Best Wetsuits for Plus Sized Women

Best Wetsuits for Plus Sized Women

This guide is for all the curvy badass ladies looking to get in the water without holding back. There’s no “one size fits all” " for some of us full-figured, lushly thick chicks. We hear you, big, tall, and plus-sized women looking for a new surfing wetsuit. Wide hips, big busts, round booty: the curves of a woman’s body are unique. When you feel good in your gear, you naturally perform better. Whether you are a first-time wetsuit buyer or an experienced surfer returning after a break, we’re here to help. Let’s look at our best wetsuits for plus-sized water sports enthusiasts.

Wetsuits Reviewed

  • Billabong - Synergy Wetsuit - $199.95+
  • Roxy - Swell Series Wetsuit - $249.95+
  • Rip Curl - Dawn Patrol - $259.95+
  • O’Neill - Epic Wetsuit - $219.95+
  • O’Neill - Heat Wetsuit - $389.95+
  • O’Neill - Reactor II Spring Suit - $109.95
  • Rashguard and Neoprene Tops - $29.95+

Billabong Women's Synergy - $199.95+

“Best Big Busted Fit”

The Billabong Synergy is the top recommendation for the average-height yet curvy woman. The chest has space for the big-busted surfer with its wider cut in the body. With the generous opening of the back zip entry, there is no need to squeeze your body through the tiny portal found on many surf wetsuits.

Aside from the entry, the sizing chart on the Synergy accommodates curvy body shapes better than most wetsuits. We’ve found the Synergy to fit well on women with stocky or muscular builds and broad shoulders. For reference, a size 12 Synergy is recommended for someone weighing between 150 and 175 lbs. with a chest measurement around 38.5-40.5”. From experience, we’ve found that the Synergy fits on the bigger side, so if you are just over the measurements, still take a shot at trying on the suit.

Lastly, the Billabong Synergy is not only an excellent option for curvy ladies, but it’s also full of high-end technical features. Produced with a super comfortable Superlight neoprene and Graphene internal liner, the Synergy is known to run warm.

For a full overview of the tech and features of the Billabong Women's Synergy Wetsuit, take a look at our review.

Highlights and Features

  • Wide cut to neoprene
  • Great fit for curvy bodies
  • Easy Back Zip Entry
  • Sizes up to 14

Shop By Model

Billabong Women's Synergy 3/2 Back Zip - $189.95
Billabong Women's Synergy 3/2 Chest Zip - $249.95
Billabong Women's Synergy 4/3 Back Zip - $249.95
Billabong Women's Synergy 4/3 Chest Zip - $269.95
Billabong Women's Synergy 5/4 Back Zip - $279.95
Billabong Women's Cleanline Synergy 5/4 Back Zip - $239.95
Billabong Women's Synergy 5/4 Hooded Chest Zip - $299.95

Roxy Women's Swell Series - $249.95

“Curves for the Girls”

Are you looking for a wetsuit with a feminine flair in both fit and style? The Roxy Swell Series might be perfect for you. The recently released Swell line replaces the popular Syncro suit. For all you Kim K. shaped ladies who like to shake what their mama gave them, you’ll appreciate the hourglass cut to the neoprene: roomy chest and hips with a slim waist. From experience, we’ve noticed that Roxy runs more slender than the other brands on this list. Their largest size is a 14, which is excellent for ladies who are 5’8-5’11 and fall between 140-160 lbs with a 37-39” chest measurement.

The attached back zip leash is about a foot and a half in length, which is standard among most brands. Many folks with average mobility can reach behind their backs to grab onto the end of the leash and pull it upwards to zip up themselves. For surfers with limited shoulder mobility, have a buddy nearby to help with the process.

Roxy has been around for many years, developing solid suits with dependable features. Cut from recycled StretchFlight neoprene, the Swell has a comfortable and flexible feel. The wetsuit boasts a WarmFlight internal fleece liner for a cozy fit.

Local PNW Surfers and swimmers alike reach for the Swell 5/4/3 back zip model because of its warm features and affordable price tag. The wetsuit doesn’t have a wide body cut like the Billabong Synergy, but it’s an excellent option for lanky ladies with the taller sizing.

