15 Best Skate Shoes for Skateboarding (Updated 2018!)

best skate shoes


The best skate shoes aren’t the most expensive ones. They’re the ones that function well, are comfortable, and can take a beating.

Since your time’s important, I’ll cut to the chase: DC Court Graffiks are the best skateboarding shoes out there. They skyrocketed into this position because of their ultra-comfort and level-of-protection.

Before we get into the actual models, we’re diving into what makes a skate shoe awesome. Skip ahead to get into the designs, or stay with me to learn about why certain shoes are a top choice.

It’s important to note that all shoe sizes in this post refer to men’s sizing. Women can absolutely wear men’s skate shoes–simply size down about 1.5 sizes.

In other words, a men’s size 7 is roughly equivalent to a women’s 8.5. Keep this in mind, when choosing the proper size.

This quick intro is broken down into the following sections:

Throw on your learning cap, and let’s jump into the basics of skateboarding footwear.

Skate Shoe Types

As a general rule of thumb, there are four different kinds of skateboarding shoes:

  • Low-top
  • Mid-top
  • High-top
  • Slip-ons

Even if you don’t know much about shoes, you probably have an inkling of what those shoe-types look like.

Low-tops are a typical low-profile shoe, that has an approximate-height of crew-socks. In other words, no-show or crew socks don’t pop out the top. Classic low-tops include Vans Authentic and Keds.

They’re a very simple, lightweight design. While they don’t provide tons of ankle support–owing to the shape–they’re generally loaded with fantastic insoles, to mitigate cushioning and dampening.

Mid-top shoes come up slightly-higher on the leg, than a low-top. They tend to hit just-below your ankle bone. Typical mid-tops are models like the Nike SB and many Etnies models.

Mids provide the perfect in-between for low- and high-tops. That means they have a bit more stability than a low, but not as much as a high. Typically great shoes for year-round use.

High-top shoes fully cover your ankle, and cinch at the area where your calf meets the ankle. Well-known high-tops include high-top Chuck All-stars.

What makes a high-top skateboard shoe awesome, is the stability and padding it provides for the ankle. So, they’re a bit better for your health. Because of their height, though, they provide more warmth–great in the winter, something to think about in the summer.

Slip-ons are laceless shoes, where you literally slide your foot in and go. There’s no tying involved, and they tend to be a low-top. Slip ons include Vans classics.

While very similar to low-tops, they stand out for their breathability (although your feet might stink over time), comfort, and vulcanized sole. We’ll dive into the latter below.

The major differences in these profiles includes the length, and the inclusion of laces. Slip-on skate shoes are the only ones without laces. The rest are differentiated via how high they come up the ankle or leg.

While these are the classic styles, there are a number of important things to look for, in addition to the shoe’s profile.

Top Skate Shoe Qualities

Shape’s purely a personal preference, when it comes to skateboarding. You need to do what’s right for your feet’s temperature and comfort.

But, you do need to consider a number of other things, like:

  • Material it’s made of
  • Stitching
  • Types of soles
  • Extras

Just like with skateboard clothing, material plays an important role in the quality of footwear, too.

There are generally two types of material: Canvas and leather. Now, that doesn’t mean they’re the only materials, rather a blanket term, to convey how they look and feel.

Canvas (and often hemp) shoes are extremely beneficial, in terms of breathability. They’re lightweight, to boot. But, they won’t hold up nearly as well as leather skate shoes.

Leather (suede, faux-leather, too) are built to have the crap beaten out of them. They’ll hold up over time, against the harsh wear and tear of concrete and grip tape.

Canvas skate shoes are ideal for cruising around town, without going too hard. Leather skate shoes are built for park rats, and hard street skating. Ultimately, the material that works best for you, is determined by your riding style.

Up next, we’re diving into stitching. Again, just like with apparel, stitching on shoes acts as a reinforcement for the materials. In other words, they keep your shoes from blowing out quickly.

Many models of skate shoes are designed with double- or triple-stitching, around the kick flip zones and toe box. That extra support is 100% necessary, when these high-impact areas are constantly rubbing against rough material.

Ideally, triple-stitching is the way to go. But, if done well, double-stitching can hold its own, too. If you’re going rogue, though, do your research before purchasing single-stitched skate shoes–many blow out before you can say, “They’re comfortable!”

In the slip-on description above, I mentioned types of soles and their importance to skateboarding. There are two types: Vulcanized and cupsole.

Vulcanized soles are made by heating the rubber bottom of the shoe, which is then attached to the top part of the shoe. It’s stronger than traditional glue, and ensures there’s only a rubber sole between you and the board.

In other words, it makes your skateboard feel better, and provides loads of flexibility. On the other hand, though, this construction provides very little support.

Cupsoles are crafted by sewing together the top and bottom pieces. This process allows manufacturers to include various upgrades, like heel and arch support, or airbags.

Where they differ from vulcanized ones, is that they’re far more supportive and provide more protection. On the flip side, though, that means you don’t feel the board as well.

