Best Vans Shoes Reviewed & Rated

The signature components of the original Vans shoes have not been lost, and are easily spotted on many modern versions and styles; allowing lifelong Vans fans and newbies alike to enjoy the iconic brand. While the brand mostly makes great everyday shoes and skate shoes, they’ve also brought forward new styles and designs that broaden the use to a more extensive variety of people, including small children and adults. Classic or current, Vans delivers only the most-relevant shoes created with quality features that extend their use. This best ten list will give you a variety of Vans best selling shoes while including all the important reasons why they’re a top-quality choice.

Standout Picks

Slip-On
No need to mess with laces with this fine pair of Vans shoes. Furthermore, these shoes have and the most personality you can find in a Vans shoe. You can find a design or color to fit every situation and mood. The construction of the shoe allows you to rely on the durability in everyday wear. Featuring a durable canvas upper and a padded ankle collar, these shoes are not only comfortable but are, also, made to last.
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Docket
This is a great padded skate shoe that not only adds style but, also, provides comfort. Featuring suede and textile uppers, these Vans are made with high-quality materials. Also combined with double stitching in the toe caps, these shoes are created to be durable and reliable. The padded collars and constructed cup soles are just an extra bonus towards flexibility and comfort.
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Sk8-Hi Reissue
The sk8-Hi Reissue is a leather trainer from Vans featuring the retro style you’ve come to expect of the company that made them. Offering the old-school lifestyle to anyone that wears them, you can look cool, but stay grounded, in the canvas/leather high-top Sk8-Hi. Featuring a dozen of color choices, from rose gold to glazed ginger, there is a pair for everyone out there, no matter what your unique preference.
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Authentic
When you think of Vans shoes, this is the first style that will usually come to mind. It is the most popular Vans shoe for multiple years in a row and continues to be loved by all ages. Featuring a colorful canvas upper of your choice and a reliable rubber sole, these shoes are great for everyday use and created to last. They can be worn in all social casual settings and provide the perfect blank canvas for you to make them your own.
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Old Skool Classic
With the signature style and the iconic side stripe, the Vans Old Skool comes with a perfect classic style that can be enjoyed by all ages. A mix of the durable Classic Skate and original Classic Authentic, this shoe will give you the best of both worlds. The mid-top style and padded ankle collar is just a bonus for added comfort and a secure fit.
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Herren Authentic
Step into the world of skateboarding with these Vans Herren Authentic Core Classic sneakers. They have a signature waffle outsole to give you an enhanced board feeling and depending on your color choice, the upper is made of either suede or canvas. Furthermore, there are many colors to choose from which gives you a great list to pick from.
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106 Vulcanized
These Vans give you comfort. Moreover, they have a sticky waffle outsole which creates a nice grip when needed. In addition, these shoes are lace-up which helps to attain a better overall fit. A padded collar and footbed help to increase comfort, as you sport these fine shoes around town. Walk in style with the Vans 106 Vulcanized Core Classics and you just might be the envy of all of your friends.
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Atwood
Inspired by the classics but with a new school cool feel, these Vans shoes are casual and fresh. This Vans shoe is and best seller and is highly recommended for a more stylish twist compared to other Vans shoes. The minimal and modern design, combined with the canvas material, creates a style that can truly be enjoyed by everyone.
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Era
Featuring an upgraded version of the original Vans Authentic- styled sneaker, the Era comes equipped with the extra cushion and style needed to make a great everyday shoe. The laid back design, quality stitching, and padded collar all combine to make the shoe comfortable and durable throughout all your movements. The overall structure and classic appearance make the shoe a true best seller from Vans.
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Bearcat
Similar to the Old Skool classic, the Bearcat is a modern, yet classic style that can be enjoyed by everyone. The suede and canvas upper, combined with the beautifully-crafted stitching, is a design that is appealing, comfortable, and durable. The cut EVA Midsoles and vulcanized rubber sole work as the protectors of the shoe, providing a secure form fit that is truly durable.
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Criteria Used for Evaluation

Style

When you think of Vans shoes, the first style that probably comes to mind is the most popular and original, Authentic shoe. If you look around at a skate park, a high school, or at any local event, you’ll see many different styles of this one shoe design everywhere. It’s genuinely a best-selling classic that makes a great everyday shoe.

