The best slip-on sneakers for men are more chilled-out than a Whole Foods produce section. First and foremost—they don’t have laces! By simply doing away with that stuffy formality, they become shoes you can wear whenever (and with whatever) you want: chinos and jeans if your office skews relaxed, wild-style track pants when you’re running to grab the last bunch of beefsteak tomatoes from said produce section, or a killer swimsuit on your next trip to the beach. Their low-profile design ensures easy styling when you’ve got better things to think about—like, say, finding the perfect patch of sand to plant your beach chair.
But not all slip-on sneakers for men lean as casual as you might expect. Looking to dress down your summer tailoring? Chances are there’s a buttery-soft, made-in-Italy version with your name on it, and chances are it’s on this list. (Still don’t think you can wear them with a suit? Just ask Frank Ocean.) Below are 15 GQ-approved pairs available to buy right now, each one expressly designed to send your lace-ups the way of the dodo—and help you conquer the post-work grocery rush while your competitors are still untying their dress shoes.
The All-Around Best Slip-On Sneakers
What do surfers, punk rockers, and Frank Ocean all have in common? An undying love for Vans slip-ons, the ne plus ultra of the genre since the brand introduced them in the late ‘70s. Five years ago, we dubbed the checkerboard version one of the best slip-on sneakers ever made, and it’s hard to see that honorific going up for grabs any time soon. Affordable, widely available, and effortlessly, undeniably cool, they’re title-holders for a reason—and if you want to make like Frank, a fresh pair is still one of the easiest ways to imbue a suit with a touch of laid-back SoCal swagger.
The Outdoors-Ready Slip-On Sneakers
Just because you’re heading out into the wilderness doesn’t mean you need to lace-up like a park ranger. Merrell is no stranger to advanced summertime shoes, but the brand’s Jungle Mocs (yes, those Jungle Mocs) are as functional as they are swerve-y. They’re designed with the same kind of features as your best hiking boots but without all the bulk, so you can bring a little bit of cool-guy cred to your next camping trip. If all that sounds like a bit much, chill out: you can also rock ’em to grab a $6 latte when you’re back in the city.
The Old-School Slip-On Sneakers
Sure, these are technically mules, not true-blue slip-ons. But if you’re still clinging to your old-school lace-ups, backless versions of them abound. The best of the bunch might be Converse’s drop-top Chucks, which offer the same legendary silhouette you know and love minus the hard labor of actually lacing and unlacing them each time you need to run out the door. Like the convertible version of your favorite sports car, they take something already great and make it more summer-y, all while letting the wind blow around your, uh, ankles.
The Wildly Luxurious Slip-On Sneakers
The Row is famous (and famously beloved) for taking the trappings of the good life—blanket-soft cashmere sweaters, belted trench coats, perfectly-cut pleated pants—and streamlining them to near-anonymity. So it follows that the brand’s slip-ons are just as much about what isn’t there as what is: no flashy designer logos, no garish pops of color, only buttery suede uppers and a creamy rubber sole. In other words, they’re blue-chip sneakers ready to accompany you to your pal’s next gallery opening—or swank up your shoe rack when you get back home.
The Extremely Right-Now Slip-On Sneakers
EVA sneakers, in all their spongy comfort, are enjoying a serious moment. Take a gander through any shop worth its weight in hyped-up kicks and you’re bound to encounter at least one riff on the material—from the OGs at Crocs, say, or the luxe loungewear whizzes at Fear of God and Yeezy. But Alyx’s white-hot slip-on might be the Platonic version of the form. Made out of an ultra-sleek rubber foam, it shares more in common with a sculptural objet than the sneakers it rubs toe-boxes with—if a sculptural objet was as comfy as your favorite pair of Birks.
Plus 9 More Slip-Ons We Love