There are many different colors of spinnerbait, so determining the best one can be very difficult. White, black, chartreuse, green pumpkin, there are many options. And then there are even combinations of those colors. And the spinners themselves can be painted, metallic, or a combination as well!
Thankfully, while all of these colors can work under certain conditions, I actually believe there is one best version you can purchase which will work in the majority of situations. And it’s the most simple – white with dual metallic spinners. One gold and one silver.
When to use a spinnerbait
Understanding the best color of spinnerbait requires first explaining where a spinnerbait shines. The actual “spinning” or action of a spinnerbait is created solely by the blades. They glimmer and shine as they spin in the water creating a very similar sensation as a small minnow does when it swims and turns in the water. The skirt itself exists solely to hide the hook and look natural.
For the spinners to work as they best can – you need a little bit of sunlight. The light reflecting off the metal as it moves is what makes that shimmering effect. So spinnerbaits should be reeled relatively close to the surface so that sunlight can shine and reflect off those blades. It will look like little baitfish swimming around under the water.
So knowing this, why does white become the best color? First things first, I said that spinnerbaits work best when reeled close to the surface. Predatory fish will come to the surface to feed, but very seldom stay near the surface. So when a bass or whatever you may be fishing for sees a spinner bait, it will always be looking up to it from below.
The beauty and simplicity of this is every single bait fish has a white belly. Shad, herring, even bluegill have some shades of white in their belly. So when any predatory fish is looking up for food, they’re already used to seeing white. It’s very natural and expected. You want your spinner bait to show this same color.
Secondly, we mentioned that a spinnerbaits main purpose is to reflect light and shimmer. Have you ever seen something completely black shine? No. Because black absorbs light. But will white things shine? Absolutely, white reflects all light. So again, we are best mimicking the bait that is most likely to shimmer in the sunlight.
So white is a great base color that looks natural to bass higher in the water column and reflects light well increases that shimmering effect that will get bites. You may decide to get strands of blue or chartreuse to mimic shad colors or blueback herring, but keeping the natural white color is still sure to mimic all baitfish species and create good strikes.
That explains why white works so well, but what about the metallic spinners? Why not any other metal or painted blades?
Simply put, silver shines the best in the water and gold is a close second place. But they shimmer differently, which is why the combination is so important to get the maximum effect. If you have painted blades, you won’t get the same shimmer and instead are thumping to create vibration more than shining in the water. There are other baits that will work better at that like a lipless crank bait or chatterbait. So stick with a silver and gold combination and you’ll be catching fish in no time.
When to use something other than a spinnerbait
The arguments against a white, metallic blade spinnerbait is that it won’t work as well in water that is muddy or in low light conditions. This is absolutely true, and I won’t deny it. But you shouldn’t be throwing a spinnerbait in these conditions anyways.
If you have low light conditions then you can’t get the shimmer that spinnerbaits are best used for. Instead you’re better off to use a more realistic looking bait like a swimbait or a crankbait that bass can more easily see without the sunlight shining through the water. Spinnerbaits aren’t meant to be inspected closely, which is something a predatory fish can do much easier with low light conditions.
But what about muddy water? Here you have the opposite issue. If the water is muddy, the predatory fish aren’t going to be able to see the shine and shimmer of a spinnerbait. So instead you want the vibrations that spinners can create so they can feel the bait in the water. But why settle for the low thumping vibration of a spinnerbait in these situations when you could throw a chatterbait which creates a thunderous vibration – hence its name as a vibrating jig.
So the arguments for other colored spinnerbaits are there, but I would simply argue that you should switch to another bait in those situations. When the situation is right for a spinnerbait though, white with dual metallic blades always shines. (pun intended)
So that’s why I only have one color of spinnerbait in my tackle box and why I think it’s the one you should buy. It will work in all situations where a spinnerbait is meant to work and mimics all types of baitfish that bass feed on. As you experiment more with spinnerbaits you can try some different colors as I have, but I always am using something in the white family with dual metallic blades. Because they are they best all around color combination to catch any predatory fish and I’ve never found anything that works better.
If you would like my choice for the best spinnerbait on the market, I exclusively use War Eagle Spinnerbaits. In fact, my personal best bass was caught using one and it’s my search bait of choice. But while I find War Eagle makes the best, any spinnerbait you choose will follow the guide above.