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Barbless Hooks for Fishing - Top 10 Review

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Barbless Hooks for Fishing Vs. Barbed Fishing Hooks

There are several choices you can make as an angler that will keep fish alive for Catch And Release Fishing.  One of these choices is whether to use a barbed hook or a Barbless Hook.  There are advantages and disadvantages to each option. The effectiveness of barbless hooks is largely dependent upon your skill level using barbless hooks.  In the end, it will be your decision if barbless hooks are the right choice for you. 

I know from decades of experience the damage that a barbed hook can do.  If the fish swallows the hook, you will not get it out without doing some serious damage.  Even if the fish is hooked in the lip, you may kill the fish just trying to get your hook free.  Barbless hooks penetrate much easier and require far less force, so because of that they will do minor damage to fish, so they are more likely to survive once set free.  In this article, we will cover both sides of the argument so you can make a more informed decision.

What is a barbless hook?

A barbless hook is a type of hook that does not have a barb. 

What is the barb of a fishing hook?

The barb, also known as the hook’s barb or barbule, is found on the point of a fishing hook. The barb is a small, sharp protrusion that helps keep the fish on the hook. It also makes it more difficult for the fish to escape.

Why Use Barbless Hooks for Fishing?

It’s simple, really. A barbed hook is designed to rip into a fishes mouth and not come out from the thrashing and fight during reel in. This often leaves gaping holes in the fish’s mouth and can cause permanent damage to vital organs.

A barbed hook that finds itself stuck in a gill or eye socket can almost guarantee the fish will be handicapped and can even lead to death. Barbless fishing hooks are the humane way to catch fish that you do not plan on keeping for food. They lack the opposite direction spike that prevents the hook from sliding out normally, resulting in an easier time getting the fish off the hook and back into the water safely without causing permanent damage.

Many places require the use of barbless hooks when fishing for selective species or if the intention is not to be kept for food. We have compiled a list of great barbless hooks that we recommend using during your next fishing adventure.

There is a lesser likelihood for you to be injured when you use barbless trout hooks. The experience of being injured by a barbed hook is painful; hence the use of barbless trout hooks for a lovelier fly fishing experience.

We shall highlight the ten best barbless trout hooks and list each of them’ pros and cons. We shall also give a brief description of the best ten barbless trout hooks available on Amazon.

1. Gamakatsu Octopus Barbless Hooks for Fishing

Gamakatsu Octopus Barbless Hook​

The Octopus Barbless Hooks from Gamakatsu are crafted fully from forged steel and feature a backwards facing eye. Available in a range of sizes, these octopus style barbless hooks are perfect for using cut up pieces of live bait in both saltwater and freshwater. The simplistic yet effective design of octopus hooks combined with the off-set razor sharp point ensures a quick-hook set while preventing the fish from falling off during the fight. Coming in a pack of 25, the Octopus Barbless Hooks from Gamakatsu are a great bang-for-your-buck purchase for any avid angler.

2. Owner American Hangnail Point Barbless Hooks for Fishing

When you want to be absolutely confident you will not lose that fish of a lifetime, Owner American has got you covered. Their new Hangnail Point Octopus Hooks virtually eliminate the need for barbs while still ensuring a speedy catch & release. Unlike other styles of barbless hooks, these feature an immaculately sharpened tip facing 90 degrees away from the curve with a backwards facing eyelet. These two features alone greatly minimize the risk of losing your fish after a hefty hookset. While these hooks are only offered in packs of 7, you may want to get yourself a couple packs when gearing up for a fishing trip.

3. SILANON Circle Curve Barbless Hooks for Fishing

Continuing the theme of a curved shank style barbless hook, SILANON offers both quality and value. SILANON is well known within the fishing community for providing anglers with high quality hooks that are completely corrosion resistant crafted fully from steel. The wide curve of these circle hooks prevent the fish from shaking the hook loose, despite lacking barbs. Whether you prefer to use live bait or various soft plastics; SILANON offers the perfect size options for both. Coming packs of either 125 or 200 hooks, you will have ample opportunity to catch a fish of a lifetime without having to worry about running out of barbless hooks.

