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Best Women’s Wetsuits for Surfing: Comparing Warmth, Comfort, and Price

best womens wetsuits for surfing

This blog was updated in February 2022 for accuracy and updated information.

There are so many different types of women’s wetsuits on the market, that it’s practically impossible to know which one to buy. I’ve tried all sorts of wetsuits from all sorts of brands.  Call me a wetsuit snob, but when it comes to a good wetsuit, I know my stuff.  Whether this is your first time buying a wetsuit, you’re searching for a cold water upgrade, or you want to find the cutest spring suit, this guide will help you find the best women’s surf wetsuit!

A wetsuit isn’t just meant to keep you warm, for me, a wetsuit completely affects my performance in the water so flexibility and comfort are huge factors for me when purchasing a wetsuit.

Not only that but with the increasing choices in women’s wetsuits, you have the option to pick a cute wetsuit that collides with comfort.  I mean come on, a stylish wetsuit matters, and in today’s day and age, you can guarantee a cute design whether it’s a 5/4 or spring suit.

Last of all, price is important when deciding which wetsuit to buy.  No one brand has all the key features in one women’s wetsuit so you’re going to want a wetsuit that fits your budget.

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Things to consider when purchasing a wetsuit

  • Have you tried on this brand of wetsuit before?  All wetsuit brands fit differently even though their sizing all runs the same.  I highly recommend trying on the wetsuit you’re interested in at your local surf shop before purchasing.  Even though you need to try on a wetsuit in person, order online because you will get much better deals.  On this blog, we share the best deals on each wetsuit. After you’ve tried on the wetsuit, head back over to this blog so you can find the best price.
  • How warm is the air? If the water is 62 but the air is in the 70s, there’s a good chance you could get by with a 3/2mm wetsuit.  Consider the average air temperature when purchasing your wetsuit.
  • Is there windchill? Wind plays a big role in how cold the air seems.  60 with a breeze is MUCH colder than 60 without.  As a surfer, you probably want to avoid wind altogether but if you surf around sunset or other breezy times, consider getting a warmer wetsuit than the standard water temperature guide.
  • How tolerant to the cold are you?  I can handle being a bit cold, but for my mom, the second she gets a little cold, it’s all over. Some people are just not as tolerant to the cold as others and this is something REALLY important to consider when picking a wetsuit.
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Temperature: 66 – 72 F / 20 – 22 C

Vivida Linda Reversible Springsuit

Standard Price: $216/£159
Pros: Extremely comfortable, gorgeous print that’s reversible, stretchy, warm & top-of-the-line eco-friendly material
Cons: Very pricey for a spring suit but the cost shows in the high quality

I’m excited to place the Vivida Linda suit at the top of our best women’s spring suits list. Vivida is a surf lifestyle brand that goes above the usual wetsuit standard in terms of quality, comfort, and style.

Vivida Linda Wetsuit
Map of Dreams print on the Linda suit by Vivida

I recently got to sport this suit while surfing in Florida and what stood out most to me was the material. Vivida’s suit is built with an eco-friendly material made from scrap rubber tires, earth-mined limestone neoprene and recycled plastic bottle lining. You’d think this would make the neoprene of a reduced quality but it provides more stretch and flexibility than I’ve ever seen in a wetsuit before.

In terms of function, the front zip makes for easy on and off and there are no uncomfortable seams that cause scratchiness.

Of course, my favorite part has to be the design of the Map of Dreams prints. Vivida absolutely nailed it with a unique, creative design that will get any surfer girl dying to wear it. The seams are also cut in a very flattering line. And did I mention it’s reversible? Oh and let’s not forget Vivida’s radical catchphrase that they’ve imprinted onto the suit in a subtle message: Dreamers, adventurers, thinkers, doers.

If I had no spring suit and had to pick one to go with for my next tropical or summer surf, it’d go with the Linda suit.

Shop the Linda Wetsuit at Vivida

Billabong 2mm Salty Daze Long Sleeve Springsuit
Billabong Springsuit, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $105
Pros: Stretchy and lightweight for maximum comfort, stylish, and cheap
Cons: Like any wetsuit, the warmth will degrade with time.  Billabong suits have about 365 days in them before they really start ripping and deteriorating.

As soon as the ocean gets into the high 60s I’m reaching for this wetsuit.  I love that the material is super thin and stretchy so it doesn’t inhibit my paddling in any way.  I like the stylish designs the Salty Daze comes in.  They’re as cute as bikinis but with twice the warmth.  