If you’re ripping a 15-stair, or something equally as daunting, cupsoles tend to be your best bet. But, ultimately it’s what you prefer.

The last thing to look for is “extras”. It sounds relatively ambiguous…because it is. Skate shoe manufacturers can get creative as hell, and include some pretty sweet ideas.

Since those extras cover a wide array of things, I won’t list anything off. Just be aware, and look for whatever cool add-ons they mention.

How to Choose the Best Skate Shoes for You

We’ve touched on this a number of times, but I’ll fully lay it out: The best skateboarding shoes coincide with comfort, and how you ride.

If you prefer to tear it up in the park, going for a leather material, mid- or high-top, and cupsole would be in your best interest.

If you’re more of a cruiser, and occasionally dabble in tricks, then a low-, mid-, or slip-on, with a vulcanized sole, will do the trick.

Ultimately, you need to sit back and asses what features you like to hit, and whether you’re looking for extra support and stability.

In the end, you can purchase any pair of skate footwear for any type of riding. It all comes down to what you’re most comfortable with–that’s it.

For more info on the topic, peep this guide to skate shoes.

Now that I’ve talked your ear off about the basics of skateboarding shoes, it’s time to ask

What are the best skate shoes?

1. DC Court Graffik Skate Shoe – $38.96+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Available in massive size and color range
  • #1 best selling skate shoe on Amazon
  • Low-top outfitted with tons of extra padding and protection
  • Ideal for most riders
  • Lace holes are not reinforced
  • Laces may look too wide – easily replace them

Hands-down, without a doubt, there are a number of skateboard footwear companies, you can rattle off the top of your head.

DC’s definitely one of them. But, they’re not just the sultans of shoes. No, they’re also the specialists of snowboarding–and earned a spot on my top snowboard brands.

But, we’re here to talk about the former. And what better way to start, than with the DC Court Graffik Skate Shoe?

DC Court Graffik Skate Shoes Review

Material: Leather
Cut: Low-top
Stitching: Strong
Sole: Rubber, pill-pattern tread
Extras: Vent holes, foam padded collar & tongue

Before we get too far into this skate shoes review, don’t just take my word for how awesome they are. They’re the #1 best selling skate shoe on Amazon–an impressive feat.

In other words, there are literally thousands of reviews on these bad boys–and they’re yet to disappoint.

As DC’s most popular skate shoe, there’s good reason. Aside from the fantastic aesthetics (and sheer number of designs!), they’re like a pillow of pure fluff.

With the additional cushioned panels, and foam collar and tongue, they provide an unmatched-level-of-comfort, both on- and off-the-board.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Most riders.

Owing to their extreme comfort, and extra padding, they provide more stability than a typical low-cut shoe.

What that means for you, is easier execution of tricks, without the bulkiness of a higher-top shoe.

And, the leather material ensures you can beat these shoes to death….without batting an eyelash.

No matter what, a pair of DC Court Graffiks are a solid choice.

Also available in: 20+ colors, sizes 3 – 18.

Buy a pair of DC Court Graffik Skate Shoes here.

2. Vans Authentics – $24.15+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Incredibly comfortable from the get-go – no break-in period
  • Available in a wide variety of sizes & colors
  • Super easy to clean – doesn’t immediately show wear & tear
  • Laces are very strong – won’t rip easily
  • Flat insole – no support
  • Not ideal for super hard riding – ideal for cruising

In the capsule above, I mentioned there are a number of well-known skateboard shoe companies. DC, of course, being one of them.

Can you give me another? Vans? Yep! You nailed it.

Vans are by far one of the best skateboarding shoe brands out there. I’d be just plain dumb, if the Vans Authentic didn’t make the list.

Vans Authentic Review

Material: Canvas
Cut: Low-top
Sole: Vulcanized, Waffle pattern

Vans Authentic shoes are a crowd favorite. Heck, many non-skaters adore the look and feel of them, too. I mean, they do look fashionable in just about every situation.

What that means as a skateboarder, is that you can rip it on your board, step off, and be ready for a totally different environment.

These babies pretty much epitomize a low-profile, canvas, vulcanized soled shoe. They’re lightweight, breathable, and really allow you to feel the board between your feet.

Because of that sole-type, though, you’re in for a real treat: Scuff-free riding. Over time, you’ll notice wear-and-tear, but off-the-bat, you’re looking at a truly durable set of footwear.

With a stark white sole, dirt’s an inevitability. Luckily, they’re ridiculously easy to clean: Clorox wipes are about to be your new BFF.

From the second you slip them on, you’ll realize your=’re rocking the ultimate set of comfortable shoes for skateboarding. Tie them up with the strong laces, and you’re ready to rip it.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Riders who prefer to cruise, or only hit the park on occasion.

Owing to their canvas construction, in addition to vulcanized soles, they’re not built for consistent abuse. Instead, they shine in situations where you’re not tearing them up, every second of the day.

But, if you’re ok with purchasing new skate shoes more frequently, you can still rock these Vans, as a park rat–you’ll just have to replace them more often, than other sturdier materials.