For more insight on the Roxy Women's Swell Series Wetsuit, read our full review.

Highlights and Features

  • Easy Back Zip Entry
  • Feminine curves
  • Taller Hourglass fit
  • Sizes up to 14

Shop By Model

Roxy Women's Swell Series 3/2 Back Zip Wetsuit - $249.95
Roxy Women's Swell Series 4/3 Back Zip Wetsuit - $269.95
Roxy Women's Swell Series 5/4/3 Back Zip Wetsuit - $289.95
Roxy Women's Swell Series 5/4/3 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit - $309.95

Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol - $259.95+

“Cold Water Suit for the Thicker Sisters”

Rip Curl's Women's Dawn Patrol Wetsuit is the best bang for your buck if you're a larger surfer looking to save on quality gear. Made with E5 neoprene and Flash Lining, its triple-glued seams offer flexibility and warmth that can outlast more expensive suits in terms of durability - plus, it comes as a back zip model in sizes up to 14! A size 14 is recommended for ladies between 145-165 lbs. with a 38-40" chest measurement. Simply put, this wetsuit holds amazing value when compared to other options at similar price points; no wonder surfers everywhere rave about it.

If you're looking for an affordable go-to suit, the Dawn Patrol is it! This model line received nothing but rave reviews from our shop—don't miss out on this opportunity to get your own.

Take a look at our full review of the Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol Wetsuit.

Highlights and Features

  • Toasty warm internal lining
  • Affordable price point
  • Sizes up to 14
  • Large variety of thicknesses and entries

Shop By Model

Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 3/2 Back Zip Wetsuit - $259.95
Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 3/2 Chest Zip Wetsuit - $259.95
Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 4/3 Back Zip Wetsuit - $279.95
Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 4/3 Chest Zip Wetsuit - $279.95
Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 5/3 Back Zip Wetsuit - $279.95
Rip Curl Women's Dawn Patrol 5/4 Hooded Chest Zip Wetsuit - $319.95

O'Neill Women's Epic - $219.95+

“Queen of the Back Zip”

O’Neill has been around for years and is known for producing quality surf gear for all ages and body types. The Epic wetsuit delivers whether you are a mom returning to surfing or a teen who just hit a growth spurt. What sets the Epic apart from many wetsuits is it’s available in larger sizes and has a back zip entry.

Many first-time buyers reach for the Epic because it’s a solid entry-level wetsuit backed by the O’Neill name. O’Neill runs true to size with a large range of sizes offered. The suit tops out at size 16, which is excellent for ladies who are 5’9-5’11 and run between 165-185 lbs. If your chest measurement falls near the 38.5-40.5” range, the size 16 Epic is your go-to choice. We currently stock it in both 3/2 and 4/3 models. We recommend a 3/2 for water temperatures ranging from 59-66 F and a 4/3 for water temperatures ranging from 54-58 F. The Epic is an excellent choice for ocean surfers, river floaters, and everyone in between.

The Epic has high-end features typically found in premium models pushing $350+. The UltraFlex neoprene lives up to its name with performance and a comfortable feel. The wetsuit stays warm with the glued and blind stitched seams for a water-tight seam and prolonged durability.

Don’t hesitate to read more about the O’Neill Epic Wetsuit in our comprehensive review.

Highlights and Features

  • Easy Back Zip Entry
  • O’Neill Durability
  • True to size fit
  • Sizes up to 16

Shop By Model

O’Neill Women's Epic 3/2 Back Zip - $219.95
O’Neill Women's Epic 4/3 Back Zip - $229.95

Alternative Options

If you read thru the four options above and feel discouraged about not finding something that will work, we have a few more ideas. Refrain from panicking and hear us out: we’ve had numerous female customers who fit better in a men’s specific suit. We’ve all been blessed with beautiful bodies; some simply fit better in non-traditional-sized wetsuits. With that, let’s explore other plus-sized-friendly options below.

O'Neill Heat - $389.95+

“Go-To Choice For the Big and Tall Ladies”

Our pick for the most high-performance plus-sized suit is the O’Neill Heat. Technically it’s in men’s sizing, so the fit will be slightly different than a women’s suit. Overall a men’s wetsuit has a more rectangle cut, and naturally, the crotch and shoulders have a bit more space. We mention this unconventional option for plus-sized gals because it’s a back zip and comes in the largest sizes O’Neill makes: XXXL and XXXXL, and even the rare XXLS size.

