Footwear

The 8 Best Water Shoes For Men 2017

Need a new pair of slip on water shoes?

Or are you the hardcore type that needs them to be extremely tight for those mucky waters that you’re fishing in?

Either case – we’re positive that we’ve found a pair for you below.

Before you skim through these make sure to check out our buyer’s guide below on what you should be considering and determining what types of water shoes there are.

Our top 3..

Crocs Swiftwater

Body Glove 3T

Zhuanglin Aqua Shoes

Speedo Surfwalker

Speedo Surfknit

Merrell All Out Blaze

Vibram Signa

Columbia Drainmaker III

 

“Wait…Crocs was your top pick for best water shoes?!”

Don’t hate on Crocs!  The Crocs brand has come a VERY LONG way since their first piece of footwear that seemed to bring the lazy “I don’t want to tie my shoes” out in all of us.

Since then Crocs has branched out in a big way wihin..

  • Sandals
  • Water Shoes
  • Slip Ons
  • Sneakers
  • Boots
  • And more..

These are the 8 best water shoes for men in 2017 and the Crocs Swiftwater Sandal EASILY topped the entire list.

Why?

  • The fit is exceptional
  • The material used in the water shoe allows it to breathe and dry quickly
  • The shoe drains quickly from the sole
  • The sole support and comfort is top notch

Read the details on it below.

The 8 Best Water Shoes For Men 2017

Crocs Men’s Swiftwater Sandal 

(Top Pick)

crocs swiftwater sandal

Last update was on: October 23, 2017, 4:42 am
  • Overall Fit & Style

The Crocs Swiftwater sandal is an all-weather glove for your foot.

They fit like a glove (assuming you pick the correct size).

If you get these make sure you get 1 size down from what you normally get.

Example:  If you normally wear size 10 get a size 9.

Although they are technically called a ‘sandal’ we deemed them to be a perfect cross of sandal and water shoe.

Once you try these on you’ll understand why they are the top pick.

The water friendly mesh material isn’t extremely thick so it won’t make your feet hot, and it breathes so well – allowing that wind to keep your feet cool.

Plus – the sole of the water shoe is kept open on 3 places on each side, and also the heel is exposed.

If you’ve ever experienced ‘rubbing’ from other water shoes out there the Crocs Swiftwater Sandal will not rub on your heel.

The back strap actually goes over your Achilles tendon, and is snug enough to keep your foot ‘forward’ in the water shoe and in place with every step.

And if you’re ever unsure you can always cinch down the leather strap on top of your foot just in front of your ankle to make sure your foot never slips out.

  • Water & Substance Drainage

One of the great things about the Crocs Swiftwater Sandal is that they don’t absorb water at all.

The water friendly mesh on the top of your foot will (to an extent), but the sole won’t and will keep your water shoes from smelling, and will also keep your shoes lightweight.

There is no ‘drainage period’ with the Swiftwater because of the side holes we mentioned above.

Once you take your foot out of the water it’s drained, and the only part that retained water is the mesh top.

  • Overall Traction

Surprisingly,

Wet surfaces combined with rubbery soles are NOT slippery (if they’re made right).

We cover this in our post about Jandals.

The Crocs Swiftwater Sandal has little bumps on the sole where your foot touches to keep your foot in place and give you a little foot massage, and the bottom of the shoe’s tread can easily withstand hiking, fishing on the front of a bass boat and fighting a fish, walking on a slippery dock, etc.

We couldn’t keep the Croc Swiftwater out of the top spot for best water shoe, but the others below are just as good and could be better for you depending on the situation you need them for.

Body Glove 3T Barefoot MAX

(Next Best)

body glove 3t max water shoe

  • Overall Fit & Style

Just like Body Glove is known for the Body Glove 3T Barefoot Max IS a glove for your foot.

Because it’s SO tight they actually run tight on your feet.

We recommend ordering 1 size up with these water shoes unless you like them crazy tight with ZERO wiggle room.

The Body Glove 3T has a 3 toe opening at the end which may be uncomfortable for some, but was designed to give you a more snug fit than just 1 opening.

There’s an opening for your big toe, one for your 2nd toes, and the last opening is for your last 3 toes.

best water shoes

Because these water shoes are so tight they can be somewhat of a struggle to just ‘slip’ on your feet so if you want the ‘slip on’ and go water shoes these aren’t it.

If you need a pair that will not come off under any condition whatsoever these are the best water shoes for just that.  You couldn’t rip them off if you tried.