4. Mustad Classic Barbless Hooks for Fishing

When you want a treble-quality hook up ratio without using a treble hook, Mustad offers the Barbless Beak Hook. The beak style tip is in line with the eye of the hook to provide maximum power and efficiency during every hook set. Mustad is well known for their Nor-Tempering technology for maximum durability while remaining lightweight. The shape and ensign of these barbless hooks push the fish into the elbow of the hook making it almost impossible for the fish to throw the hook from its mouth. Crafted fully from steel and available in packs of 10 in multiple sizes, you can feel confident Mustad has thought of everything

5. AGOOL Carp Fishing Barbless Hooks for Fishing

Coming from the world renowned team at AGOOL, these unique barbless carp hooks are chemically sharpened to provide an amazingly sharp point that can penetrate even the boniest of fish’s mouths. The hook point on these barbless hooks bent back towards the eye of the hook to guarantee throughout all the thrashing, your fish will stay hooked up. These barbless hooks from AGOOL are available in a range of sizes and in either 50 piece or 150 piece sets to keep you fishing all day. Additionally, these barbless hooks feature a wide eye to allow the use of heavier lines than other styles of hooks. Topped off with a black finish over the entire carbon steel construction, these barbless hooks offer a low-profile when submerged in water resulting in more strikes.

6. Owner American No Escape Barbless Hooks for Fishing

As discussed before, many areas require the use of barbless hooks when fishing for species that are susceptible to irreversible damage done by classic barbed hooks. Owner American saw a market for this in salmon heavy areas and developed their line of No Escape Barbless Hooks. These needle point hooks are crafted fully from chrome for maximum durability and in place of a barb to secure fish on the hook, they have added a low-profile “V” notch right below the tip. This acts as a securing groove to keep the fish from sliding off the hook, a common fear of fishermen who want to make the transition to barbless hook fishing. The hook point is turned straight back towards the straightened out eyelet so during reel in, there is virtually no way for the fish to come unhooked but will slide out with ease once the fish has been landed. Available in a range of sizes and packs of at least 22, you can feel confident you will have everything you need for a long fishing excursion.

7. Mustad KVD Elite Triple Grip Treble Barbless Hooks for Fishing

For anglers that prefer to use lures and other artificial baits such as spinner baits, Mustad has you covered. The KVD Elite Triple Grip Barbless Treble Hooks stand out from the rest for a magnitude of reasons, making it the preferred choice by countess fishing enthusiasts. These hooks are wide set for an unmatched hook-up ratio while minimizing the risk of the fish throwing the hook during a long battle. Forged from high quality steel and Nor-Tempered wire, you never have to worry about broken tips or bent hooks. Available in a range of sizes, Mustad offers the perfect option for both saltwater and freshwater fishing. The only downside we see for these hooks is the price for quantity ratio, as these hooks come in a pack of 6 so choose wisely how you wish to use them!

By the way, you might want to check our Treble Hook Size Chart comprehensive guide to choosing the one that fit your needs

8. Gamakatsu Big River Barbless Hooks for Fishing

Where some may see barbless hooks as a risk of being less effective, Gamakatsu saw a chance for innovation. They took the original barbless hook design, and added multiple kinks along the construction acting as a “natural barb” which prevents fish from sliding off the hook without actually causing any additional harm to the fish. This style of hook is perfect for using live worms or minnows as they will not fall off as frequently as other styles of hooks, giving fish more time to bite. Along with the unique design, these barbless hooks are fitted with an impressively sharp off-set point for lightning quick hook-sets; be careful when handling them! Coming in a pack of 25, these Big River Barbless Hooks are reasonably priced for the craftsmanship and overall effectiveness that they offer out on the water.

9. Dyxssm Barbless Hooks for Fishing & Leader Set

For live bait fishermen and women out there, Dyxssm has come up with an ethical barbless hook option for snell rig lovers! These rigs feature two high quality steel hooks connected together to a single tie loop with extremely strong carbon steel wire. This allows you to double down on live bait and increase your chances of getting a strike! Integrated roller swivels keep your line away from the hooks during casting, greatly reducing the risk of a tangled up rig. As the size of the hooks increase, the leader size and test increase to follow suit. Dyxssm packs these rigs into sets of 8 to keep your tackle box full throughout the season.

10. MajicHook Easy Catch & Release Barbless Hooks for Fishing

The research and design team over at Majic Hook came up with a way to make catch and release fishing even easier while protecting the fish even better. These steel hooks feature an additional eyelet in which a second shorter piece of line is tied onto to give leverage lower on the hook and closer to the fish’s mouth. This allows the angler to put less stress onto the fish’s mouth and reduce tearing or hurting the fish further. A curved needle point tip combined with rib like indentations along the curve offer fast hook sets while providing a non-slip texture without actually causing any additional damage. In theory, these Easy Catch & Release Barbless Fishing Hooks from Majic Hook would eliminate the need to take the fish out of the water at all or even touch them with your hand. As we know, these two processes alone can pose risks to certain species of fish so for the environmentally friendly angler these are a must have.

Barbless hooks for bass

Gamakatsu Barbless Octopus Hook

There are plenty of fishing hooks types you can use for bass: Aberdeen hook, Worm hook, Octopus hook, Treble hook, Circle hook, Siwash hook, Kahle hook, Bait Hook, Wide Gap Hook, and more.

