Fishing Lures: Types and Tips on Choosing the Right Lure


Lures come in a many different types, sizes, and brands, so it can be quite difficult for a novice to decide which one to choose.  It’s important, of course, to know the right one to use in order to make that fishing trip a successful and memorable one.

What is a lure?

A fishing lure is a kind of bait that is used to attract fish and entice them to bite.  Primarily, it uses color, movement, and vibrations to get the fish’s attention and, when the fish moves in to attack what it thinks is prey, it can be caught onto the hook or hooks that the lure is equipped with.  A lure can also be used to attract fish that a person intends to spear or catch with their hands.

Lures can either be handmade or bought commercially, and may be made of plastic, cork, wood, rubber, or metal.  Some have other materials attached to them like feathers, tinsel, and so on, and may be designed to have some moving parts.  Lures are often designed to look like the fish’s natural food, with some resembling injured or dying prey.  There are also others that are meant to rouse the fish’s sense of aggression, curiosity, or protectiveness of its territory.

Lures are usually used with a fishing rod and reel, which experienced anglers are able to handle to catch even elusive prey.

What are the different types of lures?

There are different kinds of lures, including artificial flies, fish decoy, jig, LED lures, plugs, spinnerbait, spoon lures,  swimbait, among others, each having its own advantages and disadvantages.  The pros and cons, of course, depend on what type of fish you’re trying to catch – certain fish may ignore some lures and get attracted to others – and the water and weather conditions on the day of fishing.

Rather than going into detail, it would help to first find out the broad types of lures, and which one would be effective for the activity you plan on doing.  These are:

  • Surface Lures


As the name suggests, this type of lure stays afloat and can also be dragged along the water’s surface.  It makes some kind of sound, like splashing or burbling noises, that mimics those of prey trying to flee or one that is injured.  It is good for attracting fish that lie in wait for their quarry to swim by or those that normally rush from the bottom to catch their food.  The lure usually entices predatory fish go topside, something that thrill-seekers enjoy since are able to witness their game taking the bait.

  • Sinking Lures


This type goes down into the water.  If you’re trying to execute vertical fishing or your bait near the surface is not attracting fish, then you may need to let it sink near the bottom.

Sinking lures are more effective if you use a thin line so it won’t have a belly when in the water.  Movement on your line usually means that something has taken the bait, so it’s important to keep your guard up while holding the rod and keeping an eye out for a possible catch.

  • Soft Plastic Lures


As the name suggests, these are made of soft plastic in various colors and may look like fish prey like worms, squid, lizards, leeches, and more.  They appear to be swimming when pulled along the water.

For this to be most effective, you need to find out first what type of fish live in the location where you intend to do your angling.  This way, you will be able to prepare just the right lure that resembles their natural prey’s look and swimming style.

As a tip, it is best to use the lightest jighead as much as possible.  A jig is a kind of lure that is made of a lead sinker with a hook, and this part is often enveloped with a soft body.  You can have the plastic lure sink faster even if you’re using a light jighead by using a fine line.

Have your lure swim just below the level where the fish are.  You can also have it go back and forth on the water’s surface first, going lower as it does so, and then going deeper to the level you’re trying to reach.

Soft plastic lures are the best option for those who are just starting.

  • Floating and Diving Lures


This category includes many different kinds of lures, but they all generally give you more control.  With this, you can start from the surface and go down as quickly or as slowly as you want.  You can make it drift, keep still, or move a bit, as well as navigate it through obstacles underwater.  This, in turn, allows you to reach the places where fish normally hide.  Moreover, these lures can be used in varying water conditions, whether it’s in relatively still waters like a lake or in places with more rugged currents like the sea.

Before selecting the type of floating and diving lure, it’s best to first know where you will be fishing and how deep the waters are.  This way, you will be able to purchase a lure with a diving depth that matches your requirements.  Also, it’s advised to keep a number of them for different water depths.

Having an idea on the broad types, you can now move on and delve deeper into finding out the specific types of lure that are available to you.  You need to consider the time of year because fish could be near the surface, the sub-surface, or deep underwater, depending on the season.  Also, if there are weeds, you may want to consider using a weed guard to keep your hooks from snagging.  There are also different lure sizes, from 1 inch to 12 inches, so you need to determine what type of fish you’re aiming for.  Compare them to see which one would work best for your next fishing trip.

Of course, it’s always best to gain experience in order to learn how the different types or lures respond to the water, how you can control them, how the fish react, and how they affect your angling.  Try out different types and have fun learning!