My experience as a wetsuit wearing surfer, working retail in the surf industry, and now owning my own shop has given me a lot of time to think about wetsuits and what makes them great, or not so great. The not so great ones fall apart quickly, which makes for colder sessions and wasted money.
Fit, stretch, warmth, durability are all things you should (and can!) find in a new wetsuit.
The Nineplus 3/2 Catsuit is my new favorite. Oh the buttery softness, the stretch, warmth, and fit are amazing, especially for a $350 price point! They make similarly amazing suits for guys too. This suit is perfect for Pacifica summer water temps or winter in southern California (water temps around 53-66). If you run hot, this wetsuit may just be what you wear year round.
If you run cold, like I do, you'll want a winter wetsuit and booties. A 4/3 may be good for many, but I prefer this all 4mm cozy suit by Kassia Surf. I like to have a cap on hand at all times too in case the wind is strong or if the waves are bigger and I know I'll be getting submerged a lot.
The gear mentioned here is also made from either limestone rubber or Yulex rubber, which are not petroleum based. They're thoughtfully designed, high quality, and a bit more unique than the big brands you find elsewhere.
Whatever you choose, hopefully owning your own wetsuit will make surfing more accessible for you!