As winter temps in the south drop faster than the cut at Margies, it’s time for most surfers to start thinking about winter wetsuits.

Should you upgrade now? Hold out a little longer and wait until next year? Or get through most of winter and pick something up on sale in September? One of the other pressing questions is ‘which wetsuit should I buy?’ This Buyers Guide for Winter Wetsuits should make all of those questions a little easier.

We’ve split up our Buyers Guide for Winter Wetsuits this year to help better cover the product (and price) offerings out there. As you would have noticed, new wetsuits brands are the new black and there are new brands popping up everywhere.

Today’s guide covers suits in the +$550 price bracket and runs from most expensive to least. Early next week we’ll drop a $350-550 guide, and then we’ll do the sub-$350 guide. Ideally, these three guides will cover everything you’re looking for and help you get a good Winter suit that’ll work to your budget, keep you warm and let you stay flexible too.




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Winter Wetsuits Buyers Guide - Florence Marine X

“We worked with a small crew in Japan to create a wetsuit from the most quality, supple, long-lasting neoprene available. The majority of wetsuits are made in the same factories using the same materials just given different marketing names. From the start, we knew we wanted to provide a wetsuit crafted from only the best materials”

This is wildly expensive. $1k for a full suit that you don’t know how many seasons it’s going to last is crazy in mind. But, at the same time, it’s probably all time. I’ll let you know though, I got one in the pipeline to review.

You’re getting Japanese neoprene (probably Yamo 39 or 40), and it’s hand made per order. Which is pretty cool, but also will create a wait on your suit. On paper, it all sounds amazing.

Warranty: Limited 1 Year warranty from the date of purchase on materials. And replacements, etc are the discretion of FMX


Highline Pro


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“The Highline Pro is a 1mm sealed full suit featuring best in class handmade Japanese neoprene. With only 9 panels, the suit is specifically tailored to be as light and flexible as possible while keeping you warm.”

Kinda wild that we can list three suits that are $1k. This one, from Quiksilver, the Vissla one to the right and Florence to the left. The Quiksilver Highline Pro is an amazing suit, wildly light and flexible it feels like cheating when you’re putting it on. In the water is far king amazing, but quality is still out on it. Heard this years one is a lot better, and going off that, well worth a look if you like the best of the best.

It’s expensive though, so you definitely want to be sure about buying one before laying the cash down (it’s a new board basically). If you happened to have one, hit us up and let us know your thoughts.

Entitled to a replacement or refund for a major failure and compensation for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or damage. (not super clear on their site)




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“Vissla X Axxe Hybrid U Zip is in the forefront of Wetsuit Technology. The easiest suit to slip into & most watertight full suit you will ever put on. Warmest, lightest, softest, most flexible, fastest drying, and most comfortable 3mm suit you will ever surf in.”

I need to know if anyone has used this Japanese suit from Vissla, it sounds amazing! But damned if I could drop a $1k on it. wilder still is we have three suits that are hitting the $1k mark.

They are crafted one at a time, hand made in a small factory near the beach by Japanese craftsmen who are core surfers. They use three-dimensional cutting and patterns developed over decades to make the best fitting most comfortable wetsuit for performance surfing imaginable.

• 1 year from original purchase date on all seams.
• 1 year from original purchase date on neoprene.

Rip Curl

FB HeatSeeker E7


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“The new Flashbomb Heat Seeker 3/2 Zip Free Wetsuit is our most technically advanced cold-water wetsuit. This season, we’re combining our all new E7 Flash Lining through out the wetsuit and our unique Version 2 Flex Energy lining that generates even more heat when stretched.”

Always kinda weird, to me, trying to write something new and interesting about Rip Curl wetsuits. Everything has been written, they’re are the market leaders – for a reason. And this suit is another reason…

While they own the stretchiest, most comfortable suit ever made, Rip Curl has stepped it up in the toast stakes with the Heat Seeker. This is built to be the wetsuit you wear on the coldest day of the year and are still toasty warm. If you surf with polar bears and penguins, this suit (or thicker versions) should be your go to.

*3 yr warranty on all stitching
*12-month warranty on all materials


Furnace Natural


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“The most sustainable wetsuit in the game, the Billabong 3/2 Furnace Natural Zipperless is neoprene free, so you’re easy on the earth as well as your body. Made from Yulex pure stretch natural rubber and our exclusive Ciclo-infused recycled Superflex jersey, this men’s long sleeve wetsuit features a zipperless entry for a performance-enhancing fit.”