In the end, if you’re looking for a super comfortable, low-profile shoe, with no break-in period, then you need a Vans Authentic.

Also available in: 10+ colors, sizes 6-13.

Buy a pair of Vans Authentics here.

3. Etnies Marana Skate Shoe – $40.99+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Available in huge size- & color-range
  • Built to take a frickin’ beating
  • Insanely comfortable insole – removable, if you want to put in orthotics
  • Outsole’s designed by Michelin – super grippy & durable
  • A bit skinny in the toe area
  • Hidden lace loop placement may be off

We’ve already covered two super well-known skateboard shoe brands: Vans and DC. Now, it’s time to look at a more cusp-y company: Etnies.

First up, are the Etnies Marana Skate Shoes.

Etnies Marana Skate Shoe Review

Material: Leather & textile
Cut: Low-top
Stitching: Single-stitch
Sole: Cupsole, injected rubber toe cap, car tire tread, Michelin 400 NBS rubber outsole
Extras: Pro Foam 1 Polyurethane insole, STI Evolution Foam Mid-sole

If you took a peek at the specs and wondered why there were so many car references, you’re not alone.

First up, is the car tire-inspired tread. If you’ve ever studied tires, then you’ll immediately see the similarities between the two. This design provides beefy, grippy feel against the board.

The second car-related piece is the use of Michelin outsoles–Michelin’s the Marana outsole manfacturer. As you’d expect from a tire company, they literally used rubber and tread from tires.

But, it’s not just any rubber. Rather, it’s extremely lightweight, grippy, flexible, and of course, durable. It was developed from a specialized outdoor tire, while the tread drew inspiration from all-terrain tires. All-in-all, this new outsole is three-times-more-durable than the original Maranas.

That durability doesn’t stop at the outsole, though. No–the midsole’s an STI evolution. In laymen’s terms, it’s an exceedingly durable material, with tons of cushion, and impact-protection…aka tough AF.

Continuing on the sole train, is the Pro Foam 1 polyurethane insole. They provide a bit of arch support, but not too much. Overall, they’re super comfortable, and can be removed, if you have orthotics.

The toe cap really ups the durability, on these bad boys. When you hit a kick flip, they flick well. In conjunction with the cupsole, you’re looking at an incredibly strong pair of shoes.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Any skateboarder, but more specifically, park rats.

Thanks to their insane levels of durability (a toe cap and a copsole?!), they’re made to take a beating. So, if you’re hard on your shoes, the Maranas are an incredible choice.

Aside from the outsole, they feature a number of other comfort-increasing qualities, including an STI evolution midsole, padded tongue and collar, and pro foam insole.

In other words, you’re rocking something that’s comfy as all get out…and can be rode hard, and put away wet–figuratively, of course.

You’ll be hard-pressed to find anything that remotely touches these Etnies, in terms of sheer longevity of use.

Also available in: 20+ colors, sizes 5 – 13.

Buy a pair of Etnies Marana Skate Shoe here.

4. C1RCA AL50 Skate Shoe – $24.99+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Vulcanized sole, with triple-stitching & toe cap – super durable
  • Built to take a beating
  • Long-lasting, strong construction
  • Comes with extra set of laces
  • Run a bit small – consider sizing up

Now’s the time to get into some skateboard footwear by companies you might not be aware of their existence, like C1RCA.

Wait….the baby clothing company? Close, but that’s Circo. While similar in name, they differ significantly in practice.

So, let’s get-to-gettin’, with the C1RCA AL50 Skate Shoes.

C1RCA AL50 Skate Shoe Review

Material: Leather
Cut: Low-top
Stitching: Triple-stitched
Sole: Vulcanized rubber, toe bumper
Extras: Mesh tongue, padded tongue & collar, Adrian Lopez’s signature design

As with just about any sports equipment, when a pro designs a model, it’s sure to be freakin’ sweet. After all, pros know the ins and outs of what makes a particular pair of footwear the best skate shoes around.

Pro, Adrian Lopez, is the genius behind these bad boys. Known for his hard work and dedication, these qualities are reflected in his signature model.

Built to take a beating, they’re encased in a durable leather. So, they won’t easily tear up, when you’re working on new tricks.

Where they stand out, though, is the sole. A vulcanized rubber really allows you to feel the deck between your feet. But, they’re not just any vulcanized sole–they’re triple-stitched and have a toe cap.

What that means for you, is an extremely gummy sole, with the durability and added protection of a cupsole. While not quite as protective as a cupsole, it’s far better than a typical vulcanized one.

Of course, any pro skater understands how sweaty and nasty your feet get, during a skate sesh. That’s why the tongue’s made with a breathable mesh, for added coolness.

And, you get a second pair of laces. Goodness knows, replacing laces is a necessary evil. But, this pair pushes off that annoyance…at least for a bit.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Anyone looking for a super durable skate shoe, without paying out the nose.

Quality can cost a pretty penny. But, these C1RCAs provide an excellent alternative. They’re incredibly strong, with significant longevity…even if you beat the sh*t out of them.

