Does a Rash Guard Keep You Warm

What is a Rash Guard?

A rash guard is a tight fitting shirt, usually made of spandex or Lycra, that is worn by surfers, swimmers, and other athletes to protect their skin from the sun, wind, and salt water. Rash guards can also be worn by people who want to avoid getting a sunburn or chafing.

How Does a Rash Guard Work?

The material of a rash guard is designed to keep your skin from coming into contact with the sun’s rays. However, it can also keep you warm in colder weather. The tighter the fit, the more likely it is to keep you warm.

The Science Behind Rash Guards

The science behind rash guards is pretty simple. Rash guards are made from a material that is designed to wick away moisture, whether it’s from your skin or from the water. This material is usually a synthetic polymer like polyester or nylon.

When you sweat, your body produces a liquid called perspiration. This perspiration is mostly water, but it also contains electrolytes like sodium and potassium. As the perspiration evaporates off of your skin, it cools your body down.

Rash guards work by wicking away the perspiration before it has a chance to evaporate. This means that your body stays cooler for longer, and you don’t have to worry about the uncomfortable feeling of wet clothes clinging to your skin.

Rash guards are also effective at keeping you warm in cold weather. The material used in rash guards is often thicker than regular swimwear, which helps to protect you from the wind and cold water.

Do Rash Guards Keep You Warm?

Rash guards are a type of swimwear that can be worn in both warm and cold weather. They are made of a variety of materials, including neoprene, lycra, and spandex. Rash guards can come in short sleeve, long sleeve, or even sleeveless styles. So, do rash guards keep you warm?

The Pros of Wearing a Rash Guard

There are several pros to wearing a rash guard while surfing, kitesurfing, wakeboarding, SUPing, snorkeling, or any other water activity. The main benefit is that it protects your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Rash guards can have either long or short sleeves, and they are often made with SPF protection built into the fabric.

Another pro of wearing a rash guard is that it can help prevent scrapes and scratches. If you fall while surfing or kitesurfing, for example, a rash guard will help protect your skin from being scraped on the sand or on the rocks. Rash guards can also help prevent cuts and bruises if you hit yourself with your board or if you’re hit by another surfer.

A third benefit of rash guards is that they can keep you warm in cold water. If you wear a wetsuit, you may still feel cold when you first get into the water. But if you wear a rash guard under your wetsuit, it will help keep your body heat in and the cold water out. Rash guards are also good to wear in warm water because they prevent jellyfish stings and sunburns.

The Cons of Wearing a Rash Guard

There are a few cons to wearing a rash guard while surfing. One is that you will likely get hotter than if you were just wearing a swimsuit. This is because the rash guard material does not allow your body to breathe as well as a swimsuit would. As a result, you might find yourself taking more breaks in between waves to cool down. Another con is that rash guards can be more expensive than simply buying a swimsuit. However, if you plan on surfing often, a rash guard may end up being a wise investment because it will protect your skin from the sun and from Surfboard Wax.

How to Choose the Right Rash Guard

Wondering if a rash guard will keep you warm in the water? It’s a common question, and the answer isn’t as simple as you might think. The truth is, it depends on a few factors, including the material the rash guard is made of, the thickness of the fabric, and the fit. In this article, we’ll break down everything you need to know about rash guards and how to choose the right one for you.

Consider the Material

When choosing a rash guard, the first thing you want to consider is the material. Most rash guards are made from either polyester or nylon. Both of these materials are quick-drying, so they’ll keep you comfortable even if you start to sweat.

Polyester is a synthetic fabric, so it’s less breathable than nylon. However, it’s cheaper and more durable, so it’s a good choice if you’re on a budget. Nylon is more expensive, but it’s also more comfortable and breathable.

Consider the Fit

Most importantly, you’ll want to make sure that the rash guard fits well. A rash guard that is too tight will be uncomfortable, especially when wet. A Rash guard that is too loose will not provide the level of sun protection that you need and can also become a problem if it gets caught on something while you’re surfing or swimming.

There are a few things to keep in mind when considering the fit of a rash guard:

  • The width of the shoulders should be proportional to the width of the torso.
  • The length of the sleeves should come down to at least the middle of your bicep.
  • If you plan on wearing the rash guard primarily for sun protection, then you may want to consider a style with a higher neckline that will offer more coverage.
  • For added comfort, some rash guards have flatlock stitching, which helps to reduce chafing.

Consider the Style

Rash guards come in a variety of styles, each designed to provide different levels of warmth and protection. Long sleeve rash guards offer the most coverage, followed by short sleeve, then sleeveless.

If you’re looking for a rash guard to keep you warm in the water, a long sleeve style will provide the most coverage and insulation. If you’re looking for a rash guard to wear during high-intensity activities like surfing or stand up paddle boarding, a short sleeve or sleeveless style will provide the most mobility and breathability.

Rash Guard Alternatives

A rash guard is a type of swimwear that is designed to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Rash guards can also be worn as a layer of protection against the cold. However, they are not always the best option for keeping you warm in the water. There are a few alternatives to rash guards that can better protect you from the cold.


Wetsuits are made of a stretchy rubbery material, usually neoprene, and they fit snugly against your skin to trap a layer of water next to your body. This layer of water is warmed by your body heat and provides insulation, so you stay warm even when you’re swimming in cold water. Wetsuits are used by surfers, divers, and windsurfers in chilly waters, as well as by Navy SEALs and other members of the military.


Drysuits are a type of waterproof clothing worn by boaters, divers, kayakers, canoeists and other water sports enthusiasts. They are designed to keep the wearer’s entire body dry, even in the most extreme weather conditions. Drysuits are made with a variety of different materials, including neoprene, polyurethane, polyester and Gore-Tex.

Drysuits are available in a variety of styles, including full-body suits, two-piece suits and coveralls. They can be purchased from a variety of online and brick-and-mortar retailers. Prices for drysuits vary depending on the style, material and brand.

If you’re looking for an alternative to rash guards, drysuits are a great option. They will keep you warm in the coldest waters and dry in the heaviest rain.

Swim Jackets

Swim jackets are very similar to Rash Guards in that they are both made from Lycra and provide UPF 50+ sun protection, but there are some key differences. Swim jackets have a neoprene core which makes them thicker than Rash Guards, and therefore also much warmer. They are also less flexible, which can make them more uncomfortable to swim in for extended periods of time.

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