I personally prefer the long-sleeved style of spring suit because my legs don’t usually get very cold in the temperature range.  I love the low-cut neckline that makes it feel less suffocating like full suits.  This is overall my favorite spring suit because of the immense comfort and great price.

Current price:

Patagonia Women’s R1® Lite Yulex® Long Jane 
Patagonia Women's Long Jane, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $170
Pros: Total freedom in the arms for maximum paddle power.  Warmer than the typical long-sleeved spring suit.
Cons: More expensive than a typical spring suit.

This wetsuit is perfect for places like Hawaii where the water and air are warm, but not warm enough to skin it.  This is also perfect if there’s a breeze and you need an extra layer of warmth.  The sun can still shine on your skin but you’ll be nice and warm when sitting in the lineup.  

My favorite part of this wetsuit is the unobstructed range of motion it allows sin your shoulders.  I hate wetsuits that add weight to you paddle strokes and this wetsuit has none of that.  With comfortable knee pads and a floral print on the bottom, this wetsuit matches form with function for warm climate surf sessions.

Compare prices:

Related: 8 Best Women Surf Bikinis

Patagonia Women’s R1® Lite Yulex® Long-Sleeved Spring Jane

Standard Price: $170
Pros: Stretchy, warm, and stylish.  This wetsuit will last a lifetime.
Cons: More expensive than a typical spring suit.

The big difference between this and a Ripcurl or Billabong suit is its durability and warmth.  Patagonia wetsuits are built to last forever and this is no exception.  

Even though this suit is still 2mm, it’s much warmer than the other suits in this section.  If warmth or lifetime matter to you, it’s probably better to invest in this wetsuit.

Compare prices: 

Patagonia Women's Sleeved Jane, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Ripcurl Bombshell Bikini Cut Springsuit
Ripcurl Women's G bomb Springsuit, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $105
Pros: Stylish, cheap, and stretchy
Cons: Slightly bulky for a spring suit.  Not quite as thin as the Billabong

Much like the Billabong, this is a great all-around spring suit. It comes in a variety of prints and has a good price tag.  

The neck is low cut for a less constricting feel and the chest zip is good for easy on and off.  The big difference between this and the Billabong is the torso length.  Longer torso women will fit this wetsuit better than the Billabong.

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Flow State for Peak Performance
Rewire your mind for peak surfing performance with the Athlete’s Success Meditation

Temperature: 62 – 66 F / 16 – 20 C

Billabong 3/2mm Synergy Back-Zip Wetsuit
Billabong Synergy 3/2 Back Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $169
Pros: Great price, flexible material, stylish seams, and warm
Cons: Being phased out, won’t last much more than a year

While this wetsuit does come in a chest zip, you probably don’t need the extra warmth since you’d use the 3/2mm wetsuits only in mild water temperatures and don’t require the most extreme warmth.  

The back zip makes for quick and easy on-and-off for long surf days.  Billabong wetsuits always provide maximum comfort through thin but warm materials. This wetsuit comes with thermal lining on the inside, a nice plus for dawn patrol, and has both glued and stitched seams.  

The negative with Billabong is that the materials only last for a year’s worth of surfing and both their glued and woven seams often come undone.

Update: As of Oct 2021, this wetsuit seems like it’s being phased out. There are other Billabong 3/2mm suits, just not for the same great price.

Current price:

Mature Women’s Artemis 3/2mm Wetsuit
Matuse Women's 3/2, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $500
Pros: Extremely warm, unique appearance, and eco-friendly.  Will last for years.
Cons: Extremely expensive for a basic 3/2mm

This is an expensive wetsuit, but not without a reason.  This 3/2mm has top-of-the-line warmth that can arguably keep a surfer warm in as low as 55-degree temps. With glued seams and an internal chest zip, this wetsuit is practically a 4/3 but without the thickness.

Matuse prides itself on its innovative design and this wetsuit is just that. The company uses Neoprene which is 30% more water resistant the traditional neoprene AKA warmer, lighter, dries faster, and lasts longer.

The only downfall to this suit is the fact that it’s still a 3/2 and for a 3/2, the price is insane.  It’s important to note however that this suit should be treated more like a 4/3 than a 3/2 because of the high-tech design.

