Rash Guard Saves Skin
(San Diego, CA, USA)
I didn't know what those silly shirts were about. Rash guards don't make sense to you until you wish you had been wearing one.
After a marathon session of body boarding shortly after moving to California, I emerged from the water feeling a sting.
A few minutes later the pain was worsening and I noticed a pink rash on my chest from friction with the course Styrofoam.
Now the silly shirts seemed pretty brilliant. Years later the ocean is a much closer friend and many rash guards have come and gone from my closet.
Most important for me has been using a rash guard under my wetsuit. I've never had a wetsuit that didn't chaff at my skin if worn alone.
When looking to buy a rash guard use the same common sense you would use when buying other clothing.
Looks may be important but don't forget the other factors, such as; fit, quality of make, and price.
I like to go to a surf shop and try a few brands out to see what fits right and looks durable. After this is known, one can hunt for a good deal online.
Getting the fit right is important if you plan on using your rash guard under a wetsuit. One that is too loose, especially in the shoulder area, can cause the very chaffing it's supposed to protect against.
While the tight fit might not be the look you are into, (mine either) this is a case where the form sort of has to follow the function.
Oh, while I'm giving advice here, when you start getting tore up again by your suit, you might not notice at first that your rash guard
has gotten worn out.
It will most likely still look fine, and might even still fit OK, but over time they get thin and worn and stop protecting you as well.
Don't be dense like me and suffer through three months of skin discomfort, get some new gear, it's worth it.