When you’re sailing on the open sea, having a firm foundation is crucial to keeping you safe on deck. Essentially, the right footwear is one of the most important pieces of gear you’ll take with you when sailing, and because of this, choosing the perfect footwear should always be a priority. These boat shoes by Sperry have withstood the test of time. They’re not only fashionable, but they have what it takes to keep you upright and on your feet, even in moderately choppy waters. Aside from being fashionable and functional, they’re also incredibly comfortable. Reasonably priced, this pair of classic sailing footwear can be a perfect choice for a wide range of applications and water and weather conditions.
Our Verdict: Out at sea, whether you’re on a sailboat or a yacht, these Sperry shoes will make you feel right at home. However, if you’re looking for footwear for your next ocean angling adventure, or you’re a pro sailor, then you’ll need shoes that can provide much more protection than what these boat shoes can offer. These shoes are highly recommended for mild to moderate water and weather conditions, but they’re not the type of shoes you want to wear for pro use or intense water conditions.
Continue reading to learn how these deck shoes perform in intense water and weather conditions.
Overview and Features
Saltwater sprays the decks, the boat rocks and sways, high winds can make sailing and even walking a total challenge. For all of these reasons, you need boat shoes that will keep you firmly rooted to the deck. You need shoes that will keep you safe and allow you to confidently and easily walk around on deck. Enter the Sperry men’s Sea Kite Sports Moc deck shoes.
These shoes a built tough. Made out of a durable leather that will protect your feet from the elements, these shoes also feature a firm rubber sole that can provide all of the traction you need on deck. The soles feature a traction grip pattern that’s designed to improve your footing on slippery surfaces.
These shoes are also perfect for rocky shorelines, protecting feet from injury caused by sharp rocks and uneven terrain. As you can see, not only are they built tough, they’re also incredibly durable.
But they’re not all about functionality. In fact, they’re also very eye-catching. These shoes will work well with a variety of styles and can instantly upgrade any outfit.
These shoes were first introduced way back in the 1930s by a navy sailor named Paul Sperry. Sperry spent plenty of time at sea, where he learned firsthand how difficult it was to get around on deck without the right shoes. At one point, he fell overboard. After this event, he swore he would come up with a solution that would make it safer for the sailor to walk around deck, without the fear of falling, a solution that would provide the right type of traction and stability in such a challenging environment.
So, Sperry came up with the idea of enhancing the grip of the deck by sprinkling it with grit and repainting it. While this did help a bit in terms of improved traction, he quickly realized that a fall on this sort of surface was actually pretty painful.
His next move involved focusing on the shoes he wore. These deck shoes are designed based on the innovative ideas of Sperry all those years ago. While these shoes still feature the basic design that is totally classic and chic, they’re also made of better quality materials that make the shoes more durable and sturdy.
Sea Kite Sports Moc Performance
Lightweight, durable, and incredibly comfortable, you can rely on these shoes on deck or on the street. The shoes are equipped with non-marking soles, which is a huge plus for any yacht owner. These slip-ons are as comfortable to wear as sandals or sneakers, but they offer a sharper look that will allow you to pair them with classy, dressier clothing.
There aren’t many casual summer footwear options for men. Especially if you want to skip the socks and go with a cooler option when you’re wearing shorts.
Quality and Style
These boat shoes have been a classic look for decades. Regardless of which way fashion is swinging at the moment, these shoes have still remained relevant and can be often found both on and off deck.
While there are people who believe that boat shoes only belong on a boat, if you’re looking for versatile, durable shoes that will keep your feet dry, are highly breathable, and offer a dressy look that’s perfect for casual and dressy occasions, then you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better option than these shoes by Sperry.
In the right weather and water conditions, you won’t find a more comfortable pair of shoes to wear on deck.
These shoes consist of a moccasin-like design that’s distinguished by their handsewn construction, low cut, non-marking, non-skid rubber role, and the laces that run through just three eyelets on top of the shoe. While there are boat shoes made out of canvas, these leather shoes offer a dressier look not to mention improved durability.
On deck, these shoes are solid performers. They can handle mild to moderate weather like a champ and provide the type of grip every sailor is looking for. They can also be easily paired with a wetsuit, which will be essential in rainy weather or choppy water conditions, especially during the colder months of the year.
To learn more about leading wetsuits on the market, you can click here to check out our wetsuit buyer’s guide.
Since the shoes are made out of leather they may not be the best choice during the winter months. Leather does not dry out as quickly as synthetic materials, such as Gore-tex, which means the shoes can struggle to keep your feet warm if they’re constantly soaked. For serious sailing trips during the winter, you’ll want to opt for a pair of tougher sailing shoes, such as the Dynamic Pro II Musto Sailing Shoes, which are designed for year-round sailing.
Breaking in Your Boat Shoes
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a pair of shoes that don’t require a breaking in period, and these boat shoes are no different.
Breaking in these shoes can take a couple of weeks or as long as a month, depending on how often you wear them. When you first take these shoes out of the box, examine them and search for any hard spots in the leather. You can easily massage these spots out. If you want to speed up the breaking in process, you can try soaking them in water. Sop up excess water with a towel and them put the shoes on and wear them until they’re completely dry. By saturating the shoes in water, the fibers will stretch and then shrink to the shape of your foot as they dry.
The Right Way to Wear Your New Boat Shoes
Since they’re soft, made out of thin leather, and low cut, these shoes are perfect for warmer weather. These shoes can be paired with shorts or lightweight pants. Since the shoes will leave a large portion of your foot exposed, they won’t hold up to ice and snow, and they won’t pair well with thicker pants. Basically, these shoes aren’t the best choice for colder climates or intense winter weather.
In terms of off the boat use, these shoes are categorized as casual footwear. They can be paired with shorts, but they can also easily be worn with slacks and a lightweight blazer. They offer a nice, classic, clean look and they’re definitely a great fashion choice whether you’re on dry land or on deck.
Just remember, these types of shoes are best paired with more tailored shorts, not cargo shorts. They also work best with tapered, fitted, khakis or straight leg jeans. If you wear them with pants that are too wide they tend to look awkward.
- Made out of soft, durable leather
- Low cut for ultimate comfort
- Can be quickly and easily slipped on and off
- The tough soles offer excellent grip in wet conditions.
- Made out of leather, these shoes will not dry out as quickly as shoes made out of synthetic materials
- Not designed for offshore use
- Not a good choice for colder weather