Best minimalist shoes for men: Our favorites

Finding a shoe that has a good combination of style, comfort and affordability is something that most of us dream of.

Whether you’re looking for something for barefoot running, or you’re after a casual minimalist shoe that you can wear at any occasion, we’re going to run through some of the best mens shoes for minimalists.

OluKai Nohea Moku Men’s Shoes

Style: Casual

A brand that has risen in popularity in recent years, OluKai take Hawaiian inspiration to create simple shoes that are designed to be both comfortable and fashionable.

One of their most popular models is the Nohea Moku. It’s designed to be extremely easy to slip on and off without having to tie your laces, and the fold down heel means you really can slide them on and off quickly.

They are also made to withstand all weathers. So whether you need breathability from living in a hot country, or you need a trainer that can withstand torrential downpours, this manages to do both pretty well.

You can take the sole out of the shoe and throw them in the washing machine if you get them wet or dirty, which comes in extremely useful if you’re travelling or want to reduce the amount of shoes you own.

If you’re searching for a lightweight shoe, then I like the Nohea Moku – but, take a quick look through the OluKai selection to see if there’s anything there that matches your requirements

Camper Men’s Peu Cami Sneaker

Style: Casual

Another pair of casual minimalist shoes that can be used everyday are the Peu Cami sneaker from brand Camper. They can be worn for both walking long distances or for use in the office.

They’re a comfortable shoe that will last you for a long time. They allow for natural movement of your feet, and they feel great – they’re wide-fitting, making them perfect if you need a wide toe box.

Though not for running, wearing barefoot shoes like this will allow you to feel the ground beneath your soles. The barefoot approach has been adopted by more casual brands, with minimal material making the shoe flexible.

This is a solid pair of minimal footwear that will appeal to those looking for something that can be worn in various different circumstances, whether with fitted jeans or with a niche pair of shorts.

Xero Shoes Men’s Prio

Style: Athletic

Xero have been making minimal shoes for many years now, and their Prio is typically made for crossfit. Though, it’s so comfortable that it can be used for more than just the gym, whether for trail running or for long hikes.

The good thing about this Xero barefoot shoe is that you can wear it both with and without socks depending on your own preference. They’re not the first barefoot shoe to do this, but it’s nice to be able to wear shoes sock-free whilst travelling.

They’re vegan friendly shoes that can help you to maintain a good posture. The thin insole allows for a barefoot feel, and they very much feel like walking or running barefoot when you wear them.

If you’re yet to wear barefoot shoes then starting with a pair of Xero shoes is a great idea. They’re one of the most well known brands in the space, and the Prio allows for such flexibility that

Vibram Five Fingers Men’s CVT-Hemp Minimalist

Style: Walking

The Vibram Fivefingers are amongst the most well known truly minimalist shoes, and they stand out like a sore thumb when you wear them. For some people that will put them off completely.

But if you can look past that (or actually appreciate the design), they’re actually a great barefoot shoe. They have your toes in separate compartments, which allows for comfortable toe splay that you won’t find in other barefoot shoes.

They’re amongst the most comfortable shoes that you’ll find, and can be used for a variety of different activities, though they’re primarily used for walking.

They’re lightweight and durable enough that you can use them for other activities – a lot of people wear them for weight lifting, as they’re great for getting a solid stance on the gym floor.

Although thin, they have responsive cushioning which makes them an extremely comfortable shoe. If you appreciate the style, or at worst can look past it in an attempt to treat your feet better, then a pair of Vibram Fivefingers are worth testing out.

Xero Shoes Men’s Hana Casual Shoe

Style: Casual

Another pair of Xero shoes that are worth checking out are their Hana shoe. High quality casual minimalist shoes are few and far between, and it’s really tough to find a pair of minimalist shoes that actually look good.

The Hana does this pretty well. It’s lightweight enough to qualify as a minimalist shoe, but they’re actually based on the same design as one of the Xero sandals. This gives them a barefoot and comfortable feel, with a minimal sole that has zero drop.

A zero drop shoe like this is perfect for those that don’t want their shoes to have a raised heel. This is typically much better for your posture, and can allow to natural movement when you’re walking around.

They are true to size, but they do have a wide toe box, meaning that they’re a great choice if you find some other minimal shoes a little tight. They are vegan, and they’re some of the best barefoot shoes if you’re searching for something you can wear casually.

Common Questions about Men’s Minimalist Shoes

What are considered minimalist shoes?

Minimalist shoes are considered to be those that allow for a lot of flexibility – they often are lightweight and have a thin outsole, and have a barefoot sensation that feels like you’re not wearing anything at all.

Who are minimalist shoes good for?

Minimalist shoes are great for those that have issues with the rigid nature of typical footwear, as they allow for minimal interference and have strong arch support. If you have pain or discomfort from wearing normal shoes, minimal footwear may be the answer to your problems.

Can you wear minimalist shoes everyday?

Yes, you can wear minimalist shoes everyday if you wish to. However, bear in mind that it might take you a while to get used to them, so it may be worth switching between them and standard shoes for a while at first.

Do you wear socks with minimalist shoes?

You do not need to wear socks with all minimalist shoes, as some are designed for you to wear without socks at all. However, this does depend on the specific shoe itself, so it’s worth checking beforehand just in case.

Conclusion

Overall, there’s a good selection of different minimalist footwear you can choose from if you want to ensure your feet are well taken care of. This varies from conventional shoes all the way through to minimalist running shoes.

Though subjective, there are some shoes that stand out a little more than others. Brands like Xero have a long reputation where minimalist and barefoot shoes are concerned, and you can’t go wrong picking up a pair.

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Author

Matt

Matt caught the travel bug as a teen. He turned to minimalism to help maintain his nomadic lifestyle and ensure he only kept the essentials with him. He enjoys hiking, keeping fit and reading anything philosophical (on his Kindle - no space for books!).

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