As winter temps in the south drop faster than comment wars on certain IG posts, 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 between $350 and $550 and runs from most expensive to least.  Later this week we’ll drop 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.


Hyperfreak Fire


Buy Now

One the newest suits from the neoprene lords at O’Neill, the Hyperfreak Fire is their shot at balancing Warmth and Performance. And nail their shot they did, the Hyperfreak Fire is one of their best suits in recent memory

If you take the reputation of their Hyperfreak series (wildly flexy and light) and throw in updated TB neoprene and firewall and add their TB4X graphene infused liner you have one helluva suit. Flex, check. Warmth, check. FUZE entry system, check. A trifecta of awesomeness in my opinion.

If you would like another reason to consider this suit, O’Neill utilise recycled oyster shells, car tyres and plastics, solvent-free lamination, dope-dyed yarn, and limestone neoprene in the construction of the suit. The price tag is the pointy end of this guide, but considering last week we were talking about $1000 suits – $550 ain’t bad for a solid O’Neill option.




Buy Now

My thoughts on this suit have shifted dramatically in the last week while writing this, previously I wouldn’t have been overly strong in recommending this suit. But today I can confidently say to you this is a suit worth checking out based on a couple of surfs in it.

The materials are soft and supple against the skin, the seams are decent and the panelling/fit is impressive. There was some leaks here and there, but that’s generally to be expected. It’s something you can’t escape unless you’re liquid taping. Not sure how warm it would be south of Sydney, but north of Sydney it’s a delight. Smoothie on the chest and back was a welcome surprise, and needed with the offshore days recently.

Since I’ve had some time with this suit, I can say it’s definitely worth adding to your list to check out.

Rip Curl

E Bomb


Buy Now

The Rip Curl E-Bomb 3/2mm Zip Free Steamer is basically the Ferrari within the Rip Curl wetsuit matrix, built for hi-fi surfing by any shredder or kook with enough money to pay for one.

If it’s crazy that there are $1k wetsuits out there (tbh, a custom made suit sounds all sort of dreamy), it’s crazier that you can get a Rip Curl E-Bomb for $500. This is hands down one of the best suits on the market, regardless of price. We reviewed it a while back and as Tim said:

“This is for people who want to feel like they’re surfing in a gymnastics leotard and have the skills to do backflips at will. Also great for those who simply want to be as comfortable as a fat man in trackies when heading into the water.”

This is the suit you get if your Sydney, and north of Sydney up to the Gold Coast. Brilliant suit across the board, and while it’s gone up $50 in price, it’s still a steal.




Buy Now

Xcel are the tradesman of wetsuits. Not flashy but plenty of depth and they get the job done. They took out awards for the warmest and all-round wetsuits a couple of years ago (for the Drylock X suit – review here). If you’re looking at their Radiant Rebound suit here, you should have confidence it’ll be a good suit.

We reviewed the Radiant Rebound a year ago and can honestly say it’s an impressive suit and worthy of it’s price tag. The Xcel Radiant Rebound Suit is good for those wanting a warm, stretchy wetsuit that’s built to last and won’t break the bank. For the price there’s plenty of bells and whistles in the materials, the design itself is rock solid with Xcel’s Radiant Rebound tech, an easy to use chest zip, and great attention to detail finishing. Hello magnet closure!

Given it’s one of the warmer 3/2mms (amazing suit for Sydney chill) on the market we tested this year, you could push it in colder waters where other options require a 4/3mm – just make sure you load with boots and gloves (no one like the claw) Do that and you could get away with 12-14 degree water temp – think Bells or Trestles in the middle of winter. If not, give your local concreter a call and see if he can teach you to harden up.


Advantage Plus


Buy Now

Going from the $900 Elite suit we saw earlier in the week, we’re now sharing with you the Hurley Advantage Plus which comes in a much more affordable $500. If you want a quick look at a range breakdown for Hurley wetsuits, hit this link, it’s a nice explanation about them all.

The Hurley Advantage Plus is the brand’s entry-level suit and comes with ‘Exoflex’ neoprene, strategically positioned seams to avoid rash and allow flexibility, and a soft, quick-drying interior which traps warmth, while smooth skin panels on the chest and back attract heat and keep the wind chill off.

The last Hurley suit I wore (3 yrs ago) impressed me beyond the expectations I’d had, and I imagine this one will be similar – we’ll have a review for this suit up on the site in the next couple of weeks. 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


Seek Amp


Buy Now

One of the only suits I’ve haven’t seen or held in this list, but keep hearing good things about. Small company, I think, so can’t be shelling out millions to team which means if you’ve got Craig Ando and Jack Freestone on your team, you’re doing something right…

This suit, the AMP, comes with all the bells and whistles you expect in a suit these days – some super stretch rubber, some GBS seams that are sealed (taped), fluffy stuff for heat retention and a chest zip entry system. I am interested to see how that CZ performs though, as it seems to run a little short on opening line on the chest – maybe I’m wrong though and it’s just the imagery.

