Finding a suitable wetsuit is not usually a problem, as most suits are fairly hardwearing.
That said, it is important that the areas that are susceptible to wear should be nylon lined on the outside, or have an additional sacrificial layer or wear pad.
Most problems are solved by having the right suit for the right sport!
Suits that are not lined at all on the outside should only be used for swimming, triathlons and the like. They will get damaged almost immediately if you start using them for coasteering or surfing or any other sport where that will come across abrasive surfaces!
Likewise, suits that are partially lined on the outside should only be used for certain sports.
For example, suits for surfing should be lined on the outside in the lower torso and leg areas. The upper chest and back areas can be left unlined so they dry quicker minimising wind chill
For sports such as caving, canyoning (or canyoneering) or coasteering, it is worth considering wearing a sacrificial layer of clothes over the top. For caving this may be a full set of overalls, whilst for canyoning or coasteering a pair of shorts may be sufficient to mimimise damage in the most vulnerable areas!
Most dive suits come with knee pads and even elbow pads. The knee pads are likely to get badly worn over a period of time, and it can be worth replacing these once if the main suit underneath is at risk of being exposed.
Children’s suits are almost all 100% double lined as children will be children, and will find many ways of damaging a suit in ways you haven’t even thought of! With that said, any child’s suit should last long enough until they have outgrown it.
My simple recommendation here is to make sure you have the right suit for the right sport, and to bare in mind the other criteria that to YOU make the best wetsuit! If you haven’t seen them already, take a look at some of the ideas below…
When you think of the best, what else do you have in mind?
- do you mean the cheapest?
- the most comfortable?
- the warmest?
- the most funky and colourful?
- or the most stylish?
You may also want to consider
- what water sport(s) do you want to enjoy?
- what the water temperature will be?
- are you drawn toward eco friendly manufacturers?
- are you drawn toward the big brands?
If you can add any further suggestions for particularly hard wearing suits, then please add your thoughts below. Much appreciated!
If you are a supplier of manufacturer that focuses in this area, PLEASE get in touch!