Wet shoes are described as a neoprene bootie with a thin sole with some traction at the bottom and fit tightly around the foot. Most wet shoes have thin soles and are meant to be used only on the water because you cannot use the thin soles in rocky terrain since the rocks usually poke the foot's bottom and cause pain. The neoprene in the wet shoe works by trapping a thin water layer between the neoprene insulation and the foot and becomes a wet suit for your feet.
Your body heat from the feet heats up, warms up the trapped water, and keeps your feet warm. Some people buy their wet shoes, but others rent from rafting companies who have them in various sizes to enjoy different activities like strolling the beach, kayaking, hiking, or diving. This article lists some of the best-wet shoes from different brands in the market today with their pros, cons and a detailed buying guide to help you make an informed decision.
1. Vessi Everyday
Vessi is among the best brands in the market that provide both men's and women's waterproof footwear, and they had to make it to the top of this list because they are more than just your everyday pair and can perfectly be adventure shoes. The Everyday water shoes have a knit material called the Dyma-tex; they offer plenty of breathabilities that allow your feet to remain dry by allowing any moisture or heat to escape. Vessi qualifies as both water shoes and a sneaker because of the exceptional waterproofing technology and the fact that it is very lightweight.
The Everyday Sneakers emphasize extra support with sportier soles that keep your feet comfortable even after wearing the pair for long hours. Vessi everyday pair has non-slip bottoms with zones that push out water through the channels to deliver better traction and ensure you're safe and comfortable. Additionally, the brand also has a stretchy knit layer that blocks dirt and moisture from getting in the shoe and features removable insoles convenient for outdoor activities.
- 100% waterproof and water-resistant
- Lightweight pair
- Uses a patented waterproof technology
- Removable insoles are perfect when you need to use orthotic insoles.
- The bottoms are anti-slip
- Machine washable
- The water shoes are not that warm
2. Wave Runner Quick Drying Water Shoes
Wave Runner is the best water shoe brand if you are looking for quick-drying shoes for activities such as kayaking, snorkeling, and even hassle-free driving. The water shoes are built from breathable, stretchy, and slip-free materials reducing the possibility of a user experiencing any trouble during their sports activities and give them a confidence boost.
Wave Runner has a thick and anti-skid outsole that guarantees durability with the drainage holes keeping your feet as dry and warm as possible. This sole also assures a customer won't experience any skidding or losing grip on slippery surfaces, or even getting blisters because of how well the shoes have been constructed.
- Thick and flexible rubber outsole
- Lightweight water shoes
- Available in bright colors
- The items use multiple drainage holes
- The brand uses a quick-drying mesh
- The water shoes use lace closures
- Their size runs big, and you might have to order one size smaller.
3. Merrell All Out Blaze Sieve Water Shoe
This water shoe has a sandal-like design perfect for hiking through a river or a stream with sturdy construction and a quick-drying neoprene lining. Merrel All Out Blaze Sieve Water Shoe has a cushioned midsole that provides both added support and shock absorption and drys quickly, making it suitable for a wet or dry environment. Merrel uses treads with a hardy Vibram sole, a mesh, a TPU leather upper, and neoprene stretch collars for an easy-on and off that guarantees these sneakers are perfect to use in all terrains.
Merrell water shoes use patented M Select FRESH antimicrobial agents inside that help protect your feet against unwanted foot odors no matter how frequent you wear them. With a UniFly midsole, it offers plenty of traction to keep you on the trail with a high-performance climbing rubber that offers excellent grip on wet or smooth surfaces without weighing you down.
- It is made using a special Vibram rubber that provides grip
- It is a versatile product
- The water shoes have a neoprene lining that repels water and quickly dries
- Breathable material
- Comfortable to use all day without having to change
- Sleek and stylish design
- The holes in the outsole could cause issues on trails
- These water shoe does not use a seamless liner
- Might need to wear it a day or two before the actual use day to add some traction
Barerun Barefoot water shoes are flexible and lightweight, giving a feeling like socks with a thick sole that protects your feet from sharp objects. The soles are very flexible and bend with your foot while offering protection, and the items are nonslip for better traction on wet and slippery surfaces. The water shoes are made from a lightweight material that provides plenty of breathability and flexibility for your feet, allowing you to enjoy new water activities with your feet remaining dry fully.
These water shoes are suitable for long days at the beach, on water, and around the pool and work great for land-based adventures as you can carry them around. The product comes in various designs and colors, and you can use them for a lot of different activities and fold them up and put them away when you are done using them.
- Comfortable with a nice stretch and a snug fit
- Well protected feet all-day
- Exceptional traction for various water activities
- It comes in a stylish design
- The construction is durable and tough
- Suitable for people who need feet protection but don't like the idea of wearing shoes in water
- The size might be big
- The water shoes have an unsecured insole
5. Aleader Mesh Slip On Water Shoes
Aleader Mesh Slip-On shoes are the best shoes for any customer looking for an ideal water shoe for hiking along the river or partaking in activities that involve water splashes. The product is available for both men and women, and it has been designed with a solyte midsole that guarantees its lightweight feel and offers excellent durability and bounce-back. The water shoes also have an open-air mesh on their upper and holes in the soles to guarantee quick drying after every soak in water.
