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Boat Shoes - Reviews & Guides For 2024

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Boat shoes buying guide

Style and comfort, boat shoes are a unique blend of both these aspects. These incredible shoes allow you to dazzle your look at different occasions. Be it a classy luxury boat party or a casual get together with your family and loved ones, these boots can pull off anything.

There are many good boots out there. You just need to have a keen eye to select the right choice, and you will witness the practicality of the shoes.

What are the boat shoes? Benefits of boat shoes

People use a boat shoe like slip-on footwear. This type of shoes is specially designed with a low cut. The rubber sole of these shoes makes them non-skid and soft as well.

You can quickly identify a boat shoe because of its hand-sewn structure. The shoelaces run through the eyelets with a circular configuration to make you get a proper fit for those shoes.

You can choose these shoes for different benefits such as—

  1. Comfortable

You must find a boat shoe that will provide you with maximum comfort while sailing and fishing. Since these shoes are considered as essential fishing gear, the quality and structure are getting improved gradually for better support.

  1. Safety

A quality boat shoe helps you to protect from accidental falling and keeps you safe while sailing. These shoes are designed with standard quality leather, which does not allow the water to get inside. Moreover, the rubber sole prevents slippage so you can use these shoes effectively.

  1. Cost-effective

You may find it a little costlier, but if you consider as a long-term investment, it will be worthy of your money. Choosing a premium quality boat shoe will be useful for a long time because of its comfort and durability.

Why should you read a buying guide before selecting the boat shoes?

The right pair of boat shoes will provide you high comfort and even compliment your looks. But do you know how to select the best shoes for yourself?

The buying guide provides you all the information on all the aspects of the boots and aids you in making the right choice. You can quickly evaluate all the characteristics and select the best option.

Time to deem the significant characteristics of the product.

Things to deem about while selecting an appropriate Boat Shoes


Without considering the quality of materials, you can not choose the best quality boat shoes. Since the boat of the deck remains wet most of the time, you should choose a material that provides safety and comfort. Usually, two types of materials are used in the boots.


There are different types of leather including—

  1. Full-Grain

It is found from the thickest cowhide, so it ensures maximum durability. Also, this can be the best choice for a boat shoe. Shoes made out of this full-grain leather provide a soft feeling, and they become comfortable to use with time.

  1. Top Grain Leather

This kind of leather is also durable because it is made from the thick hide. But it has a different tanning process from the full-grain leather. All the surface imperfections are removed from the coat by sanding it down. Like full-grain leather, top grain leather is also used in making high-quality shoes.

  1. Genuine

Commonly, this leather is considered as the poorest standard of leather. This leather is prone to cracks because it is mixed with glue that works like binders. A boat shoe made of genuine leather can be the right choice for a single summer season, but you have to replace them quickly.

  1. Suede

It is renowned for its soft, smooth feeling. The hide is cut deeply for this type of leather. Also, it provides the shoes with a casual look that comes with a warm texture. Suede is available with lighter colors so that they can be the right choice for sailing and fishing for the summer.

  1. Nubuck

This type of leather is found from the outer part of the hide and comes with excellent texture. There is a difference in the processing, which makes it more durable than suede. So, it is a little more expensive. Having a boat shoe made of nubuck makes sure that you can use them for longer without any replacement.


Canvas is found from cotton, and it is lightweight and breathable. If you are looking for a boat shoe with a vintage appearance, you should go for canvas material. It is comfortable as well as durable. This budget material is ideal for all types of users.

Because of its better breathability, it helps eliminate the smell from your feet, which is not available in any other materials. The lighter weight also makes it easy to maintain, and you will not feel any discomfort while wearing shoes that are made out of the canvas.


You will find a different range of colors for these shoes. However, most people are likely to choose the dark brown color among all other colors.

Dark brown is considered one of the most versatile and classic colors and makes you look more handsome. You can use dark brown boat shoes with any type of clothing. Also, you can go for the navy color that goes well with grey and burgundy trousers.

Navy is perfect for khaki-colored bottoms, but it will not be the right choice that can match with denim. So, choose your shoe color wisely and look hot and stylish in the best possible way.


Another critical factor that you must look for while choosing the boat shoes is fit. If you do not get the right fit, it will become very uncomfortable for you to wear them for a long time.

Keep it in mind that proper fit ensures better comfort. To offer the highest support, these shoes are made with a simple design and shape. Also, the rubber sole has a non-slip feature. Besides, there are some essential things to deem about while choosing the right fit for these shoes.

You should check if there is any gap between your big toe and the top of the shoe when you stand straight. There should be at least a half-inch gap.

