Last Updated: Sep 9, 2020 @ 10:33 am.

What are the best water shoes for kids? We tried popular water shoe styles on actual kiddos to find out. We looked for comfortable, lightweight and breathable shoes—plus it didn't hurt if they were cute. And affordable. Here are the ones we'd recommend from our family to yours.

FYI: We've been reviewing products for kids and families since 1994. When we test products, we buy them with our own money—no sponsors or money from brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported! Thanks in advance for reading this article!


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Best Kids Water Shoe With Strap

Stretch fabric dries quickly
Our kid testers just loved these shoes—lightweight, comfortable and easy to put on, take off. We liked the anti-slip rubber sole and cushioned insoles with holes for drainage.
$17.99

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Best Kids Water Shoe With Strap: Fantiny Boys & Girls Water Shoes 

Water shoes with a hook/eye strap have one big advantage over sock-style water shoes—they can be adjusted to fit the ever changing feet of a kid!

After trying out several different options with actual kids, we thought Fantiny’s water shoes were the best bet for most folks. Our favorite features: toe protection and anti-slip soles. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Lightweight stretch fabric that dried quickly in our tests.

• Rubber sole with anti-slip design.

• Cushioned insoles.

• Tab on the heel to grip.

• Affordable.

• Easy to put on and take off.

What Needs Work

• Sizing can run small. We found it was better to order a size or two up, compared to your kid’s regular shoe size.

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Best Budget-Friendly Kids Water Shoe

Easy on, super cute
The smooth, comfortable neck of these water shoes were a hit. Slip resistant rubber sole and lightweight. 10 cute designs, affordable price.
$9.99

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Best Budget-Friendly Kids Water Shoe: Bigib Toddler Kids Swim Water Shoes

As parents, we know—kids grow out of their shoes when you just leave the room for five minutes. We always gravitate towards shoes that are easy on the wallet, yet comfortable and lightweight.

We tried out several different pairs of shoes that were budget-friendly and ended up picking Bigib’s water shoes as the winner. These shoes had the quality features we look for, without breaking the bank.

What We Liked

• Supportive fit. We liked the fabric uppers with overlays—they fit well.

• Slip resistant rubber sole.

• Smooth neck = not scratchy! 

• Super cute patterns. There are 10 designs to choose from.

• Affordable!

• Machine washable. And they include a carry bag.

What Needs Work

• Sizing can run small.

• Not great for walking on sharp rocks. We’d recommend the water shoe mentioned earlier for those adventures.

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Best Lightweight Kids Water Shoe

Great air flow, budget-friendly
Quick drying and super comfortable, these sock-style water shoes are made of thin spandex. Super cute designs and affordable!

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Best Lightweight Kids Water Shoe: Amazon Essentials Girls EVA Water Shoe

Weight is important when it comes to kids water shoes—that’s one key piece of feedback we’ve heard over and over again from our kid testers (and their parents). The lighter the weight, the happier the kiddo when it comes to water shoes.

These water shoes weigh 2.56 ounces! That’s it! And the sneaker-like design appeals to kiddoes who don’t want to look like they are wearing baby or toddler water shoes. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Lightweight.

• Slip on style.

• Easy to clean.

• Perforations = air flow.

• Cute style.

• Sneaker-like thick sole is great for adventures on rocks, such as tide pooling on beaches.

What’s Needs Work

• Harder to put on than others we tested. Not impossible, but slip-on style water shoes take a bit more effort—great for older kiddos, not so good for younger toddlers.

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Best Kids Water Shoe Sock-Style

Breathable, flexible
Quick drying and super comfortable, these sock-style water shoes are made of thin spandex. Super cute designs and affordable!

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Best Kids Water Shoe Sock-Style: JIASUQI Kids Boys and Girls Summer Athletic Water Shoes

Spandex, breathable sock-style water shoes are a kid favorite, especially for younger kids who find them more comfortable than other more structured water shoes. That’s what our testings revealed when we tried out several popular sock-style water shoes.

When it came down to comfort at an affordable price, we thought JIASUQI’s water shoes were the best of the best. Here’s why:

What We Liked

• Rubber outer sole for grip.

• Machine washable.

• Ultra-thin spandex fabric = more comfort.

• Super cute designs—from plain solid colors to whimsical styles with whales and other cute patterns.

• Affordable.

• Quick drying.

What’s Needs Work

• Sizing runs small.

• Insoles aren’t sewn in, so they can move around a bit.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing gear for kids and families since 1994. We do hands-on testing—we buy the products with our own money and evaluate with an eye toward safety, ease of use and affordability.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100 % reader-supported!

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do hands-on testing—we buy the products with our own money and evaluate with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

Here's another key point: we don't take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no "partnerships." Our work is 100% reader-supported!

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