Women are making an impact on agriculture. Today, women account for 36% of farmers. Over the past 5 years the number of female farmers has been steadily rising. In the world of apiculture, local beekeeping clubs comprise of nearly 50% women, with many in leadership roles.
Whether it be commercial or hobby beekeeping, many women are successful beekeepers. So it’s no surprise that some companies have started to develop bee suits for women. Of course, beekeeping is no fashion show, but it is nice to have a bee suit that is made to fit the smaller frame of a woman.
What to Look For in Bee Suits for Women
If you are shopping for a bee suit for a man, woman, or child, you should consider the following:
- Veil Type
- Jacket vs Full Suit
This is probably the most important thing to look for when buying bee suits for women. For some reason, many bee suits run large and it can be difficult to find smaller sizes. And while it’s okay to wear an oversized bee suit, you may find it to be hot and uncomfortable.
A proper fitting bee suit should not be too big or too small. A large bee suit would be difficult to move around in, and a suit that is too small could be uncomfortable and leave skin exposed. Choose a bee suit that is slightly loose so you can move around freely.
A feature I always look for in bee suits is elastic at the wrists and ankles. The elastic helps to close off any openings that bees could crawl through. If buying a bee jacket make sure that the jacket covers your entire torso, even when moving around. Many bee jackets feature elastic at the waist as well.
Traditional bee suits are made out of thick cotton canvas. This material does a great job of protecting against bee stings. However, a downside to canvas is that it can get hot.
If you live in a warmer climate you may opt for a ventilated bee suit. These suits are made out of many layers of a mesh fabric. Ventilated bee suits are known to be much more breathable than canvas suits.
Many bee suits for women include an attached veil. This is very useful because you don’t have to buy veil separately. These veils often zipper onto the bee suit at the neck area so the bees don’t have an opening to sneak into.
Beekeeping veils come in different shapes. The most common veil style I see included with beekeeping suits is the fencing veil. This is also sometimes called a hood veil. The shape of this veil resembles that of a fencer’s mask.
Another common beekeeping veil is the round veil. This veil looks like a hat with a large brim, covered with netting. This type of veil offers good visibility.
The last type of beekeeping veil is called the square veil. This veil is different than the others because it comes in 2 pieces. You’ll need a hat or helmet, then the square shaped veil is placed over it. The square shape of the veil is constructed with wire to help it keep it’s shape.
Traditional bee suits are white. This is because it is thought that bees find lighter colors calming. However, the color of your bee suit does not matter. Nowadays there are bee suits in many different colors and designs. Choose one that you like best.
An alternative to a full bee suit is a bee jacket. Bee jackets are easy to put on and take off. Since jackets don’t cover your entire body you won’t get as hot in them. However, bee jackets are only good for protecting your upper body, so you must wear thick jeans with them. For best protection find a bee jacket with elastic at the waist so bees won’t be able to climb into your jacket.
Depending on your level of comfort around bees you may find a bee jacket to be a good choice for you. Some beekeepers like to wear a bee jacket for quick hive inspections and a full bee suit for more invasive tasks like honey harvesting.
Where to Buy Bee Suits For Women
Even though beekeeping is becoming a rather popular hobby it can be difficult to find beekeeping supplies in person. The solution to that is to order online. Retailers like Amazon offer fast, free shipping and returns, so now bee suits are available to anyone with a computer.
If you are interested in bee suits for women see below for our reviews and recommendations.
6 Best Bee Suits for Women
- Available in sizes XXS – XXXL
- Comes in multiple colors – pink, camouflage, khaki, olive, sand, white
- Material is 65% Cotton & 35% Polyester for strength and durability
- Self supporting veil is made of non-flammable mesh
- Elastic at wrists, waist, and ankles
Natural Apiary makes great, high quality bee suits. The first thing that caught my eye about this suit is the color. While most suits come in white, this one comes in a pleasing shade of pink. However, if pink isn’t your color it also comes in white, sand, olive, khaki and camouflage print. I also like that this suit comes in many sizes – as small as XXS, and as large as XXXL.
The material of this bee suit is 65% cotton & 35% polyester. It’s a good blend that offers both durability and comfort. The fabric has good ventilation and protects well against bee stings. It is machine washable (remove the veil first) and should be line dried. People who own this suit report that their suits did not shrink after washing.
This bee suit has industrial strength elastic at the wrists and ankles. A great feature this suit has that other full suits don’t is elastic at the waist. It’s a great design feature that allows for this suit to fit many body types very comfortably. This is the perfect bee suit for women who want their suit to be strong, durable, and well tailored.
- Available in sizes XS- XXXL
- Ventilated and ultralight material
- Elasticated waistband and cotton cuffs, plus elastic thumb & foot loops
- Multiple pockets and cotton knee pads
- Two year warranty
Bees & Co prides itself on having developed the lightest and coolest beekeeping suit on the market. In fact, at only 2 lbs, Bees & Co claims to have the lightest bee suit in the world. Full beekeeping suits can be bulky and heavy, so a 2 pound bee suit is very comfortable and easy to move around in.
This bee suit comes in one color – white, and the fit is true to size. A removable fencing veil is included as well. The wrists and ankles of the suit have strong elastic to keep bees out. The elastic thumb and foot loops ensure that the sleeves stay in place.