Plus, they come with an extra set of laces. So, for the first few months, you don’t have to do any maintenance on them–a total bonus in anyone’s book.

When you trust the skating greats, you receive the best equipment to skate.

Also available in: 15+ colors, sizes 4 – 14.

Buy a pair of C1RCA AL50 Skate Shoes here.

5. Emerica Figueroa Skate Shoe – $21.70+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Amazing for technical riding
  • Very low-profile – more so, than even Vans
  • Cupsole, with toe cap – super gummy, like it’s vulcanized
  • Internal booties stop slipping – hug your feet & super comfortable
  • Very little arch support – booties help mitigate this

Ah, Emerica. One of those semi-famous skate shoe companies, that shares an eerily similar name with Comerica. Again, not remotely the same company, but awesome, nonetheless.

Over the years, they’ve consistently produced solid skateboard footwear. But today, we’re focusing on the Emerica Figueroa Skate Shoes.

Emerica Figueroa Skate Shoe Review

Material: Leather & textile
Cut: Low-top
Stitching: None
Sole: Cupsole, toe cup, triangle-tread
Extras: Internal booties

At first glance, you might be confused as to why the Figgy Skate Shoe can have a cupsole….but no stitching. Kinda sounds like a vulcanized sole, right?

Absolutely–but that’s the beauty of these babies. They’re made with a one-piece toe cape and cupsole, which eliminates the need for seams.

In fact, this cupsole feels incredibly similar to a vulcanized sole. So, don’t let it scare you off; it’s still grippy as all get out, thanks to a triangle tread sole.

Up next are the internal booties. I know, they sound weird and uncomfortable–that was my first thought, too. But, they’re pretty much a 180, from that expectation.

Your foot is snugly encased, in what can essentially be described as an elastic sock liner. Aside from the ability to go barefoot or without laces, they also keep your foot secure, and eliminate slipping or a loose feeling.

In that same comfort vein, they’re loaded up with a padded collar. Moreover, they add to the shoe’s level-of-stability, along with the tongue’s stabilizing wings.

No regular skate shoe can touch the caliber of these Emericas. Designed by all-time great, Figgy, he describes as shoes, as follow:

I like the basic less-is-more style. I’m not trying to change the game. I’m trying to go with what works. I feel like when i look down, certain shoes are better for certain tricks. In my shoe, the toe just makes you want to kickflip. I look down and it makes me hyped to skate in. I’m addicted!

In the end, his knowledge brought about one of the most low-profile, comfortable, stable skate shoes on the market.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Technical riders.

Thanks to their design, they provide the stability and protection of a cupsole, but maintain the feel of a vulcanized sole–a necessity in technical skateboarding.

Moreover, the internal fit system is the basis for a unique riding experience, which enhances your ability to manipulate the board. Few, if any, other skate shoes can boast that.

Taking them from tough riding, to catching up with the homies is a cinch. You’re looking at one of the most practical skate shoes out there. Slip ’em on, and go.

Also available in: 15+ colors, sizes 5 – 14.

Buy a pair of Emerica Figueroa Skate Shoes here.

6. Lakai Fura Skate Shoe – $27.18+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Insanely high-quality for price – comparable to Nike SBs
  • Vulcanized sole provides grippy feeling underfoot
  • Suede upper is durable enough for tricks, and breaks in for a soft feeling
  • Very little break-in period
  • May run a bit small – consider sizing up

Just like with any industry, when it comes to skate shoes, half-the-time you’re paying for the name–not the quality.

In other words, well-known brands can charge out the nose, for the same-quality shoe as a lesser-known company. So, the most popular brand isn’t always the best.

And that’s where the Lakai Fura Skate Shoe shines.

Lakai Fura Skate Shoe Review

Material: Suede & man-made material
Cut: Low-top
Sole: Vulcanized
Extras: Shock-absorbing EVA insoles

As consumers, we’ve been conditioned to trust “only the best”. While this might work most of the time, it’s often a more-expensive endeavor.

Lakai noticed this disparity in the market, and capitalized on it, by manufacturing incredibly high-quality skate shoes, at a reasonable price.

Since 1999, they’ve maintained a level-of-integrity and respect for the sport, rarely seen in other companies.

The second you put on a pair of Furas, you’ll understand their awesomeness. With almost zero break-in period, they’re comfortable right out-the-box.

Keep in mind, though, they’re manufactured with suede. As such, it takes a bit of time, for the sueded to reach that ever-loved softness.

Moving down the shoe, we see the vulcanized sole. What that means for you, is ultra-responsive riding, on a grippy tread.

On the inside, you’ll find all-out-comfort in the insole, thanks to its shock-absorbing EVA qualities. In other words, impacts won’t feel as severe.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Most riders.

As long as you’re not solely doing flip tricks 24/7, these babies are a solid option. Ideally, they’re built for riders who cruise, or split time between cruising and the park.

The suede upper provides a solid level of durability and stiffness, making it more difficult to rip, than its canvas counterpart.