While many users love this style, you may be looking for something that stands out a little more. Although Vans may keep their original favorites, they are, also, continuously working hard to create a larger variety of different styles that can reach a broader audience.

Nowadays, you’ll be able to find everyday sneakers, high-tops, slip-on shoes, sandals, and even shoes that work well for special occasions and casual events. No matter what kind of styles Vans creates, it’s always a design that is minimal, attractive, and can be enjoyed by any gender.

The style is very important to some people, and a lot of us like to feel that what we wear represents a part of who we are. While Vans creates a large variety of styles and color combinations, you may just still not have found the one that right for you. Maybe, you’re looking for something unique that stands out from the rest? With Vans fantastic customization options, you can choose from almost any of their sneaker designs, and change/add any colors or patterns to even the smallest details of the shoes. They are an excellent option for those who like to stay in style and be a part of the design process.

Vans simple shoe designs create a style that can work well with a large variety of clothing and occasions. Known for being a long-lasting, everyday shoe, the relevant appearance creates a youthful tone that can, also, be enjoyed by a variety of ages, even adults. While the original designs will always stay classic, Vans will continue to update their styles to consistently bring forward functional features.

Fit

From low-mid-high tops, Vans functional designs provide a lightweight form and comfortable fit in each type of shoe. Their combination of quality materials, clean-cut designs, and added insole cushion creates a form fit that settles comfortably around the foot.

Most of their designs are going their common low-cut style. This style perfectly forms underneath the balls of the ankle and aligns to your back heel. This form fit provides comfort, prevents irritation, and helps to stop your shoes from rubbing against your ankles.

You’ll find a few Vans shoe designs in a mid-length style which forms lightly over the ankle but without completely enclosing the area. These shoes are, usually, found with light cushioning around the ankle materials to help keep your feet comfortable.

High-top styles from Vans form over the ankle to surround it and just barely come in contact with the shin and calf. These styles can be a little snug or constrict around the ankles, which is why Vans creates these types of shoes with lightweight padding. This helps the shoe to form comfortably around foot and ankles without causing irritation or friction. They are, also, great in providing added ankle support, an ideal choice after an ankle-related injury, per se.

Some other smaller features found in a variety of Vans designs include padded ankle collar and tongue, UltraCush HD footbeds, Pro Vulc construction, and waffle cut rubber outsoles. All these little features play their own important roles and work together with the shoe to create an all-around form fit and comfortable design.

No matter what style or design you choose to wear from Vans, you’ll always find that the shoes form well to the foot without ever causing discomfort. The lightweight, yet, durable appearance is one that can truly be enjoyed by all, as the form fit is what allows the shoe to be realizable enough for everyday use.

Materials

While canvas is the most commonly used material in these shoes, the brand, also, uses a variety of other materials to create their attractive uppers. You’ll be able to find suede, leather, and textile materials in a variety of classic and new styles, as well.

No matter what material Vans uses on the uppers of their shoes, they’re all created with equal quality and durability. Vans aims to use materials that are lightweight and comfortable in feel and still provide a protective structure. If you’ve worn Vans shoes before, you’ll know the shoes do precisely just that.

While the outside of the shoe is essential for an attractive appearance and durability, the inside and bottoms of the shoe should, also, come equipped with the same level of durability and reliability.

In every Vans shoe, you’ll find that the bottom outsoles are all created with the same patterned traction and material. Vans uses their signature waffle cut rubber outsoles to provide durability and a lightweight grip that can work well on a variety of surfaces. These rubber soles are made to absorb impact and stay strong, no matter where you choose to walk.

