Review: Hollis Neotek Wetsuit


*This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

If you’re intending to spend time in any large natural body of water, you’ll want to take advantage of the safety and protection of a wetsuit. Not only does a wetsuit keep the body warm in chilly to potentially freezing waters, it offers increased underwater mobility and bolsters the body against underwater pressure. 
Choosing a good wetsuit can be a complicated process which hinges upon more factors than sizing and cost alone, but it’s an especially crucial one for those looking to do any sort of diving, and remains an essential part of any diving hobbyist’s list of specialized gear. We took a look at some popular brands and compared the pros and cons of their specs to shed some light on which aspects to pay attention to when choosing the right wetsuit for you, with a specific focus on the Hollis Neotek wetsuit. 

What Is The Hollis Neotek Wetsuit?

The Hollis Neotek wetsuit is a high end, well-constructed model that makes use of a plethora of smart design features which contribute to its overall usefulness and protective quality. Its design is versatile and functional as much as it is efficient and durable. 

Product Specs  

The Hollis Neotek wetsuit features an 8/7/6mm composite of compression-resistant and super-flexible neoprene. To keep warm in cold water, it’s designed with an interior liner which traps body heat. Internal dams are implemented at the neck, waist, and ankles to prevent leaks. All seams on the suit are double-glued with blind stitches and additionally sealed with a liquid seam. 
Not only is the physical construction of the suit top-notch among semidry wetsuits, various elements are included to make gearing up for a dive even easier. A hood is included as a standard, along with large thigh pockets on both sides for the purpose of holding tech in place or storing accessories. A horizontal front zipper allows for easy on and off, and is enhanced by a G-Lock design for a watertight barrier. The Hollis Neotek wetsuit is available in nine sizes, ranging from S to 3XL.

Pricing  

The pricing of the wetsuits on this list ranges from $200-$600, with price fluctuating mostly as a result of the quality of the workmanship involved. More effective and technically complex seams, specially designed features such as pockets or internal dams, as well as higher-grade materials tend to up the price, with more inexpensive models usually lacking in those areas. 

How It Compares

We picked a few similar wetsuits available on the market to see how they compare to the Hollis Neotek wetsuit, and made note of their pricing, ease of use, material constitution, stitching, and thickness to make the process of choosing an ideal wetsuit based on the most crucial aspects of any model as easy as possible.      

O’Neill J-Type Wetsuit

Xcel Polar Hydroflex Wetsuit

Aqua Lung SolAfx Wetsuit

Hollis Neotek Wetsuit

With quality construction, sporting various advanced seaming techniques and internal dams, a watertight zipper, and the convenience of spacious pockets, the Hollis Neotek wetsuit is a good choice for those looking for protection and convenience in equal measure. At a mid-range price, it’s difficult to ask more from a wetsuit model.

Price                                                  $$

The Hollis Neotek wetsuit is available at a price point of $450-$500 wherever sportswear is sold, as well as from the manufacturer’s website and other online marketplaces such as Amazon.

Ease of Use                                      5/5

A watertight horizontal zipper for convenient on and off, as well as two large thigh pockets make the Hollis Neotek wetsuit both extremely functional and easily integrable with a diver’s pre-existing gear.

Materials                                           4/5

Compression-resistant and super-stretch neoprene allows for 250% more flexibility than standard neoprene. An integrated thermal lining seals in heat and keeps out the chill.

Stitching                                           4/5

All seams incorporated into the Hollis Neotek wetsuit are double-glued blind stitches and are liquid-sealed for extensive water resistance and durability. 

Thickness                                         4/5

The Hollis Neotek wetsuit sports a 8/7/6mm thickness for increased cold resistance and durability.

Pros

  • Thigh pockets can be used to hold gear or accessories          
  • Durable, advanced stitching
  • Highly flexible material

Cons

  • Zipper can be finnicky
https://www.amazon.com/Hollis-Scuba-Diving-Neotek-Semi-Drysuit/dp/B017S9S4IU/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?ie=UTF8&qid=1541535994&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=hollis+neotek+semi-drysuit&psc=1

O’Neill J-Type Wetsuit

This affordably priced wetsuit doesn’t skimp on protection, offering a slight form, strong water seal, and durability with a minimal amount of seams. Designed for use in very cold water, this light yet warm wetsuit makes use of Ultraflex DS neoprene, contributing to a supple yet strong constitution with a 5mm thick envelope of Firewall fabric to trap heat to the body. As the suit is nearly seamless and completely without stitches, leaking is essentially an impossibility. The neck, wrists, and ankles are sealed with watertight GlideSkin O’ring cuffs.

