The beekeepers I hung around with in the 1970's didn't bother with suits or veils. They just smoked the bees and showed RESPECT for their bees. This means not banging the frames around, slower body movements, etc. They let me work the bees and I found I didn't need a suit either. Also, when I worked in a honey room, doing the extracting, I got a lot more stings on my arms as I handled frames that had already had most of the bees brushed off. Perhaps bees now have more of the African bee DNA in their makeup, making them more aggressive, but I doubt it.