5 advice
Which climbing shoes are the best is a very personal choice. As all peoples foot shapes are different you need to take into account the arch type, comparative length of toes, width of foot, angle of the heel, what level they climb at, whether the person likes climbing with socks, if someone climbs indoor or outdoor, what type of rock, their preferred climbing style and whether or not they take their shoes off after each route. As you can see when it comes to what climbing shoe is best the answer is whats best for each climber. This is why Simond create a number of different climbing shoes at each level, with different fits and different properties to cater to all types and abilities of climber.
Climbing shoes are not strictly necessary but not wearing them will hinder you ability to climb. Climbing shoes a very different to any other shoes. They are made to provide extra grip onto rock surfaces, not just of the soles but on the edges, heel and toe of the foot is well. Climbing shoes also fit very differently to other footwear as they a made to have no extra space around your foot which allows you to get more power from you entire foot while allowing you to 'feel' the rock beneath you. In contrast to climbing shoes regular shoes don't do any of the above, if they did they would be very painful to walk around on day to day.
The best climbing shoes for beginners are ones that are flat soled and not very asymmetrical. This is because climbing shoes that are cambered and very asymmetrical can become very uncomfortable as they force the foot into a different position; this provides better precision and power but only if the technique is good. Beginner climbers who aren't use to the feel of climbing shoes and will be using larger holds won't get any benefit from a more advanced shoe and possibly find them painful.
It's personal preference whether you wear socks or not with your climbing shoes. When Bouldering indoor's many people don't wear socks but this can make the climbing shoes smell. Outdoors people generally wear socks more. If the rock is wet many people recommend wearing thick woolly socks over your climbing shoes to get some grip.