best gift for surfers
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Best Gifts for Surfers

When looking for a gift for a surfer, we tend to immediately think of surfboards or wetsuits. This article will present gifts that you can get them that will make them smile from ear to ear.

best gifts for surfers

Contrary to popular belief, it’s not hard to find the perfect gift for your dear surfing friend. Don’t dwell on the essentials; they probably already have more wetsuits than they can dry out, and you won’t surprise them with the board that they’ve always wanted because the chances are that they’ve already got it.

The important part is to listen to them while they’re speaking. Most surfers will flat out tell you or complain about accessories that they’re missing; materials, fabrics, and substances that they adore, and even how their pet pug is the best surfer you’ve ever seen. 

Nevertheless, if you still haven’t got a good idea in which direction to go, we’ve compiled a list that will get any surfer excited for what’s coming their way. Let’s start the countdown, shall we?

Surf Wax

You cannot go wrong with surfboard wax. No matter how much they have and how frequently or infrequently they maintain their board, every surfer out there could do with some more surf wax. There is only one rule: make sure that you take a glance at what they’re already using before you pull the trigger on the wax box set. You don’t want to make the mistake of giving them the brand that their ex used to get them on every anniversary. On a serious note, it’s always a good idea to stick to a single wax brand.

The most popular and coveted wax choices on the market when it comes to fiberglass boards are the Sex Wax Surf Wax and Sticky Bumps Original Surf Wax

Once that’s out of the way, the next thing that you’ll want to focus on is getting the right wax in accordance with the water type and temperature. This part is a lot easier, as all you have to do is ask the vendor which one you should pick. If you really want to get it right, feel free to check out our tips on waxing a surfboard and the top five surf wax brands.

However, suppose you’re short on time and absolutely have to make a pick in the dark. In that case, a good rule of thumb is that if the surfer resides on the west coast, cool and cold wax will probably do just fine in most cases, whereas the tropical water boards of Hawaii need a softer coating.



I know what you’re thinking—why would I get them a leash? They already have one. Yes, they probably do, but for some strange reason, most surfers do not have a spare leash with them. Why? It’s just one of those surf mysteries that doesn't have a logical explanation. Leashes aren’t indestructible, contrary to what most surfers out there believe. 

There is only one thing to keep an eye for, besides the color, of course, and that is the length of the leash. The leash has to be as long—or longer—than the board itself in order to allow the surfer enough leeway to move about freely without getting entangled or knotting themselves in. 

One of the brand leaders, when it comes to quality and reliability, is the world-famous Dakine. They carry all shapes and sizes. And yes, colors too. 


surfing fins

Much like the leashes, surfers always forget to get themselves a set of spare fins. This gift is a bit more tricky because it is somewhat more technical in nature but not something that’s difficult to get right. 

You have two main options, either ask the surfer upfront or snap a good picture when nobody's looking and take that to your local surf equipment outlet. They’ve seen their fair share of fins by now, and they’ll immediately recognize what you are after. 

One of the most prominent vendors where you’ll be able to find a great selection of fins is Jack’s Surfboards. The store has a massive selection of all kinds of surf fins; everything from Captain Fin to Futures is up for grabs at competitive prices. 

Wetsuit Optionals

Yes, as it turns out, most surfers can’t quite make it inside their wetsuits on their own. If you have a close relationship with the surfer in question, you’ve probably heard them complaining about how often they get stuck midway through.

Probably the most utilized item when it comes to wetsuit aid is the dive skin. Surfers usually have a thin lycra-based dive skin that wraps around from their ankles, right up to the waist. This way, the wetsuit never gets stuck on the surfer’s skin. Even more so, it serves as additional protection against sea monsters… Well, such as corals. 


Of course, there was a time when dive skins weren’t widely available, so surfers used to put on some pantyhose or long-sleeve leotards and call it a day. 

In fact, some of them still do. This is a tricky one though—you have to assess the situation with utmost care before you show up at their doorstep with a discount pack of pantyhose.



alt text line: vaseline

Another viable option for surfers that aren’t into the whole pantyhose and leotard look is a lubricant. Be mindful to stick to water-based lubricants if you consider this route because oil-based solutions like petroleum can and probably will degrade the neoprene wetsuit.

The bottom line is that neoprene doesn’t like dry and ashy surfaces, so in order to save your dear surf friend from falling flat on the sand for everyone to see, give them a hand, be it indirectly. 

Changing Towel

changing towel for surfers

This one seems like an obvious accessory for every surfer to have, but you’ll be surprised at how many surfers are struggling to get in and out of wetsuits on a daily basis because they can’t be bothered to bring a poncho towel along. Although we don’t recommend that you go crazy for a top-shelf towel, not all changing towels are made equal. What you are after is a changing towel that is made out of microfiber. They’re affordable, useful, and practical. 