On the insides of Vans shoes, you’ll find lightweight, UltraCush HD footbeds and sockliners. This thin cushioning helps to form to the shape of your foot while providing a close contact feel that is not only lightweight but, also, durable. In some of their shoes, you’ll, also, find that the sockliner is removable, which makes for an easy-clean ability to keep your shoes fresh.

Overall, Vans uses durable materials, and this is what creates the brand's positive reputation. If you take care of your shoes, your shoes will take care of you. The durability of these shoes is excellent quality and is made to provide long-lasting comfort.

Versatility

You can see the versatility of these shoes in a variety of ways. If you’re looking for a great everyday shoe, you’ll want to make sure it fits well in a variety of different settings. The more a shoe can work well in a variety of occasions, the more likely you’re going to wear them and, thus, favorite them for their wide range of uses.

Versatility is a significant feature the Vans company thought about when creating all of their shoe designs. The unisex shoe styles are both minimal and attractive while, also, providing a youthful, fresh appearance. The styles of Vans sneakers truly create a common ground for enjoyment, no matter what your gender or aesthetic is.

The unisex designs may be extremely versatile in use but the design is, also, good for another reason. Vans shoes can work for any age group, from infants, toddlers, kids, teens, and adults. This isn’t a shoe company that targets one audience; instead, they work hard to create versatile designs that can be enjoyed by, literally, anyone.

Aside from style, you’ll, also, find that the waffle cut rubber outsoles provide an underlying sense of versatility. The lightweight, yet, resilient traction provides comfort and grip in a large variety of surfaces and settings. From indoors to concrete or outside on grass or dirt, Vans shoes are created so that you don’t have to limit your activities, just because of your shoes. This durability is truly versatile in letting the user accomplish it all.

All around, it’s Vans’ functional design and quality materials that allow for durability and the enjoyment of all users. Contrary to the original belief that Vans are youth shoes, you can now see the unique versatility that the shoe provides. If you like the style, you’ll be happy to know that it can be worn any day and by any kind of person. Vans are truly the top brand in creating everyday shoes.

Brand

When looking to purchase a new pair of shoes that you’re planning on wearing every day, it’s important to know your shoes are going to be comfortable and reliable. Brand reputation is a very, relevant way to assess companies and easily find the best shoes possible.

Creating a good brand reputation isn’t easy though. Companies have to work hard to create features and designs that provide superiority from the rest of their competitors. While Vans is commonly recognized as a skate shoe brand, they are, also, very reputable in youth shoes and everyday, casual sneakers.

Since 1966, the Vans team has been working hard to create unisex designs that can be enjoyed by all while providing a form fit and comfort for long periods of time. If you look around, you’ll see many different types of people wearing Vans shoes, and they’re not all teens and skaters. The brand has appealed to adults with styles like their Old Skool High-Tops and Chauffeur SF slip-on loafer.

Vans use relevant materials and technology to deliver all your basic comfort needs. From the durable canvas materials to the resilient waffle cut rubber outsoles, the shoe’s designs can remain a simple and attractive style while, also, providing simple, lightweight security.

From personal experience as well, I can tell you that if you treat the shoes well and don’t put too much hard use on them, they can, actually, last for a few years without showing any signs of damage. It’s personal reviews like this one, and the ability for users to customize their shoe designs that, also, truly enhance the brand’s high-quality reputation.

10 Best Vans Shoes

1. Slip-On

Where to buy
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Slip-On
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No need to mess with laces with this fine pair of Vans shoes. Furthermore, these shoes have and the most personality you can find in a Vans shoe. You can find a design or color to fit every situation and mood. The construction of the shoe allows you to rely on the durability in everyday wear. Featuring a durable canvas upper and a padded ankle collar, these shoes are not only comfortable but are, also, made to last.

While slip-on shoes may be convenient, you also want to make sure that the shoes are, also, secure and don't rub against the ankles. The padded ankle collars create a comfortable form fit around the ankle that helps to keep your foot in place during movement.

