The Best Waders For Women
Move over, men’s waders – there’s a huge revolution afoot in women’s waders. Add fit, features, style, and color to quality materials and construction, and women’s fishing waders are taking the market by storm. Not to mention making it easier to wade into deeper waters for a good fly fishing catch. Check out these best fishing waders for women.
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Many modern-day female anglers grew up with only the same waders as their brothers and dads had to choose from. Today, there are an increasingly wide variety of waders for women that offer not only protection and comfort, but suitability to every female angler’s needs and preferences as well. This article covers the top waders we think are the overall best in the market.
How To Choose The Best Fishing Waders
What makes the best fishing waders the best, what should you look for? There are several factors to consider when choosing the most suitable wader for you. These factors include whether the brand is proven in waders overall, features, fit, style, colors, material, design, construction, durability, and of course price.
For women anglers, style can be a key factor to consider when choosing a wader. Some brands styles are similar to their male counterparts, while others have completely redesigned the look and feel for women.
For many years the focus was on creating the best breathable-while-still-waterproof materials. Waders now come with many accessory features beyond waterproof materials, such as smart pockets (for more easily finding your tools), fleece lined pockets, more versatile adjustable straps, different colors and sizes. Of course, the more and better features you want, in general the higher the price goes. But, for standing hours in the water, durability and comfort should never be compromised.
Summary of Reviews – Best Women’s Waders
The waders we recommend in this article are summarized in the outline and table below, followed by detailed reviews. Note this article has been updated in 2021 to add the most recent developments. PRACTICAL ($130 – $200)
1. Caddis Women’s Teal Deluxe Chest Waders
2. Redington Women’s Willow River Waders
3. Orvis Women’s Clearwater Waders
BEST VALUE ($200 – $400)
4. Simms Tributary Stockingfoot Waders for Women
5. Orvis Women’s Ultralight Convertible Wader
6. Redington Womens Sonic Pro Waders
HIGH END ($400 – $600)
7. Patagonia Women’s Spring River Waders
8. Simms Women’s G3 Guide Waders
9. Simms Women’s Freestone Z Waders
For a description of how we arrive at our ratings for womens waders for fishing, read our article on “Ultimate Guide To The Best Fishing Waders”. For the most part we present gear in the Practical, Best Value, and High End categories, excluding Cheap and Outrageous.
To get the best long-term value out of your investment in quality waders, be sure to also read our sections in the article referenced above on storing and caring for your waders. We cover detailed tips specific to different wader types, such as breathable versus neoprene.
Comparison of Specifications and Features
We want you to know exactly what you are getting for your money, for each value rating, at each price point. So, our team has undertaken a lot of effort to assemble a detailed comparison of the waders specifications and features. Buying online is convenient, but we also want you to have a full view into exactly what you are getting, beyond the marketing pitch that comes on the manufacturer’s website or online retailers. [Note – additional waders have been added to this article since this table was constructed, additions forthcoming.]
Detailed Reviews of Best Women’s Waders
Each of our reviews is accompanied by a product snapshot so you can see all of the information you need in one place.
1. Caddis Women’s Teal Deluxe Chest Waders
Caddis is now a strong player in the market, by combining a chic design with CaddisDry breathable technology, strength, and durability. Their wader design boasts odor prevention, hand warmer pockets, and other features.
- Polyester material that features CaddisDry breathable technology
- Several pockets with hand warmer
- Taped, glued, and stitched tapes
- Double layered knees for proper reinforcement
- Suspenders that can be adjusted
Made from premium polyester, the Caddis Women’s Teal Deluxe Waders are known for their strength and durability. This womens wader can withstand even the most unfriendly fishing environment without getting scratches. Plus, it has a chic design that allows you to stay fashionable even when you’re in the water. Who wouldn’t want to catch their trophy fish in this stunning, teal wader? It has adjustable suspenders that makes it easy to wear.
Caddis Dry Technology makes this wader breathable so you don’t have to worry about getting soaked with sweat during warm days.
- Breathable and comfortable to wear
- Durable yet elegant
- Odor-preventive due to Caddis Dry Technology
- Ideal for various weather conditions
- Plenty of pockets for storage
- Heavy material can cause discomfort when worn for long hours
2. Redington Women’s Willow River Waders
If you are looking for a combination of durability and comfort, at a reasonable cost, the Redington Willow River waders for women are for you. You are virtually guaranteed comfort with its water-resistant zip pocket, reinforced knees, and neoprene boots to keep your tootsies warm even while most of the waders are breathable. For the cost, Redington waders bring a lot to the table.
