Defining a sneaker boot is surprisingly tricky because it gets into fundamental, existential issues over what makes a sneaker a sneaker and a boot a boot. Perhaps it’s best to follow the guidance of the late Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, who, in his concurring opinion on Jacobellis v. Ohio, wrote of obscenity: “I know it when I see it.” That’s why, when picking out the best sneaker boots for men, we stuck to our instincts and focused on the styles we like and the brands we trust.
Still, while we can’t apply a strict definition to sneaker boots, it’s at least worth attempting to define the two halves of this category. The most characteristic feature of sneakers is a flat rubber sole, as opposed to a leather sole or heeled lug sole. Most sneakers started as athletic shoes, though the rise of the dress sneaker and minimalist white sneakers adds plenty of exceptions to that rule.
A boot, meanwhile, is often leather and has a shaft that covers at least the ankle. However, things can get murky when you get into technical outdoors shoes. There are running sneakers with lug soles and boots with flat rubber soles. The rising popularity of trail running has made lightweight, boot-like sneakers more popular, which is why many hiking shoes look like boots and sneakers. The outdoorsy nature trend doesn’t seem to be letting up, so we’re betting that technical-looking hiking shoes will remain popular even on paved streets. Some of our favorite sneaker boots come from hiking brands like Hoka and The North Face.
With sneaker boots, the most common configuration is a boot upper on a sneaker sole. On the other hand, you can find options that take a sneaker upper and stack it on top of a lug sole or work boot wedge sole. Converse makes great examples of that style. This is all to say that a sneaker boot can be a lot of things, and we’ve found a lot of great options. These are the stylish sneaker boots men should consider.
Read More: The 26 Best Men’s Sneakers
1. Everlane The Desert Boot
It was a while before Everlane got into men’s footwear, but their venture has been a welcome one. Their shoes deliver style and the brand’s commitment to ethical production and good value. This desert boot features a genuine suede upper with a white rubber outsole. The boot comes in two shades of brown, as well as black and gray.
2. Adidas Terrex Free Hiker COLD.RDY Boots
Adidas’ Terrex line features technical-inspired hiking shoes that would also look great on the street. Terrex shoes also have features like GORE-TEX waterproofing and Continental rubber soles. The Free Hiker has a sporty outdoors design with a zip-front upper to quickly put them on and take them off. Plus, the shoes are partially made with recycled materials.
3. SeaVees Maslon Desert Boot Sur
BEST LEATHER BOOT
SeaVees has a beachy vibe similar to Vans, so it’s not surprising both brands were founded in the mid-1960s in Southern California. SeaVees was shuttered for decades before being revived in 2008. Their return is welcome because they make some of the most stylish canvas shoes and this sneaker-inspired desert boot. It’s made with an oiled leather upper and has a traditional rubber sneaker sole.
4. Del Toro Men’s Suede Chelsea Sneaker
For a truly luxurious take on the Chelsea boot sneaker, turn to Del Toro, a footwear brand that manufactures its shoes in Italy. These shoes are made with one-piece suede uppers and a rubber sole. The black and navy shoes have matching soles, while the brown suede shoe sits atop a black sole. A pop of color comes in the form of the red heel tab.
5. Nike Air Force 1 Boot
The Air Force 1 is easily one of the most iconic sneaker styles in history, but this shoe makes us glad they’re willing to mess with the classics. The olive and brown coloring adds an outdoor-inspired look. The shoes are made from leather and feature an air-cushioned sole for comfort.
6. Chuck Taylor Crafted Boot
With its all leather upper, wedge sole and speed hook laces, this shoe is arguably closer to a boot than a sneaker, and Converse bills it as such. But since the design obviously nods to the classic Chuck Taylor silhouette, we think these count as sneakers, too. It comes in white or black and uses unisex sizing, like most Converse shoes.
7. Chuck Taylor All Star Lugged 2.0
BEST LIGHTWEIGHT SHOE
If the Crafted Boot from Converse leans a little too far in the boot direction, consider the lugged sole All-Star, which mashes up a canvas Chuck Taylor upper with a sturdy lug sole. It comes in black or white, but if that’s too plain for you, you can customize the uppers and outsoles with a different color or even a leopard print.
8. Hoka Speedgoat Mid 2 GTX Trail Run Shoe
BEST PERFORMANCE SHOE
Hoka’s Speedgoat Mid 2 GTX is a trail running shoe built with GORE-TEX to handle wet terrain, while the Vibram sole ensures a secure footing. It’s one of the most technical shoes on this list and is relatively lightweight, so if you want a sneaker boot that can handle rugged terrain, this is a good one.
9. The North Face Men’s Larimer Mid Waterproof Boots
The North Face’s sneaker boot is a solid basic boot for an economical price, and it features an upper made from waterproof suede (yes, suede) and ballistic nylon. The flat non-heeled sole adds the comfort and ease of a sneaker, while the gray colorway is easy to style with any pair of pants or shorts.