Garth loves camping under the stars with his Arb III, scuba diving, snorkeling, and also tanning. His favourite snorkel spots include Alanya (Turkey), Koh Rong (Cambodia), and Maui (Hawaii, USA).
He also loves to visit the cenotes in Mexico and he recommends everyone reads the book, “The Soul of an Octopus”, because, he says “they are sensitive, just like me”.
Snorkeling is a great sport that is enjoyed by water-lovers all over the world.
However, exploring of the underwater world is way more fun when you don’t have to worry about poor-quality rental gear.
Even the best swimmers can easily get tired on their snorkeling adventures if their gear is low quality.
In order to truly enjoy all the beauty of the underwater world, investing into a high-quality pair of fins is a must.
Once you get yourself a pair of high-quality fins you get to spend longer periods of time in the water without cramping or tiring.
Owning your own pair of great fins makes it much easier for you to go snorkeling whenever and wherever you can.
To make it easier for you to truly dive into the amazing underworld we’ve reviewed some of the best snorkeling fins available on the market. However, before we move on to our reviews, we’ll discuss how to choose the best pair of fins and what to look for when making your purchase.
Here is what we are going to cover today:
- What to look for when buying snorkeling fins?
- Types of fins
- We review the best snorkeling fins:
Ok, let’s get to it…
What to look for when buying snorkeling fins?
There are dozens of factors that you need to pay attention to when selecting the right pair of fins for snorkeling and scuba diving. Some of the factors are specific to certain makes and models only. Others are applicable to snorkeling fins in general.
The most important factors to choosing the right pair of fins can be summarized in three steps:
- Selecting the right type of fins
- Selecting the right features
- Achieving the right fit
Selecting the right type of fins
Almost all fins fall into two main categories:
- Full-foot fins
- Open-heel fins (adjustable fins)
Both of these categories have their pros and cons, so choosing one category over the other can be tricky.
Full-foot fins usually lack sufficient power to overcome the additional weight of scuba diving gear. Although there are some high-end full-foot fins that can provide enough thrust for scuba diving, they can only be worn over bare feet or thin wet suit socks.
Full-foot fins are mostly used for casual snorkeling in warm water.
On the other hand, open-heel fins are generally worn over wetsuit or drysuit boots, meaning they can be used in colder water.
For people who like to alternate between casual snorkeling and scuba diving, open-heel fins might be a better option.
Selecting the best features
There are plenty of features that you need to consider when choosing between different fin makes and models. These features can make your snorkeling experience much more fun and memorable.
Two specific features, however, you really need to pay attention to are worth noting.
Whatever type of fins you decided to go for should have easy-to-use heel straps. Most snorkeling fins have easily adjustable heel straps that are connected to the foot pocket with quick-release buckles.
Some high-end models also feature spring or elastic cord straps that are incredibly easy to use and don’t require you to worry about any adjustments or releases. Springs heel straps can also be bought as an after-market add on for most standard fins.
Fin blades range from split blades to advanced fins that incorporate some type of high-tech hinges that can make the fins much more efficient.
What you want to achieve with your fins is not so much power but efficiency. When selecting the right pair of fins, you need to find the ones that deliver the most thrust for the least effort.
The fins that provide great efficiency may cost a bit more; however, given how long you will be using them and the fact that you will be using them with every movement of your snorkeling adventures, this investment is definitely worthwhile.
Achieving the best fit
If you plan on using your fins with wetsuit boots, you should try on the fins while wearing the same pair of boots you will use while snorkeling or diving.
If you are purchasing fins and boots for the first time, consider choosing the boots first, then the fins.
When trying out the fins, the bottom of the foot pocket needs to cover at least 2/3 of the sole of your boot. Only a small portion should be left sticking out the back.
If you buy fins that are too small for you, your feet might hurt. Contrary, if you buy fins that are too large, they may dig into the front of your ankles.
Next, we discuss different types of fins available.
Types of fins
Standard fins are the simplest in design and most popular. These fins come with flat blades which cause water to spill over the sides, reducing efficiency and creating turbulence in water.
Standard fins work similarly as an ore. They propel you forward with every kick cycle. These fins are usually least expensive.
Vented fins have vents at the base of the foot pocket. These vents are designed to let the water pass through the fin, making you move through the water more efficiently.
Channel fins are designed to flex and change the flow of water.
When you kick, the fin blade forms a U shape channel which helps capture and direct water more efficiently than just having ribs on the sides.
Channel fins are made of combination of rigid and soft materials which allow them to flex and change shape.
Split fins have a physical split going down the middle of the blade. The split fin works similarly to the wings of a plane or even boat propellers. The split causes water to smoothly flow around the fin, causing less turbulence.