- Neoprene boots that provide adequate insulation
- Zip pocket with water-resistant quality
- Pockets lined with fleece
- Triple layers of 100% nylon material
The Redington Women’s Willow River Waders guarantee comfort with its water-resistant zip pocket, reinforced knees, and neoprene boots, among other practical features. It is also highly-durable since it is made from three layers of 100% nylon material. Don’t worry about venturing into cooler waters because the high-density neoprene booties will keep you warm. This design is a nice departure from needing to buy 100% neoprene waders to keep your feet warm, which on many days will make your upper body sweat when it doesn’t need to.
- Comfortable to wear for hours
- Only comes in gray color
3. Orvis Women’s Clearwater Waders – NEW
As Orvis’s new entry point women’s water (replacing the Encounter with upgraded features), the women’s Clearwater is a good value for the price.
The Clearwater is specifically designed to fit a woman’s body, with a more modern fit and designed to eliminate bulk, in a modern fit to eliminate traditional bulk.
- Four-layer waterproof breathable nylon fabric is light yet durable
- A 30K Waterproofness and 8K Breathability rating
- Opposing side-release buckles allow for converting to waist-high on warmer days
- External storage pocket with stretch panel for small items and fly boxes, plus a kangaroo-style handwarmer pocket on the front chest
- Updated anatomical neoprene booties with Integrated neoprene gravel guards to reduce water drag and collection
- Low-profile seam construction and low-profile belt loops with 1½” webbing belt included
- Hook and loop patch on interior pocket to attach Orvis waterproof pocket (8G3H sold separately)
- Nylon shell/ polyurethane membrane/nylon tricot liner
- More streamlined cut to reduce the historical wader bulk
- External storage pocket, including a stretch panel
- Kangaroo-style handwarmer pocket
- Updated anatomical neoprene booties with Integrated neoprene gravel guards
- Belt included
- 16 sizes XS-XXL including petite and tall sizes.
- Full set of features, especially relative to reasonable price
- Easy to walk in
- More puncture and abrasion resistant than its predecessor
- Improved pocket configurations
- Improved gravel guards, more snug fit with less water drag
- Holds up to cold
- Not a four-season wader or winter wader
- Just one color – stone
- Still a quality grade below other Orvis wader models
4. Simms Tributary Stockingfoot Waders for Ladies
Simms designed its Tributary Stockingfoot waders for women with the adventurous female angler in mind. The cut and fit allows women to comfortably move through water, making it a strong choice for pros and beginners alike.
- Made of waterproof nylon, with a triple layer upper portion (thigh height and above) and quad-layer lower portion for extra durability
- Fleece-lined pockets for ample warmth
- Neoprene stocking feet with anti-microbial qualities to assure feet warmth in all water conditions
- Built-in gravel guard, that fits tightly with a gathered elastic bottom hem
- Non-stretch, woven nylon waist belt supported by two belt loops
The purpose for manufacturing Simms waders with multi-layered materials is to provide extra protection from the water and elements. What’s more, it has an anti-microbial finish that prevents bad odors, fungi, and mildew. It also features front-zippered smart pockets and fleece-lined inner pockets. Like several other brands, the neoprene booties give you warmth without having to buy a full-body womens neoprene waders. Put it all together, and Simms womens waders are among the most popular available.
- Lightweight, weighing in at 1.84 pounds (average across a range of sizes)
- Anti-microbial finish to combat unsightly fungi and mildew and combat odors
- Offers great comfort with its female-specific fit
- Smart pockets for tools
- Material keeps wearer clean and dry
- Warranty guarantees product repair in case of manufacturing damage
- Limited sizes available
- Water can get into the chest pockets
5. Orvis Women’s Ultralight Convertible Waders
Relatively new and specifically designed for women, the Orvis Women’s Ultralight Convertible Waders have become a popular choice and are among the best fishing waders in the angling community. This ultralight wader features adjustable suspenders that can easily convert the whole piece into a waist-high wader depending on the wearer’s needs – a nice versatile option to have on a warm day in lieu of hip waders. Although lightweight, this wader is made with four layers of material including polyurethane, that will help you warm even during cold days. Orvis waders in general have traditionally always been of high quality and value for the cost, giving the Orvis womens waders a leg up in their newer specific designs for women.
