Clothing for kayaking has the same requirements for most other outdoor activities with a few differences. When deciding what to wear and take along, there are a few basic rules you need to follow. Here are some tips from Crystal Seas for those new to kayaking:
When you choose what to wear, go with the water temperature and not the air temperature. You need to know that there is a high possibility of capsizing and that even in areas where the air temperature is mild, the water can be very cold. The risks are lung and heart shocks to drowning, and hypothermia. Except mild conditions like when you go kayaking San Juans, always wear a wetsuit.
Dress in layers and follow the same thought process as you would dress for other outdoor activities. You need durable clothing that has some level of comfort along with versatility for different conditions. Look at wicking fabric as they dry quicker than wool.
When you wear a long sleeve wetsuit, you won’t need to worry too much about additional layers. Wear some kind of swimwear underneath so you won’t need a private changing area when you want to switch back to normal clothes. When you encounter colder conditions, you will need a thicker suit.
Other items you will need are some kind of neoprene paddling boots, hats for the sun, and paddling gloves. These items are accessories and are not as important as the correct clothing for your environment.