Click here to get $25 off your first Matuse wetsuit

Patagonia Women’s R1® Yulex® Front Zip Fullsuit
Patagonia R1 Yulex Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $430
Pros: Maximum combo of warmth and comfort.  Will last a lifetime.
Cons: Very pricey for a simple 3/2 wetsuit

Perhaps the warmest and most comfortable wetsuit on the market is the Patagonia R series.  Not only is the series filled with maximum warmth and comfort, but Patagonia Yulex material is 100% naturally derived and produces 80% less greenhouse gases than the production of standard neoprene wetsuits.  

With Patagonia, you can guarantee a comfortable, warm, and eco-friendly product. The Patagonia R1, like the Artemis, is a bit of an overkill for the low temps that go with a 3/2 wetsuit.

Surfing below 65F? Check out these Changing Robes!

Vivida All Weather Changing Robes
Wearing 2 different styles of Vivida’s all-weather changing robes in Aventurine Green (left) and Mineral Blue (right)

You know that moment on a cold gloomy day where you have to leave the comfort of your car’s blasting heater and step out into the cold, damp air to put on your wetsuit? Brutal, right?!

One of our favorite things to have when surfing is a changing robe and in our opinion, Vivida sells the best changing robes for surfers.

Vivida’s changing robes are wind and waterproof on the outside and are sherpa fleece lined on the inside, keeping you warm and cozy. There are so many features to love about Vivida changing robes but some of my favorites are the various pockets on the outside and inside to hold things and keep your hands warm, the spacious fit & dual zipper for easy wetsuit swap, and the pack-away bag that functions as both a stuff pack for the robe or a bag to carry your wet stuff after surfing.

Coming in three earthy tones and featuring an inspiring quote on the back, I never want to take my robe off even after my surf session.

There’s not enough time for me to say how much I love the Vivida changing robe.

Temperature: 54 – 62 F / 13 – 16 C

Tip:All these wetsuits would keep you moderately warm in as low as 52 degrees, however, you will need booties (see our top picks below) in that cold of water.

Billabong Salty Dayz 4/3 Chest-Zip Wetsuit
Billabong Salty Dayz 4/3 Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $250
Pros: Stretchy for maximum comfort, stylish, and cheap
Cons: Like any wetsuit, the warmth will degrade of

For how cheap this wetsuit is, you’re getting an amazing suit. Billabong always delivers immense comfort and warmth and it’s especially true with the Salty Daze line.

The material is still 4/3mm, but there’s an obvious difference in the thin lightweight feel compared to many other wetsuits on the market. With their new 2020 update of Graphene thermal lining along with triple glued seams and a water-draining chest zip, you can expect to be toasty warm even on the coldest mornings.

In my past experiences with this wetsuit, I love it, however, because it’s so cheap, I usually only get one year out of this thing. It’s normal after a year to see rips, tears, and degraded warmth. That being said, I can’t say for sure what their new Graphene features do to the wetsuit’s durability since I haven’t tested it myself.

Hurley Advantage Plus 4/3 Fullsuit

Standard Price: $260
Pros: Best all-around 4/3, a great combination of comfort and warmth, like an in-between of the Billabong and Rip Curl 4/3s, but also slightly less expensive than Patagonia
Cons: It’s pricey and is sold exclusively on Nike.com

Update: After a few complicated years of acquisitions, I’m absolutely STOKED to say Hurley women’s wetsuits are BACK and better than ever. I’m honestly a raving fan of Hurley wetsuits and it was a real heartbreaker when they got rid of women’s wetsuits for a while.

The Advantage Plus is personally my all-time favorite wetsuit for the combination of comfort and warmth it provides.  I can’t stand a wetsuit with tight material on the shoulders.  The Advantage Plus has stretchy and soft Exoflex material for maximum comfort.  

This wetsuit has a draining chest zip with a tightening strap, meaning no water’s going to get in this suit. This suit has soft and thin knee pads, great padding, and is comfortable.

Not only does this wetsuit have glued seams, but its embroidered seams along the suit make for stylish lining.

P.S. Love style? The limited-time LSF collab wetsuit Hurley has designed is adorable too!

Current Price:

Hurley Women's Advantage Plsu 4/3 Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Ripcurl Women’s Flashbomb 4/3mm Chest-ZIp Wetsuit

Standard Price: $480
Pros: SUPER warm
Cons: Thick and bulky feel, not the most comfortable

Ripcurl wetsuits are popular even among the most elite surfers and that’s because they are extremely warm wetsuits. With the Aquaman tape, E5 Flash tape, and glued seams, the wetsuit practically repels cold water, not to mention the water-draining chest zip.