Among them, you can find a barbless version from top brands like Gamakatsu, Owner American, SILANON, and more.

Because bass hooks range from a small #8 to a large 8/0, we recommend the Gamakatsu Barbless Octopus Hook size 1 that would work well both for the small and largemouth bass, peacock, and even stripe bass.

Barbless trout hooks

BASSDASH Barbless Fly Hooks

We have a separate barbless trout hooks review, and if you force us to choose one it would be the BASSDASH Barbless Fly Fishing Hooks kit that contains 11 barbless fly patterns.

What is the Barbless Hooks for Fishing Standard?

Barbed hooks are and have always been the standard in the fishing industry.  Many anglers don’t even know that barbless hooks exist.  The barb is the sharp piece of metal pointing in the opposite direction of the hook point.  This is what prevents the hook from coming loose once it is set.  The intention is to hook the fish in the lip.  Even with a barb, this does very little damage to the mouth of the fish.  However, the time it takes to remove a barbed hook could very well kill the fish. 

Fish have a mucus membrane on their scales that keeps them healthy.  Any time that membrane is disturbed, it hurts the fish.  Just holding the fish out of the water for a few minutes could potentially kill it.  What’s worse, if the hook is swallowed you have almost no chance of retrieving the hook.  If you are responsible, you will just cut off the hook and set the fish free.  Unfortunately, most anglers just grab it and start pulling.  The standard for fishing is pretty barbaric.


Are barbless hooks less effective?

In one word- No.

However, barbless hooks require a better angling technique. When you use a barbless hook, you must ease your nerves when a fish is hooked and maintain the line tight without trying to speed up the reeling.

Barbless hooks FAQs, tips, and how-to’s

Barbless hooks have been a controversial topic among anglers for decades. Some love them, some hate them and others don’t really care either way as long as they catch fish. Barbless hooks come in all shapes and sizes from tiny trout flies to giant trebles used on saltwater lures. There are many benefits to using barbless fishing hooks but there is also a lot of misinformation about their use that can lead to frustration when you try to learn how to tie your own or purchase the right ones for your needs. This article will cover everything you need to know about barbless fishing hook use including what styles work best for different species, which brands produce high-quality barbless hooks, and where you can find good deals online if you decide this is the right choice for you.

What are barbless hooks?

A barbless fishing hook is just that, a hook with the barbs ground down so they cannot catch on skin or cause entanglement. It might sound simple enough but what you probably didn’t know is there are actually several different kinds of hooks. There are “straight gape” hooks that have no offset between where the shank ends and the point begins, which will allow the line to lay very flat on the hook. There are also “offset” hooks that have an angled shank but still no barbs. These will let the line lay fairly flat as well and should be used where sharp angles are present or other conditions that could catch the line if it is laid too flat.

What do barbless fishing hooks look like?

Barbless hooks look like any other hook but if you look closely you might notice the barb is ground down at an angle to make it even less likely to catch on anything. Barbless hooks come in all sizes and styles from tiny “tippets” used for catching trout, to huge trebles like those found on plug fishing lures.

Are barbless hooks better?

The hooks are better when you care for the fish’s health and practice catch and release fishing. Barbless hooks are less likely to cause injury to fish when they are removed from their mouth so you can practice catch and release more without worrying about the fish you caught being in pain or injured.


Are barbless hooks better for fish?

They cause less damage to the fish’s mouth, which means you may be more inclined to practice catch and release. Barbless hooks are easier to remove from fish, which means they will be less likely to hurt the fish when removing them.


How to make hooks barbless?

They are very easy to create on your own. Barbless hooks can be made with a pair of pliers or if you want to get really fancy, some fine-grit sandpaper wrapped around the tip of a screwdriver will do just as well. Barbless hooks can also be purchased pre-ground for convenience.

Why Vote for Barbless Hooks for Fishing?

Of course, the obvious reason for barbless fishing hooks is to make catch and release fishing easier and less stressful on the fish.  This helps preserve fish populations so you can continue to enjoy your favorite fishing spots.

However, there are other advantages.  Hooks with barbs are a bit fatter at the point.  This makes hook penetration more difficult.  You will actually get a better hook set with barbless fishing hooks because they are thinner and penetrate easier. 

If you don’t believe me, try it yourself.  Take a piece of fabric or paper and push a barbed hook through.  Then try the same thing with a barbless fishing hook.  The barbless option will penetrate easier.  If you set your hook right, the fish will actually be less likely to get free. 

The only real advantage to barbed hooks is that they will stay in the fish better if the hook was poorly set.

