Needless to say, it’s a footwear prerequisite. Yet for some reason, too many guys end up wearing subpar shoes made of subpar materials. It’s a problem and I aim to fix it—or at the very least, present you with the six most comfortable walking shoes for men and let you take it from there.
Turns out, some of the best walking shoes are also running shoes. Or shoes designed to keep you comfortable on your feet for long periods of time. Don’t pigeonhole them, is basically what I’m getting at. And don’t even think about comparing them to those clunky orthopedic monstrosities in your grandpa’s closet.
Nope, I wouldn’t do you like that. Not only are these comfortable walking shoes for men, but they’re handsome enough to wear almost anywhere. As long as it’s during the day. And you’re not on a date. Or wearing a suit. You get it.
Just trust your sartorial instincts and these cozy, lightweight sneakers will serve you and your feet well for years to come.
To find the most comfortable walking shoes for men, I began by researching dozens of brands and their materials, weight, customer reviews, and photos. The resulting six are the best of the best based on factors that include but aren’t limited to comfort, style, price, and materials used. Edging out the competition is my top overall pick of the Wahts Norris Lightweight Runner, followed closely by the budget-friendly New Balance Fresh Foam Classic.
Our Top Picks
Why they’re great: Italian suede: comfortable. Chunky Vibram sole: comfortable. Cushy leather lining: you guessed it. Wahts’ Norris Lightweight Runner is tip-to-heel luxury disguised as an everyday shoe. It comes in seven colors that you can mix and match with whatever’s going on in your closet. From walking the dog to grabbing brunch with some friends, the Norris will keep you looking and feeling right.
How they feel: Not only is Vibram a super durable material that’ll last for years, it also offers incredible comfort. Couple that with the supple suede upper and you’ve got yourself a pair of workhorse shoes that have no business being as comfortable as they are.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: Even though this look has been back in the conversation for a while now, the Norris’s chunky soles are a specific look that’s not going to be a winner for everyone.
Material: Italian Suede | Sole Material: Vibram Rubber | Sizes Available: 6-13 | Colors Available: 7
Why they’re great: A Certified B Corporation, Rio de Janeiro-based Cariuma is committed to sustainable sourcing and manufacturing processes. If you’re looking for a stylish, understated, eco-friendly — and yes, comfortable — pair of sneakers, you’ve found them in Cariuma’s Salvas. Not only will these versatile workhorses make for a great pair of travel shoes, they’ll also serve you well with jeans, shorts, or the occasional pair of chinos in almost any casual situation.
How they feel: The leather uppers will break in and conform to the contours of your feet over time. The flat rubber soles offer a firm, sturdy feel without sacrificing comfort. The Salvas is a solid option if you’re looking for something that straddles the form and function line.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: If you’re a walking shoe connoisseur (which feels like it should be a thing), you’ll likely be turned off by this pair’s streamlined sole. Translation: It lacks chunk.
Material: 100% Leather | Sole Material: 100% Rubber | Sizes Available: 5-13 | Colors Available: 12
Why they’re great: The subtle details of
How they feel: The chunky rubber soles provide a cushy landing with each step. Meanwhile, the polyester and buttery soft suede uppers keep things nice and comfortable up top.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: Like most things worth splurging on, the Rush Bee Bird Sneaker is anything but an everyday shoe. This pair is best for those who are willing to keep them on standby until the right outfit shows up to pair them with. If that’s not you, you may be better off with a less specific pick.
Material: 77% Leather/Suede, 23% Polyester | Sole Material: 80% Rubber, 20% Recycled Rubber | Sizes Available: 7-13 | Colors Available: 3
Why they’re great: When you hear the words “most comfortable walking shoes for men,” you already know what’s coming next. That’s right—New Balance. Sure, the iconic brand manufactures a mean dad shoe and some sneakers designed to keep portly gents happy. But it also makes these: Fresh Foam Classics. Behold, if you will, a budget-friendly modernized classic with a lightweight mesh upper and a squishy ¾-inch sole that’ll keep you bobbing and weaving your way through the day in comfort and style.
How they feel: If you’re looking for a lightweight walking shoe, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the Fresh Foam Classic. You’ll barely know it’s there.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: With over 50 colorways to choose from, it’s tough to find an aesthetic flaw with these guys. That said, if you’re a serious walker or runner, you may find the Fresh Foam Classic lacks the structure and ankle support you’re looking for.
