The type of wetsuit you need depends on a few factors.
  • Range of water temperatures in which you will be diving
  • Underwater activity in which you will be engaging
  • Boat diving or Shore diving
  • Durability versus Flexibility
  • Your budget


    Ultimate free diving wetsuit
    The ultimate wetsuit is warm, durable, flexible, and comfortable and protect your skin from exposure and injury while underwater hunting. The following is my assessment of the different wetsuit styles and neoprene rubber materials available today.
    The thickness should vary depending on the temperature of the water, the colder the water the thicker the suit should be. I use a 2-3mm suit in water temperatures over (80+F degrees), a 5mm suit in water over (65+F degrees) and a 7mm suit (no zipper) in the winter.

    Zippers tend to reduce flexibility and warmth so I stay away from them. With the new super stretch neoprene available today it is not necessary to use zippers anymore.

    Neoprene blends
    Soft neoprene; tends to be much more flexible and comfortable but is not as durable as harder neoprene.
    Tough durable neoprene; is more durable but is not as comfortable as the new softer neoprene.

    Neoprene skin configurations
    Skin two sides; tends to be more flexible but is more fragile as well.
    Skin one side fabric one side; tends to be more durable but less flexible.
    Fabric both sides; tends to be much more durable but less warm and less flexible/comfortable.
    Open cell neoprene; is very popular as a result of it superior comfort and warmth. It tends to be much more flexible and warm. It also seems to hold a glued seem much better than closed cell or skin neoprene rubber which adds durability to an otherwise very soft neoprene.

    Cleaning your open cell neoprene wetsuit after use
    If you are using my new Greased Lightening spray to slip on your wet suit you will have little clean up after use. It is a good idea to rinse it in fresh water and dry your wetsuit thoroughly after each use.
    If you don’t use my Greased Lightening spray you should soak your wet suit in antibacterial soap and fresh water or a dash or Clorox for a few minutes after each use and I hang my suit outdoors to dry before using again.

    Open cell neoprene wetsuits are best
    In my opinion the open cell neoprene rubber is far superior to any of the other configurations. However you must be very careful when putting it on.

    Getting into the new open cell ultra flexible wetsuit is like a dream with my new "Greased Lightening" spray
    I have developed a product that makes this task a dream. I call my new wet suit spray product, "Greased Lighting." You spray this product into your wetsuit just before you put it on and it slips right on with little or no risk of wetsuit damage. It also helps to restrict bacterial invasion in the open cells of your wet suit.
    As you can see there are a number of different neoprene blends available and an equal number of different ways to configure a neoprene wetsuits on the market today.

    What I use
    I recently switched to the ultra flexible open cell stretch neoprene for more comfort. The new super stretch neoprene rubber offers a much better fit that provides better comfort and warmth. The most important thing to consider comfort and warmth if the suit performs these tasks it is doing its job.

    Preventive wetsuit maintenance
    It is important to monitor the ware of your wet suit for leaks and abrasions that could compromise the utility of your wet suit. I lock my suits after I try them on for proper fit. This means I mix up some AquaSeal and glue all the intersecting seams. This practice extends the life of my suits at least double. When it is done all the intersecting seams look like they have a glued rivet that keeps the stitching from coming undone and the seams from falling apart. After this process the suit stays warm much longer because of fewer seam leaks.

    I hope the above information helps you make an informed decision regarding wetsuits. If there are any questions regarding the above subject call me at 714-969-1681 or e-mail me at skiphellen@earthlink.net

    Good luck and good hunting
    Remember the key is to be with the sea
    Skip Hellen