In addition to your major surf items like surfboard, wetsuit and fins, there’s a number of great ideas and surf accessories that will help improve your surf performance and make your surfing safer and more fun.
It’s surprising what’s there to help you on your surfing adventure. Whether you’re surfing out-and-about or close to home you’ll find something.
Let’s check out some of the most popular surf accessories.
There are two main types of surf headwear. You’ve got hats like those on the left. Creatures of Leisure with their Surf Bucket Hat and FCS’ Essential Surf Bucket Hat. Then there’s caps. Ocean & Earth with their Kuta Mesh Surf Cap and FCS’s Essential Surf Cap. There’s benefits and limitations to the styles of both these surf accessories. So come in store and try them on to find out which fits you best and gives best coverage
Are surf hats and caps useful? Don’t they just get in your way every time you have to duck dive? At your local break they’re likely worn by older guys who seem to be afraid of the sun and don’t surf that well anyway. However if you travel to a surf environment where there’s plenty of sun you’ll find these surf hats and caps give you UV safety and increase your fun.
Surf headwear is designed to give you protection from the sun. It’s constructed with SPF rated fabrics so you can stay out surfing as long as you like without having to worry about getting burnt. Mini leashes are also included. So you can attach them to your wetsuit or rash top. You’ll not lose them even if they get washed off.
There are two main styles of surf headwear.
The hat offers you a number of great benefits. You get a complete brim. This gives you shade all the way around your head. So your forehead and nose, your shoulders and back of your neck all get coverage.
Another big advantage is that the hat has a crown and this sits off the top of your head. So even with the sun beating down the rays are stopped at the top of the hat. This gives you a cooler air space between the hat top and your head.
The negatives include the fact that the hat is bigger, there’s more of it. So when you take a wipeout you have this wet thing sagging down on your head dripping water into your eyes. Also as there’s more of it, it can get caught by a powerful wave. Especially if the crown gets full of wave water it can give your head a pull. The thin string that keeps it on your head can end up rubbing and pulling on your neck.
These are like trucker caps with a few additions. You get a long visor sticking out the front. So your nose and front of your face and chest get good shade protection from the sun. There’s a strap to keep it on your head and this is normally a wider piece of soft neoprene so it’s comfy. The strap runs from the sides under your chin and is secured with a clip.
The strap neoprene widens at your ears providing sun protection. The ear area normally has some form of mesh to allow you to hear and to allow excess water to drain quickly so your ears don’t get clogged.
The drawback with these caps is that you don’t get sun protection on your shoulders and the back of your neck. Also when a wave comes the visor picks up the wave movement. So it will either be pushed down and block your vision, or be pushed back so you’ll have to adjust it back into place.
Surf Hats and Surf Caps are great surf accessories and the negatives are far out weighed by you not getting burnt and being able to surf as long as you want. It comes down to your personal preference which will suit you better. The surf hat gives the more generous coverage. The surf cap is more streamlined. Coming in store you’ll be able to try both on and work out which is best for you.
Nose protectors work to protect you primarily, and your board second. If the nose of your board does strike you you’ll be thankful for the protection these offer. On the left Creatures of Leisure gives you a single item in their kit that uses 3M adhesive. Next Lazer is one of the originators of nose protectors so is proven and you get two units with super glue. Nose Cone is a specialist surf brand’s take on nose protection. On the right Ocean & Earth always give you a great product at great value
In terms of pure safety few items give you as much personal protection as the nose protectors for your board. While they do protect your board nose from bumps and dings their main use is to protect you. The soft plastic nose protector protects your body from the high level harm the sharp nose of your surfboard can cause.
Surfers have been hit in the eye with their sharp board nose causing serious injury. In fact anywhere the nose of your board hits will suffer harm from punctures to fractures the severity depending on wave power.
Nose protectors are proven to reduce the risk you face and to give you safety. So it’s worth coming in store and trying out one of these surf accessories that will safeguard your body.
What a great selection of waterproof bags. These bags give you a huge amount of versatility. From the smaller bags for your keys, credit cards to the bigger tablet bags that are see through so you can control your device, they keep everything inside completely dry. Ocean & Earth has a small bag with all the convenience of a bum-bag that’s also waterproof. Below that is an O&E Lite series bag that folds up tiny and weighs next to nothing. However it unfolds to 25L and is waterproof. Heavier duty waterproof bags include the Ocean & Earth PVC bag and Lite bag with backpack straps. Creatures of Leisure has great waterproof bags including the full PVC sealed series and the Travel Pack that doesn’t look like a wetsuit bag it’s fully waterproof
These are such a great idea. A bag that will keep your gear and valuables dry even if washed over with the rain or a wave. Of course they also work in reverse. Your wet gear and all its wetness can be kept inside your bag and away from your dry gear too.
Waterproof bags come in two main formats, smaller bags and bigger bags.
There’s smaller bags around the size of your iPad or phone. Some of these bags are see-through and offer the ability to control your device through the bag. So you can check things like the time and run your apps if necessary. Smaller versions are just big enough for your electronic car keys and credit cards.
Ocean & Earth have a smaller size bum bag that while not see-through gives you the convenience of the waist-belt setup along with a shoulder strap option. It’s fully waterproof too.
There’s larger carry bags and backpacks that are sized to fit your wetsuit and more. They’re made from fully waterproof material. Most of these are a plastic. To make them waterproof any stitching is sealed. In some cases they don’t have stitching and use glue and tape for a complete seal.
Interestingly these bags are closed with a simple fold over system. The top of the bag can be folded over on itself several times and these folds are secured with a strap and buckle. No water can enter or exit these folds.