Strongly built former athletes and big-boned women can rejoice that there is a suit that fit’s your measurement requirements. The unique 2LS-4XL sizing is great for ladies 5’9.5”-6’4” and who weigh 200-270 lbs. Although the Heat doesn’t have the curvy cut in the chest and hips like a women’s specific suit, it still has plenty of space for the sisters with up to 53.5” of room up top in the 4XL size.

Back zip entries are typically considered the most accessible entry to get in and out of, and the Heat has the smoothest back zip system of any wetsuit. The Heat is quick to get in and out of, and the fit of the collar has been tailored well to prevent flushing at the neck. It may sound minor on paper, but O’Neill uses the best zippers out of any company. Built out of the most flexible neoprene on the market, TechnoButter 3, the Heat is right up your alley for any big and tall lady looking for the most flexible wetsuit money can buy.

For more insight on the tech and features, read our full review of the O’Neill Heat Wetsuit.

Highlights and Features

  • Generous sizing
  • Easy Back Zip entry
  • All the space for the sisters up top
  • Great for tall 6’4”+ Ladies
  • Sizes up to 4XL

Shop By Model

O’Neill Heat 3/2 Back Zip - $389.95
O’Neill Heat 4/3 Back Zip - $399.95

Warm Water Options

For the ladies who like to play in 75℉+ water but need some coverage for the goods, we recommend investing in a neoprene top or rashguard. This piece of gear covers your assets, and it’s also a great sun protectant for the sunny parts of the world.

O'Neill Reactor II 2mm Spring Wetsuit - $109.95

“Sunshine and Curvy Buns”

The O’Neill Reactor II combines quality workmanship and an offering of generous sizing. Most ladies seek an affordable spring suit for comfort in varying summer water temperatures. Over the years, we’ve had everyone from Oregon river kayakers to ladies in their 80’s swimming in Minnesota lakes reach for the Reactor II. We reference both the Men’s and Women’s models of the Reactor II in this piece. The Men’s model is sized up to an XXXL, allowing for a wide range of fits, and the Women’s model is sized up to 16 with the same build as the previously listed Epic full wetsuit.

The Reactor II is built for comfort in warmer waters. A 2mm spring wetsuit is recommended for use in water temperatures 70℉ and up. The wetsuit is engineered to move and flex with your body from the Fluid Foam and UltraFlex neoprene blend to the breathable Flatlock seam construction.

Spring wetsuits lend themselves to fit a wider variety of body types since the suit is designed with short legs and short sleeves. Many women who run on the shorter side but have a larger chest measurement find that the Reactor II is the best fit for them. Getting the suit on and off is a breeze with the generous back zip entry system. The back zip leash on the Reactor II is noticeably longer than leashes on other spring wetsuits. This feature makes it easier for ladies with limited shoulder mobility to close the zipper when suiting up independently.

Highlights and Features

  • Easy Back Zip Entry
  • Extra Long Zipper Leash
  • Affordably Priced
  • Sized up to 3XL

Shop By Model

O’Neill Women's Reactor II 2mm Short Sleeve Back Zip Spring - $109.95
O’Neill Men's Reactor II 2mm Short Sleeve Back Zip Spring - $109.95

Rashguard and Neoprene Tops

The Roxy Whole Hearted Short Sleeve Rash Guard is an excellent option for ladies who recreate in warmer areas. The rashguard has a fitted design and is offered in women’s specific sizes up to XXL. The soft polyester/elastane fabric blend has a nice stretch for ease of getting it on and off. If you’re looking for a long-sleeve model, we’ve got it in stock here. Both the short-sleeve and long-sleeve tops don’t have a zippered entry, so read further for more options if you’re looking for something that zips up.

If you’re looking for a sleeveless option, look no further than the O’Neill Men’s Original 2mm Full Zip Jacket. For ladies with extra cargo up top, you’ll appreciate the front zip feature. With an affordable price point and an extensive range of sizes, the O’Riginal is a solid recommendation for ladies looking for coverage with easy entry. The O’Riginal is available in sizes up to XXL with a 230-250 lbs. weight range and 48.5-51” chest measurement.

