What to Look for with Toddler Water Shoes
- Design. Water shoes vary quite a bit in coverage and weight, from thin straps to a full sneaker. They can be made of leather, synthetic materials, or textiles.
- Ease of putting them on. One concern, especially for toddlers, is ease of putting them on. Watch for if they are slip-on and what kind of straps or ties they use.
- Comfort. As a parent, the last thing you want in a toddler shoe is one that hurts, rubs, or causes any other discomfort. With a water shoe (depending on what activity you are doing), you want a shoe that will protect your child’s feet and not cause blisters.
- Durability and wear. You want toddler water shoes that are going to breathe and dry well. Another factor is how stinky they will get and how easy to wash they are. Some shouldn’t go in the washing machine, and some are more breathable and anti-microbial than others.
- Sizing. This is important! Too loose can cause tripping or slipping. And too tight, especially with perforations, can cause blisters. Too big can mean your toddler trips and falls more easily. It can also be tricky to find the right toddler size in stock.
- Color/pattern. Your child’s preferences will make a big difference here. Some shoes offer more colors and patterns than others. Even the design creates a big difference in style. Most are pretty basic, but a few have a sporty design or a fun pattern.
- Ethics and Safety. Synthetic materials can potentially create a lot of harmful emissions in the environment when they’re made. Leather is a concern for those avoiding animal products. Even textiles vary in how they are made–where they were made or imported from can make a difference in conditions. They can also be made with harmful dyes and chemicals.
10 Best Water Shoes for Toddlers
1. Native Unisex Kid’s Jefferson Slip-On Sneaker
2. Stride Rite Made 2 Play Water Shoe
Stride Rite has been making water shoes for kids for 85 years, and they offer this sturdy sneaker design. There are plain options, but they also come in bright colors and fun designs, like rainbow and emoji. They use a hook and loop closure. The shoes’ uppers are made of Ethylene Vinyl Acetate, with a synthetic sole that includes rubber pods for non-slip. The shoes are made in the USA and are vegan. This is a very popular shoe, and a big plus is they can be washed in the washing machine. They do have an anti-microbial lining to help with stink, so hopefully that will cut down on the need to wash them often! These shoes are a great choice for boating or hiking.
3. CIOR Fantiny Boy & Girls’ Water Aqua Shoes
4. JIASUQI Baby Boys and Girls Barefoot Swim Water Skin Shoes
5. Fanture Girls & Boys Water Shoes
6. Merrell Hydro Water Sandal
The Hydro Water Sandal is a strappy sneaker designed with a thick sole. It has decorative bungee lacing and comes in 10 colors with accent colors. It’s made of leather and textile with a rubber sole. It holds up for hiking with a wrap around toe guard and has an adjustable hook-and-loop closure. It is vented and includes a liner to avoid stickiness! This a great hardy option for a kiddo who will be doing some walking and hiking!
7. i play. Baby Toddler (1-4 Years) Water Shoes
8. Adorllya Water Shoes
9. Salt Water Sandals by Hoy Shoe The Original Sandal
10. PLAE Kids’ Mimo Sneaker
PLAE Mimo “Mighty Mariner” sneaker is a popular choice for toddlers. The shoe is lightweight EVA, and the sole is synthetic. This is a very carefully engineered water shoe, using anatomical science. It follows the contours of a foot to be healthy for a child’s growth. It has a secure, adjustable fit with a tongue and tabs to make it easy for shoes to come on and off.
The sole is flexible for range of motion and protects from abrasion along with the toe guard. The heel avoids slips with a rubber, raised plug. It has an expanded tread pattern with raised lugs for extra slip grip. There are perforations a little higher on the shoe to avoid small rocks and debris getting under the foot. The PLAE Kids’ Mimo Sneaker comes in 8 colors.
The quality of this shoe isn’t as good as others on this list. These shoes can cause blisters.