  • Water & Substance Drainage

The Body Glove 3T Barefoot Max has an IDS or Integrated Draining System built into the shoe.

As the water shoe is completely enclosed this helps drain water faster rather than keep it all in.

best water shoes for menAlthough they’re tight like we mentioned above they do a great job of keeping water/sand/pebbles OUT.  Allowing you to enjoy what you’re doing instead of constantly taking off your shoe to pour out all of the ‘gunk’.

  • Overall Traction

On the bottom of the Body Glove 3T is a threaded traction print that also features a few draining points for the water to escape.

best water shoes for men 2017The sole itself is thick enough to keep your feet from getting damaged, but also conforms to every step so that you’re not walking on boards.

If you don’t like having your toes in separate compartments in your shoe, and you want a lace up type feel then check out the Swoop below.  They have a lot of similar features as the Body Glove 3T, but they look more like a traditional athletic shoe.

Body Glove Men's Swoop Water Shoe, Black/Blue/White, 9 M US

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Last update was in: October 23, 2017 4:42 am

$33.99

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 Zhuanglin Aqua Shoes

(Best Water Shoes For The Money)

zhuanglin water shoe

Last update was on: October 23, 2017, 4:42 am
  • Overall Fit & Style

Order your normal shoe size if you go with these.

The Zhuanglin Aqua shoes sort of blew us away on how much quality they packed into a budget friendly water show.  They are the best water shoes for the money.

They fit snug around your ankles so that rocks and sand won’t easily get in the way of your fun.

Because these are the best water shoes in our list as far as money goes – it’s important to note that they don’t have an incredible amount of support.

They definitely do the job if you’re swimming around in the ocean or doing some light hiking even – but if you need a water shoe with more support we recommend looking below at the others we pointed out.

  • Water & Substance Drainage

The Zhaunglin Aqua Shoes could very well be the fastest draining water shoe in this entire list.

The sole has a ton of holes that the water can flow through, and keeps the shoe lightweight and doesn’t retain water.

The top side of the shoe keeps the material uniform throughout so water pushes out the top too!

  • Overall Traction

The tread isn’t the best in this list, but it certainly gets the job done for light activity so consider what exactly you need water shoes for before grabbing a pair.

And if you’re looking for a water shoe with a little more support – Zhuanglin makes an improved model for roughly $10 more you can grab here.

Zhuanglin Men's Mesh Slip On Water Shoes Casual Walking Shoes Size 10...

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Last update was in: October 23, 2017 4:42 am

$23.99

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Speedo Men’s Surfwalker 3.0

speedo mens surfwalker water shoe

Last update was on: October 23, 2017, 4:42 am
  • Overall Fit & Style

The fit on the Surfwalker 3.0 is snug, but not nearly as snug as the Body Glove 3T.

It looks more like your traditional pool shoe, but with some added features that we mention below in drainage, and traction.

There aren’t any laces here on the Surfwalker so if you need to have the extra snug fit that guarantees your water shoes won’t ever come off these aren’t them.

But if you’re looking for a good all around water shoe it certainly fits the bill.

Front picture.

We do recommend ordering your normal shoe size if you fall on a non half size.

Example:  If you wear a 9.5 normally purchase a 10.  If you wear a 10 normally purchase a 10.

 

  • Water & Substance Drainage

The water drainage is slim here on the Surfwalker.  At least on the sole of the shoe it is.

If we are talking about the synthetic upper – the water pours out just fine, and also comes out even faster from the air mesh section of the upper that allows your foot to breathe.

They don’t keep your feet super breezy, but they do get the job done.

So if you’re looking for a good water shoe on a budget we do recommend these.

  • Overall Traction

Traction of the Surfwalker 3.0 is great because of the S-trac grooves on the bottom of the sole.

That paired with the traction on the edges of the outer sole make these water shoes good for really any activity.  The quality is more than you would expect from a sub $25 shoe, and you won’t beat up your feet wearing these.

Speedo Men’s Surf Knit Water Shoe

(Best Water Shoes For Surfing)

speedo surf knit water shoe

Last update was on: October 23, 2017, 4:42 am
  • Overall Fit & Style

Much like the Surfwalker 3.0 the Speedo Surf Knits sport a similar design when you first look at it.

No laces, no straps – just a tab on the back that you can pull the water shoe over your foot with and looks like your average pool shoe.

