The best men’s sneakers are the MVP of everyday footwear. It doesn’t matter if you’re focused on athletic performance, all-day comfort, or keeping up with the latest trends — there’s a perfect pair of men’s sneakers (or more likely, multiple pairs) for everyone.
But that’s largely due to the plethora of options and subcategories offered today. Once a word associated with sports, sneakers now trace the boundaries of all menswear, showing up at the office, on the red carpet, at even at weddings in ways that look very intentional and very trend-setting. The mass acceptance of sneakers is due in-part today’s more easygoing social environments, a side effect of the global pandemic, notes menswear stylist Cassandra Sethi of Next Level Wardrobe.
How to Wear Men’s Sneakers
Sneakers have become appropriate for situations beyond the gym. But there’s still a time and a place to rock certain styles. Take the modern office, for example. In a work environment, particularly those with casual or business casual dress codes (or even no dress code) have seen one of the largest wardrobe shifts of all.
In most offices, “it’s best to go with a traditional low sneaker—no high-tops—with those dress codes,” Sethi tells Men’s Journal.
Sethi also notes that many brands are moving beyond the classic white leather sneaker and embracing a color palette that includes shades like gray, brown, black, and navy — plus distinctive materials like suede.
“If you already have white sneakers, then your next purchase should be one of those options, and they’re appropriate for many work scenarios,” she says.
When choosing men’s casual sneakers, Sethi suggests sticking to an option in a lighter shade. She’s outfitting clients this season in tan and taupe sneakers to “give their outfit a little bit of pop without looking like they’re trying too hard or trying to match everyone else,” she says.
Sounds like solid advice to us. But with the sneaker market so oversaturated, tracking down a pair that matches your vibe can be overwhelming. To simplify your search, we’ve highlighted a wide range of stylish and comfortable men’s sneakers in this guide. Our picks include models from popular brands like Adidas and Vans as well as smaller designers like Koio and Taft. Here’s what to consider for your next pair of men’s sneakers.
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The Best Men’s Sneakers of 2023
From Keds to Adidas Stan Smiths, there’s a long history of tennis shoes stepping off the court and onto the street. On’s collaboration with tennis legend Roger Federer is suited to serving balls as well as killer looks. The trendy men’s sneakers are made from synthetic leather and feature the brand’s signature CloudTec in the sole for comfort and energy return. Grab it in one of three subtle colorways.
There’s no shortage of high-tops on the market, but this premium suede pair from Cariuma—an eco-friendly Brazilian shoemaker—might just be our new favorite. The OCA High pairs a luxe suede upper with a memory foam insole so you can hit the town with a touch of class and comfort.
Borrowing from the iconic look of the Vans Old Skool, the company’s UltraRange EXO men’s sneakers boast laidback style and all-day comfort. The latest version comes with a comfortable UltraCush midsole and a full rubber outsole for an all-terrain grip. Vans is leaning into this style very hard right now, and for good reason — it’s one of the best they’ve put out in years.
Greats makes the perfect minimalist sneakers that won’t break the bank. That doesn’t mean they’re cheap, but the sub $200 sneakers are cut from leather or suede and handmade in Portugal for a final product that’s worth the cost. The Royale is their signature shoe and their best sneaker for men. For the 2.0 version, they didn’t mess with perfection, but they did subtly tweak it. The fit is more ergonomic, while the signature side panel is tapered rather than parallel, giving the shoes a slightly sportier look.
Step in and head out with these slip-on Madrid Eco-Knit sneakers from Kizik. In addition to the convenience of not having to mess around with laces, the stretchy knit upper and high-density foam insoles provide a comfortable ride for quick jaunts outside, around town, or out with friends.
In our story on the best walking shoes, Brooks sneakers were cited by podiatrist Dr. Mark Mendeszoon, D.P.M. as one of the best options for everyday wear. Whether you’re setting a PR or just taking the dog for a walk, Brooks’ Adrenaline sneakers are a comfortable option. The supportive shoes are great for overpronation. Brooks’ Addiction is a comparable style if you prefer a neutral running shoe.
[From $97; amazon.com]
One of the lightest shoes you’ll ever own, the Hey Dude Wally has been rising up the ranks as one of the best sneakers for men. The attraction isn’t just how free-floating they feel, it’s also the ease of use. Not only are they very easy to slip on and off, but they’re very flexible, which, when combined with the lightweight factor, makes them a great footwear option to pack for trips even in the most cramped of spaces. The Wally comes in dozens of colors and fabrics, some of which are even fleece-lined for colder months.
Classic Adidas sneakers are having a moment, and while Sambas have blown up in popularity, the Gazelle is an equally classic style from the Three Stripes brand. Designed as a versatile shoe for training and handball (a goal-based game that’s popular in Europe — think soccer with your hands), the Gazelle’s retro-sporty look makes it ideal for everyday wear. The suede construction sets it apart from standard leather and canvas.