This shoe has all of the original features of a Vans shoe but has a true reliability that can stand up to a range of wear and tear. The durable canvas upper and waffle cut rubber outsoles help to increase reliability and extend the lifespan of the shoe.

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2. Docket

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Docket
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This is a great padded skate shoe that not only adds style but, also, provides comfort. Featuring suede and textile uppers, these Vans are made with high-quality materials. Also combined with double stitching in the toe caps, these shoes are created to be durable and reliable. The padded collars and constructed cup soles are just an extra bonus towards flexibility and comfort.

These skate shoes are great for protection and constructive cushioning. From the tongue and ankle collars to the entire upper, the Docket comes with complete cushioning around the entire foot.

The upper is important for the appearance and adds to the reliable construction of the shoe. Vans made sure to create these shoes with quality, which is why they used a combination of suede and textiles to create comfort and durability all in one.

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3. Sk8-Hi Reissue

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Sk8-Hi Reissue
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The sk8-Hi Reissue is a leather trainer from Vans featuring the retro style you’ve come to expect of the company that made them. Offering the old-school lifestyle to anyone that wears them, you can look cool, but stay grounded, in the canvas/leather high-top Sk8-Hi. Featuring a dozen of color choices, from rose gold to glazed ginger, there is a pair for everyone out there, no matter what your unique preference.

The vulcanized rubber seen in the Sk8-Hi is a great outsole if you are looking for durability and traction in your shoe. The waffle pattern on the bottom of the shoe is especially awesome as it lets you really feel the board like a regular shoe can’t. The padded collar and heel add support to the foot, but also provide flexibility when in motion.

The canvas/leather upper is the perfect combination of style and breathability. Keep your feet dry and cool, no matter how hard you’ve been going. Perforations in the toe-cap only add to the efficacy of this feature. Finally, the double hook-and-loop closure system will keep your feet feeling snug as a glove. We love the Reissue of the Sk8-Hi, as it gives style and functionality. Who says you can’t have it all?

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4. Authentic

Where to buy
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Authentic
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When you think of Vans shoes, this is the first style that will usually come to mind. It is the most popular Vans shoe for multiple years in a row and continues to be loved by all ages. Featuring a colorful canvas upper of your choice and a reliable rubber sole, these shoes are great for everyday use and created to last. They can be worn in all social casual settings and provide the perfect blank canvas for you to make them your own.

The rounded design and canvas material is a signature style by Vans. The iconic rubber waffle outsoles are ideal for skating, everyday wear, and brand recognition. The signature Vans flag is subtle and tasteful.

This shoe can be dressed up or dressed down. With Vans, you gain a large selection of personalization and, you can change every aspect of the shoe’s colors, materials, and designs. Every closet needs a pair of shoes that can be acceptable for casual events to running errands.

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5. Old Skool Classic

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Old Skool Classic
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With the signature style and the iconic side stripe, the Vans Old Skool comes with a perfect classic style that can be enjoyed by all ages. A mix of the durable Classic Skate and original Classic Authentic, this shoe will give you the best of both worlds. The mid-top style and padded ankle collar is just a bonus for added comfort and a secure fit.

The vulcanized construction through the iconic Vans waffle design shines through on this shoe, allowing for ultimate grip during athletic and everyday use. The Old Skool gives more support than the Classic Authentic and is a little more giving than the Authentic Skate.

With a few variations in fabrics and color combinations, it’s a great fit for those who are looking for something classic with a bit of a twist. The textures are understated, but lend a touch of style while remaining timeless.

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6. Herren Authentic

Where to buy
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Herren Authentic
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Step into the world of skateboarding with these Vans Herren Authentic Core Classic sneakers. They have a signature waffle outsole to give you an enhanced board feeling and depending on your color choice, the upper is made of either suede or canvas. Furthermore, there are many colors to choose from which gives you a great list to pick from.

