England began their bid for a sixth successive Six Nations title and another Grand Slam with victory in the wind and rain at Cross Keys RFC.
The hosts found themselves on the back foot in the first half as England wing Fran Matthews went in in the corner.
Wales conceded a penalty try in injury time, new England captain Katy McLean converting for a 12-0 interval lead.
England centre Kim Oliver put full-back Danielle Waterman over early on the resumption to effectively seal victory.
Wales rallied in the final half-hour and came close to breaching the England line but the visitors' defence stood firm in the horrendous conditions.
"For most of the game we dominated and we have got to be pleased with that," said England head coach England head coach Gary Street.
"The conditions were very difficult and that played its part. We haven't played since September so I expected a bit of rustiness but we scored some nice tries and our defence was solid as ever. Our next Test is against Italy on Saturday and not only will we be looking for a win, but we will be looking for an improved performance."
While England turn their attention to the visit of the Italians to Esher RFC next Saturday, Wales travel to face Scotland Women next weekend.
Wales Women: Aimee Young (Bath Ladies); Caryl James (Cardiff Quins), Adi Taviner, (Neath Athletic), Elen Evans (Dolgellau), Charlie Murray (Neath Athletic); Elinor Snowsill (Cardiff Quins), Amy Day (Cross Keys); Caryl Thomas (Bath Ladies), Rhian Bowden (Cross Keys), Catrin Edwards (Cardiff Quins), Ashley Rowlands (Wasps), Shona Powell Hughes (Neath Athletic), Lisa Newton (UWIC), Sioned Harries (UWIC), Jamie Kift (Cross Keys). Replacements: Lowri Harries (Neath Athletic), Jenny Davies (Waterloo), Vicky Owens (UWIC), Sian Williams (Bath Ladies), Laura Prosser (Cardiff Quins), Awen Thomas (Cross Keys), Kerin Lake (Neath Athletic).
England Women: Danielle Waterman (Worcester), Katherine Merchant, (Worcester), Emily Scarratt (Lichfield), Kimberley Oliver (Bristol), Fran Matthews (Richmond); Katy McLean (Darlington Mowden Park Sharks - capt), La Toya Mason (Wasps); Rochelle Clark (Worcester), Amy Garnett (Saracens), Sophie Hemming (Bristol), Joanna McGilchrist (Wasps), Rebecca Essex (Richmond), Sarah Hunter (Lichfield), Margaret Alphonsi (Saracens), Catherine Spencer (Bristol). Replacements: Emma Croker (Richmond), Claire Purdy (Wasps), Rowena Burnfield (Richmond), Heather Fisher (Worcester), Georgina Rozario (Lichfield), Rachael Burford (Richmond), Georgina Roberts (Darlington Mowden Park Sharks).
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