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a person swimming in the water

Scuba diving attire can make or break an experience.

Think about what to wear under a wetsuit so you can have the best dive possible.

Deciding what to wear under a wetsuit can be as integral to your diving experience as choosing the right diving spot. For ensuring the best possible dive, one must pay close attention to the underlayers that accompany the wetsuit. Wetsuits are a common choice for scuba divers. Their dual ability to preserve body heat and safeguard against potential sunburns and sea hazards makes them a mainstay in the scuba diver’s wardrobe. Even in warm weather or surface water temperatures, the deeper waters can hold a surprising chill. Hence, wetsuits are more of a necessity than an option.

Yet, the question lingers – what should one wear beneath their wetsuit while scuba diving? The answer to this isn’t quite clear cut and varies among divers. Let’s delve into the diverse viewpoints on this matter.

1. Board Shorts

a man flying through the air while riding a wave in the ocean

Board shorts, the quintessential beachwear for men, may seem like the natural choice for an underlayer when suiting up for a dive. However, as you plunge into the realm of scuba diving, you’ll find that board shorts aren’t as practical as they might initially appear. Despite their popularity on the sands of North Shore Oahu, board shorts have a notorious reputation underwater. They are loose-fitting and can easily scrunch and wrinkle under the tight confines of a wetsuit. After squeezing into your suit, the last thing you want to be doing is wriggling around, trying to smooth out your shorts!

But the inconvenience of board shorts doesn’t end there. In some unfortunate cases, these unruly bunches of fabric can evolve into a significant hazard. There have been rare but noteworthy instances where twisted and scrunched board shorts have constricted a diver’s legs, impeding circulation and triggering the feared decompression sickness. While the chances of this happening are minimal, it’s a risk not worth taking.

So, before you grab your trusty pair of board shorts for your next scuba diving adventure in the tropical waters around North Shore Oahu, remember: the best choices are not always the most obvious ones. Find the right balance between comfort, safety, and practicality to ensure your diving experience is nothing short of spectacular.

2. Bikinis or One-Piece Women’s Swimsuits

Woman on beach in bathing suit to wear under a wetsuit

For the adventurous women ready to explore the vibrant depths of North Shore Oahu, bikinis or one-piece swimsuits are often the best choices as undergarments for your diving suit. Their form-fitting design makes them an ally in the water, as they adhere to your body’s contours and stay in place as you don your wetsuit.

Embracing simplicity in your swimsuit can significantly enhance your diving experience. Remember, your wetsuit should fit snugly. Any intricate knots, ornamental beads, or other protruding decorations can become pressure points when you’re enclosed in the tight embrace of your wetsuit. These embellishments can become irksome and may cause discomfort or even pain when you’re deep beneath the surface, entranced by the marine spectacle around you.

Typically, a swimmer’s athletic-style swimsuit hits the mark perfectly. It’s designed for performance and comfort, ensuring nothing distracts from your underwater exploration.

Here’s a gem of advice that could save you some hassle: If you prefer a string bikini, make sure to knot the string bikini tops to the side. This tactical move will keep the knots clear of the wetsuit’s zipper line, ensuring a smooth and unhindered suit-up process. So, ladies, as you prepare for your scuba diving adventure in the warm Pacific waters, keep these tips in mind and dive into the experience with confidence and comfort!

3. Speedos

a turtle swimming under water

For men preparing to plunge into the crystal clear waters of Oahu’s North Shore, the iconic Speedo swimsuit is a reliable choice for under your wetsuit. Its compact design with minimal fabric ensures it won’t bunch up or shift, providing an ideal balance of comfort and functionality while diving.

The Speedo is slim-fitting, allowing your wetsuit to glide effortlessly over it during the suiting-up process. Once you’re in the water, its sleek design won’t hinder your movements, ensuring you’re free to swim, twist, and turn to marvel at Oahu’s spectacular underwater sights.

Let’s address the elephant on the dive boat – yes, Speedos can be revealing. Some gents might feel a bit self-conscious sporting them around the dive shop or while waiting their turn to dive. But remember, comfort and safety in the water trump fashion on the deck. That said, there’s an easy workaround. You can maintain your modesty and comfort by wearing a pair of loose shorts over your Speedo. Keep them on until it’s time to zip up your wetsuit. That way, you’re ready to dive into your North Shore adventure with confidence and all the comfort you need. After all, the focus should be on the fascinating marine life, not your choice of swimwear!

4. Go Commando (No photo for this one!)

We’ve covered board shorts, Speedos, bikinis, and one-pieces, but there’s one more option that some adventurous divers might consider – going full commando! Yes, you read it right. Ditching the undergarments entirely can eliminate the hassle of bunching, twisting, and chafing that might accompany other clothing items.

Now, before you enthusiastically nod and start unzipping your wetsuit, let’s consider the fine print of this au naturel approach. Remember that all that separates you from the surrounding world is that thin layer of neoprene. Out of the water, this can lead to some, let’s say, “unexpected breezes” or show-and-tell moments that you might not have planned for.

Not all diving locations come with plush changing rooms or secluded spots. That adds an additional layer of complexity, particularly when you need to strip down or gear up. Imagine trying to balance on one foot while attempting to slip into a wetsuit without flashing everyone around you – it might just be the most challenging part of your diving trip!

So, while going commando may seem like a liberating idea (and may provide a fun story for the after-dive banter), remember to consider the logistics and potential blush-factor. As always, the choice is entirely yours – it’s your diving adventure after all! And if you do decide to go commando, just remember to shout ‘aloha’ to the North Shore Oahu sea life in true free-spirited style!

Be cautious with this decision! 😉

It’s really up to you!

And of course, what it comes down to is you. You want to be comfortable, so avoid dangly, overly decorated swim suits. Reduce the amount of fabric as much as possible (and as much as you are comfortable with.) Make sure it fits properly, and make sure you feel comfortable in it. Ultimately, what you wear under a wetsuit when scuba diving is whatever makes you feel best.