Best Surfing Fins for 2024: Speed, Twins, Quads, Small Waves & More

Daniel Lofaso

Choosing the best surfing fins can be a confusing process. There are numerous models under each brand, with different constructions and shapes to consider while honing in on the best fins for the type of surfing you want to do.

While the best option is to have a few sets of fins at your disposal, I’m here to help you buy the next perfect set of fins and make the process simple. Note that I’ll provide recommendations for both FCS and Futures, as those are the two most common fin brands in surfing. 

Related: Surfboard Fins: Ultimate Guide to Types, Materials & Sizes

How We Choose Surfing Fins

Me and the SwellSpy team test different fins all the time. We all have our favorites and try our friends' fins to see if we like them as much as they do. I also have surfboards with both FCS and Futures fins setups so I have multiple sets of fins from both brands. With about 20 years of surfing experience to lean on, I’ve also looked at reviews from around the web to determine what fins are the most popular right now.

Best Surfing Fins Quick Picks

Best overall fins:

FCS: FCS II Performer PC Carbon

Futures: John John Florence Techflex

Best surfboard fins for speed:

FCS: FCS II Reactor PC Carbon

Futures: F8 Blackstix

Best fins for a fish/twin surfboard:

FCS: FCS II Mark Richards Twin + Stabilizer 

Futures: Machado Keel

Best quads: 

FCS: FCS II Rob Machado Seaside Quads

Futures: Controller Alpha

Best small wave fins:

FCS: FCS II PC Kolohe Andino

Futures: Machado Pivot

View Fins by Brand



Best FCS Fins for Surfing

Our pick for

Best Overall Fins

FCS II Performer PC Carbon

FCS’ best-selling fin at the time of writing, the Performer PC Carbon is a balanced fin ideal for multiple conditions, which is perfect for the surfer who wants one fin for all types of waves. Multiple reviewers claim these are the best fins they’d ever used, with exceptional hold and drive. 



Great hold, drive, and control

Versatile option for all sorts of waves


Better suited for intermediate to advanced surfers

Our pick for

Best Fins for Speed

FCS II Reactor PC Carbon

Designed with hauling ass in mind, the Reactor family of fins is ideal for speedy, in-the-pocket surfing and quick snaps. If changing directions is your norm, this more upright template is going to allow you to surf a little more progressively than other fin models due to its flex properties. Ideal for hollow waves or punchy beach breaks. 


Smaller center fin great for tail release

Very snappy and fun in rippable waves


Lack versatility in all-around conditions

Our pick for

Best Fins for a Fish/Twin

FCS II Mark Richards Twin + Stabilizer

I like these MR twins because they come with the stabilizer fin for those of you who want to play around with a smaller center fin and don’t fully want to commit to twin fin surfing. MR is the inventor of the twin fin so it’s only appropriate that his name is on the best-selling twin fin that FCS makes. Ideal for fish, funboards, or twins, this fin will provide great speed and glide right over those flat sections for cruisy, fun sessions.


Loose but not too loose where you lose control

Fun color options


A bit on the pricey side

Our pick for

Best Quad Fins

FCS II Rob Machado Seaside Quads

Leave it to Machado for having two sets of fins make our list. This time it’s for the Seaside Quad Fins that are designed specifically for his Firewire Seaside model. I’ve tried these fins on other boards, and while they work great on all sorts of equipment, they are definitely better-suited to fish surfboards. 


Keel and stabilizer make for an interesting quad setup

You can surf the front fins just as twins


Not suitable for a lot of different wave types other than smaller waves

Our pick for

Best Small Wave Fins

FCS II PC Kolohe Andino

I’ve found that signature fins generally are made to represent the surfing of the pro that you associate them with. In this case with Kolohe, it’s airs, explosive in the pocket surfing, and quick twitch maneuvers. FCS says these fins are made for going fast and surfing explosively, things that I think are the goals of most small wave surfers.


