Stohlquist Women’s Flo life jacket for summer fun

Stohlquist is a name we can all trust when it comes to picking a personal floatation device (PFD) or life jacket, and I appreciate that this lightweight nylon one is sleek, with a thinner profile than most. In other words, maybe there’s a chance I won’t end up feeling like a marshmallow waddling around the lakeshore with my PFD in place. Maybe.

The Women’s Flo is just over a pound, and the 400×200 denier ripstop outer shell and softer inner liner is almost comfortable. At any rate, I often forget I’m wearing it. You get high back flotation that fits comfortably above the seat backs found in today’s sit-on-top kayaks. The mesh backing and open sides keeps you cool in humid or hot summer weather, with ventilation galore. Even better: no ride-up with the cross-chest cinch harness. The thinner shoulder straps keep you from feeling like a turtle in a shell, too. I appreciated the large bellow pockets with drainage; perfect for stashing my chapstick, sunglasses, or non-electronic key.

There’s a neoprene padded waistband and the torso of the PFD is 18″ wide and 4″ high. This really does make for a slim profile that you won’t mind wearing on the lake, ocean or river. I have tried out the Flo Life while both paddleboarding and kayaking, and I enjoyed full arm movement with each activity.

The Stohlquist Women’s Flo comes in an earthy orange color (which I think is quite unique in the life jacket category) or gray and purple, and I found it for $92 on Amazon. Sizing is important when it comes to life jackets, and the Stohlquist site recommends the following:

XS/SM    28” – 34”
MD/LG    34” – 40”
PLUS      40” – 46”

I am 5’4″ with wide shoulders but not that well-endowed, and the MD fit me best. The jacket is adjustable on both sides.

Posted in


Amy Whitley is a freelance creative and travel writer and founding editor of the family travel website Pit Stops for Kids. An avid lover of the outdoors, Amy makes her home in Southern Oregon, where she, her husband, and three school-aged children spend much of their time backpacking, camping, skiing, and hiking. When not exploring her own backyard, Amy and her family hit the road for travel reviews of resorts, tour operations, and hotels across the country and abroad. Follow Amy Whitley on Twitter and Facebook.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.