What To Wear Kayaking In Warm Weather

  • By: Josh Rosenberg
  • Date: July 25, 2023
  • Time to read: 8 min.

Kayaking in warm weather can be a great adventure! It’s important to dress appropriately for comfort and safety. Consider lightweight and breathable materials, like nylon or polyester. These dry quickly and wick away moisture, helping you stay cool and dry. Clothing with UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating is also essential to shield your skin from harmful UV rays.

It’s wise to dress in layers too. So you can adjust when the temperature drops or if you get wet suddenly. Don’t forget about proper footwear, like water shoes or sandals. These provide good grip and let water drain easily. Regular sneakers and bulky shoes are not recommended as they become cumbersome when wet.

Also, wear a hat and sunglasses for sun protection. The hat keeps sweat out of your eyes and enhances visibility. Polarized lenses in the sunglasses cut down glare off the surface of the water, so you can see clearly. So there you have it – the best clothing options for kayaking in warm weather!

General Clothing

To ensure you’re properly dressed for kayaking in warm weather, opt for the right clothing. Stay comfortable and protected with quick-drying shorts and shirts, a rash guard or sun-protective shirt, and suitable water shoes or sandals. This section will detail the benefits of each clothing choice for an enjoyable kayaking experience.

Quick-drying Shorts and Shirt

Quick-drying shorts and shirts are must-haves for adventurers. They’re designed to wick away moisture, keeping you cool and comfortable in the outdoors. Versatile and lightweight, these garments pull sweat away from your body and dry fast. Plus, they come in a range of designs and colors.

Need a pro tip? Pack a spare set – they guarantee comfort all day long! And don’t forget a rash guard – perfect for showing off your irresistibly pasty skin!

Rash Guard or Sun-protective Shirt

A rash guard or sun-protective shirt is a must-have when it comes to protecting your skin from the sun. These garments have a UPF rating of 50+ and are made of nylon/spandex. They are designed to fit tight and provide high breathability.

The loose-fitting design of a sun-protective shirt offers less coverage, but still provides protection against UV rays. It is made of polyester/cotton and has a UPF rating of 30. Its breathability is medium.

A rash guard is great for water activities like surfing or swimming, due to its tight-fitting design that allows for excellent mobility. My friend recently went on vacation to a tropical destination and was able to avoid sunburn thanks to wearing a rash guard.

Water shoes or sandals at the beach are a great way to avoid foot hygiene until your feet look like a science experiment!

Water Shoes or Sandals

Are you trying to decide what to wear for aquatic activities? Look no further than water shoes or sandals! These options provide comfort and functionality for wet environments. Water shoes have a special sole that helps you stay stable on slippery surfaces, and they dry quickly. Plus, some come with a toe guard to protect against sharp objects. They come in various styles and designs, so you’ll find the perfect pair for you.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when choosing water shoes:

  • Get a snug fit
  • Look for adjustable straps
  • Choose shoes made from durable materials

Equip yourself with a reliable pair of water shoes or sandals and you’ll be ready to take on the great outdoors!

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

personal protective equipment

To ensure your safety and comfort when kayaking in warm weather, equip yourself with the necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). This includes wearing a Life Jacket or Personal Flotation Device (PFD) to stay afloat and safe in the water. Additionally, don a Waterproof Hat or Visor to shield yourself from the sun’s rays and keep your head dry throughout your kayaking adventure.

Life Jacket or Personal Flotation Device (PFD)

A Life Jacket, or Personal Flotation Device (PFD), is an essential item for water activities. It helps keep you safe by providing buoyancy and keeping you afloat. Here are some key details about life jackets:

BuoyancyEnough flotation to keep your head above water
MaterialDurable, waterproof materials like nylon or neoprene
AdjustabilityStraps and buckles to fit different body sizes
TypesDifferent designs for different water activities, like boating and kayaking

Plus, life jackets often have reflective strips for visibility in dark conditions. They are also brightly colored for easy spotting. Choose the right type of PFD for your water activity.

Pro Tip: Always check your life jacket before use and make sure it fits properly. That way, it’ll be the most effective in an emergency. If you think a hat or visor looks silly, wait until you see how ridiculous you look with a virus!

Also Read: Are Life Jackets Required for Kayaking?

Waterproof Hat or Visor

A waterproof hat or visor can be a great asset when it comes to protection from various elements. It shields from rain, snow, and UV rays. Whether you’re working or enjoying the outdoors, this piece of PPE brings practicality and style.

Here are some key features of a waterproof hat or visor:

  • Waterproof material: Keeps your head dry in wet conditions.
  • UV protection: Shields your face from harmful sun rays.
  • Adjustable strap: Ensures a secure fit for all head sizes.
  • Wide brim: Provides additional coverage from rain and sun.

Plus, they’re often made from lightweight materials, making them comfortable to wear for long periods. And some designs incorporate breathable fabrics to prevent excessive sweating.

I experienced firsthand the benefits of a waterproof hat. During a mountain hike, I encountered unexpected rainfall that lasted for hours. I was wearing a waterproof hat with a wide brim. It kept me dry and the brim prevented rain from dripping onto my neck. That essential accessory allowed me to enjoy the scenery without discomfort. Sunscreen is also important for sun protection.

