My personal experience:
I bought the full beesuit from Mann Lake - cost about $90. I'm not the most couragous person, so I was nervous with less. I actually did start out with just the veil and hard hat, with some garden gloves (also wore a white sweatshirt and jeans). But I just didn't feel protected with my first set up. I didn't like the bees going up my pants, or sneaking in cracks around my gloves or where ever. Also, the veil and hard hat was a pain. Every time I leaned over, the stupid thing would nearly fall off my head. So just leaning slightly over to the hive caused me to be blinded by my hat, and completely uncovered my neck.
So.... I went for the full suit. I like it alot better, but it is
hot. I hear that the cotton suits aren't as hot as the poly blend I got. But atleast the hat stays still now and doesn't flop forward. For me, buying the $90 suit was quite an investment.
Maybe one day I'll sell it, and buy me a cotton suit. This suit is actually way too big for me now. It's a 2X, but I bought it when I was FAT - now I've lost 80 pounds and I swim in it.
Then.... I might buy these things:Beekeeping Jackets
Price - $40 ($34 + $6 shipping)
and this -Mann Lake catalog - page 64
Price - $17 plus shipping
Come to think of it - now that I'm writting this out, if there is someone out there that is interested in buying my suit - I'll sell. Includes hat, zipper veil, and gloves.
$50 - plus shipping cost
Bought 2 years ago
Looks like this:
(For the mods - I'll post this in the trading post too for people to see.)