Featuring the exclusive Technobutter 3 neoprene, the O’Neill Reactor II Short Sleeve Jacket is built for comfort and flexibility. The pullover style ensures optimal coverage. In addition, the jacket has a boardshorts connector, so you won’t have to worry about the top flying up when playing around in the water. Like the O’Riginal, the Reactor II is made in men’s specific sizing and works well for ladies up to 230-250 lbs. with a 48.5-51” chest measurement.

Best-Fitting Suit By Body Type

Fruit body type graphic: strawberry shape, banana shape, apple shape, pear shape, and hour glass shape.
Graphic Credit:

Strawberry Shape: Billabong Synergy
Banana Shape: O’Neill Epic and Rip Curl Dawn Patrol
Apple Shape: O’Neill Heat
Pear Shape: Billabong Synergy
Hour Glass Shape: Roxy Swell

Please note that these are merely suggestions. Every wetsuit brand fits differently on each individual body.

Plus Size FAQ

If I am short, do you recommend cutting a wetsuit?

The quick answer is “no.” Most wetsuits come with a 1-3 year warranty, and brands like Patagonia carry a lifetime warranty. Once you take scissors to the suit, it completely voids the warranty on the stitching and seam construction.

Is wetsuit sizing the same as clothing sizing?

Wetsuit sizing runs entirely differently than clothing sizing! Some wetsuit brands start at size “2” and work up from there, whereas others start at size “4”. Many clothing brands start at size “0”. Don’t be surprised if you wear size 4 pants but a size 8 wetsuit! Also important to note; many of the size 12, 14, and 16 wetsuits are the same length for height but get wider throughout the chest, waist, legs, and arms.

How do I know if the wetsuit fits properly?

A wetsuit should generally fit snugly, like a second skin, but not so tight that your range of motion is limited. The sleeves (if full-length) should fall at the wrist bone and the legs just above the ankle bone, and there should be no gaps, pockets, or rolls of neoprene. Wetsuits fit more snugly than clothing and are meant to be form-fitting. You don’t want loose neoprene folds or large pockets of air or water in your wetsuit.

If there isn’t a perfect fitting option for me, what area is the best to sacrifice fit on?

Length: wetsuits function best when they act as a second skin, so they must fit properly to insulate. Wetsuits are designed to trap a thin layer of water between you and your suit so that your body will warm up. It will restrict movement if it is too tight; if it is too loose, it will allow cold water to flush through the suit. It’s best to get a suit that fits through the torso and the circumference of the legs and arms of the suit. Extra material at the end of your wrists or some extra ankle showing will be better than having a baggy or too-tight suit.

I’m curvy at 5’3”, 190 lbs, and 36DDD chest. What spring wetsuit do you recommend?

Look at a Men's O'Neill Reactor II Spring Suit in an XLS. It will fit a bit on the longer side, but that's not such a big deal as long as it fits well throughout your chest and shoulders, which will minimize water flushing into the suit.

I'm 5'5", 195lbs, and have a 34” waist and looking to buy a 5/4 hooded wetsuit. Do you have any suggestions?

Look at a size 16 Hotline Ultra Hot Combo wetsuit. The wetsuit will fit a bit longer on you, but that's not a big deal if it fits well throughout your chest and shoulders. The most critical measurements are height and weight for the best fit.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve made it this far; good for you! We hope you have found something that works for your body type and budget. Sifting through the many options is quite overwhelming. For more reading material, take a look at our Women’s Fit Guide. It’s got a great FAQ section and further guidance on fitting a wetsuit.

Don't hesitate to contact us with any questions. Feel free to drop a comment below, email us at, or call us at 1-888-546-6176.



Originally from the rolling hills of New Hampshire, Sarah now calls Oregon home. She started at Cleanline Surf in 2019 and, since then, has grown into the role of the Customer Service and Blog Manager. When she’s not at work helping dial in customers with surf gear, Sarah is happiest out adventuring. From mellow summer surf sessions to winter splitboard missions to ripping down her favorite mountain bike line, Sarah is always ready to go at the drop of a hat.