Up until recently, I had been freezing my balls off wearing a West Lotus Air-o 5/4/3 winter wetsuit, with a hooded thermal rashy, 7mm boots and 3mm gloves. And this is in the SW + South Wales. Admittedly the wetsuit is coming up to 2 seasons old, but even still, it appears in tact.
Fed up of feeling so bloody cold, I invested in a Hooded Xcel Drylock Powerseam 5/4/3, which I found in the sales for £300. Still a lot of money but figured it would be worth it.
Only used it the once, so can't comment on durability yet, but blimey it's good. Disturbingly warm. Paddled out yesterday and there were times I thought I was going to overheat (and I feel the cold a lot). Far far warmer than any wetsuit I've ever owned. The hood itself is 3mm I think and has an airprene lining, ensuring it's super warm. The fit is...snug to put it mildly, which probably in some way goes to ensure it's great warmth, but the flexibility is superb. Again, definitely the most flexible winter wetsuit I've worn. This will in part be down to the powerseams, although it is hard to tell how much. They certainly allow greater flexibility when stretching the wetsuit by hand, that is for sure.
No flushing whatsoever and water genuinely seems to wick away from the outside of the suit. Again, whether this characteristic will fade with time is uncertain.
So durability remains the only question mark. On first impressions the suit appears well made and fairly heavy duty, so time will tell.
Thoroughly recommended if you want some snug fitting warmth though.