Make sure that the ball of the foot fits appropriately into the broadest part of the shoe. It will be better to walk around and check the tightness of the shoe before making a purchase.


The style of your boat shoe directly depends on your choice. Different people like different styles for their boat shoes. Typically, there are four styles available in the market.

  1. Casual

This style of shoes is appropriate for style with comfort. It adds extra sophistication to your look, and it is also ideal for your summer party. You can go for a casual boat shoe with a leather-made upper part, and the outsole is thinner to provide ultimate satisfaction.

  1. Comfort

Your comfort boat shoe is designed with a thicker insole and cushioned outsole, so they are very suitable for day to day use. Majorly, canvas material is used to make these shoes that you can wear with different outfits. You can use them either for your outdoor party or for a beach walk without any hassles.

  1. Athletic

Though it may sound a little unusual, you can find an athletic boat shoe that can be worn for sailing and fishing. These shoes support you the best in wet and slick areas. The upper part of these shoes has high breathability, which comes with a slip-resistant outsole. Therefore, you can take each step confidently without worrying about slipping.

  1. Outdoor

An outdoor boat shoe is a footwear that is specifically made for outdoor use. It has an anti-slip outsole that is engineered with drainage that makes it appropriate for outdoor use. This style also comes with better lacing, so your foot is secured in the right place without any movements when you are walking for long hours.


The rubber sole is used in boat shoes for a tighter grip. To protect you from the boat's slippery surface, these shoes are designed with more grip than any other shoes. While choosing your boat shoe, make sure that they will not come off from your feet.

The heel should be tight enough that it can deal with stress, and it will not slip off from your ankle. It is better not to wear shocks when you are wearing a boat shoe.

You can look for tracks on the outer sole of the shoes, exactly like a car tier. It will push out water from the boots and thus ensures a better grip.

The softer rubber found in the outsole is suitable for additional grip. Because of this more elastic rubber, your shoes will have a wide surface area that provides an improved grip for the users.


When you are about to purchase boat shoes, you must give priority to the sole of the shoes. These shoes are commonly used in wet and slippery decks of the boats. So if you overlook the quality of both insoles and outsoles, it might get problematic to maintain the shoes in the future.

Generally, rubber is preferred to design the sole for these shoes because it comes with a slip-resistant feature and provides the best support for the users to walk around a wet deck.

Furthermore, you should look for siping, which is essential for having better traction on slippery areas, and it helps to push away water from your shoes.

  1. Upper

If your boat shoe has a water-wicking upper, it will keep your shoe dry in an effective manner. Though leather upper does not get dry easily, they are good for providing maximum comfort.

Moreover, you will find a padded tongue in most of the good quality shoes that are perfect for additional comfort.

  1. Insole

Usually, insoles made of leather are used in these shoes because leather is more comfortable than other materials. However, some insoles are designed with mesh that supports better draining of water.

Some shoes have built-in drainage holes. You can go for a removable sole that allows your shoes to dry quickly.

  1. Heel

Most of these shoes come with elevated heels. But some brands make these shoes without any heels. You must check the fit in advance, so the shoe does not slip off your heel while walking long distances.


You should check the durability of your chosen boat shoes and confirm that you are allowed to use them for long years without any replacement. Ensure that the shoes you pick up are well-built and hard-wearing to withstand any difficult conditions.

These shoes are mainly used in boats, so they come across saltwater most of the time. If they are not durable, you will face a problem while walking.

These shoes are made up of leather material that needs proper care to last long. Moreover, the upper of the shoes should be resistant to strain. It is better to choose the eyelets that are constructed with the corrosion-resistant feature.

The laces are strong and tough enough because of the quality materials. You should check the stitching of the shoes to ensure durability.

Additional features

We have already discussed the key features that you should ponder before buying your boat shoe. However, some extra features are also equally essential to understand the quality of the boat shoes. Some of these features are given below:

  1. Non-marking sole

Non-black soles are used to make non-marking soles. They are softer, so they do not create any marks on the boat decks while walking. These soles are also known for the proprietary as well as tested outsoles.

  1. Water-resistant

There is a high chance that your boat shoe will get wet very often. Though you are not using these shoes in water, they must be resistant to water so that they do not get damaged by the saltwater.

Both the leather and canvas are likely to have wear and tear after they are exposed to water for long. Only water-resistant capacity can protect the shoe significantly.

  1. Slip-resistant

Your boat shoe should be resistant to slip. The wet deck of the boat can become slippery and cause an accidental fall. To get rid of this hazard, choose a boat shoe with sticky outsoles, and take each step with confidence.

