Types of Fishing Lures [Ultimate Guide]

Anglers, both experienced and beginner, agree that the best way to catch fish is to use something that attracts them. Traditional fishers used live bait such as worms and small baitfish, but this was more time-consuming.

It was also expensive as live baits are perishable, meaning that one had to fetch a new one before setting off for fishing.

Today we have an artificial lure that is much more effective, easy to find, and reusable. Manufacturers design these lures to mimic real-life fish food, not just in looks but also in movement.

The problem is that there are so many types, and choosing the ideal choice may become a challenge. This article will help you understand the best fishing lures in detail.

Different Types of Fishing Lures

Different Types of Fishing Lures

Spoon Lures

Spoons, in fishing, are metal lures that are a bit less round and a little elongated than the typical teaspoon. Spoon lures get their name from the fact that they resemble cutlery except with handles cut off. They come in a wide range of colors and sizes and often come with a ready-installed hook, making them straightforward to use.

The concave shape allows the lure to shine and wobble as they penetrate the waters; a bigger curve provides a wider wobble. A wobbling lure mimics an injured prey, providing a chance that any predator looks for.  The spoon lure size you pick should be the same size (or come close) to the fish your target fish hunts.

These lures are effective whether you use them on fishing lines in a lake or drag them during trolling. You can use spoon lures to target various fish; you just have to get the season, time of the year, and size right.


This is the best choice for fly fishing. Unlike most lures, artificial flies do not imitate fish; instead, they resemble flies or small insects, as the name suggests. There are also countless patterns and designs of these lures globally. Modern fly lures feature some newly developed materials that make them usable in spin fishing as well.

Fly fishing lures have two parts, a single hook, and a skirt. Manufacturers use furs, threads, and feathers to mimic real-life insects, flies, and crustaceans.

Some anglers consider fly fishing to be a form of art because they find fly tying to be a bit challenging. But, this is always an immersive and addictive practice once you figure out how to do it. 

There are two types of flies, subsurface or wet flies, and surface flies. The former sink below the water’s surface to mimic aquatic insects and minnows, while the latter are waterproof and float on top of the water.

You can always choose either depending on the fish you target to catch. However, it is important to note that fly lures work better with fish that swim close to the surface.


A jig is a multi-part lure with a lead weight sinker and a hook hidden in its soft rubber or silicone material body. The lead sinker helps the baits go deep into the water while the skirt camouflages the jig and disguises it as fish food.

Jigs also come with an additional fibrous guard that protects them from getting stuck in underwater objects such as weeds. 

Jig fishing is one of the most rewarding types of bass fishing available. This is because jigs invite big bass to bite more than most other fishing lures. Jigs are also effective year-round, and you can use them anywhere on a water body. The only problem is that beginners may find it a bit difficult to master.

There are several fishing jigs, so you might choose the best one according to your circumstances. The most common type is the Arkie jig, mostly known as flipping or casting jigs- they are multipurpose and suited for almost all fishing techniques.

For best results, cast your jig to the bottom until the line goes slack. That’s how you know it sunk. You must also understand the jigging practice; lifting the rod slightly and then retrieving the line back and forth.


Spinnerbaits get their names from their metal blades that spin or roll in water to initiate vibration and varying flash.

They are the best lure for beginners because they do not require any specific technique. They are relatively cheaper than other options. However, beginner anglers may find it difficult to determine what to look for spinner considering the range and numerous types available.

Spinners come with hooks dressed in skirts and sometimes bug tails to attract fish. Some manufacturers add scents for extra attraction. When you drag your spinner on the water surface, the blade rolls, displacing water and creating a commotion.

These baits are most popular among anglers hunting predatory fish such as pike, bass, and pike. The loud thump and their shape, plus their flashy color, almost annoy the bigger predatory fish into striking. They also make ideal search baits excellent to use when fishing in new waters.

The two most common spinnerbaits are safety pins and inline spinnerbaits. You may also come across the thirty types called tail spinners. The weight in your spinnerbait may also determine the type of fish you can catch-they weigh between 1/8 and 2 ounces. Lighter spinners are excellent in ponds, while heavier lures are best for luring fish in deeper waters like oceans and lakes.

Soft Plastic Lures

Also known as plastic baits, these lures are flexible soft rubber-made baits that mimic various aquatic critters. They can imitate anything from worms, minnows, crawfish, lizards, and even from. The lures are common in bass fishing and are an excellent choice for almost any water environment.

Most plastic lures are simple, with weighted hooks (jig heads) positioned inside the body with only the hook protruding. Like spinner and jigs, you can either retrieve your plastic bait by reel or jigging (pulling and releasing the line to imitate small fish movement). There is also a lighter option for those who want to do surface fishing.

Before going fishing with your plastic lure, ensure that you pick the right size and color. The color you choose should fish naturally in the specific fishing environment.

The design allows soft plastic baits to run on a single hook, but they are among the most versatile baits option. Just like worms, these lures will attract all types of fish, but a bit of sophistication is necessary if you want to get bigger fish.

 These baits make natural movements in the same direction as the current flow to appear as an easy meal for hungry fish in water.

Plastic baits are a lot cheaper to produce and an effective way to imitate real-life prey. You can also use them in live bait rings. It cuts costs and can be a good place for beginners to perfect their trade.

Crankbaits or Plugs

Plugs are arguably one of the most popular hard-bodied lures in tackle boxes globally. They have solid bodies made of hard materials like wood and plastic, molded to form fish baits.  Crankbaits often have two or three treble hooks attached to these bodies.

These lures also have hard plastic lips attached to their noses. The lips help them make the diving motion as you drag or rip them in water. The rule of thumb here is larger lips make bigger dives. So this is one factor that determines your fishing depth.

You can always use smaller Crankbaits to catch big fish. But larger plugs work better in that situation. Some Crankbaits have rattles that irritate fish and encourage aggressive bites.

The only problem with the Crankbaits is that they do not have any covers for the hooks. Unlike jigs, they get stuck a lot in weed. They are not a perfect pick to use when targeting fish at the bottom of a water body.

There are several types of plug baits depending on color, design, size, and shape. The most common types are poppers and jerk baits.

What Fish Can You Catch With Lures?

You can catch any fish with lures depending on the design, size, and dive. Most fishing lures can only target a specific group of fish species. For instance, fish lures designed for trout will differ from those designed to lure pelagic fish.

You only need to understand what food your target fish eats and what features attract them with lures. Knowing this will decide whether you make a kill or go home empty-handed.

How Do You Know What Lure To Use?

When buying a lure, the size and weight and sometimes the prey they mimic will determine what you can catch with them. Tackle manufacturers often indicate the type of fish you can target with their lures.

For example, lighter lures are perfect for calmer conditions and for fish that swim close to the surface. On the other hand, heavier lures are perfect for stronger currents on windy days and fishing deep into the water body.

Another factor to consider is the lure color. Bright-colored lures are great in muddy or murky water but not in crystal clear waters as they may spook fish. Picking a lure with some rattle can also play a significant role when targeting aggressive predatory types like perch.

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