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Who has a spare moment to sit down, grab a shoe, awkwardly put it on, fuss with lacing, and then tie it up? We recommend slip-on shoes as the ideal footwear for when you need to get going. These shoes were named for their user-friendly design that enables you to slide them on and off with ease. Additionally, they are ideal for breezing through airport security.
We conducted a testing session with our crew of experts, who tried out 20 of the most popular slip-on shoes in the market. Our assessment centered on determining which products offered the utmost comfort, style, sustainability, and suitability for athletic activities. Our team voted the Allbirds Wool Loungers as the "best overall" option due to their versatility, sleek design, comfort, and easy on/off feature.
We were also impressed by eight other slip-on shoes, and we have listed them below. Stop and read to discover our thoughts on each product with regards to value, aesthetic appeal, comfort, and durability.
What We Like
Available in several colors
Includes natural antimicrobial materials
What We Don't Like
Insufficient arch support
The Allbirds Wool Loungers are made from eco-friendly materials, and they are both comfortable and stylish. These slip-on shoes are produced using sustainable and ethical manufacturing practices. Additionally, they are available in several colors. Wool is an ideal material choice since it is naturally antimicrobial, which means it resists odors, even if you opt not to wear socks. However, wool is not as lightweight as mesh, and therefore, these shoes may be more suitable for colder months.
Our tester was nine months pregnant, and she found that these shoes were easy to slip on and off without using her hands. Although the arch support within these shoes is minimal and may not provide sufficient contouring for long periods of walking, it was adequate for our tester with flat arches. These slip-on shoes are slightly more expensive than others in the market. However, this is due to their high-quality material and environmentally-friendly construction.
Price at time of publication: $105
Materials: Merino wool, EVA made from sugarcane, castor bean oil-based insole foam | Sizes: 5 through to 11
Our Favorite Features
A multitude of hues available
Excellent arch support
A versatile drop-heel design
A breathable and stretchy upper
Areas for Improvement
Finding shoes that offer more than one style can be difficult. However, the OLUKAI Pehuea Slip-On Sneakers for Women provide an answer! The brand's distinctive drop-in heel feature allows you to wear them as loafers or clogs by simply dropping the heel down.
This slip-on sneaker comes in a plethora of colors and boasts a flexible upper that our tester found to be breathable. The spacious toe box left enough room, even when our tester wore socks. The arch support was just right, with "the soles being thick and grooved in a way that lifts my arch," according to our tester, who found the shoes comfortable after a few wears. This shoe never caused any rubbing or discomfort on our tester's feet. She could slip them on without using her hands after a few wears.
To make the shoes easier to care for, OLUKAI made the microfiber insole detachable and washable. The shoes come in a range of half sizes (6.5, 7.5, 8.5, and 9.5), but unfortunately, not in larger sizes.
Price at publication: $100
Materials: Microfiber, mesh, rubber, synthetic PU | Sizes: 5 to 12
What We Love
Memory foam insoles
Areas for Improvement
When it comes to laid-back footwear, the Hey Dude Women's Wendy Lace-Up Loafers reign supreme. The shoes' broad toe box gives them a boat shoe-esque appearance. You can choose from classic grey, or brighter shades and patterns like pink or leopard print. At under 5 ounces, they're among the lightest slip-ons around.
Our tester felt the Hey Dudes' greatest shortcoming was its arch support, but since the insole is interchangeable, you can always substitute it with your own. The canvas material of the shoes was not uncomfortable to our tester's feet, and the elastic laces enabled her to adjust the fit to her preference. While the Hey Dude Women's Wendy Lace-Up Loafers are reasonably priced, our tester expressed concerns about their longevity, particularly if you plan to wear them outside of the house frequently.
Price at publication: $55
Materials: Cotton, elastic, leather, memory foam | Size: 5 to 12
What We Appreciate
Variety of colors
What We Dislike
Price may be a dealbreaker
The running game changed for our tester with the On Running Cloud 5 Waterproof shoes. These slip-on sneakers quickly became a daily go-to, ideal for running, weight training, errands, and travel. Their lightweight design and comfortable framework ensured that they required no break-in time. The sole cushions feet, reducing muscle fatigue to allow for longer and faster runs.
