Top 5 Changing Robes in 2022

Anyone who has tried coming up from the water as the sun is going down knows the biting chill of the air on their wet skin. Having a changing robe to put around your shivering body is one of the best feelings to match your best swim, paddle or scuba dive.

Big enough to go over your life vest or wetsuit, and long enough to change without getting cold or compromising your modesty, these parkas dry you off at the same time.

It’s your very own changing room that you can take anywhere you go and use anytime you need.

Changing robes are typically lined by towel, fleece, or microfiber. It preserves your heat within its space and wicks away moisture from your body. The hood also has the same construction to dry your head.

Pockets are also a must so you can stay hands-free while using the changing robe. Some are even stylish enough to pass as an overcoat walking through town on an autumn day.

Now, there’s an ocean of options. Here are a few things to keep in mind when looking for the best changing robe:

To save you some time and stress, we tested some of the famous changing robes you’ll find in the market and landed on the top 5. Here’s what we found out.

The Top 6 Changing Robes in 2022

All the Changing Robes We've tested

Weatherproof, Multi-Sport

A changing parka makes the whole watersports experience better – no matter if you’re coming up from a dive, paddle boarding, out for a morning swim, or getting out of the water as the sun goes down, this is the time when you’re susceptible to the chill air.

Staying dry and warm is the first and best way to improve safety and enjoyment. The Aqua Parka by Gill Marine is a very good candidate to fill this need.

Imagine pulling it over your pulled-down wetsuit and having ample space to change. That’s what the Aqua Parka was designed to deliver.

It’s a portable and personal changing poncho with a hood, a furry (toweling) lining, and built with the durability we expect from the Gill Marine name.

Read on and see how this parka met our high hopes after scuba dives, paddle boarding, and as a swim parka.

Specs & Features

  • Shell: 100% Polyurethane
  • Lining: Polyester Fleece
  • Weight: 1.32 lbs.
  • Colors: Black
  • Sizes: S - XL

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.8

Things we like:

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    Completely wind- and waterproof
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    Stylish design
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    The 4-way stretch fabric helps with mobility while changing
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    Velcro cuffs create space for hands to pack
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    Outer pockets can double as hand warmers

Things we don't like:

  • check-markLack of alternative colors
  • check-markLack of loop at inside collar for hanging up
  • check-markNo adjustable drawstring in the hood
Read full review

Where to buy:

Gill Aqua Parka Product Picture

Review of Aqua Parka by Gill Marine

Want a breathable, waterproof, and durable changing robe? Then you need to see Red Original Men’s Short Sleeve Pro Change Robe EVO.

Designed to give you ample space to change, you can move with ease and peace of mind inside this Red changing robe. You can quickly sneak your arms in through its short sleeves and get in a dry set of clothing in just a minute. The side panels offer you room allowance in case you need more.

With a thick fleece lining, your body heat won’t go anywhere. While it keeps away moisture, your body also instantly receives heat and stays cozy throughout use. The hood’s toggle adjustment is an excellent tick in design that other changing robes don’t have. With this Red changing robe, even your head won’t catch the cold weather with the hood’s snuggly fit.

Red Original Men’s Short Sleeve Pro Change Robe EVO got you covered in every direction. Even the YKK zippers in the front have five popper wind baffles and a flap to ensure protection from cold, wind, and water. The DWR coating also amplifies this changing robe’s waterproofness. As soon as water hits, it simply beads and glides off.

This Red changing robe has plenty of pockets for your items: a chest pocket outside, plus one zipped mesh pocket and an open pocket inside. The outer hand pockets also have magnet locks, so no need to undo any zips to warm your hands after plunging in the icy waters.

Without a doubt, one of the best changing robes in the market today, Red Original Men’s Short Sleeve Pro Change Robe EVO, is a must-have for all-day fun-day, whether it’s the warm or cold season.

Specs & Features

  • Material: : Fabric, YKK Zippers, PFC-Free DWR
  • Lining: : Fleece Material
  • Sleeve Length: : Short
  • Colors: : Gray, Navy, Teal, Hawaiian Blue, and Fuchsia
  • Sizes: : Medium and Large

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.7

Things we like:

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    Toggle adjustment on hood offers custom fit
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    Magnet-locked hand pockets give easy access
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    Inner mesh pocket makes it easy to see your items
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    Extra internal low pocket for your undergarment
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    The side panels provide extra room when you're changing

Things we don't like:

  • check-markCold can get in through the short sleeves
Read full review

Where to buy:

Red Original Men’s Short Sleeve Pro Product Image

Red Original Long Sleeve Pro

If you need an instant escape from the cold after swimming in an icy lake, you need to check out the dryrobe Advanced Long Sleeve Change Robe. Offering complete protection from cold and water, its nylon shell with BIONIC-FINISH ECO prevents weather penetration. (Mind you, BIONIC-FINISH ECO alone already has a 10,000 mm waterproof rating and 5000g/m2 breathability). Meaning, this changing robe effectively traps your heat to keep you cozy.