One of the aspects of this wetsuit that stands out from the group most is its fully integrated ‘John’ interior layer, which refers to an additional core of neoprene fabric for extra thermal protection where the body needs it most. The ‘John’ interior layer is 12mm thick, while the remainder of the suit is 7mm. This two-layer construction results in an increased range of motion without compromising core insulation. This model is an excellent choice for those seeking a light, flexible, highly insulated wetsuit for use in very cold waters.

Price                                                 $

The O’Neill J-Type wetsuit is available at a price point of $220-$450 wherever sportswear is sold, as well as from the manufacturer’s website and other online marketplaces such as Amazon.

Ease of Use                                     3/5

As a light, single-piece unit with a ‘John’ interior layer incorporated into the central body of the suit, this model is convenient in storage and use. However, the zipper is horizontally oriented on the back of the wetsuit, which is slightly less than ideal for getting in and out of solo.

Materials                                          4/5

Ultraflex DS neoprene is layered with a thick envelope of Firewall fabric, making it both a good insulator and highly durable.

Stitching                                          5/5

Interestingly, this wetsuit is without a single stitch. This, along with a minimal amount of glue-sealed seams, makes for a virtually leak-proof design.

Thickness                                        4/5

The suit itself has a 7mm thickness, which contributes to its lightness. However, the interior ‘John’ layer has a 12mm thickness, protecting the body’s core from cold.

Pros

  • Inexpensive option
  • Stitchless design prevents unnecessary points of potential leakage
  • Interior ‘John’ layer protects core without sacrificing mobility

Cons

  • No thigh pockets 
  • Horizontal back zipper makes this model difficult to put on solo
https://www.amazon.com/ONeill-J-Type-Wetsuit-Black-X-Large/dp/B005XXC4NK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541536224&sr=8-1&keywords=O’neill+J-type+wetsuit&dpID=31QDZMQQrpL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

Xcel Polar Hydroflex Wetsuit

This mid-range wetsuit delivers a plethora of cold water protection features specifically designed with cold-resistance and high mobility in mind. It is constructed with Ultrastretch neoprene backed with foam for decreased absorption, increased durability, and high amounts of stretch and flex. A secondary layer of Thermo-bamboo neoprene, created with bamboo charcoal fibers and recycled polyester, seals in body heat. 
The zipper is located across the upper body, and is easily accessible for quick on and off. It features a glued and blindstitched neck dam which sits between the zipper and the wearer’s skin. Further ease of accessibility is added with the incorporation of ankle zippers combined with GlideSkin dams, which glide over and then bind against the wearer’s skin, contributing both to an ease of entry and the creation of a watertight seal simultaneously. The same seals are used in the wrists, making it an extremely easy wetsuit to put on and take off.
Durability and mobility are offered with articulating knee panels which minimize wear by allowing the wetsuit to bend easily at its most frequently stressed points. This wetsuit has a thickness composition of 8/7/6mm. 

Price                                                   $$

The Xcel Polar Hydroflex wetsuit is available at a price point of $350-$400 wherever sportswear is sold, as well as from the manufacturer’s website and other online marketplaces such as Amazon.

Ease of Use                                       5/5

The horizontal shoulder-to-shoulder zipper, as well as the ankle zippers, makes this wetsuit breeze to get in and out of. The self-sealing GlideSkin dams further alleviate concerns both of getting into the suit and keeping water out.

Materials                                           5/5

The inclusion of flexible, articulating knee panels ensures that the charcoal and polyester blend of heat trapping material will last a long time before showing any signs of wear and tear. Tightly woven Ultrastretch neoprene keeps water out.

Stitching                                          3/5

The seams of this wetsuit are glued and blindstitched, meaning the needle doesn’t fully penetrate the neoprene. However, an abundance of seams across the wetsuit leaves an ever-present chance of leakage after extensive usage.

