What Fishing Line to use?

As a fisherman, there is a good chance that you have choices to make regarding your fishing line? Perhaps you have difficulties, your lines breaking while you were reeling a catch or casting your favorite lure. Having a faulty fishing line may not be the whole reason. 

These events may reinforce the fact that you need to change your fishing line or use the wrong type. The question now is – What fishing line to use?

Like the lure and rod and reel, fishing lines are one of the components necessary for any angler’s success. It doesn’t matter if you’re catching bluegill from the bank, flipping bass out of thick grass, or trolling offshore for sailfish. You need the excellent quality and right type of line to land fish and have a hassle-free time. 

With hundreds of different fishing lines on the market, what types, what sizes, what diameters should you use? It’s about the most difficult choice for most anglers.

So we were going to break down all the different fishing lines reasonably according to their uses, faults, and certain types of fishing best suited for each style.

It’s in the little details

Identifying the target species, fishing style, habitat, lures, and baits, and the angler’s skill all have a bearing in choosing the best line for the job.

From trolling spoons for oversized pike and steelhead; to deep jigging lead heads for walleyes and smallmouths; to working topwater frogs or spinner-baits for bass; there’s a specific kind of line to help anglers get the best results.

There are four significant types of fishing lines on the market today that matter for all practical purposes. Each has its pros (strengths) and cons (weaknesses), and anglers love each type. 

99.9% of the anglers, when starting, only understand the difference in the packaging and color of the line. Braid, fluorocarbon, and monofilament mean nothing to them. We want to share what the pros already know about the fishing line and how they choose the different types. Share the cons no one wants to talk about and the pros of why you should be using it. You will know the perfect fishing line to use when selecting your favorite lure. Additionally, plan on fighting your favorite fish species by article end.

Variety of fishing line to use

All Fishing Lines have Personalities

Before we start suggesting different products on the market, there are a few personalities of each line to go over. Later in the article, this will help you understand why one line might be not as good as another in your current situation.

  • Abrasion Proof: Ever have a fish cut the line with his teeth? Maybe your favorite fishing spot has lots of rocks, and you get cut off all the time? Having a line that is more abrasion-resistant will help. Or, more importantly, make sure you are not using a fishing line that is not abrasion-resistant.
  • Buoyancy: This is how your line floats in the water or how quickly it may sink. Different situations are going to call for a specific fishing line. The more buoyant the line is, the better it will work for topwater lures. Lik that sinking provides a better feel of the fishing lure or bite of a fish. It also helps with the hooking of fish in some cases.
  • Memory: This happens to some types of lines when it gets old or is stored in the sunlight. When you cast, and your line lies in the water, is it straight or curled up? That’s memory. A fishing line with lots of memory will also get kinks or knots as you reel cast and retrieve. The biggest problem that occurs from the fishing line with lots of memory is losing all your casting distance.
  • Strength: It comes in all types and forms of fishing line. Strength should not be only the breaking point. The most critical factor to consider regarding power is the diameter of the fishing line. Not all fishing lines are equally treated when looking just at diameter vs. strength. There is a time when stability is more important than the diameter, and the diameter is more important than power.
  • Stretch: Is the distance the line with giving before breaking. The stretchy line is vital for certain fish and lures. In some cases, it helps with fighting a fish; other times, like with crankbaits, it gives the fish time to inhale the bait before you can react. Typically, the stretchy line also provides less sensitivity to the lure and bite of a fish.
  • Visibility: This should be a given; fish can see line color. The fishing line’s specific colors work better in different color water, other fishing techniques, and various fish species. Spooking of fish because of line color is one of the number of mistakes beginners make in choosing a line.


Okay, now that we understand the fishing line’s personalities, let’s deep dive into the types of lines on the market today!

Monofilament: The Old Reliable

Since I can remember, monofilament has been the standard line for catching bluegill or Blue Marlin worldwide. Even today, the retail stores are full of inexpensive fishing lines, which is monofilament. It’s an excellent value for anglers; it works, catches fish, and casts well initially. It can be used on any style fishing reel, is easy to work with, and has good knot strength.

Monofilament fishing line - The Old Reliable

Pros of Monofilament

Monofilament is known for its reliability. It stretches under pressure; it’s durable and forgiving in the same breathe. The bulk of the fish landed in the world happen on monofilament. Some Monos are a bit stretchy; they still provide a right hook to drive hooks deep in to fish. Unlike its sister line fluorocarbon, monofilament is more forgiving and softer. It is helping with abrasions from rocks, fish teeth, and others. Think of mono as the old reliable; when you need a line you can rely on for almost all fishing forms, she won’t let you down.

Because it’s softer and more flexible than fluorocarbon, knots tie easier with mono, and cutting the line with almost anything, including your teeth, works for a Mono connection. Monofilament is exceptional for line sizes smaller than 12 pounds. It’s easy to cast lighter lures and adaptable for any terminal tackle, such as snaps, hooks, sinkers, bobbers, and swivels.

Cons of Monofilament

Monofilament is the line with the most stretch. It can be a fault or an asset for anglers. It provides less sensitivity than the fluorocarbon line, which can lead to anglers’ loss of fish as some anglers have difficulty detecting light strikes. Stretch also requires anglers to set the hook harder to drive deeply into the fish’s mouth.

The monofilament fishing line’s main fault is the memory, which creates loops, knocks, and twists, causing multiple casting issues. Monofilament can be especially tricky with lures that spin the line, like that happens when trolling. Twisting is caused by not adequately using leaders and swivels to decrease line twists.

Cons of Monofilament fishing line

How And Why Anglers Use Mono

There are many monofilament applications, and since it’s been around for decades, many top anglers are committed to it, like a veteran fishing guide, Capt John Leech, of Kissimmee, Florida.

“I use Trilene XL monofilament line the most it’s what I feel like I get the most bites on,” he says. “Yes, still use braid and fluorocarbon with no-fault, braid has many advantages in thick covers, such as no stretch, incredible strength, solid hooksets, lots more sensitivity, longer life spam on the reel. And use monofilament because it works on sunny days, cloudy days, and all days in between. I have just always had confidence in it, so if it’s not broken, why change.”

Capt John also commented that monofilament is much cheap when your fishing every day as he does. It’s smooth, and it makes it easier to tie knots quickly.

Florida fishing guide Capt Al out of new Smyrna Beach uses limp monofilament leaders when he uses live bait, especially when bobber fishing with a slip-float rig.

For Saltwater fishing trout and redfish, it mostly uses monofilament.

“Being able to see my line is important so a hi-vis Mono is a majority what I use. And so fish won’t see or shy from it, I always employ a fluorocarbon leader.” My preferred monofilament is Berkley Trilene Big Game for trout and redfish; both are smooth casting.

Copolymer: A Basic Improvement

Attempt to make improvements to monofilament; the industry created a copolymer fishing line. It’s a newer version of the version of monofilament, with slite changes. They embedded a different cord of nylon, making it two or stains of material instead of one. This process strengths the line reduces stretch and, more importantly, provides manufacturers access to create a unique recipe and customize the line’s characteristics to specific types of fishing.