Fitting guide: Best swimwear for under your wetsuit

September 20, 2023

Fitting guide: Best swimwear for under your wetsuit

A good fitting wetsuit makes a huge difference to staying warm in open water. But what should you wear underneath? From swim shorts and sports bra style bikini tops, to seam-free swimsuits, you need your swimwear to be soft and comfortable like a second skin – and freedom of movement is critical.

Swim shorts and top vs swimsuits

In many ways, a two-piece is better than a one underneath your wetsuit. This is for a number of reasons. First of all, a sports bra style bikini top will give you support while you surf, paddle or swim. Secondly, a bikini top and bottoms are less likely to move around under your wetsuit. But most of all, a two-piece is easier to get on and off when you change.

On the other hand, a swimsuit can give you more protection against chafing than a bikini, but with one caveat – the seams must be super-soft. Picking a swimsuit that fits really well gives you an extra layer of protection between your wetsuit and skin.

All about the fit

Whatever you choose to wear underneath your wetsuit, the fit is key. Your wetsuit must be tight fitting to protect you from cold water. Wetsuits work by trapping a thin layer of water between the neoprene and your skin. That water then warms up to your body temperature, and that’s what keeps you warmer. If your wetsuit is too small, it’ll restrict your movement. But if it’s too big, the cold water will gush through the wetsuit actually making you colder than if you weren’t wearing one at all.

So, if your wetsuit is nice and tight, you’ll need your swimwear to fit like a second skin. That means thinking about:

  • The fabric – is it soft and flexible?
  • The seams – are they soft?
  • The fit – does it fit your body length and boobs as well as your other measurements?
  • Buckles and straps – is there anything that might dig in or chafe?
  • Flexibility – can you move freely?

Our best swimwear for wetsuit wearers

All our swimwear is made from super-soft fabric with a four-way stretch so that it fits snugly on different shaped bodies. We use a unique sizing system too, meaning you can pick your dress size and your bust size to get the perfect fit and support. And our swimwear is cut for freedom of movement.

We picked out our top three pieces for wearing under a wetsuit.

Deakin & Blue Swimbra Bikini Navy

The Swimbra with Swim Shorts or High Waisters

The soft and virtually seamless Swimbra is our favourite bikini top to wear under a wetsuit. It pulls on over your head, giving you great support. Zipping up with a discreet, flat zip on your spine, there’s nothing to dig in or rub against your skin. The muscle back and low-cut arm holes also gives you plenty of freedom for movement without chafing. Pair with the High Waisted bikini bottoms or Swim Shorts for extra protection on your legs.

Best for:  Movement and flexibility – and easy changing.

Top tip:  We love The Swim Shorts for surfing because there’s no chance of a wedgie!

Deakin & Blue X-Back Swimsuit Scarlet

The X-Back Swimsuit

Our softest swimsuit, The X-Back has no leg seam around the bum and the double layer of fabric means that it has no inner seams either. The cross-shaped back not only looks fab, but it’s also designed with freedom of movement in mind – no straps slipping off your shoulders, and plenty of room for chafe-free paddling. Plus, it comes in a range of brilliant colours – it’s only a shame when it’s hidden under a wetsuit.

Best for:Seam-free comfort and an extra layer of warmth.

Top tip:This is our favourite swimsuit to wear under open water swimming wetsuits.

The Long Sleeve Swimsuit

The Long Sleeve

When it’s really cold, you need every layer of warmth you can get. The Long-Sleeve Swimsuit is already a favourite among surfers and paddlers, and in the winter months it just gives that added level of protection. The fabric on the body is double layer meaning no inner seams to chafe against your skin. And because the sleeves are made from a mesh fabric, they give you extra movement for those paddling arms.

Best for:Extra protection from the cold and a rash-vest style barrier between your skin and neoprene.

Top tip: Giving you sun protection in the summer and extra warmth in the winter, we love The Long Sleeve Swimsuit for year-round fun in the sea.