If you are considering buying a wetsuit, you will realize that you will have to take one of two options before you - an open cell wetsuit, and a closed cell wetsuit. But which choice is best for you? What are the differences and benefits of each? What of the drawbacks? To help you make an informed choice, here is a closer look at both open and closed cell wetsuits.
Differences between Closed Cell and Open Cell Neoprene
Typically, wetsuits are made of neoprene. But there are two ways in which this material is manufactured. First of all, neoprene is made in thick sheets, which are then sliced to get the right thickness for a wetsuit.
The material itself naturally has air bubbles in it, and these air bubbles get exposed when it's cut to make a wetsuit, hence the name “open cell'. These open spaces act like suction cups that make the suit adhere to the skin. Because of the open bubbles, a suit made of this material while in this state is called an open cell wetsuit.
On the other hand, a closed cell wetsuit is usually neoprene lined with another material such as nylon or polyester. This kind of wetsuit isn’t porous and makes the suit a little bit stiffer. It does not, therefore, adhere to the skin like an open cell wetsuit would.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Closed Cell Wetsuits
Advantages and Disadvantages of Open Cell Wetsuits
When to Choose Closed Cell Wetsuits?
If you are not that serious into diving and don't want to spend a fortune on high-quality gear, then closed cell wetsuits would be an ideal choice. These suits cannot handle long dives, and they are less flexible which makes them feel uncomfortable on the skin after some time.
When to Choose Open Cell Wetsuits?
When you are a little more serious about your diving and need a suit you can wear for much longer without feeling uncomfortable, then this is the best suit for you. They are also a little expensive, but they do offer great insulation which is great as you will often need a suit that can keep you warm during your dives.
When you go to buy wetsuits, it's important to consider some factors first. The last thing you want is to get a wetsuit worth hundreds of dollars and then realize it was not what you needed. But, faced with a choice between an open and a closed cell wetsuit, decide if you are buying the suit as a beginner who has no intention to spend much time in the water in which case you need a closed cell wetsuit. But if you are a pro who would like to take longer dives and enjoy better insulation, then an open cell wetsuit is the way to go.
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