Difference between Water Shoes and Water Socks?

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Are they the same products with different names?


If you’re new to aquatic accessories, you’re probably gonna get confused by the sheer amount of products that exist here! Two such products are water shoes and water socks. Both seem to be useful in watery situations, but what is the difference between water shoes and water socks? Let’s find out in today’s article!


What is the difference between water shoes and water socks?

To discover the difference between water shoes and water socks, let’s take a look at both of them, individually and see what they are and what they can do!

What exactly are water shoes?

Water shoes are nothing short of a blessing for hiking enthusiasts and people who love beaches. These are special shoes that allow you to walk through water without the worry of hurting your feet on something sharp. Water shoes are made of a unique mesh that allows water and sand to drain out super fast, making sure you don’t feel uncomfortable in your shoes! This mesh also lets you move your feet freely without unnecessary obstruction. The soles on water shoes are tough and thick to protect your feet in case you step on something prickly. Besides being tough, the bottom of these soles are made of rubber and are arranged in a pattern that maximizes the amount of grip you have on the ground.


Apart from protection and traction, water shoes also give you a layer of insulation between your feet and the water. We all know how important keeping your feet warm can be when you’re swimming in cold waters or hiking on chilly, wet trails.


Water shoes have a multitude of applications, from wearing them to the beach to using them while hiking, wading through rivers, playing around in the lake, and much more! If there’s a situation that requires you to get your feet wet, water shoes will help you through it!

You can also wear water shoes to the pool, where they will prevent you from slipping around the edges and also protect you from the nasty fungi and bacteria found on pool locker room floors.

Water shoes can also be used as substitutes for boat shoes, because they essentially perform the same functions; saving your feet from the deck, saving the deck from your shoes, and making sure you don’t slip and fall off!

Can you swim in water shoes?

Yes! You can swim in water shoes. They might seem a little heavy on your feet at first, but you’ll get used to it!

What are water socks and what are they for?

Water socks are exactly what water shoes are, but in sock form! These socks are usually made of neoprene, which is the same material that is used to make diving suits. It’s comfortable and entirely waterproof, which makes it a solid companion to water shoes!  Anyone who’s stepped in a puddle can testify to the fact that nobody likes soggy socks. Nobody. Water socks, or neoprene socks, solve this problem! Alongside keeping your feet dry, water socks also keep them insulated from the cold!

Just like water shoes, you can wear these socks anywhere where there are chances of your feet getting wet. This includes situations like the beach, long hikes on wet trails, water wading, canoeing, fishing and even boating! If you’re someone who loves doing the aforementioned activities, you’ll find water socks incredibly useful in your adventures!


You can also use them as regular socks to save your feet from stray puddles around town!

Can you swim in water socks?

Absolutely! You can also wear water socks under your flippers while snorkeling for an added layer of insulation.

Can you wash water socks?

Cleaning water socks is as easy as turning them inside out and hand washing them in warm soapy water!


It’s safe to say that both water shoes and water socks are incredibly useful inventions that need to be taken advantage of.

The difference between water shoes and water socks boils down to this; water shoes help more with protection and grip, while water socks keep your feet dry and warm. In conclusion, pairing the two together to form the ultimate feet protector, sounds like an excellent idea!

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Jenny Schmidt

Jenny Schmidt

As an avid swimmer and kayak lover for decades, I know how important it is to get the right shoes to keep your feet healthy.
I'll let you in on some secrets only a few know...

About Me

As an avid swimmer and kayak lover for decades, I know how important it is to get the right shoes to keep your feet healthy.
I’ll let you in on some secrets only a few know…

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