These are shoes which allow you to customize the upper according to the color you have chosen. This, in turn, makes for a day of comfort in that you can decide which is the best for you. The Ultracush footbed is responsible for bringing you the comfort you have come to expect from Vans. Moreover, the extra cushioning is nice when foot meets skateboard.

These shoes run in mid-range to the upper end of cost association. They are built and designed for skateboarding and have decent cushioning with the board in mind. As such, these are shoes worth the purchase price, especially when applied for the love of the skateboard.

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7. Vulcanized

Where to buy
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106 Vulcanized
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These Vans give you comfort. Moreover, they have a sticky waffle outsole which creates a nice grip when needed. In addition, these shoes are lace-up which helps to attain a better overall fit. A padded collar and footbed help to increase comfort, as you sport these fine shoes around town. Walk in style with the Vans 106 Vulcanized Core Classics and you just might be the envy of all of your friends.

The canvas material is thin which means it is a great design for warmer weather. Furthermore, the canvas is comfortable. As such, you can relax while enjoying your day. For those looking for a bit more traction, in terms of sticky behavior, these Vans are made just for you. They provide good grip in those moments when you may need it the most.

These are Vans which are budget-friendly. This makes them even more appealing, in addition to their padded collar and footbed, the rubber outsole, and the canvas upper; not to mention, these are Vans which have a nice aesthetic appeal to them.

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8. Atwood

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Atwood
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Inspired by the classics but with a new school cool feel, these Vans shoes are casual and fresh. This Vans shoe is and best seller and is highly recommended for a more stylish twist compared to other Vans shoes. The minimal and modern design, combined with the canvas material, creates a style that can truly be enjoyed by everyone.

The structure of this shoe, combined with the very stylish feel, makes for an ideal overall design. You can feel great inside and out about the shoe because the support will add to your comfort, and the compliments will validate your purchase.

With better support than Classic Vans, this design will allow you to wear the shoe all day and still be comfortable. Allow for a little time to break in the shoe, but once you get past the new shoe smell, you won’t want to take them off.

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9. Era

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Era
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Featuring an upgraded version of the original Vans Authentic- styled sneaker, the Era comes equipped with the extra cushion and style needed to make a great everyday shoe. The laid back design, quality stitching, and padded collar all combine to make the shoe comfortable and durable throughout all your movements. The overall structure and classic appearance make the shoe a true best seller from Vans.

From those of you really trying to avoid friction and getting blisters, this feature is a must-have for protecting your ankles. The padded ankle collar provides a comfortable soft cushioning that forms lightly around your ankle and moves comfortably as you do.

The heel accents, actually, play two parts in this shoe. It not only adds a nice visual element, but the cushion lends a hand in the comfort and overall structure. The collar is padded and flexible to continue the trend of a stunning overall structure.

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10. Bearcat

Where to buy
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Bearcat
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Similar to the Old Skool classic, the Bearcat is a modern, yet classic style that can be enjoyed by everyone. The suede and canvas upper, combined with the beautifully-crafted stitching, is a design that is appealing, comfortable, and durable. The cut EVA Midsoles and vulcanized rubber sole work as the protectors of the shoe, providing a secure form fit that is truly durable.

The upper of these shoes are embroidered with their side stripe logo on the sides of the shoes. The Vans logo on the top of the tongue of the shoe is, also, embroidered with the same quality stitching. This stitching is crafted with quality and not only adds appeal to the shoe but, also, helps to keep the materials durable and intact during use.

The double-stitched toe cap and EVA Midsoles are both very functional features that provide a durable and comfortable fit in the shoe. On the outside, the vulcanized rubber soles provide grip and protection from the outer surfaces you walk on. All around, the shoe is made of a durable, form-fitting structure that is a perfect choice for an everyday shoe.

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Sources

  1. vans.com, Vans , website
  2. Influenster, Vans Reviews, blog
  3. Allaire, C, The 10 Most Iconic Vans Sneakers Ever, article; blog
  4. vans.com, A Brief History of Vans: “Off the Wall” Since ‘66, article; blog
  5. Wikipedia, Vans, article