How to Buy Waterproof Shoes

How to Inspect and Buy the Right Pair of Waterproof Shoes

Waterproof shoes come in handy when exploring rugged terrain that calls for a chance of rain, or crossing lakes and rivers. It's also a great pair to slip on when playing a game of golf or going for a run. Let's take a look at how to buy waterproof shoes.
Fashionhance Staff
Last Updated: Mar 8, 2018
Waterproof shoes are meant for people who live in areas that experience constant rainfall, or engage in an activity that inadvertently finds one's shoes damp, like while water rafting, playing football after the rain (puddles), or fishing in a river. First look for the purpose behind wearing such a pair, since these are made to keep feet comfortably wet without feeling icky from the buildup moisture. It also helps keep your feet firmly planted on the ground, without slipping or losing balance while performing a particular activity. Let's take a look at what to keep in mind while inspecting a pair of these.
How To Buy the Right Pair
Purpose
If you're looking for regular walking shoes, you'll find that these shoes in particular, come with extra sole padding, since the ball of your feet experiences the most pressure while you walk. If you're planning to wad in a swimming pool or hang around a source of water, there are versions of these shoes that come with openings that allow water to pass through them; like Crocs, for instance.
Leather uppers are a common feature of waterproof shoes that are worn outdoors. For those of you who go hiking and wish to sport a pair of these, you'll find that they're made using a special kind of fabric like Gore-Tex (waterproof/breathable fabric), that claim to keep feet moisture-free, without the chance of buildup.
Andrew Skurka, a noted adventurer, avid hiker, writer, and speaker, debunks the myths, so to speak, that circle around waterproof footwear. First, he says that because shoes come with waterproofing, perspiration from within is a given, where the body will react to the confinement's features and expel oil and sweat.
Once the waterproof fabric breaks down over time, it'll just invite moisture from the outside. Plus, as long as the opening where the foot enters the shoe is existent, foreign particles and moisture are bound to enter. He says that wearing non-waterproof shoes aren't all that bad, if you know how to care for your feet while in an environment that will leave your feet soggy or sweaty. Read his book on just that, in The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide.
Fit
After determining what your purpose is and which material you want to go with for maximum performance, check the shoe's quality by examining the ball area; it shouldn't be stiff when you try to manipulate it or you'll feel extremely uncomfortable and achy while wearing them. It should be flexible to the touch, allowing your feet to move efficiently without experiencing pain or strain.
Check the Seams
It is important to check which parts of the shoe are waterproof; the inner and the outer lining, or one of either. Depending on the use of the shoes, choose a pair that offers enough breathing room and quick-drying properties, to result in a comfortable experience from start to finish.
Other Features
The sole of the shoes shouldn't slip from its position on the ground when it is wet, or if a surface is super slick. Be sure that you test it on a liquid surface, to make sure that it doesn't budge from under you. While a store may not approve of this, visit one that is cool with having it exchanged; just be sure they have worthy alternatives, or you'll be stuck with a pair that doesn't really fit the bill. Or, check the box to look over the features. If the shoes fail to impress, you can always return them with a defiant complaint. After all, these shoes don't usually come cheap, especially the best kind.
A pair of gray running shoes with yellow soles, stepping
Close up of legs of unrecognizable runner, town, puddle
Couple running in rainy weather
Grooms Shoes