If you plan on doing any type of cold water diving, then finding the best dry suit is a must. Most scuba divers around the world learn wearing wetsuits as they’re cheaper, readily available in dive shops and relatively easy to get into.

But if you learn to dive in cold waters, plan on cold water diving or are diving in areas where there is contaminated water, then you need a drysuit for better exposure protection.

There are some major differences between a wetsuit and a drysuit. Unlike a wetsuit, which traps a layer of water against your skin, a drysuit is 100% waterproof with seals to keep all water out. Some offer a certain level of insulation but usually you’ll wear some kind of thermal clothing underneath, while staying completely dry.

The great thing about drysuits is that they are not just limited to cold water diving – some are versatile so you can take them to warmer climates too. They’re more of an investment than a wetsuit but they will last longer.

For more of our top scuba gear recommendations, check out the Best Wetsuits.

LOOKING​​​​ FOR A GIFT FOR A

FELLOW DIVER?

Check out our gift guide that includes 100 ideas to surprise your diving friends.
From big ticket presents to stocking stuffers, there is something for everyone.

 

Quick Answer - The Best Dry Suits

  1. Bare X-Mission
  2. Hollis DX 300X
  3. Waterproof D7 Pro ISS
  4. Fourth Element Argonaut Flex
  5. Scubapro Everdry 4
  6. Waterproof D1 Hybrid
  7. Viking Pro Surveyor
  8. Bare Trilam HD Tech
  9. Bare D6 Pro Dry HD

Comparison Table - Best Dry Suit

PictureNameMaterialBoots / SocksSealsPriceRating
Bare X-MissionTrilaminateTech BootsLatex$$$4.9
Hollis DX 300XTrilaminateSocksSilicone$$4.8
Waterproof D7 Pro ISSTrilaminateBootsSilicone$$4.7
Fourth Element Argonaut FlexTrilaminateSocksLatex$$$4.8
Scubapro Everdry 4NeopreneSocksNeoprene$4.6
Waterproof D1 HybridTrilaminateBootsSilicone$$$5.0
Viking Pro SurveyorVulcanized RubberBootsLatex$$$5.0
Bare Trilam HD TechTrilaminateBoots or SocksNeoprene or Latex$$4.7
Bare D6 Pro Dry HDNeopreneBootsNeoprene or Latex$$4.3
PictureNameMaterialBoots / SocksSealsPriceRating

DIVE TRAVEL

PACKING LIST

Don't forget important gear at home!


Print out this free dive gear packing list to prepare for your next adventure.


Plus, you'll get exclusive content in our newsletter to help you make the most of your time underwater!

* You will get weekly emails with practical diving advice that complement the information contained in the packing list. You can always opt out of these emails.

 

Reviews - The Best Dry Suits for Scuba Diving

Bare X-Mission

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Tech Boots
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Latex
Features
  • Elastic crotch strap
  • Neoprene collar with water drain
  • Front TIZIP Master-Seal Zipper
  • M-PADS for knee protection

PROS: Lightweight, even with the tech boots

CONS: A little bulky

Hollis DX 300X

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Socks
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Silicone
Features
  • Knee pads
  • Velcro pockets
  • Silicone seals

PROS: Light, easy to get on, replaceable seals

CONS: Material not stretchable which can restrict movement, silicone seals are delicate

Waterproof D7 Pro ISS

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Boots
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Silicone
Features
  • Chill guard
  • Warm neck valve system

PROS: The warm neck valve and chill guard offer extra protection from the cold, heavy duty suit

CONS: Sizing runs large so a small female may not get a watertight fit

Fourth Element Argonaut Flex

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Socks
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Latex
Features
  • Tear-resistant fabric
  • Two thigh pockets
  • Customizable

PROS: Versatile. Extremely rugged. Will work in extreme cold conditions with the right thermal undergarments as well as warmer climates with lighter clothing underneath

CONS: Price tag – it’s expensive, but without the additional features you would expect for that price

Scubapro Everdry 4

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Socks
  • Material: Neoprene
  • Seals: Neoprene
Features
  • Zippered leg pocket
  • Hood
  • Rear zipper
  • Large kneepads

PROS: Neoprene means you can wear thin undergarments due to its insulating properties

CONS: Large fit around the shoulders and upper back

Waterproof D1 Hybrid

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Boots
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Silicone
Features
  • 3D mesh lining for extra warmth
  • Integrated silicone seals
  • Warm neck valve

PROS: 3D mesh lining is designed for better insulation, making it ideal for cold climates

CONS: Quite an investment – this is the most expensive of all the drysuits we reviewed

