From experienced surfers to rookie paddleboarders, one thing is for sure: your wetsuit is your second skin out there in the water. It protects you from the elements, keeps you warm, and lets you stay out in the waves for longer. If you want to look after your trusty wetsuit then you will need to find the best wetsuit shampoo. In this article we take a deep dive into what it is and why it matters.
This does a great job at cleaning away all the unwanted residue left behind as a session in the sea.
It’s eco formula protects the ocean and leaves your wetsuit smelling fresh again.
What Is Wetsuit Shampoo?
You might be thinking, “do I really need to shampoo my wetsuit?” If you want to maximise your suits potential then yes you do. You need to find a shampoo that is specially formulated to keep your wetsuit in top shape. It’s not your regular shampoo; it’s designed to keep your wetsuit looking great and smelling fresh!
Wetsuit shampoo is designed for removing salt, sand, sweat, and grime that your wetsuit collects after every session. You may have noticed that there is a slightly funky smell that lingers on your wetsuit. Wetsuit shampoo tackles the odours and leaves you with a wetsuit that smells fresh each time. Hopefully you already know how to wash a wetsuit, so adding wetsuit shampoo to your routine will really improve the cleaning quality and prolong your wetsuit.
The Best Wetsuit Shampoo
Rip Curl Piss Off Shampoo
Rip Curl is one of the most well know surf brands, so this cleaning product gives you the brand security you might be looking for. This shampoo has a Super stretch neoprene conditioner which helps improve the life of your wetsuit. If you want to keep your neoprene in a good state, it’s a worthwhile investment. The conditioner itself is biodegradable, so its good for the environment.
This wetsuit shampoo is suitable for all your neoprene products. Once you have had your surf, throw in your gloves, boots and rash vest to make sure all your gear smells fresh the next time you head out.
Coco Loco Wetsuit Cleaner
The Coco Loco Wetsuit Cleaner is one our favourites due to it’s 100% environmentally friendly design. It’s non-toxic, so we know that there isn’t going to be any damage to marine life.
Coco Loco Shampoo contains live bacteria (the good kind). The live bacteria produces enzymes that help to break down dirt. It’s able to penetrate the tiny pours within the neoprene, so it really does help rid the wetsuit of any left behind smells and odours. If you are looking for a deep clean and great smelling wetsuit this product is very hard to beat.
Gear Aid Odour Eliminator
Gear Aid is a great product that produces a nice smelling wetsuit. We found that it works well on any type of wetsuit and is activated once it is added to water. The specialised formula gently breaks down the salt water and smells. It’s gentle cleaning process helps clean the wetsuit without damaging the neoprene. The odour eliminator effect helps to eliminate any odours, but also keeps future odours at bay too.
Jaws Slosh Wetsuit Shampoo
Don’t take two bottles to wash a wetsuit….the Jaws Slosh shampoo and conditioner removes salt, chlorine and all other unwanted nasties that may corrode your wetsuit gear. This cleaning product is hypo-allergenic, so anyone who suffers from sensitive skin conditions may prefer this type of shampoo.
Slosh is fully biodegradable, so it gets the eco-friendly stamp of approval.
Aqua Tech Wetsuit Cleaner
Aqua Tech is suitable for all neoprene products and is very effective at removing smells and salt water. It comes with a natural eucalyptus scent, so once you’ve washed your suit, you have pleasant lingering smell. This is a nice feature that gives your wetsuit a much more pleasant “new suit” smell. This product is produced in the UK and is very reasonably priced.
Why Do I Need To Clean My Wetsuit
Your wetsuit deserves some love, care and attention. It’s the barrier protecting you from the elements and allows you to spend extra time doing what you enjoy most. Giving your wetsuit a regular shampoo session is a no-brainer for a number of reasons:
1. Prolongs Wetsuit Lifespan: Investing in a high-quality wetsuit isn’t a small expense. You want it to last as long as possible. Regularly washing it with shampoo removes salt crystals that can eat away at the neoprene over time, ensuring your wetsuit remains durable and ready for countless more rides.
2. Enhances Performance: A clean and fresh smelling wetsuit is a happy wetsuit. The build-up of salt and grime can make your wetsuit less flexible and less effective at insulating you from the cold. With a thorough cleaning routine, your wetsuit will maintain its elasticity and provide optimal warmth, allowing you to stay out in the water longer and perform your best. Having invested in wetsuits and not properly looked after them, I have learnt the hard way that a wetsuit shampoo is vital to keeping your suit flexible around the shoulders.
3. Removes the Stench: Let’s face it – wetsuits can get a bit stinky, especially after those intense sessions. If I am on a family day out I might pop back to the beach for a slice of pizza and then return back to the water. Well a slice of pepperoni that falls on my suit leaves behind a residue that water just wont remove. A cleaning shampoo not only cleans the fabric but also eliminates odour-causing bacteria, leaving your wetsuit smelling fresher than a sea breeze.
4. Good for the Ocean: Using wetsuit shampoo doesn’t just benefit your gear; it benefits the environment too. Clean gear means fewer microorganisms and contaminants getting into the water, which is a win for both your playground and the marine ecosystem.
Wetsuit Cleaning Tips:
Frequency: Aim to wash your wetsuit after every few sessions. If you’re a frequent water sport enthusiast, a weekly shampoo is ideal. The salt water and smells soon build up, so get busy washing.
Avoid Machines: Never throw your wetsuit in a washing machine or use harsh detergents. These can damage the neoprene and affect its performance. The washing cycle is too vigorous for the neoprene and will cause it to crease, shrink or tear.
Travel Companion: Wetsuit shampoo comes in travel-friendly sizes. Take some with you on your surf trips or holidays to keep your gear clean and fresh. I keep mine in my car or surfboard bag to ensure I don’t forget it.
What To Look For In The Best Wetsuit Shampoo
Ingredients: Find a cleaning product that boasts natural, eco-friendly ingredients. Harsh chemicals can damage the neoprene and harm the environment. Look for formulas that are gentle on both your wetsuit and Mother Earth. We are looking to enhance our waters, not add harmful chemicals.
Odour Elimination: Check if the shampoo offers odour-fighting properties. A good wetsuit shampoo not only cleans but also leaves your gear smelling fresh and ready for action.
Performance Enhancement: Some shampoos come with added benefits like UV protection and conditioners that extend the life of your wetsuit. These extras can be worth considering, especially if you’re passionate about your water sports.
Brand Reputation: Go for reputable brands with positive reviews from fellow surfers and water enthusiasts. A trusted brand is more likely to deliver a quality product that meets your expectations.
Ease of Use: Choose a wetsuit shampoo that’s easy to use and doesn’t require complicated mixing or multiple steps. I’ve read the book Atomic Habits and learnt that anything that is difficult to do will often put you off doing it. You want a hassle-free experience when cleaning your wetsuit otherwise you will not stick to it.
Your wetsuit deserves some care and attention. It’s probably been one of your most expensive purchases, so give it the respect it deserves. Finding a wetsuit cleaning product isn’t just a luxury; it’s an essential tool in maintaining your wetsuit’s performance, durability, and freshness.
With a regular cleaning routine, you’re not only extending the life of your gear but also enhancing your overall experience in the water. Your wetsuit will thank you with improved performance, enhanced comfort, and an odour-free existence.