Material: Synthetic/Mesh | Sole Material: 100% Polyester | Sizes Available: 7-18 | Colors Available: 54
Why they’re great: I’ve put more than a few pairs of Ghosts to the test over the years. The longstanding favorite from Brooks can handle a punishing number of miles and live to tell the tale. They’re lightweight. They’re comfortable. They’re reliable. And if they’re capable of being on the receiving end of that many running miles, they’re damn sure capable of being your next great walking shoes.
How they feel: It bears repeating that these fan favorites are light as air. The breathable synthetic uppers provide an impressive range of motion while the sturdy rubber soles maintain a cushy yet supportive feel.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: At the end of the day, this is a running shoe that looks like a running shoe. If you put comfort above all, go for it. If you prefer a mix of form and function, know that the Brooks Ghost prioritizes the latter.
Material: Fabric & Synthetic | Sole Material: 100% Rubber | Sizes Available: 7-15 | Colors Available: 30
Why they’re great: Allbirds. You know Allbirds. Good for the environment. Great for your feet. Just… just so comfortable. If you happen to be among the uninitiated, though, you’ll want to start with the Tree Runners. These casual everyday sneakers are absurdly lightweight and can be worn pretty much anywhere.
How they feel: Tree Runners are Allbirds classics for a reason. They’re supportive in all the right places and provide enough cushion and breathability to keep you comfortable, even if you’re on your feet all day.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: Allbirds’ Tree Runners are another function-over-form pair. If you’re not looking to make a fashion statement, there are no wrong turns here.
Material: Eucalyptus Fiber | Sole Material: Sugarcane, Carbon-Negative EVA | Sizes Available: 8-14 | Colors Available: 11
Buying Considerations For Comfortable Walking Shoes
The most comfortable walking shoes for men should be—wait for it—comfortable. But as simple as the concept may be, no two feet are created equal. Before picking up a pair, try on several to make sure they conform to the contours of your feet and have the weight and feel you’re looking for. Prioritize lightweight, durable shoes that are wide enough for your feet and offer cushioning in all the right places.
The right walking-shoe materials for you depend on your lifestyle and what you plan on doing in them. If you live an active lifestyle and tend to combine walking with running or other activities, a Vibram sole and lightweight mesh upper will likely serve you well. If you fancy yourself a man about town (but not at the expense of comfort), a leather upper coupled with a soft-yet-sturdy sole will look and feel great.
The second you started reading this article is the second you started thinking about the style vs. comfort trade off, right? Sure, you’re typically working with some chunky soles and uninspired athleisure vibes when it comes to the most comfortable walking shoes for men. Now more than ever, though, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to cozy, stylish sneakers. Consider your lifestyle and style-style before choosing a pair. But don’t stress—it’s the golden age of dad shoes.
Why You Should Trust Us
As a fashion and grooming writer at FashionBeans, I compare, test, and research the products that make a gentleman a gentleman. If it can be worn, carried, or used in a way that elevates your look and feel, I’m into it. For this review, I pored over trusted sources, dozens of brands, materials, features, and customer reviews to understand what makes the most comfortable walking shoes for men. After comparing over 40 pairs, I chose the resulting six based on considerations like comfort, style, materials used, and value for money. Ultimately, I want to see everyone find the most cloud-like sneakers for them.
Soft, lightweight, and breathable. Start there if you’re looking for the most comfortable walking shoes for men. Better yet, start with my top pick of the Wahts Norris and save yourself the trouble. The chunky Vibram soles, Italian suede uppers, and leather-lined collars are as cozy as they are stylish.
The walking shoe that’s best for you is the one that allows your feet ample breathing room while also making you feel like you could move mountains with your mobility. Beyond those very personal considerations, stick to breathable uppers, cushy soles and durable materials to support your feet for the long haul.
Not only is it okay to wear running shoes for walking, it’s typically your feets’ best bet. If the sneakers are durable and comfortable enough to run in, you can bet they’re durable and comfortable enough to walk in. And in this golden age of foot sheaths, you can even find comfortable dress shoes that can take whatever you can dish out.
A general rule of thumb is to replace your walking shoes every six months to a year. That said, it all depends on how often you wear them and how quickly your treads wear out. If your walks start to get uncomfortable or your shoes lack traction, it may be time to invest in another pair.