Alright, so this statement might rattle some cages. But I think this is the best wetsuit on the market for anyone north of Sydney. For multiple reasons (and yes, I still think Rip Curl is the market leader but this suit, sheesh) – First brand to really make Yulex performance. Performance level is wildly impressive. And seams, and panelling. Seriously I can’t talk this suit up any more and it might bite me in the ass, but feck. Read our review from last year.

*3 yr warranty on all stitching
*12-month warranty on all materials




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“O’Neill’s new Blueprint series marks an evolution of our continuing legacy of innovation, with quality features and high tech construction that strives to integrate more sustainable materials without compromise of performance and durability.”

Hard to go past these guys when out and about choosing between all the winter wetsuits on offer. O’Neill has been making top quality suits since they started and this new series of suits – Blueprint –  reads pretty solid feature wise, and is their first with recycled materials.

Running with what I think is the best chest zip (Fuze) closure on the market, the Blueprint should be wildly easy to get on/off – even with torched shoulders. The big thing to notice here is the Blueprint, like Billabong’s suits, has Graphene running through it…

12 months from date of original purchase (more here)


Drylock X


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“For water-tight construction with unparalleled warmth, the Xcel Drylock X wetsuit series is here. If you need warmth the Xcel Mens Drylock X 3/2mm Fullsuit Steamer is what you want for early cold mornings or evenings, when it’s windy or just extra cold conditions. Featuring Celliant Black lining which is clinically proven to recycle your body heat into infrared energy for maximum warmth and enhanced performance.”

This suit won our ‘best overall’ suit in 2020, and I imagine its’ only gotten better since then. This is a great suit for those wanting a warm, stretchy wetsuit that’s built to last. While there’s plenty of bells and whistles in the materials, the design itself is rock solid with liquid taped seams, an easy to use chest zip, and great attention to detail finishing.

*1 yr from original purchase date on all seams.
*1 yr from original purchase date on neoprene.




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“Our all-new Yulex® wetsuits have exclusive linings for increased stretch. The only Fair Trade Certified™ suits, they’re made with 85% Yulex® natural rubber/15% synthetic rubber by polymer content; natural rubber is FSC® certified by the Rainforest Alliance. Best for water 60°–65° F/16°–18° C.”

Tim’s already been wearing this suit and has been impressed with the increased performance level against previous Patagonia suits we’ve reviewed, so that’s a good thing (obviously).

The R1 is the go-to suit out of the R range, imo, and is perfect for north of Sydney up to the Gold Coast, any further and you’ll burst a bubble from overheating. And while you’re still reading be sure to hit up the Patagonia site to learn more about Yulex and why it’s awesome, along with more info about their suits. It’s definitely something to learn about and become more informed as we move towards new materials for wetsuits.

No time limit on returns, though they ask that returns for fit or colour be made in a timely manner.


Adv Max


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“Sustainable warmth: created using eco-friendly processes including carbon black recycled from old tires, dope-dyed yarns, and limestone based neoprene. ·Silicone smoothie exterior: warmth of smoothskin with the durability and stretch of jersey. ·Limitless stretch: new Exoflex 2 material is more flexible than ever.”

This was the surprise suit of 2021, with both Jim and Tim were rating this suit highly. Well worth a look if you’re chasing something different – this suit has varying levels of thickness through out which enables (ideally) a better performing suit.

Personally, I’m just stoked I’m not overloaded with body wash, jet skis and other random Hurley stuff I’ve seen from the US. Great to see the brand still doing suits (it’s a wild category) and supporting surfers – hello Connor O’Leary

Warranty: Sorry, I’m unable to actually figure out what it is beyond 30 Days return.

If reading our Buyers Guide for Winter Wetsuits has been too much, here’s something to give you some extra froth about surfing in the cold (re)watch the below clip of Dylan Graves (from the series, Weird Waves) surfing the Severn River, where meets up with Guinness World Record holder for longest ride on the Severn River, Steve King. Where does Steve find time to surf in between writing critically acclaimed novels? I really loved this run of content of Vans, it was fun to watch it all and get a different aspect on surfing.