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 Wetsuits to keep you warm in winter and spring

Getting cold when out on or in the water can ruin your enjoyment and duration. 

When the water and air temperatures drop, make sure you have the right wetsuit to keep you getting out on the water from winter until spring!

How to keep warm during the winter and spring months?

When the temperature starts to cool after September, the water gradually starts dropping and as the air temperatures get close to freezing, the water feels even colder! The coldest time of the year to go in the sea is actually from the period of January-March when the water temperatures get as low as 7 degrees (at our local area of Poole, but even colder the more north you are!).

As such, if you are out in cold water temperatures such as these for a prolonged amount of time (generally over 30 minutes) then this can be dangerous to your health, especially if your body is not used to it, and the amount of time it takes to recover is considerably longer too. With watersports, you generally combine the cold water with some cold wind in winter and together I think 30 minutes is an achievement! Hence, the invention of the wetsuit is a god-send!


What is a wetsuit for?

A wetsuit is designed to provide thermal insulation by trapping a thin layer of water between the suit and the wearer's body. This trapped water is then warmed by the body, creating a protective layer that helps retain heat and keeps the person warm in cold water, as the wetsuit material of neoprene is waterproof. For winter and colder weather conditions when you want to prevent hypothermia, a winter wetsuit is especially needed as it provides more insulation and protection against the cold water due to the neoprene thickness being thicker, the seams being sealed and includes extra thermal linings to warm against your skin.


How thick should my wetsuit be?

Wetsuits come in a couple of different thicknesses, dependent on the water temperature you are going out in, and sometimes a preference of how much you feel the cold.

2mm – generally shorties or two piece items such as shorts, leggings and tops. Suitable for summer months in the hot weather when you want just a little warmth for a longer session or to protect against any wind chill on cooler days.

3/2mm – long wetsuits that are classed as ‘summer wetsuits’. Still thin enough to not restrict mobility or create excessive heat, but are great to extend your time in the water even in the summer months. An extra layer that can maintain your body temperature even when it start to cool. ‘Summer wetsuits’ are generally considered to be suitable for the months May-September.

4/3mm – full-length wetsuits that are know as ‘three season’ suits, suitable for Spring, Summer and Autumn. They are warmer than a summer suit but not as thick and restrictive as a winter suit. A great option for those that want a quality suit for some colder and longer sessions in spring/autumn, but not necessarily a thick winter suit if they won’t be going out in the coldest months much. A three season suit can generally take you from April through to November. Not too hot for in the summer if you are doing surfing, windsurfing or other wind sports where you can be cooled down, and not too thick to restrict movement on the water.  

5/4mm – 5mm neoprene is what classes a wetsuit as a ‘winter wetsuit’. This thickness helps keep your inner body warmth retained inside the suit with a small amount of water between the skin and neoprene to stop you getting cold. As well as the thickness, winter suits will have sealed seams to stop water entering around the suit as quickly, and some higher-quality winter suits will also incorporate a thermal lining inside to help keep your skin warm. A winter suit is perfect for those keen to go out all year round, even in the coldest months from October-March.

6mm+ - Super thick but super toasty. This is a ‘next level’ winter wetsuit, and suitable for those whose water temperatures are super cold, ie those in Scotland, Ireland or North England/Wales. Many also choose this option around the country if they are doing an activity where they are not always submerged in the water but vulnerable to the cold winds above the water. Many e-foilers, jet-skiers and wing foilers who spend most their time out of the water, struggle to keep their body warm due to the wind and air cooling down the neoprene from the outside. 6mm wetsuits provide that extra bit of resilience and protection.


What wetsuits are good for Spring/ Autumn?

A few of our top picks for 4/3mm wetsuits if you want to purchase one wetsuit for when you go out in the summer and the slightly colder months of April and October-November. Great all-rounders that can save you buying 2 suits if you are less likely to go out much in the coldest waters. Take a look at our whole range here. 

Men's 4/3 Wetsuits - 

> Alder Torch 4/3 Chest zip -

Extra stretch on the upper torso for comfort and movement. Taped seams with added Fireline lining for more warmth. Take a further look here.


 Alder Torch Mens Spring/Autumn Wetsuit Alder Torch 4/3 Wetsuit


 > O'Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip - 

Super soft neoprene all over with taped seams to keep all the warmth next to your body. Firewall chest lining on the chest, legs and bum; with a chest zip entry that also minimises water entrance and allows for extra stretch across shoulders. Super popular with surfers. Take a further look here.

 O'Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip Full O'Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip Full


Women's 4/3 Wetsuits - 

> O'Neill Hyperfreak Fire 4/3+ Chest Zip -

Super stretch neoprene all over for the most comfortable fit that doesn't impact performance. Neoprene also infused with graphene liner for added warmth without increasing the thickness. Fluid welded seams for no water entry and extra firewall linings on inside too. Take a further look here.

