5 Best Rafting Wetsuits

Author: AllAdventuresRafting | Updated on October 22, 2020

You need a different type neoprene wetsuit for rafting compared to other activities due to the different range of motion on the water. It can be a bit of a minefield depending on weather it's for colder waters or warm weather, so we take a look at your options.

The elements can be quite challenging, and sometimes rendering swimming impossible. That is where the extra layer provided by rafting wetsuits comes in handy. If you consider yourself a fish in the water, you should consider buying one. They are beneficial as they provide additional warmth, support and protection. 

For example, if it is cold water, an athlete might not train on the water due to the water temperature. It's not great to miss training days for athletes who follow a specific training regimen, but having the right cold weather outer layer could make all the difference. Having this added protection allows you to challenge different environments perfecting your agility and determination.

In this article today, we will be considering five of the top products you can buy to provide extra warmth. We'll provide you with a summarized analysis of the pros and cons of each suit. There will also be some additional information to help you make an informed decision. By the end of the article, you will be more confident in choosing which suit to buy.

"Choosing the correct rafting wet suit will be instrumental in any future victories you have out on the waters."

How To Choose A Good One?

Choosing a good wet suit is essential if you plan on going out in the rapids. There are different types of wet suits available but they do differ in terms of features and benefits. Here’s how to choose a good wet suit overall:

1) Check your budget

Before buying anything, first check what kind of money you have set aside for purchasing a new item. If you don't have enough funds then you should think about getting something cheaper instead. You may be able to find some cheap wet suits online which would cost you less than $100. However, there's no guarantee that these suits won't rip apart after only few uses.

2) Consider the type of activity

You must know whether you're planning to use it just for rafting or for other activities too. For example, if you intend to dive under the sea then you'll definitely require a drysuit whereas if you plan to swim in shallow waters then a short sleeve wet suit could work fine.

3) Look for durability

A quality wet suit shouldn't let you down even when exposed to extreme conditions like freezing temperature. Therefore, make sure that the materials used in its construction are strong enough to withstand such harsh environments.

4) Think about comfort

When selecting a wet suit, you need to take into consideration factors like breathability, flexibility, and warmth. These aspects play important roles especially when you're wearing them for long periods of time. In addition, try not to buy too tight fitting wet suits because it makes movement difficult. Instead, opt for loose fit ones so that you can move freely without feeling uncomfortable.

5) Make sure it fits properly

When looking at wet suits, always remember that size matters. Don't forget to measure yourself carefully before ordering a particular model. This way, you'll avoid having to return the items later on. Moreover, you should pay attention to details like length, sleeves, waistline, neck width, etc.

What Makes a Good Wetsuit?

Material Used

The material used is one of the most important things to consider when buying a wet suit. It will impact many factors around what this suit can do. Many premium wet suits today are made from Nylon and Neoprene fabrics.

The balance between how much material they use of each often determines how strong and flexible the suit can become. If you see a written 10% Nylon and 90% Neoprene suit, you know it is very durable. Neoprene is a rubber-like material used to develop wet suits because of its properties in resisting water.

Its durability is excellent because of its shock-absorbing powers. This means that it adds its layer of protection and forms a second skin for the person. If you see the material has more Nylon than Neoprene, it is more of a cloth-like suit than a rubber one. Suits like this are less effective and likely to absorb a large amount of water, making them more of a burden than assistive fabric.

The length of the material chosen is also significant. You will find that when purchasing a suit, the foam of the suit is measured in millimeters. This is basically how thick the suit's skin is, and this determines how much protection it can offer you and how much flexibility.

It is essential to find the perfect balance for you when choosing a suit because 3 millimeters may provide you with excellent protection but less flexibility and less speed. This might be a good option for surfing as you are expecting to face rough water elements. A thinner suit such as a 2 millimeter will be lighter and therefore allow you to swim faster. It will, however, offer you less protection. Therefore, this option would be better for race swimmers.

Whole-body or Sleeveless?

You also must consider the different types of nylon splash jackets. These suits come in different sizes and shapes. If you are a racing swimmer who wants to go faster when swimming, it is advisable to choose a sleeveless option with shorts instead of trousers, providing a better range of motion. This is for slightly warmer conditions or the summer season and offers the user a more athletic and sportier feel.

Selecting a full-body suit will mean that both your ankles and wrists are protected from the cold conditions and will give you sun protection too. You will also receive additional protection on your knees and elbows. This suit is recommended for people who are going to surf or go water rafting. A helmet will nicely complement the security the suit can offer to offer total body protection.

Zip Strength

Zip strength is something to consider because of what you will be facing. When water rafting, you may expect a large amount of strain to be placed on the suit. It would be very dangerous for the suit to snap open unexpectedly at some point.

That is why when choosing a suit, you must decide what you are going to use it for because the durability of the zip is essential. If you expect to go swimming in the pool at your house when it is cold with this wet suit, then you do not need a heavy-duty them.

1. REALON Women's Wetsuit

This splash jacket has been designed specifically for cold waters. It is a full-body woman's wet suit with impressive attributes useful for all forms of swimming. The material that the manufacturers have chosen to make this weight suit from is Neoprene.

It is a material designed specifically to improve heat retention within the wet suit, keeping the core body temperature at a comfortable level. This is quite advantageous for people who swim in chilly waters. The material is also very stretchy, meaning that you feel comfortable. It is also an excellent option for pregnant women who expect to see changes in their bodies. The suit's fibers are made from durable flatlock stitching that is very impressive when holding the suit together.