A nice feature of this bee suit is the cotton knee pads. It adds extra strength and comfort to the knee area. There are two pockets located on the legs that are for holding your hive tool.
You can buy this bee suit without worry because Bees & Co offers a 100% money back guarantee if you are not satisfied with the suit. On top of that, they also offer a 2 year manufacturer’s warranty. Overall, this is a great bee suit for women that want something lightweight.
- Available in sizes L – XXL
- Made of premium white cotton
- Self supported veil hood
- Elastic at wrists and ankles
Honey Keeper is known for their quality and affordable beehives, so I’m happy to see that they have bee suits too. This full bee suit is made of premium white cotton. It is not ventilated, but still lightweight and durable. Unfortunately, the sizes are pretty limited. At the time of this review, only sizes L – XXL are available. Maybe they’ll make more sizes in the future.
This suit comes with a fencing style veil. The hood of the veil contains wires that help to keep it’s shape and keep the screen out of the beekeeper’s face. This type of veil offers great visibilty from all angles. The hood also folds flat for storage.
There is elastic at the wrists and ankles, which offers great protection and stops bees from getting in. I also like that this bee suit is machine washable. Just be sure to remove the hood first, as that part of the suit must be washed by hand.
This is a good, basic beekeeping suit that does it’s job. Sizes are limited, so it will only work for you if you can fit a size L – XXL. However, multiple reviews say that you should order a size up, as this suit runs a little small.
- Available in sizes XXS – L
- Made of 100% cotton
- Comes in khaki
- 2 pieces – the jacket and pants are not attached
- Removable fencing veil
- Includes gloves
This beekeeping suit, made by Honey Bee Safe is made of 100% cotton. That means this suit is not ventilated, but it is very durable. It comes in one color, which is khaki. The sizes range from XS to Large.
It features a detachable fencing style veil that is self supported. That means that the mesh will be kept away from your face. The wrist and ankle areas are closed off with elastic and elastic thumb loops and stirrups keep everything in it’s place.
The thing that caught my eye with this suit is that it is 2 separate pieces. Most full bee suits are one piece and can be a bit cumbersome to get into. This suit however, is in 2 pieces – the jacket and pants are separate. That means it’s a breeze to get in and out of it. Remember to tuck the jacket into the pants when you are wearing it though. That will stop bees from getting into the jacket.
The design of this suit is quite nice and I like that you have options with it. For example, you can wear just the jacket if you choose to. Overall, this is a great option if you prefer to wear separates.
- Available in sizes XS – XXL
- Cotton poly-blend material
- 10 pockets, some with velcro flaps
- Elastic wrists and ankles
- Heavy duty metal zippers
- 100% money back 60 day guarantee
Buzz Beekeeping Supplies prides itself on having products designed by beekeepers, for beekeepers. This means that their design takes into account real issues that actual beekeepers have with bee suits. In this case, the goal of this bee suit for women is to have a full bee suit with a veil that stays in place.
The fencing veil is detachable and attaches with a heavy duty double slider zipper. It offers good visibility and comfort. With this bee suit, all entry points are covered, so there is no chance of bees getting in. Elastic closes any opening at the wrists and ankles.
This bee suit has many deep and easy to reach pockets which come in handy for holding tools. Some pockets have velcro flap closures to ensure that nothing falls out. The material of this suit is a poly-cotton blend. Zippers on the legs make it easy to put on and take off.
Also included are family honey bee car stickers. They are full color vinyl decals that can be placed on your car or elsewhere. The stickers are cute, and this is the first bee suit I’ve seen that includes stickers, so it’s a nice touch.
- 3 layers of ventilated mesh fabric
- Available in sizes XXS – XXXL
- Comes in 4 colors – white, khaki, sand, and pink
- 2 non-flammable mesh veils – one round and one fencing
- Elastic at wrists and ankles
This is the second bee suit from Natural Apiary on this list. It’s no surprise because Natural Apiary is known for making high quality bee suits. This particular suit is very similar to the Apiarist beekeeping suit (reviewed above), but with one major difference. This beekeeping suit is ventilated.
3 layers of ventilated poly-cotton mesh fabric make this bee suit both protective and comfortable. The fabric allows for maximum airflow and movement, while also preventing any bee stings. This suit provides a 4-5 mm gap between layers. That creates the necessary distance needed to protect against bee stings.
This bee suit includes 2 veils – one round style veil and one fencing veil. That way you can choose which style you like best. Both veils are made from non-flammable mesh. This is to protect you from any flash flames from your smoker. Both veils offer great visibility by using Natural Apiary’s patented mesh.
The arm and leg sleeves are extra reinforced for added protection. Elastic closes up the wrist and ankle areas. Strong zippers are also at the legs, making this suit easy to put on and take off. The large patch pockets are great for holding tools.
With all of these great features and 2 veils, this is certainly a premium beekeeping suit. This bee suit may cost a little more than others, but if you live in a hot climate it is worth it to get a ventilated bee suit.
When buying a bee suit for women consider the following: the fit, material, veil type, color, and design. The bee suits I reviewed above have many different benefits and features. Use this guide to help you find the best bee suit for your needs.