While there are many different types of boat shoes out there that get the job done, both Sperry and LL Bean provide options that look similar on the outside but have much to compare after taking a closer look.
In this article, we will look at the differences in the Sperry boat shoes and the LL Bean boat shoes to see how they compare and which are the better option to purchase. We’re going to compare the Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoe and the LL Bean Campside Shoe.
|#1. Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoe|
Our Best Pick
|Wet/dry traction||Genuine all leather||Rubber non-marking||360-degree lacing system||Hand-sewn, Tru-Moc|
|#2. LL Bean Campside Shoe|
|Dry traction||Full grain leather||Rubber||360-degree lacing system||Hand-sewn, camp mocs|
Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoe Video Review
Comparison of Construction and Materials
Upon simple glance, both the Sperry option and the LL Bean option look entirely the same. They have almost the same construction and lacing systems on a glance. It is what is under the hood of these shoes that makes them different.
Both pairs of shoes are made from imported leather, which means they are both not entirely constructed in the USA. However, both are made with the moccasin style shoe, and they are both hand-sewn by the manufacturers.
Both shoes are made with leather, but the Sperry shoes are made with genuine leather, while the LL Bean shoes are made with a full grain leather.
The shoes each sport a lacing system with the 360-degree style, meaning that they are laced to support your feet during wear. One of the major differences in the construction of the shoes is the insoles.
The Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoe is made with an EVA heel cup that absorbs the shock when walking and provides comfort for the feet so you can wear them all day. The LL Bean Campside Shoe has a padded insole that wicks away any moisture to keep your feet dry and comfortable.
Traction, Outsoles, and Uppers
When it comes to traction, both shoes have some form of outsole traction, but this is where the Sperry brand stand out. The Sperry boat shoes have special traction that is made to hold a grip both in the dry and the wet conditions. The LL Bean shoes simply hold traction better when conditions are dry.
Both shoes have a rubber outsole that completely covers the bottom of the shoe. The Sperry’s stand out here as well since they have a special razor-cut type of outsole with wave-siping to give the shoes that traction mentioned before. The LL Bean shoes have a rubber outsole with mild traction marks.
The uppers of both shoes are spectacular. The Sperry’s have a molded heel cup that has the EVA shock absorbing option. It gives you a secure fit, but it does require breaking in. Fortunately, the LL Bean Campside Shoe has a comfortable upper that quickly conforms to the feet to give you immediate comfort. You don’t have to break them in either.
The Pricing, Color, and Sizing Options
When it comes to pricing, they are both averages for high-quality shoes. However, the LL Bean shoes are cheaper than the Sperry shoes, which might make them the better option for most people.
Choosing a color is a great way to customize your shoes. The LL Bean shoes offer two different color options, which allow you to customize your options. The Sperry’s, on the other hand, has ten different color options, giving the most possibilities.
Sizing is another thing that varies between the two brands of shoes. The Sperry shoes offer two different width options, and the LL Bean shoes do as well: a medium and wide. Both brands have several different sizes that you can choose from depending on if you purchase men’s or women’s styles.
There are still a few notable features with each set of shoes that make them great in their unique ways. Many of these features are why people love the various shoes so much.
The Sperry’s have a few things that make them stand out. First, you can fully customize your shoes from choosing the color of the leather to choosing the color of the outsole. The website gives you full options for customizing every inch of your shoes.
Another great thing about the Sperry’s is the beveled heel. These heels are made to support your while standing on a dock or boat deck, and since these shoes are made for boating, this is a feature you don’t want to go without.
There are several great things about the LL Bean shoes as well. For one, these shoes are lightweight, which is great for boating. They support lightweight and midweight socks, so your feet are tied down while wearing the shoes.
The LL Beans are also made with a conforming leather that doesn’t require breaking in. This has been mentioned already, but it is one of the outstanding things about these shoes. You can pull them right from the box and wear them for hours. They are truly comfortable right away.
The Final Verdict
While both sets of shoes have their pros and cons, like all things, there must be a winner. When you look at the various things about each shoe, only one winner can come out on top. In this case, it is the Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoe.
The LL Bean’s are incredibly comfortable, and they have plenty of support for long-term wear. These shoes are even inexpensive, making them a good option.
However, when compared to the high-quality genuine leather and fully customizable options of the Sperry’s the LL Bean Campside Shoes fall short of the mark.
The Sperry boat shoes are a bit more expensive, but their sizing and customization options are second-to-none.
These shoes are also made with the beveled heel to keep you steady on the docks and the wet/dry traction that is great for wearing around your boat. The Sperry Authentic Original Boat Shoes are the top-notch pair and the clear winner of this comparison.