Looking for some new skateboarding shoes? When buying skate shoes, you can get lost in the sea of brands, colors, gimmicks and prices. Collected here is a list of the top 10 skateboarding shoes out there, for one reason or another. Many of these skate shoes have reviews on the site, to find out more about the shoe - and all have links to the manufacturer's site to read more.
1. Fallen Footwear
Fallen makes incredible skate shoes. Jamie Thomas owns the company, and has made it clear that he doesn't want to simply make more skateboarding shoes - he want to make high quality premium skate shoes that look great and provide everything you need. Plus, for you planet-conscious skaters out there, Fallen makes shoes free of animal products. Take a look at the Fallen Troopers - easily the coolest looking skate shoes I've tested to date. And they skate well, too! Fallens are some of my favorite skate shoes to wear.
2. Vans Skateboarding Shoes
Vans has been around since the beginning, and along the way they've learned how to make great skate shoes. Vans skateboarding shoes are some of the best, easily. From the classic canvas Vans classic slip ons (which I don't recommend for skating unless you know what you're doing, or don't mind replacing them soon) to Vans beefier models, like Geoff Rowley's Rowley XL2s or Dustin Dollin's No Skools. Vans is a core skateboarding company - you can rest comfortably knowing you are buying quality when you buy Vans.
3. Globe Shoes
Globe is an Australian skateboarding shoe company that creates great skateboarding shoes with innovative features. Honestly, these top 3 skate shoe companies each make great shoes - it's hard to rank between these top 3. My favorite is the now outdated Globe CT IV - Chet Thomas signature model, if you can find 'em. Recently, they've come out with models like the Vagrant (looks sweet, with a pre-worn style but built to last), or the Finale (in classic and a more sporty look). Gallaz, skateboarding shoes made for girls and women skateboarders.
4. DC Skateboarding Shoes
DC Shoe Co USA makes some good shoes, though over the last few years I've heard a lot of complaints about them being too mainstream, or that the quality of DC has gone down. The mainstream problem is up to you, but I haven't seen a drop in quality at all. With , "Super Suede", and years of making excellent skate shoes, they know what they are doing. DC also has an H2Zero line - shoes treated to block out water, snow and slush, with extra tread. Perfect for snowskates and snow days. Check out the DC H2Zero Alias.
Etnies have a bright, quick, sleek look, and a skate team with riders like Rune Glifberg, Ryan Sheckler and Elissa Steamer. Etnies do tend to come with wimpy laces, but that's not a good enough reason to not get a pair. Mostly, Etnies skate shoes work well and last long enough to not tick off your parents or wife when you need to replace 'em. Etnies also has great girl's skateboarding shoes, and etnies dumps a lot of money back into the community, giving away tons of shoes every year to the homeless in Southern California.
Osiris. Osiris skate shoes aren't my favorites so much lately, but they do make some of the best puffy-style skateboarding shoes you can get. Plus, they have their "private reserve" line, which are regular models, the most popular ones, made with better materials and some insole art. If you want Osiris skateboarding shoes, I recommend paying the extra for the private reserve shoes (though really, it's not that much more). The Ruger is pretty nice, and so is the Chino Low.
Emerica makes good skate shoes, and runs a strong skateboarding team with pros like Andrew Reynolds, Jerry Hsu and Ed Templeton. Skateboarding shoes like the Emerica Reynolds 3 certainly help, with its solid proven design. Emerica also has some strong designs and style - try the Kirchart 4s, and see what I mean. Emerica is closely related to Etnies, so if you like one, you might like the other.
Adio has a ridiculous team. Tony Hawk, Bam Margera, Shaun White, Jeremy Wray ... the list keeps going. But what about the shoes? They're good. Adios are well built and highly skateable - it's usually a bad idea to base your purchases off of who endorses the product, but you know that guys with names this big don't want to be associated with crud. Check 'em out. Their pro model skateboarding shoes all come named after the rider, then a version number. That's it. So, check out Adios and give 'em a shot. You should be happy.
9. Nike SB
Nike Skateboarding (SB) shoes have been bashed for being ugly, Nike has been bashed for edging in on skateboarding, and meanwhile the Nike skateboarding team has been growing, their shoes have been getting better and more refined. The bottom line is, Nike knows how to make shoes, and Nike skateboarding shoes are well made with great features. The Nike Dunk is still the most popular Nike SB shoe all over the planet, while shoes like Paul Rodriguez's P-Rod II looks good and skates very well. Nike also has another arm that makes skateboarding shoes - Nike 6.0.
I-Path has an Earthy style all their own. Check out the I-Path Cats - they claim they're the most comfortable skateboarding shoes around. Full suede upper stained to natural browns with strong stitching and cord laces, the I-Path Cats look almost like moccasins. And that's the idea. If you're looking for a more quiet, earthy, or comfortable style, check out I-Path's lineup of skateboarding shoes.