A vulcanized sole allow you to truly feel the skateboard, and initiate any turns or tricks, with ease.

For the price, you will not find a better pair of skateboarding shoes–guaranteed.

Also available in: 4 other colors, sizes 6.5 – 11.5

Buy a pair of Lakai Fura Skate Shoes here.

7. Vans Classic Slip-Ons – $33.34+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • #1 top-selling women’s skate shoe on Amazon
  • Exceedingly comfortable for any situation – mold to your feet
  • Available in tons of designs
  • Spacious toe box provides comfort, for even wide feet
  • Not ideal for solely-park riding
  • May feel tight at first – gets better once broken-in

Alright, alright, I know–ya got me. Vans were already on this list. But, if were focusing on the best shoes for skateboarding, you want the best best–not just a mixture of brands.

Naturally, that means we also had to include the Vans Classic Slip-Ons.

Vans Classic Slip-Ons Review

Material: Canvas
Cut: Slip-on
Sole: Vulcanized, waffle tread
Extras: Tons of designs

Soooo remember when we discussed the DC Court Graffiks, and it was revealed they’re the best-selling skate shoe on Amazon?

Well, these Vans fall into the same boat; they’re the best-selling women’s skate shoe. In other words, they’re pretty much an amazing choice (regardless of if you’re a guy, girl, or enby!).

When you think of slip-on skate shoes, you think of Vans Classics. They’re made of a typical canvas upper and vulcanized rubber sole.

What that means for your riding, is a shoe that protects your feet, while providing one of the most responsive feelings underfoot. So, manipulating your skateboard’s a breeze.

Just like with any slip-on, there’s a bit of a break-in period. They’ll be stiff at-first and probably squish your toes, but quickly mold to your foot’s shape, for an ultra-customized fit.

Where they stand-out, though, is that they’re an ideal fit for both wide- and narrow-feet. A spacious toe box provides more room, for those with broad feet, while still hugging them in all the right places.

Aside from sheer comfort against your foot, this tightness lays way for non-abrasive wear. Basically, they don’t rub against your feet like many other skate shoes do–you’re looking at blister-free feet.

Even without breaking them in first, you’ll wonder why you haven’t given these..ahem…Classics a shot beforehand.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Any skateboarder, who isn’t a pure park rat.

Because they have vulcanized soles and canvas uppers, they’re geared more towards casual cruising and the occasional trick.

While they’re very durable, once you start consistently going hard in the park, they’ll deteriorate more quickly, than a pair made for super hard skateboarding.

Overall, they provide one of the most-controlled, -comfortable, and classic rides out there. You truly can never go wrong with a pair of these slip-on Vans.

Also available in: 25+ designs (SO. MANY.), sizes 4 – 11.5

Buy a pair of Vans Classic Slip-Ons here.

8. Adidas Seeley Skate Shoe – $29.20+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Fit true-to-size
  • Built to take a beating – abrasion-resistant upper & wraparound midsole
  • Vulcanized sole provides maximum-control
  • Because of their construction, your feet won’t slide around
  • Insoles are not removable
  • Narrower foot bed – may not be ideal for wide-feet

When it comes to Adidas, skateboarding isn’t typically the first thing that comes to mind. Instead, soccer, and other sports are front-of-mind.

Be that as it may, Adidas skateboard shoes are kick butt. That’s why we’re going to look at their Seeley model next.

Adidas Seeley Skate Shoe Review

Material: Synthetic
Cut: Low-top
Sole: Vulcanized, wraparound midsole
Extras: Abrasion-resistant upper

You already know the quality of Adidas’s other sports equipment, and these skateboarding shoes live up to those same expectations.

What makes these bad boys so standout, though, is their sheer durability. If you’ve had problems tearing shoes to shreds within weeks, these should stand up to the test.

The vulcanized sole ensures you’re gripping the board to its fullest extent, giving you ultimate control over your movements.

Because no shoe is safe from the abrasiveness of grip tape and cement, these babies are smooth, and abrasion-resistant.

What’s nice about the brand, is that it fits true-to-size. So, even if you’ve never worn Adidas before, you shouldn’t have to mess around with any weird sizing charts.

Thanks to the way they’re constructed, they grip your socks and hug your feet really well. In other words, they won’t slip off when you’re riding.

It’s worth noting that the insoles are not removable. So, if you need to wear orthotics, or prefer custom insoles, these probably aren’t the shoes for you.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Most skateboarders.

Since they’re built-for-toughness, they’re meant for pretty much any style of riding.

As mentioned above, though, they don’t have removable insoles. On top of that, they’re narrower than some of the other models we’ve looked at.

So, if you have wide feet, you may want to size up, or skip them–it’s no fun riding around with pinched toes, or blisters.

Aside from that, though, they’re a fantastic choice for the majority of skateboarders.

Also available in: 5 other colors, sizes 4 – 14

Buy a pair of Adidas Seeley Skate Shoes here.