Aleader brand might qualify as one of the best summer options because of the excellent breathability making it suitable for hot and humid temperatures. Additionally, it has exceptional traction because of the water grain and cushioned outsole, which protects your feet in wet and slippery terrains.
- High durability and breathability of the air mesh
- Rubber pods that add extra traction
- It has an open mesh on the upper
- Easily washable
- Perfectly grips your feet
- Offers great protection and a firm sole grip
- The inner sole does not slip and has a water grain outsole
- Reasonable price
- Available in various colors
- It is not ideal for long walks
- The hole on the sole/treads might store tiny sticks and rocks.
What to Consider when Shopping for the Best Wet Shoes
1. Size and Fit
No matter the shoe type, all shoes should be well-fitting to avoid any cause of pain or any avoidable accidents. Fitting shoes mean that they won't slip or slide off your feet while minimizing any rubbing and chaffing. The best-wet shoes should be easy to slip on and off without compromising how to snuggle because loose shoes will wiggle a lot when you move around.
Find yourself the best-wet shoes that have a great fit to ensure your feet are dry for long periods and safe from any foreign objects that may cause injuries.
Both the material used to make wet shoes and the construction determine how durable the shoe will be. For the utmost comfort, ensure your water shoes are made with skin-friendly materials such as textile, rubber, and the different leather and mesh forms. Before you settle on a choice, check if the upper part of the shoes has a breathable mesh or a leather material that allows breathability and does not fit too tight on your feet.
For materials like textile, opt for footwear that is lightweight, durable, and waterproof, which will last you no matter how many times you contact water. Choosing the best breathable material for your water shoes will guarantee that your shoes don't absorb water for too long to avoid creating an environment for bacteria, fungus, or yeast to thrive or feet to smell. Also, check how the material holds water to avoid your shoes becoming extra heavy for you to walk in.
Traction enables shoes to work together with slippery surfaces well and for the customer to maintain balance without slipping off. Traction should be among the first things you consider before making a final choice on your footwear because traction will help a customer walk on water or river banks, swim in the ocean, or play around beach rocks. Try to go for a pair with rubber pods built into the shoe soles to guarantee a good grip and peace of mind.
4. Protect your Feet
These water shoes are the best because they provide a customer with utmost protection with the right type of material. A popular material that is usually preferred with many sports enthusiasts for the water shoe is the mesh and simply because it drains any water from the shoe. The mesh material comes in handy when you are avoiding hiking with water shoes or reducing the discomfort of wearing a wet pair of shoes. However, the mesh may not be the ideal choice for rough terrains as you may need extra durability.
5. Waterproof or Water-resistant Water Shoes
Waterproof shoes are waterproof fabrics that have been treated using different methods to make them resistant to water penetration, meaning even though your shoes get wet, your feet would remain dry and not get wet. You can also waterproof your shoes using either item such as PVC, silicone, rubber, and wax, or you can use an easy way of using a waterproof spray to protect your shoes from getting water.
On the other hand, there is water resistance which is often confused with waterproofing. Water-resistance shoes offer protection also but do not block the water penetration in your shoes, unlike waterproof shoes. The other difference is they are made from different materials, but it doesn't make water-resistant materials less efficient; they can hold water for a limited period.
Before making your final purchase decision, keep in mind the activity type you plan to indulge in to know what kind of support you may need. If you will use the product on your feet for a prolonged period, it is advisable to choose a pair that offers good ankle support. Still, if you are not on your feet for extended periods for activities like boating, kayaking, or fishing, and simple wear and remove slip-on footwear will work.
In general, water shoes or any shoes usually need to be flexible in their sole construction to allow the foot to bend and flex naturally when walking. Lack of flexibility results in the reduced natural movement and therefore causes stress in arches. You can add thicker soles to add some padding for your heels, toes, and soles but ensure it doesn't limit your flexibility. Before purchasing, try to put the wet shoes on your feet to check how right they feel.
8. Easy to Wear and Remove
Untieing a shoelace after the shoes have been in water can be difficult, so your water shoe choice needs to have a stretchable upper mesh to remove your shoes quickly. The upper mesh makes sure that even when your shoe has been in the water, it will quickly get off your feet. Additionally, the upper mesh comes in handy because it allows water to drain off easily and to ensure you as a customer stay warm.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why is it bad to wear wet shoes?
Yes, it is! This is because when water seeps through your shoes, it is absorbed by the skin, causing them to be wrinkled and waterlogged. The longer your feet stay wet, the greater the damage to your skin on the feet, including blisters formation, cracks, or tears.
2. What is the difference between water shoes and aqua socks?
Aqua socks are worn in shoes that get soaked or wet, while water shoes are footwear worn either barefoot or with socks or barefoot in wet conditions such as kayaking, river hiking, beach, and rafting.
3. Can you wear neoprene socks with water shoes?
Depending on the current weather and how much a person intends to get wet, wool or neoprene socks can be worn with water shoes. Wearing these socks does not leave a lot of space for your feet, but it reduces the number of blisters you may have and can be used to walk in the water or for portaging.