Woman in a swimming robe

The best change robes to keep you warm this winter

Keep your body and hands toasty as the temperatures plummet this winter, and tackle the beach, open water or great outdoors with our tried and tested range of changing robes.

Wild swimming! Outdoor swimming! Cold water dipping!

Whatever you want to call it. These days, it’s almost impossible to scroll Instagram without being bombarded with images of people out #wildswimming. 

And it’s no wonder. For thousands of years, the benefits of water have been hailed, and we now find ourselves fully submerged in a world obsessed with cold water therapy.

It’s clear for all to see that there has been a significant increase in the number of swimmers engaging in outdoor swimming in recent years.

From lakes and lochs to rivers and the sea, this invigorating activity has gained popularity. However, the chilly temperatures can be a challenge, which is where changing robes come into play.

Changing robes—or dry robes—which have been around for quite some time, are currently enjoying a surge in popularity. These robes are specially designed to help you stay warm and comfort swimmers after they emerge from the water.

With insulation and a fleece lining, these robes quickly dry and warm you up. They are also generously sized, providing ample coverage to allow you to change out of your wet gear and into something warmer without the risk of exposing yourself to unsuspecting passers-by.

Now a must-have accessory for outdoor swimmers, they offer not only warmth and comfort but also privacy when changing.

Plus, they are great for more than warming up after an ice-cold dip. Walk your dog, keep warm while watching sports, or simply whip it on when the temperatures dip to freezing.

It’s time to embrace the chilly waters with the knowledge that this range of waterproof changing robes will be there to keep you cosy and discreet as you transition from water to land and beyond.

What are the benefits of cold-water swimming

The benefits go beyond the feeling of smugness that you get posting a picture of your cold water dip pre-work. 

If swimming outdoors isn’t your bag, you can read all about the best cold water swimming pods for your home here. 

Read all about the benefits of cold water dipping here. 

What is a swim parka?

Three men wearing swim parkas

Dry Robe has almost become synonymous with swim parkas – much like Hoover or Jacuzzi – but despite being great, they aren’t the only change robes available. 

During the summer months, they might not be essential, but as the temperature drops, you’ll need something to help you dry off and keep you cosy post-swim.

What should I look for in a changing dry robe?

When it comes to choosing a changing robe, there are several factors to consider based on personal preferences and intended use. Here are some key things to keep in mind:

Sleeve Length

Short-sleeve or ¾ sleeve robes allow for greater arm movement, which can be helpful when removing a wetsuit or for milder weather.

However, if you require maximum warmth and coverage during colder, wetter days, longer sleeves offer better protection.

Poncho or traditional style

If handling zippers with cold, numb fingers is a concern, an over-the-head poncho-style robe may be more convenient. However, traditional zip-up robes are generally easier to put on and take off.


Changing robes are intentionally oversized to allow for changing underneath. If warmth is your primary concern, some brands recommend sizing down.

However, be sure to check the size guides, as they are often based on height rather than dress size.

Weather-proof details

For maximum protection against wind and rain, opt for full-length robes with features such as waterproof outer shells, taped seams to keep water out of the stitching, moisture-wicking linings, storm flaps, adjustable hoods and cuffs, and two-way reversible zips that allow you to unzip from both the bottom and the inside.

Fleece-lined outer pockets can also provide warmth for your hands.


Many brands now incorporate recycled or sustainable materials into their changing robes. Some brands even pledge to move towards greater sustainability in their production processes.

How we tested

Our team here at Muscle and Health tried out the robes in the midst of an arctic-like cold snap at the end of November and the start of December. Temperatures plummeted to almost freezing, while we were also treated to a generous downpour of festive snowfall.

From dog walks to cold water dips, the robes were tested across several different activities in the cold weather, all of which provided the team with a fair and accurate base to judge their experiences using the product.

The best swim parkas for cold water swimming

Wild Moose Robes


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The Wild Moose Change Robe

Key Features:

  • Fully waterproof recycled nylon outer lining
  • Sherpa fleece made from 100% recycled polyester
  • Fleece lined hood
  • Adjustable cuffs

Colour options: Vivid pink/dark grey, Vibrant orange/pale grey, Teal/pale grey, Electric blue/black

Size options: S, M, L, Curvy Moose, Curvier Moose

Waterproof, windproof and a personal changing pod to hide from nosy onlookers…

What more could you want?

The Wild Moose Eco, Long-Sleeved changing robe has been tried, tested (and approved) in the chilly waters of a Scottish Loch. And we can confirm it not only looks great but keeps you cosy pre and post-dip. 

The change robe is fully waterproof and made from recycled nylon, with a super thick Sherpa fleece lining – so whether you’re getting changed after a swim or just hanging out in the cold, you’ll be protected from the elements. 