Our tester tried the lighter-colored shoes and was pleased to note that they stayed clean over two months of use. What sets this shoe apart is its waterproof upper, making it perfect for outdoor runs. Plus, the materials are eco-friendly. The elastic laces make for easy tightening, while the shoe comes in various colors to suit all styles. The price tag, at nearly $170, may turn some off, but in our tester's view, it's well worth the cost since these shoes are highly durable.
Price at time of publication: $170
Materials: Recycled polyester | Size: 5 to 11
What We Like
Color options are extensive
Adaptable upper conforms to your foot
What We Don't Like
Slim and tight-fitting, may require upsizing
The APL Women's TechLoom Breeze shoes are perfect for those searching for a lightweight workout sneaker. At just 6.8 ounces, they are a unisex shoe in multiple colors, so even if your size isn't in stock, you can adjust slightly for a men's option. With a low arch, these sneakers are excellent for running. Even though the upper mesh isn't waterproof, it's stretchy, breathable, and adaptable to the foot.
While wearing these shoes, our tester found that she had to size up, as suggested by customer reviews and the slim design. The mesh upper can feel constricting, particularly with socks. Sizing up allowed her more space while wearing socks and preventing any blisters from appearing. However, the larger size meant the shoe rubbed the ankle slightly. Though pricey, these shoes are an excellent investment due to their high-quality materials and construction.
Price at time of publication: $220
Materials: Elastic, Propelium, rubber, TechLoom upper | Size: 5.5 to 11
Excellent arch support
Convenient slip-on design
A wide range of colors and sizes to choose from
Looking for the perfect shoe that offers all-day comfort? Look no further than the Kizik Women's Lima. As a leader in slip-on shoe innovation, Kizik has developed a unique heel design that dips down as you slip your foot in, ensuring a snug and secure fit. Our tester lauded this shoe for its sturdy build, stability, and comfort, praising the arch support and roomy toe box. The mesh upper of the Lima also ensures excellent airflow, keeping your feet cool and dry throughout the day.
One of the standout features of the Kizik Women's Lima is the size range. With the shoe available in half sizes from 6 to 13, there is something for virtually every foot size. Additionally, the numerous color options mean you'll be able to find a shoe that fits your style. However, the shoes come at a higher price point, with the Kizik Women's Lima retailing at $109 at the time of publishing.
Materials: Rabbit foam, knit, rubber | Size: 6 to 13
Mild arch support
Eco-friendly recycled plastic construction
Comes in multiple colors
Spacious toe box for wider feet
Our tester never liked slip-on shoes until she tried the Avre Infinity Glide Light. Despite concerns about rubbing or irritation, she never experienced discomfort with these sneakers. After receiving them, she wore them for six straight hours with no issues. The breathable mesh upper of the shoe allowed for proper airflow, while the ample toe box provided a comfortable fit for wider feet. The slight arch support also ensured long-term comfort.
The Avre Infinity Glide Light comes in a variety of colors, but unfortunately, the biggest size it carries is 10. Additionally, the shoes tend to run a half size larger, so it's best to keep this in mind when placing your order. While they might seem a bit pricey at $145, they're made with recycled plastic and built to last.
Materials: Knit, recycled plastic, foam | Size: 5 to 10
Our top stylish pick for a loafer is the Naturalizer Women’s Marianne Loafer. Elevate your wardrobe with this cute and trendy shoe, which comes in a wide fit, multiple sizes, patterns, and colors, including black leather for a sleek look and nude snake for a funky vibe. Our tester found these loafers to be versatile enough for occasions beyond casual wear, as well as comfortable with no break-in time required. While they lack significant arch support, they do have a minor lift, so they’re comfortable for a few hours of use. Our only issue is that they’re slightly overpriced, costing up to $30 more than we’d prefer.
If sustainability is a top priority for you, the Cariuma IBI SLIP ON is the perfect choice. Made with eco-friendly materials and sustainably crafted, these shoes contain bamboo knit, green EVA from sugarcane, and memory foam vegan cork insoles. With a significantly low carbon footprint, the company even plants trees in Brazil for every shoe purchased. Our tester found the shoes to be breathable and comfortable, with a single short break-in period of two-mile walking involved. The shoes are easy to clean, thanks to removable insoles and the ability to machine wash them without socks.
