Reviewed by passionate scuba divers:

The best Scuba Fins in 2019

Z

Our experts at work

We gave our passionate scuba diving geeks a job:
Test the different Scuba Fins, swim with them, dive with them and write reviews of the best.

The result is 10 of the best Scuba Fins out there:

Torben Lonne

Scuba Diver and editor Torben is a water nut, with a passion for gear, diving and snorkeling.

Boby Taylor

Worked many years as scuba diving guide Boby has a passion for diving, and just as much snorkeling.

How divers rate us:
Scuba fins are one of the most important scuba investments you will make.

There are many options and it’s all down to personal preference. What is your swimming style? Do you want power or economy of effort?

Will you be mostly shore or boat diving? Will you be travelling with them often?

Let’s look at what to think about when choosing your fins.

Full Foot vs. open heel scuba

Full foot fins fit like a shoe. They are great if you’re looking for something for dive travel and are not shore diving. They are lighter than pocket fins and do not require booties so the energy needed to swim is reduced.

Open heel fins work with a range of foot sizes but require a bootie to be worn.

I prefer open heel fins for shore diving because you can walk out with your booties and put the fins on later. Personally, I find they are more comfortable if you are spending a lot of time in the water.
Source

Blade Style of your scuba fins

Now, what about blade style? There are a lot of options, the most common of which I’ve tried to group into categories. The best one for use depends on where you want to use it, its weight, and your swimming style.

Standard paddle fin

Your basic flat surface fin, usually with some reinforcement on the sides to keep water on the fin and provide greater strength.

Channel or Jet fins

Channel fins have different designs designed to contain water efficiently and releasing it as a focused ‘jet’. They are more popular with professional and technical divers than with novices. They tend to be heavy, which can help maintain balance if you are kneeling to teach but makes them less convenient to travel with.

They work well with various swimming styles, but I find they are the best for power when using frog kicks.

Split Fins

Split fins are inspired by fish fins, split up the middle to reduce drag. They provide better propulsion than a single blade fin with less effort. Some people find them too floppy, but it all depends on how you swim with them.

I get the most speed when using long vertical kicks. When I am guiding I can also use an unconventional horizontal side-to-side style to move slowly while not disturbing sand or silt.

Force Fins

Look a bit like a whale tail, and are supposed to provide the best power. They are light and efficient and cost an arm and a leg. Swim with a short flutter stroke for best effect.

Hinged Fins

Hinged fins have a pivot point where the foot meets the blade allowing the angle to be adjusted according to your needs. They are also useful for shore diving as the fin can be worn with the blade lifted out of the way allowing you to walk more easily.

Find a good pair of scuba fins that suites your needs

I believe that good, comfortable fins are second only to a comfortable mask when diving. They are one of the most important equipment purchases you will make.

Below you'll find our recomendations on scuba Fins 

Best beginner dive computer

Best Beginner Scuba Fins

We've gathered a selection of the best beginner scuba fins. All stable a reliable, but at a low cost.

Best Advanced Dive computer

Best Full-footed Scuba Fins

You're diving alot and you want a dive watch that meets your needs. Here's the best full-footed scuba fins.

Best technical Dive computer

Best Open-heeled Scuba Fins

Best open-heeled scuba fins needs to be durable, realiable and easy to read. Here's the best choices in the open-heeled scuba fins selections:

Best Beginner Scuba Fins

Beginner fins should be ‘fuss-free’ and easy to slip on and off. You don’t need to choose the most expensive fins available, just good, old fashioned, reliable fins that will help you to gain the experience you need over time.

Here are our recommendations on the best begginer fins

Oceanic Viper Open Heel Fins

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Oceanic Viper Open Heel Fins:

Advantages:
  • This is a great fin for beginners.
  • It comes in both full-footed and open-footed depending on your preferences.
  • This is perfect beginner fin for travelling scuba divers.
  • Efficient.
  • Extremely lightweight.
Disadvantages:
  • It's a very flexible fin
  • Make sure, if you buy the heel strap version, that you fasten them well over your foot. This will prevent them slipping off in the water.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Mares Avanti Super Channel Full Foot

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Mares Avanti Super Channel Full Foot:

Advantages:
  • This new blade design has 1 large central super channel and 2 traditional channels.
  • Provides maximum thrust, whilst maintaining efficiency.
  • Reduces leg fatigue.
  • Foot pockets have been specially designed to mould to any foot type.
Disadvantages:
  • The size of these fins can come up too big; so go for a smaller size

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Tusa Solla Full Foot Fins

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Tusa Solla Full Foot Fins:

Advantages:
  • Durable.
  • Efficient blade placement.
  • The side rails of this fin are reinforced for extra stability.
Disadvantages:
  • Some struggle with swimming on the surface, however once you’re under the water, they are perfect.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Best Full-Footed Scuba Fins

Full-footed scuba fins are ideal for the travelling scuba diver. Not only are they lightweight, they are also great for diving in warmer climates, where a sock or boot is not needed.

