If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, SPY.com may receive an affiliate commission.
Many fashion trends are hard to explain. Who knows why certain fashions get so popular when they are often so unmoored from whatever else is going on at the time. But the ascendant popularity of men’s mules makes sense right now. Because bending down to properly fit your shoe to your foot is so two years ago.
Today, modern men’s fashion is all about comfort, from the latest athleisure brands to comfortable t-shirts and dad shoes. These popular slip-on shoes aren’t just about comfort, however. The best mules can also be a stylish addition to casual and formal outfits, and there are a ton of stylish mules to choose from in 2022.
Keep scrolling to see the best mules for men to wear right now, with a wide range of options from Adidas and Birkenstock to Gucci and Balenciaga.
What Are Mules? They’re the Perfect Hybrid Shoes
The best mules have been a closet staple for women for a long time, but men are finally catching up to the appeal of this laid-back style. When many of us were spending more time at home, there was a real value to shoes that were versatile enough to wear around the house and on a daily sanity walk. Now, we don’t want to give up our comfy slip-ons, and so men’s mules are here to stay.
So what are mules? This is a hybrid shoe style that’s halfway between a full clog and sandals. They feature a closed toe but an open heel, and with rare exceptions, there are no laces or straps to keep your feet in place. The best mules can be made from anything: leather, suede, rubber, textiles and synthetic materials.
Mules for men have been growing in popularity for a while now, and many of the most popular options today arguably draw their inspiration from three shoes in particular, which have spearheaded the popularity of the style — the Birkenstock Boston, the Gucci Horsebit backless loafer and the Crocs Clog. (Two out of three of these shoes can be found below, and you’ll have to keep scrolling to find out which style didn’t make the cut in our guide to the best men’s mules of 2022.)
The Birkenstock Boston is a stylish, hippie-ish shoe made of suede with a comfortable cork footbed. On the dressier end, Gucci’s iconic horse-bit loafer has gotten a louche upgrade in the form of a backless style, a look that’s simultaneously so luxurious and so casual that it feels like the kind of shoe you’d wear in a suite at the Chateau Marmont. Finally, there’s the dark horse of the bunch, Crocs, which are technically considered clogs, a close cousin of the mule. They’re a decidedly ugly shoe that’s gained a remarkable amount of fashion clout. All of these shoes radically diverge in design, yet they all have comfort in common.
Much like the animal it shares a name with, the mule is an interesting hybrid of two different things. Many men’s mules combine traditional outdoor shoe styles with details from house slippers. The best mules for men will be made from luxurious materials like leather that make it impossible not to want to wear them outside the house. And because men’s sneakers are still dominant, you can even find backless takes on popular styles from brands like Adidas and Vans. As great as all of these shoes are around the house, they’ll be even better for your post-pandemic hangs.
The Best Mules for Men
Keep scrolling to see the best men’s mules of the year.
We scoured the web to bring you some of our favorite men’s mules you can buy online right now, with styles and prices to suit everyone. From $30 sports slippers to designer mules you can wear to the office, we’ve got you (half) covered.
1. Birkenstock Boston Soft Footbed
If you’re going to buy a single mule, make it the Birkenstock Boston. It may be a little adventurous if you were raised on a fashion diet of simple sneakers and dressy boots, but the Boston is enough of a classic that you’ll be able to work it into your wardrobe — it wears well with jeans, work pants and it can be worn with shorts, too. This shoe has a soft cork footbed and a supple suede upper. You can also choose leather options from this listing.
2. Greats The Foster Slipper
Greats built their brand making the kinds of sneakers you could wear with a suit, but they just so happen to make one of the best casual slippers around. The Foster slipper is a stylish option with a nylon upper and a thick rubber sole. It’s built for indoor wear, but it’s a great option to wear around town, too. True to their commitment to sustainability, the upper is made from recycled nylon and the sole is made from natural rubber.
3. Gucci Elea Slip-On Mules
We love these Gucci slippers, but good luck finding the red colorway pictured below in stock. Fortunately, the Gucci Elea Slippers also come in Black and Mystic White, which are much easier to find. These designer mules have a rubber upper and rubber sole, and the iconic GG Gucci symbol is perforated on the upper. They’re not as expensive as you might think either, and you can order these summer shoes for under $500 — while they’re in stock!
4. Vince Alonzo Suede Slippers
Last year, SPY included Vince’s stylish Alonzo 2 suede slippers in our guide to the best men’s mules of 2021, but this year we’re featuring the brand’s original Alonzo slippers instead. There’s a very good reason for that: if you head to Saks Off 5th (the discount site for Saks Fifth Avenue), you can save 44% on these shoes. These slippers from Vince come in a few different shades of suede, and at this price, they’re the perfect laidback mules for summer.