Thickness                                        4/5

This wetsuit sports a 8/7/6mm thickness for increased cold resistance and durability.

Pros

  • Easy on and off with horizontal shoulder-to-shoulder and ankle zippers
  • Thermo-bamboo layer made with recycled and naturally sourced materials
  • High mobility and durability with articulated ankle pads

Cons

  • Large amount of seams 
  • No thigh pockets
https://www.amazon.com/Polar-Hydroflex-Hooded-Diving-Wetsuit/dp/B00EBX2HKI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541536534&sr=8-1&keywords=Xcel+polar+hydroflex

Aqua Lung SolAfx Wetsuit

This high-end wetsuit offers a plethora of unique features whilst building upon features found in the above models. The model consists of environmentally friendly neoprene, is made without Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and without petroleum-based materials, and is woven with REACH-certified thread. The zipper is a horizontal, front-facing shoulder-to-shoulder design with a high amount of water resistance. 
A feature unique to this model is a no-slip shoulder design, ensuring that shoulder straps stay right where you want them when diving. The attached hood possesses venting technology which allows trapped exhaust bubbles to be released from the wetsuit without letting in cold water. The arms and legs are pre-bent to avoid bunching material at the joints, and abrasion-resistant kneepads increase the overall durability of the wetsuit considerably. Gaskets seal the forearms and calves, and a water dam covers the neck and shoulders. 
This wetsuit is 8mm in thickness on the torso, and 7mm on the arms and legs to enhance flexibility. It is available in sizes ranging from XS to 3XL.

Price                                                 $$$

The Aqua Lung SolAfx wetsuit is available at a price point of $560-$600 wherever sportswear is sold, as well as from the manufacturer’s website and other online marketplaces such as Amazon.

Ease of Use                                      5/5

Functionality to reduce and efficiently remove trapped air bubbles, coupled with pre-bent arms and legs and knee pads make this wetsuit very accommodating. The no-slip shoulders are a brilliant addition. 

Materials                                          4/5 

Environmentally friendly materials free of harmful chemicals and petroleum-based materials ensure you’re being good to the ocean as you enjoy it. However, it likely won’t be as warm in extremely cold water as the above wetsuits.

Stitching                                          3/5

The seams of this wetsuit are glued and blindstitched, meaning the needle doesn’t fully penetrate the neoprene. However, an abundance of seams across the wetsuit leaves an ever-present chance of leakage after extensive usage.

Thickness                                        4/5

This wetsuit sports a 8/7mm thickness, balanced for increased mobility.

Pros

  • No-slip shoulder design
  • Specially designed hood prevents trapped respirator bubbles 
  • Environmentally friendly materials

Cons

  • Not specifically tailored for use in extremely cold waters
  • No thigh pockets
https://www.amazon.com/Aqua-Lung-Solafx-Mens-Wetsuit/dp/B0741MDL84/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1541536785&sr=8-2&keywords=Aqualung+solafx+wetsuit&dpID=31ULsOk5gAL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

Conclusion

Although it may seem like going for the most expensive wetsuit will naturally grant you the most durable, efficient, and user-friendly wetsuit, this isn’t always the case. Considering your goals as a consumer is the first and most important part of selecting the best wetsuit for your future dives, as factors varying from mobility restrictions to heat retention can change entirely in their relevance and importance to your selection based on where, when, and how you intend to dive. 

If simply getting in and out of your wetsuit is a primary concern, choosing one with a front-facing, horizontally oriented shoulder-to-shoulder zipper is crucial, and additional ankle zippers are helpful. If you want to stay as warm as possible, choosing a wetsuit that will effectively insulate your body’s core with an internal ‘John’ layer is a smart move, but it’s important to remember that the additional thickness of the material will in turn add to the overall bulkiness of the wetsuit. If your focus is on how well your wetsuit works with your current gear, it’d be wise to consider models that offer such features as no-slip shoulders or thigh pockets.
We hope that laying out the specs and design quality of the Hollis Neotek wetsuit and others and comparing and contrasting their various unique features has helped you clarify what you see as necessary in your wetsuit. The variations may be subtle, but when you’re dozens of feet below the surface of the water, it’s the details that make a world of difference.  
 

Recent Posts