Here are our recommendations for the best Full Foot Fins

Cressi Reaction Pro Full Foot Fins

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Cressi Reaction Pro Full Foot Fins:

Advantages:
  • Ultra visible, brightly coloured fins.
  • Super lightweight, so easy to pack in a suitcase.
  • Worth their price.
Disadvantages:
  • Can come up quite small
  • Not great if you are swimming in smaller spaces.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Mares Volvo Race

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Mares Volvo Race:

Advantages:
  • High performance, minimal exertion ratio.
  • Has good support for the ankle to prevent tiredness when out in the water for long periods.
  • Durable construction.
Disadvantages:
  • Not as comfortable as other fins on the market.
  • Not as responsive as other full foot fins.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Aqua Lung Express Full Foot Fins

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Aqua Lung Express Full Foot Fins:

Advantages:
  • The blade of this fin is made up of 2 different materials that work perfectly to increase efficiency and flexibility.
  • Provides excellent power for scuba divers.
  • They have anti-slip pads on the base of the foot pockets, which prevents you from sliding around.
Disadvantages:
  • This is not a great fin for any other underwater sports other than scuba diving or snorkelling.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Best Open-Heeled Scuba Fins

Open-heeled scuba fins are by far the most common type of scuba fins. They are loved by all level of diver. Open heel fins are also the best use for shore diving because you can walk out with your booties on and put the fins on later. Personally, I find they are more comfortable if you are spending a lot of time in the water as well.

Here are our recommendations for the best Open-Heeled Fins

Oceanic Vortex V16 Review

Oceanic Vortex V16

We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Oceanic Vortex V16:

Our recommendations:

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Oceanic Vortex V16:

  • Advantages
  • These fins use a patented Nature’s Wing Propeller Fin Technology, for speed and agility.
  • Require little effort to move through the water.
  • Built for speed comfort and manoeuvrability.
  • Disadvantages
  • Quite heavy and bulky.
  • For some, there is a plastic ridge that sits directly on the toes; this can cause rubbing and discomfort, if the fin is not fitted properly.

ScubaPro Go Travel Fins Review

ScubaPro Go Travel Fins
We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the ScubaPro Go Travel Fins:

Our recommendations:

Advantages and Disadvantages of the ScubaPro Go Travel Fins:

  • Advantages
  • Compact and lightweight, perfect for travel.
  • They are tough and durable made of 100% Monoprene® 
  • They have a hook and hole at the tip for easy storage, great to tie up on the back of your backpack when going on a beach trip.
  • Disadvantages
  • Due to their tough nature, they can sometimes be a little hard on the foot when swimming. Meaning that they may require a shoe or boot underneath to prevent rubbing on your skin.
  • Their range of sizes usually runs quite small, if you’re planning on wearing a shoe or boot underneath, you may wish to buy a couple of sizes larger than you are.

Cressi Frog Plus

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Cressi Frog Plus:

Advantages:
  • These blades are made up of 3 different materials to make them more efficient.
  • Provide an easy and effortless kick.
  • Easy to put on and take off.
  • Comes in a range of sizes and colours.
Disadvantages:
  • Made for dive socks
  • The blades are very flexible

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Atomic Aquatics Split Fin Smoke On Water

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Atomic Aquatics Split Fin Smoke On Water:

Advantages:
  • Has a comfortable open heel foot pocket.
  • Lightweight making them ideal for travelling.
  • Has a semi open toe for extra comfort.
  • It is both flexible and rigid making it efficient.
Disadvantages:
  • Split fins is something you either like or don't. 

