Last updated: 17/10/2022

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I think you will agree with me when I say: it is really scary to swim barefoot in the sea when you know that small sea urchins are waiting for you. Nobody likes injuries! But you can easily avoid this by wearing your favourite swimming shoes. But the question is: which are the right ones? You’ve come across the right article. With our swimming shoes test 2022 we want to help you with the buying process! Pay attention to the advantages and disadvantages. We have already made the comparison for you in advance.


  • Swimming shoes are always associated with a low risk of injury. You have protection from sea urchins and can walk safely on wet surfaces.
  • Basically, a distinction is made between classic bathing shoes and toe swimming shoes, whereby both variants can be found in different materials and price ranges.
  • Swimming shoes are very accessible, but your health comes first. Generally speaking, the more orthopaedic, the healthier!

The best Swimming Shoes: Our Picks

There are an incredible number of swimming shoes on the market. But not all swimming shoes are convincing in their flexibility and durability. In the following, we have picked out the 5 best swimming shoes to help you with your purchase.

Swimming shoes: buying and evaluation criteria

In the following, we will show you what you should look for when buying swimming shoes. To give you an overview, we have listed the most important criteria:

In the following paragraphs we will explain what the individual criteria are.

Material and breathability

This is where your health comes into play: Does the shoe have any breathable properties at all and does it support comfort?

  • Neoprene: Neoprene swimming shoes are the most common. Because of their perfect insulation, they ensure that your feet are protected from the cold. They are extremely light, which means you can just put them in your pocket and you won’t even believe they are there! You can expect optimal ventilation.
  • Mesh: This material is mostly used as an insert. Its main function: effective ventilation. That’s why you can often find this fabric on the side! They also make for a very comfortable wearing experience.
  • Synthetic: This material is definitely thicker than the others. This means that they are unfortunately not suitable for travelling. However, synthetic swimming shoes dry relatively quickly and last longer.
  • Rubber: These swimming shoes are particularly quick-drying. In addition, they are completely non-slip. The only disadvantage is that most of them do not have a fastener.

Each material offers its own advantages and disadvantages. Fortunately, the different manufacturers have brought certain combinations to the market! The decision is up to you.


Every shoe should be adjusted to your own foot so that it fits tightly. You don’t have to neglect this part, otherwise the size you buy has to fit PERFECTLY. However, this is not always the case. Wet feet in particular need your help. The fastener can provide flexibility and stability at the same time. Bathing shoes with Velcro fasteners save time compared to other fastening options. Your child can use the Velcro fastener independently. The only problem? A Velcro fastener is not entirely suitable for sand, as the hold can loosen over time. Another option are swimming shoes with a zip. They have the undoubted advantage that the wearer can close the whole foot completely. However, such models are relatively expensive and costly to repair. Drawstrings or drawcords can be a possible cheap solution. However, they are not the most stable alternative and can break very easily.


You don’t want to slip. That’s true for you too, isn’t it? That’s why you have to make sure that the soles are non-slip. That is the first requirement. In any case, comfort is an important part of your decision. We recommend that you choose relatively thick soles because they are particularly ergonomic. However, the swimming shoes do not have to be too heavy.

Swimming shoes: frequently asked questions and answers

In the following, we would like to answer the most important questions about swimming shoes. We have selected the questions for you and will answer them shortly. After reading the guide, you will know all the essential background information about swimming shoes.

Who are swimming shoes suitable for?

In principle, one can say: swimming shoes are key articles! They are suitable for everyone. But you should know what your intended use is so that you can buy the perfect alternative with the best design. The function of swimming shoes for children should not be underestimated. Since children always enjoy the sea carelessly, they may step on sea urchins, for example. This could have certain health consequences that are no fun!


Swim shoes are perfect for kids and can practically protect their feet. (Image source: Leo Rivas / unsplash)

In recent, many swim shoes are unisex and worn equally by men and women. All that’s left is the choice of colours!

What types of swimming shoes are there?

If you want to buy swimming shoes, there are two alternatives to choose between: Toe shoes and classic bathing shoes. We have compiled the most important advantages and disadvantages of both types below:
Type Advantages Disadvantages
Five toe shoes Space for each toe, perfect comfort and flexibility Mostly with drawstring (not stable)
Classic bathing / surfing shoes Good ergonomics, suitable for sports Sole not always non-slip

As the name suggests, there is sufficient space for each toe in toe shoes, which provides perfect flexibility. However, most toe swim shoes have a pull cord, which, as already mentioned, is not particularly stable. Oh, and one more thing: don’t forget that more flexibility generally comes with higher prices! But if you are looking for swimming shoes that are comfortable and particularly durable, you should consider the toe shoes. Compared to the toe shoes, the classic bathing shoes are not particularly flexible. But that doesn’t mean they don’t offer good ergonomics. Most types are also ideal for sporting activity. Finally, classic bathing shoes are often much cheaper to buy than toe shoes. So if price is your main concern, it’s worth buying the simplest kind for you.

How much does a pair of swimming shoes cost?

This question can never be answered with certainty. You have to take into account the wide price range and the different manufacturers. At Lidl, you can get fairly inexpensive models for as little as ten euros. But if you’re willing to pay eight to ten times that, check out the online models. It is very important to know what you need the bathing shoes for. Are you an athlete? Then we suggest you buy the high-quality aqua shoes. For normal private use, you don’t have to worry: There are always very cheap alternatives between 10 and 20 euros!
Type Price range
Toe shoes Approximately 30 to 70 euros
classic bathing shoes Circa 10 to 50 Euro

Toe shoes start at a price of 30 euros, which is a “more expensive” start compared to the other type. However, in most cases the quality is higher and you can expect them to be more robust.

However, the quality of the toe shoes is in most cases higher and you can expect them to be more robust.

The classic bathing shoes are simpler and more accessible, although of course the “sportier” shoes cost more. So if you are interested in water sports, there are all kinds of aqua shoes to buy.

What are the alternatives to swimming shoes?

However, aqua shoes are varied and can come in many different shapes. Each model has its own advantages and disadvantages. In the following section, we will give you a brief overview of the alternatives to swimming shoes.
Type Description
Aqua Socks These alternatives are extremely light and allow you to walk naturally. You should note, however, that they are not breathable and do not provide any special protection.
Lightweight loafers Lightweight loafers are also a possible solution. Usually with a special sole, they offer wonderful flexibility. In addition, they are extremely light.

Each of the water shoes has certain advantages that are not to be sneezed at. Nevertheless, the swimming shoes seem to be superior to the others in many criteria. Not coincidentally, swimming shoes are very common nowadays.

How can I wash swimming shoes?

Special cleaning is definitely not necessary. If you want to use the washing machine, it is best to pay attention to the care symbols on the label. In most cases, you can scrub them with soapy water in the shower. Then just let them dry for a short while and then…they are like NEW!

How do swimming shoes have to fit properly?

Swim shoes must fit tightly. Avoid bad fasteners and pay attention to the sole! Movement in the water must not be affected. You need the perfect experience!

The swimming shoes must fit tightly, but the movement in the water should not be impaired.

The swimming shoe can also be purchased in a shoe size that is one step above your own shoe size. Nevertheless, the swimming shoe should not slip off your foot quickly.


With the help of swimming shoes you can swim, dive or do water sports. Swimming shoes protect everyone’s feet! When buying swimming shoes, you can choose between toe shoes and aqua shoes.

The classic swimming shoes are perfect for beginners because of their low price. Toe shoes are also a possible alternative, but they are more expensive. If you follow our advice, you will quickly and easily find the perfect choice. When buying, make sure that the swimming shoes are ideally suited to the intended use.

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