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Most scuba divers wear a wetsuit to protect against various risks of the open seas, such as scratches and jellyfish, and most of all to keep warm during the dive. Body temperature drops 20 times faster in the sea than on land, and it is important to keep warm if you want to enjoy your dive and keep safe. However a wetsuit is not the only piece of clothing you need to scuba dive. What else will you need, clothing wise? We have insights on the required diving apparel. Here are some tips.
1. Under the wetsuit, during diving
There are many reasons why you should wear a swimsuit under your wetsuit. One reason is if you are renting your wetsuit, in which case, please don’t go commando. Wetsuits are washed and cleaned after each use, but…
A second reason is that, after the dive, you will probably want to change to something dry and warm, but there may be no changing post on the boat or the beach. If you want to be able to change discreetly, wear a swimsuit.
Choose a form-fitting swimsuit. Women can choose a one piece or a sports bathing suit, and men could use a speedo type or fitting boxers bathing suit. It is important for your swimsuit to fit well and not wrinkle when you pull up your wetsuit. While you dive, a tight fit swimsuit will not move under your wetsuit and will not create wrinkles that may make you uncomfortable. This way you will move freely during the dive.
Your swimwear should be devoid of metallic parts and decorations that might become painful under the wetsuit during the dive. You should also avoid bikini strings that might catch in the wetsuit zipper.
A simple rule of thumb, then: choose simple and form-fitting. That does not mean you have to go without style. There are lots of stylish, colorful, interesting, even eccentric diving swimsuits to fit your style.
2. Warm waters? Wear a scuba diving rashguard
Many scuba divers love rashguards when they dive in tropical waters, and some even wear them under the wetsuit in other temperatures. A rashguard will protect your upper body from scratches, jellyfish and the sun. It is a light piece of clothing that allows you free movement while diving.
3. Required diving apparel for the boat
If you dive from a boat, you will need more clothing before and after the dive, to keep you protected from the wind, cold temperatures, and sunburns.
- A wide brim hat will protect not only your face but also your neck and your ears. Choose a hat made from a technical light fabric offering UV protection and a strap to secure the hat under your chin during the windy boat trip. If you prefer a simple sports hat, remember to use your sunscreen more often at your neck and the back of your ears.
- A windbreaker: The boat trip means wind, even with mild temperatures, and even worse with low temperatures. You don’t want to be frozen before the dive, and you certainly don’t want to freeze after it until you are able to change into dry, warm clothes. On the other hand, you cannot be fully clothed or wear voluminous clothes on board, as there may not be space for you to change and store them. A lightweight windbreaker with a hood can come handy in this situation. You can even wear it over the wetsuit of you cannot change onboard. For lower temperatures, there are windbreakers with fleece inside.
- A poncho towel: this is a very practical solution to dry between dives and to cover up after the dive. Especially is the return boat trip is long, you don’t want to stay wet in the wind. A poncho towel provides you with a cover to change discreetly if needed, it dries you and keeps you warm in mild temperatures.
- Remember to pack with you a small towel to dry your face and your hands, or even your camera. There are very light microfiber towels that dry quickly, don’t take much place and will not weight in your bag.
4. Light clothes for after the dive
After diving, you need to wash your swimsuit and gear, drink some water, have a look at the pictures you took, and have a good time with your crew. What better than a light t-shirt and pair of shorts to protect you from the sun and sweat until you get home? Choose dry-fit clothes that are light to carry.
And if you dive with the same crew again and again, or if you are planning a scuba dive trip to the Red Sea or just came back from Malta, maybe you can imagine your own t-shirt design and come to Athlon. We will be delighted to provide you with the required diving apparel and to create your own design!