The protective clothing I use is long sleeved white overalls, a bee hat with broad brim and a square folding black wire net veil (right photo). The veil fits over the hat and extends away from the skin of the face. This provides modest protection and air ventilation around the neck and head. High laced steel capped boots prevent the bees from stinging my ankles (quite painful) and protect my feet from accidents. I wear gloves for hand and wrist protection when the bees are aggressive.
Steer clear of aftershave, perfume, hair spray, wool, dark coloured clothing, watches. These agitate the bees causing unnecessary bee stings.
Protective clothing builds confidence when handling bees and is an important first step as a successful beekeeper. Avoid unnecessary worry and distraction from flying and crawling bees by wearing appropriate clothing. A few ideas:
- Bee suit or outer garment (Select a slightly baggy fit, light coloured - white is best):
- Full or half length suit - zipped with a built in veil & elastic cuffs - best for beginner
- Three piece - full length overall, hat & veil - for the more experienced.
- A pair of gloves:
- Soft leather type beekeeping gloves or
- Industrial safety type
- High laced workers steel capped boots or
- Higher than ankle runners/trainers/walking boots