Pair that with synthetic polyester-made lamb’s wool lining, and you’re sure that heat-retention is easy-peasy when you use this changing robe. It’s all made better with the wrists adjustable Velcro cuffs for a custom fit.

The YKK zips of this dryrobe model slide smoothly and are also waterproof! Stay warm and dry after a triathlon without chilly wind oozing from the zips. Your hands can slip in the outer pockets and stay toasty since they’re fleece-lined as well.

Your beloved phone can stay safe in the left inner zipped pocket. It’s got an earphone hole, so you still listen to your favorite music while resting after doing laps.

With a 29-inch (width) changing space, you can move without restrictions and slip from your wetsuit to fresh dry clothes in no time inside this changing robe.

dryrobe Advanced Long Sleeve Change Robe is one of the best out there. Be unstoppable and make the most out of life even when the weather decides to leave you in freezing environs.

Specs & Features

  • Material: : 100% Recycled Nylon Shell, YKK Zippers, BIONIC-FINISH ECO
  • Lining: : Lamb’s Wool from 100% Recycled Polyester
  • Sleeve Length: : Long
  • Weight: : 1.4 Kg
  • Colors: : Back/Pink, Black/Blue, Black/Red, and Black/Blue

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.6

Things we like:

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    BIONIC-FINISH ECO is free from harmful chemicals
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    Water- and windproof
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    The inner pocket is roomy for your phone, with an earphone hole so you can listen to music on the go.
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    Zips are often a point of failure, but this one has them properly integrated.
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    The adjustable Velcro wrist cuffs prevent cold from getting in

Things we don't like:

  • check-markSizing is confusing
  • check-markThe hood could use a drawstring with a cord lock toggle better fit and additional protection.
  • check-markYou need to purchase the storage bag separately.
Read full review

Where to buy:

Dryrobe Advanced Long Sleeve Product Image

Dryrobe Advanced Long Sleeve Changing Poncho

Originally designed for swimmers, this multi-use waterproof poncho is reasonably priced, and made with a focus on durability and sustainability.

Watery is a young company that naturally tries to have its finger on the pulse of production values demanded by outdoorsy customers. If they they succeed in this endeavor is the question we tested.

The short answer is yes and no, respectively. That said, it is not without its shortcomings. But this Watery poncho is a compact (ie packable) changing robe and jacket that wicks away moisture, providing good warmth for post swimming during the spring or fall.

Read our full review and see if the Watery Waterproof Poncho is the right waterproof poncho for you.

Specs & Features

  • Material: Aqua Fleece material (recycled and virgin polyester exterior, microfiber interior lining)
  • Weight: approximately 300 grams (~0.66 lbs)
  • Includes: waterproof, 76% recycled PVC bag
  • Comes in two sizes and three colors

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.5

Things we like:

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    Made partly with recycled materials, making it more earth-friendly than most of its peers
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    Extremely lightweight and compact, allowing for easy storage
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    Inner microfiber lining soaks up moisture quite well
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    Reasonably durable for the price
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    The combination of microfiber and polyester makes the poncho quite breathable, which adds to comfort

Things we don't like:

  • check-markNot as thick and therefore less warm than other options
  • check-markComes in only two sizes (M and L), which makes it unideal for people with smaller or significantly larger builds.
  • check-markThere's not a lot of variety when it comes to color, either.
Read full review

Where to buy:

Watery Waterproof Poncho Product Image

Watery Waterproof Poncho

Escape into warmth after surfing without breaking the bank with Northcore Beach Basha Long Sleeve Changing Robe.

The combination of nylon shell and its polyurethane coating makes it a reliable changing robe even during downpours. PU coating is also known to add tear- and abrasion-resistance to the fabric, so no worries if this Northcore changing robe gives up after first use.

Not even chilly winds can pass through the outer shell. Plus, the soft Sherpa fleece lining serves you with cozy warmth. The adjustable Velcro cuffs at the wrists ensure that the heat won’t escape.

It’s surprisingly roomy when it comes to changing space, considering this Northcore changing robe only comes in one size. There’s also a side panel so you can move more while getting out of your wetsuit post-surfing. The back section is also longer. Your privacy won’t be compromised even when you bend down.

The 2-way front zip is easy to use. Bonus, it’s salt-resistant. No corrosion will visit your changing robe, especially if you’re a beach bum.

There are also inner pockets where your kits and phone can stay dry. The left shoulder pocket also has a flap to add security. It’s easy to snatch your snorkeling goggles.

With all of those valuable features in mind, it’s surprising how Northcore Beach Basha Long Sleeve Changing Robe is still way cheaper than most well-known brands offering the same perks.