Plus, their oversized changing robes are designed to be on the big side, giving you loads of room to cosy up and stay warm or change if you need to – they even have curvy-sized options to fit everyone.

But our personal favourite feature is the abundance of pockets (2 external and 2 internal) – perfect for stuffing cold hands or storing things you need quick access to in the cold (woolly socks, anyone).

If you’re not yet ready to commit to the fleece-lined swim parka, then their poncho towels are a great option for the warmer months – or for drying off before you bundle up in the changing robe.  

The Ootsider

The Normal Robe

Key Features:

  • Tough and robust outer shell fabric
  • Taped and sealed seams
  • Windproof and waterproof
  • Eco-friendly inner fleece lining

Colour options: Bottle Green, Flow Orange, Green Camo, Grey Camo, Navy Blue, Royal Blue

Size options: XS, S, M, L, XL

We are not sure what’s more impressive here. The robe, or the ethical message and purpose rooted at the core of The Ootsider, a community interest company non-profit organisation, on a mission to make a positive social impact to those sleeping rough on the streets.

The eco-friendly changing robe itself is beautifully crafted. It emits warmth and a high level of craftsmanship from the outset, from its adjustable hood to superb weather protection. Still, the headline feature is the robe’s ability to be converted into a Sleeping Bag. 

All purchases from The Ootsider have a greater purpose, a potentially life-changing acquisition which could greatly improve the life of a rough sleeper.

All net profits from sales are reinvested into making more Sleeping Coats before they are then donated to folks sleeping on the streets. If that’s not enough to make you buy one, we don’t know what is.

Two Bare Feet

Weatherproof Changing Robe

Key Features:

  • 100% 8k water resistant outer
  • High-spec water-repellent finishing
  • Ultra-soft-touch Sherpa Fleece lining
  • Zipped internal chest pocket

Colour options: Teal, Black, Blue, Green, Navy, White

Size options: S, M, L, XL

Two Bare Feet’s robe proved a game-changer for our Head of Social and cold swim water enthusiast, Ali, who felt the quality of the robe’s construction after a dip in her native Scottish waters. As one of the brave souls who look forward to the thrill of open water swimming, Ali couldn’t be happier to help out!

The outer layer, crafted from a durable and water-resistant material, efficiently shielded her from the wickedly chilly sea breeze, while she was full of praise for the full-length double front zipper and spacious hood, which allowed for a quick and easy change while providing complete coverage.

Design-wise, she went for the Blue/Charcoal robe and absolutely loved the all-over print graffiti style, something which sets Two Bare Feet Weatherproof Changing Robe apart.

Dry Bones


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Long Sleeve Waterproof Coat

Key Features:

  • Waterproof nylon outer
  • Recycled synthetic Sherpa Lambswool inner lining
  • Non-slip zippers
  • Lots of colours and eye-catching design

Colour options: Black, Grey, Sandstorm, Green, Turquoise, Purple, Pink, Orange, Red

Size options: XS, S, M, L, XL

Do you want to look stylish while reaping the benefits of a dry-changing robe? How about oozing flair on a mundane dog walk?

Well, Dry Bones’ Long Sleeve Waterproof Coat ticks both of those boxes and with a permanent marker, may we add.

This waterproof changing robe boasts a funky logo and excellent branding, and the coat is striking from the outset (we opted for the Sandstorm colour), and the fit is exactly as described in the size guide. With plenty of length and wiggle room, the robe is ideal for getting changed in after a dip, or alternatively, it works as a comprehensive defensive shield from the elements.

There’s an abundance of pockets for storage, too, so you’ll never have to worry about a place to keep the hundreds of gadgets required to sustain our modern-day existence. And there are some deep pockets, plus you can plug all the heat in courtesy of snappy velcro cuffs on the arms.

Expect compliments galore and plenty of curious people asking where they can get their own!

We opted for the long-sleeved version, but there is also a short-sleeved option for those a little bit braver.

Cornwall Swimming Co.

Changing Robe

Key Features:

  • Recycled synthetic lambswool lined hood, body and arms
  • Full length two-way, fully reversible zipper
  • Internal water-proof zippered phone pocket
  • Internal water bottle pocket 

The perfect robe for outdoor adventures, Cornwall Swim Co.’s offering was born from the global pandemic in 2020, and designed as a tool to accompany the relaxing benefits of swimming.

Whilst you could don this robe away from your nearest coast line, we fully recommend using this one out on the open water, just as we did after a quick dip in ice-cold temperatures. 

Considering the company is based in Cornwall – a region of the UK known for its unpredictable and, at times, adverse weather conditions – the robe has been brilliantly designed to tackle the elements.

It’s lightweight, super cosy and has plenty of pockets for storage. We tried the Icelandic Blue variation, but there are also some lovely Army Green and Cornish Grey colour options we also had our eyes on.

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