Selecting the Right Wetsuit Vest, Jacket or Rashguard for Surfing

by Ashley on June 22, 2011

Picking out the right wetsuit vest, jacket or rashguard can be a bit of a hassle. Similar to picking out the right kind of wetsuit it really depends on what you’re surfing and where you’re surfing. So before you jump in the water, consider a couple factors that might improve your ocean experience and surf performance.

Water temp

Hyperfreak Crew JacketAlthough this summer’s weather seems promising, the earlier months (mainly June gloom) can put a damper on your beach day plans.  I know wearing things with sleeves in the summer can be frustrating but being comfortable in the water can enhance your performance that much more.  So instead of a vest or a rashguard try something a little more practical like the O’Neil Thinskin Hyperfreak Crew Jacket.  It’s made with UltraFlex DS neoprene, has a super –seal collar and a key pocket.  It’s similar to what the actual fullsuit might be like just with no legs and no over-heating in the summer.  xcel xceleratorAnd though the Hyperfreak is big on function the Xcel suits boast both style and functionality. The Xcel XCELerator is a Nylon-lined 2mm jacket with 1mm sleeves for ultra flexibility.  And since summer is all about the color don’t be afraid to rock a green, grey, or red in the line-up.  The Xcelerator jacket even comes with a waist loop that ties to your boardies to batten down the hatches.  But if you’re looking for some serious core protection, you might just want to take a peek at Rip Curl’s Core Rubber Soul Jacket.  A little more on the soul surfing side, this trendy suit is bringing backRip Curl Wetsuit Jacket the old school look with the old school Rip Curl logo on the front, this jacket is a great way to keep warm.  Use it for dawn patrol, or even just on a windy day.  It’s made with Ultralite and E3 Elastomax neoprene so you can surf and still flex those guns.  The thick neoprene on the core keeps your warm while the flex is all in the sides and underarms so you can keep carving and make those soul turns.

Suns out guns out

Quiksilver Heat Vest

It keeps your core warm and your arms free.  At least this is the case with Quicksilver’s PS+Heat Vest System.  The first of its kind and probable the warmest, this battery operated heating system is built into the suit to keep you warm for hours on end.  By using FAR infrared heating technology the vest ensures warmth of your core and maintains the temperature when placed under a wetsuit.  Looking for something simpler? Look no further than O’Neil’s Hammer Vest.  For under $50 you can keep your midsection warm and your “guns” a blazing in the summer sun. This vest is made with 100% O’Neil’s own premium neoprene, Fluidflex for maximum freedom and minimal restriction.O'Neill Hammer Vest

Guard your goods

Arm freedom of the vest and the protection of the jacket, the rashgaurd is the perfect protection against sunburn, and some gnarly rashes this summer. Both durable and comfortable the Xcel UPF50+ is a Lycra rashguard that does double duty in protecting you.  Despite being thinner than a neoprene vest this long sleeve rashguard comes equipped with UPF 50+ or ultraviolet protection factor with an SPF 50 to block out those harmful rays. xcel rashguardAnd if you’re really feeling like getting your bronze on, it comes in a short sleeve version.  The Xcel UPF50+ short sleeve comes in a blue and white, black and grey, green and white, and a tri-colored black grey and white version.

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