Vans have been, and will probably always be, one of the most popular shoe manufacturers around the world. Originally made for skateboarders, Vans shoes remain a brand that provide a durable pair of sneakers that everyone can count on, no matter where you’re going. Although there are still classic designs in production today, Vans have expanded their shoe empire from just skateboarding shoes and now offer an array of shoes for many different activities — including running, hitting the gym, and even snowboarding. Below we have compiled a list of our favorite best Vans sneakers and running shoes, so you can have a comfy pair of sneakers whatever you are doing.
What Makes Vans Shoes So Popular?
As we mentioned above, Vans originally became popular within the skateboarding community. Skateboarders loved the rugged design and simple construction and the tricky sole adheres well to skateboards, making them the perfect shoes for jumps and flips. Later, the company started using the “Off The Wall” logo that Vans are known for today, which initially meant pulling off jumps and aerials off the rim of drained pools.
However, over the years Vans have evolved from just a skateboarding company and now cater to a variety of different sports including BMX, surfing and snowboarding. With so many different designs of shoes out there now, Vans are a popular shoe for every day wear too. They have a sturdy and durable design and the rubber soles help to support your feet. Different companies such as Disney and Supreme have also done collaborations with Vans that have only aided their popularity.
Nowadays, Vans sits as one of the most popular shoe brands of all times and, with new designs and colors available all the time, there’s no wonder why.
Types Of Vans Shoes
There are many different types of Vans shoes. Although Vans started out as a skateboarding company and this is the sport that the sneakers are catered towards, some versions of Vans sneakers have become popular as an everyday shoe too, even for those who don’t skate.
First of all, there are three different types of cuts of Vans shoes — low-top, mid-top and high-top. Low-top sneakers are sneakers that do not cover the ankle and have a very minimalistic design. They were popular among skaters before mid-top and high-top shoes came into play. Low-top Vans are lightweight, low-maintenance and easy to style.
Mid-tops are not quite as popular. They can come right up to the ankle but never go over it. They are normally worn by skateboarders because they are not as flimsy as a low-top, but they do not restrict ankle movement as much as a high-top. High-top Vans are used by pro-skaters because they offer the most ankle protection. However, they are now also popular within the non-skating community too as they are considered stylish and fashionable.
Within these three cuts of Vans shoes there are a range of shoes for different purposes. The most popular Vans shoes are the classic skateboarding shoes — normally either low-top or high-top and made of canvas — and are worn by both skateboarders and non-skateboarders for every day use. There are also Vans designed for professional skateboarders, as well as shoes made for snowboarders and surfers. If you’re a big fan, you can also get custom Vans sneakers made for your own taste.
Some of these shoes are more iconic and best-selling than others. Below we have listed our favorite Vans shoes for everyday wear, and sport and running wear. Take a look at the top picks, all available to you on Amazon.
The Best Vans Sneakers and Running Shoes
The Men’s Low-Top Sneakers are a great Vans shoe for everyday wear or for hitting the gym. They feature a textile upper with the iconic Vans stripe and give you an athletic feel with an enhanced heel support, helping to keep you comfy no matter what you are doing. The sole is made of rubber and is very durable and the UltraCush Lite outsoles and sock liners promote an extremely lightweight shoe, making them perfect for working out.
Even though this is an athletic shoe and not a traditional Vans skateboarding shoe, it still has the great look of a Vans shoe with a low top lace-up silhouette with minimal structure. These shoes come in 3 different colors.
Perfect for everyday wear, the Vans Unisex Adults’ Ultrarange Rapidweld sneakers are new to the Vans range. They provide long lasting comfort with a brand new ultra cush lite midsole, and the luxliner sock-fit construction with seamless internals helps to reduce weight, rubbing and hotspots. Very durable, these shoes can be worn when running errands or going to the gym and the clean aesthetic means they look great with everything. With synthetic, textile, and suede uppers, these shoes are fully breathable and have the classic Vans waffle lug outsole to ensure good grip.
With an athletic fit, the Vans Mens ISO 3 sneakers are perfect for different sports, including running and hitting the gym. With an enhanced heel support these shoes stay comfortable as you exercise and there are also UltraCush Lite outsoles and sock liners. These men’s shoes have the classic waffle sole that gives you great grip on a variety of different terrains and the EVA insole both cushions and supports your foot, helping to keep it in place while you exercise too. The shoe has an overall modern look and the classic gray color fits right in with any gym wear.
The Vans Old Skool shoes are one of the most classic and famous of all of Vans’ shoes. Perfect whether you are a skateboarder or not, the design of this shoe represents a timeless skate style for both men and women. The vulcanized construction gives both comfort and durability, ensuring that these shoes will last you a long time, and the sole is rubber for extra strength.
The sole of the shoe has the original “waffle” design that Vans became famous for, giving you an excellent grip, especially on skateboards, and great flexibility too. The canvas upper comes in a range of different colors, so you can have a pair to match every outfit!
Another classic Vans shoe, the Vans Authentic Core sneakers are also great for both skateboarding and everyday wear. With a more simple design than the Vans Old Skool, the Authentic has many of the same features, giving you both comfort and durability. The sole is again rubber for extra strength and it features the classic waffle design that promotes excellent traction against both the ground and skateboards.