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Mares Avanti Quattro Plus

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Mares Avanti Quattro Plus:

Advantages:
  • This fin has 4 channels, which increases the thrusting power.
  • This foot pocket adds thrust with less exertion and therefore fatigue.
  • Made of 2 types of material for durability and efficiency.
Disadvantages:
  • These fins are quite bulky, which is not ideal for travelling.
  • Often used for rentals, so can easy be mixed up

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

Scubapro Seawing Nova

Aqua Lung Smart-Snorkel Full Face Mask

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Scubapro Seawing Nova:

Advantages:
  • Extremely comfortable foot pocket.
  • This fin has an upward directed wing tips for extra stability.
  • Has an articulated midpoint for optimum thrust.
  • Uses a bungee heel strap for a secure fit.
  • These fins have variable blade geometry. The harder you kick, the more the wing tips arc upwards streamlining the blade and increasing speed, stability and decreasing drag.
Disadvantages:
  • They are not the best for scuba divers looking for precision movements under the water.
  • These fins are at the higher end when it comes to cost.
  • They do look very different from any fin you may have seen before.

Check the price on:

Leisurepro with shipping to US and Canada
Simplyscuba with shipping to UK and EU
Amazon with shipping worldwide

This article is part of our Dive Gear Guides.

Full Face Dive Mask - Dive Computer - Dive watch - Dive Masks

Learn how to choose the right Scuba Fins for you

Choosing a fin is like choosing a new car. There are so many things to take into consideration, however choosing the prettiest most expensive fins are not necessarily the most beneficial when it comes to fins for scuba diving.

Let’s look at what to think about when choosing your fins.

Foot vs. open heel

Full foot fins fit like a shoe. They are great if you’re looking for something for dive travel and are not shore diving. They are lighter than pocket fins and do not require booties so the energy needed to swim is reduced.

Open heel fins work with a range of foot sizes but require a bootie to be worn.

I prefer open heel fins for shore diving because you can walk out with your booties and put the fins on later. Personally I find they are more comfortable if you are spending a lot of time in the water.

Full foot scuba fins
Credit: EmiDelliZuani

Buckles vs. straps

There are a few different ways open heel fins can be attached to your feet. A basic buckle lets you adjust fin tension once your foot is inside. I am not a fan of these as I find they can start to loosen after a while.

Some types of buckles have a quick release so you can adjust the fit once and then never have to change it. These are easier to put on while in the water than most full foot or basic strap fins.

Here's more on Finning Techniques – How To Get The Most Propulsion From Your Kick.

I Love my spring kit system which entirely replaces the buckle and straps originally supplied with my fins. Spring tension cannot be adjusted, so I took my fins and booties into the shop and tried several sets before I found the right size.

Now I can put my fins on in seconds and they remain comfortable and secure for my entire dive.

Fin straps closed
Credit: Torben Lonne

Blade Style

Now what about blade style? There are a lot of options, the most common of which I’ve tried to group into categories. The best one for use depends on where you want to use it, its weight, and your swimming style.

Standard paddle fin

Your basic flat surface fin, usually with some reinforcement on the sides to keep water on the fin and provide greater strength.

Channel or Jet fins

Channel fins have different designs designed to contain water efficiently and releasing it as a focused ‘jet’. They are more popular with professional and technical divers than with novices. They tend to be heavy, which can help maintain balance if you are kneeling to teach, but makes them less convenient to travel with.

Here's an Equipment Review on Turtle Fins.

They work well with various swimming styles, but I find they are the best for power when using frog kicks.

Split

Split fins are inspired by fish fins, split up the middle to reduce drag. They provide better propulsion than a single blade fin with less effort. Some people find them too floppy, but it all depends on how you swim with them.

I get the most speed when using long vertical kicks. When I am guiding I can also use an unconventional horizontal side-to-side style to move slowly while not disturbing sand or silt.

In case you disturb sand and silt, Here's How To Survive A Silt-Out.

Split type scuba fins inspired by fish fins
Credit: Torben Lonne

Force Fins

Look a bit like a whale tail, and are supposed to provide the best power. They are light and efficient and cost an arm and a leg. Swim with a short flutter stroke for best effect.

Hinged Fins

Hinged fins have a pivot point where the foot meets the blade allowing the angle to be adjusted according to your needs. They are also useful for shore diving as the fin can be worn with the blade lifted out of the way allowing you to walk more easily.

Final Thoughts

I believe that good, comfortable fins are second only to a comfortable mask when diving. They are one of the most important equipment purchases you will make.

Rented scuba fins are best for trying out - Credit: Oculo

I always recommend renting or borrowing several different kinds of dive equipment and trying it out before purchase.

Finally, always try new fins on before getting into the water and kick your foot a bit to make sure it stays on!

What kind of fin do you use? Tell us why you use this specific fin, what do you like about it? Leave a comment below!

How divers rate us:

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *