O'Neill Ninja Wetsuit Review
After dominating the high-end wetsuit market the past several years with the likes of the Psychotech and Hyperfreak, O’Neill created a competitively priced mid-level full suit. We are pleased to introduce the O’Neill Ninja wetsuit, available in men’s, women’s, and youth models. This suit includes several beloved features, such as the insulating Fluid Flex Firewall and durable yet stretchy Ultra Flex neoprene. Don’t miss your chance to get a wetsuit with the quality you’d expect from the world’s oldest wetsuit manufacturer at a very reasonable price.
Highlights and Features
- Affordable price point
- Durable, long-lasting neoprene
- Covered under O’Neill’s 1-year warranty
- Variety of thicknesses for men, women, and youth
- Pre-fed zipper for easy zipping shut
- Fits true to size
- Men’s O’Neill Ninja 5/4 Hooded Chest Zip - $329.95
- Men’s O’Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip - $299.95
- Men’s O’Neill Ninja 3/2 Chest Zip - $289.95
- Women’s O’Neill Ninja 5/4 Hooded Chest Zip - $329.95
- Women’s O’Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip - $279.95
- Women’s O’Neill Ninja 3/2 Chest Zip - $259.95
- Youth O’Neill Ninja 5/4 Chest Zip - $239.95
- Youth O’Neill Ninja 4/3 Chest Zip - $209.95
Neoprene and Liners
The O’Neill Ninja is composed of UltraFlex neoprene for ideal freedom of movement. UltraFlex neoprene is utilized in the arms, shoulders, entry, side panels, and legs for maximum flexibility. Though not quite as flexible as the Technobutter suits, I am starting to wonder if they named this suit the Ninja because it is sneaky flexible. You can expect more durability from the UltraFlex neoprene as it is more resilient to nicks and tears.
The suit features a smooth skin panel on the back panel. This wind-proof exterior is lined with a water-wicking thermal “Firewall” jersey. This not only keeps you warm in adverse conditions, but the hydrophobic liner remains lightweight and doesn't absorb water, preventing you from getting bogged down.
Seams and Stitching
Each O’Neill Ninja wetsuit uses triple glued and blindstitched seams. GBS seams are often found on mid-level suits: offering the necessary warmth protection at an affordable price. The seam construction creates a watertight and durable seam and allows for the maximum amount of stretch possible. In addition, internal UltraFlex tape covers most of the suit’s inner seams, further solidifying the seal.
Finally, O'Neill implemented Strategic Seamless Paddle Zones for maximum comfort. The Ninja uses larger panels in the zones where you use the most movement, so you’ll never feel discomfort from a seam rubbing against your skin. The result is a suit that doesn’t break the bank while incorporating high-end design features.
Fit and Cut
The O’Neill Ninja is no different from the Psychotech and Hyperfreak in terms of fit and cut. I love how O’Neill suits have more of an American cut, meaning they tend to fit those who have broader shoulders and more mass (be it muscle or not). The size chart is spot on here, so there shouldn’t be any surprises regarding fit.
If you are between sizes, O’Neill is one of the brands where sometimes it’s safe to size down. The tall sizes fit leaner builds better, so keep your body type in mind, especially when you’re in between, say, an L or LT.
Entry and Zipper
The Ninja wetsuit utilizes O’Neill’s beloved Front Upper Zip Entry (F.U.Z.E.) system, which is best known for its ease when putting the suit on and taking off. The F.U.Z.E. uses a floating panel and an anti-flush barrier with drain holes that keep you dry even if water penetrates the suit during a bad wipeout.
The O’Neill Ninja zipper does not fully dislocate, meaning the zipper is pre-fed. Pro tip: the pre-fed zippers are a game changer for cold water surfers. No more fumbling around with trying to line up your zipper on those frigid morning surfs.
The combination of features on the O’Neill Ninja makes for a flexible and warm suit. It's surprisingly relaxed for a suit that doesn’t incorporate the high-end Technobutter neoprene. The glued and blindstitched seams maximize the UltraFlex neoprene’s stretch, while the taped interior adds to the suit's warmth. The Firewall liner in the chest and thighs is an added bonus to keep you surfing on even the coldest of winter days. Finally, the suit has a Glideskin neck seal that keeps water out while remaining comfortable on your neck.
Value and Durability
Topping out at $329.95 for the 5mm model, the O’Neill Ninja is the least expensive hooded suit offered in O’Neill’s lineup. Because of the lack of Technobutter neoprene that other O’Neill suits offer, the Ninja does leave a little to be desired in the flexibility department. However, the UltraFlex neoprene is far more durable, so there is no reason you should not expect multiple seasons out of this suit before you need to purchase a replacement.
“I'm happy with this wetsuit so far; a great choice for cold am sessions in Southern California. Very flexible, and the seams seem pretty solid so far. I like the O'Neill chest zip design, where the zipper stays engaged. The models with the zipper that comes off are horrible when my fingers are numb.”- Pep
“This is the comfiest wetsuit I’ve ever been in. After decades of surfing, I’ve been through wetsuits. This O’Neill Ninja feels so thin, so warm, and stretchy. It’s amazing. I love it. The chest zip feels like it’s made well. It’s just always complicated getting in these things.”- Sunrise Mama
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The Ninja wetsuit is a great mid-level suit for any surfer wanting O’Neill’s legendary quality without shelling out $500. The suit may not be the most flexible or warmest on the market, but it is competitive in both categories. Factor in its durability and price tag below $330, and you’re looking at one of the best values out there. Whether you are a hardcore surfer on a budget or a relatively new surfer looking for a quality rubber that will last for years, the O’Neill Ninja is the perfect suit for you.
If you have any questions about O'Neill suits or need sizing help, feel free to leave a comment, call us at 1-888-546-6176, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy the water!