5. Reebok Beatnik Shoes
The Reebok Beatnik Shoes were originally released on August 17, 2021, and you can buy these new, effortlessly cool men’s mules right now on Reebok’s website. These mules are topped in a quilted upper that brings a camper sleeping bag-esque kind of vibe to the backless design. Instead of being fully backless, though, the shoes are complete with a buckled strap to keep your feet snug inside at all times. We love these in orange, but there are tons more colorways to check out.
Best of all, Reebok has slashed prices on its Beatnik shoes for the spring season.
6. Vans Checkerboard Slip-on Mule
Speaking of Vans, there’s a good chance that if you own canvas sneakers, you sometimes step on the backs to wear them around, instead of actually slipping them on the right way. This slip-on mule from Vans makes it easier by doing away with the back of the shoe entirely. Vans also make mule versions of their other iconic sneakers like the Authentic and the Old Skool. It’s worth noting that these are unisex, so the sizing is limited in larger men’s sizes.
7. Crocs Classic Clog
However you feel about them, it’s clear that Crocs aren’t going anywhere. For the record: we love our Crocs here at SPY. The best part about these clogs is that they allow you to show off your personality. You can choose your favorite color, a fun tie-dye pattern or use Crocs Jibbitz charms to decorate your footwear. Unlike most of the shoes on this list, these have an ankle strap for added support.
Read More: Our Favorite Crocs for 2022
8. The North Face Men’s ThermoBall™ Traction V Mules
The North Face’s mules have something of a cult following, and they offer the perfect blend of affordability, everyday comfort and style. They look like a puffer coat for your feet (and they basically are) and come in a bunch of stylish colors. The upper is made from the company’s ThermoBall™ Eco insulation, and the outsoles are made with high-traction rubber. That means these mules are rugged enough to take on camping trips and other outdoor adventures. Plus, they look cool.
9. Balenciaga Track Mule Sneakers
BEST HIGH FASHION
Want to turn heads with your footwear? Then you’ll want to splurge on these designer mules from Balenciaga, which recently surpassed Gucci as the new “it” luxury brand. The Balenciaga Track Mule Sneakers are unlike any other mules, and they’ll earn you fashion points and double takes wherever you go. They’re as expensive as you expect them to be, but if you want only the best mules for your feet, then head to Saks Fifth Avenue ASAP.
10. Adidas Adilette Clog
The Adilette Clogs were inspired by classic Adidas sports slides, and they have a contoured EVA footbed that will conform to your foot shape over time. The colorful upper features perforations for added breathability, and these sports-inspired clogs are perfect for summer days on the boat, beach or dock. We love the bright blue colorway pictured below, but the black-and-white colorway is also striking.
11. Sperry Hemp Moc-Slider Mules for Men
BEST RESORT WEAR
As travel goes back to normal and festival season kicks into high gear, resort wear for men is more popular than ever before. We love these super laid-back mules from Sperry, which feature a hemp-based upper and soft terry cloth inner lining for added comfort. Best of all, the EVA outsole ensures that these mules will only become more comfortable as time goes on.
12. KOIO Fuori Mules
Cool, comfortable and luxurious. What more could you need? The KOIO Fuori Mules should be on everyone’s shoe rack right now. These mules are handcrafted in Italy from a soft, handsome-looking suede everybody will look good in. Each mule has a cushioned footbed that morphs to your sole over time. They’re complete with a top buckle for added fashion.
13. Deer Stags Winston Mules
BEST CAMO PRINT
Camo isn’t going out of style anytime soon, and you can find these super-affordable slip-on shoes for men at Zappos. Even though these mules do come in other colors, we love the camo print. Don’t let the low price tag fool you — these men’s mules are made from genuine leather.
14. Steve Madden Dazling Men’s Mules
BEST DRESS MULES
Looking for footwear you can wear into the office or to more formal events? Then go with Steve Madden’s Dazling mules, which come in a handsome tan suede or classic black leather. Despite the sophisticated design and horsebit accents, these men’s mules aren’t too expensive.
15. Skechers Sport Men’s Equalizer Coast to Coast Mule
BEST DAD SHOES
Men’s mules can be a little dorky — in a good way. So lean into the normcore aesthetic and rock full-on dad shoes, like these mules from Skechers. These sports mules can be worn on a casual hike and during other summer adventures.
16. FitFlop SHUV Leather Mules
With three layers of cushioning at the bottom, the SHUV Leather Mules are some of the most comfortable we’ve seen. But once you slip them on, you’re unlikely to want to take them off. At the toes, expect medium support to help you push off when you walk, in the middle, you’ll feel a soft material to maximize coziness, and at the heel, your foot will experience a firmer cushioning for impact. Not only that, but these leather mules are seriously good-looking. They come in a deep black color and look as if they were sculpted by hand.