2023 Solite Custom Surf Boots Review

2023 Solite Custom Surf Boots Review

Many surf brands make a variety of different products to meet consumer needs. However, Solite is a key example of a company specializing in just a couple of areas: surf booties and gloves. Solite was started about five years ago by two lifelong surfers, one of which spent the majority of his career in the snowboard industry. The brand is unique in that the booties are the first-ever surf boots that can be custom fitted through heat molding. Historically, heat-moldable soles have revolutionized the ski/snowboard industry by adding comfort and enhancing performance.

“Solite is a detail-oriented company and deserves credit for the masterpieces they have created. With their specialization in boots and gloves, you’re receiving top-of-the-line, high-performance technology.”

Highlights and Features

  • Heat moldable booties
  • Warm heat-booster socks
  • One-piece sole design
  • Durable overkill seams

Below, we’ll review the updated line of Solite booties. In addition, we’ve provided a step-by-step guide of the heat molding process along with a temperature thickness guide. Let’s take a closer look at these one-of-a-kind surf booties.

Solite Booties

Solite Custom Pro Booties with heat socks

New 2.0 Tech

Solite’s products have been thoroughly tested and refined, resulting in one of the world's best-performing surf booties. New for the 2022-2023 year, Solite made several updates with their 2.0 tech, which is at the forefront of boot design. The key updates include a 3-D Molded Natural Rubber Sole, Thermofoam with internal Micro Split, and a Reinforced Stealth-Loop, which we’ll discuss more below. The Pro models also received an extra update with the Thermal Rebound plush neoprene lining. With the strategic updates, Solite improved warmth, durability, and traction, making their reputable boots even more high-performance.

What's the difference between the Solite Custom and Custom Pro?

The Solite Custom Pro has a few extra features, like a strap that runs over the top of the foot, internal tape on the seams, and an altered cuff fit that is narrower than most booties but exceptionally watertight. The most significant difference is that Custom Pros have a different liner called Hollow Fiber (the yellowish fuzzy material). This liner is quick-drying, which is excellent since the inside of booties is notorious for drying slowly.

Custom Pro vs. Custom Booties

Fit and Cut

Solite recommends that you size down if in between sizes, as the booties will conform to your foot through the heat molding process. A little snug or tight is better than too big. If you’re a men’s 10 ½ street shoe, go with a size 10 in Solites. If you’re an 11, you should stick with a size 11 bootie.

The booties are offered in unisex sizing. For the best women’s fit, size down a full size from your normal street shoe. For example, a women’s street shoe 8 or 8.5 would go down to a size 7 bootie.

The material that makes up the internal split-toe divider is redesigned. It now is a much smaller divider that allows the booties to fit a broader range of foot/toe shapes. This slight change may initially feel odd if you’ve worn earlier models. With time and use, we’ve found Solite booties still function and perform exceptionally for high-level surfing.

Entry - On and Off

Wetsuit booties can be a struggle to take on and off. After a hard day of work, the last thing you need is to struggle when putting on your boots. If you’re a surfer, you can relate to the anticipation of sighting waves to surfing waves.

Solite integrated a Stealth Loop on the booties’ heel for ease of putting on and taking off. The loop is laminated between the neoprene and a co-molded rubber/textile heel reinforcement patch, providing incredible durability and pull strength. It also is Tatex-coated for extra strength and zero-water absorption.

EZ-O cuff, another feature offered in 2.0 tech, includes a sizeable O-ring panel for ease of entry and exit. The feature lives up to its name and makes a noticeable difference in my experience. Lastly, the booties also include a seamless seal that is double-lined for durability.

Heal Pull Tab on the Solite Booties


The current Solite booties are the result of over five years of research, development, and testing in the harshest cold water conditions around the world. With the material, construction, and custom fit, Solite simply outperforms competitors. The Thermafoam 2.0 sole and Overkill seams offer top-of-the-line warmth, while the 3-D 2.0 sole and Floating D-Rings provide optimal flex. The updated booties will help you perform your best no matter what conditions mother nature provides.

Overall, Solite booties have some of the best foot-to-board feel. The response from foot to board is critical when performing maneuvers. The Tatex Heel Spine makes a significant difference from competitor brands since it locks in your foot while maintaining comfort.

Boot Thickness Temperature Guide

Finding the correct boot thickness is key to being comfortable in the water. Ask yourself, where will I be using these boots? What is the average water temperature? How long do I plan to be in the water? Your answers will help you narrow down what thickness is best for you.

In addition, every pair of Solite booties, regardless of thickness, size, or model, comes with a set of knit heat booster socks. Throw on the socks to help with the heat molding process, or layer them with the booties for extra warmth while out in the water.

Below are the recommended thicknesses for Solite boot models based on water temperature.

Solite 3mm Custom 2.0 50F+ / 10C+
Solite 5mm Custom 2.0 45F+ / 7C+
Solite 8mm Custom 2.0 32F+ / 0C+

How to Heat Mold the Boots

Heat molding these booties is super easy. If you've ever heat molded a mouthguard before, it's not very different. Basically, it breaks down like this…

  • Throw a tea kettle filled with water on a stove. While waiting for it to boil, put your booties in a sink with the cuff rolled down.
  • Once the tea kettle goes off, pour the boiling water into the booties. Only pour up to the brim of the moldable material. You don’t want to fill it to the top where the neoprene is.
  • After 5 minutes, pour the water out, let the booties sit for a moment, and quickly rinse the inside of the booties with cold water. (This will prevent you from getting burned or having the booties be uncomfortably hot while setting the mold.)
  • Put on the heat booster socks (these will help with the molding) and slide your feet into the booties while sitting upright in a chair.
  • Once the booties are on, feel free to walk around. After 5 minutes, the booties should be molded and ready to go. This process can be done over and over, so down the line, if you ever want to change the fit of the booties, you’d just repeat these steps.

Customer Feedback

“These are the most comfortable boots I've ever worn. Living in the Northeast, I've tried every brand (Ripcurl, Oneill, Exel), and Solite are as close as you can get to going barefoot. The rubber is very flexible, and at least for me, there was a learning curve on how to take them on and off. After that, no problem. Most importantly, I don't notice they are even on when I surf. Use the socks that come with them; helps get them on and off.”

- SG

“Feels amazing you really feel that board!!!”

- Siul

Final Thoughts

With a price tag noticeably more expensive than competitors, it is easy to question if Solite booties are worth the cost. Simply put: yes. Solite is a detail-oriented company and deserves credit for the masterpieces they have created. With their specialization in boots and gloves, you’re receiving top-of-the-line, high-performance technology.

The materials and technology used by Solite create one of the best-performing surf booties of all time. With a molded custom-fit sole, the boots excel in comfortability. Offered in various thicknesses from 3mm to 8mm, there’s a model for everyone to meet consumer needs. Additionally, Solite booties are designed to fit both men and women. If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line performing surf bootie with the ability for customization, look no further.

If you have any questions about Solite surf booties, leave a comment below, call us at 1-888-546-6176 or email us at support@cleanlinesurf.com. See’ya in the water.