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What to Wear When You Go Snorkeling

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If you are going on vacation to somewhere around an ocean or a large body of water, then you may be considering going snorkeling as one of your vacation activities. Who wouldn’t want to be under water looking at underwater life?

But you may be asking the question, “What should I wear snorkeling?” If you are considering going snorkeling, there are a few things that you should purchase, or should consider purchasing, before you begin. Let’s get into what to wear snorkeling!


There are some things that you should definitely purchase before you head out into the water.

1. Swimming suit or board shorts

Clearly, you are going to need aquatic clothing if you are going into the water. When purchasing something to wear while snorkeling, you should beware of things that are too baggy. If you wear something too baggy, you may get caught on a stray piece of coral or rocks, and that would be a tragedy!

2. Snorkel and Mask

This piece of gear is in the title of the activity, so it must be important, right? A snorkel is a tube that helps the wearer breathe while underwater. It is commonly combined with a mask, which allows for easy wear, as well as vision. The mask also serves as goggles for the snorkeler so that they are able to see all of the wonderful things that live under the water!

3. Sunscreen

You are going into the water to have fun, not to turn into a tomato! When purchasing sunscreen for snorkeling, make sure that you are buying waterproof sunscreen so that you can make sure it doesn’t wash off! You should also look for reef safe sunscreen like Thinksport SPF 50 Plus (link to Amazon) to help keep the reefs and marine life healthy. You’re certainly going to need sunscreen to cover any exposed skin, however, wearing a rash guard is a great way to cut down on how much you need to use.


There are some supplies that you do not need to snorkel, but they can make the experience a lot more enjoyable! A lot of professionals recommend these products to aid in the snorkeling experience, but they are by no means required.

1. Wetsuit or Rash guard

A wetsuit is a full body form of protection. They come in different lengths, but the main idea is always the same. It usually is one piece, much like a romper or jumpsuit. A wetsuit can provide thermal insulation, as well as protection from the elements around you in the water. A rash guard is just a shirt or vest version of a wetsuit. It is intended to help protect against abrasion or the elements, but also from factors such as sunburn. If preferred, a rash guard can be worn underneath a wetsuit.

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2. Fins

If you have ever wanted to look like a duck, then fins are perfect for you. But those are not their primary function. Fins were created to help with swimming. They are known to help with endurance and strength, helping you to keep snorkeling for longer! If you decide to use fins, there are some things that you should think about before purchasing them. You should think about the length. The most common length used for snorkeling is long. You should also consider open or closed heel, how stiff the fin is, and if you would like a silicone or rubber fin. A silicone fin will irritate your skin a lot less, and also help with kick fluidity.


These are some things that are not required, and you definitely do not need them to go snorkeling. But if you would like some extra help or if you would like to increase your comfort while snorkeling, you may want to consider purchasing some of these materials.

1. Neoprene Socks

These are socks made out of similar materials to a wetsuit. If you are worried about your fins rubbing against your feet while swimming, then you should consider buying neoprene socks. If you bought rubber fins, they are more likely to rub, and then you are more likely to need neoprene socks. But like we said earlier, silicone fins will irritate you less, and then you are going to be less likely to need neoprene socks. They can also help to insulate heat if you are swimming in a particularly cold body of water.

2. Snorkeling Vest

This falls under the extras category, but if you are a poor swimmer, this is going to be essential. A snorkeling vest usually comes in bright orange or yellow, and is a floatation device. It is similar to a life jacket, but obviously is optimized for snorkeling. A lot of snorkeling vests are adjustable so that you can change the amount of buoyancy within it. While these can help you if you are a poor swimmer, they can keep you from going to certain depths in the water. If you are wearing a snorkeling vest, you are not going to be able to go deep in the water at all.

3. Swim Cap

Swim caps can be very helpful if you have really long hair, or hair that is prone to getting in your face. But while they can help keep hair out of your face and snorkel mask, it can also help you to protect your scalp from sun exposure. Nobody wants to drench their scalp in sunscreen, so a swim cap is a simple way to prevent sunscreen on the scalp. They may also be able to help reduce drag in your swimming, helping to increase speed.


Snorkeling can be a lot of fun if you make sure that you have the correct equipment! While not all of these things are necessary, if you want to have the most comfortable experience, it may be nice to have them! But if you are just looking to go snorkeling one time, it may not be worth it to purchase all of these things. Consider going snorkeling one time, and then if you really enjoy it, you can think about purchasing more supplies!

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