We love Aqua Quest products. A few years ago, Yeison and I had a horrible experience with a supposedly waterproof backpack and we lost a brand new camera. After that, we did extensive research to find true waterproof products because rainy season in Costa Rica is no joke.We get tropical storms, mini hurricanes and even floods! With all the equipment we have for the blog, we needed something truly water proof and durable.
Luckily we found Aqua Quest. We ordered their Tote backpack and instantly fell in love. We threw that bag into the ocean, the pool and took it on hikes in a thunderstorm. Not even one drop got inside and we knew we found something we could trust to protect our cameras and other electronics. Aqua Quest sent us some other items to review such as the laptop case and biker backpack in 2013 and recently they sent us a few more items to check out since they added a lot more to their inventory.
In this article, I’m going to review the Aqua Quest Stylin Pro and Stylin 30L Backpacks. In case you haven’t noticed, we are a bit backpack obsessed and love trying out different ones to fit our needs!
Aqua Quest Stylin Pro 30L and Stylin Backpack Review
Stylin Pro vs Stylin
Aqua Quest Stylin Pro 30L
First, let’s go over the Stylin Pro. It’s 30L, 2.1 lbs, waterproof and made with ripstop fabric for durability. When completely filled, it has a bit of a rectangle shape and has the classic roll top. It has a water resistant front sleeve pocket and a front zip pocket. There is also a small zip pocket inside the bag and has an internal liner.
It has water resistant hip strap pockets that can fit a phone, snacks, chapstick and other small items. It has a high density back panel for extra support and comfort and you can adjust the shoulder, chest and hip straps.
Aqua Quest Stylin 30L
The Stylin is also 30L, a little lighter at 1.9 lbs, waterproof and made with ripstop fabric. When completely filled, it has a rounder shape that narrows out at the bottom. It has a splash resistant front zip pocket and a front sleeve pocket.
You can adjust the shoulder, chest and hip straps and the back has a mesh air panel. You have the option to get one with reflexive lining on the outside. It doesn’t have any inside pockets or hip strap pockets.
Our Experience with the Backpacks
We took these backpacks for two ultimate waterproof tests: a hike in the pouring rain and a swim in the lake I live on in Washington state.
For the hike, Yeison wore the Stylin Pro and I wore the Stylin. We both had our Canon cameras inside the main pocket along with our phones, towels and extra change of clothes. In the outside front sleeve pocket, we put our water bottles and some snacks inside.
These backpacks were amazing! After a 4 hour hike in constant rain with barely any cover, not a single drop got in the main compartment. We didn’t put anything in the front zip pocket but our items in the sleeve pocket were also perfectly dry. We made sure to roll and buckle everything nice and tight.
Ok so we knew that the backpacks are really waterproof but we also wanted to test out the front pockets. Remember, the Stylin Pro front and hip pockets are water resistant whereas the Stylin pockets are splash resistant.
Did it really make a difference?
For this test, we took our backpacks to the lake and Yeison made a video dunking them in the water. Watch to see what the results are!
Basically, after getting dunked fully underwater a few times, the Stylin Pro got a little wet inside the front zip pocket and sleeve, the inside main compartment was 100% dry.
The Stylin backpack front pocket got completely wet. The sleeve pocket only got a little bit wet. The inside compartment was completely dry.
Which One Should You Get?
It depends. Both backpacks are completely waterproof when it comes to the main compartments. However, as the video showed the front pockets are different. The Stylin 30 is water resistant whereas the Stylin is splash resistant.
If you want just a waterproof backpack and prefer something simple, the Stylin will be fine. Just make sure not to put any electronics in the front outside pocket if you’re going out in heavy rain or where you’ll be surrounded by water. For light rain, it’s fine.
If you prefer a backpack with a few extras like the air mesh back panel, the hip pockets and extra inside pocket, then go with the Stylin Pro. The water resistant front pocket gives you more security.
The Pro is definitely better for hikers who need more pockets and it’s more comfortable to carry for long distances. The Stylin is great for boating/kayaking/going to the beach since it has one big pocket to fit everything and you won’t be carrying it for a long time.
I hope this article helped you choose which Aqua Quest Stylin 30L backpack to get. The price difference is $40 so it is something to think about when choosing between the two backpacks.
Huge thanks to Aqua Quest for the backpacks to review!
This post has affiliate links.