These are the best water shoes for surfing, and for drying the quickest.

BUT – we liked these better than the Surfwalkers above when it comes to overall fit of the shoe, and the breathability we mention below.  They’re also lighter in weight than most of the water shoes in this list.

We recommend ordering a size DOWN, and a half size down if between sizes.

Example:  If you wear a 9.5 normally purchase a 9.  If you wear a 10 normally purchase a 9.

 

  • Water & Substance Drainage

So why are the Speedo Surf Knits better with breathability?

Well, just look at the amount of mesh used on the outside of the water shoe.

This will keep them from getting smelly AND they don’t retain water well (which is a good thing).

Once your foot isn’t submerged you don’t want to wait for them to drain!

  • Overall Traction

Much like the Surfwalker, the Surf Knits have excellent traction on the bottom, but they are slightly different.

It has more of a wave pattern, and the pattern runs throughout the outsole so you won’t slip in any activity.

Here’s one that Speedo also makes that is awesome.  It’s called ‘The Wake’, and it actually has FluidFlow technology – allowing the water to drain right from the bottom of the sole.

Speedo Men's the Wake Athletic Water Shoe, Black/Sulphur Spring, 11.5 C/D US

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Last update was in: October 23, 2017 4:42 am

$59.25

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Merrell All Out Blaze Water Shoe

(Best Water Shoes For Hiking)

merrell all out blaze water shoe

  • Overall Fit & Style

These almost didn’t make our ‘official list’ like The Wakes that we mentioned above, but after going over the details we couldn’t leave them off – they were too good to pass up.

They fit just like a good hiking shoe, but they are actually water shoes.

The upside here is you can use them for working out in, for working outside, or anything else.

Merrell has an exceptional reputation for making a great fitting shoe in itself and these are no different.

These are the best water shoes for hiking as they are a perfect cross of hiking shoe and water shoe.

Order your regular shoe size for the Merrell All Out Blaze

The Merrell All Out Blaze comes with full criss cross shoe laces (not just a few) so you can make them fit to your liking, and they also come with a strap in the back that’s thick enough to tug on with some force.

  • Water & Substance Drainage

Suprisingly for a water shoe that doesn’t have any sort of drainage out of the sole these drain VERY quickly.

You can use these for the beach, a hike, or even a crazy tough mudder if you’re into that kind of stuff.

The reason the All Out Blaze’s drain so well are the larger holes that allow water to flow out quickly.

The top material has a bunch of little tiny holes, but that is only covering the underlying structure with much larger holes.

  • Overall Traction

What separates these from your traditional water shoes are the Vibram (pronounced vee-bram) soles.

Vibram is a company that makes soles for hiking boots to improve traction to ensure you’re not making any costly false steps.

There are deep grooves on grooves all over the bottom of this thing.

Vibram Men’s Signa Athletic Boating Shoe

(Best Water Shoes For Traction)

vibram signa athletic boating shoe water shoe

Last update was on: October 23, 2017, 4:42 am
  • Overall Fit & Style

The Vibram Men’s Signa water shoe is much like the body glove 3T Max towards the top of our list, but instead of 3 toe pockets there are 5!

This actually makes for a more comfortable fit for some (assuming you can fit all 5 of your toes into the pockets), and for others it’s not as comfortable.  It’s just a preference.

The outside is made entirely of synthetic mesh that allows the shoe to breathe well and also allow all of the water to flow out easily.

It’s a slip on type water shoe, but also comes with a Velcro strap that you can use to make it tighter than a standard shoe.

For the Vibram Signas sizing:

If you are in between sizes then pick up or down according to how snug you like your water shoes.  Keep in mind that being in the water can make them a tad looser, and easier to slip off.

If you want them to be tighter then order a half size down, and looser – a half size up.

Example:  If you normally wear a size 9.5 you can either go with a 9 or a 10 depending on how you like your shoe.

If you are normally a size 10 then get a size 10.

 

  • Water & Substance Drainage

Like we mentioned above drainage isn’t a problem here.  It’s especially nice having the synthetic mesh on either side of the toe so that all of the water isn’t getting trapped down there and you can move freely.

  • Overall Traction

This is exactly what Vibram is known for.

These are the best water shoes if you need a ton of traction.  Well, any shoe that sports the Vibram sole is.

Vibram makes shoes, but they were originally started as a company who makes soles for hiking boots.  The Vibram Signa tread is like having tank tread for your feet.  You can tear up just about any terrain with these babies.

