much resistance

Wetsuit gloves

Neoprene wetsuit gloves keep your hands warm while surfing. There are a variety of gloves out there in different neoprene thicknesses and sizes to match your needs.

Wetsuit glue

Wetsuit repair glue, or neoprene glue is a type of contact adhesive specially designed to glue neoprene panels together. Neoprene glue keeps its flexibility but remains waterproof. Available in most surf shops. Don’t use any other type of glue to repair a wetsuit.

Wetsuit guide

A wetsuit guide is an overview of different wetsuit models comparing thicknes, price, features and specifications. So you can pick your favorite combination that suits your surfing needs and budget.

Wetsuit hanger

A wetsuit hanger is a hanger with broad shoulders to prevent neoprene from overstretching in the shoulder area. Don’t use a wire hanger, it will ruin your wetsuit. There are special wetsuit hangers available that allow you to fold your wetsuit at the waist line over the hanger, so you can drip dry your wetsuit without stretching it out too much.

Wetsuit hood

A wetsuit hood is a neoprene product which covers your head and protects it against the cold. Wetsuit hoods can be sold as separate hoods to add to your winter wetsuit. Hoods also come attached to some winter wetsuits. Hooded wetsuits usually come in thicker neoprene such as 4/3, 5/4 or 6/4mm. The hood itself can be made out of single lined or double lined neoprene. High-end versions feature plush quickdry lining on the inside combined with neotape for extra protection and reash free seams.

Wetsuit insulation

Thermal insulation is the reduction of heat transfer between objects with different temperatures. In the case of a wetsuit, it refers to the capability of a wetsuit to protect you from cold water and wind and to retain your body heat inside the wetsuit. Neoprene is a good insulator due to the air bubbles inside the neoprene foam. The thicker the neoprene foam, the better the insulation and warmer you feel in cold water. Neoprene has low energy conductive properties, which limit heat flow. This is why it’s commonly used as insulation material in different applications.

Wetsuit key pocket

A wetsuit key pocket is a place in your wetsuit to store your key. Commonly placed on the shin area or hidden inside the wetsuit.

Wetsuit leggings

Wetsuit leggings are neoprene pants, often worn together with a wetsuit top, to be used in warm water conditions. Neoprene leggings are fashionable and come in a variety of colors and prints. They are similar to Yoga pants, but are made out of neoprene instead of spandex to give you a bit of thermal insulation.

Wetsuit manufacturing

Wetsuit manufacturing refers to the production of a wetsuit from raw material to finished product. Neoprene is machine made, but the assembly of a wetsuit is done entirely by hand by skilled craftsmen and women.

Wetsuit material

Wetsuit material is most commonly known as neoprene. It is used in wetsuits, but can also be used to make other products such as laptop sleeves, beer can coolers or braces.

Wetsuit outlet

A wetsuit outlet is a place where old collection wetsuits are offered for sale at discounted prices.

Wetsuit performance

Wetsuit performance is mostly determined by the amount of flexibility and the ability of a wetsuit to keep you warm. A high-end wetsuit is extremely flexible and doesn’t restrict you in your movements in the water, even when thicker neoprene is used.

Wetsuit rental

The rental of wetsuits, mostly at surf schools or other outdoor centers where you can rent a wetsuit for the day while you do an activity that requires a wetsuit.

Wetsuit review

A wetsuit review is an article describing a specific wetsuit model in detail and comparing it to other models. Usually a wetsuit is thoroughly tested to give the reader the most honest feedback and test report of certain qualities of the wetsuits. This should include positive and negative feedback.

Wetsuit sale

Wetsuit sale refers to a time of the year when wetsuits are sold at discounted prices. Traditionally at the end of the season to clear stock to make space for the next season’s wetsuit stock.

Wetsuit shoes

Wetsuit shoes, or neoprene boots, are made to keep your feet warm in cold water, or to protect you against sharp objects such as rocks, or reefs in warmer climates.

Wetsuit shop

A wetsuit shop is a store that sells wetsuits. This can be the traditional surf shop at your local beach, or an online store where you can order your wetsuit online to get delivered at your door within a day or 2.

Wetsuit size

A wetsuit is a tight fitting flexible garment which is specifically designed to keep you warm in cold water. In order for a wetsuit to do its job, it is of great importance the wetsuit fits your body like a second skin. In contrast to your everyday clothes, most wetsuit brands offer a wide range of wetsuit sizes to fit many different body types. Wetsuit sizes are built up by combining body height weight, chest and waist width. If you’re not sure what wetsuits size is best for you, use the SRFACE Size Finder.

