You may never be able to drive the ball like Rory McIlroy or any of the top top pros but there's no reason why you can't learn to putt like them, so long as you have the best putter for your game. During a round of golf you will reach for the putter far more often than any other club in the bag. Indeed, the easiest way to shave shots off your handicap is by sharpening up around the greens and reducing the number of putts it takes to get the ball in the hole.
There is no magic formula for this. It comes down to a lot of practice and, just as importantly, finding a putter that feels comfortable and suits your eye. If you want more top quality additions to your clubbing arsenal, try our guide to the best driver. We also have so many more guides – best golf ball, best golf bag, best gifts for golfers, and that's just the start of it. But for now, we are putting on the ritz, with the best putters for players of all levels.
The best putters our golf experts have tried
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The ‘Spider’ isn’t a new design. It’s been around for a few years in various guises but it is still as good as anything out there.
Along with the original Ping Anser and Odyssey 2-Ball the TaylorMade Spider is one of the most iconic putter designs that changed the game and inspired a whole host of copycat models from other manufacturers.
The ‘X’ and the numerous variations of it is perhaps currently the most popular version of the Spider and it can be found in the bags of some of the world’s top golfers, such as Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Matthew Wolff.
The ‘Spider’ design has proved to be so successful because the weights in the toe and heel at the rear of the putter provide balance and make it more forgiving when you don’t strike the ball in the centre of the putter face. Be aware, however, while the Spider is very forgiving it won’t work miracles. If you hit your putt off centre the Spider will limit the damage more than many other putters but you will hole less putts.
The key to good putting is still practice, practice, practice.
The Scotty Cameron brand is the Rolex of putters. They’re expensive, not necessarily because they do a better job than their competitors (if that was the case every top player would use one, right?), but because they look stunning and they’re generally regarded as being the epitome of cool.
A “Scotty” is more than just a putter; it’s a statement. In some ways it’s as much a fashion accessory as it is a golf club. The craftsmanship and overall look screams out ‘luxury’ as they’re made from premium materials and even the grip looks stylish.
As you’d expect the price reflects that. Some models will set you back a couple of grand as they are often released as limited editions. Even the head covers are collectibles!
Generally though there isn’t THAT much difference between your standard Scotty Cameron and similar premium putters from the likes of TaylorMade, Odyssey and Ping for example. While it might seem like a lot of money for a putter, it’s cheap compared to what people will readily pay for a new driver.
But this brand didn’t become so popular just because they look nice. They perform just as well as any of their competitors. Need proof? Tiger Woods has used a Scotty Cameron Newport 2 (or variations of it) for most of his career, which is about as ringing an endorsement as it’s possible to have.
The Newport 2 has weights in both heel and toe to help with balance and forgiveness and there is a really soft feel when the ball comes off the face.
If you aren’t good on the greens this won’t make you suddenly start holing putts, but at least you’ll look cool while you’re missing them.
Wilson Staff have not been big players in the putter market for some time but the Staff Model range represents a change in direction for the brand. It’s a premium offering that matches up well with the most popular putter brands such as Odyssey, Ping, TaylorMade and Scotty Cameron.
Mmilled from a solid block of ultra-soft 304 stainless steel, these Staff Model putters are quite stunning to look at and give off a real air of luxury
There are four putters in the range. The BL22 is an Anser style blade, the TM22 is a fang shaped mallet, while the 8802 is a modern take on one of the most iconic putters in the history of golf, designed by Arnold Palmer and used by the great man in the early 1960s when he was a Wilson player.
The MT22 is the best option for the average golfer as it provides a little more forgiveness on heel and toe strikes.
Blade putters are not known for their forgiveness and tend to be more suited to the better calibre of golfer. The Odyssey Tri-Hot 5K family is a different animal though. From the front and back it looks like a blade, but when you look down on it the extra width gives you the reassurance you only get with a mallet.
Featuring interchangeable front weights and the legendary Odyssey white hot face insert, this putter delivers the kind of performance and forgiveness that you don't usually see in a blade.
Odyssey is the clear number one putter brand on the PGA Tour but the good news is they aren’t the most expensive. Sure, they aren’t exactly cheap, but the pricing is certainly reasonable for what you are getting.
Cobra haven't always been in the conversation when it comes to the best putters but they've upped their game considerably in the last couple of years and the introduction of 3D printing is certainly intriguing.
There are a variety of putters in Cobra's 3D range so there is something for everyone, but we particularly like the fang shaped SuperNova design.
What is 3D printing? Well Cobra describe it as a nylon lattice cartridge insert that promotes a high MOI (forgiveness). It works, because this putter is certainly one of the more forgiving you will find and that makes it an ideal choice for those who struggle on the greens.
The SuperNova has plenty of alignment aids, great forgiveness and it really promotes confidence when you look down on the ball at address. You feel like you can't possibly hit a bad putt with this thing, although obviously that's not the case. Having confidence certainly helps though and the SuperNova does inspire confidence when you're standing over those nervy four footers.
Wilson’s ‘Infinite’ range of putters have the look and feel that you’ll often find at the high end of the market but at a much more affordable price.
A double milled face promotes consistent impact, roll and distance control while the counterbalanced technology moves the balance point closer to the hands for a smoother, more controlled putting stroke.
Visually they look great as the ultra dark PVD finish reduces glare and accentuates sight lines. The oversized grip provides a stable feel and limits rotation during the putting stroke.
We’ve chosen ‘the L’ design but if the mallet style putter isn’t for you, the Infinite range features various other designs, all named after a local landmark or neighbourhood in Chicago, where Wilson’s company headquarters is located.
In total there are eight classic head shapes including different blade options, so Wilson have all bases covered.
For decades anyone who was anyone had a Ping putter in the bag but times change and they were left behind for a while. Ping were the number one name in putting but now they’re just one of many looking for a slice of the pie. That’s due to the increased standard of competition rather than any drop off in what Ping are producing.
You really cant go wrong with any of the Sigma, Vault or Heppler range. We especially like the Heppler Tomcat 14 though as it looks great and performs really well. The shaft length is adjustable and the stylish black and copper head features a 14-dot alignment aid inspired by the lights on an airport runway.
The Stroke Lab Triple Track series of putters from Odyssey come in nine widely varying designs but the stand out model for us is the iconic “2-Ball”, which has taken alignment to a whole new level.
The original 2-Ball design was groundbreaking when it first hit the market but Odyssey have now combined that winning formula with “triple track” which makes it easier than ever before to ensure your putts are lined up correctly, especially when used in tandem with the “triple track” Callaway golf ball.
When you match up the lines on the ball with those on the putter it’s virtually impossible to not be lined up correctly. Even if you’re one degree off it will stand out a mile and you’ll be able to adjust.
There is plenty of tech on show here as you’d expect from Odyssey. The Microhinge Star Insert provides a firmer feel and enhanced sound at impact, while Stroke Lab Weighting means the shaft is 40 grams lighter and that weight is distributed to the head and grip end of the putter. This promotes improved tempo and consistency.
Mizuno are not renowned for their putters but the M-Craft range offer premium performance in a striking finish. Available in blade or mallet design and in a variety of finishes, we prefer the Ion Blue option as it looks so high end it could be a Scotty Cameron.
Featuring a milled face an forged from mild carbon steel, Mizuno claim the M-Craft 3 will give you a softer feel and pure roll.
It is fitted with 8-gram weights in the heel and toe but you also get two 3-gram and 13-gram weights which allows you to adjust to a variety of putting conditions.
The M-Craft series all comes with a premium quality Mizuno head cover.
This thing looks like something Darth Vader might fly in, which will be massively appealing to some and an extreme turn off to others.
There’s a reason for how it looks though as this putter is designed to provide maximum consistency regardless of the quality of strike.
The ball comes off the face somewhat slower in comparison to a lot of other putters but there is a greater consistency with off centre strikes, which makes this an option for anyone who is a little inconsistent on the greens.
The two long sight-lines help with alignment while the stealth black shaft just looks really cool. It doesn’t come cheap though.
If you are new to the game you may not want to spend big on a putter, at least not to begin with. Sure, you could pay upwards of £500 for a custom fitted L.A.B. putter but chances are your putting stroke and stance will evolve the more you play, so you’re probably throwing your money away.