 O'Neill Hyperfreak Fire 4/3+ Chest Zip Womens O'Neill Hyperfreak Fire 4/3+ Chest Zip Womens


> Alder Stealth 4/3 Back zip - 

Great value suit that still keeps you warm as the temperatures start to drop. Aerocore fleece chest panel for added warmth to your skin and glued seams to prevent cold water getting in. Take a further look here.

 Alder Stealth 4/3 Ladies Wetsuit Alder Stealth 4/3 Ladies Wetsuit



Kids 4/3 Wetsuits - 

> C-Skins Legend 4/3 Back zip - 

These suits are a favourite as they keep your kids slightly warmer and enjoying their time in the water for longer, even in the summer. The slightly thicker neoprene is great for those who might feel the cold a little bit more even through the summer months, and a great option for spring/autumn when kids get half-term breaks and want to go in the water still! Added bonus is the great bright colour range! Take a further look here. 

 C-Skins Legend 4:3 Junior


> Alder Kode 4/3 Chest zip - 

Extra stretch and comfort with this suit, even though it is thicker than a summer suit, due to the Surflex neoprene on the upper torso. An amazing option for anyone who will be going out in Easter through to October half term with the kids as it keeps them super toasty with a Fireline lining for those 3 seasons! Take a further look here.

alder-kode-junior-43-chest-zip Alder Kode Junior 4/3 Chest Zip



What wetsuits are good for winter?

Here are just a few highlighted 5mm wetsuits for if you want to go out in the winter months, specifically December-March. Take a look at our whole selection - Winter Wetsuits.

Men's 5mm wetsuits - 

> C-Skins ReWired 5/4 Chest zip - 

 Cosy with 5mm neoprene and a chest zip entry this suit will not limit any time in the water in the winter months. When going for a thicker wetsuit, comfort is even more important, and the extra stretch neoprene on the shoulders enables great mobility and ease getting into the suit. A top favourite. Take a further look here.

 C-Skins 5/4 ReWired Chest Zip C-Skins 5/4 ReWired Chest Zip


> Prolimit Predator 5/3 Back V-zip - 

Slightly thinner on the arms but that increases freedom of movement. Heat is not lost with this suit due to the amazing Zodiac2 purple plush lining throughout the suit, along with taped seams. A great option for those wanting maximum warmth but with the comfort of an easy-entry back zip. Take a further look here. 

 Prolimit Predator 5/3 Back Mens Prolimit Predator 5/3 Back Mens


Women's 5mm Wetsuits - 

> C-Skins ReWired 5/4 Chest Zip - 

Cosy with 5mm neoprene and a chest zip entry this suit will not limit any time in the water in the winter months. When going for a thicker wetsuit, comfort is even more important, and the extra stretch neoprene on the shoulders enables great mobility and ease getting into the suit. A top favourite. Take a further look here.

 C-Skins 5/4 ReWired Chest Zip Womens C-Skins 5/4 ReWired Chest Zip Womens



> C-Skins Surflite 5/4 Back zip - 

A great wetsuit to keep you warmer in those winter months, but not for a big price. Great entry level winter wetsuit for women. Flexible soft neoprene for comfort with sealed seams to ensure warmth is locked in the suit. Take a further look here.

 C-Skins Surflite 5:4:3 Womens C-Skins Surflite 5:4:3 Womens


Kids 5mm wetsuits - 

> Alder Kode 5/4mm chest zip - 

The ultimate combination of warmth and comfort. Neoprene can be stiff, especially when it is 5mm, but the extra stretch neoprene on the shoulders and upper body increases the freedom of movement so your kids have no limits! They can be on the water as long as they like with the Fireline lining inside on the chest panel and taped seams - super warm all through winter. Take a further look here. 

 Alder Kode Junior 5/4 Chest Wetsuit Alder Kode Junior 5/4 Chest Wetsuit


> O'Neill Epic 5/4 Back zip - 

O'Neill Youth 5/4 Epic

100% UltraFlex neoprene so your kids are warm but not restricted in the Epic wetsuit. Sealed seams to keep their bodies warm and a back zip so it is easy for them to get in and out by themselves. Take a further look here.

 O'Neill Youth 5/4 Epic O'Neill Youth 5/4 Epic


This is just a quick range of what wetsuits we offer for winter. We have plenty more available and certain brands are more suited to certain body shapes than others. 

If you can, we recommend coming to the shop or calling us on 01202 700503 for some tailored advice from our wetsuit experts! We can help find the perfect suit for you and your style water sessions!

Full winter wetsuit range here.

By India Hudson


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