Keen Whisper Sandals Review – Are These Your Ultimate Adventure Companions?


This is our 2023 review of the one-and-only Keen Whisper sandals.

If you’ve always been on the lookout for the perfect pair of sandals that can keep up with your adventurous spirit, enter the Keen Whisper, a revelation in outdoor footwear that has made everyone fall head over heels for hiking sandals!

If you’re like me, preferring the freedom and breathability of sandals over the constraints of hiking boots, you’ll want to hear all about the Keen Whisper.


Keen Whisper Sandals Review

Let’s start talking about all the materials used in the Keen Whisper…



The Keen Whisper’s upper is constructed from durable and quick-drying polyester webbing. This material is not only tough but also resistant to wear and tear.

It can handle the abuse of rugged terrain, making the Whisper a reliable choice for outdoor enthusiasts. The Quick-dry mesh lining inside the upper ensures quick drying, which is a lifesaver when you encounter water on your hikes.





The metatomical EVA footbed is truly a standout feature. This anatomically shaped footbed enhances the overall comfort and support, which is critical for long hikes.

It cradles your feet in all the right places, reducing the risk of discomfort and blisters. The combination of the midsole and footbed is a match made in heaven for hikers seeking both cushioning and support.




Beneath your feet, the Keen Whisper boasts a comfortable midsole made of compression-molded EVA (Ethylene Vinyl Acetate). This EVA midsole is not only lightweight but also provides excellent cushioning and support.

The metatomical design of the midsole molds to the shape of your feet, offering superior arch support, making each step feel like a comfortable, customized fit.




The Whisper features a bungee lacing system that extends across the upper, ensuring a secure and customizable fit. The bungee laces are easy to adjust and cinch, allowing you to find the perfect fit for your feet.


This practical design feature helps keep your feet snugly in place during your outdoor adventures. Additionally, the laces are made from durable materials that can withstand exposure to the elements.



The Whisper’s non-marking KEEN.FUSION rubber outsole is a star player when it comes to traction and durability. The lug pattern offers an excellent grip on various terrains, making these sandals dependable on slippery rocks, muddy paths, and more.

The outsole’s rubber material is designed to withstand the test of time, making these sandals an investment for multiple hiking seasons.

Now let’s rate the Whisper’s comfort, fit, durability, traction, breathability, versatility, protection, style, and price…

Comfort & Fit (5/5)

One of the first things that struck me about the Keen Whisper sandals was the incredible comfort they offer. The metatomical EVA footbed is contoured to fit the shape of your feet, offering superb arch support, making it feel like you’re walking on clouds.

The lace-lock bungee lacing system allows for a customized and secure fit, ensuring that your feet stay snugly in place during your outdoor adventures.


Durability (5/5)

Built with an environment-ready mentality, the Keen Whisper is constructed with a combination of polyester webbing and a Quick-dry mesh lining.

This makes it both durable and quick-drying, which is essential for those unexpected river crossings and sudden rain showers. While they’re tough, they aren’t indestructible, so be mindful of rough terrain.


Traction (5/5)

Traction is a must for any hiking footwear, and the Whisper doesn’t disappoint. The non-marking rubber outsole offers excellent grip on various terrains, from rocky trails to slippery riverbeds. The lug pattern ensures stability and helps prevent slips and falls.

Breathability (5/5)

One of the standout features of the Whisper is its exceptional breathability. The Quick-dry mesh lining lets your feet breathe, and the open design allows air to flow freely. This is a lifesaver on hot summer hikes when your feet would otherwise be sweating in stuffy boots.

Versatility (4/5)

While these sandals are perfect for hiking, they’re versatile enough to handle a variety of outdoor activities. You can wear them for kayaking, casual strolls, and even as water shoes.

However, they might not be the best choice for rugged, off-trail adventures where ankle support is crucial.

Toe Protection (4/5)


Keen is renowned for its patented Toe Protection, and the Whisper is no exception. The closed-toe design wraps around the toes to shield them from rocks and other potential hazards.

It’s not as robust as the protection you’d get from the Keen Newport or hiking boots, but it does a commendable job, especially considering these are sandals.

Style (4/5)

Let’s be honest, the Keen Whisper isn’t your high-fashion statement. They have a functional, outdoorsy look, which I appreciate. They come in a variety of color options, so you can choose the one that suits your style the best.



The Keen Whisper sandals aren’t the cheapest option out there, but they are a worthwhile investment for outdoor enthusiasts. The combination of comfort, durability, and versatility makes them worth every penny.

Let’s finish things off with some pros and cons of the Keen Whisper:


  • Comfort

The metatomical EVA footbed and well-cushioned midsole provide exceptional comfort, making long hikes a pleasure.

  • Breathability

The Quick-dry mesh lining and open design ensure excellent breathability, keeping your feet cool and dry on hot days.

  • Versatility

These sandals are suitable for a wide range of outdoor activities, from hiking and water sports to casual walks.

  • Traction

The non-marking rubber outsole with a multi-directional lug pattern offers impressive traction on various terrains.

  • Customizable Fit

The bungee lacing system allows for an adjustable and secure fit, accommodating different foot shapes.

  • Toe Protection

The patented Keen Toe Protection adds an extra layer of defense for your toes against rocks and obstacles.

  • Durability

The combination of durable polyester webbing and a sturdy KEEN.FUSION rubber outsole ensures these sandals are built to last.


  • Limited Ankle Support

The open design of the Whisper sandals means they don’t provide the same level of ankle support as hiking boots, which might be a drawback for those with ankle stability concerns or when tackling very rugged terrain.

  • Style

While functional, the look of the Whisper sandals is more utilitarian than stylish. They might not be your first choice for a casual night out.

