Best BCD For Women

BCD For Women - Reviews & Guides For 2020

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BCD For Women Buyers Guide

The traditional BCDs were designed only for men because they were heavy and big in size. But nowadays, there are a lot of good BCDs available for women.

These BCDs for women are compact, lightweight, and perfect to use. The working process of the BCD is the same as that of the BCDs for men, but there are some significant differences to take into account.

If you love diving, then it is essential to have a good BCD that saves your energy, and you can enjoy the dive like never before.

But do you know how to buy a BCD? Well, purchasing a BCD for women isn't that easy because there are a lot of things to look for.

You need a BCD that is lightweight, versatile and is durable so that you have a decent experience with it.

To help you make an informed decision, we are here with this definitive buyer’s guide. The guide contains various factors that you should look for before buying the BCD.

What is a BCD for Women? And How Does it Work?

BCD, or commonly known as buoyancy compensator device, is useful for divers. The scuba BCD gives you the buoyancy you need while diving. There is an air bladder inside the BCD that impacts the weight of the device and helps you go up and down in the water.

There are plenty of reasons to use a BCD as it helps you in saving energy and gives you swift movements under water.

The working process of a scuba BCD for women isn’t that complex. You have full control over the inflatable bladder that is located inside the shell of the BCD. When you add air to the bladder, it helps you float in water, and you can come up to the water surface.

On the other hand, when the bladder deflates, then you get down into the water. With enough air inside the bladder, you can sustain your position while diving, and it will help you swim in a straight line without many efforts.

The BCD for women is like a jacket that you can wear over the wetsuit. No matter if you are a professional or a recreational diver, using a scuba BCD is a great idea if you don’t want your gas tank to end up quickly.

Buying a BCD for women vs. renting

Scuba BCDs for women are available on rent, and most people think that renting the BCD will be better than buying one. Here we have listed the difference between buying and renting the BCD so that you can decide whether you should buy one or renting it will be enough.

Comfortable

When you buy a BCD, expect it to be comfortable. Buying a BCD gives you the freedom to choose any one out of the multiple options. On the other hand, when you rent a BCD, you don't get many options. You have to settle down with the available options only, whether they are comfortable or not.

Saves you money

If you have ever rented a BCD, then you will surely agree that it isn't an inexpensive deal. The rent of the BCD can be significantly high because of various reasons such as high demand during the season. Buying a BCD will save you money in the long run, and there is no need to worry about renting hours to get expired while you are diving with your buddies.

The right fit

It is important to get a BCD that offers the right fit. A BCD with a poor fit won’t reward you with a great experience, and it can happen when you rent it. Purchasing a BCD for women will let you choose the right size according to your body stature.

So now, it is clear that buying a BCD is a good idea rather than renting one. Read on to find out more about the factors that you should look for when buying a BCD for women.

Things to look for when buying a BCD for women

Choosing the right buoyancy control device is a crucial decision as it is something you will use while diving. So, it is critical to buy the best one. When looking for a BCD, you should pay attention to a plethora of factors such as the size, floatation, type, and other things such as pockets.

Below we have highlighted some crucial things that you need to look for before buying a BCD. Now down the factors listed below to ensure that you can buy the best buoyancy control device.

Type of BCDs for women

There are different types of BCDs available for women, and you should choose the one depending on your budget and skill level. If you are a recreational diver, you should look for a basic BCD; on the other hand, professional divers should consider a good BCD with different features.

Here are the common types of BCDs for women:

Back inflate BCD

These BCDs come with a bigger air bladder fitted in the back of the device. The area around the chest feels uncluttered, and you can use the D-rings to take a flashlight or other such things while diving. These BCDs are extremely popular among professional divers because of their versatility and functionality.

The BCD will help you position your body horizontally with the face down so that you can swim with ease while maintaining the position. The BCD is good if you want to enjoy the coral reef or diving with a team.

The BCD doesn’t feel restrictive as the air bladder is at the back, and you get more free area to move your arms freely. Furthermore, with this BCD, you will find it easy to maintain a horizontal swimming position, which means less resistance from water, and your oxygen tank will last longer due to less energy consumption.

There is no bulky weight belt available with the BCD, and using it is easy. A lot of scuba divers these days are using back inflated BCD because of the unmatched benefits that it offers. If you need ultimate stability under water and the ease of accessing the D-rings with comfortable movements of the arms, go for a back inflate BCD for women.