Columbia Men’s Drainmaker III

(Best Water Shoe For All Activities)

columbia drainmaker III water shoe

  • Overall Fit & Style

Order your normal athletic shoe size for the Columbia Drainmaker III.

The Drainmaker are best water shoes for all around wear.

The beauty in these water shoes compared to the rest (and most) is they actually have half sizes!

So if you normally run into issues with that then Columbia’s got you covered.  Or at least your foot.

We loved the style of these.

They look like a really stylish pair of athletic shoes, but hence the name Drainmaker – they are good for using as water shoes and actually intended for water activities.

  • Water & Substance Drainage

Another feature we liked in the Drainmaker III are the holes in the side of the soles.

Instead of placing them on the bottom and risking some of the traction this allows water to flow out freely, and still giving you the traction you need.

  • Overall Traction

The traction on the drainmaker III is much like the Vibram Signa water shoes we talked about above.

There are a few areas where the grooves probably aren’t as deep as Vibrams, but they give you plenty of grip.

 Water Shoes Buying Guide

All of the water shoes within this list are different obviously, but there are some features that are common.

Some features make them great, and some of them may not be your favorite.

However, that said this all depends on what your use case.  If you’re going to be running around in the sand a lot get a pair that drains the sand well so sand won’t be getting caught between your toes, and rubbing your skin to give you blisters.

You need to look at 3 main areas of these water shoes to determine what will be the best ‘fit’ J for you.

  • Overall Fit & Style
  • Water & Substance Drainage
  • Overall Traction

When looking at overall style is that really objective?

Yes and No.

If you need water shoes for lighter activity that doesn’t require the water shoe to be super snug then obviously that relates to the style, but could also relate to the water drainage.

i.e. A water shoe that is not as snug would have a direct impact on water drainage (it won’t hold water in tightly, and allows water to come in easily).

Overall Fit & Style

As fit and style go hand in hand for these water shoes it’s important to consider what you’ll be using them for like we mentioned above.

And it’s equally as important to let your mind mull over just what type of foot you have:

  • Skinny?
  • Wide?
  • Do you have BIG toes or small?
  • Do you have large or skinny ankles?

…all important to look at.

Some of these water shoes have straps that REALLY hug your ankle.  These are great for mucky type waters where you can lose a shoe once you pull your foot out of the ocean / lake bottom.

You may not need that though.

If you’re looking more along the lines of “I need to slip these on when I head to the beach or the pool, but also be able to slip them on when I take out the trash when it’s raining” then consider a pair without straps OR laces.

But keep in mind if you do go that route they are more likely to fall off if you are going on a wet hike or if you’re in mucky waters.

Need the ultimate foot hug from a water shoe?

We suggest grabbing a pair with laces so you can tie them down really tight.  Ensuring no hesitations about where your shoes may be when you’re in the middle of the action.

Water & Substance Drainage

How easily a water shoe actually dries as well as the material being used is important too.

Not only does your activity determine what type of material you should be using (are you more hardcore, or just need a basic water shoe?), but it determines how well the water shoe actually breathes.

And how well it breathes determines how ‘fresh’ the shoe stays.

Nobody likes smelly shoes after a day at the beach, or floating on the river.

We’ll also mention the water shoes that have sole drainage.

The ones that do will have cutouts within the sole that will not only keep the shoe lighter in weight, but will keep it fresh after you’re done walking in the water.

Overall Traction

Will you be walking on the beach with these?  What about areas with a lot of coral?

Yes, we’ll mention traction and the tread of the water shoes themselves but what’s even more important at times is the THICKness of the sole.

If the sole of the water shoe is flimsy you may hurt yourself pretty badly and send some pain up your spine if you step on that jagged rock with only ¼ inch of cushion rather than an inch of stout material.

The Best Water Shoes For Men

Recap

All of these water shoes in this list serve different activities in very different ways.

Consider a few of these things that we mentioned above before grabbing a pair for your next outing.

  • Do you like your toes bunched up, or free to move within the shoe?
  • Need a ton of traction?   What about a THICK sole??
  • Will you be throwing these in your car once you’re done using them or shortly after? How quickly do they need to be dry after using them?
  • How tight do you want them? Do you want to be able to lace them up like your athletic shoes, or do you want to slip them on like the pool shoes you had as a kid?

Overall they are ALL great water shoes as you can see from what we covered above, but being ‘great’ for us won’t apply to everyone.

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