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9 Spring Sneakers That Are Both Comfy and Full of Personality

A close-up of a person wearing pink Brooks Running Glycerin 21 sneakers with white tube socks.

Photo: Brooks Running

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Feel-good sneakers are having a moment, and we are so here for it. “People are feeling more empowered to wear comfortable shoes,” says Sophie Strauss, a stylist in Los Angeles. “There’s something kind of adventurous and youthful about being comfortable.”

This doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice fashion for function. We believe that comfort and personality should coexist seamlessly in your wardrobe, especially when it comes to sneakers. Luckily, today’s sneaker trends aren’t subtle (yes, even the comfy ones).  They might sport bright colors, bold patterns, or sparkly materials that add a glimmer of glitter to your ‘fit. Or they might be an old-school design you can pair with an unexpected outfit for a playful look. No matter what, the key is to find a pair that your feet love. As Strauss says, “Take good care of your feet because you’ve got to walk on them for the rest of your life.” Below are nine pairs your feet will love thanks to how good they look *and* feel while they’re on.

Our favorite spring sneakers, at a glance:

9 spring sneakers that are comfy *and* full of personality



Best track-star silhouette: Brooks, Glycerin 21 — $160.00

Available sizes: 5-12, in half sizes and two widths

The newly released version of Brooks’ popular Glycerin model feels like slipping your feet inside fluffy pillows, with supportive cushioning underfoot and ample padding around the heel and in the tongue. Bonus: The round laces stay tied even without a double knot. Don’t shy away from wearing them on a run and then out on a date after, even once they’ve become a bit… worn in. “There’s something kind of cool about a beat-up shoe with an outfit that looks like it’s supposed to be worn with something kind of dressy,” says Strauss.

Materials: DNA LOFTv3 cushioning in the midsole, 59.7% recycled materials in the upper

Colors: 7

Cushioning: Maximum

Drop: 10mm

Pros: 

  • Ample cushion and padding
  • Available in two widths
  • Rocker design makes walking or running feel easy
  • Versatile

Cons: 

  • Padding might feel snug—size up



Best floral: Nobull, Floral AllDay — $159.00

Available sizes: 5-11, in half sizes

NoBull sneakers have long been beloved in the CrossFit community for offering supreme support as well as a pop of personality. The ripstop material ensures that your shoes can withstand the demands of intense gym sessions and commutes alike, providing longevity without compromising on comfort. Bu the star of the show is the floral pattern on these kicks that will brighten up any outfit with its bold, tropical design. “I think people are feeling more adventurous,” says Strauss of these kinds of unexpected twists on traditional sneaker styles. 

Materials: Ripstop upper, EVA midsole, rubber outsole

Colors: 2

Cushioning: Medium

Drop: 10mm

Read our full review of Nobull sneakers, here. 

Pros: 

  • Breathable durable upper
  • Bright, unique pattern
  • Reflective details add visibility in low light

Cons: 

  • Run narrow



Best Dad Shoes: New Balance, Made in USA 990v6 — $200.00

Available sizes: 7-16, in half sizes and six widths

Originally designed for running, this practical New Balance classic is something your dad might have worn back in the day. Today, it’s got a more streamlined look and snappier cushioning. Supportive enough to let you spend all day on your feet, it also cleans up handsomely. “The dad sneaker isn’t something that people are just saving for athleisure, but pairing with a spring dress or something that’s maybe a little bit more femme,” says Strauss.   

Materials: Mesh/suede/synthetic upper, FuelCell and ENCAP midsole

Colors: 3

Cushioning: High

Drop: Not available

Pros: 

  •  
    Major comfort and support
     
  • Reflective details add visibility in low light
  • Available in six widths
  • At least 70% of the shoe is made in the USA
  • Versatile

Cons: 

  • Runs large—size down
  • Pricey



Best classic: Adidas, Samba OG Shoes — $100.00

Available sizes: 5-15, in half sizes

You might have worn this cult-classic shoe during soccer practice as a kid. The timeless style is back in a big way and looks good with jeans, dresses, shorts—just about anything. It’s comfy, too. Last year, we asked podiatrist Brad Schaeffer for his take on Adidas Sambas from a foot health perspective. He gave the grippy outsole high marks, but warned these can run narrow, and you might need extra arch support: “I can say without reservation that I would wear these all day but with Dr. Scholl’s Prevent Pain Insoles. This will give you a trendy shoe to wear all day without sacrificing comfort and support.” 

Materials: Leather upper with suede details, synthetic leather lining, gum rubber cupsole and midsole

Colors: 19

Cushioning: Low

Drop: Not available

Read our full review of the Adidas Sambas, here.