Wetsuit socks

Wetsuit socks are thin neoprene wetsuit socks to protect your feet against cold water. Wetsuit socks usually don’t have a rubber sole, but feature a thin neoprene sole with some reinforcements added to protect it from wearing out when walking on them.

Wetsuit swimsuit

A wetsuit swimsuit is most known as a girls neoprene surf wetsuit with either short legs like a bikini bottom and long arms, or short legs and no arm sleeves. These swimsuits are often a fashion item that have thermal properties to help you stay warm in the water, but they are not as warm as a full neoprene wetsuit.

Wetsuit temperature

The temperature in which you can use a wetsuit depends on the thickness of your wetsuit. The thicker your wetsuit, the colder the water you can use it in. This is why summer wetsuits are thinner and winter wetsuit are thicker, up to 6 or even 7mm for the thickest surf wetsuits to be used in sub zero temperatures.

Wetsuit thickness

Thicker neoprene makes a warmer wetsuit. Neoprene thickness ranges from 2mm for summer wetsuits to 7mm for extreme winter conditions. You’ve probably heard of a 5/4 wetsuit, a 4/3 wetsuit or a 3/2 wetsuit. These numbers represent the different neoprene thicknesses used in the different panels of a wetsuit. However, these numbers usually don’t tell the whole story. Typically, a 5/4 winter wetsuit uses neoprene in thicknesses from 2mm up to 5mm in different areas of the wetsuit.

Wetsuit top

A neoprene top is a top suitable to surf in. Neoprene tops can have a zip like a neoprene jacket, or can be worn like a long sleeve t-shirt. They are usually skin tight, are about 2mm thick and mostly feature non waterproof flatlock seam stitching.

Wetsuit underwear

Wetsuit underwear is an optional extra neoprene layer to use as wetsuit under layer inside your wetsuit on extremely cold days. You can use an under layer top to increase your wetsuit thickness without buying a thicker wetsuit. This does however limit the performance and stretch of the wetsuit, so it’s advisable to rather buy a thicker wetsuit than a thin wetsuit with an under layer.

Wetsuit wash

Wetsuit Wash is a washing liquid developed by SRFACE to wash your wetsuit in order to extend the longevity of your wetsuit and to keep it fresh.

Wetsuit zip

Wetsuit zips come in 3 main options. Firstly, a back zip for easy entry and access of your wetsuit. Secondly, chest zips, which have slowly become the new standard in wetsuit design. A chest zip allows for a better fit, better insulation and less material yield. With today’s flexible neoprene it has also become easier to take your chest zip wetsuit on and off. A zip on the front of your suit is shorter than a zip on the back. A zip is the only part of the wetsuit that isn’t flexible, so the shorter the zip, the more flexible the wetsuit, but shorter zips might make it harder to get into it. Lastly there are zipless wetsuits or zip free wetsuits available but they are harder to get into and out of, and have a bigger shoulder opening that can allow water to enter.

Women’s wetsuit

Women’s wetsuits are wetsuits designed to fit a female body shape and sizes. Available in different thicknesses, neoprene types and seam constructions.

 

 

X

XL (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Extra Large. Men’s European size 54.

XLS (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Extra Large Short. Men’s European size 27. Suitable for slightly wider, stronger or heavier body types with a similar height to size XL.

XLT (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Extra Large Tall. Men’s European size 55 or 106. Suitable for taller body types with a similar width in chest and waist to size XL.

XS (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size Extra Small. Men’s European size 46. Suitable for smaller body types or growing teenagers.

XXL (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size 2XL or Double Extra Large or Extra Extra large. Men’s European size 56.

XXXL (wetsuit size)

Wetsuit size 3XL or Triple Extra Large or Extra Extra Extra large. Men’s European size 58.

Y

Yamamoto neoprene

Yamamoto neoprene is a type of limestone neoprene developed by the Japanese company Yamamoto.

YKK zip

YKK zips are the standard in zip technology. YKK makes high quality zips used for wetsuit design that don’t get corroded by seawater.

Yulex neoprene

Yulex is a type of material that can be used to replace traditional neoprene foam in wetsuits. It is made from natural rubber as main ingredient, harvested from the latex saps of rubber trees.

Z

Zip free wetsuit (or zipless wetsuit)

Zipless wetsuits or zip free wetsuits have removed the traditional chest zip and have replaced it by a slightly bigger shoulder opening. They are a bit harder to get in and out of. The bigger shoulder opening can allow water to enter easier than a wetsuit with a chest zip. But therefore zip free wetsuits gain some extra flexibility.