9. Globe Motley Mid Shoe – $33.85+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Exceedingly comfortable – wide foot bed
  • Very durable construction – ideal for many types of riding
  • Provide tons of control – vulcanized sole ensures it
  • Made with thin material
  • Small size range
  • Run large – consider sizing down

When it comes to shoes for skateboarding, if there’s one brand that really nails it, it’s Globe. Because of their backwards way of thinking–disrespect what’s established–they can tackle new designs in a fresh light.

That’s why they made my list of the best longboard brands….and why we’re looking at their Motley Mids next.

Globe Motley Mid Review

Material: Leather & textile
Cut: Mid-top
Stitching: Stitch-free
Sole: Vulcanized, wavy tread
Extras: Padded tongue & collar, breathable lining

Globe’s just one of those skateboard brands that knows what they’re doing. They started life as a skate shoe company, and have grown into a powerhouse in the whole vertical.

Like many of the other models on the list, this Globe skate shoe has a vulcanized sole. So, you can really feel the board under your feet. A wavy tread pattern provides a solid grip between your feet and the deck.

Where they really stand out, though, is how thin and low-profile they are, despite a mid-top grade. Moreover, they have breathable, slip-resistant linings, for ultimate comfort.

In that same vein, the tongue and collar are padded, adding to your feet’s happiness. A wider-than-usual cut, ensures they won’t feel pinched.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Anyone interested in a wider skate shoe.

Owing to their construction, they have a more spacious base. So, if you’re concerned about your toes being pinched, or the sides of your feet rubbing, you’re good to go.

That width provides an unparalleled level-of-comfort, when paired with the padded tongue and collar.

Globe skate shoes provide the whole package. Attack the concrete jungle, with ease.

Also available in: 6 other colors, sizes 7 – 12

Buy a pair of Globe Motley Mid Shoes here.

10. DC Heathrow Skate Shoe – $34.09+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Act as a slip-on, despite being lace-ups
  • Insanely comfortable for skateboarding & other activities
  • Made with ballistic nylon – incredibly tough material
  • Removable footbed – can add in orthotics
  • Tongue’s attached to shoe – some people dislike this feeling
  • Run small – consider ordering a half-size-up

Alright, so remember how I said we’re tackling the best of the best skateboard shoes? Well, DC’s back for round 2.

Let’s dig into the Heathrow Skate Shoe’s juicy details.

DC Heathrow Skate Shoe Review

Material: Ballistic nylon, with leather accents
Cut: Low-top
Sole: Synthetic
Extras: Slip on feel, lace look

Most of the shoes we’ve featured on here look like skate shoes. Well, no duh. But, that doesn’t mean there aren’t designs that don’t scream “I LOVE SKATEBOARDING!”

That’s where the Heathrow stands out: It looks like a running shoe, and acts like a slip-on–quite an unusual combination.

While the shape’s pretty easy to discern, it also doubles as an athletic shoe. The slip-on portion’s highlighted by the fact the tongue’s attached, and the laces essentially act as decorations.

If you need to switch out the insoles, you can easily do so with these babies. Or, leave them in; a very comfortable footbed.

Many of the shoes on this list are either canvas or leather of some type, as you’d expect. These babies, however, are built with ballistic nylon and leather accents.

In other words, they’re exceedingly durable in an entirely different way. So, they can really take a beating.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Most skateboarders.

Some people have preferences, such as true lace-ups, rather than slip-ons. In the end, though, these puppies are insanely comfortable, and a fantastic choice.

One thing to keep in mind, is they do run a tad small. So, it’s advised you size up half-a-size, for most accurate fit.

DC has been, and always will be one of the best skate shoe brands out there. No questions asked.

Also available in: 15+ colors, sizes 4 – 14

Buy a pair of DC Heathrow Skate Shoes here.

11. Osiris NYC83 Skate Shoe – $30.99+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Very eye-catching, bright design
  • Incredibly comfortable – insane amounts of padding
  • High-abrasion areas are reinforced, for maximum durability
  • Soles are made to be abrasion-resistant
  • Small size range
  • Run small – order half-size-up

If you know anything about shoes for skating (and it’s totally ok, if you don’t), then you’re probably aware of Osiris’s dominance in color.

Those dudes know how to bust out some bright colors, in a super aesthetically-pleasing way. So, you know we had to include the Osiris NYC83s.

Osiris NYC83 Skate Shoe Review

Material: Snythetic
Cut: High-top
Sole: Synthetic
Extras: Reinforced high-abrasion areas, abrasion-resistant soles

Year-in and year-out, Osiris’s been creating sick, eye-catching shoes. But, without comfort, they’d be nothing more than unusable pieces of art.

Luckily, this brand knows how to do it the right way: Like you’re walking on clouds. Thanks to a significant amount of padding, your feet feel fabulous.

From the sides to the soles, and tongue to collar, you’ll be hard-pressed not to find an area that doesn’t have enhanced-cushioning.

As a high-top shoe, your ankle and foot have a lot more stability, than a low- or even mid-top shoe. So, you can tackle new tricks, without worrying about rolling an ankle.