The chunky-soled New Balance 550 is perhaps more on-trend than ever, and its throwback design is ready to be paired with joggers or even tan chinos. This type of sneaker rivals a Nike Air Force 1 with its court-inspired silhouette but boasts the comfort technology that made New Balance a household name.
Veja sneakers seem to be everywhere lately. It’s easy to see why: These stylish kicks combine a retro court sneaker design and a clever, minimalist pop of color on the brand’s distinctive “V” logo.
White sneakers for men take priority on the “sneakers to own” list, but to mix things up, opt for something a bit bolder and more refined, like this rich, deep brown leather men’s sneaker from Koio. You can even dress these up with a breezy navy cotton suit. They look similar to the Common Projects Achilles sneakers but cost a lot less — that’s a sure win.
Sneaker trends change at a breakneck pace, which is why there’s something to be said for a simple, timeless sneaker. Converse’s Chuck 70 sneaker is an upgraded take on the Boston brand’s iconic All-Star — it’s made with heavy-duty canvas and a thicker rubber outsole, adding to the shoe’s durability and style. As far as the best sneakers for “I just need them to work,” you can’t do much better. Although the product page on Amazon says “Women’s,” the shoes are indeed gender neutral with men’s sizes listed.
[From $80; amazon.com]
The Beckett Simonon Morgen sneaker has a vintage vibe that’ll instantly add some eye-catching style to more straightforward summer looks. The suede and white leather pop handsomely against the gum rubber sole, and the shoe works especially well with cuffed jeans and a classic T-shirt.
[$169 (was $250); beckettsimonon.com]
Taft makes some of the most beautiful sneakers for men you can get right now and their High Top Sneaker is proof. Boasting a basket-weave texture in brown leather (with black also available), this Spanish-made high-top is fit for the weekend but works just as well as a business casual sneaker. This brand just gets what men want in a sneaker and understands how to mix the desire for something subtle with something you’ve never seen before.
Some Vans styles can be tough to pull off if you’re not a skater, but the Authentic is an easy-to-wear lace-up style that rivals the Chuck Taylor for versatility. If the rubber caps on All-Stars are a little too bulbous, the narrower silhouette of the Authentic might be more your speed. There are many colors to choose from, but it’s hard to go wrong with the classic off-white with the blue trim.
Despite their confusing monikers, On and Hoka have both made a name for themselves in the running sneaker world. But Hoka sets itself apart from the rest of the running world for its vibrant colors and extra-cushioned soles that provide all-day comfort. The Hoka Clifton has a highly cushioned sole but a low 5mm drop for a natural stride. It’s the ideal shoe for running miles and errands alike. Eye Catching colors include “Cloud Blue,” “Vibrant Orange,” and “Passion Fruit.”
The vintage design of the German army trainer meets modern technology in these lightweight knit sneakers. They’re made from recycled plastic fiber, and each pair repurposes 28 plastic bottles. Plus, they’re machine-washable, so you can keep them looking fresh for many seasons to come (just follow the brand’s instructions carefully).
New Balance’s 990 sneaker series has been popular with comfort-loving dads for decades, but in recent years, the sneaker has gained traction with the fashion crowd. That’s a boon for anyone who wants to look cool without compromising comfort. The shoe is made in the USA and features an EVA foam and rubber sole as well as a mesh and suede upper, making this one of the all-around best men’s sneakers for walking. Go for the “Cool Grey” colorway for the full Steve Jobs effect.
[$150 (was $185); nordstrom.com]
In terms of performance, basketball shoes have come a long way since the Nike Blazer. In terms of aesthetics, though, the Blazer arguably sits alongside the Air Jordan 1s and Converse All-Star in the pantheon of the best-looking basketball shoes. The Blazer high tops have a design that’s minimalist but not boring, and they pair well with sportswear or casual looks.
Trail running shoes are a great alternative to bulky hiking shoes because they’re easy to wear both on and off the hiking trail. Salomon is a beloved hiking shoe brand, and, alongside technical brands like Arc’Teryx and The North Face, it’s become popular as streetwear, too. The Sense Ride 5 trail runners have a grippy outsole and moderate cushioning for tackling long walks on uneven paths. The heel tab and stretchy laces make it easy to pull these shoes on, while the stylish look makes them easy to pull off.
If you’re a frequent traveler (or just need good walking shoes), the TRVL Lite sneaker from Toms is worth a look. Its casual, low-key aesthetic pairs well with any outfit, while the ultra-comfortable and eco-friendly insole will cushion your feet for miles of pain-free exploration.
[From $70; zappos.com]