Kicking the fins is really easy and their design reduces snorkeler’s energy consumption.
Hinged fins have a point on the blade that hinges. This hinge helps the blade to tackle water at the best angle possible.
Although these fins cost the most, they are definitely worth the investment as they significantly increase one’s performance.
Ok! Let’s move onto our reviews! We’ll start with Wildhorn Topside…
Wildhorn Topside Fins
Wildhorn Topside fins are great snorkeling fins for traveling – they are incredibly light, compact, durable, and really comfortable.
The fins feature integrated neoprene boots which provide all the comfort you need. The shorter length of the fins makes them also easy to walk in. With these fins, awkward waddling in and out of the water is a thing of the past.
The fins also provide great maneuverability in the water. They will easily propel you through the water at high speeds. Although longer fins could provide you with more thrust for diving, the Wildhorn Topside fins’ shorter blades will provide noticeable boost to your swimming.
The ultra-grip sole lets you move through rocks and seaweed without worrying about sharp objects or slippery surfaces. The fins have strong rubber soles which provide excellent protection.
The adjustable heel strap with hook and loop cinch system allow for a custom fit. The fins fit perfectly to your feet like a pair of shoes. The closed toe and heel prevent cramping and hypertension in your feet.
Wildhorn Topside fins are incredibly compact and light so they can easily fit into any backpack. You will never again have to travel without your favorite pair of fins!
On to the next pair of fins…
Seavenger Torpedo Fins
An array of sizes and unique colors is what makes the Seavenger Torpedo snorkeling fins a perfect buy for your whole family.
Thanks to their innovative open heel design, the fins are a perfect option for those with wide or big feet. You don’t have to worry whether you will be able to put the fins on.
The adjustable foot strap and large open foot pocket allow for a custom fit. Thanks to these features, the Seavenger Torpedo fins are great for sharing amongst family members or friends.
The fins’ blades are sharply designed so they respond great to any style of kicks. The ventilation holes on the blades channel and propel water with every down stroke, which in return significantly enhances the power of your kicks.
The Seavenger Torpedo swim fins are only 16 inches long, which makes them ideal for traveling. The fins also come with a mesh drawstring bag for quick drying and easy transport. Once you try these fins on, you will never again want to ravel without them.
U.S. Divers Proflex FX
U.S. Divers Proflex FX fins come with dual-composite long blades which make these fins incredibly versatile. The fins can be used for both snorkeling and diving. The blades offer great snap, excellent power and styling.
The fins feature super-soft and comfortable open-heeled foot pocket with adjustable strap which guarantees a comfortable fit for hours of underwater fun. The long blades allow for production of powerful strokes, which saves your legs from fatigue.
The dual-composite materials used in these fins provide excellent snap and thrust. These materials allow you to move through the water with great speed and agility.
The fins come packed in a mesh drawstring bag, which makes transporting them super easy. The mesh drawstring bag can also be used for drying the fins fast and keeping them in perfect condition.
On to the next one…
U.S. Divers Sea Lion Fins
U.S. Divers Sea Lion fins are top rated snorkeling fins that come in a wide range of sizes which makes it incredibly easy to find the perfect fit.
The fins come with full foot pockets designed to hold your feet tightly and secure. The full foot pocket design ensures the fins stay securely in place at all times. These foot pockets will ensure you remain comfortable no matter how much time you spend in the water.
The fins were designed to be extra buoyant. The rubber construction makes the fins durable and sturdy, while remaining incredibly lightweight. The materials used for the foot pockets are firm, yet soft on the skin to avoid irritating chafing.
Although the fins are mostly made of rubber, the rubber used is stiff enough to displace a lot of water with minimal effort. Thanks to the materials used, you can get the most out of your kicks without overtiring yourself and spending all of your energy.
The stiff blades produce a lot of propulsion with each kick, while the ergonomic foot pockets take stran off the feet and ankles, making your snorkeling adventure fun and comfortable.
The fins are available in two-tone yellow and blue variety. You can purchase them on Amazon or eBay.
Last but not least, Phantom Aquatic Speed sport…
Phantom Aquatics Speed Sport
Phantom Aquatics Speed Sport are incredibly comfortable and powerful fins that come with an optimized hinge point which automatically corrects your fins shape throughout your every kick.
The fins are very wide, which makes them really comfortable and very easy to put on and off. Thanks to the open heel design, the fins are a perfect option for those with wide or big feet.
The heel straps shape precisely to the curves of your feet. An extended sole plate adds power to quickly move you through the water, without putting too much strain and effort on your legs and feet.
The fins come nicely packed in a mesh carrying bag so you can take them with you wherever you go.