Pros: 

  • Iconic, versatile style
  • Flexible but sturdy leather upper
     
  • Excellent traction

Cons: 

  • Not much arch support—consider insoles
  • Run narrow



Best gorpcore: Keen, Zionic Waterproof Hiking Shoe — $160.00

Available sizes: 5-12, in half sizes

Hiking shoes have become unexpected statement pieces, particularly among Gen Z. “There’s something provocative about wearing a shoe that gets cast aside as ugly and saying, ‘No, I’m making this sexy. I’m making this expressive,’” says Strauss. This hiking sneaker is sturdy enough to take you up gnarly trails—or to the local beer garden. And it’s durable, made with a rugged outsole and waterproof protection to keep you and your feet safe and dry. 

Materials: Ripstop upper, KEEN.DRY waterproof, breathable membrane

Colors: 5

Cushioning: Medium

Drop: 14mm

Pros: 

  • Waterproof
  • Durable, with excellent traction
  • Achilles pad in the heel for added comfort
  • Contoured Fit–follows foot’s contours for a more secure fit

Cons: 

  • Take some breaking in



Best slip-on: Cariuma, Canvas Slip On — $89.00

Available sizes: 5-13, in half sizes

This popular skater-inspired style is designed to effortlessly slip on and head wherever your feet will take you. Cariuma offers Slip On in a variety of upper materials, including canvas, leather, and a recycled option. Best of all, it has a reputation for being comfortable right out of the box—no break-in period required. 

Materials: Choose between canvas, leather, recycled, or mixed material upper; cork and bio-based foam insole, natural rubber outsole 

Colors: 7 (canvas), 3 (leather), 1 (recycled), 6 (mixed)

Cushioning: Medium

Drop: Not available

Read our full review of the Cariuma Slip-On, here.

Pros: 

  • Hands-free easy on and off
  • No break-in period
  • Affordable
  • Eco-friendly materials
  • Two trees are planted for every purchase
  • Versatile

Cons: 

  • Run small—size up
  • Not as supportive as other styles



Best metallic: Cole Haan, Women’s GrandPro Topspin Sneakers — $180.00

Sizes: 5-11, in half sizes

Lots of brands these days are putting out sneakers that shine—literally. “Silver was a very big color for the last two years, and is pretty versatile,” says Strauss. If you want to put your own spin on the style, these Cole Haan tennies in gold will add a bit of brilliance to your feet. The quilted pattern offers a fresh take on the in-your-face metallic trend and sits atop an amply cushioned footbed.  

Materials: Leather and suede upper, EVA midsole, GRANDFØAM footbed, rubber toe and heel pods

Colors: 12

Cushioning: Medium

Drop: Not available

Pros: 

  • Trendy
  • Lightweight
  • Soft cushion

Cons: 

  • Runs narrow



Best maximalist: On, Cloudmonster 2 — $180.00

Available sizes: 5-11, in half sizes

Big, bulky silhouettes are everywhere, but no shoe pulls off thick and sleek quite like the On Cloudmonster. The second iteration of On Running’s iconic style comes with a 6mm thicker sole to make room for even more cushioning than the original, plus fashion-forward colorways and delightful details to make you smile (like mini polka dots on the laces.) The bouncy dual-density foam and breathable upper will take you on 20-mile runs if you want them to. And just look damn good whenever you’re out and about.

Materials: Mesh upper made from 100% recycled polyester, nylon blend speed board, CloudTec® cushioning

Colors: 3

Cushioning: Maximum

Drop: 6mm

Pros: 

  •  
    Major cushion
     
  • Thin, breathable upper
  • Rocker design makes walking or running feel easy

Cons: 

  • Maximum cushion not ideal for those with balance issues



Best sparkly: Betsey Johnson, Sidny — $89.00

Available sizes: 6-13, in half sizes

If you really want to make a statement, you’ve got lots of options this spring. “Youthful, fun styles [are] going to be continuing, especially since spring is a season that really lends itself to that,” says Strauss. We’re partial to this glittery fuschia pair from Betsey Johnson that glam up any look. The all-over rhinestone platform style also comes in 22 other colorways, with a whole host of whimsical pattern options—like hearts and flowers—to unleash your sparkliest side.   

Materials: Manmade upper materials with rhinestones, rubber outsole

Colors: 23

Cushioning: Medium

Drop: Not available

Pros: 

  • Affordable
  • Glamorous
  • Thick platform
  • Versatile

Cons: 

  • Run big—size down

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