Which Wetsuit Should I Buy?

By Alpkit

We've been swimming outdoors since before we can remember. Delighting in a dip when hiking in the Welsh hills; being drawn to nearby rivers and streams; sneaking in local reservoirs or Alpine lakes and swimming in the oceans year-round.

Wetsuit Range Overview

  1. General Considerations
  2. Terrapin
  3. Lotic
  4. Silvertip
  5. Duel

General Considerations

Choosing a wetsuit - and choosing a wetsuit that fits! - can be tricky. All of our wetsuits have flashes of colour at the neck, wrists and ankles for improved visibility, and deep back zippers with a lanyard so you can get in and out of them yourself.

The key features of an outdoor swimming wetsuit are:

  • The temperature retention for extending swim time
  • Comfort. Good fit promotes freedom of movement
  • Buoyancy, to promote a natural swimming style

Is a 

Terrapin

The Terrapin is our most neutral swimming wetsuit. 2-3mm thick for lower buoyancy, it features a GlideSkin front for performance and the cut provides unrestricted arm and shoulder movement for comfort and maximum swimming efficiency.

Unlike other similar wetsuits on the market, the Terrapin is designed specifically for outdoor swimming. The less buoyant nature allows a more natural swimming style and is ideal for those who want the thermal protection of a wetsuit, but not the buoyancy. The Terrapin is perfect for swims around 2 miles in length (or 30min-1hr in the water) in typical UK swimming conditions.

Best for: quick sea dippers, mountain tarn splashers and experienced skin swimmers looking for a neutral-form swimming wetsuit.

Lotic

The Lotic was our very first outdoor swimming wetsuit. A classic all-rounder, it uses neoprene panels of varying thicknesses (from 1.5mm to 4mm) to perfectly balance buoyancy, freedom of movement and swimming comfort for swimmers of all abilities.

By targeting the back, leg and bum area (3.5mm, 3.5mm and 4mm respectively) these panels give you a bit of extra lift in the lower body and promote a more efficient swimming position. Multiple panels of GlideSkin neoprene increase swimming hydrodynamics and improve stroke efficiency. GlideSkin also provides better water repellency and reduces heat conduction, making it warmer than bog-standard neoprene.

Best for: all types of swim activity, splash and stroke; all swimmers, all year round - that's all. Perfect for a Great North Swim attempt.

Silvertip

We spent over 12 months developing the innovative fleece-lined Silvertip, sending several samples and prototypes to be tested by our swimming-focused Alpkiteers and our good friends at the Outdoor Swimming Society.

SilverTip is a fleece-lined swimming wetsuit with much higher thermal properties than our other wetsuits. We've designed it to be suitable for longer swims, colder water and hardy winter swimmers.

Using 3mm-5mm panels of GlideSkin neoprene, we’ve paid very careful attention to balancing the buoyancy with the fleece lining, providing a comfortable and supportive swimming action. The Silvertip is a serious suit for serious swimmers - swimmers who want to swim year-round, in cold water, or spend longer in the water, pushing your distance.

Duel

The Duel is our front-zip swim-run wetsuit. It makes getting in and out of your wetsuit easy-peasy! Great for SwimRun events. Or just for warmer dips when you want a shorty wetsuit.

It's got panels of varying thickness - mixing 2mm and 3mm neoprene to balance insulation and flexibility so you don't feel suffocated on land or cold in the water.

Built to last with nylon-faced neoprene on higher friction areas, making it durable for sliding in and out of water. But the Duel has still got smooth Glideskin neoprene on the chest and back to reduce drag in the water.

3 comments

  • Hi, I am 5’2" – do you do a petite size? (Female, open water swimmer (mostly summer))?

    Jill Chalmers

  • could you please let me know what the recommended water temperature range is for your Silvertip thermal wetsuit ?

    Beverly Lach

  • Good morning,
    Do you deliver to Ireland. I am looking for a wetsuit to allow me swim when the temperatures drop over the winter.
    thanks.

    Pat O Mahony

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