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The Ultimate Sailing Clothes Guide: What to Wear When Sailing

Updated: Jul 17, 2022

sailing clothes guide

Are you new to sailing and going on your first sailing trip? Maybe it's a sailing day trip that you are taking while on vacation or possibly you are chartering a sailboat in the Caribbean. Sounds nice right?

Well no matter the sailing situation, you will likely need a sailing clothes guide to point you in the right direction. I wish I had this guide when I was taking a sailing day cruise around Monterey Bay in California. It was a beautiful day, a great experience, but let's just say, I was underdressed and overly cold!

Are You Sailing Around the World?

First, you need to know where you are sailing. Are you sailing around the world and need to pack for various climate changes? Are you going to a sailing school and need to pack for a seven-day liveaboard vacation?

Also, ask yourself how long will you be sailing? If you are going on a sailing day cruise for a few hours, then obviously you will not need to bring a piece of luggage, or at least we hope not. But then again, if you are bringing children along you will need to bring extra clothes (we know how that goes).

Now think about the duration of your sailing trip. Will it be for 1, 7, or 30 days?

Next, you need to consider the weather. What type of weather will you most likely encounter? Will it be hot and humid, cold and foggy, or rainy?

All of these scenarios will impact what type of sailing clothes you will need to wear and bring on your sailing trip.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning we receive a small commission if you make a purchase through our links, at no cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This helps us to continue writing reviews, top lists, and providing educational articles for our readers.

What to Look for When Buying Sailing Clothes

When looking at specific men's and women's sailing clothes, you want to buy clothes that are durable, have UPF protection, and are possibly water-resistant if you will be sailing in the rain or on a sailing vacation.

Men's Sailing Clothes for Warm/ Hot Weather Day Trip

Men's Sailing Clothes for Cooler Weather Day Trip

  • Long Sleeve Shirt/ Button-Up Shirt

  • Lightweight Rainjacket or Windproof Jacket (check the weather)

  • Pants

  • Hat

  • Polarized Glasses

  • Deck Shoes/ Sailing Boots/ Sneakers

Women's Sailing Clothes for Warm/Hot Weather Day Trip

Women's Sailing Clothes for Cooler Weather Day Trip

  • Long Sleeve Shirt or Shirt Sleeve Top and Layer with a Sweater

  • Long Pants

  • Jacket

  • Scarf

  • Sun Hat

  • Polarized Glasses

  • Deck Shoes/ Sailing Boots (depends on weather/water conditions)

Kid's Sailing Clothes for Hot and Cold Weather

Sailing Clothes Tips

Always expect the unexpected when sailing and consider dressing in layers. It may be a beautiful sunny day, but when you are out on the water, it can be windy and chilly. For little ones, always bring a jacket so they can bundle up if necessary.

We also found an informative article that explains the difference between SPF and UPF when considering sun-protectant clothing.

What to Consider When Buying Sailing Shoes

Before you set sail, consider the climate where you will be sailing. Will you be expecting rough seas where water will be splashing on the deck? Smooth seas? No matter what type of sea, you will need non-slip deck shoes. There are many non-slip deck shoes on the market to consider.

Hot Weather Sailing Trip

More than likely you will be barefoot while sailing or at least have flip-flops nearby.

Warmer to Cooler Weather Sailing Trip

Consider deck shoes that you can easily slip on and off. This allows for an easy transition on and off the sailboat. Here is an example of men's deck shoes. We also reviewed a pair of women's deck shoes.

Harsh/Cold Weather Sailing Trip

For harsh, cold weather conditions, look into deck boots.

If you are looking to save a little cash, then look around your closet. Do you have any sneakers with light-colored soles that wouldn't scratch and mark up the boat deck?

Are There Sailing Stores Near Me?

Yes, more than likely there will be sailing stores near you or some variation of a sailing store. Search the web for marine stores and boat stores if "sailing stores near me" doesn't show any results.

We have purchased men's and women's sailing clothes from sporting goods stores (e.g., REI, Dick's Sporting Goods, Sports Authority, etc.), big-box stores (e.g., Walmart, Target, etc.), and ordered sailing clothes online (e.g., Amazon).

Where to Find Used Sailing Clothes?

When looking for used sailing clothes, check out your local consignment stores and donation centers like Goodwill.

There are some great second-hand clothes websites that you can check out like Poshmark, Thredup, and eBay.

Remember to look ahead of time when buying used sailing clothes because you need to allow time for shipping.

Are You Ready to Go Sailing?

We hope you are ready to set sail! We hope you found our ultimate sailing clothes guide helpful! If you would like to read a more in-depth article pertaining to cold and hot weather sailing clothes, leave a comment below and let us know. Thanks for reading!

Did you find this post helpful? Save THIS post to your Sailing board on Pinterest :)

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Hello! I'm Tiffany, a creative travel writer, mother to three awesome kids, and Floridian. We like to visit beautiful Florida beaches, Florida State Parks, and of course Disney! I like to write about our travel adventures and provide tips to other families traveling or relocating to the Sunshine State.


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