Going down the second hand route on eBay is a good option, but the downside to that is you don’t get to try before you buy.
Slazenger golf clubs are incredibly cheap to the point where many people naturally assume they must be pretty rubbish. They aren’t, they represent excellent value for money and the putters are no different. You can pick up the V300 putters for as little as £13.99.
Of course they aren’t as forgiving as the top end putters from the ‘name’ golf brands. They don’t have too much in the way of tech or perimeter weighting in the heel or toe to ensure off centre strikes still reach the intended target.
That isn’t necessarily a bad thing for someone just starting out though as it promotes good habits. You need to hit your putts in the centre of the putter and when you do the Slazenger putter will do the job just fine.
As with many of the budget putters out there, the Slazenger D300 models imitate some of the higher end models, in this case the Odyssey ‘Two Ball’ and ‘Fang’ designs.
A brand you may not be familiar with but that is well known within the professional game after the late great Payne Stewart used a SeeMore FGP blade to win the 1999 US Open. Zach Johnson then added to the brand's reputation by winning the 2007 Masters and then the 2015 Open at St Andrews while using the same style of putter.
The FGP is available in blade and mallet form and both are perfect for golfers who typically enjoy blades or small mallets. The mallet is probably slightly more beneficial to most golfers as it's that bit more forgiving.
SeeMore's patented RifleScope Technology (RST) Alignment System makes it very simple to align the face correctly, while this putter is face balanced at impact or balanced to plane, meaning it's dynamically balanced to the angle you putt and naturally returns to square at impact.
If you don’t want to spend big on a putter or perhaps you already have but are looking for a second option to occasionally mix things up, the Roll-Face 3 from Teardrop could be just what you need.
Milled from 303 stainless steel, the Roll Face technology is designed to get the ball rolling more quickly than standard designs and to cut out the initial ‘hop’ that you get with many putters.
A lot of tech has gone into the design and it even comes with a high quality head cover. It’s terrific value at under £50.
How to buy the best golf putter for you
Putters come in all shapes and sizes and what feels right to some golfers will not necessarily feel right to you. Every golfer has different needs, especially when it comes to putters.
Choosing the right putter is not an easy task as there are so many to choose from in various styles and price ranges. Expensive does not always mean better but you will find that the top of the range models will be more forgiving due to the amount of technology and research that goes into the design.
Most golf retail outlets will have a putting facility that you can take advantage of, or if you're buying from your local pro shop ask if you can take a few different putters onto the practice green. If you're making a significant investment you don't want to rush into it blindly and buy the first one you see.
When you see one you fancy, don't be shy, ask to try it out. And we can't stress this enough, take your time. Compare it with other putters and keep in mind that feel is almost as important as results. You might be making more putts with one particular model, but if it doesn't feel comfortable in your hands then that success probably won't last, especially when you get onto an actual golf course and the pressure cranks up.
When you find 'the one', you'll know. It will sit just right when you address the ball. You'll love the feel of it. The balance and weight will be spot on and more often than not you'll be finding the sweet spot.
The worst thing you can do is buy something that doesn't feel comfortable and tell yourself "It will be fine when l get used to it". No, it won't!
Also, don't buy something just because your friend has one, or because you've seen your favourite golfer holing putt after putt with it on TV. Test it out first, and sure, if you're lucky it might be the one for you. Just don't buy before you try, as you'll almost certainly regret it.
Our best piece of advice would be to test out putters any time you have the opportunity, regardless of whether you are looking to buy or not. Even if you're not in the market for one right now, you will be one day so it makes sense to at least have some idea of what you like.
Any time you're in the golf shop and you have time to spare, take yourself over to the putters and knock a few balls in the hole. See what's new, what suits your eye. Find out what feels good. By doing this you'll be in a position to take advantage of any online offers that might come up in the future.
So without further ado, here’s our comprehensive guide to the best putters currently on the market.
Oh, and while you're here, you might want to check out our guide to the best drivers and best golf shoes too, as well as finding out more about the best golf watches and best golf bags.