There’s lots of detail to these bags including a range of carry options. There’s carry handles for your hand, shoulder straps with padding, through to backpack straps. So they’re very versatile and great for keeping your valuables dry even in the most adverse weather or accidental conditions. Or they can keep your wet gear inside and prevent it from leaking water over your dry gear.
These bigger bags have two styles. Bags that are bigger and substantial made out of a plastic PVC material or bags that are lightweight constructed from nylon. Each offer benefits. The PVC style bags are rugged and durable. If you know you’ve got gear that needs to be transported then you have a known solution to fit.
The nylon style bags have negligible weight and take up almost no space when rolled up and not in use. So you can easily stash them in your baggage or board bag. When needed they’ll expand to give the space you need and the waterproof benefits.
A range of ear plugs for your surfing. On the far left the Mack’s Pillow Soft Silicone Earplugs are balls of soft silicone. You warm then in your hands and roll them into shape to fit in your ear canal. They then prevent water entry. The next products are Docs Pro Plugs that are different from other ear plugs. They sit on the outside of your ear canal and seal your ear from there. The green Surf Ears are already up to version 3.0 being constantly improved and sit in and seal your earl canal. Aware that kids have smaller ear canals Surf Ears also has a Junior size shown on the far right
If you’re a committed surfer you need to take care of your ears. This means not only drying them out after every surf but also preventing water, especially cold water, getting in them in the first place.
Surfers Ear is a condition where cold water activates bone growth inside your ear canal. The bones grow under your skin. Eventually your ear canal narrows so you have trouble hearing. With a narrow opening your ears also have trouble draining and this can lead to additional problems.
There’s a range of ear plug type solutions.. These range from special wax-like putty to high tech plugs. Each offers benefits.
Putty is an inexpensive reusable option that you roll in small balls and insert into your ear canal. It prevents water entry and the putty is especially formulated to conduct sound letting it pass through. The draw back is that if you drop the putty foreign objects like dirt, grit and sand stick to it. Once on there it’s almost impossible to get off. So you have to take special care to keep your putty clean.
Plugs come in less expensive and expensive high tech formats.
One plug that offers differentiation is the Docs Pro Plug. These are different in that they sit on the outer side of your ear and don’t need to be inserted into your ear canal. In this way they don’t disturb your ear wax or fine inner ear hairs and are entirely less invasive.
At the other end of the spectrum are Surf Ears that are already in their multi version evolution. These are plugs that go into your ear. They provide a seal while also conducting sound. Their seal consists of rings of soft plastic that block your ear canal preventing water entry. Surf Ears also come in a Junior kids size.
Which is best for you? Come in store and have a good look and feel.
Hand Planes are surf accessories that offer an alternative to your surfboard. It comes in forms as minimalist to as high tech as you want. It gives you the ability to plane on the wave face, to get long rides and do moves. On the left the Hydro Hand Surfer is a minimal popout from plastic yet it includes a channel and curved template for responsive moves. The Ecto Fly FishWood Hand Plane 11″ gives you a good length with surfboard features of flyer and swallow tail that will assist your weighting forward and back. It includes a carry bag and leash. The Slyde Bula is more substantive board made from TPU that dampens vibration designed to handle more powerful waves. The Stealth Plugga Handboard is foam filled just like a surfboard and uses bodyboard tech for its deck and slick base. It’s super light giving you a high speed flow
Ever considered ditching your surfboard and it being just you and the wave? The main problem is that you tend to be limited to waves close to shore as you can’t surf too far on your body alone – unless you have one of those surf accessories like a hand plane.
The hand plane is a planning surface that is like a mini surfboard. It provides a surface on which the wave energy pushes up and you can push down with your body. As you apply and easy off pressure and move your body weight from side to side you can steer yourself on the wave and surf it.
It’s a great experience and there’s two basic designs. Both designs come with a velcro adjustable hand strap so and a leash that attaches to your wrist. There’s the minimalist and the full featured models.
The minimalist hand plane is thin. Whether it’s constructed of wood or plastic it is thin with no padding. So in the water it is responsive transmitting your body movements most effectively into moves on the wave. Features can be incorporated into the basic design so you can get channels for speed and template curves for moves.
The high tech hand planes use several materials such as plastics and foams. Almost like mini surfboards they have a plastic outer over a soft foam inner. Some though have a plastic outer and are hollow. As they’re thicker they are less responsive. However they provide more float helping you go farther on the wave, rather than sinking as the wave power backs off.
Advanced bodyboard tech is incorporated in the form of the foam cores, deck and slick surfaces.
Plenty of options for your security are available instore. FK Surf offer the old school Car Lock that locks your steering wheel. If you’ve an older car this could be just what you need. Seacured and FK have their Key Safes, along with higher end offerings from Ocean & Earth and Creatures of Leisure. Come and check their internal space offerings to fit your car key, credit cards and house keys. Which feels most robust, corrosion resistant and easiest to open when your hands are slippery or freezing?
In terms of pure security there’s key safes. These are metal boxes around twice the size of your credit card with versatile attach points that are locked with a combination. The idea is that you can attach the key safe to your car door handle or tow point and place your electronic car key or credit cards in them. When you go for a surf they keep your valuables safe. On returning from your surf you use your combination to open the box and retrieve your keys.
These are a great alternative over placing your car key on your car wheel, or placing your key in the sand. With electronic car keys you can’t keep them on your body in the surf as they’ll be ruined by the water. Keeping them in a key safe is perfect.
The key safe combinations can be any one of 10,000 options and quality construction means the key safe will not degrade from salt water and ocean proximity. There’s a range of different brands with different gauges of metal and attach points so come in store and see which will work best for you.
These are just some of the main types of surf accessories we have available. Come in store and see our full range. Browse, get hands on and find a solution or new idea that will improve your surfing, your surf safety and fun.