Back plate and wing BCD

The back plate and wing BCD is something you can use anywhere because of its versatility. These BCDs are not that bulky as compared to back inflate BCD. You will find a range of options available in these BCDs. You can choose a combination of wing and back plate depending on personal preferences.

If you are an instructor, then these BCDs can be a great choice. You can customize the buoyancy control device as per your requirements to use it while diving. With the BCD, you can easily swim inside the wrecks and caves.

Also, they are great for technical diving. Back plate BCDs are not good for women that are a beginner and are learning scuba diving.

Hybrid BCD

Hybrid BCDs for women are considered as the best option for recreational divers and beginners. The air bladder is available at the sides of the BCD, and you will get a clean front and back. You can use these BCDs for diving horizontally and in a flat position.

The cut design of the BCD lets you feel relaxed and comfortable so you can dive for longer. The BCD is popular among beginners, recreational divers, and even some instructors love to use it due to the comfort it offers.

Side mount BCD

A side mount BCD is the smallest among all. The BCD is ideal for divers that are into technical diving where there is less space to wear a full-fledged BCD. The BCD is sleek and allows you to dive through caves and wrecks without colliding with anything.

The air bladder of the BCD is smallest among all due to its compact size. You can carry two tanks with the BCD to enjoy technical diving.

Side mount BCD is also gaining a lot of popularity, and women divers love to use it.

Jacket-style BCD

The jacket-style BCD is the most common type as they are inexpensive and easy to use. If you are a recreational diver who needs a comfortable BCD, then go for jacket-style BCD. The BCDs don't have high-end features, but you will get everything that you need, such as D-rings and multiple pockets.

Integrated weight pockets

Modern BCDs are designed in a way that there is no need to use a weighted belt. The BCDs for women come with integrated weight pockets, where you can attach the weight to get down in the water.

You can release the weight whenever required to come up to the surface of the water. The number of pockets depends on the type of BCD you are going for. BCDs for technical divers have multiple integrated weight pockets so you can attach more weight bags with them.

However, it will impact the overall weight of the BCD.

Trim pockets

When choosing a BCD based on the integrated weight pockets, have a look at the trim pockets as well. You will see the trim pockets available on the top of the BCD. The purpose of these pockets is the same as that of the integrated weight pockets, but you cannot release the weight.

The trim pockets will help you get a stable swimming position so you can balance your body without any difficulties. When choosing a BCD with trim pockets, make sure that the weight is ideal as per your requirements so that you can swim with ease.

Fit

When buying a BCD for women, it is important to make sure that the size is perfect so that the BCD hugs you tightly, and you can enjoy the dive. Buy a body control device depending on your body stature. You should check the size chart to ensure that the BCD offers a great fit.

There is a thumb rule used by a lot of women when buying a BCD, and that is the tee-shirt rule. You should buy a BCD that is of the right size as your t-shirt. However, it should be a bit large so that you can wear a wetsuit with it.

However, make sure that the BCD isn't too baggy as it can be difficult to access the D-rings and the integrated weight pockets.

Easy to use

The BCD should be easy to use so that you don’t have to fuss about the features it offers. Most of the BCDs for women are easy to use, but it would be great to check it before buying anything. Know about the features that the BCD offer to ensure that you need them, and there is nothing that you don’t want to use.

Lift capacity

The lift capacity of the BCD is how much weight it can handle. You should buy a buoyancy control device that can handle your weight with ease, and you can come to the water surface quickly by inflating the air bladder.

Generally, the lift capacity of the women’s BCD is less than BCDs for men. The most common lift capacity of the BCD for women is 25 pounds.

As you weigh less in water, the weight capacity shouldn’t match your body weight. If you weigh heavier, then you can go for a BCD with a bigger lift capacity.

Quick dump valves

The quick dump valves let you cross the rapids and other obstacles with ease. You can inflate or deflate the air through the dump valves to get the required buoyancy. If you are going down quickly, then use these valves to get some buoyancy so that you get ultimate stability while diving.

On the other hand, you can use the same valves to go upwards quickly without exhausting your energy.

Most BCDs come with two or three quick dump valves, but some high-end BCDs have more valves.

D-rings

You will see multiple D-rings on the shoulder straps of the BCDs. These things will let you carry things such as flashlights, GPS, and much more. The choice is ultimately up to you, as you have to decide how many D-rings you need.

However, it is suggested to buy a BCD with at least 3-4 D-rings.