Sun Protection

To ensure adequate sun protection while kayaking in warm weather, equip yourself with the right gear. In this section, we will cover the essentials to shield yourself from harmful rays. Discover the benefits of wearing sunglasses and the importance of applying sunscreen throughout your kayaking adventure.


Features of Sunglasses!

  • Protection: Sunglasses provide protection against harmful UV rays.
  • Style: Sunglasses are a trendy accessory.
  • Durability: Sunglasses are long-lasting and built to withstand regular use.
  • Cost: Sunglasses are affordable and come in various price ranges.

Plus, they come in many lens colors!

Sam Foster invented sunglasses in the early 20th century. For beachgoers, it became an accessory.

Sunscreen – Better to smell like coconuts than have raisin-like skin!


  1. SPF: Go for higher SPF sunscreens. They offer better protection against UVB rays.
  2. Broad Spectrum: Choose sunscreens that guard against both UVA and UVB rays.
  3. Water Resistance: Pick water-resistant sunscreens for long-lasting protection when participating in outdoor activities or swimming.
  4. Application: Apply sunscreen evenly on all exposed areas of the body, such as the face, neck, and ears.
  5. Reapplication: Reapply sunscreen every two hours. Or, if sweating heavily or after swimming, reapply more often.

Don’t forget! UV rays can also penetrate through clouds. So, it’s best to apply sunscreen even on cloudy days.

The Skin Cancer Foundation says that using an SPF 15 or higher sunscreen routinely reduces the risk of squamous cell carcinoma by about 40%.

For extra protection, wear sunglasses and hats. But, if you want to avoid those awkward tan lines, sunscreen is a must.

Optional Accessories

To enhance your kayaking experience in warm weather, equip yourself with optional accessories like a hat or cap, a waterproof phone case, and a waterproof bag. These additions will provide practical solutions to protect yourself from the sun, keep your phone safe and dry, and secure your belongings while you paddle.

Hat or Cap

The decision between a hat or cap can make a statement about personal style. Let’s delve into the details of these two headwear options! Here’s a breakdown of their features:


  • Wide brim for sun protection
  • Many styles, like fedora, bucket hat, and floppy hat
  • Suitable for formal occasions


  • Smaller brim, or none at all
  • Often adjustable with a strap or snapback closure
  • Popular casual option

Plus, hats are usually made of straw, felt, or fabric, while caps are crafted from cotton or synthetic materials. This lets people pick headwear based on their preferences and the weather.

An iconic fashion designer credits their success to always wearing a signature hat. This shows that the choice between a hat or cap is more than just covering up – it conveys expression, protects from elements, and even channels inspiration. So next time you’re choosing headwear, remember these aspects and make your decision wisely!

Waterproof Phone Case

A waterproof phone case is a must-have accessory! It safeguards your phone against water damage. Here are its features:

  1. Water-resistant: Keeps your phone from accidental spills and wet weather.
  2. Shockproof: Protects your phone from drops and impacts.
  3. Touchscreen-friendly: Easy access to your phone’s screen.
  4. Transparent Design: Use your phone’s camera without any hurdles.
  5. Secure Seal: Ensures a snug fit to stop water or dust from entering the case.

Pro Tip: Before you submerge your phone, check the case is sealed for optimal protection. Keep your items dry. Have fun knowing your smartphone is safe from becoming a soggy paperweight with this waterproof bag.

Waterproof Bag

My friend Mark learned a lesson the hard way when he went for a hike in the mountains and forgot to bring a waterproof bag for his camera. It was raining heavily and his camera got soaked, which caused him to lose all the pictures he had taken. This showed us how important it is to buy a waterproof bag for our precious belongings.

These bags are made of special materials that repel water, so your items remain dry even in heavy downpours. Plus, they come in various sizes and designs, so you can choose one according to your needs. The high-quality construction of these bags make them durable and secure closure systems like roll-top or zip-lock help to keep the water out.

In addition, some waterproof bags are even designed to float if dropped in the water. Cleaning them is also easy as you can just wipe them with a damp cloth or rinse them under running water. Plus, some of the more advanced versions feature adjustable straps and external pockets.

So, keep in mind that accessories may seem optional, but they are the key to taking your outfit from average to extraordinary!


It’s essential to remember that lightweight and comfortable clothing is key for a successful kayaking experience. For the best comfort, wear quick-drying fabrics like nylon or polyester. These fabrics wick away moisture and keep you cool and dry. Additionally, pick loose-fitting clothes that allow for easy movement. Avoid restrictive garments that could get in the way of paddling.

Protect yourself from the sun’s rays too. Wear a wide-brimmed hat to provide shade. Apply sunscreen with a high SPF to avoid sunburns, especially on exposed areas like your arms and legs.

If you plan to get into the water, wear swimwear underneath. This way, transitioning between paddling and swimming is hassle-free.

Most importantly, always prioritize safety when kayaking. Wear a properly fitted personal flotation device (PFD). It will give you buoyancy and ensure your safety the whole trip.

Fun fact: the American Canoe Association (ACA) says 13 million people in the U.S. participate in kayaking each year!

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  3. Is Kayaking Dangerous for Non-Swimmers – Expert Guide
  4. How To Tie Down 2 Kayaks Without A Roof Rack
  5. Are Clear Kayaks Worth it – What You Need To Know
  6. Can 1 Person Use 2 Person Kayak – Everything You Need to Know

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