Worth a look if you’re looking to wear something a bit different to what we constantly see in the water, or if you’re like me and always aiming to try out new products from new/interesting brands.


High Seas II


Buy Now

For $450 this might be one of the buys of the winter for what you get. You can get a cheaper suit from other brands, but at $450 you get close to a top market wetsuit that balances performance and warmth really well. All three of us talked it up in previous podcast episodes with Lipped.

Vissla continue to churn out amazing value and great product. Did you know they deliver around 80% of their range in enviro materials? Everyone should do more reading and research into Vissla.  The biggest stand out with the Vissla High Seas II wetsuit is just how dreamy the rubber is. I’d like to make a bed cover from it, car seat covers, maybe even a flare-leg leisure suit to hit the nightclubs in – it’s that comfortable.

From High Seas II to their North Seas all the way up to the AXXE suit, Vissla are doing impressive things in the wetsuit space.

Project Blank



Buy Now

Still haven’t used a Project Blank suit yet, from the reports I get is that they deliver a good suit for the price. Which would be hard to argue given their prices, if you want a value focused suit it’s between Project Blank and needessentials in my eyes.

This suit, their Eco Ultimate, is their sustainable/enviro friendly option. The suit that is all Yulex, Bluesign certified and recycled linings, etc it’s got all the bells and whistles in an enviro option for a very delicious price of $450. If that’s too much, you can either wait for them to go on sale (generally fairly often) or grab a needessentials. But if you beat your suits up, then for an extra $50 you get Patagonia and the Patagonia warranty.


A Series


Buy Now

Rusty making wetsuits! Did you have that on your Wetsuit Bingo Card? I didn’t, but it’s nice to see them come to the market to have a play and enter with a solid suit. Their A Series Ecoprene suit is a nice alternative to what’s available, has some solid eco considerations and at $450 is worth adding to your list when shopping around.

It’s 100% internally taped, but you will get some leaks happening from the get go. The fit/cut is solid, materials are great with ecoprene (limestone), ecofuzz (recycled thermal lining), dope dyed yarns and Aqua-a glues (industry standard at this stage it seems) all adding up to a solid first time entry into the wetty market.

For a mid-priced wetsuit, it’s good and worth a look at.




Buy Now

The Revolution CZ is a lightweight, performance focused full suit from Billabong. North of Sydney, especially around the Gold Coast, etc this will be a brilliant addition to your suit roster for winter.

The specs are pretty damn fantastic for a $450 suit and given how much Bong continue to improve each year over the last 6 years or so and you’re pretty much going to get a pretty solid suit for the price. Billabong have always managed to make a solid suit offering in the mid price tier. I would say that if you are going to buy a Bong suit this year though I would suggest the new Natural Furnace that have going (it’ll be in $550+ bracket) but if that’s of your price bracket then try this suit on. Can’t imagine you’ll be bummed at the purchase, especially once you add in Bong’s warranty too.

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




Buy Now

The Modulator from Volcom probably won’t leave you dropping edits like Yago, threading Pipe bombs like Moana or making finals like Robbo. But, for the price of $400 you’re getting a solid suit. Materials, similar to RVCA, were a complete surprise at how good it felt on. It’s got all the bells and whistles you’d expect for this price range. Some quick-dry thermal lining, GBS seams with internal taping, limestone neoprene, etc. and you get a 12 month warranty which is a nice bonus.

For $100 more you can get an Rip Curl eBomb, which is the bomb of performance suits. But if you’re looking for something performance based that is a touch cheaper, or you want something different than say hello to the Modulator. There was some leaks in it, and some pattern/cut issues that left me scratching my head, but overall for $400 I can confidently say it’s worth looking at. And odds on you’ll probably find it on sale at some point and then it’s really worth it.




Buy Now

Don’t know much about Buell beyond they sponsor a few people – Stuey, Sage, and so on – and also create suits for various brands. Think they’ve done Volcom and RVCA previously. Specs on paper look good, and for $350 it ain’t a bad deal.

We reviewed one last year (link) and the verdict was: Buell backs up his high energy chatter with a beautiful premium neoprene that makes you want to surf in the suit. Fun touches and personality plus – a welcome blast of energy in a sometimes overly serious space.”

1-year warranty on all workmanship and material