When wearing the suit, you will not even feel the stitches because they have been professionally done. It comes with padding in various places that works to protect you from any unnecessary injuries. You can expect to pad on the elbows, knees, and shoulders, therefore, minimizing impact and protects the body from rock abrasions from impact. They also supply neoprene booties as an add-on to complement the suit.

To fully wear the suit, you need to zip up from the back. They have made this suit relatively easy to get into because the zip is very long. You can expect it to run from your neck to your lower back. It also has a construction-grade zip that will not easily break.


  • Stretchy Material
  • Long heavy-duty zip
  • Flatlock stitching


  • Less comfortable in warmer weather

2. NeopSkin Wet Suit

This wet suit has been designed to cater to virtually any temperature that you may encounter. Suitable for temperatures between 50- and 67-degrees Fahrenheit, they have designed it in such a way that it maintains your body temperature. This makes it quite a desirable product for people who enjoy swimming in different environments.

If you plan a holiday to travel through a host of other countries and visit their beaches, this is an option to consider. It has been made with premium neoprene. This makes it much more of a flexible wet suit than other products like this. The nylon fabric used works hard to repel any water from coming and staying inside the suit.

This adds to this suit's flexibility and durability. It has been crafted on the fabric side with a full flatlock stitch. This is a very durable type of stitching in which the manufacturer goes over the same point 4 times. It has unique sleeves that have been designed intelligently.

You will find a zip on each sleeve that you can pull to tighten or loosen the suit. This is a nice feature because it means the suit can even become snugger for the consumer. You will also find zips on the ankles to protect them from freezing. The color is fully adjustable, allowing you to protect your neck if you wish to. The main zipper to enter the suit is at the front, which one could argue is more convenient than at the back.


  • Zips on the sleeves and ankles for a snug fit
  • 4-thread flatlock stitch
  • Fully temperature resistant.


  • No protective padding on elbows

3. O'Neill Wetsuits

This is a men's suit with quite a premium price tag on it. It is an 80s themed suit that gives off a retro feel. We like that it is a sleeveless sports wetsuit made from neoprene rubber. This makes the suit more durable, however, slightly heavier than other suits in this category.

It is opened and closed using a zip, and this zip is at the backside of the suit. The zip on the suit is very powerful and broad, meaning it becomes challenging to get out of without help. This is both a pro and a con. In an emergency, you would not want the suit to come off.

However, if you wish to go for a swim on your own, putting on and taking off the suit might become a challenge because of the heavy-duty zip. It has been designed with a 2-millimeter fluid foam body that offers the user enough padding against the waves. This means that you can expect less bruising on your body while surfing.


  • Neoprene rubber is durable.
  • Heavy-duty zip
  • Fluid foam body for protection against rough waves


  • Arms and feet are not covered.

4. Lemorecn Adult's Premium

This is one of the top options on the market today for adults wishing to do sporty swimming. It is a multipurpose suite that can handle various activities from diving right up to kayaking. It has been made to be durable as the manufacturers have included additional stitches and taping in the areas of the suit most likely to tear after strenuous use.

Places like the shoulders, armpits, and groin area have been double stitched to provide greater strength. Neoprene is made from Neoprene, the standard material used to make the top products in wet suits. It is offering the user an athletic fit that absorbs the impact of temperature.

It is considered a premium product because it provides 3 millimeters of fluid firm higher than many products in this range. This means that it offers you more excellent protection against the elements you may be facing in the water and isn't just for warmer waters. This may, however, reduce comfort and flexibility. The suit is slightly more rigid than many other suits because it is designed for protection.


  • The extra stitching on stress points
  • Made from Neoprene mix.
  • 3mm of fluid foam


  • Less flexibility

5. Hevto Shorty

This is one of the more price-friendly options in the range of products we are discussing today. It is an ultra-flexible neoprene, covers the entire upper body and offers the user a more athletic fit. It has been designed so that you can quickly get into the suit without too much hassle.

This is not a professional wet suit rather one that has been created just to have fun with. They have provided an extended nylon belt around the suit that works great to tighten and loosen the suit as you need to. The fabric is 3 millimeters in size, and this offers excellent protection against most water temperatures.

The stitching is made in a flatlock design, meaning that it is less likely to tear on the stress points. It was woven together with Neoprene material combining with it two layers of nylon synthetic fabric. The zip is positioned at the back, and this is a heavy-duty zip that is locked into the collar. The meaning of this is you can rest assured that the suit will not come off while you are surfing.


  • Price friendly
  • Lengthened nylon belt for easy access and entry
  • Zip is heavy-duty.


  • Short sleeves and trousers


In conclusion, the best overall product on the list is the Neopskin Wet Suit option. It has been designed as an all-weather suit making it one of the most versatile options. The combination of protection, improved range of arm motion, and mobility the suit offers the user is very impressive.

It will ensure that you never have to repurchase another suit because it is both durable and comfortable. Made from premium Neoprene material, it can survive water rafting well. It also has leg zippers on both the ankles and wrists, allowing you to have additional protection.

It is also unlikely to tear in any of the stress points, i.e., shoulders, armpits, or groin, because of the full flatlock stitch on those areas that have been done four times. It is an excellent product to consider for any water rafters.

If you enjoyed this article, you might want to read our article on rafting shoes that gives you further options.

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