- Quad layer breathable and waterproof nylon shell fabric
- Fidlock Snap magnetic fasteners for effortless and quick waist-high conversion
- Less water collection and drag, thanks to the integrated neoprene gravel guard
- External storage pocket with water-resistant zipper
- Low profile belt loops featuring a 1.5” stretch belt
- Versatile conversion to waist high waders
- Smart pockets for tools
- Wide range of sizes and fit
- Suitable for all weather conditions
- Not enough pockets as some other brands and models
- Pockets may not warm your hands adequately
6. Redington Women’s Sonic-Pro
The bottom line first: we rated the Redington Women’s Sonic-Pro Waders a hard-won “Best Value” rating, because of the excellent fit and superior performance at a reasonable price.
Although it costs less than most of its counterparts, the fit is just as good, and they have a comparable level of features. Kudos for Redington for continually improving it’s women’s waders over the last several years.
Features & Fit
- Cut around the legs fits more like jeans than waders
- Additional vertical seams top to bottom more customer tailored for women
- Soft nylon-twill face fabric is quiet when walking, eliminates “swoosh,” feels more like work pants than plastic
- 4-layer construction emphasizes durability
- Breathability good despite durable construction
- Stretchy mesh back panel, connects shoulder straps to bib
- Booties thicker neoprene than men’s version, to account for women’s circulatory differences
- Anatomically designed curves in booties more specific to women’s feet vs. men’s
- Stretch panels on the sides of the bib to pull waders over hips, and to adapt to various bust sizes, less flappy than many waders
- Chest pouch lined with thin microfleece that adds warmth on cool days
- Bib includes 3 pocket options: pass-through handwarmer, zippered outer pocket, and an open-topped mesh inner pouch with a key clip and a detachable waterproof phone bag
- Excels at extended wear, long dates
- Superior women’s fit, less baggy, more comfortable and flattering fit
- Soft, quiet face fabric
- Comfortable freedom of movement, e.g. climbing banks and over logs
- Bib accommodates various bust sizes
- 9 size fit most size and shapes, including short, tall, and full
- Designed with both warming and cooling characteristics
- Fleece-lined chest pouch
- Strong fabric and long-lasting seams, good for frequent angling
- Lots of pocket / bib storage capacity, enough to leave sling packs behind
- Tight gravel guards stay in place even in swift water and mud
- Welded seams (v.s stitched) leak proof over years
- Multiple pockets add bulk to the bib
- Extra snug gravel guards require extra effort with lacing, even difficulty
- Not suitable for extended cold-weather/water wading (or upsize to fit extra clothing)
- Pocket capacity add bulk to chest zone, and stiffness
- Not designed as a waist wader (but can still roll down bib in warm weather)
7. Patagonia Women’s Spring River Waders
For the woman angler who stays in the water for hours and hours, the Spring River Wader is your go-to gear. Featuring a waist-mounted EZ-Lock suspender, you can easily lower your suit to waist level on warmer days. In addition to that, it has an innovative rear buckle system that makes it easier to take bathroom breaks so you can stay focused on the fishing! Perhaps even better, are that the booties line-up perfectly with poly-grid and quick-draining flat-panel gravel guards. Pricier than many of the other models above, you can count on Patagonia for some of the best womens waders period.
- Polyester microfiber shell with waterproof and breathable barrier
- EZ-lock suspenders for quick and effortless chest to waist conversion
- Reach-through handwarmer pocket
- Poly-grid lined and sock-like fitted booties
- Interior welded TPU-waterproof pocket
- Easy to wear
- Super comfortable
- Comes in 21 different sizes and fits
- Insufficient pockets compared to other brands
- Pricier compared to other women’s waders
8. Simms Women’s G3 Guide Waders
Simms’ G3 Guide Waders guarantee durability and comfort especially when fishing in the cold as it is made from a thick layer of GORE-TEX G3 material. These super-reliable waders provide better coverage with a scalloped top opening that fits higher in the chest and lower at the back. It has zippered chest pockets where you can easily reach necessary tools. This is the most dependable wader for those hard-working anglers, a testimony to the quality designed into Simms womens waders. If you are looking for the best fishing waders money can buy, these and Patagonia are at the top.
- Breathable, durable, and comfortable GORE-TEX material
- Waterproof side zipper
- Fleece-lined, reach-through hand warmer pocket
- Built-in gravel guards with boot hook
- Dual-fit suspender with anchor points specifically designed for women
- Wide variety of sizes
- Not very stylish
- Expensive compared to other brands of waders
Summary of Best Fishing Waders For Women
Just a few years back, only generic waders or those designed specifically for men were available in the market. Today, manufacturers have used advancements in technology to serve the quickly increasing number of female anglers, with an expanding set of offerings designed specifically for women.
In particular, by tailoring the fit and cut, the best womens waders designs allow you to stay more comfortable under warm or cold weather conditions. Well beyond what was ever offered before, the growing number of style and color options let you express your personality even when in the water.
