Skip to content

Neoprene or Lycra top ? Which one should I choose?

With the arrival of our brand new anti UV lycra tops, the time has come to answer one of your frequently asked question : 

what kind of top should I choose between neoprene and lycra ?

We will now tell you, all you have to know concerning those technologies ! 

noé - long sleeve wetsuit top 2 mm

A top ? Why ?

Watersports practices (Surf / Paddle / Kite / Wake, wind …) expose your body to UV rays, water temperature or also friction with your board. Thus, for concerns about comfort, wellbeing or also health, protection is vively recommended. The choice between a lycra top or a neoprene top will depend from the context of your sportive or touristic practice. 

Lycra Top 

Lycra long sleeve men uv protection waves

Lycra manche longue surf femme protection uv

With short or long sleeves, our lycra tops are made out of polyester and spandex and effectively protects from the sun and UV rays but also from frictions. The loop on the lower part enables you to fix your top to your boardshort to avoid losing it while falling.

Packshort Photo portée Boardshort Saint Jacques Coquille

Easier to suit on and to take off than a neoprene top, the lycra top is also lighter and bring more movement freedom, that can be a real advantage for some riders.

Due to its thinness and its material, it is not designed to keep you warm and to protect you from wind. Thus, you could feel a cold sensation when leaving water due to wind flows.

Our Lycra top is advised for watersports practice in medium to warm water or for leisure at the pool or at the beach.

Slim fit or Loose fit Lycra top ?

Both have their own advantages and responds to two different esthetical approaches.
The Slim fit is tighter and should not please everyone, still, it is highly recommended for some watersports such as surfing because it helps to swim more efficiently by keeping the top close to the body.

Lycra long sleeve men uv protection stripes

lycra protection uv women long sleeve blue saint jacques wetsuits

The loose fit is wider and is more polyvalent and could be used in every type of sportive practice, even out of the water (jogging for example).

water t-shirt - uv protection

Neoprene Top

noe top neoprene men long sleeve saint jacques wetsuits

The thickness and the materials of the neoprene tops keep you warm in mid season and in summer when the temperatures are fresher (morning or tardive ride sessions).
As the lycra top, the neoprene top protects yourself from sun rays and from friction and corresponds to every watersport practice (Surf / Paddle / Kite / Wake, wind …)

The thickness of the neoprene top also protects you more from frictions due to long ride sessions like if it was a second skin. Its windbreaker feature will keep you warm inside and outside the water.

Our models features a loop on the lower part that enables you to fix your top to your boardshort to avoid losing it while falling.


For more details concerning the choice of your neoprene top, we conceived an article that you will find on the button. From thickness to neoprene quality everything is detailed !

Price difference between lycra top and neoprene top

Besides the thermal advantages conferred by the high neoprene, the main distinction between the two technologies concerns its price.

The lycra top is generally less expensive than the Neoprene top because it protects from UV and from friction but it does not keep you warm as the neoprene top do.

At Saint Jacques, the lycra top is available from €35 in its short-sleeved loose version and €39 in its long-sleeved version.

The Neoprene Top is available from €79 in its marco version up to €139 for the Noé Top. 

The Saint Jacques Lycra and Neoprene top’s originality 

noe top neoprene men long sleeve saint jacques wetsuits


Where most neoprene tops and lycras are often standardized and monotonous, at Saint Jacques, we focus on elegance and originality: blue, white, red, striped tops, polo shirts, marcels, short sleeve or long sleeve ! 

Did you like this article ? Discover our entire collection now !

Don't hesitate to comment or ask us your questions ! 

Older Post Newer Post


There are no comments yet. Be the first one to post one!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published.