MTI's PFDiva Women's type III kayak lifejacket has been one of the best reviewed women's lifejackets available anywhere, ever. Before you plonk down for that Lotus or Astral vest, take a close look at the Diva and read the independent opinions on the web.
The PFDiva uses insertable memory foam pads for what MTI calls "Adjust-a-bust", which ensures that all but the most Dolly-Parton-ish paddlers will be able to get a perfect fit with minimal fussing. The Diva is a center zippered model (not a tough to deal with pull-over) with Z-adjust side straps (one strap takes the place of two), a knife lash for whitewater paddlers, a sports bra "racer" back panel, adjustable shoulders, one large & one flat pocket, and a beefy 500 denier cordura shell that will ensure a long lifespan. The foam is MTI's softest grade, and as long as you cinch the bottom strap firmly the Diva will never ride up on your torso even in violent swims. This is probably one of the most thoroughly tested vests MTI has ever produced. These run $119, a bit lower than much of the competition, and the competitors really don't have an equal anyway. These come in slightly different sizes from most of the other MTI type III's on this page: The small/medium runs 29" to 40" chest size, but the L/XL only goes from 40" to 48", not 50" or 52" like some others. There is no XX size. We stock the Mango color shown in the large/XL (this size fits ladies with chest sizes between 41" and 51"), and an "ice" color in the small/medium size (29" to 40" chest sizes). Ice is a bright gray with a hint of lavender mixed in. Both colors have black trim.
One detail to note is that on this vest, as well as the Play and Riptide from MTI, we have had a few buyers who seem to have trouble getting the zipper started. Every time a customer is here at our location, what we notice if they are having trouble is that the insertion pin, or "prong", is not pushed all the way into the zipper slider, or "car". The prong/insertion pin is the part at the bottom of the zipper teeth, on the left side of the zipper, as you are wearing the lifevest. First snap the fastex buckle underneath the bottom of the zipper so you are not struggling to hold the zipper together. Then make sure you insert the prong ALL THE WAY into the zipper car. Sometimes, wiggling the zipper car's pull-tab a little bit as you pull upwards helps. Keep in mind there are thousands of paddlers wearing these lifevests with no problem, so the issue is not usually with the product. MTI did choose to go with a very large tooth size on the zippers of these three vests, for strength, and larger-toothed zippers are almost always a bit more sticky to get started.
Also check out the MTI Nami, our other lady's jacket. Note too that many women find the Riptide type III to work well.