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Best suit for extra small female?

7797 Views 25 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Michael Bush
Hi, I am looking for a safe, practical and comfy suit/gloves and would love some suggestions.
1. I am very small, 5'2" and 95 pounds. I understand the need for something roomy, but I would prefer not to feel like I am wearing a tent, either! Also, I have super teeny hands, so I need some gloves that will give my little hands some dexterity and not always be getting pinched in the equipment.
2. I live in Las Vegas and it gets HOT. I need something I'm not going to pass out in.
Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. I am also open to buying something second hand. Thanks! :)
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I dont wear a full suit, I use a half suit and my own trousers choose a baggy pair in a light colour. I tuck the bottom of my trousers into my socks and have a pair of cotton gaitors over that. I get mine from Sheriff beekeeping in the UK but Im sure their are plenty of others closer to home.
Heres some pictures of different styles on ebay

If you need to wear gloves try some gardening gloves that fit properly and are comfortable.

All the beekeeping gloves I've tried are just awful, they don't fit properly are extremely hot and uncomfortable and make you very clumsy.
Welcome to Beesource!

Ultrabreeze offers a ventilated clothing line that include an extra-small suit:

Betterbee offers a more affordable line of bee wear, including smaller sizes:

I wear nitrile gloves. Yes, my hands sweat, but they allow my hands to have good tactile sense.
Thank you guys for the advice!
Frazzledfozzle, gardening gloves are a good idea, thx!
Graham, thanks for the welcome! I have considered the Ultrabreeze. My concern is that the brass zippers will be too hot in the summer, and may burn when I grab them with my fingers / burn my legs, etc. Any opinions on this? 250 is a lot to drop on a suit that will burn me! As for the gloves, a friend of mine suggested those as well, saying he doesn't get stung though them. You obviously agree, then? :)
My son weights a bit less than you and has a Mann Lake economy jacket/veil I think it's a small. He tucks the jacket into his pant and "blouse's it" (if that's a phrase??).
The economy jacket may be a bit hot to spend lots of time in.
The goat skin gloves with nylon sleeves are a good comprise and also come in kids sizes.
I have an ultrabreeze. Its worth every red cent IMO. I haven't noticed the zipper getting too hot.
I have an ultrabreeze. Its worth every red cent IMO. I haven't noticed the zipper getting too hot.
I second that. There are knock off ultrabreeze style suits out there, and the ones I have seen in person are ok, but the extra cost is for a good reason.
> As for the gloves, a friend of mine suggested those [nitrile] as well, saying he doesn't get stung though them.

I don't get stung though my nitrile gloves. But I try to go slow enough to not rile up the bees also. Also, some here have mentioned various style of dishwashing gloves, which are somewhat thicker than nitrile and also have longer sleeves.
I second that. There are knock off ultrabreeze style suits out there, and the ones I have seen in person are ok, but the extra cost is for a good reason.
I third that Ultrabreeze Suit in the Sun here in South Louisiana so for a breeze (no pun intended)
My wife is 5'1" and 104 lbs soaking wet (she's in a 0). She can use the 6-10 kids jacket/ pants set from Mann Lake that my daughter wears. If you are a little taller than my wife, I'd get the 10-14 set. It fits her to save a little $ and does work, but just barely. It is a pull over jacket and pants with elastic waist and ankle cuffs. If you don't get the kids, or want the zip up jacket, I'd get the economy jacket from Mann Lake in a small.

For gloves my wife uses the XS kids. But she has very small hands and because hand size can be very different from one person to the next, it would be hard for me to help you there.
I started with a full suit, zipper veil and gloves. After getting comfortable and like Raider said, working slow an methodical. I rarely use more that a veil now. However, it is likely better to have a suit and not need it than visa versa. I would recommend a removable/string veil over a zippered one.
I to love my ultrabreeze. One thing that makes you a lot cooler is to wear nothing under it. Even a tee shirt will make you hot. It took me 3 years to figure this out.
Keep in mind that a suit should be big so it doesn't bind when you move. I've seen the Ultra-Breeze extra small on a 5'2" woman and you might think it's big at first but it would be just right.
Thank you guys for all of you advice.. After doing some more research and asking around, I am more confused than ever! Wondering if I should just buy a jacket, as I will not be dealing with hot bees for the most part and am more of a backyard beekeeper.. Also, I am not very comfortable in the fencing style hoods that seem to come with all the jackets out there. I am wondering how you all feel about round veils.. Others have recommended a "pocket veil" over a wide brimmed hat.. So confused and eager to make a decision quickly. Thank you again for all the warm responses and advice! :)
I have three different set up. One like the last post. Great for fast peak or nuc work. Then a ultrabreeze main heavy working jacket. My first one was a combo from better bee. It was a pull over jacket with short sleeves. Now reserved for guests.. You do not need a full suit. Do yourself a favor and buy a vented jacket. Of who ever brand. The fencing style isn't as bad as you think.
How exactly does that work? Thanks for the link to the thread. Quite funny content. Much enjoyed..
"The Order Of The Tulle!" ^_^
Again, thank you guys for the input.. :)
Has anyone had any experience with this brand?
Boss has one (full suit) he swears by when the girls are cranky. Otherwise hes a tshirt n no gloves most of the time. Most of our crew use the tulle veils. Much much easier to wear and see.
The veil has an elastic band to tighten around the helmet. Great to just pull downward and put around neck to grab a drink (non bee area) or wipe glasses. Just stretch back over helmet edge n elastic snaps it right back. Very convenient between bee yards not having to de-gear and regear each time.

The strings at the bottom back side are for tying down. Trick is to take each half UNDER your arms and through the d-rings on front bottom of veil. Once they are, pull downward to make the bottom elastic stretch a bit. This pulls the bottom tight to your body no matter the movements-critical!! Once drawn a bit, then I wrap behind and around again to my frontside and double knot that joker. Easy breezy after 2 or 3 practices.

The jackets from Rossmans impressed me with quality feel. Boss carries Mann Lakes version, and Rossmans seem just a tad heavier duty in the velcro n zipper areas.
Both better quality than some of the cheapies have seen at my club.
Rossmans is the one I will be purchasing soon, especially if I can get them to order mine with the bulge collar, which I have in my hobbiest jacket from them.
My biggest problem with zippered hoods is replacements. If anything happens to original hood, can it be easily replaced from other sources? My friends and club members have problems as often as success with them. Another reason I too joined " order of the tulle"
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