Specs & Features

  • Material: : Nylon Shell, PU Coating
  • Lining: : Sherpa Fleece
  • Sleeve Length: : Long
  • Weight: : 4.41 lbs.
  • Colors: : Black

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.6

Things we like:

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    One of the most affordable yet durable changing robes out there
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    The fleece lining gets you toasty warm and dry quickly
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    There's a Velcro wrist cuff for a personalized fit
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    The back section is longer than the front
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    Side panels give you more room

Things we don't like:

  • check-markKangaroo pockets aren’t deep enough
  • check-markThere’s no hood toggle for fit adjustment
Read full review

Where to buy:

Northcore Beach Basha Long Sleeve Product Image

Northcore Beach Basha Long Sleeve

Having your changing robe for your post open water swimming doesn’t have to dig holes in your pocket. With Frostfire Moonwrap Adult Waterproof Changing Robe, you get all the benefits of expensive brands without paying for a ridiculous tag.

Waterproof and windproof outer nylon shell, fleece-lined- all the basics you need for an easy escape from the cold. It’s spacious for a breezy transition from a wet bathing suit to your new set of casuals.

It also means you can get out of the water, put this Moonwrap changing robe over, and get inside your car, and head home without worrying about your car seat!

The polyester/acrylic blend fleece lining will keep you warm as soon as you’re inside and won’t weigh you down since it wicks away water without absorbing it. Even the hood offers coziness and will dry your hair quickly.

There’s only one zipped pocket inside Frostfire Moonwrap Adult Waterproof Changing Robe. It’s enough room for your smartphone to stay dry and safe. The zippered hand pockets outside are also ready to give your shaking hands some warmth with their soft fleece lining.

Don’t let any winter and chilly winds hinder your outdoor plans. Not even a tight budget can compromise your comfort when you get this Moonwrap changing robe.

Specs & Features

  • Material: : 100% Nylon Shell
  • Lining: : 70% Polyester, 30% Acrylic
  • Sleeve Length: : ¾
  • Colors: : Black
  • Sizes: : One Size Fits All

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.5

Things we like:

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    A great alternative to more famous and expensive brands
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    Well made. Wind- and waterproof, can keep up with harsh weather
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    Inner zipped pocket will keep your smartphone secure
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    Plenty of room for changing
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    Outer pockets are your instant hand warmers

Things we don't like:

  • check-markZipper can be tricky
  • check-markShorter sleeves let cold wind in
  • check-markAvailable in one size only
  • check-markIt’ll be better if the hood comes with a toggle for adjustment
Read full review

Where to buy:

Frostfire Moonwrap Adult Waterproof Product Image

Frostfire Moonwrap Adult Waterproof

Related Reviews

Changing Robes: Buyer’s Guide

Changing robes are taking the outdoor industry slowly but surely. It’s a helpful gear whether you’re a swimmer, surfer, hiker, you name it. It helps you get dry and stay warm when you take time out from your favorite activity.

And the best part? You can change your clothes anytime, anywhere—no need to look for changing rooms. Just wear your changing robe and get ready from a summer dress to a wetsuit in no time.

But how do you find “the one”? That changing robe you can rely on no matter what the weather is? One that makes your outdoor experiences easier? How would you find the product that returns the most value for its cost?

Changing robes is a serious investment.

And to help you decide, here are a few points to look for when searching for the best changing robe:

Materials

The most common factor to consider when purchasing any product- the materials used. It can range from wool and towel-like material to microfibers with a mix of other waterproof fabrics for changing robes. Taking a closer look at the outer shell and inner lining will benefit you in the long run.

Wool is usually the warmth-keeper in your changing robe since it doesn’t absorb or heat. Microfiber is for hygienic purposes since it is well-known for its antimicrobial properties.

The fabric’s breathability is also vital in the whole drying process. Without proper airflow, you’ll stay wet and cold while using your changing robe, and that defeats its entire purpose.

It’s crucial to weigh these products’ breathability, durability, and weatherproof-ness for the best user experience. And this in-depth review of the best changing robes will help you with this grueling task.

Dimensions

Now, the dimensions- your comfort dictator. We’re talking about your size, the sleeve length, cut, and stretch panels.

It’s usually the case that each product has its sizing guide since it can vary from product to product, depending on the materials used and its layering. Pay attention to the detailed guideline to avoid wasting your money on a changing robe that’ll only sit at the corner collecting dust.

It’s a matter of personal preference whether you want it with short or long sleeves-yes. Long sleeve changing robes serve you with the most warmth, but it gets a little tricky maneuvering your arms. While on the other side, short sleeves offer you mobility.

Inside the robe, how much room do you get? Does it have stretch panels giving you extra space when moving while you change from your wetsuit to casuals? You don’t want your legs poking out of the fabric to the point of breaking it, right?

