A 3/2 fullsuit is the thinnest fullsuit available for surfing. Actually there are 2mm fullsuits but these fall more under that spring wetsuits since they are still used in warmer waters. Like the name tells you a 3/2 full wetsuit – fullsuit covers your whole body except your head, hands and feet. The numbers 3/2 represent the thickness of neoprene used in this wetsuit. 3 stands for 3 millimeters and 2 stands for 2 millimeters. This means that a 3/2 wetsuit is made from neoprene of two different thicknesses, the thicker one is usually used on the body and legs and the thinner is used on the arms and crotch area. The reason for this is improved flexibility of the wetsuit. Thicker neoprene keeps your core warmer while thinner neoprene allows for more flexibility where you need it.
How to check for wetsuit thickness?The numbers 3/2 are written on the sleeve just above the wrist or just below the shoulder.
A 3/2 wetsuit is already made for colder water. If you combine it with wetsuit boots you can use it anywhere down to 57F (14C). This is not a firm number though; there are many things that influence at what temperature a wetsuit can be used so check our wetsuit thickness and water temperature guide to find out more.
3/2 wetsuit is still not considered a winter wetsuit, it’s somewhere in between. But a good 3/2 already has all the features you need in a winter wetsuit, so if you are buying a good 3/2 wetsuit look for:
- Blind stitches – you want a blind stitched wetsuit – one that is sewn together using blind stitching technique. Using this type of sewing the needle never fully penetrates the neoprene which means there are no holes that go all the way through your wetsuit and no holes for the water to come in.
- Sealed seams –look for liquid taped, liquid sealed (there are different names for this) seam. These seams are sealed with liquid rubber and are therefore “100%” waterproof. A wetsuit with sealed seams will be warmer than one without them.
- Extra insulation – look for some sort of thermal lining on the inside of the wetsuit.
- Zipper – a specially designed zipper teeth that are better at stopping water or a shorter zipper means less water in your wetsuit through the zipper.