Just like with any shoe for skateboarding, you’re bound to tear up certain areas more than others. Osiris recognized this industry-wide problem, and tackled it by adding in reinforced fabric, in high-abrasion areas.

On top of that, the soles themselves are abrasion-resistant, too. So, you can ride them hard and (figuratively) put ’em away wet. They’re ready for whatever you throw at them.

Who Would Benefit From These Shoes?

Riders interested in comfort and stability.

Because of their high-top construction, and reinforcement in highly-ripped-up areas, they can take on any riding style, and any level-of-hurt.

On the other hand, they’re constructed in such a way, that they’re insanely comfortable from the get-go–and keep your foot super stable.

So, if you’re concerned about your ankles, or your feet tend not to like other skate shoes, a pair of NYC83s are an immediate “Yes!”

Also available in: 10+ other color combinations, sizes 5 – 12

Buy a pair of Osiris NYC83 Skate Shoes here.

12. NIKE SB Blazer Zoom Skate Shoe – $25.34+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Huge size- & color-range
  • Started life as basketball shoes – transformed to skate shoes, with help of Grant Taylor
  • Nike Zoom in heel, ups the impact-protection
  • Suede material can withstand tons of wear and tear
  • Runs a bit small – consider ordering a half-size-up

Like Adidas, with Nike, skateboarding definitely isn’t the first sport that comes to mind. Heck, it might not even be top 5.

Regardless, though, they’re the masterminds behind one of my favorite skate shoes: The SBs.

NIKE SB Blazer Zoom Review

Material: Suede
Cut: Low-top
Stitching: Very strong
Sole: Volcanized
Extras: Nike Zoom in the heel

Originally released in 1972, this skateboard shoe started off life as a basketball shoe. With the help of pro, Grant Taylor, they’ve transformed into the awesome footwear we know and love.

Many Nike shoes tend to run on the narrow side. These babies, however, have a roomier-than-normal toe box. So, if you’ve stayed away from Nikes for this reason, c’mon back over to the party.

Despite this wider-footbed, it’s advised you still size-up a half-size, just in case.

As a low-cut shoe, they’re not cumbersome, and have a low-profile collar, for a comfortable fit around the ankle.

A Nike Zoom unit is built into the rubber heel, which provides additional support and impact-protection.

Thanks to a suede material, they’re built to withstand a beating. So, if you’re super hard on your shoes, you’ve finally met your match.

And because we all tear through laces, you’ll also receive a back-up set.

Fun fact: If they’re not fitting quite the way you want, toss them into the washing machine, to get out an uncomfortable folds.

Who Would Benefit From These Skateboard Shoes?

Pretty much any skateboarder.

Of course, everyone has their preferences, but given the shape and material, these babies can take on most riding styles, and fit most feet.

Thanks to the input of pro skateboarder, Grant Taylor, there are a few extras that really make this pair of skate shoes really stand out. These include Nike Zoom in the heel, and low-cut collar, for max comfort and impact protection.

There’s a reason Nike’s the top sports brand in the world: They know what works, and make it shine.

Also available in: 20+ colors, sizes 4 – 14

Buy a pair of NIKE SB Blazer Zoom Skate Shoes here.

13. Vans Sk8-Hi Skate Shoes – $29+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Ankles are padded for extra support
  • Vulcanized sole & waffle tread provide tons of control & grip
  • Considered “winter-proof”, so you can wear them year-round
  • Canvas & suede upper increase longevity
  • High-tops aren’t for everyone
  • While durable, not ideal for 24/7 park riding
  • May still need to be waterproofed for winter wear

Oh hey there, Vans again. They really don’t need much of an introduction at this point.

In any event, let’s get on with this Vans Sk8-Hi review.

Vans Sk8-Hi Skate Shoes Review

Material: Canvas/suede
Cut: High-top
Sole: Vulcanized, waffle tread
Extras: Padded ankle

By this point, you should already understand why Vans are at the top of the game. They’ve been producing classics non-stop for years–and they’re just as awesome as they were on their first day of manufacturing.

Vans come in all shapes and sizes. We’ve already covered slip-ons and low-tops, so now it’s time to focus on the infamous high-tops.

These babies have uppers made of a canvas and suede mixture–you get the best of both worlds, even though you’re not Hannah Montana.

When you’re worried about your ankles giving out, you’re not having a good time. That’s why these high-tops are extra supportive, and feature a padded ankle, for maximum comfort.

Stepping on your skateboard, you’ll realize how well you’re able to maneuver it, owing to the vulcanized sole, and waffle tread.

This lays grounds for the deadliest combination out there: Extreme control and stability, with unmatched levels-of-grip.

What’s more, is they’re considered winter-proof sneakers. In other words, you can wear them during the cold months, without regretting your choice in footwear.

Tearing up skate shoes is easy. With these Vans? Not so much.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Riders interested in an all-season shoe.

The combination of canvas and suede, along with a padded ankle, and vulcanized sole, provide an incredibly durable shoe, ready to take on any weather condition.