How about the cut? You might come across affordable changing robes with V-cut. Meaning the side edges are way shorter than the front and back, exposing you, especially in unforgiving winds.

All of these factors contribute to your overall ease of use. Avoid overlooking each to get the best value for your hard-earned money.

Features

What makes a changing robe stand out of the bunch? Valuable features. It may be extra thought in the zips, making them waterproof like the rest of the product. It can also be on the pockets, inner and outer.

One detriment that most waterproof products suffer from is in the zips. They are usually made with little to no protection, beating the entire “waterproof” game down. Note whether the zips are taped or coated- these prevent water and wind penetration. Waterproof zippers are now also a thing that most manufacturers use in their changing robes.

Pockets- they keep your hands-free and your valuables safe within reach. How many of them would you like your changing robe to have and where? Inside, close to your body, or accessible from the outside? What items would you like to keep in them?

Waterproof outer pockets ensure that your phone and other tech gadgets can easily slip into a safe place in case a heavy downpour visits you out of nowhere.

And, of course, the hood. Is it adjustable through a drawstring or not? Maybe it’s removable as well?

Can you choose from a wide range of colors? Do you want it to be bright or low-profile? Any particular design in mind that represents your personality?

Weight

Tired, hungry, and cold, and, undoubtedly, a heavy changing robe will be depressing. After a fun swimming session, the last thing you would want is to put further effort into drying yourself.

In this complete lowdown of the best changing robes, lightweight-ness is another factor we consider while testing these products.

Dragging a heavy changing robe is a big no-no unless you’re willing to sacrifice a little bit in exchange for unique features that might be causing the weight.

Comfort

Can it keep you warm during the cold season? Changing robes with towel-lining typically give most heat retention. The best way to confirm is by digging through the reviews. Although, if you’re in a tropical paradise, warmth might not be a necessary factor for you.

How about the feels? Does the fabric smoothly touch your body? Fleece-lined ones are commonly known for their softness.

Packing Size

How portable do you need your changing robe to be? Can it sit inside your bag with more room left for other valuables? Or do you need a separate bag for it alone? Maybe it needs to stay at the back of your car?

You want a changing robe you can carry anywhere- one that can offer you comfort at your fingertips.

Ease of Care

How do you maintain a changing robe at its optimal condition? Do you need to set aside time for hand-washing? Modern designs can withstand machine-wash. Do you need to put it into a laundry bag first? Or can you safely throw it inside? Perhaps there’s a special care instruction included in the package?

How long would it take to dry? Can you tumble-dry it, or must it be left hanging or flat to air-dry?

A machine-friendly changing robe is a must if you have a flooded daily schedule.

How about DWR (Durable Water Repellent)? Do you need to purchase them to recoat the changing robe from time to time? If so, when should you do it?

Does your changing robe come with a bag? Does it require washing separately as well?

Price

Is the quality worth the tag? How much are you willing to spend?

Expect that the quality increases along with the cost. But! That’s not to say that affordable changing robes are crappy. With enough attention to details and a little time investment in researching and reading reviews, you’re sure to land on the best changing robe that ticks your needs and budget.

That sums up our complete lowdown in the best changing robes in the market today. Which one ticked your interest? Let us know in the comments below!

FAQ

Frequently asked questions

What is the best changing robe?

Skip the hassles of looking everywhere. Here are the best changing robes today:

  • Red Original Men’s Short Sleeve Pro Change Robe EVO
  • Gill Marine Aqua Parka
  • dryrobe Advanced Long Sleeve Change Robe
  • Frostfire Moonwrap Adult Waterproof Changing Robe
  • Northcore Beach Basha Long Sleeve Changing Robe

Dig deeper into each changing robe by clicking the links above.

How to make a changing robe?

You’ll need three beach towels as the main fabric for your DIY changing robe. Two will be the body, while the remaining will be the hood and front pocket.

  1. Cut a portion of one towel and follow a kangaroo pocket cut. You can make it as deep and roomy as you want it to be.
  2. Stitch this pattern to the beach towel that will serve as the front section of your changing robe.
  3. Get the remaining fabric and cut a rectangular pattern for your hood. Create a panel for the drawstring on one side. Then, fold it in the middle and stitch the top portion. Make sure that the sides with panels are at the front.
  4. Grab the two whole beach towels, and then cut them to your desired length. Seam the sides together and leave the armholes open.
  5. Sew the hood on top. Create tiny holes for your drawstring and slip it inside to the other side.

Making your changing robe is better done on a sewing machine. If you don’t have one, it’s best to purchase a ready-made changing robe.

How to use a changing robe?

It’s simple. Just layer it over your wetsuit or bathing suit for warmth. If you want to get changed, pull your arms into the body and change as you usually would. It will be awkward if you’ve never done it before. But you’ll get used to it over time.

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