Barbless Hooks for Fishing Keep You Safe

Believe it or not, those little hooks can actually be a major safety hazard.  Have you ever seen someone get a barbed hook stuck in their skin?  It is a mess.  The more you pull on the hook, the more damage it does.  In most cases, barbed hooks must be pushed through the flesh and out the other side so you can cut off the barb and remove the hook.

I have tried to emphasize this with my seven-year-old son.  He loves going fishing, and I just now am trusting him with hooks.  I must constantly stay on him to be careful when he casts. 

 We typically eat what we catch, so normally we have barbed hooks.  However, when we go trophy fishing we switch it up to barbless fishing hooks.  Remember, emergency rooms are full right now.  In most cases, a barbed hook stuck in your skin requires a trip to the ER to remove it.

Do you lose more fish with barbless hooks?

This all comes down to your skill as an angler.  If you set your hooks poorly or you allow too much slack in your line, a barbless hook can be a problem.  These are the times that a fish might get free without that barb.  If you are fishing for food, the barb may be the way to go.  However, with some practice, you can adapt your fishing strategy to accommodate barbless fishing hooks.

When you set your hook, be patient.  When you feel a fish on your line, give it a second.  Wait until you can feel the weight of the fish pulling your line in a specific direction.  When you set the hook, pull up.  Do not jerk the rod.  Raise it straight up and then start reeling.

As you are reeling, maintain tension on the line at all times.  If the fish runs towards you, reel in as fast as you can to keep up with the fish.  If the fish heads to the surface to jump, grab the line with your hand to maintain pressure.  Keep that hook in its place until you net your fish. 


How do you keep a fish on a barbless hook?

You need to give the fish the opportunity to fully hook onto the line, and then steadily reel in the line.

Are barbless hooks better for trout?

Absolutely 100% yes. Barbless fishing hooks create a better release that doesn’t harm the trout’s mouth.

Where are barbless hooks required?

According to easternsierrafishreports.com, barbless hooks are commonly used in coastal areas where species such as steelhead migrate upriver. Barbless hooks are intended to preserve trout, salmon, and sturgeon further north.


Barbless Octopus Hook

There are more types of barbless hooks along to the circle ones. One of them is the Barbless Octopus Hook. It has a single, straight shank that is without any barbs. The Barbless Octopus Hooks are ideal for almost any fish species, including bass, salmon, crappie, and more. Having said that, for trout you’ll want to use the barbless circle hook. The barbless octopus hook is made of high carbon steel and comes in multiple sizes allowing anglers to choose the most suitable size according to what they are trying to catch.


How do you remove barbs from circle hooks?

Use needle-nose pliers to grab the barb and then bend it down towards the shank of the hook. Once bent, slowly back away until it breaks off close to the sheath of the eyelet; this will prevent damage to your line or hands.


Do you have to use barbless hooks in Florida? *

According to floridagofishing.com “All boats fishing in federal waters must employ venting and dehooking equipment and non-stainless steel circle hooks when using natural baits to decrease reef fish mortality, including snapper, grouper, and Goliath grouper.”

If you read it carefully, they didn’t mention BARBLESS circle hook but regular circle hooks.


Barbless circle hooks for trout

Barbless circle hooks are perfect and somewhat necessary when trout fishing. We have a Trout hook size chart where you can find all types of hooks for trout fishing, and barbless circle hook shows up often. The size of a barbless circle hook for trout depends on the bait you are using and ranges from the small #20 for wet flies to the bigger (but still small) #10 for spinning.


Barbless circle hooks for salmon

Barbless circle hooks would work great for salmon. While fishing hooks for salmon ranged from #1 to 10/0, when it comes to barbless circle hooks for salmon we recommend using 2/0 – 4/0 size hook.

These type of hooks also don’t cause damage in the mouth like barbed ones do, which is better since you want your catch and release the fish back into its environment unharmed.


Gamakatsu barbless circle hooks

If you’re looking to buy barbless circle hooks, Gamakatsu barbless circle hooks would probably be your top choice. They are very high quality hooks that can be used for fishing, but they also work well with tying flies.

– Gamakatsu is a Japanese company based in Osaka, Japan.

– The company was founded in 1947, and is still family owned. As a result it has been able to focus on quality control from the very beginning.

– They are most known for their fishing hooks but they also produce a wide range of other products such as swivels, lures, jigs and more. One of their most popular products are the Gamakatsu octopus hooks.

Conclution - Use Barbless Hooks for Fishing

We vote for Barbless Hooks for Fishing!


Because we vote for life, and we’re not alone. Many anglers practice catch and release fishing, which means that they do try to return the fish to its habitat. Unfortunately, many of them still lack the knowhow, and unaware that the fish they released didn’t survive due to mistreatment, and barbed hooks are by far the deadliest and biggest mistake.

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