So, if you’re super hard on your shoes, or are looking for a winterized skateboard shoe, you won’t find anything that beats a Vans Sk8-Hi.

Also available in: 20+ colors, size 4 – 14

Buy a pair of Vans Sk8-Hi Skate Shoes here.

14. DC Evan Smith Hi Skate Shoe – $39.84+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Exceedingly comfortable fit – wider-than-usual
  • High-top stability – still maintains low-profile
  • Vulcanized sole & Impact-I Inflexion provide impact-absorbing qualities
  • Very easy to manipulate the board
  • High-top, but not super high-tops

What’s up, my name’s Becca, and I can’t seem to get off this DC shoes kick. (Ok, I know exactly why: They produce so many top-notch models, ya can’t just choose one.)

Either way, it’s time to look at the Evan Smith Hi model.

DC Evan Smith Hi Skate Shoe Review

Material: Textile
Cut: High-top
Sole: Vulcanized, Impact-I Inflexion tech, toe cap
Extras: Ortholite sockliner

Of course, this isn’t the first high-top skate shoe we’ve seen. Compared to the Sk8-Hi from above, though, it has a lower-profile ankle.

But, that doesn’t negate the stability it provides during a trick or kick. And, a spongy interior surrounds your ankle and foot, for an ultra-comfortable fit.

As a vulcanized sole, you’ll feel the extreme control beneath your feet. It’s practically like you’re riding barefoot….without the torn up skin.

But, there’s an additional layer of awesomeness: The Impact-I Inflexion technology. Because vulcanized soles don’t provide much in the way of shock-absorption, this tech significantly ups the protection of the foot, and cushions any impacts.

What that means for you as a rider, is the fact that you’ll still feel that same gumminess of a vulcanized sole, with the benefits of a cupsole.

When you’re riding, you don’t want your feet to be sliding around. A set of ortholite sockliners mitigate any slipping, for maximum foot-staying-power.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Riders with wide feet.

DCs are well-known for their comfort, across their many different lines. This particular model is wider-than-usual, and thus a phenomenal option for those who require more spacious toe boxes.

Despite the fact they’re a high-top, they still maintain a relatively low-profile. With tons of ankle support, they don’t feel suffocating.

The vulcanized sole and Impact-I Inlfexion technology provide the stability of a cupsole, and control of a vulcanized one.

Again and again, DC shows us how magnificent they are at creating skate shoes.

Also available in: 4 other colors, sizes 6 – 14

Buy a pair of DC Evan Smith Hi Skate Shoe here.

15. Supra Skytop Skate Shoe – $61.91+

best skate shoes


Pros: Cons:
  • Very fashion-forward silhouette – super-high-top
  • Incredibly comfortable construction – provide lots of stability
  • Mesh sock liner keeps your feet in place
  • Leather material takes a lot to crease it
  • Definitely a “look” – not everyone’s cup of tea
  • A bit more expensive than some of the other models

It’s actually kind of mind-boggling how many skateboard shoe brands share a similar name to an entirely different company.

Supra footwear falls into that same category. While it does have literally the exact same name as the well-loved racing Toyota, it’s a different thing entirely.

You’re going to love the Skytops.

Supra Skytop Skate Shoe Review

Material: Leather & synthetic
Cut: High-top
Sole: Vulcanized
Extras: Mesh sock liner, mesh collar & tongue

If you grew up a skateboard fan in the ’90s (or were exposed to Tony Hawk Pro Skater games), then you probably know who Chad Muska is.

Dude was at the top of his game for a long time, and is the genius behind the Supra Skytops. Originally released in ’07, it was was truly revolutionary design.

As a continued legacy in Supra’s lineup, this simple shoe took a modern silhouette, and increased the quality significantly.

You can tell they’re not just high-tops, they’re super high-tops…hence the name. Thankfully, there’s a pull-tab on the back, for easy on-and-off.

Despite the fact that they’re made with leather, it takes a lot crease these babies, especially where the foot arches.

That ever-loved vulcanized rubber provides an extra-grippy feeling. On the inside, though, your feet stay put because of the mesh sock liner.

To add to the comfort, the footbed’s made with a molded polyurethane, while the collar and tongue boast a mesh material.

Mr. Muska’s pulled off the seemingly-impossible: He’s created a well-loved super high-top that’s remained top-of-the-market…for more-than-a-decade.

Who Would Benefit From These Skate Shoes?

Fashion-forward skateboarders.

It’s clear this cut isn’t for everyone–and that’s ok. The Skytops provide an incredibly unique silhouette, without diminishing those well-loved skate qualities.

Made with a number of high-gradey materials, including leather, molded PU, and mesh, they work together to form one of the most comfortable shoes out there.

Supras are super. Skytops skyrocket your skills. Snag some Supera Skytyps today.

Also available in: 4 other colors, sizes 4 – 16

Buy a pair of Supra Skytop Skate Shoe here.

Heavy, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to Amazon. Our product recommendations are guided solely by our editors. We have no relationship with manufacturers.
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x