I’m looking for a comfortable pfd for a small adult paddler. Tried the Cruiser pfd from L.L.Bean—it’s really uncomfy. The foam is broken into segments on the back. Hoping not to spend a fortune. Planning to never let the shore out of my close sight but still want to be safe. Is a ski vest out of the question? Thanks!
NRS has a good selection of PFDs, and they’ll be a lot more comfortable than a ski vest, I bet. Check their “great deals” section (type NRS into google; you might
The Astral Women’s and the Lotus Rio are both pretty well sized for women; NRS has them for $69, down from $138/$129. The Extrasport volksvest is a simple $49 vest that works fine, but it’s bulky. The extrasport chica is a low-profile vest at $69. (both of those are the regular prices at NRS, not the sale prices). The NRS vista is also reasonably priced, at $55, and my experience with all their stuff has been very good. Their quality is great. http://www.nrsweb.com
If you can try different pfds on somewhere, it’s a good idea. Each body fits differently, and the PFD I like, my similarly sized friend hates.
Good luck–the best pfd is one that’s so comfortable you always wear it.
MSFit Tour. Best of all the pfd’s I’ve owned. Very comfortable without riding up. There are some reviews here on PNet. BTW, I’m 5’4", 125 lbs.
PFDs has the best adjustability that I have come across. I am not a female (at least on this board) but am small and have found my Astral the go-to-vest of the 4 different brands I have.
The higher end PFD usually has more adjustability and features and thus the higher cost. Could be worth it in the long run because of the comfort factor. I wear mine always on the water, year round.