On the heels of regular men's sailing shoes review ( April 2021), tested thirteen pairs of womens boat shoes in a long-winded trial run. Obviously, couldn't test all of those out there, but the shoes tested collectively represent a fair cross-section of everything available from the big brands. The test was done over five different pairs - each of which had been supplied at random by the manufacturer. For a variety of reasons, we've chosen to test only two of them here:
This particular model is a particularly popular option. It has both a sole and heel strap to maximise comfort; it is claimed to have features similar to Air Boss or even Miatas (the Italian water shoes, with similar styling, but with different build and construction). At the heart of the shoe is an especially advanced mesh construction that reduces water evaporation and is said to be highly breathable, too. All the seams are taped for extra strength and rigidity, and the underside is treated for durability. So what's it made of?
The material used in the base of the shoe is what gives the stability to it. In addition to this, the soft leather-like material used for the soles is responsive to a light touch, whilst also being extremely comfortable. The soft leather is able to respond to a light touch, so is great for walking and light exercise. However, it's not particularly breathable. One of the reasons that the manufacturers use the polyurethane as the base material is to reduce the amount of moisture that can get in the shoe and possibly discolour the rubber soles. The manufacturers claim that any problems with moisture being in the shoe are minimal, however this is one of the reasons that our bottom line on these shoes isn't very high.
This is another shoe that has a good base and mid-sole area, but the upper is lacking in terms of support and feel. A lot of women may find this a little uncomfortable to wear, even over a short distance. This is because the uppers are not particularly breathable. However, the uppers are made of a high quality leather that adds some much needed grip. The soft leather used is responsive to a light touch, so is great for walking and light exercise.
The trimmer design of these shoes is another feature that makes them slightly less breathable than some others, however, the addition of the rubber soles means that the feet are much better protected from blisters and chaffing. The laces are not too complicated and offer a simple way to tie up the laces. There are two types of laces, traditional quick tightening laces, or the revolutionary self tightening laces. The self tightening ones mean that you can get your laces tighter as required, which provides enhanced grip.
The Womens Boat Shoes that contain the Nimbus system are the most breathable of all the models. The system includes a wicking membrane and air pockets on the side of the shoe. These help to trap any moisture that is in the air, and help to improve the air flow through the shoe. The result is that these shoes are super comfortable and super fast. They also have a ventilated Emdash ventilation system that works to add to the moisture removal, improving the stability and comfort of the shoe.
The Nimbus system is good at removing moisture, but there is one part of the shoe that does not work very well. The shoe's sole does not have the ability to pivot, which means that the feet will slip when you are performing the single-directional siping exercises. The other downside to the Nimbus boat shoe is that they do not support the arches of the feet as well as the instep joints. For this reason, a Womens Boat Shoes with good foot protection and adequate arch support is the best choice.
The Nima shoes are some of the best when it comes to stability, grip and protection of the foot. The sole has a Nima ring, which allows for greater stability and grip. The soft trim in the upper part of the shoe also offers excellent bite and stability. The sole does not rotate, which means that the wearer will be able to perform the Single-Directional Sipping exercises without having to take his or her shoes off. While they do not offer the maximum amount of protection of the more expensive pairs, they do the job quite well.