One of the most popular choices among professional surfers is The Slowtide Quick-dry Changing Poncho. The Poncho comes with a big front pocket that makes even the most difficult of maneuvers easy to navigate. 

Changing Mat

Surfers who are into equipment will probably be very thankful if you decide to gift them a brand new changing mat. While we are aware that not every surfer out there loves carrying a full trunk of extras that will make their venture clean and tidy, most of them have rituals and practices that they go through before and after riding the waves. The great news is that most of the changing mats on the market today double as dry bags that can hold the wetsuits once they’re off.

The Ho Stevie! is an excellent affordable option that gets the job done, but if you want to go for something more expensive and nature-esque, Northcore has you covered.  


surfboard straps

Here’s where you can’t miss. Literally every surfer on the planet wants the best for their gear. It’s not unusual for surfers to take excessive extra measures when transporting their equipment. It goes with the territory, and at the end of the day, when we’re out at sea we’re counting on the gear to pull through. Our lives depend on it. 

Providing a dear surfer with some extra tie-down straps will be welcome even by the most casual of riders. Can’t go wrong with some Dorsal straps.

Rack Pads

surfboard rack pads

While we’re on the transport side of things, a rack pad is yet one more best gift a surfer could get. A good rack pad will provide plenty of separation between the board and the roof of the car, ensuring the surfboard makes the trip unscathed. 

The Dakine Aero rack pads are some of the best on the market, and they provide all the necessary cushioning for even the biggest and heaviest of boards out there. 

Wetsuit Shampoo

wetsuit shampoo

An awesome gift that clearly doesn’t get as much attention as it ought to is the wetsuit shampoo. You can imagine the condition a wet wetsuit gets in after a few intense and inevitably sweaty surfing sessions. Most surfers don’t even consider equipping themselves with a wet suit shampoo before it’s too late. 

You can’t go wrong with some Jaws Slosh. Just be careful that they don’t take your gift as a suggestion of bad hygiene. Or, you know what? Maybe they should. 

Ear Plugs

This one is an absolute must for every surfer that wants to engage in everything beyond standup paddle. The ear canals are very sensitive to temperature and moisture, so it makes all the sense in the world to protect them from the elements. 

You can’t go wrong with the standard SurfEars 3.0 from Surf Ears. However, if you’d like more options and contemporary picks for the best earplugs, check out our guide.


sunscreen for surfers

This one is definitely a gift that will take a bit of research and prior knowledge because if there was variety on the market when it comes to sun protection, it lies with the thousand-fold offering of sunscreens. There are a lot of things to consider when purchasing sunscreen. Yes, most of us just grab the first bottle of the racks and call it a day, but there is more to that, especially for surfers that do and will spend a great deal of their lives in the roaring sun. 

The most important feature, of course, is that the sunscreen does its job and that it’s reef-safe. Easy enough, right? Well, not really. Most sunscreen brands do not label their products as reef-safe, even if they are, so you might be in for somewhat of a juggling act before you’re in the right. Harmful chemicals such as octinoxate as well as oxybenzone are completely banned from a lot of competitions and organized surfing events, and justifiably so.  

But how can we know what’s in the sunscreen if the companies aren’t required by law to list them on their packaging? A good place to start is just taking a look if the words active ingredients are written out anywhere on the packaging. If they are, then that sunscreen probably contains some chemicals that will harm the ocean and its inhabitants. 

The only active ingredient that can be found in most reef-safe sunscreens is non-nano zinc oxide. Brands that produce reef-safe sunscreens make it a point of emphasis to have this listed on the label and not just simply write active ingredients in order to separate themselves from the harmful sunscreens on the market. 

Here are a couple of great sunscreens to check out. Try the Babo Botanicals Sport Stick and the Badger Clear Zinc Sport Sunscreen. You won’t go wrong with either.

Traction Pads

Not much to be said for this one. Traction pads wear out because they’re constantly subjected to grueling conditions and wet feet. The “take a snap when no one is looking” tactic works well in this scenario as well. Just show it to your local outlet expert, and they should be able to fix you right up. All surfers love a good traction pad. 

Be sure to browse Creatures USA for some of the best pads on the market. 

A Surfboard Repair Kit

Now, this might be something along the lines of getting someone a toolbox for their birthday. Not everyone will gel with this because not everyone wants to do expensive repair work to their surf rig by themselves. Moreover, some surfers actually prefer the worn-out look. In their eyes, it sort of gives the board character. 

That being said, there are surfers who all but live for endlessly tweaking and polishing their trusty surfboards. So, this one comes down to style. Know who you’re dealing with before committing to a repair kit purchase. So which one should you get? Well, there are a lot of options based on what your needs and preferences might be. 

Nevertheless, you can’t go wrong with the Solarez full repair kit. It will be more than enough to flesh out even the nastiest of dings and scratches. 