The only negative of this suit is the bulk.  Unlike Billabong whose 4/3 material seems much thinner than stated, with Ripcurl it’s the opposite.  A 4/3 feels more like a 5/4 but at least you’ll be warm. Because of the thickness, the Ripcurl wetsuit is not ideal for those with broader shoulders.

Compare Prices:

Ripcurl FlashBomb 4/3, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Women’s R2® Yulex® Front Zip Fullsuit
Patagonia R2 Yulex Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $460
Pros: The ultimate combination of warmth and comfort, will last a lifetime
Cons: It’s a pricey wetsuit

This is absolutely the best wetsuit for surfing in moderately cold water! The price is high but this suit will TRULY last a lifetime.  

The Patagonia R series runs from R1 to R3 and as the middle model, you will get maximum flexibility and warmth even among Patagonia’s already very comfortable wetsuits.  

Patagonia is increasingly popular due to its eco-friendly materials and production that creates 80% fewer greenhouse gases. The Yulex® material creates high permeance, durability, warmth, and sustainability.  The R2®’s triple glued seams, internal lining, and external seaming.

The front zipper has a corrosion-proof zipper which provides a greater, warmer seal and a longer lifespan. With padding on the knees and ankles, you’ll never have to worry about ripping the material when you’re rushing to put your wetsuit on. 

Last but not least, the R2 has an incredible dry speed.  You can be taking your wetsuit off after the morning sesh and it’ll be dry by noon.  Overall, this is our top pick for full wetsuits.

Related: 5 Ways to Rapidly Improve Your Surfing

Temperature: 43 – 54 F / 6 – 13 C

Booties, gloves, and a hood are highly recommended for cold water surfing in these temps (see our top picks below).

Ripcurl Dawn Patrol Hooded 5/4 Chest Zip 

Standard Price: $270
Pros: Max warmth for true cold water surfing
Cons: Ripcurl tends to have uncomfortably thick material

Though Ripcurl is a bit on the bulky side when the water’s this cold, bulky doesn’t matter so much.  The Flash Bomb series never disappoints when it comes to insulation.

With the built-in hood, not only will you save money on not buying an additional hoodie, but a built-in hoodie prevents water from getting in at the neck.

Overall, this is our top pick as the warmest wetsuit for the most extreme of cold water surfing.

Compare Prices:

Ripcurl Flash Bomb 5/4 Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Patagonia R3® Yulex® Front Zip Fullsuit + Hood
Patagonia R3 Yulex Chest Zip, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Standard Price: $490
Pros: Total warmth and super comfortable, will last forever
Cons: Nothing but the price tag

Last of all is Patagonia’s warmest women’s suit.  Once again, Patagonia is changing the industry with its incredible, eco-friendly Yulex material.  The material is much warmer than standard neoprene and lasts a lifetime.  

Like the R1 and R2, this wetsuit has a draining chest zip with an elastic band to keep water out.  The mesh outer material on the knees and ankles makes for more durability when you’re rushing to put your wetsuit on.

The R3 is the queen of all full suits.  It’s the warmest, most comfortable wetsuit out there, and while it doesn’t have a hood, the addition of one is a small price to pay for such an amazing suit.

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Best Booties, Gloves, and Hoods

While there’s a huge market for booties, gloves, and hoods, our go-to has always been O’neill even though we’re not a fan of their wetsuits.  Here are top picks for warmth and comfort.

O’neill Psycotech 5mm RT Boot

Standard Price: $80
Pros: Super warm and sealed to water with tightening straps
Cons: Like all booties, they’re a little hard to get on

O'neill Psycotech 5mm Booties, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Patagonia R3® Yulex® Gloves

Standard Price: $75
Pros: Tight fitting to prevent water from getting in, thick material keeps the hands warm
Cons: A bit wide-fingered so a little uncomfortable

Patagonia R3 Yulex Gloves, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Patagonia R3® Yulex® Insertable Hoodie

Standard Price: $60
Pros: Insertable hoodie allows little to no water to get in at the neck, highest quality Yulex® material for maximum warmth, tight but not suffocating feel
Cons: Simply the tight fit can be uncomfortable for some, but I don’t know a hoodie that gets much better

Patagonia R3 Yulex Hoodie, Best Women's Wetsuits for Surfing

Hope this helped you find the right wetsuit!  If you have any questions let me know in the comments section below!

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