  • Price

Keen Whisper sandals are an investment, and some may find them on the expensive side for a pair of sandals. However, the durability and performance justify the cost for many outdoor enthusiasts.

  • Not for Cold Weather

These sandals are best suited for warm and moderate climates. They are not designed for cold or wet conditions.

What You Can Do in Your Whisper

In Keen Whisper, you can embark on a multitude of outdoor adventures, from hiking and trekking through rugged trails to exploring scenic landscapes. You can confidently wade through river crossings, walk along sandy shores, and navigate rocky terrain.

These versatile sandals are also the ideal choice for water-based activities, such as kayaking and rafting, thanks to their quick-drying capabilities and excellent grip on wet surfaces.

Whether it’s casual strolls through nature, camping trips, or even city exploration, Keen Whisper sandals provide the comfort and protection needed for a variety of outdoor endeavors.

What You Can’t Do in Your Whisper

While the Keen Whisper is incredibly versatile and suitable for a wide range of outdoor activities, there are certain limitations to consider.

These sandals are not designed for extreme cold weather conditions, so they may not keep your feet warm in frigid temperatures.

Additionally, they provide less ankle support compared to traditional hiking boots, which might not be ideal for those navigating very rugged terrains or needing extra ankle stability.

Keen Whisper sandals are also not a fashion-forward choice for formal occasions.

How to Wash Your Keen Whisper

The convenience and easy maintenance of Keen water sandals are simply unmatched. Unlike traditional hiking boots or shoes that can be a hassle to clean after a day of outdoor activities, Keen sandals are machine washable, making the post-adventure cleanup a breeze.

To rejuvenate your sandals, simply toss them in the washing machine with a small amount of detergent, and select the gentle cycle. This process efficiently removes accumulated dirt, grime, and odors without any fuss.

Once cleaned, all you need to do is air dry them, and they’ll be ready for your next adventure. This level of simplicity and practicality not only saves you time but also ensures that your sandals stay fresh and comfortable for many more outdoor escapades to come.

Keen Whisper vs Hiking Boots

Hiking sandals hold a unique appeal for outdoor enthusiasts because they offer several advantages over traditional hiking boots.

First and foremost, their breathability is a game-changer, especially in warm weather. Your feet stay cooler and drier, reducing the risk of blisters and discomfort.

Sandals are lightweight and provide a sense of freedom, allowing for a more natural stride and improved agility on the trail.

The versatility of hiking sandals is another notable feature – they’re not just for hiking but can be used for water activities and casual outings.

Plus, their quick-drying capabilities make them perfect for stream crossings and unexpected rain showers.

While they might not offer the same ankle support as boots, sandals like the Keen Whisper, for example, provide sufficient comfort and protection for a wide range of outdoor adventures.

Keen Whisper FAQs

Are Keen Whisper sandals comfortable?

Yes, Keen Whisper sandals are known for their exceptional comfort. They feature a metatomical EVA footbed that provides superb arch support, along with a cushioned midsole that makes them feel comfortable even during long hikes.

What is the difference between Keen Whisper and Newport?

The Keen Whisper and Keen Newport sandals share several features, such as durable construction and excellent grip. The Whisper has a women-specific fit and boasts a lighter and more open design with a webbed upper and a bungee lacing system, which enhances breathability and is perfect for warm weather. In contrast, the Newport features a more closed-toe design with a sturdy leather upper and a traditional lacing system, providing increased toe protection and making it a more rugged choice for varied terrains and conditions.

Can you wear Keen Whisper in water?

Yes, you can wear Keen Whisper sandals in the water. They are designed for water activities and have quick-drying properties, making them an excellent choice for adventures that involve wading through rivers, kayaking, or other water-based outdoor pursuits.

Do Keens have arch support?

Yes, Keen sandals, including the Keen Whisper, typically have arch support provided by their metatomical EVA footbeds, making them comfortable for extended wear during outdoor activities and foot issues like plantar fasciitis.


What socks to wear with Keen sandals?

For Keen sandals like the Keen Whisper, it’s generally best to wear moisture-wicking or quick-drying socks. Some people prefer not to wear socks with these sandals, as they are designed to be worn comfortably without socks. If you choose to wear socks, opt for those that can manage moisture well, such as lightweight, synthetic, or merino wool socks. These materials help keep your feet dry and comfortable, even during water activities or on hot days.

How do you break in Keen sandals?

Breaking in Keen sandals like the Keen Whisper is typically a straightforward process. Begin by wearing them for short periods on easy, flat terrain to allow your feet to adjust to the sandals’ feel. Gradually increase the time and terrain difficulty as your feet become accustomed to the fit. The sandals will mold to your feet with wear, providing a more custom and comfortable fit over time. While many people find Keen sandals comfortable from the start, this gradual approach can help ensure a perfect fit and prevent any discomfort during more extended outdoor activities.

In conclusion, the Keen Whisper has won people’s hearts with its comfort, breathability, and versatility. For hikers who prefer the freedom of sandals over the confinement of boots, the Whisper is an outstanding choice.

These sandals will elevate your outdoor adventures, keeping your feet happy and ready to tackle any trail or terrain. Strap them on, and let the whispers of adventure guide your every step.

I hope we’ve been successful with this Keen Whisper sandals review. Feel free to share your experience in these sandals down below in the comments.

Until the, stay safe out there and see you in the next one 🙂 

About Eric Barber

Eric Barber is a happy father of two little angels, a husband, and a runner. He eats, sleeps, and dreams anything foot related: running shoes, walking shoes, sneakers, you name it. It all started when Eric was a shoe store specialist watching and fitting people's feet day in and day out.

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