Surfboard Bike Rack

surfboard bike rack

We all know that most surfers are very mindful of the environment and have a deep-rooted connection to nature. That’s why you constantly keep seeing individuals paddling away on bicycles and enormous keel-like boards. Besides being environmentally friendly and getting a good pre-workout, there is also the perk of not having to deal with any traffic jams and, most importantly, endlessly searching for a parking spot. 

So, if you know that a dear surfer is taking the bike route to the beach, then a good dependable surfboard rack for their bike is a no-brainer. Mundo Surf has some killer deals. 

Cold Weather Surf Gear

Yes, it's true, when we think about surfing, we immediately imagine hot summer days, filled with sunshine, a warm breeze for days. However, at least half of the world's surfing population has to deal with temperatures that venture more on the freezing end of the spectrum.  During the winter, cold weather surf gear is not only necessary but paramount for having a successful day without putting your health at risk. 

That being said, there’s no single particular product we can suggest here, so feel free to take a look at the following entries.


booties for surfers

When the water is ice cold, and a surfer sets out to sea, it’s essential to have at least 3 mm of protection between their skin and the board. This will not only protect them from the cold but will also provide a coating for their skin. Anyone who has made the grave undertaking of jumping in the ice waters barefoot knows the score. Luckily, it’s usually a mistake that happens once and never again. 

Solite makes some of the most eye-catching and appealing surf booties around.


Maybe not as important as the booties, but certainly a good asset to have on hand are surfing gloves. Even though gloves aren’t considered as essential equipment on cold weather surfs, there is a big difference that a thin 1 or 2 mm glove coating can do. If the shore where your dear surfing friend is up and about is exceptionally cold, don’t hesitate to reach for the thicker 3 mm gloves as well. They will thank you. 

Have a look at these ONE surf gloves before you make your final verdict. 


hood for surfers

Most surfers that do the largest bulk of their surfing activities among cold waters usually have hooded wetsuits on. The purpose of these suits is to provide the most amount of heat preservation and separation from the outside environment. 

These might not be for everyone because they are a good deal thicker and more padded on the edges, so they might cause discomfort to surfers that aren't used to wearing them. The best way to figure out if a dear surfer of yours would be excited about one is to check if they already have one. If they do, then they could probably do with one more hooded wetsuit. 

Again ONE has some excellent offers to consider.

Beach Towel

This one is definitely an accessory that every surfer absolutely needs. There is an enormous selection of standard and deluxe towels that come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Just make sure that the towel matches most of their wetsuit attire, and you’ll be right on the money. 

Coffee Table Surf Books

coffee table surf books

Yes, for most surfers, surfing isn’t simply an activity that they partake in; it's a way of life and a 24-hour obsession. So, what do surfers do when they’re not surfing? Reading, talking, and thinking about surfing, of course. A chic coffee table surf book will be nothing short of a bullseye.

Much like the towel department, surf coffee table books come in various iterations. Here is a great gift idea: why don’t you get them a surf book that’s signed by one of their favorite surfers? A lot of surf coffee table books have a personalization option on purchase. Just track down the guy or gal that your favorite surfer is in awe of, and they’ll cherish your gift till the end of time.  

Surfline Premium Subscription

What do all surfers have in common? Well, for one thing, they’re constantly on the hunt for the best and biggest waves. How are they doing that? They’re on Surfline, watching live feeds of surf locations that are within their reach. Why not surprise your dear surfers by getting them a monthly or yearly subscription to Surfline Premium. This way, they can track down the best surfs of the day without having to go through multiple ads.

Dawn Patrol App

The Dawn Patrol app is a convenient little piece of software that can be synced to a portable smart device, such as an Apple watch. The app is able to track a lot of parameters that can help surfers take their game to the next level. They’ll be able to see the distance surfed, preview a wave count, the time that it took them to get on every one of those waves, and of course, keep an eye on the maximum speeds that they reached. 

Here is where it really gets interesting; When you have the app on to catch a wave that is registered by a coast video camera, the video is automatically tailored and sent to you. Surfers are able to amass a huge library, compile their best rides, and send them out to their friends or competitors. 

A Few Words Before You Go…

Look, for the avid surfer, it’s always a surf session. The best gifts are the ones that help surfers with developing new surf skills and make it easier for them to manage their surf trip. It can be anything really. You don’t have to venture far—your local surf shop probably has a perfect surf gift. 

Anything from surf watches, vouchers for surf trips, some awesome stocking stuffers, a new surf suit, surf hats, a surf poncho, multi-colored surfboard fins, surfboard socks, beach towels, roof racks, a wax comb, or even some even surf sessions if they’re a beginner surfer, will do just great.

Now that you’ve gone through our surf gift guide, we hope that you already have a list of awesome gift ideas for the next special occasion.

Written by
Jeremy Dean
surf coaching