  1. Waterproof

A waterproof boat shoe can be ideal for fishing. It is suitable for a rocky beach as well. Also, you can have an excellent look even if the shoe is underwater.

The waterproof feature will also protect your boat shoe when you wear them in shallow waters, so they do not get damaged easily.

  1. Antimicrobial

It is wise to buy a boat shoe that is antimicrobial. It will stop the breeding of bacteria. If your feet remain wet for a long time, especially in the summer, it will cause smelly feet.

So, choosing an antimicrobial boat shoe is always a boon for the users.

  1. Orthopedic

An orthopedic boat shoe comes with a thicker foam, which is perfect for additional comfort. There are some diabetic shoes designed with a deeper heel to prevent any type of skin issues.

Tips to take care of your boat shoes

Like any other shoes, you should also maintain your boat shoe in the best possible way to increase their longevity. Canvas shoes are suitable for machine wash, but leather shoes require proper attention. You can follow the given instructions to take care of the shoes easily.

  1. Clean the debris

Take a brush to wipe away the dirt and debris from the leather shoes. For suede, you should brush in one direction. Make sure the brush has softer bristles so it will not leave any scratch on the leather. Brush away the dust and dirt after using it every time.

  1. Polish the shoes

You can choose cream, paste polishes instead of liquid to clean the leather shoes. It is suggested not to use any polishes containing alcohol. Otherwise, it will crack the leather. You can remove the shoelaces beforehand. Let it dry and then use a dry cloth to clean it.

  1. Conditioning

You can apply conditioners and oils on leather so that the shoes do not get too dry. Also, it is vital to restore the luster of the leather. Do not condition the shoes in moist weather and polish them properly before conditioning each time.

  1. Dry the shoes

Keep your wet shoes in an airy place to dry them. However, you should not put them under direct sunlight to make sure that the leather will not shrink or get brittle quickly.

  1. Clean the soles

If you have a clean toothbrush, it will be effortless to remove dirt from your boat shoe soles.

  1. Store the shoes properly

You can look for a shoe tree to maintain the shape of your shoes. Shoe trees are useful to soak up moisture to keep your boots dry. It will also help you to store the shoes without any effort.

Boat shoes for different occasions

If you think your boat shoe is only for fishing and sailing, you will be wrong. Nowadays, different styles are available in the market for men that they can use every day comfortably.

There are some particular occasions where you can comfortably wear these shoes to have a stylish look.

  1. Travel

When it comes to traveling, your feet need to bear a lot. Also, you may have to remove your shoes in the airport for security checking purposes.

But if you have a boat shoe, it will be very convenient to take off the shoes in less time. You can also choose any deep color like black or brown, so the shoes do not get dirty while you are traveling.

  1. Beach day

If you are a beach person, nothing will be better than a boat shoe. These shoes are ideal for use in sand and water. You can walk around the beach wearing these shoes. They are breathable enough and protect your feet from getting burnt as well.

  1. Office

It may sound weird, but yes, you can wear your boat shoe in the office. They are suitable for both professional and business looks. You can choose black leather to make yourself look more professional. These shoes go well with straight-leg pants and oxford shirt to enhance your office look.

  1. Date

You can choose to wear your boat shoe on your dates. That will be impressive. Besides, a perfect outfit and proper hairdo, the right pair of shoes are also essential while you are going on dates. So you can go for these shoes to look stylish without trying hard.


  1. Any tips on lacing the boat boots?

You can try different styles like a tassel, fishtail, or barrel according to the choice of clothes and occasion. The shoes will complement your outfits, but the lacing style can even enhance the look.

  1. How should I select the right size for my feet?

Here are some tips that will aid you in selecting the best fit:

If you have a standard foot, choose the size that precisely fits your foot's length.

If you have a big toe or the second toe is longer, others opt for one size bigger than your foot.

Choose one size smaller if your foot shape is small.

Pick one size bigger if you have a high foot arch.

  1. Can saltwater ruin my leather boat shoes?

No, the saltwater can not ruin your shoes totally. But, if the salt remains on the leather and forms a coating on the shoes, then it can severely damage it. The salt will change the properties of the product and dim the shine and luster.

  1. Can I wear boat shoes with my favorite jeans?

Yes, the boots will complement your favorite jeans. Pairing both these apparel will let you mark your presence on different occasions. We suggest going with dark wash or basic blue style jeans.

Summing up

All you need is to find the right pair of boat shoes, rest these boots will complement your outfits brilliantly and will allow you to experiment with different styles.

In this buying guide, we have listed all the essentials to deem about while selecting the best product. Go through every point and make an informed decision to choose the best fit for yourself. / - © Copyright 2020