Surfing in the UK means cold water, so your going to need a quality wetsuit and that is a stone cold fact and choosing the right rubber is vital if your going to make the most out of your surf sessions. Obviously your budget is important and our job is to provide you with the best wetsuit your money can buy. Here at Secret Spot, we pride ourselves on being the only surf shop in the UK with the “top 5” – Xcel, Rip Curl, O’Neill, Patagonia and C-Skins.

Listed below is our wetsuit guide covering the different thickness of wetsuits and their suitability for the variations in temperate conditions. So……… 3MM, 4MM, 5MM OR 6MM? Let’s investigate…


A 3mm wetsuit will be very flexible indeed. Perfect for summer surfing in Cornwall, Devon and also a great wetsuit for winter surf destinations like Morocco and the Canaries where water temperatures will vary between 17c- 20c. Secretspot would not recommend a 3mm wetsuit for the use in the north sea regions or Scotland where the water temperature will be much lower. However, some of the higher end 3mm wetsuits we stock will carry you through colder spells such as the Patagonia R3.


A 4mm wetsuit will be suitable for most of the year in Cornwall, Devon and S/W regions of the UK. On really cold days, the thickness of the wetsuit may not keep you warm enough and a thicker wetsuit may be a wiser choice. A 4mm wetsuit would also be suitable for high summer on the East Coast of the UK but only in the months July – September.


The UK’s best selling wetsuit. If it’s one wetsuit for all year round surfing it’s the classic 5mm. This will cover most surf locations throughout the year. With many 5mm wetsuits arriving with thermal linings throughout the suit and detachable hoods making the 5mm even more warmer and practical. You may find surfing in the summer months a little to warm but when summer sadly ends you trusty 5mm wetsuit will see you through the rest of the year.


Nearly all 6mm wetsuits are designed solely for deep winter surfing and just about every model has a built in hood. Snow, freezing windy sub zero temperatures, the 6mm has every technical feature available. A firm favourite with Scandinavian, East Coast UK and any Baltic destinations and simply put, they are the warmest most practical wetsuits for serious cold water usage. The majority of surfers who buy a 6mm hooded wetsuit will also have a 5mm or 4mm suit for the Spring/Summer conditions because the 6mm wetsuit will simply be just too warm as summer approaches in all but the coldest waters on earth.

Wetsuit Design

Wetsuits generally fall into three different designs or plan shapes. Listed below are the alternative models available.

Back Zip

As it says on the tin the classic backzip wetsuit. This is the easiest wetsuit to get in and out of and thus has been an industry standard for over 30 years. Many back zip wetsuits have inserts or batwing panels to ensure minimum water entry through the zip. The days of “flushing” are pretty much gone with todays wetsuits, so rest assured.

Chest Zip

The chest zip design is where you enter the suit directly through the neck/shoulders and is pulled over the head and secured by a small zip closure on the chest. This has largely taken over from the traditional back zip suit for a few logical reasons. The sealing of the wetsuit design means far less water or sudden flush throughs are a thing of the past as water can not penetrate the suit like it will do on a back zip model. Obviously this makes the suit warmer and having no back zip ensures maximum four way stretch across the shoulders and back making paddling so much easier and your surf sessions longer.

Hooded Chest Zip

The hooded chest zip is a strictly cold water suit for pretty much any freezing sub zero conditions the ocean can throw at you. This is a firm favourite with northern latitudes or any cold water destination where freezing air and water temperatures demand the best wetsuit and performance. It is therefore a No 1 seller here at Secretspot throughout the winter months where water temperatures can fall below 5c and air temperatures considerably lower. It is not unheard of for keen local surfers to enter the water when temperatures have been -10c or even colder. A flask of coffee and a slightly warped mindset is paramount in these situations, but when it’s 6 – 8 feet and offshore and its the best day of the year you have no excuses. The main question here is “How badly do you want it sailor”?

As with all of products, we are always ready to chat if you need any advice.

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