The upper is made of durable canvas and there are metal eyelets to hold the shoelaces in place. With their retro design, these shoes are available in a very large range of different colours and designs, including classic black and white, camouflage and checkerboard.
Similar to the other Rapidweld sneakers we mentioned above, these Vans Womens Ultrarange Rapidweld are designed to be worn everyday. A low-top lace shoe, these sneakers feature Luxliner, creating a moulded sock-like fit for great shape and support. The UltraCush Lite foam cushioning, co-moulded with the waffle outsole, provides long-lasting comfort and the breathable mesh upper with the Rapidweld stitchless construction gives increased comfort and flexibility, so you can move quickly and freely in these shoes.
The reverse waffle lug tread pattern brings maximum durability and superior grip on the outsole, too. Even better, it comes in an animal print design.
The VANS Sk8-Hi Unisex Casual High-Top sneakers are one of the most classic skateboarding shoes Vans has to offer. These lace-up high-top shoes are inspired by the classic Old Skool, yet also support your ankle for maximum comfort. Perfect for wearing everyday or while you skate, these shoes have a durable canvas and suede upper and a supportive and padded ankle. As with many of the Vans shoes on this list, these also have the classic vulcanized signature waffle sole, giving you great traction and grip on multiple terrains, including your skateboard! These are available in a range of colors, including the classic black and white.
These Old Skool Vans are the same as the Old Skool Vans we mention above, except these ones are specifically designed for women and give a better fit to the female foot. They still provide all the same features as the men’s Old Skool design, including a durable leather and fabric upper with the iconic side stripe and a lace up closure for a secure fit. They have a padded tongue for added support as well as cushioned footbed for comfort. The sole of these shoes are just as durable as the men’s and still come with the iconic waffle design. Perfect for women, they ensure you get the best fit of the Vans classic.
Similarly to the Old Skool women’s shoes listed above, these Women’s Authentic Core Classics are another Vans shoe specifically designed to fit a women’s foot. With the same classic deign as the men’s, these shoes still feature the simplistic skate design with the canvas upper and rubber sole. The sole is waffle design for great grip and traction and the canvas material and laces give a snug yet comfortable and supportive fit. Perfect for both skateboarders and those who want to wear these sneakers every day, they come in a range of colors so you can buy a pair to compliment every outfit.
These Vans Unisex Era Skate Shoes are another classic design from Vans. Similar to the Authentic Core classics, these come in an all black and are perfect to wear as school or work shoes. Very comfortable, these low top, lace-up shoes come with a padded tongue and lining for extra comfort. There is also a padded ankle collar to ensure they don’t rub against your foot. The simple design means they do not stand out and are the perfect shoe for many outfits. These can be worn everyday or as a skateboarding shoe, and feature the waffle outsole for a firmer grip.
This pair of Ultrarange Rapidweld shoes are tailored to fit men’s feet and are available in large sizes. That being the only difference, this pair of Ultrarange Rapidweld sneakers are great for your everyday workout or just running errands. With an iconic style, the stitchless technology of these shoes makes them extra durable and the UltraCush Lite foam cushioning from the heel to the toe maximizes comfort. There is also the LuxLiner seamless inner sock to reduce weight, rubbing and hotspots, making them lightweight on your feet. As with the other Ultrarange Rapidweld, there is also the reverse waffle lug tread pattern sole that provides a powerful grip to support your every move.
The Vans Men Docket shoes look more like a traditional skate shoe that you would find with other brands. A part of the Vans Performance range, the Docket is a classic skate shoe with timeless performance construction. With a suede and textile upper, these shoes have a double stitched toecap for durability and they have been designed with an EVA midsole and constructed using Ortholite, making them the perfect performance shoe by providing long-lasting cushioning and air flow for a cool foot.
The gum rubber outsole is durable and is deigned to grip the ground or board well, too. They come in a versatile black and white colorway and have embroidered logos on the tongue and side of the shoe.
Vans Shoes FAQ’s
What does the “Off The Wall” slogan mean?
The Vans “Off The Wall” slogan was first used in the 1970s and came from skateboarders pulling off jumps and aerials off the rim of drained pools. The slogan has remained with the company ever since and now has a more modern meaning symbolizing freedom and individuality.
How do you spot fake Vans shoes?
There are many ways you can spot fake Vans shoes. First of all, the price is something you should look out for. A good pair of Vans shoes can cost around $40 or more, so if the price is lower than that or seems too good to be true, they are probably fake. You can also look out for the company trademarks inside and outside the sneaker. If anything seems off or is wrongly spelt or is an odd color, then it is probably fake. The stitching is another thing to watch for because the shoe should be durable — if it is not then you may have purchased a fake pair.
Look out for where you purchase your Vans sneakers from too — you should go to a reputable website so you know the product is going to be genuine. These are just some of the things you should look out for when trying to spot fake Vans shoes.
How do you clean Vans shoes?
Vans shoes are not designed to go in the washing machine, but you can do this if you are gentle with them and put them in a bag on a gentle spin. You can also wash them by hand with mild detergent and warm water, letting them air dry.
Vans shoes are popular for a reason — they are comfy, durable and perfect for a range of different activities. Although they were originally designed for skateboarders, Vans have created so many different styles that you will be sure to find a pair you love. Whether you’re looking for a shoe for skateboarding, running, hitting the gym or every day wear, Vans have a shoe for you.