Wet Suit vs. Dry Suit for Kayaking

Kayaking is rated as one of the top favorite activities for tourists and adventurists. Moving through water with nothing but a paddle and tiny boat full of enthusiastic cheers must make anyone happy with the adrenaline rush. However, many accidents occur during kayaking for lack of safety measures. While doing any activities such kayaking, it’s recommended to wear a suit. Suits come in two types, wet or dry. Which one should you choose? Read further to know more.

Suits for Kayaking: Why Do You Even Need One?

Any strenuous physical activity means you need to have some sort of protective layer. Kayaking is one of the most demanding sports in terms of strength and safety. The water temperature often can be beneath the tolerance level and air status may drastically change. Most Kayaking competitions occur during the winter seasons. Wearing wrong clothes can cause serious problems such as hypothermia

Not just winter, a suit can be handy in dry and hot climate. Especially in sunny areas, suits can protect you from sun damage on the skin. It is suggested that you wear a suit made of UPF rated fabrics.

Since Kayaking requires a lot of movements of the arm, wearing a flexible wearing tailored for this sport is a wise choice. Suits made for kayaking is made keeping the stress and pull on fabric. You want your suit to last for all the upcoming Kayaking seasons, so pick a durable one.

What is a Dry Suit and how does it work?

Dry suits are waterproof sport attire tailored for water sports, such as kayaking. They are usually sealed tightly to prevent water getting in and made from waterproof materials such as nylons. Modern dry suits are made from breathable fabric in order to stop the sweat to accumulate inside. However, it is meant to be worn as an outer layer, so you must wear a base accompanied by a mid-layer.

What are pros and cons of wearing dry suits?

Understanding the advantages and disadvantages will enable to choose wet suit vs. dry suit for kayaking purpose, although this information is handy for any sports similar to it.


  • Keeps you water proof
  • Protects from extreme cold
  • Easy to get into


  • Not great in insulation
  • Prone to cause perspiration
Wet Suit vs. Dry Suit for Kayaking

What are the Parts of Dry Suit?

There are several parts of dry suits. Before opting to buy for one, check if the essential components given below can be found,


This is the outermost part of a dry suit. It is made from waterproof membrane such as neoprene or membrane or a hybrid fabric. Dry suits made from membrane are less stretchable and slightly baggy, making them easily removable.

Waterproof entry

Dry suits must have a waterproof zipper for entry and exit. Although, some suits have it located at the front, most are at the back. Zipper is also designed to be diagonally at the torso.


Seals are found at the wrist and neck and their sole purpose is to block water.. They are available in latex rubber, neoprene and silicone rubber.

Thermal under suits

The main idea of a suit is to protect you from extreme situations such as cold weather and such. This is why suits have thermal undersuits integrated in the design.


Suits must come with gloves or mitts-any hand wearing. They are usually removable and watertight.


Helmets are important in kayaking, as there is ample possibility of impacts. They are made of strong reinforced plastic and can withstand heavy damage


Some ignore the boots, but they are equally essential during kayaking. They are usually made from latex. Some neoprene suits come with waterproof socks as well.


Dry suit might have hoods attached to seal the water out from the face.. These are also made from latex rubber and protected through insulation layer.

What is a Wet Suit?

Wet suits are slightly different from dry suits. They are usually made from neoprene and sometimes even called neoprene suits. Usually they come in thickness of 3 mm and at times even 7 mm, through the latter is preferred.

Wet Suit vs. Dry Suit for Kayaking

How Does a Wet Suit Work?

Wet suits difference dry suits in purpose. The primary goal of wearing on is to keep warm. The neoprene structure also blocks water from entering. The layer of water is heated by absorbing body heat and the film of water droplets keep you warm.

What are pros and cons of wearing wet suits?

Wet suits have some perks and also some down sides. All of these need to be considered while choosing between a wet suit vs. dry suit.


  • Designed to maintain body heat
  • Fashionable
  • More flexible


  • Not waterproof
  • Difficult to wear

When to Wear a Dry Suit and a wet suit?

Wet suits and dry suits look very different and they have different functions. While making a decision to select between wet suit vs. dry suit for kayaking, at first narrow down kayaking conditions. The weather and water temperature will decide which one to use

Dry Suits

Dry suits are much more suited if you are going for kayaking in a harsh environment. Wear a dry suit for places with extreme cold weather and noted for causing hypothermia. Although dry suits can be a pain as they are not much comfortable to wear and at times you end up feeling loaded. But, it is the best option for cold weathers.

Wet Suits

Wet suits are more applicable in cold water but moderate atmosphere temperature. If you are going for kayaking in deep waters, make sure to wear a wet suit. In particular hot and humid weather, wearing a wet suit can help.

Best Kayak Dry Suit and wet suits?

Kokatat makes one of the best dry suits for kayaking, with durable material and comfortable experience. They manufacture suits for both men and women. O’Neil Epic makes best wet suits for kayaking with their signature fashionable touch and sturdy build.

Final Words

Kayaking is a fun activity but safety comes first while doing any sports. So, wearing a dry or a wet suit is must. Whether should you choose amongwet suit vs. dry suit for kayaking will largely depend on the kayaking environment. This article aims to inform you of the options before making decision.