Pockets

Similar to the D-rings, you should check the number of pockets available in a BCD. The pockets will help you carry stuff such as keys and other things that you want to take with you while diving. The pockets of the BCD aren't waterproof, so don't take items that can get damaged due to water.

Weight of the BCD

Check the weight of the BCD to ensure that you can travel with it. Go for a BCD that is lightweight and compact so that you can carry it on a plane. The weight of the BCD depends on multiple factors, such as the type, size, and much more.

You should go for a moderately weighted BCD that is durable and easy to carry.

Durability

It is important to buy a BCD for women that is durable and lasts longer. When you are buying a BCD, make sure that it is made using quality materials so that there are no damages to it after a few months only.

Check the material of the BCD to determine its durability. Another thing that you should check is customer reviews. Go through some reviews to find out how durable the BCD is and how long it will last.

Comfort

The comfort offered by a BCD depends on multiple things such as the type, size, and fit. You should select a BCD that is perfect according to your skill level. Check the design of the BCD, and it should offer you a comfortable fit.

The shoulder straps should have padding so that you don’t feel uncomfortable while diving. Also, the dump valves should be accessible so you can quickly inflate or deflate them whenever required.

Another thing to check is the weight of the BCD, as wearing a heavy BCD can be challenging.

Warranty

Go for a BCD that comes with a decent warranty. A buoyancy control device is a crucial device that you will use while diving, so it should come with a warranty for extra assurance. Buy branded BCDs only to ensure that they don’t malfunction while diving, and you can dive with ease.

Price

The price of the women's BCD depends on multiple things, such as the type, size, and brand. In order to buy a BCD under your budget, it is essential to make a budget beforehand. Decide how much you are willing to spend and then start looking for a BCD.

Accessories to buy with a BCD for women

After you decide which scuba BCD to buy, it is time to buy some accessories with it if you want to have a smooth experience while diving.

Check out these accessories that you should consider buying with a BCD for women.

  • Storm whistle

Get a good quality storm whistle that you can use in the event of an emergency to alert other scuba divers. You can clip on the storm whistle with the D-ring of the BCD so that it is accessible all the time.

  • Dive flashlight

A waterproof dive flashlight will help you dive through wrecks and caves. Go for a flashlight that comes with a lanyard strap so that you can attach it with the D-ring.

  • Line cutter

Being a diver, you can understand the importance of a line cutter. The line cutter or diving knife will help you cut the fishing lines, nets and to scare the aquatic animals.

  • Surface marker buoy

The surface marker buoy will help the team on the boat to find out your exact location. The buoy looks like a big sausage filled with air, and it is visible from a distance. You should carry an SMB with you as it can save your life in emergencies.

  • Pointer stick

You can use the pointer stick to collect samples from the bottom of the ocean. Also, the stick will help you keep fishes and other aquatic animals away.

FAQs: Best BCD for Women

Q: How many D-rings a BCD should have?

A: It is a matter of personal preference. The number of D-rings the BCD should come with depends on what you want to take along while diving. Usually, BCDs come with 3-4 D-rings, but you can even go for buoyancy control devices with more rings if required.

Q: How to wash a BCD?

A: Washing a BCD is easy, as all you need to do is rinse it with water. When you dive in the ocean, the minerals or salt gets deposited on the BCD that can damage the fabric. Always rinse the BCD with freshwater before packing it.

Q: How long does a BCD last?

A: The life of the BCD depends on multiple things such as how frequently you are using it and the wear and tear it experiences while diving. If you buy a BCD following this buyer's guide, expect it to last for a few years without any issues.

However, the lifespan of the BCD depends on its maintenance and upkeep. So always keep it clean, and inspect it thoroughly before using it for the dive.

Q: Why does the weight capacity matter?

A: There are many reasons why the weight capacity of the BCD matters a lot. The weight capacity of the BCD should depend on your body stature. If you are heavy, then you should go for a BCD with a bigger weight capacity.

The normal weight capacity available with BCD for women is around 25 lbs. But you will find different models with varying weight capacities.

Conclusion

With this buyer's guide, you can expect to buy the best BCD for women. We have covered almost everything that you should know about the device before buying it. Make a list of BCDs that fall in your budget and then compare them based on these factors.

A buoyancy control device is something that you will be using under water, so it should be functional and easy to use. Make sure to go through customer reviews to know more about the BCD you are planning to buy.

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