Viking Pro Surveyor

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Boots
  • Material: Vulcanized Rubber
  • Seals: Latex
Features
  • Gas and watertight heavy duty zips
  • Rotating inlet
  • Exhaust valves

PROS: Extremely durable for all conditions, including contaminated water

CONS: This is a heavy-duty suit so may be too bulky and heavy for recreational divers

Bare Trilam HD Tech

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Boots or Socks
  • Material: Trilaminate
  • Seals: Neoprene or Latex
Features
  • Can choose between boots and socks
  • Latex and neoprene seals
  • Vented neck drain
  • Low profile exhaust valve
  • No-stitch technology

PROS: Easy to move around in, lightweight

CONS: Latex wrist seals a bit difficult to get through

Bare D6 Pro Dry HD

Specs
  • Boots / Socks: Boots
  • Material: Neoprene
  • Seals: Neoprene or Latex
Features
  • Vented neck drain
  • No-stitch technology
  • TIZIP MasterSeal with low profile

PROS: A warm drysuit, can choose between latex and neoprene neck seal, adjustable low-profile exhaust valve

CONS: Bit heavy and bulky

PLAN & PREPARE FOR YOUR FIRST LIVEABOARD TRIP


PLAN & PREPARE FOR YOUR FIRST LIVEABOARD TRIP


Enter your name and email to get instant access to the Quick Starter Guide to Liveaboard Diving, which has been used by hundreds of people to plan and prepare for their diving adventures!

Plus, you'll get exclusive content in our newsletter to help you make the most of your scuba safari!


* You will get weekly emails with practical diving advice that complement the information contained in the guide. You can always opt out of these emails.

 

 

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST DRY SUITS

MATERIALS

Drysuits typically come in three different types of materials. Neoprene is durable and has thermal and insulating properties, meaning you can wear thinner undergarments. However, they are also bulky which is not ideal if you are traveling. Trilaminate or laminated suits are better for travelers because they are the most lightweight and are more affordable. However, this material offers no insulation so you’ll need factor in appropriate thermal undergarments for cold water diving.

Drysuits made from vulcanized rubber are heavy-duty and durable. They are typically worn by working divers including scientific, search and rescue diving or diving in hazardous water conditions.

 

ZIPPERS

Each dry suit has a waterproof, heavy-duty zipper to keep you dry. You’ll need to make sure the zippers are completely watertight. There are typically two locations for the zips – one diagonally across the front or on the back, running from shoulder to shoulder. There’s no performance difference between the two – it comes down to personal preference.

 

BOOTS/SOCKS

Some drysuits come with attached boots, others with attached socks.

Boots are integrated into the leg of the drysuit, which may be better suited to divers who do a lot of shore dives and need to walk or climb over rocks.

Other drysuits come with an attached neoprene sock. This sock is waterproof but doesn’t offer the same protection from the elements so most divers most divers will want to wear a boot over the top, such as traditional wetsuit boots for scuba divers.

 

VALVES

The valves on your drysuit allow you to adjust your buoyancy. As you ascend, the air trapped within the drysuit will expand and the valve allows you to release that pressure. An inflator valve will connect to your first stage which allows you to add air to the suit, while the dump valves are either manual or automatic. An automatic dump valve will release excess air when there is too much pressure.

The dump valve should be situated on the arm between the elbow and shoulder to allow for effective air release.

 

SEALS

Wrist and neck seals are crucial for keeping you dry. They need to be tight enough to stop any water getting in, while not cutting off any blood supply. They are usually made of neoprene or latex rubber but can also come in silicone. You may wish to purchase a spare set of seals to have handy in case of any damage to the existing ones.

Latex seals are widely available and affordable, although silicone seals may be a better option for divers with a latex allergy. Neoprene seals can stretch but not as much as latex or silicone.

 

MAINTENANCE COSTS

Be prepared to invest money into the maintenance of your dry suit. This will keep it in the best condition possible and increase its longevity. Keep in mind what potential maintenance or repairs you might have to pay for during the dry suit’s life, such as valve repair or new seals.

 

FIT

While wetsuits hug your body, a drysuit should be a looser fit. It needs to be loose enough so you can wear thermal garments or other suitable clothing underneath. However, the seals around your neck and wrists need to be tight to keep water out.

 

POCKETS

You may wish to look for a drysuit with thigh pockets to allow you to store items such as a slate, torch or other tools. The thigh is an accessible area for a pocket.

 

 

READ MORE

For more of our top scuba diving gear recommendations, check out these popular articles: 

Wetsuits for Diving | Rebreathers

Drysuit Undergarments | Underwater Scooters DPV

436 Shares
Tweet
Pin403
Share33
Email
Flip