Neutral, do-anything fins

Makes high-performance boards perform at their peak


May not be suited for non high-performance surfboards

Best Futures Fins for Surfing

Our pick for

Best Overall Fins


From $130.00

on Jacks Surfboards

From $75.00 (Alpha fins)

John John Florence Techflex

A responsive fin suited for those that want to surf like world champ John John Florence. These fins are made for power surfing but have construction that includes a honeycomb core and carbon that makes them very light and springy. The fin template is neutral, meaning it is an all-around fin ideal for lots of different wave types.


Super drivey fin

Engaging and predictable 


Not ideal for weaker waves

Our pick for

Best Fins for Speed

F8 Blackstix

The Blackstix are the fin of choice in our Sharpeye 72 Inferno review as the board suits itself to smaller waves as do these speed-generating fins. The fins come in a neutral template, making them good for all conditions including beach, point, or reef breaks. 


Generate tons of speed in small waves

Great for power surfing


Not ideal when the surf gets big

Our pick for

Best Fins for a Fish/Twin

Machado Keel

A modern take on the more retro keel fin, these are ideal for surfers looking for a nice glide and effortless speed generation. The fins are big, providing lots of drive and hold but making it a bit more challenging to do in the pocket surfing (unless you are Rob Machado, of course).


Instantly transform your surfing into cruisy twin fin elegance

Psychedelic color options


Not great for pocket surfing

Our pick for

Best Quad Fins

Controller Alpha

I like these fins for my quads with a wider tail such as the Firewire Sweet Potato where flying down the line is priority number 1. The fins have a modern keel up front with a more upright back fin, making them incredibly skatey but with the hold that you’d expect from a quad.


Skatey like a thruster but in a quad

Made in the eco-friendly Alpha construction


Best reserved for wide tail fish boards

Our pick for

Best Small Wave Fins

Machado Pivot

Ok, so I lied. Machado is actually featured here three times. This is, in part, because he spends a lot of time working on equipment and is an icon in the surfing world. Machado, like Kolohe, is also known for surfing small waves like the ones at Seaside Reef in SoCal near his home. 


Fast like a twin but with the stability of a thruster

My in-the-pocket go-to fin


Only come in large (by design)

Surfing Fins Buying Guide

The primary things to consider when choosing fins are the following:

  1. The fin system you use – FCS or Futures are the most common options.
  2. The appropriate fin size for your weight – Fin manufacturers will provide fin size recommendations on their websites based on weight.
  3. Thruster, twin, or quad setup – Whether you need a traditional three-fin, twin or a four fin setup.
  4. Fin material – Selecting a fin from the composite, fiberglass, or carbon families or some blend that influences the waves you’ll be surfing most.

Learn more about all things fins in our Ultimate Guide to Surfboard Fins

Surfing Fins FAQ

How much do surfing fins cost?

Fins can cost as little as $65 for a set all the way up to $140. Factors that influence the cost are brand, material, if you are getting thrusters, twins, or quads, and novelty of technology.

What are the different kinds of surfboard fins?

The most common fins are thrusters, or a three-fin setup followed by twins or quads. The primary brands that sell fins are FCS and Futures.

What are the best surfing fins for beginners?

The best surfing fins for beginners are ones that are made from flexible, softer materials with a softer edge. Traditional fins are made out of fiberglass or composite materials that do have the possibility of injury. 

What size fins should I get for my surfboard?

Fin manufacturers generally recommend fin sizes based on the rider weight. A general rule of thumb is large fins for over 176 lbs, medium fins for 144 to 175 lbs, and small fins for under 143 lbs.

Rake, Neutral, or Pivot Fins. Which should I get?

Rake fins are designed for longer, drawn-out turns. Think surfing J-Bay or some other awesome pointbreak. Pivot fins are great for snaps and vertical surfing. Think Trestles or your favorite beach break.Neutral fins are in between. If you are going to get one pair of fins, get neutrals.

Most or all of the products featured in our reviews are from affiliate partners who compensate us if you make a purchase on their sites. While this may influence the products we review, we do provide candid evaluations and only recommend products we genuinely like.