For the environmentally conscious and wool-loving consumer, our top pick is Allbirds’ Wool Loungers. Made with merino wool, these shoes are our overall favorite for being both stylish and sustainable. On the other hand, for those on a budget, we recommend Hey Dude’s Wendy Loafers. These shoes are lightweight and feature memory foam insoles, so they’re both easy to wear and easy on your wallet.
We enlisted testers to don the shoes consistently for a few weeks and rate each pair based on comfort, fit, support, durability, and value. Each category earned a score on a five-point scale, which we then averaged to determine overall scores for each shoe. These scores led us to the selection of the slip-on shoes featured on this list.
Additional slip-on shoes that underwent testing include Dr. Scholl's Madison Sneaker, UGG Women's Sammy Sneaker, Ecco Women's Soft 7 Woven Slip On Sneaker, Skechers Slip-ins: Ultra Flex 3.0, Vionic Women's Penelope Slip On Sneaker, Vince Warren Platform Sneaker, Taos Women's Dandy Sneaker, Superga Mule Sneakers, Rothy's The City Slip On, Vivobarefoot's Opanka, and Birdies Booties.
Rubber soles are typical for slip-on shoes to aid with traction. The uppers can consist of an assortment of fabrics such as mesh, leather, canvas, wool, suede, corduroy, or others, and the insoles and soles feature memory foam, foam, or EVA cushioning. Numerous slip-on shoes are now fashioned from recycled materials, with a few featured on this list.
Many slip-on shoes have memory foam insoles or thick EVA soles, making them suitable for everyday wear. Some loafer-style slip-ons on this list lack arch support or contouring and appear flat. For enhanced comfort, locating slip-on shoes with arch support is recommended.
Aside from arch support, the shoes' upper and back are crucial factors in determining comfort. The absence of laces on slip-on shoes may create an ill-fitting grip on the foot, causing the heel to rub or slide against the ankle's back. This can lead to blistering or chafing. Another consideration is how snugly the upper fits on the foot's top. It should not be too tight, causing the feet's bones to hurt or become numb. The upper should move along with the foot for optimal comfort.
When it comes to slip-on shoes, there are a variety of styles to choose from. While loafers and athletic shoes are common slip-on options, there are also more casual and stylish options such as clogs and espadrilles. Slip-on shoes that extend over the ankle are ideal for outdoor activities like gardening, hiking, or camping.
Whether or not to wear socks with slip-on shoes depends on the style and intended use of the shoe. Athletic and walking shoes benefit from socks to absorb sweat and prevent blisters, while other slip-on styles like loafers, clogs, espadrilles, or waterproof options may not require socks. Consider ordering a half size up if you plan to wear socks with your slip-on shoes.
If you choose to go sockless, ensure that the slip-on shoe materials are breathable to prevent sweating and potential blisters or chafing. Look for features like anti-microbial treatment or naturally anti-microbial materials such as wool. Removing insoles or liners can aid in cleaning and prevent odor-causing bacteria growth.
Caring for slip-on shoes varies depending on the materials. Machine washable options can be washed with soap and water, while shoes with leather or suede uppers require specialized cleaning solvents. Consider using odor-control sprays or insoles to keep them fresh and replace them when necessary.
Podiatrist Cory Clement recommends slip-on shoes with a firm and durable construction, a deep heel cup, and a thick rubber sole to prevent excessive pronation or rolling inward of the foot. Different seasons may require different materials, such as breathable polypropylene or cotton for summer and wool for winter.
When it comes to walking in slip-on shoes, choose athletic options with proper cushioning and arch support and ensure the shoe fits well and doesn't slide against the ankle to prevent blisters. Breathable materials can also help prevent sweating and chafing.
Author Alex Temblador is an experienced outdoor and travel journalist who enjoys adventurous travels and activities around the world. Podiatrist Cory Clement provided expert advice and guidance in the compilation of this slip-on shoe guide.