Crop tops. Dreamy SoulCycle collaborations. Dayglo Leggings. With every new week, there’s a new trend we have our eye on, and this week it’s slip-on sneakers. They’re making a comeback, and I’m not just talking the Vans or Keds that you used to rock in 1998 (although those are poppin’ back up, too). Big-name favorites like Jordan, APL, and Adidas are releasing their own easy-to-wear styles, all of which are perfect for traveling and some—even meant for light activity.
“If they’re done properly, skipping laces can really elevate the look of the shoe,” says Adam Goldston, co-founder of APL, whose wildly popular Techloom Bliss slip-on comes in just about every colorway you could imagine, and happens to be their No. 1 seller. “We try to leave as little to chance as possible when we actually release a new silhouette, and that’s done by having an open dialogue with our customers, followers, and supporters.”
Unlike chunky sneakers, which definitely fit a certain type of style profile, laceless sneakers are available in different profiles perfect for any taste. Louisa Page, the design director for Jordan woman’s division, said that their female customer wants options, and lately, that includes slip-on. “She wants something that fits her busy lifestyle, and our job is to obsess the details for them—from comfort and functionality to style and design,” she says, highlighting the AJ1 slip, which is perfect to pair with a dress or a pair of jeans. “Which is why we’ve added more easy entry options for high and low tops, something our consumers asked for and need.”
Before you get too amped up on going lace-free, especially at the gym, we suggest a wear test. Even if a laceless style is marketed for working out, you want to make sure you’re comfortable moving around before committing to an entire sweat session in it. The team at Altra—a brand well-known in the running community for their zero-drop options with natural foot-shape toe box—wants consumers to be able to wear the same style from street to sweat and everywhere in between. “Our slip-on style, called the Dyani, has our highest performance midsole compound,” says co-founder Golden Harper. “It’s soft underfoot, but still bouncy, fast, and responsive when running quickly. Of you need to run or put a workout in, it has all the underfoot tech of our best running shoes.”
So while you may not want to log too many miles in a pair of lace-free kicks (as there’s inevitably less support than a strapped-in option) they’re a hassle-free option for getting around and doing some light fitness. Snag yourself a pair of no-show socks, and get to steppin’.
APL Techloom Bliss ($200)
Reebok Lite Slip-On ($55)
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