We hope that our list of recommended best fishing waders for women help you choose the right one for you. Look for an upcoming updated with women’s neoprene waders. Whether or not you buy a new pair, be sure to read our Ultimate Guide To Waders. This thorough articles has more details about choosing, storing, and caring for your waders, with specific tips for breathable waders compared to womens neoprene waders, to help them last as long as possible.
What are the best waders for the money?
The best women’s waders for the money, are those that we rate as a “Best Value” purchase using our proprietary rating system. Waders that earn this rating have the most features and performance packed in per dollar, as compared to all other brands and models. In our opinion, the Orvis Women’s Ultralight Convertible Waders, and the Simms Tributary Stockingfoot Waders meet our criteria for “Best Value.” They aren’t cheap or inexpensive, and they aren’t high-end or outrageously expensive, but fit in the middle-tier of waders that are high quality for a moderate price.
What is the best material for waders?
The best material to choose for your waders actually depends on your needs. Most anglers that fish 2-3 out of 4 seasons in the year are comfortable in breathable nylon or Gore-tex fabric, with a waterproof yet still breathable coating. Breathable waders prevent build-up of body expiration, so you won’t get that soggy, clammy feeling. They work best in moderate to warm temperatures. On the other hand, if you fish in colder temperatures, such as winter steelheading, you may prefer a thick pair of neoprene which retains body heat better than any other material, even if not breathable. Most breathable waders have neoprene stocking feet for warmth. Rubber on the other hand is inexpensive, but doesn’t breath and isn’t that warm.
What are the best breathable waders?
In our opinion, the best breathable waders are those constructed of Gore-Tex fabric, with an outer waterproof yet breathable coating. While you’ll pay a bit of a premium for the Gore-Tex brand name, it comes with a quality that ensures both breathability and waterproofness. The highest breathability is measured in terms of how much perspiration is release through the fabric pores, while waterproof-ness is measured in pounds per square inch water pressure that the fabric can withstand. More recently, breathable and water proof nylon fabrics are getting pretty good, but in our opinion don’t last as long and aren’t as comfortable into cooler / colder conditions as Gore-Tex. Neoprene does not breath, nor does rubber. If you’re looking for which brand breathable is the best, be sure to read our reviews!
How do I know what size wader to get?
In our experience, waders fit actually varies quite a bit across different manufacturers, and even across different models within the same brand. For this reason, you can’t rely on an “L” for large in a new brand you want to try, being the same dimensions as a large that may fit comfortably in your current waders. What we suggest is looking at the size and measurement charts that most brands put on their websites and online ordering systems. Once you take your own measurements, you can hone in on which pair is most likely to fit you. Also check out our reviews, which convey customer feedback that a given pair tends to run tighter or looser. Of course nothing beats trying on a pair at the store, but these days almost every online purchase is easily returned. So, there’s little lost in purchasing online, trying them on in the convenience of your home, and returning or exchanging if necessary.
How do I choose the right size waders?
Which chest waders are the best?
For womens chest waders we recommend:
- Caddis Women’s Teal Deluxe Chest Waders
- Redington Women’s Willow River Waders
- Simms Tributary Stockingfoot Waders for Women
- Orvis Women’s Ultralight Convertible Wader
- Patagonia Women’s Spring River Waders
- Simms Women’s G3 Guide Waders
Are Simms waders worth the money?
While many people feel Simms waders and Patagonia waders are expensive, we believe it depends on your usage. If you are investing in travel, you’re a guide, or you fly fish routinely, then the higher price to pay may be worth paying for higher quality. Let’s face it, high-end waders like Simms do cost a chunk of change. Not inexpensive, but if the quality and features are worth it to you, then it makes sense to purchase high-end waders.
What do you wear under waders?
While it certainly depends on whether you are fishing in warm vs. cold weather, some guidelines may be helpful. Try to wear breathable clothing, that won’t get damp and clammy like cotton will. Always have a wading jacket you can wear if weather turns inclement, especially a hooded and insulated jacket if needed. Consider a fleece sweater as a midlayer if it’s really cold, or to wear by itself on cooler days without wind or rain. Of course, if you are steelheading in the winter, just to mention one extreme, you’ll want leggings or long underwear and thick (but not too tight) socks.
Are waders safe?
Waders come with their risks, because they can fill up with water if you fall in, and be hard to swim to safety. Be sure to follow safe wading practices, including wearing a wading belt, using a wading staff, always fish with a friend, and test each step before you commit to it.
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